Sinister Six: Revenge of the Scissor Army
Rich (Bombman) Kassidy
6 - Storm Clouds Gathering
Mere hours after the assault on both the S6 HQ and Dr Light’s lab, the newly resurrected General Cutman had just arrived at his old base beneath Arizona’s desert to take inventory of his forces. As he descended into the abandoned mine shaft and complex maze of caves that made up his long time home, he conferred with his second in command.
“I assume you had no problems with installing the custom AI in these Joes, then? How about with our officers? Have they been completed as smoothly?”
“…We now have a total force number of 50,126 troops, but with the complete loss of our infantry division we-“ was all Colonel Red managed to get out before being cut off by his commanding officer.
“The ENTIRE INFANTRY?! All quarter million storm troopers obliterated?!” he screamed as he stomped into the giant holding cave that contained the entire force mere months ago. The entire floor was covered in melted plastic, Kevlar, and iron hard puddles of metal that once made up the 250,000 “Infantry Joes” that were completed just as the General met his demise at the hands of the Sinister Six.
“I had expected some losses if I had somehow been defeated, but every last soldier? They must have been destroyed before the stand still protocol had taken effect. Damn them!” the enraged General cursed. “Alright, I’ll consider this a small kink in the overall scheme of things. They can be rebuilt. So, since you’re here, I assume they never suspected that the military chips I ‘borrowed’ from that Italian lab were hidden within our catacombs here?”
“…They never checked the blocked off entrance. Your camouflage worked perfectly and it allowed me all the time I needed to prepare everything.” Red explained.
“At least we have that going for us. And with Light out of action for at least the next few days, we can plan our immediate assault. Meanwhile, I’ll see what goodies I can extract from these neat little trophies.” The General said as he held up Rockman’s functionless cranium and gestured to the confiscated computer from Light’s lab. Light was obviously being very careful with that computer, especially if he kept it away from any networks. He didn’t want just anyone hacking away at it…”
“…Sir, may I inquire where exactly our first assault is aimed at?” the red-clad Colonel questioned.
“Let’s see what our forces are capable of in our own backyard. In two days, Phoenix burns to the ground.” The mad General sneered.
Now gathered in one spot within Doctor Light’s lab, the Sinister Six were weighing their options…
“That’s crazy, man! You can’t really be serious.” Erik shouted at Ben’s first suggestion.
“You’re damn right I’m crazy, but I’m also serious. We went in there before and kicked his ass with just three of us. Now, all six of us are in place and ready to rock. Not only that, but five of us are already many times stronger than we were before. If there’s a time to fight, now’s it.” The fiery crime fighter retorted.
Gary chimed in. “Look, we are in a lot better shape right now than last time, but then again so is Cutman. Not only does he have that guy in the cloak on his side, but he also managed to kill Rockman! In all his years of fighting Wily, how many times has Rock died? And in three minutes at that! Let’s not forget that he apparently had some of his soldiers hidden away, and we have no clue what these guys are capable of or how they are still around. From what it sounds like, we’d be walking right into a suicide machine if we went there without knowing some more.”
“And I’m kinda accustomed to breathing these days.” Odin slyly slipped into the conversation.
“Guys…You think we should call some others into this? I know it’s our problem, but it could easily become everyone’s problem if we just let it sit.” The silver sheared Cut-Chan suggested.
“That might be our only option if a frontal attack is what we’re planning here, but I’d still like to know the situation a little bit better before sending in even more people to die. And don’t forget that Dr Light and Cossack haven’t been on speaking terms for over a year now, so the Comrades might be out, and the Mechs always demand money whenever we ask for their help.” Erik reminded.
“God, I forgot about that. Those cheap bastards…” Gary said with a sigh.
“If I remember correctly, they are anything but cheap.” Fushi piped in.
“I hate to say it, but I think we should wait and do what Erik says and get some more info on them. With any luck, Cuts won’t start anything right away.” Gary settled on a decision.
“I don’t like it. It’s too risky. For all we know, he could be building even more of those troops right now and planning something big right now. How can you say we’re supposed to just sit around and wait for him to make the first move?” Ben argued with an increasingly raised voice.
Look, have you completely forgotten what this guy is capable of?! He nearly killed us the first time, and came even closer the second. The only reason we beat him is because of a mistake he made; not because we were better than him! Do you really think he’ll just roll over and die when you confront him? He’ll slaughter us if we go in there blind!” Iceman screamed back
Caught off guard by Gary’s emotional argument, Ben, as well as the others, grew silent for a few minutes to take in the severity of the situation.
“…I’ll work something out with Gauntlet and his crew, but I don’t know about Cossack. But…We’re not doing anything until we know exactly what we’re up against.” The now slightly taller Eskimo silently compromised as he left the room.
After a few more minutes of minutes of uncomfortable silence within the rest of the S6 ranks, Odin yet again chimed in.
“Is it me, or is Ice Boy a bit more high strung than usual?”
“He almost got killed the last time. I don’t think he’s really all that eager to give Cutman a second chance.” Britt reminded the gold and copper commander of electricity.
“But its not like we can just sit here and do nothing. Are you willing to shoulder the responsibility when that orange bastard eventually gets his crap together and starts slicing up innocent civilians? Look, we’re not dealing with some dictator or warlord here- we’re dealing with a straight up psycho. Somehow, I don’t think the Geneva Convention really applies to screw jobs like him.” Fireman continued his argument.
“And just what good will getting ourselves killed at his front door do? I’m still with Gary here- we need to know what we’re up against. THEN we can beat him.” Erik rebutted.
With a resounding growl, Fireman punched the wall and exited then room, fed up with arguing with those not in agreement with him.
“I kinda agree with him, y’know? Are we just gonna let Cutman get his things together and THEN go out and get him?” a quiet Fushi said, trying to convey Ben’s message with a different method.
“I know it’s not easy. I don’t like the position we’re in right now any more than you do, but we don’t have much of an option. If just one of us gets put out of action out there and Cutman gets away, we might not be strong enough to take him out later.” Gutsman reasoned, obviously getting a little tired of the argument.
“…I hope you know what you’re doing, Erik. Either way, I don’t think anything ahead of us will be easy.” Fushi said, sullen as she remembered more fragments of her encounter with the General.
In the other room, Gary was sitting next to the videophone, hesitant to call the Mechanical Maniacs. Finally, he gathered his wits and asked the computer-controlled screen to dial the Mech’s home base.
“Hello, is this Lennon?…Hey man, how’s it goin’?…Well, funny you should ask that…We kinda need some help…”
As Gary conferred with Geminiman and the rest of the Mechs, General Cutman was mulling through the numerous files that were kept on Dr Light’s private computer. Puffing away at his signature cigar, his crooked grin only widened as he learned the truth behind his enemies’ origins, as well as dozens of other secrets that only Dr Light himself was privy to.
“…Well, doesn’t that beat all?” he exclaimed as he put his large, orange booted feet on his beat up desk. “Now, things have gotten even more interesting!”
7 - Marching Orders
“I don’t understand any of this. How could his army have survived? I thought you destroyed it…” Gauntlet wondered aloud to his fellow super heroes.
Much like the Sinister Six, The Mechanical Maniacs had also received new upgrades over the past few months. Gauntlet, or Shadowman as the public better knew him, was no exception. However, Gauntlet received far less upgrades than you would have thought. This was because of more than one reason behind this. One part of it was from Gauntlet’s own decision to rely on his own abilities as a Robot Master, even going so far as to not have an HUD system equipped. Even if Gauntlet had wanted to have many of the upgrades his allies had received, Light claimed it nearly impossible to do so to Shadowman’s body.
It was a highly kept secret among the small group of heroes that it may have been quite possible that Gauntlet’s body wasn’t of this Earth. Watching Shadowman in action easily backed up this assessment, as he had the ability to turn his body into a shadow- something no Earthly technology was capable of. Not even Light knew how Dr Wily came into possession of this strange technology, but he also knew it wasn’t easily replicated. What everyone was left in the dark about was how it worked exactly, save for Doctors Light and Wily. Even Light’s attempts to replicate his own version of this tech always ended in failure.
Shadowman’s body was a miracle of science, perhaps even a gift from the heavens. However, it wasn’t invincible by any means. Many of the modifications that made Shadowman a Robot Master instead of some space debris were more conventional in origin. His face, for example, was much like any other Robot Master’s- it was mostly a latex-like polymer that mimicked real human skin, right down to false blood vessels and even the ability to appear tanned. It could also be damaged, as evidenced by a fresh scar in place of where his right eye would be. It was definitely distracting to his friends on the S6, who hadn’t even heard of this latest change of Gauntlet’s character.
“I…wish I had the answers for you, G. If I did, things would be a lot easier, you know?” Gary answered his ninja- like friend, trying to not look directly at his recent disfigurement.
Gauntlet and the rest of the Mechanical Maniacs were already told the story of Cutman and his army of the apocalypse. Even after hearing that story, however, they couldn’t grasp the situation at hand. It seemed a little far-fetched for their tastes, even if it was coming from the mouths of their closest allies in crime fighting. Was it possible that Ice and his crew were blowing this out of proportion just a little bit?
The two old friends further continued their conversation, discussing everything from what Cutman was capable of, to any sort of possible battle strategies they might have to rely on. Gauntlet quickly put to rest and doubt that Gary was making too big a deal out of the situation. In all their years of friendship, Gary was never known to be the serious type, but this recent stress was definitely wearing on Iceman. Eventually, the conversation began to lighten up and the two began talking more as they usually did. But, the conversation eventually hit a wall when Gary managed to summon the nerve to ask Gauntlet about his obvious injury.
“So…what happened with…that?”
Gauntlet knew this would eventually have been asked, but he still didn’t know exactly what to say. Drawing a shallow sigh, he began to explain his new cyclopean eyesight.
“It happened about three weeks ago. I was checking out a bank robbery one night- you know, nothing too hot- by myself. Everything was going pretty smoothly at first, but I suppose I just got kind of careless with one of the goons and he managed to fire a few rounds at me. Well, one of those bullets managed to nail me right in the eye. That’s pretty much it, really. Not really the most romantic story, huh?”
“Y’know,” Gary began “Light could fix that pretty easily, I’m sure.”
“I know. But, I’m not going to have it fixed. Not now at least. I’m going to keep it like this for awhile, as a reminder of what being careless and under estimating your opponents can get you.”
This line reminded Gary of Ben, who kept his armor’s battle scars in disrepair for almost the exact same reasons. Still, an eye is a lot more to lose than a pretty sheen on your armor.
“Kinda harsh, isn’t it? Won’t you be affected by this?” Gary asked in a concerned tone. He didn’t want Gauntlet going into battle under par, after all. He might lose more than an eye.
“It’s a harsh world. We’re here to keep it from getting a little too harsh. The minute we start making stupid mistakes, we put more than ourselves in danger. That’s why this’ll serve as a reminder not just to me, but to everyone here.”
Gary couldn’t help but admire Shadowman after a speech like that. Still, it would take more than some fancy words to take out their mutual enemy, who without a doubt would make the first move.
Halfway around the world, as the Sinister Six and Mechanical Maniacs conferred with each other, General Cutman and his army were making the final adjustments to the plan to take Phoenix. However, Colonel Red had grown concerned over a revelation he had just a short time ago.
“…General, I have every notion of confidence that our storming of Phoenix will go smoothly, but what are you going to do about the eventual retaliation by the U.S. government?”
“That has already been worked out, Colonel. I assure you, everything will go off as planned. If anything, we’re ahead of the game, as the Sinister Six and Dr Light tend to keep things like this a secret in hopes of covering their own hides. I’m sure Dr Light wouldn’t want the United States to know that he developed such a highly intelligent robot such as myself and do something irresponsible like keep it a secret.” The General sneered in response.
“…I see.” Was all the crimson draped Colonel Red said in response.
“Are we just about finished with our preparations? I’d hate to waste any more time here when we could be destroying a city.” Cutman said, changing the subject.
“…Yes sir, I believe our troops and their COs are awaiting final orders of deployment.”
“Excellent! Then, let’s get this party started!”
Cutman clicked on his own hidden radio receiver within his ring-like ears to address his COs one last time before he sent them into the city to unleash hell upon the unsuspecting citizens.
“Captain, do you copy? Over.”
The response came back in a matter of seconds in a static haze. “Loud and clear. What are your orders, General?”
“We shall proceed as planned with no changes. Just keep in mind that I want a few key points within the city to remain intact and free of damage. Other than that, have fun. Over.”
“Hehehahaha, yessir, General! Commencing mission at once! Over and out!” the maniacal voice proclaimed.
As soon as the transmission had ended, large formations of the Scissor Army Special Forces began to mobilize and march to the surface, where they would teleport into town and immediately begin to wreck their vengeance upon the hapless citizens of an unsuspecting city. The grinning General could only fold his arms in a proud, fatherly approval as he watched his soldiers, his handiwork, begin what was sure to be his glorious campaign against humanity.
CHAPTER 8- War Crimes
Beaming just outside the capital of the state of Arizona, a force of robots 10,000 robots had just arrived, preparing their assault. It could only be described as a shear wave of camouflaged troopers, each with the preprogrammed notion of destroying every last organic being within the city ahead of them. They sorted off into different locations around the city, blocking off nearly a quarter of the urban environment before they began their assault. Then, as the Special Forces had finished shuffling positions into their pre determined positions, the highly regimented army marched into the city to send a clear message to anyone who would stood in their way.
Leading the way were some highly armored Joes, aptly dubbed the “Armored Joes”, who were former Hammer Joes with heavy steel plates wielded to their arms and backs. These monstrous robots lumbered on ahead of the rest of the troops, crushing buildings and people alike with no discrimination. Within mere seconds of their utterly sudden entrance to the city the residents had began fleeing in the opposite direction of the incoming invasion. Wasting no time in responding to the hostile guests of their city, the Phoenix police department was on the scene within minutes of the first shots, but they were ill equipped to take on such a large-scale force.
Leading this battalion was the commander for the entire ground invasion force himself. Standing at an even six foot two inches tall, this tiger-striped camouflaged machine sneered at his victims as he watched his perfectly programmed troops end their lives without any fanfare or bravado. Unlike his troops, however, he took great pride in his “work” as he carefully dealt with randomly chosen humans, who tried in vain to escape the wall-like wave of metal-made monsters. His carved up facial features lit up with joy as he watched men, women, and children become engulfed in the quick maelstrom of hellish heat that was delivered by his arm-launched bombs. Laughing almost hysterically with each death dealt by his hands, the scarred up sociopath felt truly alive only when he was taking someone else’s life.
This was the Special Forces Earth Shock division leader: Captain Crashman.
Rebuilt from a burnt out husk left by Rockman, Crashman’s body had to be completely disassembled and rebuilt by the General, who redesigned Crashman’s systems from the ground up. Being that he was the first of Cutman’s line of Commanding Officers to be completed, Crashman was given the duty of overseeing the largest portion of the Scissor Army. However, the Captain lived for something else than the simple slaughter of these weak humans- he wanted revenge against the one being that defeated him. He wanted to slice up Rockman’s face just as his face was.
Crashman’s face was left in tatters because of Rockman’s particular method of defeating him, which was the use of the Air Shooter to blow his own bombs back into his face, blowing it apart. The General tried to rebuild his face as best he could, but sewing was not his forte. Besides, Cutman figured, the scars would prove to be motivation enough each time Crashman looked in the mirror. His face was a jigsaw of latex and metal chunks poking through in some places, providing a truly horrific appearance to anyone who happened to be unfortunate enough to see him in person.
However, with the sudden defeat of Rockman at the hands of his own leader, Crashman seemed a bit aloof. He even started to hold a grudge against his own re-creator. To deal with this would-be lack of motivation, Crashman began to focus solely on the tasks that were given him, including the destruction and capture of Phoenix. Thus, Crashman has taken a new hobby of watching the various reactions that adorned his victims’ faces as he watched the life fade from their eyes.
Using the more than two dozen miniature missile launchers spread about his entire body, Crashman could easily clear an entire city block within a minute. But where was the fun in that? Instead, he sent out “warning shots” into the foundations of some buildings, causing the residents of which to come pouring into the streets to escape the fires within. They were just like scared sheep to him, ready to be sheered and slaughtered by him and his troops. It was only when got bored with a certain neighborhood that he decided to annihilate it and move on to the next. It all moved so quickly. Within half an hour he had seventy percent of the residential areas crushed and under his unwavering control.
“Come in, Lieutenant…” the Captain called to his accomplice, who was busy working on the industrial section of the city. “What is you status?”
After a few seconds of silence, an annoyed voice shot back a quick response:
“We’re nearly finished in this area. We’ll meet up with you within thirty. Over.”
“You just make damn sure you don’t touch that factory the General briefed us on. You can torch everything else around it for all I care, but if that freakin’ factory is left with so much as a scorch mark I’ll unscrew your head and shove a bomb into your cranium.”
“I’d love to see you try, but just know that I’ll do what I need to. Over and Out!”
“Damned spacey bastard.” The less than bemused Captain muttered to himself. He didn’t really get along with many of his fellow Commanding Officers, but a select few of them really grated him the wrong way. His strict control over his third of the Special Forces seemed to really irk the officers that worked underneath him, all save for the ego-less Joes, who followed any and all orders without so much as a whisper of malcontent. When not mulling over his latest battle plans and strategies, the orange hued walking missile launcher spent almost all of his time carefully inspecting his troops, which was apparently paying off as he watched them work to perfection.
The Phoenix Police Department was in shambles now. With each new unit that was assembled and sent out to fight off the invaders, two more squads were killed off within seconds. This clearly wasn’t a job for civilian officers, and it may not even be something the US Army could handle either. It was easy to lose hope with all of your teammates dying off as if they were ants being crushed by a curious child, but it wasn’t an option for these officers to give up, even if it spelled certain doom.
This was especially true for one bomb technician in particular, who had just been called from his vacation time to join the others. Suiting up his heavy flak jacket, he climbed into an awaiting SWAT van as it began to speed off into some war torn neighborhood.
“So Rich,” a mustached, black vested friend of the bomb tech began, “what have you heard so far about this crap that’s goin’ on? I haven’t been able to see what was going on with the news.”
Rich Kassidy was a sleepy eyed individual who had just transferred to the Phoenix PD from the Midwest in hopes of finding a quieter way of life within his stressful occupation. What a joke. If he wanted to deal with something like this he’d have signed up for the army instead. At least that paid better. Despite his pessimistic outlook on his current job situation, he retained a somewhat cheery disposition, although he often remained quiet around his fellow cops.
“I dunno man,” he began to answer, “I only got to see the news for a few seconds before I was out the door. But from what I’ve seen, they’re babbling something about some sort of invading robot army. Probably BS though.”
“Heh, what’d I tell you man? The damn machines are takin’ over! It’s just like that nut job in Oklahoma’s been sayin’ all this time…”
“Nutjob? Which one?” Rich asked coyly.
“Y’know, that one who claims to be a champion for human rights? The guy with the electric stick.”
“Pssh, whatever man. All I know is there’s something not right about this whole thing. I’ve got a bad feeling.” The heavy suited young man said with an obvious tone of pessimism.
Suddenly, the boxy van that they occupied came to a halt with a screech of the tires, throwing it’s occupants forward violently.
“Goddammit! Don’t they teach these punks how to drive anymore?” the mustached cop shouted in annoyance.
Rich merely opened the heavy doors of the van to see what was the hold up and was shocked by the horror that was presented to him.
“Jesus…” he whispered to himself.
Nearly every building in the stretch of road that was once a prominent shopping district was destroyed, left in a smoking heap that remained in their place. People of all shapes and sizes lay within the street in all sorts of conditions, from just plain dead to completely blown to small fragments. There was blood misted over everything and it’s stench permeated the air so much that it was nearly overpowering. This was a scene that would have been common place in the Middle East not too long ago, but here? In a quiet city like this? Who could do this?
He soon had his answer, whether he wanted it or not.
Glancing down the street he caught a glimpse of a small group of cameo-clad troopers in assorted patterns and colors as they made their way to the next avenue. At first, Rich had assumed they were the US Army or Coast Guard, given their movements and sweeping patterns when checking up on the dead bodies. It wasn’t until one of them shot a severely wounded woman in the head that he realized otherwise. Without much thought, Rich reached for his own sidearm and began to run after the group of soldiers, all the while his own unit was busy looking down the other end of the street as another set of troopers rounded the corner and immediately opened fire on the SWAT team. Nobody saw Rich take off on his own.
Silently but swiftly following the trail of the strange soldiers, Rich eventually watched them meet up with who he presumed to be some sort of leader. He was a rather large, bulky character in what appeared to be some heavy looking battle armor. He had never seen anything like it before, so he assumed it must have been some sort of high tech combat gear that someone in some lab made for war. Rich hadn’t been noticed yet as he watched a pair of camouflaged troops drag over a young woman and her wailing infant child in front of the bulky orange boss.
“…And yet another useless human being that won’t ever grow up to be a super hero or fireman or whatever human children dream about becoming these days. I’m doing you and this kid a favor by killing you so soon in this war, lady. It’s just gonna get even worse for all of mankind the longer you resist.” The Captain sneered, readying his cone shaped bombs.
“N-no! Please! You’ve already killed his father, so what else d-do you want from us?” the mother pleaded.
“I thought I made that clear enough already. Guess you’re too stupid to really grasp your situation, huh?”
Crashman slowly took aim with his bomb equipped left arm as his troops began to move backwards to avoid the ensuing blast. However, before he could launch it a voice rang out from behind him.
“Freeze! Stop where you are!” Rich screamed, not really thinking of the consequences of his actions. *What the hell am I doing?* he thought to himself.
But it was too late now. He couldn’t just run away now. They’d kill the mother and kid AND they’d surely chase him down and do the same. If he was going to die, he sure as hell didn’t want to go out exhausted, or without doing something to try and save at least one or two lives. It’s what he was trained to do.
“Eh?” Crashman let out in surprise as he turned around. “Someone’s THAT stupid? You really think I’m gonna drop what I’m doing just because you say so?”
The Captain’s troops all raised their rifles up to simultaneously kill Rich on the spot. However, their orange-painted leader stopped them as their trigger fingers began to pull back.
“No…Let me deal with him.” Crashman leered as he noted the “Bomb Technician” markings on Rich’s flak jacket. “Alright hotshot, I’m gonna do you a favor. I’m gonna give you a chance to prove that you’re worthy enough to live…for now. Pass, and maybe I’ll be extra generous and spare the dumb blonde and her screaming kid.”
Crashman launched his Crash Bomb into the ground in front of the mother, who grasped her child on the ground at the Captain’s feet.
“Since you’re so damn good at what you do apparently, since you came in here all by yourself., deal with that. Disarm it, and all three of you walk. Fail and…well, I assume you can figure that part out.”
Rich very slowly began to inch closer and closer to the sunset-colored being in front of him, and even closer to this apparent bomb. But it didn’t look like any bomb he had ever seen before. It looked like a high tech ice cream cone to him, with the silver cone part buried halfway into the earth, and the bright orange globe atop it was filled almost completely with some sort of liquid.
“Gasoline…” Rich noted to himself as he smelt the fumes. “This thing goes up and it won’t be a quick way to go.”
He was completely unsure of how to go about it. But he had to try. The frightened mother looked him in the eyes, pleading with him, hoping he could help her escape her situation. That was all the encouragement he needed. He pulled his small screwdriver set from his inner pouch and began to pry away the thin access panel on the side of the cone-shaped device. Carefully feeling out the tolerance of the panel, Rich managed to finally get it off after what seemed like days. Within the bomb itself was a very simple mechanism, which caught him completely off guard. Such a space age looking weapon using the most basic bomb tech around? It seemed like a trick if there ever was one.
But, even after snipping the two wires that connected the fuse and the liquid fuel inside it made no motion what so ever. Apparently, it was as simple as it looked.
“Well…” Crashman said with a high tone as he smiled at his kneeling quarry. “Seems congratulations are in order!”
The Captain then revealed another Crash Bomb and plunged the large device directly into Rich’s chest, causing blood to spray forth and into the air. Crashman let out a low growl of approval as he watched the heavy set human stumble to his feet and shakily take a few steps back, convulsing madly from the sudden shock. The bomb itself haven’t really hit any vital organs, but the shear shock of having anything of that size plunged into your chest cavity would be enough to kill almost anyone. Unfortunately for Rich, that wasn’t the case as he looked at Crashman’s twisted features as the sick commander laughed at his plight.
After a few minutes of this gruesome show, Crashman finally grew bored and gave Rich a final look as he activated the bomb’s detonation fuse, blowing the human to pieces.
CHAPTER 9- Natural Forces
By the time Dr Light’s lab had received the news of the events going on in Phoenix, half of the city was already ruined and engulfed in the flames of war. The Sinister Six and Mechanical Maniacs had all gathered in the large living room of Dr Light, who had still been recovering from his wounds, to watch the scenes. A feeling of helplessness has swept over every one of them as they could only watch the scenes of carnage from the helicopter-mounted camera provided by the news channel.
“Oh…God…” one of them uttered in horror. That pretty much described the feeling in the room.
“We were…too late…” Gary muttered in dismay.
Ben reserved his “I told you so” for a different time, as this wasn’t nearly the time to start tossing an accusatory tone around. Instead, he could only ask the simple question everyone else had been thinking for the past few minutes: “What do we do now?”
There was a slight pause as the more leadership-orientated figures in the room silently mulled over a few options. Gauntlet finally spoke up with his suggestion.
“There’s no point in all of us going there right now. By the time we got there they’ll have cleared out and they might start to strike somewhere else.”
“And what about all those people?” Odin asked in a frank manner. “There’s still human beings over there dying by the dozens, and you want to continue to just sit here and let them do it? You can’t be serious.”
“Look…” the ninja-themed robot began his explanation, “It takes just under fifty minutes to teleport from here to Phoenix. They’ve already destroyed half the city in half that time. It’s simple math. If we leave right now we’re going into enemy territory with still no clue as to what we’re dealing with. This isn’t Dr Wily here, obviously. I don’t think even Wily would sink to this level- he wants to rule mankind, not kill it.”
“Dammit…You’re missing the point!” a new voice shouted from behind Odin and Gauntlet. Much to everyone’s surprise it was the usually silent Magnetman, who was clad in his usual attire of a long brown duster and matching wide brimmed hat. Magnetman, or Jonathan as his teammates knew him by, had long since adopted a “sheriff” motif to go along with his love of all things Old Western. In fact, when it came time for him to have his new body fitted, he asked for his Magnet Missiles to be left out in favor of his twin Colt Single Action Army revolvers, which he had become quite adept at handling.
His magnetic powers, however, were vastly improved. So much so that some speculated that he may be the most powerful of any active Robot Master, or any past one for that matter. With his previous body, Jonathan was capable of creating a magnetic field around himself to shield and deflect bullets and other weaponry, but he couldn’t do much else with the power. It required amazing concentration on his part just to form the shield, let alone do anything else with it. However, it was different with his new body. He now had the power to create magnetic fields and control them at will. If something was made of any type of metal that could be attracted by a magnet he could make it do anything he wanted- bend it, make it fly around at blazing speeds, break it, just so long as he could see it. In a world where nearly everything was metallic, he might be considered a god.
Somehow, though, this power didn’t really appeal to Magnetman, who mostly used his brilliant trick shooting to handle his quarry. He practiced with his revolvers on an almost constant basis, much to the chagrin of his housemates, who had to put up with the loud gun shots emanating from within the Mechanical Maniacs’ basement-turned-shooting range. Besides that, however, Jonathan was a reclusive individual that was seen almost as rarely as Shadowman. However, at this moment he was making his presence known and heard.
“There are still people there. Innocent people that need our help! And you’re going to sit there and just let them die without doing a thing to help them in any way? What the hell happened here? You’re talking like a corporate numbers man, here.”
There was a stony silence within the large room as all eyes remained focused upon Shadowman, who’s single, silvery eye stared blankly at his teammate as he contemplated a more easily received response. Finally, he settled on a compromise.
“…You know that nobody will be left by the time we get there. But if you still want to poke around for yourself, go ahead. But we can’t all go, as we might have something else-“
Erik had cut him off mid sentence as he drew attention to the gigantic television that was still playing on the news. “Look!”
The fourteen androids focused on the television, which was bringing an update to the current situation in Phoenix.
“…And apparently, this…’army’, as it’s being called by the police, has been sweeping through the city at a frightening pace! Already, ninety percent of the residential area has been annihilated, and there has been no word of any survivors. This can only be described as a…as a massacre. Oh God…it’s….just…Ugh, I apologize, ladies and gentlemen. We have just received word that the entire Phoenix Police force has been wiped out…I don’t what else to say…”
Magnetman said nothing, only using the reporter’s horrified explanation as motivation enough.
“I’m…I’m going with you.” Odin offered.
“Be my guest. The rest of you stay put. If they do strike elsewhere, you’ll need to move fast. Just don’t wait until the last minute- we’ve already screwed up enough already.” Magnetman barked at his fellow heroes as if he were the official leader of the lot.
After Odin and Magnetman had departed, Fushi finally broke another awkward silence.
Each of the remaining heroes in the room acknowledged this with some small gesture. It was true. They were supposed to be heroes. They weren’t supposed to gamble with people’s lives. At that moment, each of them made a solemn vow to do what ever it took to stop this army. Whatever the cost.
Exactly forty-eight minutes from their departure in Okayama, the pair of crime fighters, Odin and Jonathan, had beamed into the heart of the city. Everywhere they turned were the signs of war. No. Not war. This was a slaughter. It was a scene that could only be described as ghastly, as random fires burned various structures- cars, building, even giant piles of human corpses. It seemed almost impossible that such devastation could happen within a major metropolis in just under two hours. And without using any sort of large warheads or even vehicles, no less! It seemed as though they had to fight the armies of Hell itself if such devastation could be brought about with only ground troops.
Magnetman scowled slightly at the scene from behind his ever-present visor, angered by the horrible setting he found himself in.
“…It’s what he does.” Odin could only offer as an answer.
“Then I guess I’ll have to show him what I do then. C’mon, let’s see if any of these rotten bastards have stayed behind.” Jonathan threatened his yet unseen enemy as he twirled his revolver in hand.
The two trudged forth, eventually getting used to the lingering odor of ozone and blood that saturated the air. Neither of them could look more than two feet around them without finding themselves looking into the fear frozen face of one of the Scissor Army’s victims. Neither of them had ever seen such destruction, even when they considered their many day’s experience as professional disaster relief specialists. Not even a hurricane could have done what the army had done to this city.
“I don’t get it…Why blow away an entire city and not stay behind to claim it?” Odin questioned aloud as he noticed the lack of any being, robot or otherwise, as they trekked through the ruined streets.
And suddenly, the answer has presented itself. In the middle of the residential section, a lone factory remained. It was untouched. Pristine, even. It was surreal amongst the decimated landscape around it. But what was it? Could the Scissor Army really have destroyed an entire city for a single structure?
The two looked up, noticing a steady stream of white smoke pouring out of the chimneys of the factory, and on the stacks were an even more telling sign: the US Army insignia. Obviously, the two had already set on entering the building, as they could find some sort of answer within presumably.
As the two pushed open the heavy, partially broken steel doors, a scream rang out from within a nearby neighborhood. Odin and Jonathan immediately forgot about the factory to respond to the pleas, but Magnetman stopped his partner in his tracks.
“I’ll check it out! You see what you can find in there! We don’t have a lot of time before we have to get back!” he explained.
Odin obliged as he watched Magnetman dash off towards the source of the scream. He couldn’t help but admire the Sheriff’s selflessness at times.
Another family lay on the broken concrete, shivering with fear at the sight of this strange creature before them. He looked like an astronaut with his large gold dome covering his entire head and metallic, reflective red space suit covering his body. He even bore the famed NASA badge on his right chest, but the American flag was nowhere to be seen on him. Instead, a strange stencil insignia replaced the Stars and Stripes, which seemed to resemble a pair of scissors. But the family had different concerns other than discovering the meaning behind the symbol.
“Let us go!” the father of the family pleaded. “We haven’t done anything!”
“Yes you have. You, and all your kind, have done so much harm to this world that it may never be able to be repaired. But, I’m wasting my breath on scum like you…” The red and gold robot exclaimed as he raised both hands menacingly. But before he could do whatever it was that he had planned, a shot rang out from behind him.
“I think you had better rethink your definition of ‘scum’.”
A pair of spurs clanged ominously from behind a building, as the pair of oversized boots that belonged to them slowly and almost casually walked towards the space suited robot.
“And you might be…?” was all the red suited robot calmly asked.
“The new sheriff. I’m here to bring some law back into this town. And I guarantee you that you ain’t gonna approve of my methods.”
The crimson hued Robot Master squinted from behind his gold tinted bubble at his opponent. He grinned slowly as he realized who he was staring at.
“Original…” he hissed.
“What?” Magnetman asked, uncertain of what was said and still twirling his revolver on his finger.
“Original!” he repeated with excitement, as if he was seeing a long lost uncle. “Don’t you see? Don’t you see what I am?”
Magnetman looked at the strange figure for a second, trying to figure out what he was saying. Then, suddenly it became clear.
“I’m honored that you remembered me, Original. After all, I was born of your technology. Thanks to you, the true potential of gravity was finally unleashed and granted to me. I AM gravity itself manifested. And once this plague is wiped clean from this planet, I will finally be able to achieve the goal for which I was created.”
Jonathan looked at this odd robot quizzically from behind his visor, obviously in doubt of his sanity. “Goal?”
“I am meant for the stars! This planet is not my home. I was created for much better things. I was supposed to be the first bipedal being to ever walk the planets of the solar system! Instead, that fool Wily stole me halfway through my completion for his halfhearted attempts for domination. It wasn’t until the General found me and rebuilt me to my true form so that I could fully realize my ultimate potential.”
“So…The deal is you become ‘General’ Cut’s lapdog for your own selfish reasons? I think I’m about to do you a favor…” Magnetman threatened as he motioned for his belt mounted revolver.
The two began a traditional stare down under the setting sun. Magnetman had no idea of this supposedly “fully realized” Gravityman was capable of, but he was no push over himself. Gravityman simply stood in his place, straightening himself from his slightly crouched state that he gave his speech from.
“Just say when…”, Magnetman taunted.
After a few tense seconds of stand off, Magnetman made his move, whipping his sidearm from its resting place with inhuman speed, firing a single round off with half a second. He was curious as to what the creature could do, so he decided to test him with a single bullet.
As Jonathan surmised, the bullet was stopped midway between the two enemies, trapped in an invisible force of a gravity-free vortex. Gravityman sneered as he watched the bullet hover in mid air, then was suddenly reminded of his other “guests” as they let out a gasp of amazement. The family that he was threatening just seconds before were still frozen their place, forced to bare witness to this strange encounter. Gravityman made no move to turn around, and instead rolled his eyes to the side to focus a bit of his attention behind him.
Suddenly, a tremendous rumbling sound, as if a train was derailed mere feet away, began to sound from beneath the family. Within a blink of an eye, they were crushed by some unseen force, reduced to a smear inside of a small crater where they had once been. Magnetman grimaced at the gruesome scene, further angered by this monster in front of him.
“They got off relatively easy compared to most everyone else earlier today. I doubt they felt a thing.”
Gravityman’s words brought no comfort to Jonathan, who began to fire off the rest of his Colt’s five remaining rounds. Gravityman began to use debris around him to block and deflect the shots as he reduced the gravity in his immediate area to near weightlessness. He laughed at the antique gun’s firepower, as it was quite easily dealt with by someone with his sort of power. Using his power to keep the various chunks of broken concrete in place, Gravityman began using wide, sweeping kicks on them, sending them flying into his enemy’s area. Magnetman, who had no control over earth-based rocks and concrete, had to dodge them the old fashioned way by leaping and diving in between them. It was quite easy for someone with his sleek build, but he could see that his revolvers may not be enough to finish this fight.
Holstering his Single Action Army, Jonathan prepared to use his rarely used control over magnetic waves to counter the raw power of his opponent, but he was unaware that Gravityman’s power worked much like his did. Gravityman’s control over this natural force was only simulated, as it used much of Magnetman’s technology to bend a planet’s own magnetic field to create a faux gravity. It was for this very reason that Gravityman would have worked so well on unfamiliar planets. However, here on Earth it was a devastating weapon, lending him tremendous crushing power and maneuverability within his own gravity vortex.
Jonathan raised his arms up with his fists tightly closed. He found that mimicking a traditional magnet shape with his torso helped channel his power with more accuracy, but he was quickly finding himself at a disadvantage against Gravityman, who had seemingly complete and utter control over his abilities whereas Jonathan always struggled to control his own massive might. Focusing only the wreckage around him, he managed to pull up two massive steel girders from the ruins and remotely throw them at his opponent like a javelin.
Smirking, Gravityman stood directly in their path with his arms folded, swatting the beams away with his invisible force.
“Come now!” he taunted. “I would have expected my Original could come up with something much better than that!”
Not the least bit daunted by the insult, Jonathan decided on a more direct approach. He turned his power directly towards his enemy, believing he might be able to shear him in half and end this fight quite easily. But, that wasn’t the case. Though Gravityman continued to stand in front of him in an unflinching, mocking pose, Magnetman’s power wasn’t able to touch him. Not in the slightest manner. It was like throwing water onto Teflon.
“Ceramic.” Gravityman stated with a smile. “My entire outer shell is constructed with ceramic plating. Not a solid ounce of steel or iron was used in my outer structure.”
Jonathan inwardly cursed his luck. Of all the Robot Masters to fight, he had to pick the magnet-proof one.
“Well, I’m getting a little bored. What say we turn it up a bit for excitement’s sake, hmm?” Gravityman challenged.
“Up to you, kid. Don’t think it’s over yet.” Jonathan said, trying to keep his cool in the face of his opponent. In truth, he was beginning to get worried.
Gravityman let out a quick “hya!” and a wave of invisible force began crushing the already broken cement on its way towards Magnetman. It was a devastating attack, Jonathan observed, as the earth affected by the power looked as though an invisible giant had stomped on the ground. He made a mental note not to find out what would happen if he messed up and found himself at the epicenter of the attack.
The Sheriff found himself doing more defensive work than he was used to, avoiding the multi angled attacks and flying debris with increasing difficulty. At this rate, it was only a matter of time before he made a small slip up that would cost him dearly. He had to do something fast or he’d share the same fate as that poor family within minutes.
Pulling his second revolver from it’s resting place on his belt, Magnetman backed off a few steps to prepare his next move, which was a trick even he had not perfected yet. Intrigued by his quarry’s latest tactic, Gravityman backed off on his assault for a moment to see what his “Original” was about to attempt.
Using all five of his digits on the hammer of his revolver, Jonathan unleashed all six rounds of the handgun within a second- a feat any old fashioned gunslinger would have envied. Gravityman had prepared another round of rocks to deflect the incoming hail of bullets, but much to his surprise they never came.
Instead, the old fashioned ammunition remained floating just in front of the barrel of the gun, hanging very closely together. Slowly holstering his sidearm again, Magnetman began to seize control of each bullet individually, causing them to orbit him. By this time, Magnetman’s power was slightly visible as it attracted bits of stray metal particles from nearby, giving it the effect of a strange, black and white energy field swirling around the red and black robot with the Western theme. The bullets gradually picked up speed as they swarmed around Jonathan, who’s face began to contort under the heavy demand of concentration needed for such a feat.
Gravityman made an audible whistle as he acknowledged the amazing feat. On some subconscious level, he might even have been proud of what his Original was capable of. But, he still had to prepare for the next part of this attack, as he was sure it was no parlor trick meant to impress. Magnetman did not disappoint as he let lose a single shot launched at super sonic speed. Gravityman barely had any time to react as a stray piece of debris happen to float in front of him, deflecting the mach-cruising bullet. He began to grimace himself at this latest attack method, as the bullets were far less predicable than when they were fired from a gun. The swirling mass of metal particles helped to camouflage the exact location of the bullets within the matrix, making it impossible for him to judge exactly where they’d be launched. Magnetman himself was placed much too far away for Gravity to make effective use of his Gravity Hold on him, and his debris attack probably would make it past that barrier of his. Even his “ultimate attack” would have been too slow moving to catch him before he shot the rest of his rounds off.
So, Gravityman now found himself being the one forced to duck and dive an assault. He had five shots left to dodge, so he would need all the cover he could find. Jumping atop a large pile of debris, he reduced the pulling force of the rubble to zero, causing it to float upward slowly and slightly. At this time, another shot was loosed from the magnetic maelstrom that surrounded Jonathan, narrowly missing the domed space bot. Within a few seconds, yet another bullet was launched, this time shattering his helmet almost completely as it barely missed his face.
*He’s getting closer! Got to pay attention!* Gravityman warned himself inwardly.
Another few seconds pass and another shot was fired, this time it was dodged quite easily.
*Two more…Just two more…* he again thought to himself.
The second to last shot came within mere inches of his knee, nearly throwing him off balance in the process. Noticing this, Jonathan wasted no opportunity to use an opening to make the most of his last shot. Whipping the bullet around at even faster speed, he unleashed it at his foe. However, Gravityman regained balance at the last instant and barely escaped it as it whizzed past his mechanical ear. Giving a resounding “HAH!”, Magnetman had one last trick up his Kevlar sleeve as he snatched the bullet out of the air using his magnetic power and directed it back towards Gravityman, who was caught completely off guard as it entered his left shoulder from behind.
Gravityman let loose a wailing scream as he clutched his oil spewing shoulder with his good arm. The bullet must have fragmented within, wrecking havoc on his arm mechanics but nothing especially vital. Still, it hurt like hell and angered the Commanding Officer even more. Letting loose a ferocious yell, Gravityman bellowed at his attacker.
“I’ve played around with you enough!! It’s time to show you the true meaning of power, and the full potential of Gravity himself!!!”
Almost forgetting about his injury altogether, Gravityman raised both arms and sent a massively powerful wave at Jonathan, who was winded from his display of concentration and power. The Sheriff barely managed to raise his own exhausted arms to counter the brute force that seemed intent on crushing him. Already at a slight disadvantage, Magnetman was already weary and his body was showing signs of giving out as his main electromagnets, which were mounted within his forearms, began to spark and belch smoke. He was already beginning to lose ground as the two invisible forces shoved each other, creating a high pitched hum that caused any remaining windows in the area to shatter.
Electrons were forced together, releasing a flurry of red hued spark and electricity, and small bits of concrete were shoved away by the forces at work. The earth itself shook beneath their feet as loose bits of concrete began to crumble and fall deeper into the Earth. Forces that were dreamed of by geologists and feared by scientists in the magnetic field were all being released in a hellish fury as the whole area seemed to grow unnaturally dark as dust was flung into the air, obscuring the sun. Then, another sound made itself heard, as Gravityman was laughing maniacally as he realized his great advantage over his Original. Pushing himself further, he poured even more might into his onslaught, causing Jonathan to lose even more ground. The epicenter of the two forces being forced together against their will was now mere feet away from him, and he knew that if it got any closer his body would implode upon itself. Suddenly, though, a thought entered his mind through the unimaginable focus needed to maintain his defense.
He focused on his enemy’s shoulder as it continued to ooze oil. He stared straight at it, unblinking, even though this was causing him to lose even more ground. However, it was showing it’s effects, as Gravityman felt something going horribly wrong within his body.
“W-what? What are you…? This is…impossible!!”
Gravityman began to scream as the bullet that was lodged in his upper arm began to move and jerk around, further causing him even more pain. Managing to ignore the pain for a few seconds, Magnetman focused even more on the fragmented bullet within his foe. Gravityman suddenly twitched slightly, and the bullet erupted from his right cheek, tearing his face apart in a cloud of oil and coolant. Forgetting his current situation for a millisecond, Gravityman reached with both arms to grasp his wounded face. However, he immediately realized what he had inadvertently done, as his eyes grew wide with surprise and horror.
“N-“ was all he managed to sputter as his own power, pushed by Magnetman’s, was forced back at him, causing his entire body to be crushed in an instant. The wave of concentrated energy continued on its way, completely breaking down the street it traveled on and sending entire buildings into the sky until it finally disappeared from sight, no longer controlled by a single being.
Jonathan crumbled to his knees in a pile. His entire body was in a white-hot world of pain, as most of his internal circuitry and mechanics has burned themselves out sometime during the fight. It seemed almost impossible in itself that he lasted as long as he did, as his lubrication system had stopped working when the two warriors began their “test of strength”, leaving his sore joints to further endure the ungodly friction of the electromagnet’s high velocity spin.
Still, he managed a small smile, a small chuckle even as he lost consciousness and fell to the broken earth at his feet.
CHAPTER 10- Crash Proof
As his partner Magnetman left towards the screams of the family, Odin entered the dimly lit factory through the drab olive painted doors. He was greeted by the tremendous sound of a thousand machines all
working a full pace. He couldn’t see exactly what they were working on just yet, as crates and boxes of all shapes and sizes obscured his vision. Hoping he still had the benefit of stealth on his side, Odin began snaking his way through the maze of boxes, hoping to get to the bottom of this strange setting. Eventually finding his way past the wooden labyrinth, he finally came across the answer to the question of what this factory’s purpose for being was.
Already completed were dozens of new Sniper Joes, each painted a dull hue of green or orange. At the rate the factory was working, a new Joe was ready every three minutes for it’s AI system to be installed. But, strangely enough, nobody was doing so. Not yet at least. Instead, the Joes were lined up in a corner of the room near a shipping door, presumably to be sent to where ever Cutman had ordered them to be. Obviously, Odin wasn’t about to sit by idly while he had an opportunity to stop these things from leaving this factory, but he couldn’t very well just blow up the place.
Instead, Odin looked around the loud setting to try and find the control room. If he could overload the electrical systems, he wouldn’t have to blow up the entire building, and he’d be able to escape in the confusion. After what seemed like an eternity of peering behind objects and simultaneously checking over his shoulders for possible enemies, he finally found the room, which was half hidden behind several unfinished or defective Joes. Checking the massive room over once again, the conductive robot bolted across the open space between him and the control room, praying silently that he wasn’t spotted. It seemed as though he had made it, as he was within ten feet of the doorway without any sign of trouble.
Suddenly, however, he was forced to come to a screeching halt as the familiar scream of a missile sounded off behind him as a rocket crashed into the mortar above the large metal door, making entry to the controls very difficult. But now, entry to the electrical room wasn’t his priority at this point- it was finding out where the missile was fired from. This was easy enough to solve, as the source of the projectile made no effort to hide himself from his launching point half a football field’s length away. Stepping through the thick white smoke generated from his attack, an orange and white cameo pattern robot stomped forward slowly and confidently.
Captain Crashman didn’t say anything for a few seconds after coming into plain view of the Sinister Six member. He wanted the hero to take in full view of his body, sure that Elecman would show signs of fear. Instead, he was met with Odin’s sarcastic wit and tone as he began his verbal assault.
“So, what the hell are you supposed to be? Cutman’s personal jack-o-lantern?”
Crashman sneered instead of becoming insulted.
“Just as I expected you to be. Want to take another guess as to who I am?”
“…I know: Puzzle Face, right?”
Crashman roared with laughter, bemused with Elecman’s attempts to enrage him.
“Hahaha! No…I’m the one that should have been the one to kill Rockman. He’s the one that gave me my charming good looks, you see.”
“I think he did you a favor. It’s quite becoming of you, actually.” Odin quipped.
“Think so, eh? I was hoping to see how he looked with a carve job of my own, but I suppose I’ll have to settle for you instead, as well as the rest of your pals.”
“I think you’re forgetting who you’re dealing with here.” Odin grinned as he stood up straight, implying his own power. “I’m no pushover, and I sure as hell won’t let you get away with what you’ve done here today. Destroying an entire city is one thing, but to do so in such a ruthless manner…And for a single factory, no less! You’re…inhuman.”
“You’re damn right we’re not human. That’s the point, Einstein. And do you really think this was all about some stupid factory? Ha! The factory was just the icing on the cake for us. We weren’t here for the factory at all…”
Odin looked at the bulky Commanding Officer befuddled.
“’Icing on the cake’? Then what, pre tell, did you annihilate an entire city for, then? A lack of parking near that cave you cockroaches occupy?”
“Heh, nope. We did it to test out what we could do. I gotta say, we can do A LOT. Sends a pretty clear message, don’t you think? It’ll send an even bigger message next to what’s going on within the hour.”
“What? What’s going on in an hour? What are you monsters planning?” Odin demanded.
“What do you think? We’re talking war here, kid. We sure as hell didn’t want to take over some dump in the middle of the desert and call it a day. This was only the beginning!” Crashman bragged.
“…No…You may have started it, but we’re going to end it!” Odin claimed as he realized he may now be on a time limit to warn his comrades back in Okayama. He would have to defeat this…this demon in a handful of minutes, and he would have to make his way back to the center of the town to teleport out, as they would no doubt have put up an anti teleportation net over the city, leaving only a small hole in the center to which to “beam up” from. He could only hope the Sheriff would return from helping who ever was screaming and assist him in bringing down this foe.
But he couldn’t afford to wait. He had to act now if he was to make it back to Light’s lab with enough time. He could only hope that he wasn’t too late already. Not wasting anymore time with words, Odin began to yell as he generated powerful strands of synthetic lightning from his palms, letting the electrons build up. But before he could even let the Thunder Beam fly, Crashman had launched another barrage of missiles from across the cavernous room. Cutting off the power of his thunder, he switched to evasive tactics as he began maneuvering between the speeding rockets, hoping to get in close enough to use his broadsword and hopefully end this fight quickly.
But the missiles never stopped. One by one, barrage after barrage, they constantly rained down upon the lighting wielder, keeping him from mounting any sort of offensive. It was the perfect defense, really- pin down your opponent with enough firepower and they’ll never land a blow to you. The rockets never stopped. Odin had begun to wonder how it was possible. Even with the abundance of launching points on his body, Crashman had to reload at some point. But he never did. It just never stopped.
Seeing no other option, Odin decided to go for broke. He knew his body could take one or two hits from the small explosives, but too many would put him down permanently, thunder or no thunder. Drawing his large copper blade from it’s leather holster at his left side, he charged his opponent, doing his best to avoid the constant steam of projectiles, even jumping atop one or two using his famed speed to gain more range. Eventually, he was a mere ten feet away from Crashman- close enough to do some serious damage to anyone.
Using his sword as a powerful conductor, Elecman released a giant storm of golden electricity into his opponent’s chest, which had a perfect target in the form of a large green orb. Crashman screamed in pain as arcs of electricity ripped through his torso, and then his head and mouth. He eventually collapsed somewhat, still on his feet albeit. Black smoke poured from his crevices and into the air, mixing with the already thick white cloud discharged by his constant barrage of missile fire. The smell of an electrical fire became strong in the air, filling Odin’s nose and odor sensors. He had smelled this scent many times, and he had come to associate it with victory itself. But knowing he hadn’t much time as it was, he cut his inner victory celebration short and sheathed his sword once again, turning towards the door behind him.
But he was again stopped by a sound behind him. It wasn’t the sound of a missile launch or rocket, but something even more frightening. It was the sound of laughter, and it was coming from the apparent husk of a robot Odin had defeated, or so he had assumed he had defeated. Instead, Crashman straightened himself upright, and cracked his neck, still chuckling.
“Impossible!” Odin shouted at him, refusing to believe that his broken opponent was laughing off one of Odin’s most powerful attacks. In all of his years of fighting, not one opponent thus far had gotten up from the Thunder Beam, especially when he used it in conjunction with his sword.
“Heh, nope.” The Captain claimed as he rotated his arms in an attempt to loosen his mechanical muscles. “Lemme let you in on a little secret, thunder boy. The General…he fears you. He fears you more than any of the other Sinister Six, or even the rest of those powered down tin cans you call heroes. Or…he did, at least. You see, he’s been watching you for so long, he kept all of this in mind when rebuilding us Commanding Officers, knowing that the day would come where one or more of us would have to fight you. And I gotta say, I finally understand what he was so worried about. You pack a hell of a punch there, kid, I’ll give you that.
But, with the General’s Crash System in place, all we gotta worry about is making it past the pain and our bodies will hold up on their own. I was the first built with the system, and he wasn’t really sure how it’d work in combat. I’ll have to congratulate him the next time I see him, as it passed my test with flying colors.”
Odin’s mind was playing back a bit of memory from nearly a year ago, when Cutman confronted the Sinister Six within that factory in Italy. It was there when Cutman was able to get the upper hand on Odin and the rest by using some sort of silvery gelatin to prevent him from using his awesome electrical might. The Captain’s explanation, though a bit biased sounding, made perfect sense now, even if Odin didn’t want to believe it.
“It can’t be…Nothing I’ve ever seen can with stand my power! I can power an entire city if I need to!”
“Ha, that may be so, but it obviously wasn’t enough to beat the General’s system.”
Odin was losing time. If his Thunder Beam couldn’t put him down, he’d have to rely on old-fashioned swordplay instead. But he’d have to get past the missile barrage once again, as Crashman had already started firing. Pulling his sword out it’s resting place once again, Odin again made a beeline towards his foe, dodging each rocket with even more speed than last time. The pressure of time was pushing Elecman’s systems to their limit, as he began contemplating what was at stake. But this pressure began to lead to sloppiness, as the Crash Missile’s were getting closer with each one that Odin dodged.
Eventually, Crashman stopped for a second, leaving Odin an opening that he wasn’t about to let go to waste. Running at full speed, he was within a few yards of Crashman when the Captain let loose an inescapable assault launched from each of the 34 missile docks on his body. The near-three dozen strong barrage enveloped Odin, who was too close to avoid them. He cursed himself for falling for such an obvious ploy- he had rushed himself and was now facing the force of thirty rockets, each with the power of a full stick of dynamite.
Refusing to just stand still, Elecman tried his best to avoid every one of the mini bombs that he could, but as they hit the ground around him he quickly started running out of room. Eventually, he was finally struck with one of them, which led to the rest of the missiles an opening to strike. Despite dodging two thirds of the total number of missiles, about a dozen had managed to hit his body in various places, tearing up the copper and Kevlar armor of the Robot Master as he screamed from the pain of the assault.