Clark Kent slumped on the couch in his new apartment, watching T.V.
“I gotta call him,” said Jerry through the tiny speaker.
“You gotta call him,” agreed Elaine.
“Gotta call him,” Jerry said again.
Suddenly the image snapped away, replaced instantly by a somber but excited announcer.
“We interrupt this program for an important breaking news story.”
Clark straightened himself and listened.
“A gun man is holding two children hostage at 8 Madison Street, a private residence in Merrick, Long Island. He is threatening to kill them in exactly three minutes, if his demand for one hundred million dollars in cash is not met. Authorities say there is no way they can come up with that kind of money within that deadline. We switch you now to our live on the spot reporter…”
Clark stood up.
“This looks like a job for…” He pulled open his shirt, revealing a familiar S shaped shield. “Superman!”
He tore down his trousers and pulled off his shoes. Then he opened the window wide, stepped on to the ledge, jumped up and flew away at top speed. His cape trailed behind him as he sped through the air. His jaw was set and his lips made a determined frown. He would right this wrong, he would protect the innocent.
After a few seconds, his expression changed. His face slackened, and he slowed to a stop, hovering in the air, a few blocks from his building.
“Um,” he said to himself, “let’s see… This is Brooklyn, right? Merrick’s on Long Island… So that means I better go East.” He looked around and spotted the New York City skyline to his left. “O.K., that’s the city, so that’s West… So if I fly in the other direction, that should be East, right? O.K.”
He shot off to his right at full speed.
A few seconds later, he slowed down again.
“Damn! Where the hell am I going?”
The Man of Steel reached into his cape and, from a well concealed flap, pulled out a map of New York City and its environs. Hovering uncertainly in the air, he tried to unfold it, but the wind played havoc with his plans. Painstakingly fighting for each fold, he was finally able to smooth it against his chest. He gingerly gripped each side and held it out a foot in front of him.
“Merrick, where’s Merrick… Oh damn!”
Cursing under his breath he very carefully turned it over and scanned the alphabetical list of towns on the back.
“Massapequa… Massapequa Park… Merrick! Section B-12.”
The Last Son of Krypton turned the map over again and moved his index finger along the horizontal edge.
“O.K…. B… There’s 9, 10, 11… 12! O.K… Now where’s… Oh, Merrick, great! There it is. O.K., now, how do I get there from here?” Using his amazing microscopic vision, he deciphered the tiny numbers and letters on the map. “It looks like that’s the Expressway…how can I find that?”
The Man of Tomorrow looked down at the dark Brooklyn streets. He scanned the area, until he found what he was searching for.
“I think that’s the Belt Parkway… Let me see, that’ll take me to the Van Wyck, and I’m pretty sure that goes into the Expressway. O.K….”
He struggled to refold the map. Even his superhuman senses of balance and coordination were of no use. In the end he crumpled it into a ball and shoved it back into his cape.
“Now then… Up, up and… uh… oh, I guess I’m already up… Uh, well… Over, over and away!”
The strange visitor from another planet, endowed with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men, flew off, tracing the route of the Belt Parkway, determined to win another skirmish in his never ending battle.
“I hope I can find the street address,” he mumbled.