This one features two of my villain characters, both of whom are part of an international villain league called the Brotherhood of Evil (real subtle, I know, but that came directly from the DCU. Take it up with them).
Marcus made his way through the necessary checkpoints, the pat-downs, the body-scanners, DNA-tests, and all the other obnoxious high-security crap the Brotherhood had implemented at Grimoire since the attack. The towers were still highly under construction, but fortunately for Seris, the main tower was still rather intact with her office.
And fortunately for Marcus, since he had a grand total of zero cash on hand for his own personal projects.
"Okay, buddy, we turn on all the charm. We tell dear Mum all about your performance during the mission. No 'meatbag' around her, all right? We want her to like you so you can reach your full potential again. Capiche?" Marcus tipped his fedora back from his face, popping out his blue contacts as he strolled toward the elevator.
His new robot companion stared at him blankly.
Marcus massaged his crimson-colored irises. Wearing more naturally-colored contacts could be a hassle, but disguise was part of his villain gig. "...Actually, better idea. Just don't address her directly. Speak only if spoken to. Yeah. That'll work."
Marcus punched the button. While he waited for the elevator car, he took off his hat and smoothed his hair.
The elevator dinged. Doors opened. And there was Seris, in the elevator. Of course.
"You're late," Seris frowned as she stepped out of the elevator. "I told you to report to me as soon as I had returned."
Marcus smiled and bowed, hat still in hand. "I actually have a perfectly legitimate excuse for not having done so."
"Oh, I'm certain I'll just adore this," Seris sighed, rolling her eyes. "My office. Now." She shot a glance at the robot. "Is this your new pet?"
"Yes, actually. I just got back from a new day job, which is the reason I was a bit late in returning. I took him to Harroc's to boost his features after the mission, and I ended up working at her shop."
Seris glared down her nose at him and the robot, crossing her arms. "So you finally decided to do something productive, and that's supposed to make me happy, hmm? Why didn't you inform me of the change in plans?"
Marcus smiled patiently. "Mom, please. How good does it look to contacts when you show up like a Momma's boy and ask for permission to stay out past curfew?"
Seris scoffed and waved her hand, stepping back into the elevator.
"Ah, before we go... I do have a mission report to extoll to you."
Seris hovered between the doors and rubbed her temple. "I've known you since you were in my womb, Marcus. I know when you're warming up to asking for something. What is it this time?"
"Hey, hear me out. I just want to give my mission report and explain my reasoning for disobeying direct orders shortly thereafter by going to Harroc's. You want to hear that, right? And Robo here can help collaborate on the mission report. Right, pal?"
Seris rolled her eyes. "Fine. Bring the robot." Seris waved her finger and stepped into the elevator.
Photo from Unsplash.com by Ferran Fusalba
From Him, To Him