Psychonomous Gex! The Rise of Psycho Gecko, Part 3 or “Back to Your Regularly Scheduled Programming”
Psycho Gecko steps out of the fancy penthouse bedroom, tossing a bottle of Mr. Morden’s expensive brandy against the second-story railing. Harlon, at the foot of the nearby stairs, winces at the crash of the liquor bottle and tinkling of broken glass. “Um, Mr. Gecko, is something wrong?”
Gecko chuckles, then calls down, “Not a thing, Harlon, he’s dead.”
Harlon blinks and takes a moment thinking of a safe answer, “Uh…um…I didn’t think you’d make it so quick.” Gecko walks down and lays a hand on Harlon’s shoulder. Harlon dips his shoulder a little, hoping in some way to lower himself from under the villain’s grip. “But however you want to do things is fine.”
“Relax, Harlon. I just didn’t feel the need to really explain myself to him. One of the rules I was taught, and stick to sometimes, was that if you’re going to kill someone, you don’t spend a few minutes letting them know everything behind your evil plan. You kill them.”
Harlon tenses up, prompting Gecko to laugh and state, “Don’t worry, I’m not going to kill you unless you betray my trust.”
The look on Harlon’s face makes it clear to Gecko that either the fat executive isn’t so sure that’s a great idea, or his underwear just filled up. Gecko reaches into the pocket of the trench coat he now wears over his armor’s chest piece. Harlon starts to shrink away, but Gecko merely pulls out a pair of sunglasses that he slides onto the man’s face.
“You are my number one guy,” Gecko begins as he leads Harlon out, his voice now lacking the combined menace and playfulness that has tinted most of his conversations with hapless businessmen of late. “I’d like some money diverted my way, and if I need anything disseminated through your end of the media, I’ll let you know. Probably won’t come down to that. You, meanwhile, will likely face some sort of promotion thanks to your boss’s unfortunate overdose on several illicit substances connected to his odd actions at his office. There, he called up a couple of guards to the office where he began his little binge, leaving puke and dropping some sort of explosive out the window. Or possibly the explosive was unrelated. The two guards are probably embarrassed enough that they’ll accept any story that doesn’t let the truth get out, especially as the truth reflects poorly on their abilities and strength of sphincter. From there, his car was spotted being driven erratically to his penthouse weaving in and out of traffic, running several stoplights, and playing blaringly loud techno music. Any of those, of course, being a good reason to pull someone over. You don’t know what was up with your fellows who died at the bar, or even what they were doing there, and neither of us know why people are eating fried pickles. You’ll do well there.”
“I’m only there because I’m family. I didn’t do what my mom and dad wanted, so they’d rather put me in some job at my uncle’s company so I wouldn’t do something embarrassing, like teach. I really have no responsibilities. I don’t know how to run it.”
Gecko presses the button to the elevator, then points his finger right in his companion’s face, “I don’t believe you.”
“You handled being kidnapped, tied up, stroked like a cat, dumped helpless on top of someone while three supers fought nearby, and you didn’t even lose your cool when I PIT maneuvered that cop car. You can handle the pressure.”
“But I don’t really KNOW anything.”
“Psh. You can learn that stuff. You act like someone with family connections like yours actually has to know what they’re doing before they get the job.”
The door dings as it opens and they step inside, the murderous villain continuing the pep talk with his hostage, “When I was a teenager, me and the others in the program were put into a room with a burger in our hand and a pit bull, just to see what kind of people we were. When it growls and starts after you, some people run away. Other people run at it. You don’t learn that.”
Harlon relaxes with a sigh and speaks up as they ride the elevator down to the ground floor, “What about your story?”
Gecko leans against the side of the elevator, “Good man, Harlon. No reporting of it at all. You will never tell it to anyone. Stay quiet and we’re cool.”
“You know, you’re not that bad of a guy for a supervillain,” Harlon blurts out.
Psycho Gecko suddenly grabs Harlon by the shoulders and pulls him in for a hug. After a couple of awkward seconds, he lets him go and speaks, “Well, the whole mass genocide and destruction of a world or city was all…letting off steam. Finding my own way in life. Whoops,” he throws his hands up, “I overreacted. To tell the truth, I’m happier here. All this tonight was much smaller than my old death tolls. This guy wouldn’t believe anyone could or would kill him, and it’s fun to disprove that notion to someone who believes that. Fun, that’s what I’m about. Sometimes that means stealing money to fund my amusements, killing people or superpeople, rapid-fire digestion of pop culture, or even something as simple as reading an online serial about superheroes.” With that, Gecko counts off the walls of the elevator, then turns and smiles at the fourth one, which then opens up to the lobby.
“Maybe…we could hang out sometime?” Harlon asks, painfully aware that he’s been treated more like a person by the crazy killer who used him as a cat than most of his own family.
Gecko shakes his head, circuitry lighting up under his skin just as the helmet of his armor reforms over his head. Then, trench coat and all, he fades to invisibility.
“Sorry, Harlon, you don’t need that kind of fun. But I’ll be in touch.”
Harlon just scuffs his shoes at the ground before realizing he doesn’t have a ride. And that his offer was incredibly dumb. 10 minutes later, he’s walking along the road. A man steps out of an alley, holding a gun. Harlon doesn’t freeze, or try to run. He stops. The man steps closer, holding out his other hand, “Do I really need to ask?”
Suddenly, the hand with the gun is wrenched to the side. The man is thrust into the air, his chest bursting out as he’s held in the air. His blood reveals a fist plunged through his ribs. The fist opens up like a mouth as a voice babytalks, “Rawrs! I are scary monster. I run away now and come back big like a full sized man in a suit!” The man is flung off to the side Psycho Gecko deactivates his stealth mode, arms wide. “Ta da!”
“You know, Gecko, you didn’t have to kill him.”
“Supervillain. Deal with it,” Gecko says with a shrug, then remembers to push the body off his arm. “Here, dude, how about we walk and talk til you find a ride?”