Friday, June 28, 2013


Brenda A. Harris
Word Count: 346
Anthology yes
Girl Inc.

Name of female superhero:  Jasmine Snodgrass

Superhero Appearance (hair, eyes, body type, etc.): straight black hair, black eyes, slender, confident.

Human alter ego appearance (if she has an alter ego): frail, lacking confidence, unkempt 

Costume: Hoody, Camp Counselor T-shirt, jeans, sneakers.

Personality:  Quiet, kind, resourceful, and at times gloomy

Brief description of how the superheroine gets her powers:  She thinks God made a mistake when she was born, because her life is *lousy*.  At her lowest point, God directs her to interview for a job as counselor at a "Special Needs" summer camp - a job she knows she is hopelessly under qualified for.

Powers: God gives her the power of suggestion.  She can influence lives by implanting thoughts.  With certain people (she doesn't know why), she is even able to manipulate their actions. 

Anything else important:  She tries to do good, but at times she lashes out in fear and anger causing her power to be manipulated by evil forces.

The bus, crammed with kids and counselors, held her captive.  Jasmine shifted her gaze to her T-shirt and traced the words Camp Counselor.  A new start. 

She looked out the window, but her eyes saw only her reflection.  A failure.  Maybe this time.  Maybe this job.   Turning away, she looked before her at the rows of heads bobbing to the rhythm of the bus.

Her bangs made her eyes itch, but she held her gaze.  Six rows in front, she saw Mikey, a young man, begin to cry.  "Momma, Momma..." The wailing grew louder.  He punched his body and pummeled his head.  "Momma!"

His counselor tried soothing him.  "It's okay,  Mikey.  Everything's okay."  Mikey stood up.  Chest heaving, red face wet, and with arms swinging,he bellowed, "Momma." 

He resembled a frightened bull, and he was strong enough to do serious injury, mused Jasmine.  She watched as counselors tried to placate him, but Mikey was oblivious to their words. 

“What did Mikey truly need?” she wondered. Jasmine pictured Mikey's  mother.  Perhaps, she loved him dearly.  Perhaps, she was the only world he knew, and now he felt alone without her.  Who would comfort him and erase his fears? Who could replace his mother? Not Jasmine!  Her face pained at the thought of her ineptitude. 

Jasmine took another look at her reflection and breathed deeply.  She remembered.  God had swaddled her with love despite her sorry life.  Hope rose.  If God's love was a father's love,  could she send Mikey motherly love? 

Cementing her gaze on Mikey's head, she imagined passing her hands over his tussled hair.  "There, there Mikey,  I'm here," she whispered.  In her lap, her hands began a gentle soothing motion.  They smoothed his hair, wiped his tears, and in her mind she hugged him.

Six rows up, the autistic young man slumped back into his seat; his soft voice responding to her invisible caresses. "Momma.  Momma."  He touched his head mimicking her strokes and sighed.

Jasmine turned to stare at her glass image.  Dear God!  What power have you given me?  Is this why I’m here?