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An Unimportant Matter

Posted by meekrat on September 24, 2010

It was the early nineties, and Mister Lucky, famed member of the Basset Hound Brigade, found himself tied to a chair. He was quite surprised, as this sort of thing hadn’t happened in decades. Since he was a rookie, in fact, just starting out in the adventuring business. A cold shiver went up his spine as he realized that he was genuinely surprised by this turn of events. While to the world at large he was the Luckiest Man in the World, he was actually the smartest man who ever lived, and had long been able to extrapolate what would happen to him using his excessive intelligence. Surprise was something that no longer happened to him. As he tried to free himself from his bonds, he felt his finger brush against another finger, followed by a low groan. Another surprise. It was not a very good day.

Mister Lucky tried to turn to look at his fellow prisoner, but whoever tied him to the chair knew darn well that a knot had to be tied ungodly tight to trap Mister Lucky. He settled on whispering, “Hey there, I’m Mister Lucky, and today’s your lucky day, because I’m going to get us out of this mess! But wait, there’s more! When I find out who did this, I’ll kick his teeth in!”

He waited a few moments for the other prisoner to respond, and when he did, Mister Lucky instantly recognized the voice of Shoshy Raphael, “Not my lucky day if I’m stuck here with you.”

“Sure it is. You’re some Detroit councilman, you’re on the straight and narrow! It’s my job to save people like you, long as you don’t try to kill me first,” said Mister Lucky, “Now let’s see about getting out of here.”

A light went on, momentarily blinding Mister Lucky. He bet it did the same to Shoshy Raphael, and another groan confirmed this. As his eyes adjusted, he saw a figure standing in the shadows.

“You’re awake. Good. I was getting bored,” said the figure, “My name is unimportant, but my message is quite important.”

“Well then, Unimportant, give us the message and let us go on our way,” said Mister Lucky, smiling wryly.

“I’m not stupid,” said Unimportant, “For too long, you and your kind have been a cancer upon this world. Adventurers and costumed heroes and the like running around thinking they’re better than the average man. I’ve taken the liberty of reuniting the Basset Hound Brigade and Nantucket Dragon Group, or at least those I could find, and there’s quite the surprise waiting for all of you once you’re out of here.”

“What kind of surprise?” slurred Shoshy Raphael, probably coming off the effects of some sort of drug.

“If I told you, then it wouldn’t be a surprise, now would it?” said Unimportant, “In five minutes, I’m sure you’ll both be free. Then you’ll find out what the surprise is.”

The light went off and a door opened. Mister Lucky’s mind and hands began to race.

“He didn’t gloat,” said Mister Lucky.

“So,” said Shoshy Raphael.

“Villains gloat. It’s what they do,” Mister Lucky managed to free one of his hands and began work on the other, “So either he’s not a villain, or… I don’t know.”

Shoshy Raphael sat straight up, “You don’t know?”

“Why’s that so surprising,” said Mister Lucky, freeing his other hand and working on the other bonds, “I’m the World’s Luckiest Man, not the smartest one.”

Shoshy slouched, “Yes. Of course. Are you almost free?”

Mister Lucky stood up and began untying Shoshy Raphael, “Sure am! Sit tight, councilman, I’ll get you out of here in a jiffy.”

A minute and twenty seconds later, Shoshy Raphael stood up. Neither he nor Mister Lucky looked a day older than they had in the nineteen-twenties, owing their longevity and youthfulness to a mystical dragon ring and an immortality serum, respectively. Mister Lucky closed his eyes and turned on the light. The door was open, at once inviting and menacing.

“I’m not looking forward to this surprise,” spat Mister Lucky, making his way to the door regardless. He looked out and saw a dimly-lit warehouse, and not a very good one, either. There was a catwalk connecting several second-story rooms and an empty floor. No boxes at all. In addition to a normal door, there were two loading docks.

Shoshy Raphael joined him at the doorway and peeked out, holding his ivory cane in front of him, “No boxes? What is this world coming to?”

“I know,” said Mister Lucky, “Back in the good old days, you made sure there were boxes to buckle swashes off of and all that.”

“Remember the Charleston Death Ray,” asked Shoshy Raphael, “You almost didn’t make it out of that one.”

“I think that was your most fiendish plan,” said Mister Lucky, almost smiling.

Shoshy Raphael did smile, “Why is that? The casualties? The far-reaching implications of such a device?”

“Nope,” said Mister Lucky, “If it wasn’t for that, I think that stupid Charlie Charleston would never have shown up.”

“Ah, yes. Charlie. During the second Great War, we all joked that he was the true force behind Adolf Hitler,” said Shoshy Raphael, “Could you imagine it? A legion of Nazis dancing the Charleston across the battlefield? A race of Aryan Supermen who were exceptional at dancing that infernal dance.”

“I shudder to think,” said Mister Lucky, “Just because I’m all chummy with you right now doesn’t mean I like you. I still think you’re one of the worst eggs I’ve ever come across.”

“Of course. My hatred for you is matched only by my hatred for Edwin Cloudstar,” said Shoshy.

“Who? Never mind, let’s check the other rooms. See if our compatriots are in them,” said Mister Lucky.

A quick check of the rooms revealed the Amazing Rando tied to a chair with Vinny Fitzpatrick, Guerdon Trueblood shackled together with the Impossible Mister Frink, Guy Magistro chained to a wall with Jojo Jenkins by his side, and Simon McCockindale in a room with Dick Douglas. All had been visited by Unimportant.

“I can’t wait for the surprise,” said Vinny Fitzpatrick, “D’ya think it’s a party?”

“Nazi jewel thieves,” said Dick Douglas, “I’d bet your hat on it.”

Guy Magistro flicked his wrist and summoned his basket of magic eggs, “Don’t be daft. We’ve done nothing worth celebrating. More likely that fool means to kill us.”

As if on cue, a large television screen flipped down from the ceiling and the silhouetted Unimportant appeared on its screen. The collective members of the Basset Hound Brigade and Nantucket Dragon Group looked up and waited.

“By my estimates, you should all have escaped by now. Don’t bother looking for me, as I’ve been gone for several minutes, and I took measures to keep you from following me. Now, if you’ll look down, you’ll see two loading bay doors. If my instructions are followed, then they should be opening now,” said Unimportant. The doors did, in fact, open and ten men walked out of the trailers. The Bassets and Nantucket Dragon Group looked down upon them warily. Unimportant continued, “I scoured the Earth to find beings who were your polar opposites. Anti-Bassets and Anti-Dragons, if you wish. It’s my hope that you all kill each other, though I admit my hopes aren’t very high. Have at it, gentlemen.”

The screen ascended and the ten men stared up at the Basset Hound Brigade and Nantucket Dragon Group.

“It’s impossible for us to survive,” gasped Mister Frink.

“Anything’s possible,” said a hippie, among the men on the ground, “I can do what you do, Mister Frink. You can call me the possible Mister Harold.”

“I never liked hippies,” said Mister Frink, under his breath.

“There’s no chance you can beat us,” said Mister Lucky, “I mean, look at you? Are you supposed to be my guy?”

A hulking brute of a man dressed like Mister Lucky just stared, “I’m Mister Unlucky. We’re gonna kill you dead.”

“I like him,” said Shoshy Raphael with a grin, “Right to the point. Nantucket Dragon Group, it would appear that they’re one short, and I’m sure we’re all terribly busy, so why don’t we end this quickly?”

“It’s been years since we done that,” said Simon McCockindale, “You think he’s still around?”

“Of course,” said Guy Magistro, “He’s a demon.”

“True,” said Simon McCockindale.

“Fire,” said Shoshy Raphael, thrusting out his fist.

“Earth,” said Guy Magistro, doing the same.

“Air,” said Guerdon Trueblood.

“Water,” said the Amazing Rando.

“Energy,” said Simon McCockindale.

The five dragon rings each emitted a beam of energy, meeting in the center of the room and drilling into the ground. Moments later, in a flash of brimstone and fire, the demonic hobo Baggy Satan emerged.

“What’s all this, then?” he said, honestly confused. He looked around and realized what was happening, “You lot! Just the other day I was having a chat with me mate about you! How long’s it been?”

“Decades,” said Shoshy Raphael, “If you would, destroy all those men on the ground.”

Baggy Satan’s eyes glowed with happiness, “Truly? No pullin’ levers or makin’ bears out of pizza? Just straight up hellfire an’ brimstone?”

“Yes!” said Shoshy Raphael.

The men on the ground began to converse nervously, and then they all stepped back. The possible Mister Harold waved to the Basset Hound Brigade and Nantucket Dragon Group, “Sorry, fellas, but we quit. Come on, Mister Unlucky.”

The veins on Mister Unlucky’s neck throbbed, his eyes bulged, and his suit tore. He turned to the possible Mister Harold and growled at him, “No!” He ran at Baggy Satan and punched him into a wall, leaving an imprint. There was a collective gasp, “I don’t run!”

“We do,” said Mister Harold, “Good luck taking on ten men and a demon.”

With that, the Anti-Bassets and Anti-Dragons disbanded, leaving only Mister Unlucky to oppose the Nantucket Dragon Group and Basset Hound Brigade.

“I don’t run, neither,” said Baggy Satan, standing up and wiping the blood from the corner of his mouth, “Let’s see you do that again!”

Mister Unlucky cracked his knuckles and lumbered towards Baggy Satan, who lashed out with a flaming uppercut that threw Mister Unlucky into the air. He landed with a sickening crack, but immediately stood back up, tearing out a piece of the floor and hurling it at Baggy Satan. The demon countered it with a stream of hellfire, and then turned the fire on Mister Unlucky. He shielded his face from the fire and strode through it as if it were water, back-handing Baggy Satan once he reached him.

“Should we help?” said Vinny Fitzpatrick.

“Already on it,” said Mister Lucky, who took out a notebook, wrote something down, and slid the notebook into his pocket. Scant seconds later, a hundred Mister Luckys appeared in the warehouse and all of them swarmed Mister Unlucky. The brute easily threw them off and used several of them as weapons against Baggy Satan.

“He’s impossible to defeat,” said Mister Frink, whose words caused the large television to fall from the ceiling and crash upon Mister Unlucky, knocking him to the ground. Baggy Satan spat on him and vanished back into Hell and all the Mister Luckys dissolved into goo. The one true Mister Lucky made his way down and walked over to the fallen brute.

He checked for a pulse, “Oh my god. He’s still alive.”

“Quite a feat,” said Shoshy Raphael, “Now then, are we going to continue this little team-up or can we all go our separate ways?”

“We’re done here,” said Mister Lucky, nudging Mister Unlucky with his foot, “Be on the look-out, though. I don’t think we’ve seen the last of this Unimportant. Or Mister Unlucky.”

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Article of Evidence

Posted by meekrat on September 22, 2010

At the Fox’s Den, headquarters of the world famous Basset Hound Brigade, the team was enjoying a rare night in when suddenly trouble stuck! In the form of a man knocking on the door! The first on the scene was Jojo Jenkins, gardener.

“Hello?” Jojo answered, but as he opened the door he was met with a flash of blinding light.

“Gee whiz, what a story!” said the light, though as it dimmed it revealed a short stocky man in a pork-pie hat with a “PRESS” ticket sticking out of its brim, “The Basset Hound Brigade keep a slave!”

Jojo stepped back nervously, raising his hands defensively, “Why you taking my picture? I never did no crime!”

Jojo’s cries did not go unheard, and the Impossible Mister Frink joined him at the doorway, “What’s going on here, Mister Jenkins?”

Jojo pointed to the reporter outside, “That man just took my picture!”

“A slave and one of our British oppressors? The Basset Hound Brigade is a regular house of sin,” exclaimed the reporter, snapping more pictures, “This is the story that’ll take me right to the top!”

“Oh dear,” sighed Mister Frink as he rolled up his sleeves and approached the newspaperman, “You must be a newspaperman. I believe our official policy is to turn you out upon your arse and wish you the best.”

“I’ve no doubt about that,” said the reporter, escaping Mister Frink’s grasp with the ease of one who had done so many times before, “What else do you have in there? Vampires? Automatons?”

The Little Spick, commander of the Orphan Freelance and member of the Basset Hound Brigade, chose that inopportune moment to join his compatriots at the doorway, “What’s goin’ on here?”

The reporter snapped more pictures, deftly moving so that he could see past Jojo and Mister Frink, “Why, hello there, son! I’m Arlo Flannery, newspaperman! What do you know about this Basset Hound Brigade?”

The Little Spick grinned and jammed his thumb into his chest proudly, “Why, I’m a bona-fide member!”

Arlo nodded, “What do your parents have to say about that?”

“Nothing, on account of me not havin’ any!” said the Little Spick, still grinning.

Arlo shot more pictures, “Child labor! Not only that, but minority child labor! I know we don’t have any laws against that sort of thing, this being the nineteen-twenties, but it’s still sensational! Off I go to make a name for myself by dragging yours through the mud! Farewell, gentlemen!” With that, Arlo Flannery tipped his hat and ran off.

Jojo turned to Mister Frink, “We’re in trouble, ain’t we?”

“Indubitably,” said Mister Frink solemnly, “We must alert the rest of the Bassets!”

***

In no time flat, the team was assembled in the study. Mister Lucky paced back and forth in front of a statue of the team’s founder, Horatio Chan, who was otherwise indisposed. Mister Frink stood against the wall, arms crossed, while the rest of the team lounged on various couches and chairs.

“I thought we had an agreement with the newspaper,” ranted Mister Lucky, waving his arms, “We keep providing the derring-do and they don’t try to pull stunts like this!”

“Faith and begorrah,” said Vinny Fitzpatrick, the team’s pilot, tears welling in his eyes, “What are we going to do?”

Mister Lucky slammed his fist on a nearby desk, “For one thing, it’s pretty clear to me that anyone with a skeleton in their closet is going to cause this guy to jump to some crazy conclusion. Which means that, god help us, Dick Douglas is our only hope.”

Vinny Fitzpatrick looked up in shock, “But Mister Lucky, what did you ever do that was wrong? You don’t got anything to worry about.”

Mister Lucky stared at Vinny and loosened his bow-tie, “Why, I was one of the founding members of the Orphan Freelance. That’s it. No other skeletons in my closet. Heh.”

“Sorry for bringing it up,” said Vinny, who remembered he was distraught and began almost crying once again.

“It’s all right, you didn’t know. No one did,” said Mister Lucky, tightening his bow-tie again, “Anyway, that’s why Dick’s our only hope. As far as I know, he’s the only one of us without any blemishes on his record. Well, not his personal record, anyway.”

“So I’m the only hope, huh?” said Dick Douglas, who had been reclining on a couch and forcing Jojo to stand, “Well then, I guess that I’m on the case! Uh, what am I doing again?”

“You have to track down this Arlo Flannery person and convince him not to do whatever he’s planning,” said Mister Lucky.

Dick stood up and walked to the door with a swagger, “Heh. Yeah, that’s right. This is a job only Dick Douglas can do, and the rest of your jokers better not forget it.”

After he left, Mister Lucky turned to the rest of the team, “While he’s keeping Arlo busy, let’s find a new headquarters and think up a new name for ourselves. In fact, we might as well try to think up pseudonyms, too.”

***

Dick Douglas wandered the streets, searching high and low for his quarry but also trying to find his office and remember exactly what he was supposed to be doing. After wandering around the city for half an hour, he finally found his office and sat down in his chair and leaned back, putting his feet on the desk.

“I remember when this office was haunted,” said Dick, reminiscing about the founding of the Basset Hound Brigade, “That was a mystery and a half, but I solved it, I did, and took down those Nazi jewel thieves! And I can solve this case! Whatever it is, no matter how many Nazis I have to take down. Huh. Maybe I should have written down what my case is…”

There was a knock at the door and Dick sat up, “Come in?”

The door creaked open, revealing Arlo Flannery, “I’m looking for a private eye to help me dig up some dirt on the Basset Hound Brigade.”

“So you came to the best,” said Dick, grinning like the Cheshire cat.

Arlo sat down in the chair opposite Dick’s desk and shook his head, “No, I came to the cheapest.”

Dick didn’t miss a beat, “That’s because I don’t want to deny anyone my keen detection skills. Who did you say you were?”

“The name is Flannery. Arlo Flannery,” the reporter held out his hand, “I’m a newspaperman and this story I’m working on is going to be my big break!”

Dick completely ignored Arlo’s hand, “What story is this?”

Arlo, nevertheless, kept it raised, “The one about the Basset Hound Brigade. You know, maybe I can find someone else.”

Dick continued ignoring Arlo’s hand, but went on the offensive, “Ah, no. I’m just being thorough. I need the money up front.”

Arlo’s hand finally went down, reaching into his pocket to get his money clip. He paged through the paltry amount of bills it contained, “I only have fifteen bucks. You see, this story is going to be — ”

Dick Douglas grabbed the money and shoved it into his own pocket, “Yes, yes. The thing about the Basset Hound Brigade. Fifteen bucks will do.”

“It’s all I have,” said Arlo, “That and this camera.”

“Huh. That’s a nice camera,” said Dick, reaching over and grabbing the camera. Since it was latched to Arlo’s neck, it wasn’t going without a fight, “I’ll take that, too.”

“I can’t give you my camera,” said Arlo, struggling against Dick, “I have pictures on it that I need for my story.”

Dick continued to pull, trying to free the camera from Arlo’s grasp, “Uh, I’ll give you the pictures. Just give me the camera and I’ll help you with your story.”

Arlo sighed and unlatched the camera, “All right. Fine. Here’s the camera. When will you give me the pictures?”

Dick began fiddling with any button or latch he could find on his new device, “Right now. How do I open it?”

“No! You’ll ruin my pictures! You’ll ruin — ” shouted Arlo, nearly leaping over the desk to save his photographs. He was too late, however, as Dick pushed a button and the back of the camera opened up, spilling out film, “– my pictures. You just ruined my pictures.”

“Did I? I never used a camera before,” Dick looked at the camera and tossed it on the ground, shattering its lens, “Oh well. It just so happens that I know where these Fox Hound Coalition fellows are holed up, and pardon my French, but they’re a pain in my rear. It’ll be a pleasure to help you take them down. I’ll even do it free of charge.”

Arlo stared at him, his face pale, “You just took my camera and all the money I have.”

“I mean from this point forward it’ll be free of charge,” said Dick, “Plus expenses, of course. Now let’s go, if we hurry we’ll be able to catch all of them. Including their ring-leader!”

The color returned to Arlo’s face and his eyes glistened, “You mean Mister Lucky? Golly, if I could just get an ounce of dirt on him, it’ll undo all the damage you’ve already done to my blossoming career! It’s a deal!”

Dick Douglas stood up and strode to the door, “Let’s go take down some Fox Hounds!”

Arlo stood up and followed him, “You mean Bassets?”

Dick opened the door and the pair walked out, “Whatever!”

***

Dick Douglas and Arlo Flannery stood in front of the Fox’s Den after wandering around the city for an hour and a half, consisting of Dick trying to remember where he was going and, once he remembered, where the place he was going was.

Arlo turned to Dick, “I was just here an hour ago.”

“Yeah?” said Dick, “Well, now we’re back here again, and this time we’ll bring down Mister Lucky. Hey, do you have a notebook I can borrow?”

Arlo stared at the detective, clutching his jacket close to his body, “I need my notebook. It has all the information I have on the Bassets so far, and I won’t be able to write down anything about Mister Lucky if I don’t have it. So I’d really rather not give you my notebook.”

Dick glared at him, “Listen, do you want me to solve this case?”

“Well, yes, but — ” stammered Arlo.

“Then give me the notebook!”

“Fine,” Arlo relented, pulling his notebook from his jacket and handing it over. He pulled out a pen, “Do you need this too?”

Dick grabbed the notebook and the pen, “I thought that went without saying.”

“Oh well,” said Arlo, rubbing his hands together with malevolent glee, “When I bring down Mister Lucky, it’ll more than make up for it!”

“All right. Knock on the door,” said Dick.

Arlo looked at Dick as if the detective had just told him to shoot the president, “Why?”

Dick smiled in what he hoped was a cunning way, “How else do you expect to get in?”

“I thought you had a way in!” said Arlo.

“Yes, knocking on the front door,” Dick pointed to the door, “It’s the perfect plan. They’ll never expect it.”

“If you say so,” said Arlo, who walked up the steps and knocked on the door.

It opened to reveal Jojo Jenkins, whose eyes bulged in surprise, “Hello? What you doing back here, Mister Douglas? Why’d you bring the newspaper man with you?”

Suspicions began to rise in Arlo’s mind, “What is he talking about?”

“Never you mind,” said Dick, pushing Arlo out of the way, “Let me in, Jojo. My client and I have business to attend to.”

“I don’t think that’s such a good idea, Mister Douglas,” said Jojo, standing his ground.

“As your employer, I demand you let me in or I’ll not feed you for a week!” said Dick.

Jojo thought about bringing up the fact that Dick rarely remembered to buy any groceries and so he and Jojo had to dine nearly exclusively at the Fox’s Den, but thought better of it, “If you say so, Mister Douglas.”

“Thanks, Jojo,” said Dick, entering the Fox’s Den. He turned to Arlo, “Follow me.”

The suspicions that had begun to rise had finished their ascent and were at the forefront of Arlo’s mind, “Wait, you’re that Dick Douglas?”

Dick stopped as if he had been stricken through the heart, “There’s more than one?” He regained his composure and continued walking, “They’re right through here.”

“So you’ve just been trying to trick me?” said Arlo, his face once again pale, his eyes sunken, looking for all the world as if someone had just shot his dog.

“No,” said Dick, “As I said, these Bassets are a pain in my rear. And they’re right through here!”
Dick swung a door open, revealing the Basset Hound Brigade, all of whom had changed their clothes. A set of fake IDs was sitting on the desk and someone had brought in a chalkboard and written down a list of locations with the heading “New Headquarters?”

Mister Lucky turned to the newcomers, dressed in a mortarboard and gown, “Dick? What the hell are you doing here?”

“I’m helping to bring you and this crooked organization down,” said Dick smugly, “Why are you all dressed like that?”

“We knew you’d screw up, but we never thought you’d outright betray us,” said Mister Lucky, trying to keep from panicking.

“Well, he decided to do what’s right, not what you say,” said Arlo, who actually had no idea what was going on but was going to make the most of it, “As well he should, since I gave him all my money, my camera, and my notebook! I have virtually no proof of your wrongdoing other than my word!”

Mister Lucky stared at Arlo, then at Dick, “Is this true? You took all his stuff?”

“I sure did,” said Dick, in the middle of tossing the notebook and pen into a fireplace.

“Did you mean to?” said Mister Lucky, “I mean, did you plan to take all of his stuff?”

“I certainly did,” said Dick.

“So, wait,” said Mister Lucky, taking off his mortarboard and scratching his head, “You took all the proof he had. And all his money.”

“That’s what I did,” said Dick.

“So you actually,” started Mister Lucky, trying to force the rest of the words through his mind and out his mouth, “Saved the Basset Hound Brigade?”

“Yeah, I guess I did,” said Dick, shoving the Little Spick off a couch and reclining upon it, “Maybe I planned it all along.”

“So you… you… what?” Mister Lucky sat down, “You actually did it? You saved the day?”

Arlo Flannery stood in front of Dick and removed his hat, “Dick Douglas, you’re the most cunning and devious man I’ve ever met. I take off my hat to you, and it’s clear that in any battle of wits, I’ll quickly lose to you. Any organization with you as a member must be top-notch do-gooders.”

“Yeah, that’s right, spread the word,” said Dick. Arlo nodded, put on his hat, and hurried out the door.

Mister Lucky turned to Mister Frink, “Did you have anything to do with this, Frinky?”

“No,” replied Mister Frink.

“I need to go lie down. This is just too much,” said Mister Lucky as he removed his gown and exited the room, “Good job, Dick. Good job saving the day.”

“Yep, I’m great,” said Dick Douglas.

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The Cracking of ASS: Epilogue

Posted by meekrat on September 19, 2010

The giant space minotaur Kumbiya waded through the city, smashing down buildings as if they were made of paper. Occasionally, he would laugh heartily, causing the buildings around him to shake and the windows to shatter. People fled under its giant hooves, some failing to escape and perishing under the monster’s feet and falling debris. The Astounding Superhero Syndicate watched the beast.

“Shouldn’t we be doing something?” said Land Captain.

“I don’t see you doing anything, jerk-ass,” broadcast Clyde.

“I’m reasonably certain Go-To Guy could punch him out,” said Mark King.

Go-To Guy folded his arms and shook his head, “No. You know I’m against violence.”

“Couldn’t you just throw him somewhere? Like the sun?” said the Can, who was now dressed in a simple body-suit.

“I swore upon receiving my powers to never harm another living being, no matter the cost,” said Go-To Guy.

“No wonder you’re with this lot,” said Englishman, scornfully, “When do we get to leave this forsaken place?”

“Once we deal with that monster,” said Mark King, “I doubt there’s any air traffic in or out of the city, all things considered.”

“Typical,” scoffed Englishman, “Nothing in this backwards place works.”

“Perhaps we should call in the reserve members,” said Mark King.

“We only have two reserve members,” broadcast Clyde, “Captain Depresso and… you know. Player One.”

Mark King turned upon Clyde, “Player One isn’t a member of the Astounding Superhero Syndicate! We just told him he was to keep him from hanging around here anymore.”

“Why didn’t you just arrest him,” asked the Can.

Mark King sighed, and with the air of one who had rehearsed this line many times, said, “As part of the Agreement, superheroes are honor-bound to accept the word of a Paci Custodis when they claim that they have attacked a supernatural entity. Player One claims that his victim was a zombie, and as such, we have to grant him leniency.”

“Oh,” said the Can, “I guess that makes sense. Hey, Captain Depresso knows all about superheroes and super-villains, right? Why not just ask him how they defeated Kumbiya in the past?”

“That’s actually a sound plan,” said Mark King, “Clyde?”

“On it, boss,” broadcast Clyde. A few moments later, “Okay. Turns out this one kid named Green Dove would usually do the job. You have to get the ring out of Kumbiya’s nose. I guess Novacaine nicked it after Black Raven killed Green Dove. Hold on, we didn’t get those two, did we?”

“No, we didn’t,” said Go-To Guy, who had personally escorted all the villains captured so far to jail.

“Look! Up there!” shouted Photogra-She, snapping pictures, “It’s the Amazing Serial Hang-Man!”

Amazing Serial Hang-Man had hung himself on Kumbiya’s nose ring and was swinging himself back and forth. The beast swatted at his face. With a mighty cheer, the Serial Hang-Man grabbed onto Kumbiya’s hand mid-swat and the nose-ring was torn from the beast’s nose. Go-To Guy caught Serial Hang-Man in mid-air, and the pair landed in front of the other heroes. Serial Hang-Man dropped the giant ring in front of Mark King.

“I saved the day!” said Serial Hang-Man with a swarthy smile.

“You certainly did,” said Mark King, incredulously, “You certainly did.”

Mark King would have said he would be Mark King this down in his report were he less surprised at the turn of events.

***

Novacaine sat at the bar, enjoying the silence and nursing a White Russian. Black Raven walked through the door and sat next to him.

“They’ve beaten us,” said Black Raven, “We planned and planned and made sure that we went after the weakest superheroes we could find. Yet they beat us.”

“Perhaps they beat us because we underestimated them so severely,” said Novacaine, “I was sure Kumbiya would have given them a lot more trouble, however. We can always use this as a learning experience.”

“I guess. It’s just so frustrating. What are we going to do now?” said Black Raven, miserably.

“You’ll get the boot, you will!” said a voice from above them.

Bootman dropped to the floor and lashed out, punching at Novacaine and kicking the stool out from under Black Raven. Once they were both on the ground, he trod heavily upon them. Once they were both beaten enough for his tastes, Bootman hopped back, allowing the Wiper to enter from the backroom.

“One thing you two’ll learn is that you don’t mess with the Wiper,” said the Wiper, “Now then, you two? If you ever do anything I don’t like in this town again, I’ll break my rule of no mind-wiping without payment and make damn sure you don’t remember anything. Got it?”

Gurgles were the only response Black Raven and Novacaine were capable of, but they weren’t enough to appease the Wiper.

“Bootman?” said the Wiper, “Take out this trash.”

***

A week passed, and Mark King sat in his office with his feet on his desk, looking through a copy of a decades old TV Guide. As he paged through it, Perry Zalia sat in one of the office chairs holding a clipboard. Mark King knew this, and had actually picked up the magazine and started reading it after Zalia sat down, but Zalia couldn’t tell if he was doing it out of spite or just because he was Mark King. Occasionally, Mark King would find something he felt worth sharing, and would show it to Zalia.

“All the loose ends tied up?” asked Mark King, tossing the magazine into the air and zapping it with a bolt of energy from his index finger, his sole superpower.

“If anymore ends are loose, then I’m sure we’ll become well aware of it quite soon,” said Perry Zalia, preparing his clipboard, “Most of our villains have been incarcerated in a prison funded by Samuel Hain, it would seem.”

Mark King nodded, “Part of his platform was anti-super-crime, right? Good man, I guess. Where does that leave us?”

“We’re left with some much-needed down-time. El Scientist Magnifico is already working on a new project, something about fixing Land Captain’s car,” Zalia peered over his clipboard, “Most of the people in the city have gone back to regarding us as minor nuisances, you know.”

“We’re not in this for the glory or the money, Zalia. You know that. We’re in this because it’s the right thing to do,” Mark King smiled and pulled out a notebook, “And you can bet I’ll be Mark King that down in my report. I’ll see you in PE.”

Zalia nodded and left the office.

***

Across town, a chapter of the Neighborhood Watch met. Mabel Sturmond brought out a tray of cookies and placed it on a coffee table, which a little girl wearing dish-washing gloves and a pot on her head greedily ate up. The other members, including a heavily-armed supposed Viet Nam veteran and young man dressed in a practice gi, politely took just one.

The Viet Nam vet finished his cookie and coughed heavily for several minutes, eventually hitting himself in the chest and dislodging a piece of cookie. It flew across the room and landed in a plant. “So, does anyone have anything to report?”

The door opened and the Can, wearing a new and slightly improved version of his armor, walked in. He looked around sheepishly and removed his lid, “Clarissa? I have a message from Night Rabbit.”

The little girl in the pot-helmet looked up from her cookie gorging expectantly, “Yef?”

The Can knelt down and placed his hand on the girl’s shoulder, “He says he’s sorry.”

Clarissa thought about this for a moment, chewing on a cookie as she did so, and smiled, “Okay.”

The Can had absolutely no idea how to proceed, “That’s it?”

Mabel proffered the tray of cookies, “We all heard the news about his passing. Would you like to stay, Mister Can?”

The Can looked around at the group of people who had been the friends of his friend, and decided that he could be part of two teams.

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The Rise of Justice-Bot

Posted by meekrat on August 20, 2010

El Scientist Magnifico, Clyde the Embryonic Man, the Can, and a janitor in a cape named Jose sat in El Scientist Magnifico’s lab for their weekly game of poker. For El Scientist Magnifico and Clyde it was weekly, at least. The Can was conned into attending the week before, when he came to upgrade the garbage can he wore as armor and get a non-lethal weapon. Jose just showed up wearing a cape and sat down, and no one bothered to tell him to leave. Clyde and Jose smoked cigars, which was a feat for Clyde due to the fact that he was a giant floating embryo, and all but El Scientist Magnifico had opened cans of beer in front of them. As it usually did, talk turned to the superhero community of other cities.

“So did you guys hear what happened in Cleveland?” asked Clyde, using his telepathy to gently probe his opponent’s minds in order to see their hands.

El Scientist Magnifico shook his head, the Can was lost in thought, trying to figure out his hand, and Jose said, “No.”

While many major cities in the United States had satellite offices for the Astounding Superhero Syndicate, some did not, and one which did not was Cleveland, OH.

“You know they had a bunch of superheroes, a bunch of super-villains, right? Well, I guess last month a bunch of those bastards figured they had enough and they just went off and killed all the superheroes!”

Jose looked at Clyde, shocked, “That is terrible. I have full house.”

El Scientist Magnifico put down his cards, “Four of a kind.”

Clyde put down his cards, “I only got three of a kind.”

The Can put down his cards, which revealed that he had a royal flush. He looked around at his fellow players, worriedly, “I don’t know what I have.”

El Scientist Magnifico was about to speak when Clyde telepathically prodded him not to. Clyde replied to the Can, “You got nothing. Anyway, the kicker is that all those superheroes turned out to be a bunch of kids! Not one of ’em was older than me. Not one! So, I heard from my sources in the supernatural community that those damn fangies didn’t take too kindly to them killing all those kids and ran the villains straight out of town. They’re probably comin’ this way, so we should be ready for ’em. I got two pair.”

Jose put down his cards, “Full house again. Good thing we hire new heroes, yes?”

El Scientist Magnifico put down his cards, “Si. Straight flush.”

The Can put down his cards again, with another royal flush. El Scientist Magnifico wanted to tell him, but Clyde once again prodded him against it. “I don’t think I have anything again. Wouldn’t it be great if we had crime-fighting robots? I know they usually turn things into a totalitarian thing, but they’re still pretty cool for a little while, right?”

For the rest of the game, El Scientist Magnifico thought of robots, his mind so lost that Clyde never had to prod him again.

***

Two weeks later, El Scientist Magnifico turned the final screw and gently placed his screwdriver on the table. With that final turn, he completed what was perhaps the most important and advanced work of his life. He placed his finger on his temple and thought, “Clyde, please alert Senor King that there is something in my lab that I wish for him to see. Gracias.”

El Scientist Magnifico stood, beaming about his new project, but the minutes passed slowly, and soon the minutes turned into hours. He sat down and began tinkering with a new project, but eventually put it down and began to impatiently pace around his lab. Eventually, Mark King teleported in and stretched.

“Hey,” said Mark King, rubbing the sleep from his eyes, “Clyde said you wanted me to see something, but I was about to settle in for a nap. You can’t fight the nap, you know.”

“Si. The nap, she is powerful. So is this!” El Scientist Magnifico gestured to his new creation with a flourish.

Mark King stared for a minute, squinted, and craned his neck, “Is it behind the robot?”

“No, it IS the robot!”

Mark King narrowed his eyes at the robot and kept trying to look behind it, murmuring to himself, and pointing at it. Occasionally he’d make a gesture, and after several minutes, he said, “Didn’t you already have this robot? I swear I’ve seen it in here before. Then again, I haven’t seen half these things before, but it’s a robot. I think I would have seen it.”

“I have only just completed it.”

“What about the garbage can guy? Isn’t he a robot? Or a cyborg, or something?”

“No. He is a man in a garbage can.”

“Oh, that’s right! I can’t wait until he fights something. It’ll be hilarious. You wait and see. Anyway, what does it do?”

“Very glad you asked! This is Justice-Bot, who stands for truth and justice and freedom! He is programmed to fight injustice at every turn!”

Mark King nodded and took out a notepad, “I’ll have to be Mark King that down in my report!”

“I was hoping we could send it out with someone to test it. I am sure it will do very good job.”

“I suppose we could do that. Let’s send it out with Photogra-She. She can take pictures of it.”

***

The pictures Photogra-She took found their way to the desk of Mark King, who was equally terrified and disgusted. He used his sole power of super-speed to reach El Scientist Magnifico’s lab in mere seconds, and slammed them onto El Scientist Magnifico’s desk after knocking several beakers and test tubes onto the floor which hadn’t been in the way.

“Where is this monster?!” screamed Mark King.

“What monster do you speak of?” said El Scientist Magnifico, picking up the photographs, “I see only Justice-Bot. He appears to be doing a fine job.”

“That murder-bot you finished yesterday! Where is he?”

“I sent him out to fight crime.”

Mark King grabbed a random picture and shoved in front of El Scientist Magnifico’s face, “Oh? What do you call this?”

The photograph, which showed Justice-Bot holding out his gloved hand to keep a truck from running over some ducklings.

“He appears to be letting those ducklings cross the street unmolested.”

“And this?”

This one was him punching out a bank-robber while kicking another one in the face. He had also obtained a shield, somehow, and was using it to defend a bank teller.

“He is stopping a robbery.”

“And this? I have to warn you, it’s the worst of the lot!”

It was a picture of him standing with a police officer, both of them smiling for the camera.

“He is just standing with a police officer. Nothing appears to be wrong. Perhaps these are the wrong photographs?”

“You’ve created a monster and you’re just content to let him run rampant through the city? I know how this sort of thing works. A scientist builds a robot for the purpose of doing some good, but the robot gets it in his mind that humans themselves are fundamentally evil and starts waging a war against them. How long will it be until he builds another in his own image? When will I not be able to make toast because the toaster refuses to serve a human like me? When will the death camps start, Magnifico? WHEN WILL THE DEATH CAMPS START?”

Mark King ran out of the room, leaving El Scientist Magnifico in a state of bewilderment. An hour later, Clyde floated into the room and hovered above the table.

“What’s up, Pop?” said Clyde, who had been raised from an even smaller embryo by El Scientist Magnifico.

“Senor King seems to have gone mad. He thinks Justice-Bot is some sort of evil robot bent on the destruction and enslavement of humanity.”

Clyde was silent for a moment, “Oh man. I think I know why.”

“Why?” said El Scientist Magnifico said, “Why does he think your brother is evil?”

“Hold up, what’s this about a brother?”

“I nursed you to your current state, and created Justice-Bot. That makes you brothers, of a sort.”

“Not sure I like that, Pop.”

“He is made for the greater good! Whether you like him or not, he is a good being!”

The debate raged on, far into the night.

***

The Astounding Superhero Syndicate Headquarters used to be a college satellite until Mark King bought it out and turned it into one of the foremost superhero groups in the country. As such, several of its rooms consisted of desks on tiers, and it was in one of these rooms that the Syndicate currently met.
“I know you’re all wondering why you’ve been summoned,” said Mark King, “We have a level eight-four situation. El Scientist Magnifico has created a being which is so evil, so rigidly moral that he poses a threat not just to us, not just to the city, but to the entire world. Dim the lights! I’ve got a PowerPoint!”

The first slide was comic sans on a white background, reading “The Here Evil”. The next showed the first photo taken of Justice-Bot, which caused Sitting Tricky Pillow Man to scream in terror. The pictures were shown one-by-one, and as the last photograph swirled off the screen and the lights turned back on, every hero in the room was silent. Then, suddenly, a voice rang out:

“That mechanical monstrosity has to be stopped!”

Mark King nodded, “Right you are, the Can. Unfortunately, Go-To Guy and the Forgiver are in Australia right now dealing with something about kangaroos or some-such nonsense. Probably bushwhackers. Which means that our main powerhouses are unavailable, but this has to be stopped now! Clyde has agreed to stay behind and keep El Scientist Magnifico from stopping you from your task. And — yes, Captain Zimball?”

“Does this have anything to do wit’ zombies or the ocean? If it don’t, then it got nothin’ to do wit’ me.”

“I suppose you’re right, but we may need you to needlessly sacrifice yourself to stop Justice-Bot, or as I call him, Injusti-tron.”

“I ain’t doing that. You best be finding yourself someone else to off themselves. I got some zombie pirate criminals to kill.”

With that, Captain Zimball left.

“Well, are the rest of you with us? Where’s our European branch?”

“They’re on a coach flight. They’ll be here tomorrow.”

“I see. Well, we’ll have to do with who we have. Role call, then?”

“Dismembero, the Dismembered Man!”

“Sitting Tricky Pillow Man!”

“Two-Places-at-Once Man!”

“Amazing Serial Hang-Man!”

“Photogra-She!”

“The Can!”

“Land Captain!”

“Night Rabbit!”

“Scottish Boxman!”

Mark King looked at the Scottish Boxman, slightly puzzled, “I thought you were on our European team?”

“I’m where I’m needing to be, lad!”

“All right, then. Let’s head out!”

***

Justice-Bot stood on a rooftop, holding his shield. He wore a red motorcyclist’s helmet with matching boots and gloves, a white jumpsuit, and a yellow scarf. The wind caused the scarf to flutter gently in the breeze. He looked down at the streets below, and passing police officers looked up to him, smiled, and waved. Justice-Bot replied with a simple salute. He smiled happily, and felt almost as human as he looked. Then, suddenly, he felt something hit him in the back. He turned to see a head on the ground.

“You’ll not escape justice this day!” said Dismembero, trying to roll, his head the only body part present.

Justice-Bot picked him up and placed him on top of a crate, and asked, “Aren’t you part of the Astounding Superhero Syndicate? Why are you attacking me?”

Dismembero closed his mouth and started to hum. Justice-Bot turned and a figure stepped from the shadows.

“Stand down, vile automaton of injustice! You now face Night Rabbit, and you’ll not escape the reach of justice this day, this night, this night of goodness, this night of anti-bad! By the time the sun has risen — ”

Justice-Bot stared at Night Rabbit for a few minutes, listening to him ramble, and then leapt off the side of the building, sliding down it on his shield. Night Rabbit sighed and ran to the side of the building.

“You didn’t let me finish!”

Justice-Bot slid past the Amazing Serial Hang-Man, who just gave him a thumbs-up, and right into a pile of pillows. At first, he thought this was merely strange, but then the pillows started sticking to him and seeping over him, threatening to cover him. He looked and saw a man in a long gray coat and a big fur hat with a thick black beard standing across the street from him. Justice-Bot raised a hand to him, but Sitting Tricky Pillow Man screamed and ran. As he ran, the pillows lost their stickiness, and Justice-Bot easily escaped to face Photogra-She, who snapped a picture.

“What’s going on?” said Justice-Bot, “This afternoon, you seemed to not hate me!”

Photogra-She shrugged, “I don’t hate you. Mark King just told us to do this. He seems really freaked out by you.”

“Why?”

Photogra-She shrugged again, and took another picture, “I dunno.”

Justice-Bot gaped, then turned to walk away, but was stopped by a middle-aged man in tan coveralls.

“You won’t go any further! Or will you, because no man can be in two places at once!” said the man.

Justice-Bot stared at him, trying to figure out what was going on, and turned around, only to face the same man in tan coveralls.

“No man save Two-Places-at-Once Man!”

Justice-Bot sighed and closed his eyes, “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

He side-stepped Two-Places-at-Once Man, who checked his watch, “Shoot! I have to pick Kimberly up from ballet!”

The other Two-Places-at-Once Man nodded, “See you later, then.”

Justice-Bot, meanwhile, was running down the street, trying to escape the craziness. Every so often, the street would light up with a camera flash. During one of these flashes, a freezer landed in front of him. He heard someone swearing in Scottish above him and looked up to see the Scottish Boxman, preparing to unload another box. He decided to get as far away from that rooftop as possible, and saw the Land Captain standing across the street in front of a car.

“What are you going to try to do?” called Justice-Bot, shield at the ready.

“Are you really some sort of evil robot?” said Land Captain.

“No!”

Land Captain nodded, “Didn’t think so.” He then got into the car and drove off, stopping only to pick up Photogra-She.

Justice-Bot continued running down the street, but was punched into a wall by Mark King, who was using his sole power of super-strength. Only Justice-Bot’s super-tuned servos allowed him to raise his shield in time to block the blow, which otherwise would have been fatal.

“Why are you doing this?” cried Justice-Bot, shield raised.

“I know what you are, and what you plan to do,” said Mark King, pointing angrily at the robot, “I’ll see you in PE, you murder-bot!”

Mark King ran at Jusice-Bot, fist ready to punch, but Justice-Bot leapt out of the way. Mark King ran into a brick wall. He emerged from the rubble, eyes burning with hate.

“I’m not a murder-bot. Even if I wasn’t programmed to respect all life, I would never kill anyone!”

“That’s not what the Can said!”

Justice-Bot cocked an eyebrow, “Who?”

The Can stepped out of a doorway sheepishly, “I’m the Can.”

“What did you tell these people to make them think I was a threat?”

“I was just talking about robots usually turn on their creators and humanity and all that, even if they seem really good and nice at first. Heck, the nicer and better they seem, the worse the fall.”

“According to what?”

“You know. Movies and stuff.”

Justice-Bot gaped at the Can, who shrugged and smiled. Mark King had been standing by, and his arms were now folded, his foot now tapping.

“So what you’re saying is that this entire attack is based upon your understanding of pop culture,” said Mark King.

“Pretty much,” said the Can.

Mark King narrowed his eyes at the Can, who looked down at the ground, ashamed. Justice-Bot stood, his shield lowered slightly. Then, Mark King began to laugh and walked over to the Can to ruffle his hair. Since the Can wore the top of a garbage can on his head, this did not have the desired effect.

“What a scamp,” said Mark King, “Sorry for the misunderstanding, Justice-Bot. Next time, I’ll be sure to make sure that the person we’re attacking is really a threat. You want to join the team?”

Justice-Bot’s head spun with the abrupt change in focus, “Er. Sure. I guess.”

“Okay! I think the Can should let you punch him or something, though. Just because.”

The Can looked down and mumbled something. Mark King elbowed him and he murmured, “Yes sir.”

Justice-Bot thought about declining this offer for a moment, but then stepped forward and flicked the Can, knocking him to the ground. He rolled around to get back to his feet, and Mark King laughed and laughed.

***

Later that night, Clyde and El Scientist Magnifico continued their debate.

“I don’t think he should be my brother because he’s probably dead by now,” said Clyde.

“What?” said El Scientist Magnifico, jumping to his feet, “How can this be?”

The door opened and Justice-Bot stepped in, no worse for wear, “I’m part of the team now, Dad.”

Clyde would have scowled if he had eyes yet, and instead simply loosed a wave of hate towards Justice-Bot, “Don’t call my Pop your dad.”

Justice-Bot shrugged and ignored Clyde, “Everything worked out for the best, I think.”

“Gracias a Dios!” said El Scientist Magnifico.

Justice-Bot smiled, “Yeah. I’m only going to fight the big crime, though. Super-villains and stuff. I’ll just help out in your lab when I’m not needed.”

“I hate you,” said Clyde, “I hate you so much.”

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MMM 2010: Epilog

Posted by meekrat on August 4, 2010

[In Detroit, Logan Keanu Solo and his group of Paci Custodis appear in their kitchen. Clarence Claybourne and Graves sit down and begin eating bowls of Frosted Flakes, while Shrugs takes his Mister Lucky scarecrow outside. Logan Keanu Solo stretches and goes to watch television, but Player One looks around for a few moments, and then runs up to his room. There is no one there, and he sits down on his bed, takes off his goggles, and begins to cry. Jimmy Swift comes to his door and knocks.]
Jimmy Swift: Hey. You all right?
Player One: Oh god. You’re hear to make fun of me or something, aren’t you?
[Jimmy Swift takes a chair, the only one not covered with video game paraphernalia, and sits on it.]
Jimmy Swift: Not this time. I mean, I spent a lot of time with Cowboy Santa and Elfie after my events were over, and then they just got ripped away from me. He was like a father to me in the short time I knew him. I’ll get over it, though. I have to. You, though, you lost your three closest friends, am I right?
Player One: Yeah. I didn’t even think to ask Player Three and Four where they are, and I know where Player Two is, but there’s no way I can get to Cleveland. I tried once, but I got as far as the bus depot before I had to turn back.
Jimmy Swift: The important thing is that you know they’re still there, and now all of you can look for each other together. Or something. You can find them, is what I’m saying.
Player One: You’re right. I’m going to actually make a plan and all that! Look out, world! Here I come!
Jimmy Swift: That’s the spirit! Now buck up and start planning!
Player One: Why don’t you always act like this?
Jimmy Swift: I don’t like it. And if you ever tell anyone about me doing this, I swear to God I’ll kill you myself.
Player One: Understood.

[In the seventies, the super-spy group known as CAST are having a mission briefing. Suddenly, Agent Man-In-Charge feels a cold shiver run down his spine.]
Agent Pheromone: What’s wrong, boss-man?
Agent Man-In-Charge: I feel as if someone just tore a version of me from the past, forced it to participate in inane competitions, and then finally used it to power a machine designed to channel the power from extra-dimensional entities into a fat little bear.
Agent Seven-In-One: Spooky. I just had the same feeling. What about you, Agent Villain?
[Agent Villain stands in the corner, cleaning his fingernails with his knife.]
Agent Villain: Hmm?
Agent Seven-In-One: Did you feel all those things?
[Agent Villain sheathes his knife and shrugs.]
Agent Villain: No. I didn’t feel a thing.

[Mike P, Owen Reilly, Ethan Crane, Pikapunk, Antwon, and Cinco de Mayo arrive on the god-head island. A dirty unshaven figure runs out of the woods, his clothes torn, carrying a sharpened stick.]
Mike P: JJ?
JJ: Oh thank god! Where have you guys been? There weren’t any heads, thank God, but still, you guys were gone for so long! Where were you?
Jerald: We’re not at liberty to discuss that with you. Who are you, anyway?
JJ: Who are you?
[Jerald and JJ scowl at each other. JJ stops as his eyes widen.]
JJ: Oh! Like an hour ago, a bunch of buildings just popped out of nowhere.
Mike P: That was supposed to happen, sort of.
JJ: Okay. So it’s not crazy island stuff?
Mike P: Not really. Are they nice?
JJ: I guess. Completely empty, but nice.
Ethan Crane: No televisions?
JJ: Not one. No furniture at all.
Mike P: Looks like we’ll be going shopping soon, then.
JJ: I’ll be footing the bill for that?
Mike P: You bet.

[Mister Lucky and the Archaic English Society arrive in front of the Spire.]
Mister Lucky: Good to be back home, I guess. What an adventure that was, wasn’t it?
Amorphous Blob: We died.
Mister Lucky: Sure did. Important thing is that we’re all back now. Me, you, Hamilton, Nick, Matt, and weird red creature.
Professor Nick: What was that last one?
Mister Lucky: Weird red creature.
Baco: Oh yes! I’ve finally found where I belong, among English majors! What a happy day indeed!
Mister Lucky: Were you… supposed to come back with us?
Baco: Oh, no. I think I was supposed to go with Mike P and his crew, but I hitched a ride with you lot instead.
Mister Lucky: You could do that?
Professor Nick: I wish I had known! I would have gone with that young lady with the napkins covering her naughty bits.
Mister Lucky: [sighing] You’re welcome to stay for a bit, I guess.
Baco: I have plenty of places I could go, and was planning on staying regardless of your permission. Now then, where’s your library? There’s a book I’ve been meaning to read…

[The Animajor and the Righteous Smidgen appear in the middle of rural America, along with Perverto.]
The Animajor: Why were we all sent here?
Righteous Smidgen: I think it’s because none of us were pulled from anywhere. We just showed up.
Perverto: Whatevs! Smell you later!
[Perverto leaves, plodding towards the sunrise. A farmer grazing his cattle in the surrounding fields sees Perverto, screams out something about an alien invasion, pushes over one of his cows, slices open its belly, and tries his best to hide inside.]
The Animajor: [turning to the Righteous Smidgen] So what will you do?
Righteous Smidgen: I think I’ll go visit the Paragon People. Perhaps they’ll let me stay with them for a bit, perhaps be on their team. What will you do?
The Animajor: I don’t want to be considered a villain. I’d like to be a hero, so I think I’ll work on that. At the very least, perhaps work my way up to anti-hero status. If you know where the Paragon People are located, I could possibly drop you off…
Righteous Smidgen: Captain Depresso said they were currently based in a town in Indiana. Woburn, I think he said.
The Animajor: All right. Off to Woburn, Indiana, then.
[The Animajor picks up the Righteous Smidgen, holds the diminutive hero in his hand, and away they go.]

[Back in Detroit, Shoshy Raphael enters city hall. The secretary looks up at him.]
Secretary: One moment please.
[The secretary looks down at the desk and concentrates on her work for only a few seconds before she realizes to whom she was speaking. She looks back up at Shoshy Raphael, smiling nervously.]
Secretary: Mister Raphael! We didn’t expect to see you back!
Shoshy Raphael: Obviously not. Now then, what’s occurred while I’ve been away?
Secretary: Crime went way down, which was good. So did super heroic activity, which should make you happy because I know you don’t appreciate the superheroes. The hospital opened their new wing, a new library opened, an older library burned down, and you were replaced.
Shoshy Raphael: Very good. I’ll be in my office if you need me.
[Shoshy Raphael takes three steps, stops, blinks, then turns suddenly to his secretary.]
Shoshy Raphael: I’ve been replaced?! You can’t replace me! I’m the mayor!
Secretary: “Were” the mayor. Sorry, Mister Raphael. Your successor, a Mister Hain —
Shoshy Raphael: [stroking his chin] Hain. Hain? The name doesn’t–wait, you mean the costume shop mogul? That “Mister Hain”?
Secretary: The costume shop mogul and new mayor of Detroit, Mister Raphael. Anyway, Mister Hain said there’s a room for you in his mansion should you need it.
Shoshy Raphael: Let me guess. His mansion is actually MY mansion.
Secretary: “Was” your mansion. Again, sorry, Mister Raphael. Oh, I almost forgot! Mister Hain also insisted that I hand this message to you personally.
Shoshy Raphael: [sighing] Well, I might as well take a look at it.
[The secretary hands over an envelope, sealed with the mayor’s wax stamp.]
Shoshy Raphael: [mumbling] Hain already has a mansion. No reason he needs two of them.
[Shoshy Raphael heads outside, opens the letter, and reads it over once, twice, and a third time.]
Shoshy Raphael: Hm. What an interesting offer, I must say. Almost makes being ousted from office worth it.
[With a grin, Shoshy Raphael folds the letter and places it into his pocket. Walking forward, Shoshy Raphael melts into the bustling crowds roaming the streets of downtown Detroit as the early morning sun rises into the daytime sky.]

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Keep the Weekly Recaps?

Posted by meekrat on July 23, 2010

If you guys want me to continue the weekly recaps, here’s a few things you could do:

1) Send money.
2) Show an interest in the other things on here. We all work very hard on all the fiction and whatnot on this site (we are, after all, a Meekrat Entertainment Group) and would really like it if you paid more attention to it. This involves reading the various stories, voting on the March Meekrat Madness stuff (which is almost over now), and commenting on the stories (we can’t get better if no one gives us reasons why).
3) Join the message boards and be active on them.

If the apathy about the other things continues, then I see no reason to continue doing the Weekly Recaps.

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Posted by meekrat on July 19, 2010

This week’s commentary and a lot of the resolutions and intros will go up on Tuesday, so check them out when they get updated. Voting, once again, will end on Thursday.

RESOLUTIONS THAT HAVE GONE UP TODAY:
Agent Villain VS Leo Leoplous
Charleston Charge VS Mister Frink
Shoshy Raphael VS Purga the Demon-Thing
Baggy Satan VS Leo Leoplous

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Matt Omley’s “Purple Lamp: The Movie” (unedited)

Posted by meekrat on July 6, 2010

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Archaic English Society Month

Posted by meekrat on June 29, 2010

This one didn’t take me nearly as long to do as the Free Comic Book Day Man one for May, but it didn’t turn out exactly how I wanted. Sort of angry about that. Anyway, yeah, July is Archaic English Society Month! See you then.

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Tweetable Movies

Posted by meekrat on June 19, 2010

Well, folks, I’ve got a bunch of DVDs here that need watching, but being spoiled for choice is never too good for me. So remember that thing I did with “The Incredible Petrified World”? Well, let’s do that again. Thing is, I’ve got over 40 movies here that need watching, so I’ll list off the movies here and one of you folks can tell me which one to do. If more than one tells me which one to do, well, then I’ll do them in the order I’ve got them in. So here’s the movies. Keep in mind that I haven’t seen any of them (save, perhaps, one of the Gamera movies) so it’ll probably be as new as it is to me as it is to you. Here’s the list, separated by disc:

Horrors of Spider Island
The Wasp Woman
Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet
Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women

Kong Island
Bride of the Gorilla
Attack of the Monsters
Gamera the Invincible

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (I have this?)
Teenagers from Outer Space
Rocky Jones, Space Ranger: Crash of the Moons
Rocky Jones, Space Ranger: Menace from Outer Space

Hercules Against the Moonmen
Hercules and the Captive Women
Hercules and the Tyrants of Babylon
Hercules Unchained

Lost Jungle
Mesa of Lost Women
Assignment: Outer Space

Killers from Space
Phantom from Space
White Pongo
The Snow Creature

Son of Hercules: The Land of Darkness
The Giants of Rome
First Spaceship on Venus
The Alpha Incident

Astral Factor
Galaxy Invader
Snowbeast
Unknown World

Blood Tide
The Brain Machine
The Wild Women of Wongo
Prehistoric Women

Warning from Space
The Phantom Planet
Planet Outlaws

Colossus and the Amazon Queen
Eegah
Cosmos: War of the Planets
Destroy All Planets

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