I crashed on my bed as soon as I got home. My body was tired, not only from forcing myself to jog, but the cold itself. My sinuses weren't doing too well either. I tried a hot shower and relaxing on the couch, once I realized Kieran wasn't in the apartment. It helped some. The cold seemed to be almost gone, thankfully. Machinas liked to routinely freeze me and, while it was infuriating, it gave me a pretty good immune system.
My phone buzzing brought me out of my head. I checked the screen and saw George's face staring at me from the smart phone. Now he calls?
"How's my favorite-"
"Why wasn't I called yesterday?" I snapped. I regretted it the instant I did, but didn't apologize.
"Look, Grav," George said, his voice going serious, "We both know that by the time the police arrived, that guy was long gone. And if it WAS Machinas..."
"I didn't think he would strike again so soon. Must be trying to rebuild his lab..."
"Probably," George agreed. "What we do know is that the money he took was handled poorly by the bank. He probably knew that or somehow did that himself."
"What do you mean?" Handled poorly?
"Means that it's untraceable, Grav."
"Figures." I blew my nose and stretched out on the couch. Felt good to relax. Could be the after effects of my power or the jog or even the damn cold. I'm gonna kick Machinas next time I see him. In the head. I just hoped he was at least bruised up.
"On the bright side, the bank didn't lose more than they can recover from." He seemed to be pleased it was just this, but I was still annoyed. Bank robberies or robot attacks were both marks against my name since I was protecting this city.
"I'll bring him in next time."
"That's the spirit!" George was always too positive. Probably the effect of having a three year old daughter. I should visit her sometime. Cute kid. "Anyway, I was just calling to let you know the gangs have been talking and there might be trouble next Monday."
When classes start. Great. "I'll see what I can do."
"Police should be able to handle anything if Tony's guys are involved but..." George trailed off. "Sorry, I keep forgetting you have a private life." He laughed, and I wanted to fly over and punch him. "Anyway, thought I should give you a heads up. Machinas is still our number one target, though."
"Yeah, of course. I'll start looking" - once again - "for his new place and actually bring him in. I managed to destroy his main robot and equipment so it shouldn't be hard."
"Good to hear! I'll catch ya later, then, Grav!" And then he hung up, not even waiting for me to tell him goodbye. Luckily for him, I'm the good guy.
I sighed and stood up, ignoring my bodies cries to stay down, and walked over to my bedroom to study a bit more. I had a few more days to finish up first semester's material. Dad better be happy about my grades, dammit.
I wanted to nap again, making me wonder just how much of my powers had been used fighting Machinas. Well, I guess I did fly around for over two hours straight before getting to the lab. The guy was cautious, though not enough. Hopefully I could find him again.
The door to the apartment opened some time later, admitting Kieran by the sound of the footsteps and bringing me out of focusing on some equations. Well, it better not be anyone else.
Now, the question... Should I be social?
I walked out of my room to see Kieran walking towards his door. "Oh, you're back."
He stopped and looked back at me, hand on his door as he was going to unlock it. Had he been shopping? Those bags were from a clothing store somewhere. "Yeah. Didn't know you were home."
"Got back a few hours ago."
"Alright." He turned back to his door and began fumbling with his keys.
I sighed. Can't believe I was doing this, but I did want to get to know the man I was having to share an apartment with. "I want some food. You hungry?"
Kieran gave me a curious look. "What you got?"
I thought of my cabinets that were much more akin to a going out of business store. "Not much. Probably need to go shopping soon. I was thinking we could go out and grab something."
He turned around and looked at me with an interested look. "You have any place in mind?"
I thought of Pearl Kitchen. "There's a nice restaurant down the street from here. Cheap, but not fast food cheap."
"That sounds, well, not completely unpleasant," he said, making me want to kick him. In the face. Maybe it was my sinuses making me snappy, though. "We can go there, let me just drop off this stuff first." He hefted his shopping bags a little. How much had he bought?
I tried to keep my expression pleasant, and succeeded until he walked into his room, and left to grab my shoes. I was wearing one of my shirts with a funny picture - this one a muffin talking to another muffin - and jeans already, at least. It was good enough for a second rate restaurant.
I walked out of my room and found Kieran leaning against his doorway, waiting on me. He looked much nicer than me with his button down shirt, not that I cared.
"You going out in that?" he asked, a slight smile of amusement on his face.
"I was thinking about it." What was wrong with my clothes?
Kieran just shook his head and grabbed something from the dresser in his room before closing the door and locking it. "You coming or what?" he said, walking towards the door.
Keep your head on. "Yeah, yeah."
I then noticed, somehow, that he was also carrying a motorcycle helmet. "We'll take my bike." Kieran offered his helmet over as they walked down the hallway.
Oh yeah, he had a motorcycle... Wait, that meant... "Um... not too sure I'm OK with that."
"It's just a helmet, Liz."
"That's not what I meant!" Geez, did he have no common sense or did he just want to push my buttons.
"Fine," Kieran said, leading the way towards the parking lot and a black motorcycle that I could help but openly admire. He sat down and put the key in. "If you want to walk six blocks, be my guest." The motorcycle started up, making shivers run down my spine. Was I a biker chick now? No, of course not. Just a nice bike.
I hated it, but I had already ran more than that this morning with this stupid cold. My body was protesting anything that didn't involve sitting, too. I sighed and gave in, putting the helmet on and getting on the back of the bike.
"If we wreck," I told him, trying not to shiver, "I'm using you as a landing pad."
Kieran laughed and revved the engine, any words he might have said lost in the motorcycle taking off down the road. I managed to wrap my arms around Kieran and hang on tight. I was going to kill him when we got off this thing.
Then, I might ask for another ride. It wasn't quite as fun as flying, but... It was something.