"Kicking the Dog": Amidst the wreckage of a city street, Superman lifts a car above his head and demands to know why Barrage is back in Metropolis. The battered supervillain struggles to answer, but not quickly enough for Superman. He slams the automobile down into the pavement, and into the sh
Appearing in "Kicking the Dog"
Synopsis for "Kicking the Dog"
Amidst the wreckage of a city street, Superman lifts a car above his head and demands to know why Barrage is back in Metropolis. The battered supervillain struggles to answer, but not quickly enough for Superman. He slams the automobile down into the pavement, and into the shocked Barrage. Reaching into the wreckage, Superman rips Barrage out of the remains of the car. He succinctly informs Barrage that all of Metropolis is under his protection. Then, to give Barrage an idea of what this entails, Superman hurls the villain hundreds of feet into the air and across the city. A concerned woman yells that Barrage will die, but Superman merely dismisses the idea. Barrage does wear armor after all. The owner of the car then approaches Superman about the damage done to his car, but Superman dismisses his complaints, by willing to just burn his autograph into the wreckage so that he'll be able to sell it online.
Across the city, three armed men dash out of a bank. The security guard in pursuit fires one, before a bullet hits him in the chest and sends him flying backwards through a window. Another shot strikes a nearby woman and child, both caught standing in the wrong place at the wrong time. They both fall to the sidewalk. One of the crooks celebrates his aim, when he is suddenly jerked into the sky. Superman asks him if he has ever heard of instant karma, and then hurtles him across the street and into a store front. The other two men unload a clip at the Man of Steel, and then frantically jump into their car. Superman touches down in front of the car, and after reminding the two men about seat-belts, picks up the car and sends it sailing a few hundred feet before it crashes into a new apartment complex.
Inside the Daily Planet, Lois talks on the phone with someone when Jimmy suddenly runs. He tells her that Superman is on a rampage, trashing bad guys and private property, and making jokes while doing it.
In a hospital, Superman listens as the doctor gives his prognosis. The security guard probably died immediately, and the mother and boy probably won't survive. There is nothing the doctor can do for them. Superman says there is never anything anyone can do. Enraged, Superman speeds out of the hospital. Lois arrives late to catch up on Superman. She then ask a nurse about Superman, which she is at first hesitant to talk to Lois, but then she caves in.
Somewhere, a tattooed metahuman named Trainwreck hurls an unfortunate soul out of a third story window and into the payment. Stepping forward into the breach in the glass and holding a gun up to a girl's head, he yells that he wants a helicopter or he will continue to kill. He is suddenly silenced as he sees Superman speeding toward him. The Man of Steel slams into the villain, forcing him back into the building and setting off a huge explosion. The entire building is engulfed in flames as police and firefighters run for cover. As the flames die down, Superman compliments Trainwreck on his power. But before he can do anything else Superman darts forward and grabs him by the head, and proceeds to slam the villain through a series of walls before emerging outside and slamming him into the side of a car. Trainwreck yells that he surrenders, but Superman just says that people like him never do.
Lois follows the nurse into a children's cancer ward as the woman tells her that Superman comes to visit at least once a month to help cheer up the kids. Lois asks to see the homeless girl named Jamie, the one that was his biggest fan. The nurse looks toward the ground and says that Jamie is no longer with them.
Superman continues to decimate Trainwreck. He demands to know how, with all of the deaths in the world, a monster like him continues to live. Lifting the bloodied villain off of the ground, he demands to know where the justice is in a world like that. With his eyes blazing, Superman leans towards him when Lois suddenly calls out to him. She tells him that she knows about Jamie and that it doesn't make much sense, but Superman cuts her off. It makes no sense that evil people continue to live while a young girl would die. He is silent for a moment, before telling Lois that the police had found Jamie in a cardboard box under an overpass. An abandoned girl with a terminal illness could find joy in life, and yet someone like Trainwreck lives. He drops the unconscious villain to the ground and asks why.
That night, Lois and Clark embrace in their apartment, but he can only ask why.
- This book was first published on November 6, 2002.
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