San Francisco, CA
Drip... drip... drip...
Watching the small puddle of sweat forming on the concrete in front of him, John Garfield fumed. He had been at the same spot for almost an hour. Trying to get a backside 360 kickflip down a flight of 24 stairs. Finally he was taking a breather, collecting his thoughts, visualizing the move in his head. Finally he got off the bench, kicking the tail of the board and having it fly up into his hand. He glanced over at the camera man who without a word gave him a nod. Setting up the shot the camera guy gave him a thumbs up, “Alright Gar money shot right here...” He called out to him for encouragement. ‘Gar’ being the somedays-doesn’t-mind-sometimes-can’t-stand nickname John got from the media. Finally with a deep breath, John sprinted forward, hopping onto the board and giving it a few good kicks before taking off. Rotating in the air as the board spun under his feet. The concrete came quickly but getting his feet back on the grip tape John landed almost perfectly. Holding up his arms in jubilation as he screeched the wheels on the board to a stop. “YEAH!” The camera guy almost leapt from his spot, running over and giving John a mighty high five.
As he was finally able to cool down a bit John stopped to check his phone messages, there were a few, some magazines and media, some from his board sponsor of new designs, but one in particular which caught his attention. From the Oregon Zoo in Portland, Oregon. He pushed in some buttons and connected. “Hello sorry I missed your call.” John started taking a seat back on the same bench from before. “Oh no Mr. Garfield I completely understand... I’m just happy your organization is willing to help out.” The chipper sounding woman on the other end responded. “Hey anything for the cause, so what’s the situation anyways? My project manager was a bit vague on the details.” “Well we have a small group of pandas from China which we would like to bring back to their homeland. They’ve become a bit unruly and we have all the reason to believe they’re getting very homesick.” “Yeah that seems to be the case for a lot of these.” As the call continued the situation really began to stick out like a sore thumb. The fact was the Zoo wouldn’t be able to handle all the costs, hance why they would need John’s help. Problem is though, his charity organization wouldn’t really be able to handle the costs either even with the zoo’s help.
John contemplated options as he hung up the phone. Scratching the side of his nose looking out blank for a moment before the camera guy came up. “Hey uh Gar? These two dudes were looking for you.” “Why would you tell random people I’m here.” John asked still looking out, not so much irritated, more out of the wonder of something so profoundly stupid. “Well they... looked important I guess.” Sure enough the two older men, wearing suits which could only have been hand crafted, both approached John. “Hello, Mr. Garfield? My name is Jack Kirby and this is my associate Robert Livingfield. We represent an organization which would be interested in your services.” Immediately, having heard this little song and dance before, John got up and held out a hand. “Okay look, if this is a sponsorship deal I do want you guys to go through my agent first. Secondly I don’t just blindly join up with companies I don’t believe in. Thirdly...” “No no this has nothing to do with your outside endeavors.” Mr. Kirby immediately interrupted with. “So... what DOES this have to do with me?” “Well Mr. Garfield, we were more interested in utilizing your special abilities.” There was a very brief moment where John forgot what he was talking about. As crazy as it is John does forget he is actually someone ‘special’. The notion might be strange given the green skin and hair of his should make it a dead giveaway. But the truth is John doesn’t use his power very often. If he needs to move something he’ll turn into a gorilla or elephant, small things like that. But its not that big a deal to him or his friends. “Right... well what do you need?” “Basically, to keep a long story short. My company CADMUS is looking to dispose of some documents, chemicals. Things like that.” John held up his hands. “Safely and without any environmental dangers right?” “Oh of course of course. What kind of savages do you take us for?” Mr. Kirby immediately reassured the young man. “Basically we wanted to have some people keep an eye on the shipment. We’re worried our competition might try to steal some of the shipment and we feel it must be protected under any cost.”
John did give the proposal some thought, but it was brief before he shook his head. “Look, I don’t DO that superhero stuff. I’m just a skater who happens to have superpowers. I think we’re done here.” Just as John was about to leave though. Mr. Kirby stopped him, pulling out an envelope from one of the suit’s pockets. “You might want to reconsider before simply saying no.” Looking at the paper for a moment, morbid curiosity got the better of John before he snatched the envelope from the older man’s grasp. Opening it revealed a check, which when pulled out revealed an amount written out to John which made him have to seriously stop and make sure he wasn’t crazy. Mr. Kirby noticed this immediately. “Half now, half upon completion.” He made clear. To John this was not only more than enough to handle the shipping problems for his charity. It could make the organization so much bigger. Not to mention he could maybe get his parents to finally retire by dangling it in front of him. Now John had to seriously put some thought into it. Finally sighing before pocketing the check. “Alright fine, you got a deal.” John sounded slightly dejected, feeling a bit dirty for it all as he shook the older man’s hand. “Splendid, we’ll provide you with all the details. We plan on shipping out the convoys on Friday night.”