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FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY – “Give a Little Thanks” (Part Three) – by Shannon Muir

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Debra watched John nervously look down at Los Angeles spreading out below him as they headed toward Culver City, where Debra’s grandmother, Elsie Carmichael Stokes, lived.

“What do you think?” Debra told him, looking in his sweet and yet slightly petrified eyes. “Isn’t this amazing?”

“Um, yeah, it is,” he admitted. “But I don’t know how much longer I can take this. I’m not as used to it as you are.”

“Oh, sorry, I hadn’t thought about that. We’re here now. Hang on.”

Debra touched down on her Grandma Elsie’s lawn, trying not to lose her balance as she set John down She still didn’t have a lot of practice flying with people. Once John got to his feet and brushed off, Debra knocked on the door. It slowly opened to reveal Debra’s Grandma Elsie, looking as old as a late in life mother to her. The slowed aging process side effect was one thing that Debra looked forward to, especially if she stayed half as young as Elsie.

“Debra! John! Is everything okay?”

Debra noticed her grandmother looked a bit panicked.

“Really, Grandma Elsie, it’s all right. I was just checking on when I could stop by for Thanksgiving, and if you would be ok with me bringing any of my friends this year.”

Elsie’s expression changed from panic to one of surprise. Debra couldn’t figure out what would throw her Grandma Elsie so much about seeing if her friends could join them. After all, it wasn’t as if she didn’t know then.

“Oh dear,” Elsie said. “Your mother said she wouldn’t be coming, so I thought that meant both of you. I made other plans.”

“Then unmake them!” demanded Debra.

Elsie put a hand on her granddaughter’s shoulder.

“I wish it were that easy, sweetie. When looked like you wouldn’t be coming, I made arrangements to spend Thanksgiving with Speedstar. You remember meeting him, right sweetie?”

“Speedstar?” Debra heard John ask, puzzled. She hadn’t mentioned the older hero to the others.

“He’s another hero from back in Grandma’s time. You might have seen him doing car commercials?”

John snapped his fingers.

“Oh, yeah, the Speedstar X7X. How could I forget?”

“Guess that means the ads don’t work then if you can’t remember him,” Debra snapped at John, and then returned her attention to Elsie.

“Why would you hang with Speedstar over your own family?”

“Because he doesn’t have anyone, sweetie, after that villian’s car bomb destroyed his home and killed his wife and children. Sometimes, it’s those people who need us most this time of year,” Debra’s Grandma Elsie reminded her. “I’d just invite everyone over here, but Speedstar is a real private person outside of doing the commercials. That’s all because he needs the money to survive. Please understand.”

Debra seethed inside.

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