Thom Kallor was frowning as he made his way down in Legion of Super-Heroes Headquarters toward a cruiser dock. Star Boy was brooding over the way things had been going for him of late.
I don’t get it, he thought. Just when I was getting ready to run for re-election as team leader, Nura had to turn icy. Last time I ran for leader, she was miffed because she wanted the job herself, but she moved past that feeling and helped me greatly in an unofficial way during this term. Maybe she’s angry because she has seen the outcome of the upcoming election in a dream, and I lost!
The bearded young man stopped in his tracks as he heard joyful cries, and as he rounded a corner, he saw the source of the noise.
A lovely woman with long brown hair and intelligent eyes was embracing a slightly stiff Brainiac 5. Nearby, a plump man with black hair and a broad smile watched happily, along with a pretty girl with short dark hair and an interested expression on her face. Star Boy smiled in recognition and hurried forward to greet his old friends.
Bouncing Boy and Duo Damsel were Legionnaires of long standing who had taken formal leave in order to help Luornu Durgo Taine recover from an ordeal she had suffered after being abducted by a strange obsessive genius. (*) The married couple seemed happy, healthy, and glad to be back on Earth. Thom knew Brainiac 5 was equally pleased to see them, in spite of the Coluan’s rather shy manner.
[(*) Editor’s note: See Legion of Super-Heroes: Triad of Terror.]
“Chuck, Lu, welcome back!” said Thom. “You two look terrific!”
The brown-haired Luornu smiled and leaned forward to plant a kiss on Star Boy’s cheek. “Thanks, Thom!” she said. “We’re happy to be home again! Our vacation did us some good, but we missed you all. We also missed working with the Legion Academy kids!”
Star Boy nodded at the Legionnaire-turned-teacher and said, “Wildfire will be turning cartwheels when he sees you. You know how much he loves his freedom! Even though he has a real bond with the pupils at the Legion Academy, he was chafing at the bit to drop some of his duties there.”
Chuck Taine placed one plump hand on his wife’s back and said, “Thom, the academy kids aren’t the only youngsters we’re excited about seeing. We’re expecting a baby!”
Star Boy glanced back at the beaming Luornu and said, “Congratulations!”
Brainiac 5 smiled as well and said, “Let me concur! Parenting will be a fascinating challenge for you both. I know any child would be fortunate to share your genetic combination. Lu, Chuck, this is my friend, Marlo Latham. (*) I was just giving her a tour of our headquarters. She has several common scientific interests with me.”
[(*) Editor’s note: See Legion of Super-Heroes: World War, Chapter 3: Raid on Brande’s Asteroid.]
Lu grinned mischievously and said, “Brainy’s got a girlfriend!”
Marlo laughed and said, “That’s right! I’m glad to hear someone say it! If I waited for this guy to speak up, we’d all be ready for retirement before our first kiss!”
Brainiac 5 frowned in consternation and said, “Be that as it may, I’d better finish the tour. After all, showing Marlo the intricacies of Computo’s spatial modification program could take a long time.” He led Marlo away, leaving Star Boy alone with the Taines.
“It’s a real pleasure to have you two back,” said Star Boy as he squeezed Lu’s hand and slapped Chuck on the shoulder. “I know you’ll be great parents!”