The whole bird theme had been a joke, really. Cardinal’s joke, specifically. None of us found it funny, but it’s not like the rest of us had any better ideas. He’d said if we were going to be superheroes, we should stick to a theme, some sort of iconography people could instantly recognize. He settled on the bird idea when he was trying to think of how to fit us into primary colors.
I thought that was really weird, honestly. I vaguely remember from my old comics that hero teams tended to consist of more specialized characters; you’d have your strong guy, your energy guy, your space alien tech guy, your one animal themed character, a wizard, and a mad scientist. Or something like that. And their colors were usually not coordinated, since most teams consisted of people who already had their own solo comics, and thus had their own style independent of the others.
I later found out Cardinal was a huge fan of those goofy Japanese hero-team shows. Still was, even though he was in his mid-thirties. The kind of show where a handful of teenagers all got their powers from sci-fi wristwatches or magic amulets or something. Say a phrase, hit a button, and poof, they’re covered in fabulous spandex and bike helmets, each one a specific color. They’d all have the identical powers of knowing martial artists and shooting laser guns. Also, they had giant robots.