We all know how difficult dating can be, but things in Valor City get a little more complicated when you factor in our ever-growing community of Extra-Humans. Understandably these super-powered individuals like keeping their secret identities just that – secret – but that means the cute barista who made you afforget your affogato or the suave exec who stole your heart in the elevator might be hiding a sinister secret.
Fortunately, the team here at VCV Magazine have put together an essential checklist for determining whether your sweetheart’s a super-scoundrel – so let’s get started!
1 – Frequent, sudden, unexplained departures
Does your date like to dash off with nary a word of explanation, only to reappear at any time from minutes to hours later, reluctant to offer details of their whereabouts? Do they dress up in heavy armor and tell you they’re going to a re-enactment but you’ve checked the local events schedule and there are no re-enactments today? Careful – they might be up to no good! It’s possible your paramour is sneaking off to attend to some devious deed. Even if they’re not a supervillain, do you really want to put up with this kind of behaviour?
2 – Is that blood, or just ketchup?
If it looks like your S.O. has a penchant for kitchen faux-pas on clean linen, have you stopped to ask them if that really *is* ketchup on their t-shirt? Of course, any supervillain worth their salt would be a top-notch liar, but pay careful attention to their face when they answer you. Get to know their tells, and you’ll have an easier time telling if they’re lying to you or not. Or, y’know, just sniff the stain. If it smells of copper and is accompanied by the faint whiff of death and/or destruction, it’s probably not ketchup.
3 – Wardrobe Malfunction!
Are you often upstaged by your flame’s flamboyant fashion, or conversely, down-staged by their drab decor? Take a peek in your lover’s wardrobe: if the contents are a little less hipster-casual and a little more battlefield-grunge, you might have a problem. Check for bullet holes and hastily patched knife-rips in fabric, and invest in a blacklight for picking up those tiny specks of blood and guts that just don’t wash out. If you’ve got access to their crib, check every nook and cranny for surprises – if that beautiful antique footlocker at the bottom of the bed is home to a small arsenal, get out while you still can.
4 – Attitude Check
We all have our bad days, but supervillains have so many that instead of seeing a shrink like the rest of us, they turn to MDK (Murder-Death-Kill). Be careful – if your partner goes postal at the slightest pressure and refuses to talk about what meds they’re on, it might be because they get their stress relief by exploding some heads with their freaky brainwaves. If you ever see them approaching you with their hands behind their back as if hiding a gift, run – run and don’t look back – it’s probably not flowers.
5 – Egomaniac
Anyone who turns to The Dark Side in the way that supervillains do have one thing in common – egos bigger than V-Man’s biceps. If they spend inordinate amounts of time trawling the tellybox looking for news, buy every single magazine and newspaper and tabloid to scour over the latest headlines, they might be checking if they’re getting the press attention they deserve. If this is coupled with a display of barely contained rage whenever a particular SuperHero is mentioned, it’s time to GTFO!
6 – Wait, did you just…?
Can your lover levitate? Turn invisible? Are they inordinately strong? Do they somehow always manage to enter the room without you hearing, or over-react with immense paranoia when you manage to sneak up on them? Do you often find them in improbable situations, like walking on the ceiling or re-growing an amputated limb? I think you see where we’re going with this.
7 – So familiar!
Ever had one of those ‘Wait, just hold that up to your face again…’ moments with your other half? If they remind you of someone, if you can’t shake that nagging feeling that you’ve seen them somewhere before, it might be because they’re the latest big bad that’s been terrorizing Valor City. Try to picture them in various masks and hoods – you might be in for a shocking revelation.
If you’ve marked a big red tick next to just one item on this list, you should be concerned. But don’t worry! Valor City has as many SuperHeroes as SuperVillains – maybe next time you’ll get lucky, eh?