"Little Town with a Big Secret!": Bruce Wayne, Jr. and Clark Kent, Jr. continue their adventure away from home until they reach the town of Barstow, on the West of the States. Upon arriving, the young pals encounter a series of awkward
Appearing in "Little Town with a Big Secret!"
- Linda (Single appearance)
- Sweeper Wyatt (Single appearance)
- Superman (Cameo)
- Batman (Cameo)
- Bobby (Single appearance)
- Ed (Single appearance)
- O'Ryans (Flashback only)
- Gar O'Ryan
- Barstow (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "Little Town with a Big Secret!"
Bruce Wayne, Jr. and Clark Kent, Jr. continue their adventure away from home until they reach the town of Barstow, on the West of the States. Upon arriving, the young pals encounter a series of awkward things like a milk truck carrying some sort of noble gas at low temperature, the very few people of town afraid of the "Ice Man" and the local's harsh attitude towards strangers. Clark and Bruce try to get something to eat on the only opened restaurant in town, but they are attacked by some of the townsfolk. After all these strange events, they decide to use their superhero identities in order to solve the mystery in Barstow town.
Superman Jr. tries to locate the so-called milk truck, but he soon realizes that the vehicle had vanished in the middle of the road. Meanwhile, Batman Jr. investigates at the local graveyard, where he discovers three nameless graves, all dated simply 1968; and then goes to the abandoned town hall, where he finds some interesting documents. Unfortunately, he is spotted by the local Sheriff and is forced to drop his costume and pretend to be a civilian. The Sheriff doesn't buy the tale and he arrests Bruce Jr., taking him to the local jail. Clark visits Bruce at the jail, but they are both locked inside by the Sheriff, who is clearly against having strangers in town. The young partners try to deduce what is the big mystery, but before they could find an answer, they notice that the Sheriff and his men have captured Linda, the young waitress at the local restaurant and are taking her to the Ice Man. Clark bends the prison bars and in a matter of seconds, both heroes are out of jail. Clark becomes Superman, Jr. and follows the Sheriff's car to the same spot where the milk truck disappeared. Finally, Superman Jr. realizes that the vehicles have been reaching an underground basement in the middle of the road and as he breaks inside the secret place, Superman Jr. finds a large chamber filled with cryogenic equipment and cryogenic tubes with all the people of Barstow inside them. Superman Jr. tries to prevent Linda from being frozen by the Sheriff and a scientist, but he is frozen and locked in a tube as well.
Meanwhile, Batman Jr. continues his investigation in Barstow and finally finds a well-hidden, strange, shining object. At that moment, Batman Jr. comes across the restaurant's owner, Sweeper Wyatt, who shows no good intentions to Batman for having discovered the town's secret. Sweeper proceeds to explain that the strange object is a spaceship belonging to three human-looking aliens from the constellation Orion who settled in Barstow a few years back. When the townsfolk learned about this, they went one night to confront the aliens, who called themselves the O'Ryans, and learned that the aliens had no choice but to remain on Earth until their ship was repaired. They explained that it would take until 1994 before that happened and they hoped to be welcomed by the Earthlings until their departure, also promising the townsfolk a reward of immense riches contained within their spaceship when it was repaired. However, the people from Barstow panicked and torched the O'Ryans' house out of fear, killing the peaceful aliens. The people decided to keep the events of that night a secret and everyone in town decided to disappear using cryo-technology until the time was right and the ship was repaired.
After learning the mystery behind everything in Barstow, Batman is taken to the underground basement, where the only people left are the Ice Man and the Sheriff. Sweeper wants them to freeze Batman as well, but Batman informs them that the spaceship is about to finish its self-repair this year, not 1994 (Mr. O'Ryan having miscalculated the strength of Earth's magnetic fields), and that Sweeper has double-crossed the entire town in order to get the secret treasure for himself. When the truth is revealed, Sweeper's plan is thwarted and then entire people of Barstow is thawed out of their cryogenic tubes. As they return to Barstow, the spaceship activates, fully repaired, but it flies away without leaving any treasure behind. With the mystery solved, the people of Barstow return to their daily activities and Sweeper disappears without trace, now a discredited wanderer, but some among them are still baffled by the mysterious disappearance of the young strangers.
Finally, Clark, Jr. and Bruce, Jr. get going on to their next adventure.
- The story is divided in three chapters:
- "Little Town with a Big Secret"
- "The People Without Shadows"
- "Children of the Universe"
- The O'Ryan family do not cast shadows and, strangely, neither do their nameless tombstones in Barstow's graveyard.
- The O'Ryans appear to have taken their name from the constellation Orion where they come from.
- Gar O'Ryan was the boyfriend of Linda, the cook at Sweeper Wyatt's restaurant, who has a black and white photograph of the pair of them, signed TO LINDA, LOVE GAR O'RYAN, on the wall behind the counter. Clark Jr. notices with his telescopic vision that in the photo, Linda has a shadow, but Gar doesn't.
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