As far as I’m concerned, the most dangerous words in the English language are “I’m putting together a team.” When you’ve been on as many teams as I have, anyway, you start to see the patterns, and Parvati was falling into them already. If she was serious about this she’d already renewed her subscription at the Power Pages (powerpages.su since Dash Industries bought the domain off the Russians).
Putting together a team isn’t much different from putting together a garage band. You figure out what you want it to be, more or less, and then you make the pieces fit. A small shit-kicking outfit, the kind almost everybody who’s got the talent spent five minutes in between high school and college, is your classic punk trio. Four piece ensembles, five man bands, sextets - those are bread and butter, plug-and-play assemblies. get a flier, a speedster, a bruiser, a psychic, a long-range specialist, and someone who can do stealth; you’ve got your bases covered. It’s an easy arrangement. Missing one or two beats will give you a vulnerability but it won’t get you killed. Seven or more, you start actually needing logistics, tactics, *real talent.* And a bigger outfit needs at least the kind of budget, organisation, and stubborn skill a symphony orchestra does. If you’ve never run a symphony orchestra, don’t even try it. Heroes are volatile divas, even worse than first violinists.
If, on the other hand, she wasn’t serious (and I was praying she wasn’t serious), she would have just called her best friend and her ex-boyfriend and turned on the police scanner. I crossed my fingers. “Have you talked to Hotshot yet?”
She looked at me like I was crazy, and my heart sank. “Brandon’s uninsurable,” she said after a moment, like she was irritated she had to remind me. “Nobody would underwrite us with him anywhere near the team.”
If she was talking insurance and sponsorship already, I was way past too late. She was really serious; more serious than she’d been about grad school.