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From Issue #6 December 20, 2012

Everyday Superheroes

The mask isn’t coming off any time soon.

By Serenity Caldwell Twitter icon App.net icon 

Everyday Superhero by Jacob Souva

Illustration by Jacob Souva.

Four nights a week, I disappear for hours at a time, leaving Serenity Caldwell behind. She isn’t much use where I go. Those I associate with know me only by a pseudonym; I am costumed beyond recognition. I step into a different life as I don new garb and fly down concrete floors. I get beat up. I perform feats Serenity would marvel at. And then I transform back into myself and head to bed.

The next day, I nurse new and unusual aches in unexpected places. “No,” I tell the concerned CVS cashier awkwardly eyeing three finger-shaped marks on my forearm, “I’m not in any trouble at home.” But that’s all I can say. All I can ever say. Because, really, how do you tell someone that you’ve become a superhero?

Growing up, most kids wish for masks and superpowers. Not me. My kid self would have been delighted to wake up one day and find herself with Jedi powers; I always fancied being the brains rather than the brawn. Not that we ever get what we want.

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