A Story of the Legion of Super-Heroes
By: Greg Gildersleeve
Myriad and story Copr. 2003, 2015 Greg Gildersleeve
All other characters Copr. DC Comics, Inc.
Note: This story takes place following “The Legionnaire Bride of Starfinger,” Superboy # 200, February 1974
Invisible Kid’s shift of monitor duty was over. He was now free to spend the evening any way he wanted.
“Hey, Lyle,” Matter-Eater Lad called to him from the corridor. Some of us are going to the holoflix to see the new J’onn C’lodd-v'Dahm holo. Want to join us?”
“No thanks,” Lyle demurred.
“Oh, okay. Another time then.” Tenz was used to such turn-downs from Lyle by now. He knew no slight was intended. It’s just that Lyle Norg was an insular person – all test tubes and labs. The only Legionnaire nerdier than Invisible Kid was Brainiac 5, who even now was safely ensconced in his lab, figuring out some way to isolate the molecular structure of kono juice or something Tenz found equally inane. Scientists. Why couldn’t they just have a good time like regular folks?
Invisible Kid watched as Matter-Eater Lad and the others – Light Lass, Timber Wolf, and Dream Girl (whose boyfriend, Star Boy, was on a distant mission) – went their way. He then wandered down the corridors of the Legion dorm complex to his quarters. The Legion had changed much since he had been its leader just a couple of years ago: a new headquarters, new members such as Shadow Lass, Timber Wolf, and even Lyle’s young protégé, Chemical King, and dangerous new enemies such as Tyr. Even older enemies such as the Fatal Five and, most recently, Starfinger, were acting in more ambitious ways. Perhaps the others couldn’t understand why Invisible Kid had started to feel lost – truly invisible – in the Legion he had been part of for so long.
As Legion leader, Lyle Norg had had a purpose, a goal, a sense of respect from the others. A sly smile came to his face as he recalled the time he had slugged Ultra Boy to prevent him from disobeying an order. Jo Nah was one of the Legion’s most powerful members and could easily have torn a “second-stringer” like Invisible Kid apart. But no Legion leader would be disobeyed, not even Invisible Kid.
Exhausted after leading the Legion during one of its most hectic years, Lyle had chosen not to run for reelection. Since then, however, he had felt unfocused, purposeless. He had done a lot of good as a Legionnaire. He knew it and was proud of his accomplishments, but a nagging sense remained deep within him that there should be something more. His life as a Legionnaire had been fulfilling, but what of life outside the Legion? A few years ago, Invisible Kid would never have contemplated such a thing. But now . . .
He paused at the door of his quarters. Another night of reading chemistry texts and working on a paper called “Models of Refractive Light Theorems” that he’d been asked to write for the Interstellar Science Institute. But the memory of Tenz’s invitation lingered. Going to a holoflix didn’t really appeal to him, but what other delights were available in Metropolis? What of life outside the Legion?
Among the Legionnaires, Invisible Kid wasn’t known for acting on whims. He presented himself as thoughtful, deliberate and serious. Yet a whim had led Lyle Norg to create the invisibility serum that gave him his powers in the first place. His Legion membership rested entirely on a desire to sneak out of school during a boring and criminally unchallenging science class. It had been a long time since he’d acted on a whim. He decided he was long overdue. The chemistry texts could wait.
He stopped in his room just long enough to change clothes. What does one wear for a night on the town? He decided that a nice, beige shirt and dark blue astro-blazer would work. No sense in being too ostentatious. The last step was to remove his trademark headband. The simple brown band wasn’t grafted to his head, even though some thought it was as he rarely appeared in public without it. But tonight Invisible Kid was taking the night off, headband and all. He brushed his curly, brown hair and kidded himself that he looked dashing.
Taking a deep breath, he prepared to step into the brave, crisp air of Metropolis night life.
Click here for Parts 2 and 3
Click here for Parts 2 and 3