“You need to stop screaming. You’re causing a scene.”
She was tall with dark skin and braids that went down her back. She had piercings in her nose and along one of her eyebrows, her wrists proudly equipped with rainbow armbands. She was dressed like she had just come from the gym, and she certainly had the muscles to back it up, but none of that matter when there was a monster loose in the mall. Marianna shouted to her, “Get to safety! Don’t provoke it!”
But it was already too late. The creature set its sights on the new girl behind it and said, “Another stupid little girl who can’t keep her mouth shut.”
As foolish as Marianna thought this girl was being, she used the distraction to quietly whisper to the people behind them to start slowly walking into the store. Torrence was at the entrance and ushered the people inside, both him and Marianna working together to use the moment to their advantage.
“Come on, Dana,” Carlos whispered, but Dana wouldn’t move. She couldn’t stop staring at the monster up ahead. “Sis, please?”
“W-why aren’t they here? They’re supposed to be here.”
Marianna winced but forced herself to shove aside the curdled feeling of guilt in her stomach. “We need to get you to safety.”
“And make that woman fight by herself?!”
“I think she’ll be all right,” Kayla said.
“How can you say that?! That creature is going to tear her to shreds!”
Kayla shook her head and nodded over to the woman. She was eerily calm despite the situation, and she was now standing in a fighting stance. Fists up and ready, legs long and powerful, she was ready for a fight and wasn’t at all intimidated by the supernatural creature in front of her. “I know her,” Kayla said. “She’s in one of my classes.”
“Who is she?” Bree asked.
“Her name is Lonnie Knox. She’s a kickboxer.”
Everything that happened after that felt like someone had hit the fast-forward button. The monster shouted at Lonnie, the force coming out in a destructive wave that shattered everything in its path. Lonnie jumped out of the way, then dodged another attack, and another, making it look as easy as playing a game of hopscotch. As soon as she got close to the monster she jammed her knee into its stomach. The monster stumbled back and let out a harsh cough, but Lonnie didn’t give it a chance to recover. One punch to the face, followed by a second, and a third, all Marianna and Bree could do was stare as Lonnie continued to hit her opponent so hard that they could hear her fists crunching into its skin. Finally, Lonnie landed a swift kick across the monster’s cheek, the power in her kick so hard that the creature was knocked out cold immediately.
“Holy shit,” Bree whispered. The creature’s face was now bruised beyond recognition, and it didn’t look like it was going to get up anytime soon. She’d never actually seen one of the monsters lay lifelessly on the ground — Marianna’s acidic frosting always made quick work of them. But there it was, mouth wide open, stomach caved in from the crushing blow from earlier. Marianna looked just as bewildered as Bree, but neither girl had time to dwell on the monster in front of them. Dana was already up cheering for Lonnie, and everyone who had gone inside of the store was stepping outside to see the aftermath of the one-sided battle. The rest of the crowd joined Dana in cheering for Lonnie, who stood there and smiled an embarrassed little smile. Both Marianna and Bree looked at each other and quietly wondered the same thing.
Had Blaze sent in a new magical girl?
Also check out this companion piece that goes with this scene by Dave Branch! It will potentially appear in the book itself!