Teenager discovers a sort of super-power.
It had always seemed easy to get what he wanted. If he could get deep enough into the emotion, then whatever was desired would happen.
Growing up, Van had an ability to make some things move with his mind, but only if he was really feeling it. He couldn’t just make a glass of water come to him whenever he was thirsty, but if he was mad at something like a radio then he could make it fall off a table.
If he was feeling especially turned on and attracted to a woman, he could make her shirt open somehow. Little things, but they were enough to make him satisfied that his life was a step above everyone else’s that he saw.
Van was a decent baseball player, not great, not even very good, but decent enough to be able to play. By the time he was 14, he’d honed his talent for moving things, and he’d progressed beyond the emotional tie into being able to use it whenever he wanted.
He’d learned how to harness it while he was getting high for the first time. He figured it was after effect from the pot, but when he’d come down, he still had the control over it. He was elated because now the world was totally open to him. He could do anything he wanted, go anywhere, achieve anything.
Life was his for the taking.
At first his dreams were small, a better performance in baseball in the hopes of scouts noticing him. Girls’ skirts flying up giving him a good look at their panties. He knew in the back of his mind that these things were shenanigans in high school, but he wasn’t ready yet to figure out what to really do with this thing he could do.
Then the scouts appeared, throwing pro offers at him, and the college ones were tossing scholarships at him. Girls were interested in him because he was a sudden celebrity, and even though he banged as many as he could, he never stayed with any of them. He knew they were only there for the fame that rubs off when you’re near someone who is a big thing.
Van decided what he would do was become a pro baseball player, and make that his life. He would break records, and make the Hall of Fame, and be talked about in hushed tones as one of the all time greats.
His plan went well for almost 5 years, he breezed through 2 years of college, making his name more known with the pros, earning 2 straight All-American honors, and even being a part of a CWS championship team.
He decided to enter the pro draft at age 19, and he was picked first by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He rocketed through their pitiful farm system and was a September call-up in his first season after the draft. He exceeded their expectations and was offered a spring training invite the next year.
Van made the team out of the spring and won the Rookie of the Year award, finishing in the top 5 for MVP. He was smart with his power; he didn’t make himself hit every ball, but simply enough to be a star. He knew it still had to be believable, and to do that he’d have to miss most of the time.
He played to his own ability, which had grown considerably on its own until he started slumping, then he turned on the power and watched his slumps melt away.
Van was happy with his baseball life, and he was on his way to another rock solid year, maybe even winning the MVP when his whole world changed.
He was walking in a park near his team’s stadium on an off day, enjoying the early morning sounds and smiling at the pretty girls as they jogged by.
Daydreams of the date from the night before filled his head, the girl who was nice to him, and claimed to not know who he was until he explained it to her. He was wondering if she was the type to settle down with when a man shoved by him at a full sprint.
Van landed on his knees, and heard the woman screaming that the man had taken her baby. Van was in shock, her baby? Had purse snatching gotten too easy with crooks?
He couldn’t kneel there and let this woman’s baby disappear with this weirdo, he had to try and do something.
Van focused on the guys back, and imagined him standing right where he’d brushed by, but stuck running in place. In the blink of an eye, the dirt bag was touching shoulders with Van, feet pumping uselessly, eyes widely staring at Van, obviously trying to figure out what was happening.
Van reached out, plucked the baby from the guys arm, and handed it back to the lady, who gave him a big kiss and hurried off to talk to an approaching police officer.
Van held the guy in place until the police got there, then let him go and mumbled that he didn’t know how it had happened, he was only glad to help.
When Van got home that afternoon, he knew where his life needed to go. He could no longer be selfish with his gift and use it to play baseball. He had to try and help people with it; he had to a good guy for everyone.
Even though it seemed silly, he had his mom make him a costume, bringing her into the secret as his only confidant.
From that day forward, a masked man mysteriously appeared helping fight crime. All that anyone knew was his name, and that was all Van wanted them to know, all he wanted the crooks to know.
Vanguard was on patrol.