Twinepathy (Part 9): Lava Java Coffee Shop

Hullo, everyone! Excited for the next part? It’s a nice long one, too! Today we get some answers, and we get to know Blaze and Data better. Yay! Like the new banner? If you missed the cover reveal, you can check it out here, and if you’re new, you can find the first part here. Enjoy!

The Lava Java coffee shop is always busy, even when it seems like no one should be there. Today is no exception. Data leads us to a corner booth that’s mostly secluded. We all slide in, but she heads over to the counter and orders. Minutes later, our coffee comes out, fresh. She hands Brooklyn and me our favorites, and she gives Maddie an ice water. How in the world does she know that Brooklyn only drinks fat-free lattes, and I love peppermint hot chocolate? She hands Blaze something that just looks like a ton of caffeine and sugar, and she sits down next to him, in a spot where she can see everything that’s going on in the coffee shop.

“We definitely owe you an explanation,” Data begins, stirring her iced mocha. “You see, I’m the head of a top-secret superhero organization. The details are complicated, but we’ll get to that later. My power is complicated, too, but to put it simply, I’m a mind reader that works through physical contact.”

Blaze chokes on his drink and looks at us. “Trust me, it’s way more complicated than that, and way bigger.”

Data gives him a look, and he backs off. “I brushed against you, Albany, two days ago, when I was on a jog. Because of your connection to your sister, I was able to read both of you. I couldn’t turn around and talk to you then, but—”

“Are you saying you know everything about us?” I interrupt, abandoning my peppermint goodness.

She nods. “Pretty much.” Brooklyn and I exchange glances. “Everything from before I touched you, that is, not since,” she amends, glancing at Maddie. “Anyway, part of my job is to catalogue superheroes and give them a way to contact us in case of emergency. That’s what the volleyball with the button was for. I knew about Brooklyn’s little volleyball and decided this would be a good hidden contact device. I sent someone to give it to you.” She takes a sip of her iced mocha.

“Who?” Blaze asks. “Who made this royal mess?”

Data gives him a fierce glare. “That is confidential information.”

“Why?” Blaze taps his fingers on the table. “Because you know that I’ll harp on them when I get back?”

“No. You don’t even know this person,” Data says, giving him an angry look before turning back to us. “Obviously, something went wrong, and they simply left it on your porch with no explanation.”

I frown. “So you’re trying to recruit us to work for your top-secret superhero thingy?”

She smiles. “Pretty much.”

“Then we’ll need more details,” Brooklyn hints. Good for her, actually speaking up.

“And since you know our real names, I think it’s only fair that you tell us your real name,” I put in.

Data focuses on me, and I squirm. Usually I can handle a stare, but her stare… she already knows so much about me. I feel like that earthworm in biology class. A simple, easy dissection. “My name’s Jenna,” she says, leaning back. “Everyone calls me Jen now.”

That seems to fit her, somehow. But was that a touch of sadness in her voice when she said “now”?

She sips her coffee. “The organization is called IDIA, the International Defense and Intelligence Agency. To outside observers, we seem to be just like the CIA or the FBI, but on the inside, we’re a superhero recruiting and freelancing operation.”

“Freelancing?” I ask.

Jen nods. “When someone – say the FBI – has a case or a situation they can’t handle, they’ll send someone to me. I look at the situation objectively, unlike them, and then decide what kind of powers or abilities would be most useful in the situation. Then I put everyone in contact with whoever – using our superheroes’ code names, like Data or Blaze, to protect their true identity. It’s very efficient and safe. We also provide support, counseling, and protection, even for people who aren’t on working status.” She pauses. “I also help put together superhero groups on occasion, too, but that doesn’t happen very often.”

I exchange glances with Brooklyn. The two of us have been on our own for a long time, not trusting anyone with our secret. For us, it’s been easy to keep it under wraps and pretend it’s normal. Some others might not have it so easy. And this… this could help us.

“What do you mean by people who aren’t on working status?” Brooklyn asks cautiously.

Jen leans forward. “We allow members to choose whether they want to go on missions. Some empowered people want to live quiet, normal lives, without the chaos of missions or world-saving fiascos. So they go in ‘dormant’ status – they have code names and contact devices, in case of trouble, but they don’t go on missions. We could always start you two off on that level if you’d like?”

Again, Brooklyn and I exchange glances. Yes, I say.

Brooklyn pauses, her brain whirring. “Yes,” she says quietly. “We’ll do it.”

Whoa, what are the twins getting themselves into??? What do you think of Jen? Enjoying this? Comment below!

Next part –>

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Be Careful What You Say In A College Coffee Shop

Hullo, everyone! Did you know that sometimes you have to write for school? Isn’t that nuts? I recently finished a 700+ word essay for my comp class about one of my least favorite subjects: *whispers* poetry. So much fun. But yesterday I got to write a short story for American Lit! Yay! I thought all of you would enjoy it, and it’s been a while since I posted a short story, so I present to you… Be Careful What You Say In A College Coffee Shop.

“I just don’t know what to do,” Steven said, rubbing his forehead. “She won’t eat anything except spicy chicken wings anymore.” The college coffee shop buzzed around the two of them, their lattes sitting untouched.

His friend Colin smothered his laughter and pasted on a solemn face as he leaned across the table. “That’s a problem all right. Have you tried everything? Steak? Ribs? Ground beef?”

Steven snorted. “If she develops a craving for steak or ribs, I’m in trouble. My wallet’s having trouble with chicken wings as it is.”

“Well, they’re normally picky, just not that picky,” Colin commented.

“I’m not sure what to do next. I think I might—” Steven stopped, looking over Colin’s shoulder at the person sitting next to them. “What are you doing?” he asked.

Colin turned around to look, and the girl turned from her computer screen. “W-what do you mean?” she stammered.

Steven pointed at her computer. “I saw it! You’re writing down our conversation!”

The girl shifted nervously and glanced at her laptop. Colin leaned over and read it. “‘If she develops a craving for steak or ribs, I’m in trouble.’ You are writing down what we’re saying!”

She shifted again. “Um, yeah. About that. What in the world were you talking about? I just tuned in.”

Steven gaped at her. “We were talking about my dog. Why were you writing that down?”

She laughed. “Your dog! And here I thought it might be your girlfriend.”

Colin leaned towards Steven, eyeing the girl. “I think she might be crazy,” he whispered.

The girl’s cheeks turned pink, indicating she had heard. “I-I’m sorry. I’ll stop.” She stood up quickly and began to pack her things.

“No, wait.” Steven stood up. “I want to know why you were writing down our private conversation.” He focused on making himself look as imposing as possible.

The girl visibly cringed. “Um. Well, I’m a writer. And your conversation sounded like something interesting to make a story out of.”

Steven gaped. “What?”

“That’s a story I’d like to read,” Colin said under his breath.

The girl sidled to the side, hugging her laptop to her chest. “Um, can I go now?”

Steven stepped back. “Um, if you want. I’m, uh, I’m sorry if I intimidated you.”

She scampered off as quick as she could, and Steven sat back down at the table. Colin smirked. “I guess the lesson for this ‘Embarrassing Episode In The Life of Steven’ is ‘Be careful what you say in public, because you never know who could be listening and your words might end up in a book someday.’”

Steven glared at him. “You need to work on that.”

Colin grinned. “I know.”

Tales From The Writers’ Desk: Crazy Drivers

This tale has been sitting for a long time… in my imagination, that is. I started writing it when I got my drivers’ license… three months ago. 😀 Enjoy!

I slam the door to my office and slump down into my swivel chair. I blow out a breath and growl, pushing my hair out of my face. The door opens slightly and Benedict steps in. “Trouble on the way here?”

I groan. “I hate driving. Honestly, what’s with people on the roads? Everyone drives so slow!”

Benedict sits down in the interview chair. “Really?”

I sigh. “Yes! There was this jerk in front of me who was just inching along! I was stuck behind him for over a mile, and I couldn’t pass him, thanks to all the other cars whizzing past. So I had to wait until I got to Lava Java.” I growl. “Thank goodness he didn’t stop, too.”

“That’s interesting,” Benedict says.

I frown. “Why?”

“Well, on my way to work today, there was a person riding my bumper almost the whole time.” He leans back in the chair. “I was quite relieved when they turned into Lava Java Coffee Shop.”

My face heats up. “Um…” This is awkward…

Benedict gives me a half grin. “Don’t worry about it. But you may want to work on patience… and your driving.”

Time to chat! Do you drive? Which one are you: the speeder or the slowpoke? (I’m the slowpoke…) Ever had an experience like this? Comment below!

**Author’s note: I’ve got a surprise coming tomorrow… **

Writings About Writing – Lack of Motivation

We all suffer from a lack of motivation sometimes. If you don’t… please tell me how. (That’s the same thing I said when someone told me they didn’t backwash.)

You have to have motivation to write. Otherwise, you’ll get bored with your writing, and that’ll translate into your writing and make it boring for the readers. The best way to get motivated? In my opinion…

Write something fun.

Find a goofy prompt online, and write a short story based off of that. Try doing some stream-of-consciousness writing (writing down your thoughts). That can be really fun. Other ideas? Write about one of your funniest memories. Write a letter to your future self. Have a chat with one of your fictional characters and write it down. (I suggest that you don’t take your character out for coffee to do this interview. If you do, videotape it. Please.) Write a story in which you take a character out for coffee and get odd looks from strangers. Write a post about how to conquer a lack of motivation. This one works, guys. Trust me. 😉

There’s so many more ideas out there. There’s so many other ways, too. Lack of motivation doesn’t have to last long, and there’s plenty of different options to fix it. So get motivated!

What are some of your favorite ways to get motivated? Have you ever taken a character out to coffee? Tell me in the comments below!