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There was panic. Chaos. People ran blindly, cried, screamed; some fell to their knees in prayer. The world seemed to be ending around them. The giant statue that symbolised hope to all of them had fallen, and the buildings around them were crumbling.

In the midst of it all, an old woman stood up. Her hair had lost its colour many years before, but the purple star on her top was still bright.

“Come on then,” she muttered, defiantly looking up at the enemy.

There was a polite cough behind her shoulder; she looked around. An old couple stood there; a petite and kindly woman who had once been blonde and her husband, denying his age with slightly faded punk rock clothes and a familiar big grin.

“You’re not doing this without us, Morgana,” he said.

She smiled and nodded a greeting. “Vox Doom. Ibuprofen. Wouldn’t dream of leaving you behind.”

Ibuprofen held up her phone. “I took the liberty of making a few calls,” she said.

The sky behind her darkened, but this time people didn’t scream, didn’t run. They pointed to the sky, to the heroes flying in and leaping over tall buildings to reach them. They pointed to the streaks of light as super-fast beings raced towards them.

“Look! There’s Maiden Britain,” one cried. “And Fight Girl!”

“Silver Belle,” came a shout.

“Major Triumph!”

“Lucy and Polly Nation!”

“Miss Mentis!”

“Benn Zinn and Feuer Frau!”

“Miss Awesome!”

“Mister Wonderful!”

“Miss Extraordinary!”

An elderly civilian nearby stared at the massed union of heroes and then at the aged Morgana Fiolett in disbelief.

“I thought you had all retired?”

Morgana smiled as she hovered up off the ground.

“True heroes never retire,” she said. “We’ll always be here for you.”

© Kari Fay

(Author’s Note: I generally try to avoid posting fan fiction here, but this evening I heard the quite frankly devastating news (to me at least) that City of Heroes, the MMO which I have played for some six or seven years and which has been a gigantic part of my life for that time, is to close. A glimpse, then, into the future that these characters and many others in Paragon City will no longer have. A tribute.)

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