Category Archives: 10. Get Wrecked

Yeah, let’s tear this Liberty apart!

Get Wrecked 11

Legs are back and working just fine after a little jabbing with needles. I had to sit around, but the Reds didn’t come back. The Greens and Yurples are gone too. The guys in charge have changed up where they’re hiding. The Reds are outright hostile, Big Red having figured out what I did to get the Yurples on my side. I know that because another squad showed up. They opened up on the building with the humvee-mounted minigun.

“Yeah, you gonna fuck over anybody, ain’t you? Well you ain’t fuckin’ over the Reds! Not you or any other power hungry mad dog who thinks we’re nothing but labor to be used up and spat out. We’re the Reds! A family. A Soviet. A revolution.”

It sounded really impressive right up until I flung a headless rubber chicken out. They laughed at it even as it got to its feet and began walking. And walking. And boom. Then I was the one laughing. For the visually impaired, here’s the sound effects: “ratttttttttttta, ha ha ha, flooooong, boink, waka waka waka waka, fwoom!”

The Yurples and the Greens just bugged after all that because nobody wants to fight a heroic colossus. I tried to tell them we could just get some swords and some climbing lessons and take it out with a few well-placed stabs to the weak point, but they hung up. I guess it doesn’t help that none of them, not even the Yurples, fully got over me starting a gang war. Greed and fear of me is one thing. Fear of Paveman has overshadowed that, it seems.

That’s one thing Machiavelli left out of that little satire of his. Fear only works so long as you’re the thing they’re most afraid of. That didn’t mean I was out of cards to play, though. I took some footage out of the ole memory banks. Suddenly, the cops would like to speak to the bosses about their connections to arms dealing, prison breaking, drug trafficking, and not having tags on boat trailers.

As for going after Paveman…well…that had to wait until Halloween. There’s the truce for Halloween, and it’s just an occasion I enjoy.

There’s just something about Halloween. A holiday of costumes and masks. See, a lot of people in the U.S. get dressed up for it, but especially those with simple, childlike minds. So kids and politicians. Either way, you have lots of people running around in costumes and masks. A hero could drop in on his nemesis only to find he’s beating up his next door neighbor. A villain could kidnap some heroine he’s obsessed with and find out it’s just some random woman named Jenny.

So we take the day off. That simple. It’s more of a community thing. You know, there’s villain websites, villain news, even villain parties around. It’s not a huge deal. There are no gigantic team-ups in a legion or anything. They don’t invite me. They have all these unofficial rules, chiefly that you shouldn’t kill heroes. They gave me a shot, once, at a party. Some heroes they invited didn’t like me, though, and murdering a friend of theirs stuck in their craw a lot worse than just killing a hostage. The difference between the Them that don’t have powers or masks, and the Us that do.

I didn’t think it was that big of a deal. I was new. I’d made a grand entrance at the center of an explosion that wiped out a town. I was mysterious and dangerous. Boy was I ever mysterious and dangerous. I was also weak. First responders show up, with heroes among them. I couldn’t speak the language, I didn’t know where I was. I lashed out. Well, technically the guy with the whip lashed out. I just hung him with it. Hanged him with it. To this day, I don’t even know enough English to tell which of those past tense versions of “hang” is correct. But I know now that whippersnapper was the friend of a very annoying person with a shrill voice.

So after I got forcibly ejected by a talking erudite dinosaur, they explained why I’d no longer be on the mailing list. Something about escalation and other reasons. Ooh, I remember now. Because if heroes and villains fight but don’t try to kill each other, then people feel safer about the fact that people with superpowers are fighting each other but not killing each other. I think they were bullshitting me on that one, but I’m just not allowed at parties anymore. I suppose I can see the escalation thing, someone. I don’t need their stinkin’ community, though. With parties. And Blackjack. And hookers. Actually, one of the villains used to be a prostitute. Nice lady. Her name was Minnie the Moocher and I’ll have to tell you a story about her sometime. Ah, but I’m telling a little too much now as it is instead of showing.

I like the Halloween truce, though. It’s based on sound reasoning, and I am obviously a perfectly rational person. Plus, it’s maybe the only day of the year I have fans here. Not many, but they exist. Maybe

You know, the whole killing people all the time thing, that really turns off the costume makers. I get Icelandic death metal guys that like to run around pretending they’re into murder and mayhem while singing loud. They’re not here even on Halloween, though.

So I just kinda mingled. Walked around in costume with Moai by my side, out in the open, for everyone to see. There were no random high fives. Is it too much to ask that someone would just randomly want to high five me? Anyway, walking got boring, so we stopped by Central Park, which is the temporary home of the Statue of Liberty right now. Paveman took the day off from using his power on it. The only problem was finding a pose that worked. There were supports all in the thing, down to the base. He didn’t take the base, though, and the human body isn’t perfectly balanced. Throw in the wind, and there was potential for some real danger or embarrassment there.

The danger was if it fell over. The embarrassment was if he chose a pose like Lady Liberty on all fours. Instead, she’s got her arms out from her sides and a wide stance. Reminds me of Vitruvian Man, actually. I guess we’ll find out if Paveman is as good at balancing copper statues as he is at taking over them

I thought his power involved sucking up nearby rocks and stones and stoney-like things. I never really figured out how that applied to asphalt, but I figured that was just some sort of theme thing. I don’t know exactly how it works, and Paveman’s not talking about it, so I just have to assume he can pull that on metal. He must have tried to pull in almost the entire Statue, future chewing outs be damned!

As a man who uses metal on a suit to help protect myself from bullets, this ability is cause for concern. As a man vulnerable to being squished by something giant, so is what he pulled with the Statue.

I ran into him there, by the way. He and Apollo were posing for the kids, taking photographs, giving autographs.

“Hey,” I said, and gave a little wave.

“Hiya,” said Paveman. Apollo frowned.

“How’s the autographs going?”

“They’re ok. Thinking of joining me for a few? Play up the big fight?” Paveman offered. He may be old school and made of road that’s had roadkill on it…but Paveman’s got class. There are some concerned adults around and the cops are eyeing me funny, but I struck a pose.

“Moai, look threatening,” I said. He didn’t move. I checked the rear display. Nope. No moving, “I can see you didn’t do anything. I said look threatening.” Once again nothing. Then, he slowly began to tip.

“Look out, it’s gonna fall!” someone in the crowd shouted. Moai just held himself there. Itself. Whatever. It’s pretty much interchangeable with the big lug.

“Good job,” I told him. Then, to Paveman, “So, you want to lock up, or have us just about to punch or what?”

“Locking up isn’t very photogenic. Maybe an action pose, where I’m holding your throat and getting ready to hit,” he said.

“Good thinking. I can be kicking you in the stones,” I said.

“I like it. That image really shows how you fight,” he told me as I stood there and let him put his hand around my throat. He raised his hand up as if to swing an ungainly punch at my head.

Moai just tilted ominously near us, as if about to fall.

I grabbed at his wrist with one hand and lifted my leg, resting my shin gently between his legs as I spoke, “Well, I doubt they’d let us get away with me trying to stick my hand up your-“

“Whoa! Dad, you’re cool with this?” Apollo interrupted.

“Son, it’s Halloween. He’s not fighting, we’re not fighting,” Paveman tried to reassure his son.

“Yeah, for all you know I could just be a man in a costume, guy-whose-name-I-don’t-know-because-I’m-just-a-man-in-a-costume,” I said to cover my ass.

“A lot of us think that breaking the rules like you do means you shouldn’t be protected by them. I’m inclined to agree with them with the way you treated Venus and the Human Sloth. I heard you had to kill him because he was beating you in a breakdance fight.”

“Fool! Nobody can outdance me! Except for Stephen Hawking, that is, but I have sworn revenge upon him!” I yelled, throwing my fist to the sky. It stayed attached, in case you were wondering.

Apollo furrowed his brow as contemplated the implications of my outburst, “Definitely Psycho Gecko. You’re really like that all the time?”

I lowered my upthrust hand and answered with a question, “Like what?”

“You are fairly eccentric,” Paveman said.

“Such a statement from Mountain Man and Boulder Boy does not impress me. It wouldn’t even impress your friend the talking gorilla,” I turned away from Paveman to address the crowd, “We’re all different, unique even. Would you pave over those differences and stay a uniform cog in the machine? I hope not. Arete, my friends. Be the best you that you can be. For all your strengths and all your faults, be absolutely fucking awesome!”

I got applause, save for a few people with sour expressions and kids with innocent little ears who never heard the word “fuck” before no matter how many times their parents watched HBO or hit their own thumb with a hammer.

Despite the possibility I’d get to people, the heroes posed with me and we all had a time. Kids brought us candy, which is another good thing about Halloween, and then they left to go to some hero charity Halloween ball or something. Not even an invitation for poor lil Psycho Gecko. But that’s ok. I don’t need their balls! Psycho Gecko doesn’t need any balls at all!

What I needed was to finish work on my special weapon…the Heat Ray! Ok, it needs a better name. I can do this. Think, think, think…lightbulb! Beware, heroes, for soon you shall feel the wrath of my terrible Heatflasher! I’m just glad I didn’t have to give up my ride. I was considering cannibalizing my scooter for parts so I didn’t have to rewire a few things, but luckily I didn’t have to lose the Minstrel cycle.

Lady Liberty will be the first, something to draw their attention as I failed to merely amuse myself with it. Soon, this city will be forced to defend itself with a Shieldwall. Soon, it will be shattered…bwahahahahaha!

The Shieldwall, that is. I don’t care if the city is. Just wanted to clarify the subject there. Good grammar and all that. Oh, and I definitely didn’t mean the State of Liberty would be shattered, just in case you were wondering.

Now back to what I was doing before…Bwahahahahahaha!

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Get Wrecked 10

Yep, we got traitors. And obstructionists. And people who just didn’t want to go along with the plan at the last minute. Well I don’t need them! I didn’t want to pay them anyway!

I knew something was up. I got another email from Dame insisting that I had a leak. At first I didn’t know what gave her such special insight into my bladder, but then I realized she was just confirming what I’d somewhat suspected before. She never did clarify anything for me, though.

I suspect that she counted our little arrangement as over with by now. As far as I can tell, she wasn’t actively opposing me at the time. I hadn’t let her in on the scheme, but who knows how she’d have reacted as an art lover to my desire to update a national monument.

The Yurples did much better under the new management, though. Without their enthusiasm, I’d have never been ready for this at this point. Can you imagine, waiting even longer for this? I was beginning to suspect I’d never get to it before the big Halloween Truce. More on that to come, I’m sure, but for now I’ll just say that people tend to take a break when regular people start running around in costumes pretending to be monsters, sexy monsters, superheroes, supervillains, and sexy supervillains. Sadly, despite that last category, I don’t think anyone’s ever bothered selling a Psycho Gecko costume.

The whole thing actually makes Halloween one of the safest nights of the year, and one of the most fun. Some powers are pretty good for fitting in with the holiday, like pretty much anyone who can ride a horse and survive removing their own head.

But enough about Halloween, when even I won’t be riding dirty. Let’s talk about yesterday. We had gotten everything ready. After a car ride in full armor with some Greens who couldn’t appreciate Gwen Stefani’s “Wind It Up”, I arrived at the departure point. It was an old dock, with Lady Liberty herself standing straight off in the distance. It normally sees a less violent crowd mingling around. Not Yurple, Red, and Green squads all ready to haul ass on motor boats and helicopters. It was a wonderful sight, almost enough to distract me from my list of Greens to suffer accidents due to poor musical taste. Whether that’s poor taste on my part or theirs is probably up to you. Who doesn’t have a guilty pleasure?

All of a sudden, whammo! A car when flying right into one of the parked helicopters, causing the pilot to scramble for safety and a place to change his undies. Care to take a guess who was involved? That’s right, it was Paveman, who must have figured it was “bring your son to fight crime” day. Yeah, great time to deal with it. Even worse, the Reds were conspicuously slow to react. They were so slow, they moved further away and left all the fighting up to the Greens and Yurples, who were still strapped with various salvaged guns. I didn’t have Moai with me, though. Considering what was about to transpire, it was a good thing I’d left him behind to guard the Shithole Inn.

I had my air gun. Poor, nonlethal air gun. I walked calmly over the Green car, popped the trunk, and hauled it out. A couple of Yurples flew through the air past me as I looked it over, brushed off the barrel, and turned to see who would get a face full of my foul wind.

On the one hand, the Reds deserved it, the assholes. On the other hand, the heroes were doing a good job countering the exploding rounds from those futuristic weapons. Trash cans, dumpsters, car doors, cable spools, anything they could use to block the rounds, they tried. Instead of hitting and exploding against rock hard abs, a door would be hit and explode further away from the body, saving the physically tough heroes the full extent of the blow. This helped them get close enough to smack around the gangbangers.

Speaking of blow, I instead jumped for the retreating Reds. Big Red wasn’t among them, not for a betrayal like this, but this one skinny fucker I landed on would have to do. He went down a little too easily, though, and in the attempt to regain my balance, I felt my knee wrench in a way knees aren’t supposed to. I also felt a rib crack, but that was on the skinny man, so no problem there. The rest started running for it as I grabbed their downed friend.

I hauled him to his feet and gave a hard shove with my cannon, embedding the barrel in the unfortunate Red’s colon region.

“Yo,” I yelled, amplifying my voice through the helmet’s speakers, “Dudley Do-Right dirty dermis motherfuckers!” No response. The pair were concentrating on beating up my guys. I grabbed a shipping pallet and spun around, the wee skinny bent over Red man spinning with me. I let fly with the pallet, breaking it over Paveman’s head, who finally noticed me.

“Ah, good, got your attention. Now, face the wrath of super minion, dun dun dun dun!” I squeezed the trigger and held it there, After a long second of sliding and bulging in odd places, the Red took flight. He was propelled toward Paveman but sadly stopped short and slid along the pothole-ridden pavement.

“Well that blows. To the flying machine! And the swimming machines for those assigned to that duty,” I pointed toward the vehicles with the air gun.

“But boss, what about them?”

“These pet rocks will be useless on the water. Just make sure to circle around with the helo for me to jump aboard. They’re merely heroes, my good fellows. Now, get to the choppa!”

The remaining Greens dropped empty weapons and picked up hurt comrades. The remaining pilot hadn’t yet bugged out, but it looked like he was getting the rotors ready for it.

Meanwhile, I had to deal with the rocky hero pugilism show. They muttered between themselves, not sure who to go after. I made the decision for them. I settled the gun on my back with its strap. Then I jumped and flipped in place, activating one of my favorite illusions. I seemed to split in midair as the real me disappeared. The three separate holograms of me landed differently. One began to dance around like capoeira, another stumbled like a drunk man, and the third swayed, one hand emulating the head movements of a snake. One reacted more slowly than the others to charge in time with me toward the heroes.

Helped by Apollo, Paveman hopped on top of a cargo container and drew from it, creating holes and wearing it away as he drew it up into his own body, growing blocky and bulky and grooved in the process. Wait a minute. Metal? He’s done concrete, cement, pavement, asphalt, and rock. Metal is new.

I figured I’d keep an eye on him as I got in close to Apollo. He swung, fist moving right through the fakes. I threw punches to make it seem like they were somewhat real, for better confusion. Can’t exactly dance around with this gun on my back. The drunken boxer swung and I moved my fist with it, knocking Apollo’s head back slightly. The snake fighter went for a blow from one side as the drunken boxer went to strike again. I backed up the snake illusion this time. Then the capoeira fighte jumped in close with a flip. This time, I swept Apollo’s legs rather than pretend to be any of them. Apollo stumbled and managed to stand for a moment before dropping to his ass.

I wondered what his dad was doing and found him no longer on the half-consumed container. I turned and looked to find him having laid down small columns of metal down into the bay. Ok, got to give him credit. Don’t know where the creativity came from, but this time he got around me and was even small enough at the end that he didn’t capsize the boat he landed on. It helped that he tossed out the generators and welders after the Yurples who had abandoned ship.

That’s one plan that’s gone FUBAR. For those not familiar with the term, it means “fucked up beyond all recognition”.

I looked up and found the copter circling around above me. I had to get up there, but Apollo was back on his feet. I needed some space. The final frontier. Dropping the invisibility, I also dropped to my back and hit the jumper in one leg. When I kicked Apollo, it did a couple of things. First and foremost, I delivered Apollo into a Smart Car via air mail. Not the smartest move on my part, though, as it felt like I’d shoved my femur halfway up my dick. Which is also the only way I can explain the woody I had when all this went down.

I unstrapped the gun and settled the barrel against the ground to help me balance on my one good leg. Said good leg had a twisted knee from earlier, so I needed the boost from firing it as I jumped for my ride. It helped greatly that one of them got the idea to throw down a ladder, because I’d have missed. They helped me up too. Good guys, those Greens.

“Go, get out to the statue! Somebody, fetch me those rockets. I didn’t put up with all this shit just to give up after the first plan is fuck balls deep.” I held out my gun for a Green, who took it. Another loyal Green handed me the long metal tube of my rocket launcher. “Good, now somebody scoot me towards the edge.” A pair of Greens pushed me closer to the open door. “How many we got for this thing on here, anyway?”

“Three rockets, plus one in the tube, sir.”

“It’ll have to do. I don’t know what Paveman’s aiming for down there, but let’s sink his battleship,” I turned to find my target, only to find the clever little hero with the newly-revealed powers had gotten to Liberty Island while I was dicking around.

I wasted a shot trying to catch him at the door, but I have worse long range aim with explosives than a black Scottish cyclops. “Huh…oh well, not like hiding inside is going to save him. Circle strafe it for me!” Next shot, I aimed for the crotch. A Brazilian for the Frenchwoman! Not really. Can’t be that precise with these things, which is why this is a backup plan. Doesn’t help that these guys are out of whatever high-ex rounds they had, and their buddies in the boats are turning around for shore now that I’m giving the Statue a taste of my rocket.

We circled the statue. Brazilian, check. No breast implants, though. Had to go with a breast reduction. Oh well, it’ll help the old lady’s back. Blew the right one clean off. I guess we’re going for an Amazon look. Not much to do with the back itself. I was tempted to make that booty nice and flat, but the last one has to count. So clearly I had to go for the cheek lift. Problem is, I opened up a whole.

Well, crap. It’s just like Max told Good Doctor this one time, “Happiness is not a warm scalpel.” Or maybe Doc said that to Max. Maybe I just imagined someone saying it. Oh well.

Either way, I saw a slim and trim Paveman bounding along the walkway and grab some sort of handhold right near the face hold. He swung out along the face and seemed to meld with the copper to help himself up to the top.

What the fuck was he doing there, you ask? Don’t feel bad, I asked it too. But with fewer cusswords, you sick freaks. Now fucking pay attention. He made his way to the top of the crown and it looked like he was pulling in a shitload of that green copper. Then it all changed. He sank into it, like it was too much and it was eating him up. Then I saw the blasted portions and torn metal pull together and reform into an undamaged tarnished. Except the face, boobs, and crotch weren’t fully repairs. Nope. They became male.

“Back up, boys. Shit is going down,” I warned the pilot. He was right there with me and pulled back. The view he left me with showed a State of Paveman. I considered that maybe he wanted to do something like my plan.

Then he stepped forward.

One of the smarter Greens pounded on the back of the pilot’s seat. “Grab your shit, motherfucker, let’s go!” I had no disagreement. We hauled ass back to shore, although the Greens insisted they be let off. I dropped down with them. Good thing Apollo wasn’t still right there.

“Alright, boys, glad to see you’re still willing to put up a fight. I’ll tie up with the right arm and left leg. You guys, see if you can find something to take one of them off while I have it distracted,” I instructed and held up my glowing fists in an old timey boxing stance. I didn’t hear anything back. I turned to look and found they’d all made a run for the city. “Guys? Hey guys, where are you going, the fight’s this way!”

“Screw you!”

“Hey, you work for me!” I tried to point out, but they ignored me and drove off.

I just had to watch as Paveman swatted and kicked at the other boats. He plucked the gangbangers out of the water and held them in one giant, and presumably jolly, green hand. Then he turned to me. As I can’t really drain the charge from my gloves, I unloaded on a dumpster laying on its side. It didn’t reach nearly far enough.

I disappeared and only watched as far as Paveman yanking the escaping chopper out of the air and tearing the blades off.

Looks like someone took my lesson about stepping over the line for once. He got in a lot of trouble, but there’s a limit to how much even I could fight that thing. There’s also a limit to how long Paveman could possibly stay in there. Even by stopping me, he’s annoying Empyreal City to no end.

And, just to be clear, I do give the guy points for style. He’s living it up and doing Halloween parades in that thing, complete with that “Higher and Higher” song and a huge police detail. For right now, though, there’s nothing to do but put on a tan jumpsuit and try to get a picture with the thing, especially because none of the gangs are returning my calls. Like fighting a colossus is really that scary. Not that I’d do it alone right now.

I even found a bunch of beat up Reds around my apartment when I got back. Not only did they chicken out, they tried to come after where I lay my head at night. Once again, glad to have Moai there to stomp mudholes in those Bolshevik bastards. Especially with these legs.

Hope y’all have a Happy Halloween even without the destruction of a national monument. I know I’ll try to with the aid of lots and lots of candy, preferably stolen from humans that are incapable of walking on their own.

 

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Get Wrecked 9

It’s awfully hard for a guy to get some work done around here, even with these guys on my side now. If it’s not the questions, it’s them refusing to work as hard as I want. If they’re working, it’s the interruptions. If it’s not the interruptions, it’s the disloyalty.

Can’t a guy work on a way to kill a few hundred thousand people in peace?!

I mean, sure, I have those assholes gather up all the stuff we’ll need for the Statue of Libety job, at least when Paveman isn’t ambushing some of them in the line of duty, but my eyes have to stay on the prize. That means I spent a lot of time working on the gun that’s a major part of making that happen. The prize is the destruction of Shieldwall, utterly and totally, and that means I finish building this intricate piece of hardware. I can imagine the headlines now. “Stupid heroes defeated by handsome, dashing, and well-hung rogue!”

“Boss. Boss! Hey, guy in charge, can you hear what I am saying?”

That, for example, is the kind of interruption I had to deal with.

I turned away from where I was lost in my thoughts to look at the Green who’d been sent to inform me of something. What had he been sent to inform me about? Why are you asking me? Ask him instead. “What do you want?” I asked him instead.

“We got a problem. Those two heroes got the Yurple boss in custody. He’s down at the precinct right now.”

I looked up from my screwing. I mean, I had a screwdriver and I was using it. “How’d they know where he was holed up?” The leaders were now in other accommodations. We knew where they were, but the point was that the father and son heroes fighting against us wouldn’t.

Oh yeah, Paveman’s still around, still ok. Whatever the specifics of his power, it’s not limited to rocks. I don’t know if there’s much of the original man under all of it anymore, but it gives him a surprising ability to bounce back from injury.

“I guess that worked out for him, didn’t it? Didn’t want to bother making sure Paveman was finished and now he’s been spanked by him instead. You ever fought a team of superheroes?”

The messenger shook his head.

“Well that’s too bad and is subject to change. Apollo, he of the body of a Greek god sculpture, still has their number and we have a traitor.” That last bit was very possible, but I don’t know for sure. I have to either break out Yurple Nurple or leave him in there. The second option means his gang will become uncooperative. Uncooperative is unhealthy around me, but people have notably thick skulls. I should know, I’ve busted enough of them. Might have to bust Nurple’s head if I leave him, because there are legal benefits to talking about more important criminals.

In the interest of not being defeated quite so easily, it’s time to try and maneuver a loss or a setback into something more useful. Improvisation, if done properly, is how you turn a setback into something helpful or at least not harmful to your goals. It can also impart a psychological advantage to your actions if it appears that anything done to you doesn’t even slow you down. And if everything done to you helps you even more, then you’ll really get people freaking out.

“A traitor? Why do you think that?”

I grabbed the Green by his shirt and slammed him against the wall. Bringing my face closer to his, I growled at him, “Because we are the only ones who knew where he was. In fact, not even all of you guys knew where he was. This was someone in the mid-to-high information group. Middle management and up. The assistant director of Strickland propane is naming names to the heroes! Help me find him! This man won’t be king of the hill while I’m around…unless it was you.” I narrowed my eyes at him and raised the screwdriver in my hand menacingly. Believe me, this screwdriver wasn’t meant for drinking alone on a Saturday night.

“Hey, it’s not me! Geez, you’re paranoid.”

“Paranoid?!” I raised the screwdriver closer to his eye, “Who told you I was paranoid? I want names!”

“Nobody fucking told me you were paranoid! Don’t put my eye out, man. I don’t know anything!”

“Oh yeah? What’s the capital of France?”

His panicked answer was, “Napoleon, D.C.?”

I let him go. “Good answer. Just what I wanted to hear.” He really didn’t know anything. I set him down and tossed the screwdriver behind me. It landed with the sound of broken glass.

“Alright, I think it’s very important I get ole Yurple Nurple out of there. Then we can focus on the traitor.”

Sometime later, I finished explaining my plan to the other two bosses and a couple of their top guys via conference call.

“Why tell us all of this?” asked Mean Green. I still haven’t bothered with their names. Rather than calling one Bob, one Jane, and the last one Slagathor, I’ve nicknamed them Big Red, Mean Green, and Yurple Nurple.

“Just in case any of y’all were willing to help out a comrade in arms or felt threatened if I was to run around killing people at the lockup. I know you don’t have a history of cooperation, but it can be useful to coordinate information like this when working together. Especially when working on my noble mission to help what’s-his-name escape from police custody as he clearly wants me to. And I will answer that call, because I care about him that much. Whoever he is.”

“But he’s got a-,” Big Red started to say, but I interrupted.

“I’ll get with y’all about who owes me the getaway car for him, later, bye!”

I hung up.

Even later than that, I set up on the opposite side of a small park across from the police station. It was in a nicer part of town, not too far from where they busted Yurple Nurple. As far as I could tell from the reports, Nurple was out and menacing a waiter. Well that’s just stupid.

Ladies and gentlemen, a tip: lots of people have attempted to get better service by asking “Don’t you know who I am?” when they were known to be criminals. So long as there’s no proof, it’s not all that bad. Being witnessed in the presence of a supervillain, making a deal with him, and working with him changes the nature of that question. They were in hiding for a reason.

They also had their own lawyers and the benefit of a legal system that takes awhile to get working, so it’s not really urgent that Nurple is released. It just fits into my plan better. If anything, getting broken out by me would just make him look worse.

I was on the other side of the part, as I said, with some gun I’d burglarized from a house while no one was home.

Moai came bouncing around the corner from where he parked the Minstrel and through the doors. From past experience, I knew he had a tendency to crash through a lot of things. Doors. Desks. People. Metal bars in a holding cell. It felt like it took forever. 16.37 minutes, according to my helmet. When Moai emerged, it was bouncing behind the confused-looking Yurple Nurple. He ran for it, across the street, egged on by Moai toward where a car was supposed to be.

I’d told the Yurples that the Reds had a car for them. The Reds thought the Greens provided a car. The Greens figured the Yurples had a car for their own guy. You’ll be much closer to enlightenment when you realize that the car is like a spoon. There is no spoon. There was no car. There was, to all the world, a uniformed police officer who pulled a gun and shot the fleeing criminal dead. He disappeared, and I made my public appearance in full armor then, running to the side of the criminal that had been shot by a cop they’ll never find.

Moai adjusted his course to head for the corner now that his part was finished. He just had to get to the Minstrel cycle and escape.

My part then was to look distraught for the cameras as I cradled the body of Nurple, shouting “Whyyyy?!” up into the air all dramatically.

“Whyyy?! Oh, you took him too soon, Lord!” I yelled as I held him in my arms. Speaking of dramatic stuff, I love doing things all hammy. “This, this death scene…it’s so tragic!” Hammy is good. “Who’ll take care of the children now?! Think of the children!” When I’m having a good time, I might as well show it. “You animals, why must everything I love be shot by police?”

It was around that time that Nurple spoke. It was soft owing to the massive physical trauma. “Help me…get…to…hospital.”

More than a half dozen officers had run outside by this time with their weapons drawn. I grabbed Nurple and lifted him up princess-style in my arms. “I’m going to kill you for shooting this man. You hear me? Each and every one of you has signed your own death warrants!” I called out to them.

Suddenly, Apollo sped onto the scene on a motorcycle. He braked, did a front wheelie, and came to a stop, then held out his hands toward the cops, “Don’t, I’ll handle it!”

I hoped the police would fire on me. They did fire on me. After they were all clicking empty, I glanced down at the man in my arms. Yep, definitely dead now. I tossed him aside. “Well, going to have to give you a rain check on the death warrants. I don’t have my dancing shoes with me and without those I just can’t serve y’all.”

I disappeared and got out of there, leaving the Yurple leader clearly shot dead by cops and Apollo clearly unsatisfied at not having even a chance to bring me in.

Earlier today, the Yurples worked out who their new leader is going to be. I backed a fellow who looked just bright enough to realize he needed to do what I said or he’d wind up dead. It was easy. Sure, they had some infighting over who got to be the boss now, but then I showed up and shook my guy’s hand. Not much reason to differentiate. Same scruffy face, same pasty skin. Only difference is, this one has a fauxhawk and an earring on one ear. I think I’ll call him…Rain. Yurple Rain.

“So happy to see the gang is all united behind you. In the interest of keeping our working relationship smooth, I was all set to eliminate any threats to the unity of the Yurples that might have arisen in these tumultuous times!”

As the other potential leaders got the hint, Rain shook my hand back and responded accordingly, “Yes, you did a great deal for our gang. Even if our old boss’s wish to be freed wasn’t carried out to anyone’s satisfaction, we can all agree that you’ve shown your goodwill to us. It’s only right that we show true goodwill and hospitality to you.”

Just think, some guys earn people’s loyalty with special missions that help them instead. The gang’s got some pep in their step. Big Red and Mean Green have been a little cold toward me, though. I should be able to hit Lady Liberty next week unless they pull something. Maybe point out that they tried to tell me that Yurple guy had a lawyer and wouldn’t need to escape. Maybe realize they’d been lied to about the car.

Good thing I have people thinking that somebody in this bunch ratted them out with all that talk of a traitor. If either of the bosses speaks out against me and we’ll suddenly find they’re our traitor.

Now have a good night you crazy drunken bastards out there reading this.

Next

Previous

Get Wrecked 8

Mwahaha. Hahahahahahaha! Ahahahahahahahahaha! Cue lightning strike there.

You don’t know how hard it is for me to resist putting a pinky to my mouth when I do that. Luckily, I don’t have that problem when I pull off a real, mad scientist-grade evil laugh. You know, one of those where you just can’t stop laughing at all the destructive power in your hands. For me, it usually involves something where committing a war crime is as easy as pulling a trigger.

Seems like I’ve lost my wonderful laugh lately. So hard to just enjoy the little things, like going for a stroll, flashing back to a time you were ambushed by infantry trying to stop you destroying their world, then coming back to your senses in the middle of somebody’s house with lots of blood and few solid body parts laying around.

Maybe that’s just me, though.

One final coffin nail. One more. No more need to wallow in worry and paranoia over plans not coming together all because I have to have one to take down these heroes. It’s a joke. Heroes aren’t going to do on their own what they can’t do as a team. More on that later, actually.

The update from Dame had some interesting things.

“Paveman was let go as part of financial haggling. The accountants trying to clean up the team of those who seem less effective in battle to mitigate agreements made before the change in corporate leadership. He is bitter, but not disgruntled. His son is visiting him to cheer him up. He tends toward alcoholism and wallowing in memories. Enjoys cheap beer and the movie Red Dawn. Is planning on looking into a gang meet to discuss the hostilities and presence of possible third party interference.

Computer reveals leftover details about you. They aren’t sure what’s wrong with you, but suspect a combination of mental disorders, save for Venus. She suspects your actions are unconventional, but deliberate. They leave enemies unable to react and make you appear more intimidating. Sanely choosing actions to make less imaginative minds think you’re crazy. Lone Gunman supports analysis, is in favor of extreme measures to end the threat. Lone Gunman disciplined by Forcelight.”

Sounds nice. I hope she used something more forceful than a boarding school paddle. Damn, if they put that on video, that’d take care of their funding permanently. Not that I’d buy it, of course.

It was nice knowledge to have, especially in light to a little meet and greet I’d arranged. My armor may not be the fanciest or most powerful out there. Doesn’t give me the most incredible of super strength, just enough to get by. It’s bullet proof, except against big enough guns with armor piercing bullets. There are special sheathes of energy it can create around the gloves, but they have to charge up and are useful for hand to hand only. It provides life support, but I can’t patch it up without easily expended nanites. I can leap tall buildings in a single bound…provided I like the sound of breaking bones in the morning. Which I do, though I prefer if they weren’t my own. The computer helps me a great deal, but when can I pay attention to it in the heat of battle? What it has that other power armor, doesn’t, though? My brain interfacing with it and the numerous small cameras and projectors placed around it to create realistic holograms, some of which disguise me or render me invisible.

As you may have noticed by now, I love to put that to use more than any other aspect of it. In this case, I went to each gang disguised as a member of that gang to report on a new development: the guy who tore the bosses’ houses apart wanted to speak about terms of peace in the city before he had to kill too many more people.

It was raining lightly when Moai and I showed up for the meeting. I know, I know, with my sunny disposition you imagine it’s been nothing but clear skies and sunshine, but that’s just not the way the world works. I appeared to be nothing more than a man in a black suit with sunglasses on. Moai himself was dressed in a large coat and fedora. He was too big to pass as a normal human, but I just wanted his face and body concealed enough. I hid a speaker and receiver around his neck too.

See, it’s entirely possible that these guys will be a little upset at me killing their friends, and those old Space Marine weapons have been known to shoot holes in my body. I’d much rather have Moai there if people go from gun shy to trigger happy. I really need to build me some more of those holodisks. This constant back and forth hasn’t been good for my stockpiles of gadgetry.

As soon as I was done, I stepped around behind Moai and vanished into thin air. I took up a position on a nearby rooftop.

They all showed up. The Greens were punctual, at least, arriving in some Tesla car. I expected it to be full of smoke when it showed, but that wasn’t the case. Instead, the Green guy, whose name I never bothered learning, stepped out. You know, he’s black and that makes it work a little better, but I’ve been wondering lately what is up with these eco-types and dreadlocks? Is it better for the planet to not wash their hair so much, and if so, why not just cut it really short or try baldness?

He had four guys with him. One stayed in the car while the others approached with him. The two in the rear had shotguns. The one alongside him had a pistol’s bulge at the bottom of his shirt.

The Yurples showed then. I didn’t recognize the make of the car. If I’d heard of it, they wouldn’t have thought it was cool enough to drive in. Same kind of set up. One guy stood guard at the car with a handgun and a chainsword. The rest formed an entourage around the white guy with the facial scruff and a business suit. A suit. Huh.

The Reds drove up rather noisily in a hummer that was loud enough without the vibrating bass. The jovial attitude of the Reds ended when they shut off the vehicle and stepped out. This guy was black too, but with the bald head and thick beard of a true revolutionary. Big fellow as well. Unlike the Soviet Union, this guy’s not running out of food.

Reminds me of a real joke I heard they used to have. “How do you know that Adam and Eve were USSR citizens?”

Answer: “They had no clothes, one apple to eat between them, and were told they lived in paradise.”

By the way, if anyone wants to suggest a better term than black in the comments, go ahead. I’m aware of the term African American, but I find it odd in application towards people who have lived here for just as long or longer than the white people. Remember, don’t hate someone for their skin tone. Hate them because, whether black, white, red, brown, yellow, orange, indigo, or periwinkle, people are often assholes.

The head of the Reds had brought two more guys with him, but two stuck with the getaway vehicle this time.

All in all, much more manageable of a group than I anticipated. I was certain they’d bring a lot more. I guess I just don’t know a whole lot about things at that particular level of criminality.

They were all gathered together, clearly distrusting of one another, but they wanted some answers.

So they approached.

“Uh uh!” I said through Moai’s speaker. “Just the head honchos get to honch on over here. Step right up, boys and girls. Or pretty much just guys. Demographically challenged, are we?”

“Who the fuck are you supposed to be?” queried Big Red.

“I’m the guy whose been kicking your asses for a little while now using the power of paranoia and interpretive dance. I’ve been taking it easy, actually. But every casualty of your little war, every dollar lost, each one of your homes blown up…that’s all me.”

“What do you want calling us here like this?” asked the Yurple guy.

“Out of the goodness of my heart, I’m here to give peace a chance. See, I have a scheme coming up that needs some manpower, and y’all have manpower. Working together, we can do even more amazing things in my name than ever before!”

Green spoke up this time, “Uh huh. What’s in it for us, player?”

“A metric assload of money, and a little recognition for helping pull something that makes a real mark. Something that lets people across the nation know you’re no one to fuck with! Also, I’ll stop killing you. Refuse, and I’ll keep killing and find another way. Peace sells, gentlemen. Who’s buying?”

They all chose peace, at least in this matter. Full control of the gangs? No. Working together on a joint project for a respite and money? Yes. Good enough, and it got even better when we had an unexpected visitor show up.

Paveman made his grand appearance by overturning the Greens’ car. The leaders all got out of his way as he shifted to come right at Moai. “This ends tonight!” he yelled. He tore off the coat and hat to reveal…Moai! See, that’s the problem of this being from my perspective. You miss out on some of the surprises.

Moai hopped up and slammed his head down on Paveman’s, knocking him to the ground. Paveman went to one knee, then rose up from it to uppercut Moai. The two exchanged blows until a different sort of precipitation made its way through the air. There’s been a lot of miniguns around lately, but the one mounted on the Humvee and kept hidden below the sun roof was one of the more welcome ones. It knocked Paveman down. When he tried to stand up, a Green bodyguard kneecapped him with a bolt gun and put him down again.

I dropped down and approached the scene as the leaders all wondered what to do about him.

“Gimme some room. I’ll handle him,” I said as I appeared and pushed my way through the group. They gawked. “Might want to have someone see to the guy in the car, and maybe arrange alternate transportation?” I really just wanted a moment alone.

They recognized the voice and gawked a little, then put some distance between themselves, myself, Moai, and Paveman.

“Ouchies. Probably something you can heal by now, but that’s gotta hurt.”

“You.”

“The one and only. The man who keeps on beating that hero ass.”

“What’s gang warfare to you?”

“Just another tool. Just people dying for a cause they know nothing about.”

“You’re a monster. No. You’re a dick.”

“Nice assessment. I’m also unstoppable, and you know why?”

He didn’t say anything. Not the first time a villain just wanted to get something off his chest. Most people have friends with phones or Facebook. We hold people at our mercy. Generally, it works out better to let us talk. It also saves on therapist costs, to hear some guys tell it.

“So, this one night I’m out walking around, years back. I approached a bridge and saw on it a couple: a young man and a young woman. They talked, then held hands, and then went to jump, together, hand in hand. Except the young fellow faked it and let go, letting the female go splatty-thuddy over the road. She died before I even got close. You see, a lot of good people are that little girl. Play by the rules, hold to promises, even when the rules and promises are horrible. Sometimes sticking with the way things are means insuring your own destruction.”

I saw Paveman sitting up and motion to Moai, who pinned him by his hand. “But those of us who aren’t so nice will lie and get away with whatever we want. Like with the girl and boy again. Even if a cop or you yourself had been there, the most you’d have done was arrest the guy. Because the good is ever too fettered by what is right to do what is necessary to defeat those not constrained by the social contract.”

I patted Paveman on the head, unsure if anyone ever got my parables anyway, then began to charge up that glove. “You know, I found that guy and I dropped him out a plane. Don’t worry, I threw him a parachute too. Well, actually, it was a pack for a parachute filled with a bunch of loose feathers.”

I raised the charged glove up, prepared to strike. Even a stone man is a lot less of a problem if he’s just a head. “Goodbye Paveman.”

Before I could take Paveman’s head off, a crash came from behind me. It was Apollo, the marble-statue-looking hero that worked with Venus. He had tilted the Yurples’ unknown car on its side, then jumped on the Humvee and tore the gun off.

He made his way toward Paveman and myself, partially shielding himself with the door he tore off the Humvee. I gave Moai the signal for “let’s get out of here” and cut to stealth. Trap? I didn’t know. But where one member of Shieldwall is, there is a disturbing tendency for more to arrive. It wasn’t a standoff, though. My point was made, even if Paveman survived. The gangs got clear, but had to walk, while Apollo was stuck tending to his father. Yep. Chip off the old block.

Ok, so I wanted to kill them, but these gangbangers were more concerned with injuries and rides. A lot less cowering in fear involved in that than I hoped for. Still, that act of disloyalty telegraphs that they’re most likely going to turn on me later. It’s the guns and the environment. Too many supers around, combined with having guns that can turn people into lifeless fruit salad gelatin.

But for now…more evil laughter. Bwahahahahaha!

Next

Previous

Get Wrecked 7

Free at last, free at last. When it comes to having a ghost lady hanging on to me, I am free at last. I got the phase device thingy working right. A little bit of guesswork, some experience with slightly similar devices, a little bit of putting it back together the way it was, and a little bit of becoming one with it all paid off.

The first thing my unwelcome guest did was help herself to the food. Enough of her was removed from reality to keep her from being immediately harmed by lack of water or food, but that doesn’t mean she wasn’t incredible hungry when she got back.

Technically, that shouldn’t have worked either unless she came to my place on an empty stomach. Maybe she did. Ignoring extraneous details like that comes in useful. When a cell phone turns into a robot or aliens that look like utahraptors invade, it doesn’t do to stand around all day going “Gee, I wonder how this happened.”

Nope, much better to find an intestine and start tearing. Just try to avoid using your own unless you’re good with choking or whipping someone. Also, kinda difficult to shove those back in. Bring a staple gun.

So here was this art thief, pickpocket, and minor pain in my ass sitting on my couch, tucking in to my bowl of cereal and half gallon of pineapple-orange-banana juice.

I just sat down on the floor and turned up the TV. Damn, looks like the U.S. avoided an economic catastrophe and the shutdown’s ended. Well that’s just great. I never did get to raid the Smithsonian in D.C. I was really looking forward to owning a T-Rex skull.

Oh, and the Yurples carved up some members of the Reds and Greens, cutting off chunks of skin in the shape of those protective casings you see around phones. No clue why they want them, to be honest. They’re not even knifeproof, obviously.

“In response, there’s been evidence that the Greens have broken out their stockpiles of space marine weaponry. This footage, shot earlier today, shows the devastating violence they’ve already unleashed,” said an overly-dramatic news anchor. His hair may be perfect, but his vision stunk. It was just an electric car full of militant hippies unloaded on a coffee shop with full-auto handguns with exploding bullets. Geez, don’t bother calling my attention to it until they take out the buildings behind it t- well helloooooooooo nurse!

I watched as they showed the replay. A Green with a surprising amount of muscle mass stepped out at the end of the barrage while holding a large rectangular weapon on his shoulder. It had two openings, not so much barrels as holes in the rectangle. The Green fired just the top. The weapon flew back as a glowing projectile flew through the air. And the coffee shop. And the book store next door. And the corner restaurant after that. There was a loud crack and then a roar.

The next scene, the lightly injured members of the Greens rolled their car back onto the wheels. The one who fired the weapon was left behind, but they did try to retrieve the thing. The hyper-advanced blowy uppey thingy, I’m calling it at this point. They got it, but they had to pull the gunner’s arms off it. The palms were melted to it, and the recoil threw the weapon back so far it ripped entire limbs off.

Looks like some strong weapons survived the parody paradox, or parodyox as I like to call it.

“A horrible scene. I wish we warned you beforehand about having kids in the room. Truly a scene of bowel-loosening terror. One good thing to come of it is that Shieldwall has established a presence in that corner of the city, or at least a former member of Shieldwall.

Paveman, the Concrete Crusader, isn’t letting a little thing like downsizing take him out of action. With their primary antagonist, Psycho Gecko, in hiding after his sonic attack on Kingscrow, Shieldwall has been busy fighting a collection of animal-themed villains in Canada. Paveman, though, has been sighted here in Empyreal City with ever increasing frequency.”

And then we come to another clip. This time it shows drunk Reds beating down someone while yelling that he owes them money. Suddenly, a manhole cover is thrown high into the air and Paveman leaps up, pulling the sidewalk into himself to grow too large to fit back in the hole. Not that he tried to, anyway. He landed with his feet on either side and gave the Reds a wallopin’. Near as I can tell, walloping originates from someone trying to come up with a term to describe smacking someone across the face repeatedly with a wallaby.

This may be a lie, however, or it may be true only in different dimensions. Can you really take that risk?

The anchor broke in right when Paveman sent a Red flying into a car that happened to be driving by, causing it to hit a car going the other direction and stop suddenly, with a car then plowing into the first car from behind, “Needless to say, while the city dislikes the collateral damage done to infrastructure, that’s a minor issue compared to hooligans blowing everything up.

Let’s go over to Francis with the weather for this weekend. Francis?”

But enough about weather.

I’ll give the Greens points for viciousness. Not sure if they’re going to survive the final cut, though. I won’t need three gangs under me. Barely got room under me with this magnificently large pair of balls bouncing around down there.

I shut off the TV and turned to my guest. “Hey there hungry sleepy woman. What about you? You got any news? Juicy tidbits? Stay away from the gossip section, but give me things to know.”

“M’ name’s Dame,” she answered, her words distorted as she shoved a spoon into her mouth.

“Hello Dame. Anything useful? Hey, here’s something. Stop trying to take my stuff! You got that?”

Dame nodded as she chewed on frosted flakes of corn.

“No argument? Well, that’s good I suppose. By the way, saw you at that party. Don’t know why you were snatching wallets from people when you can sneak around through security and take fancy things.”

“Sh ish mf,” she started to answer before stopping to get more of her food down, “It is because of you. The upper crust likes to wear their fancy jewels for occasions like that. I was there to shop and didn’t want anybody thinking they had a thief in their midst, even if it was just you.”

“Just me?”

She stammered out a response, “A mad killer who sometimes steals things. That’s what I meant.”

“Ah, ok. So, I’m mad am I?”

“Um…maybe?”

“You think I have anger issues?”

“That’s not what I meant, but yes.”

“Why?”

“Because you shoved a frozen swan up someone’s ass and hit him so hard with the head that it burst.”

“Perhaps that was coldly calculated to throw my enemies off balance?”

“You shoved your hand up his butt.”

“All part of my diabolical plan, I assure you.”

“What plan was that?”

“Killing that man after shoving my hand up his butt, of course. Try to keep up.”

Dame rolled her eyes. She then cleared her throat and stood up. “By the way, am I free to go?”

I smiled at her. “Oh yes. I just think there’s one thing you owe me first.”

A few minutes later I stood watching as her hands moved in circular motions, the water flowing over them and splashing against the round…bowl. She ate from my bowl, she’s at least going to wash the darn thing before she leaves. Manners, people!

“By the way,” I told her, “your phase thingy should work ok now. There’s just one thing I might ask you to do as payment. No dishes involved, I don’t think.”

Dame looked up from drying her hands, “Nothing violent. I don’t do violence.”

“I noticed. I just want you to spy on someone for me.”

She cocked her head to the side as she considered it, but I think it was obvious she owed me a little. “Ok, I’ll watch the guy for you.”

“And see if you can find anything I can use against him. Missed child support payments, an unhealthy love of women in Nazi uniforms, daddy issues, mommy issues, NAMBLA magazine issues. I want something I can use against him to apply psychological pressure.”

She nodded. “You got it,” she said as she looked around. “Wow, this place is a piece of shit. Do you have an email address I can send reports through to?”

I gave her the one that I use for receiving jobs and saw her off, through the door this time.

Then I turned to find Moai where he was propped up on the couch, having switched the channel to a horror movie.

“Alright, Moai, I think it’s time. Let’s get the plot moving along.”

He looked at me at that.

“The plot to mess with the Statue of Liberty, of course. What did you think I was talking about? This is the part where we put pressure on the gangs. Then I’ll twist their arms. After that, it’s smooth sailing. Just helicopters and lots of equipment after that. Now, you get the rocket launcher. I’ll get the car.”

The guys who run the gangs are known. Where they live, their jobs, their families, all that is common enough knowledge and all of it is irrelevant. The families are protected, the jobs are fronts, and their homes are so well guarded that any other gang is going to be hesitant in the extreme when it comes to attacking there.

So I blew those same homes up.

Moai handled the Yurples’ leader’s house with the Ikea rocket launcher. A couple of shots, badda bing badda boom, and the Macbook daddy is homeless. He was putting up the illusion of being at work when Moai wrecked the place.

I handled the Greens’ compound. It was all about showing that someone could live in a city without having a huge carbon footprint. It had a large garden with trees in the yard. I tore through on my car. A minigun chewed through trees. Lasers burned bushes and vines. I crashed through the front door and into the large living room of the place. Men jumped out of where they’d taken cover to shoot up my car, but the armoring held. I flipped a switch on the dash and a pair of car nuts underneath my “CTUL US16” plate extended out and fell off, bouncing and then rolling in different directions. I gunned it and drove straight through to the backyard as they detonated.

I watched the flames tear through the house and blow the windows out for a moment, wishing I had some marshmallows. Then I drove out, flipping a switch that caused an oil to squirt out of the tailpipe of my car and create a slick all over the yard.

As for the Reds, Moai and I both took out their place. We showed up, again and again, as simple delivery men. Somebody, the Greens or Yurples, was resorting to the old prank of ordering up lots of pizza. Well, the joke was on the enemy gangs. The Red guards loved pizza.

Maybe not so much when one large stack of pizza boxes that no one had ever unstacked opened up to start pumping a gaseous substance into the dwelling. The pizzas emitted a little bit of it as well, soon causing the guards to collapse with blooded mouths and reddened skin. After another twenty minutes like this, the section of the house immediately surrounding emitter collapsed, the wood having been eaten away.

I’ve made sure the leaders weren’t there at the time I attacked for a good reason though. They’re going to be the ones to submit to my brilliant scheme soon enough. For now, though, the Reds get to enjoy some conspicuous consumption.

Next

Previous

Get Wrecked 6

Things have gotten a bit hostile around Empyreal City. The Reds, Greens, and Yurples descended into open warfare. There was blood, guts, and ass everywhere. It’s been madness, I tell you. Madness!

Great TV, too. I have it on while working on this shiny doohickey. That’s a technical term, just like thingamajigger, thingamabob, gadget, gizmo, junk, and piece of shit.

“…It appears that the Greens gang firebombed the hotel to try and kill a prominent member of the Reds gang. Casualties were high as the Greens utilized Maryjane cocktails, their signature modification of a Molotov cocktail, leaving victims far too incapacitated to escape on their own. This is presumably payback for the Reds taking their sickles to the Green greenhouse on 9th and Madison that grows the really good shit…not that I know anything about it. Let’s go back to Ron in the studio, Ron?”

“If you’re joining us in the studio, we just got back from having some technical difficulties while Jim was discussing the premature harvest by the Reds at 9th and Madison. We lost all the rest of his feed after he mentioned that and absolutely nothing needing to be censored was spoken live over the air. Nothing at all. Over in the financial sector, it appears that China is making the case for downplaying the United States’ role in the global economy. Here’s Tina with the financial report.”

“Thanks Ron. Despite owning more than a trillion dollars in U.S. treasury bonds, China is not happy with American politicians. In an op-ed piece, China’s state news is calling for a ‘de-Americanized world’ in light of the Federal shutdown’s effect on the world economy…”

Huh. Guess that means nobody spotted a little extra violence that took place around here. Then again, that lady burglar is very good at not being spotted, so I piggybacked on her anonymity. She came back, you see. At the time, I was asleep on my couch front of the TV. Sprawled out, mouth open, drooling a little. Circuit boards, wires, and a tube intended to be used as a barrel on my lap. I was in my armor, though, so don’t let it be said I’m sleeping around without proper protection.

According to the playback from my helmet, she was just there hanging off the wall by my window. Totally unnecessary, of course, as this is the ground floor. If I’d bothered, I could have set up a warning system with motion detectors, an alarm, and instantly playing back what happened as I awoke.

I didn’t have that set up this time because I passed out while watching TV. She was quiet, though, as she pressed some doohickey on her forearm that had all the shiny stuff on it and phased through the window and wall. She had very fluid movements, like she didn’t so much move as flow to a spot. She was trying to steal my Cthulhu bird Picasso painting.

I let the first one go because I had bigger fish to gut like a pig, metaphorically and simile speaking. Doesn’t mean anyone just has a right to walk in and steal my stuff.

“But Psycho Gecko,” you may ask, “what about how you walk around stealing stuff?” Good question. Answer: It’s different when it’s me being stolen from. Duh. I’m morally opposed to being stolen from, but not to stealing from other people. It’s called a double standard, because it’s twice as awesome for me than it is for other people.

She was very smooth, my thieving houseguest, but she made a mistake. As quiet as she was, as inconspicuous, she made the mistake of getting too close. Sounds like a tagline from a movie about thieves, but in this instance it pertained to the suit detecting her proximity.

I don’t know what I was dreaming about, but suddenly there was a thief with a nice ass in it and me waking up suddenly. I sat up, turned around, and went after her with the welding torch I had by my hand from the work. She whipped around in a move that was half a matter of stepping away and half a way for her to get herself spinning for a kick.

That was a mistake on her part. My head was surrounded by metal. Her foot wasn’t. She had to catch herself as she landed, but then she bolted for the window.

“Come back, lady, Mr. Welder just wants a kiss!” I yelled as I ran after her. She cussed, but didn’t phase through the window. She stopped, saw me after her, then stepped on the sill and did a backflip, landing impressively on the other side of the sofa. She looked up to see what I was doing.

I was clapping for her, then burned the number eight into the wall. “Your lead up was awkward and you need to work on that, but I liked the recovery. You really stuck that landing. Spain is being a hardass on the judging, but I give you an eight.”

She ran out the door. You know, the Spanish judge was right, she was being a little punta.

I doused the welder, grabbed my air cannon, and followed after, laughing. I dunno why. I just felt like laughing. I can’t explain it, but sometimes you just want to laugh maniacally when you chase a pretty young woman through the bad part of town. Or in a small suburb with a dark secret. Or in the woods at a summer camp. Or even in rural Texas. It’s not really something you can explain. You just have to be there and feel it.

I followed her. She run swiftly down the hallway and ducked around the corner just before an air blast slammed into the wall, sending out a shower of drywall and cheap paint. She was heading toward the door. I kicked open the door to the room on my right, tossed the cannon into the arms of a scared man with a snub nose revolver, and charged up the energy sheaths around my fists.

“Don’t hurt us, please!” he called, fumbling with his gun and mine. He dropped both. I ran to the wall across the room and plunged first one fist, then another into it, discharging the stored energy into the wall and blowing out a lot larger portion of wood, drywall, and brick than most people are allowed to when they punched.

“Oh no,” said the man as I turned to him.

I grabbed the air cannon, shot the hole I made to clear more space, and dove out with the battle cry of “Oh yeah!”

I caught myself in a roll and got oriented outside. I checked on the building’s official entrance and found she wasn’t just standing around there. Instead, my houseguest was climbing up the exterior of the building. That’s one way to try and trick me, I suppose.

I took some potshots at her, but missed. She climbed faster. I began to stick things in the barrel and fire so as to vary my shots up a little. The brick shattered against the wall just over her head, but the empty beer bottle smacked her in the back. Lucky bottle.

I hit the stealth and the jump boosters.

It takes most people more than a few seconds to reach the top of a building if they’re climbing or perhaps jumping. She isn’t most people. Neither am I. When she climbed over the edge and found herself hauled to her feet and hung out over the edge, she was understandably surprised. Probably figured I was most people in that regard.

I had her by the neck in my left hand, air gun in my right. The barbed wires used to project the energy sheath caught in the tight black material around her neck and raked over her skin. She hung on for dear life.

“Come on, lady, why you gotta be such a dick? It’s my painting. I’m keeping it,” I said, shaking my head.

She responded haltingly due to her predicament, “Don’t want you…destroying it. Like others. Monster.”

“That which has a fleeting existence is all the more valuable than stored, preserved, guarded collection. Or that’s my take on it. Just leave it be. You don’t see me interfering in your thefts, do you?”

“You did. Doing research at…party. Want to see…magic trick?” She angled the diamond and mirror bracelet on her left forearm toward me. I don’t know if she caught a beam of light or it just generates one, but either way it flashed me. It flashed me like a flashbang, or perhaps like Margaret Thatcher, because I was blinded for a moment. Unable to see properly, I brought the cannon up and smacked at her forearm. Something crunched and then she screamed. It felt like a big ass bug bit my hand. First there was a kind of shock, then it felt like it was swelling up and inflamed. There were points of what I could only describe as numbness digging into me too. I didn’t feel the woman’s weight anymore.

I put my hand down and tried to clear away the spots in my vision. The effect on my hand spread away from there and to my armor. There was less of an inflammation feeling there, but it felt plenty freaky.

I had to reboot my eyes and the helmet’s visual sensors. When they came back online, I was surprised to find the woman was both hanging on to me and translucent. Well, it is October. Before I could figure out who I was going to call, I realized what had happened. I broke her phasey thingy.

“You ok?” I asked.

She nodded. I tried to shake her off. “Then get off!”

She grabbed hold of my neck and the shocking sensations dug in. They got far enough that it felt like my throat was going to close up on me from the afore-mentioned inflammation sensation. For the sake of saying this, I think the nation needs more information on the inflammation sensation. It spread to my right hand, along with the inflamed feeling, when I tried to grab her hand and pull myself free. We struggled like that, with me failing to pry her off and her holding onto me desperately.

It ended with me on the rooftop, choking, her hand halfway through my throat. “You can stay holding, just not to my neck!” I yelled. She seemed to understand because she retreated to holding my hand and arm. When I was more myself and less threatened with death, I looked at her and asked, “Ok, so I broke your toy. Why are you sticking with me?”

She shrugged. It occurred to me that if she’s not all physically there, then even hearing me was an accomplishment. Probably couldn’t speak. Phasing, or becoming partially removed from the physical world, is odd like that. Like most superpowers, if you think too much about it, it doesn’t make sense. I just figure there’s some other aspect to it that helps to keep people somewhat grounded. I guess the ones whose powers don’t work out just don’t live long enough, like if a person somehow phased right through the earth with no conservation of momentum. They’d fly right through the planet-…I looked down and noticed the way the thief was drifting through the roof. She bounced off a few boundaries.

“You’re being dragged away but for me, yes or no?”

She nodded.

“The only thing providing a barrier is shocking you, right?”

Nod.

I sighed. “Damn it. Alright, let’s get off this roof in front of everybody and I’ll give you my take on things.”

I dropped off the side of the building and found the broken and shattered armband on the walkway below. I brought it in with me and explained as I walked back to my room with a ghostly woman on my arm. “Typically, energy still has an effect on you when you’re like that. Physical attacks, even wind, can exert some pressure on you because of the kinetic energy. Electricity is a more pure form of it and is more solid to you. Also more harmful. Damn, I think I left the cannon on the roof. Most people, you’d be a minor shock to the system. You could pass through them fairly easily with only an inconvenience except for the brain and spine. You’d fuck them up and they might be solid enough to bounce you around. Except I’m in power armor. I’ve got electricity all up in this thing right now.”

She squinted and reached for my neck again as we stepped through the door to my apartment. I brushed her hand away and shut the door. “Uh, uh, uh. I’m not human. I kinda merge with computers and electronics physically, and I have some cybernetics in me. You could probably hold onto me without the suit, but it’d be bad touch. And if there’s one thing I don’t stand for, it’s bad touch, missy!”

I wagged my finger at her. She looked bemused. I think. Then I shook the hand that held hers and formally introduced myself, which is normally an event that causes equal parts shock and pants-wetting in people who don’t already know, “By the way, I’m Psycho Gecko. I expect I’ll have to wait on your name.”

Moai opened the door to the bathroom then. A towel was wrapped around his lower body and a giant shower cap was stretched over his large stone head.

“Oh, so that’s where you’ve been. I had to chase a thief and accidentally unphase her so she needs to hold onto me or risk falling off the planet, and you’ve just been in the shower all this time! What were you even doing in there for so long?”

Moai didn’t say anything, just bounced across the apartment to the bedroom to get dressed. As he passed by, a copy of Masonry Magazine fell to the floor. He paused for a moment, then kept on bouncing.

What a stone cold perv, man.

So, yeah, I’m still here, working on fixing this doohickey. Until then, I can’t keep the lady off me. Don’t even know her name. We agreed on no showers, and I think she wants this finished today, based on how she apparently didn’t sleep a wink when I went to bed.

I can’t tell if that was because she was worried I’d try something, or because she was worried she’d fall asleep and then off the planet.

At least I can put that in a dating profile if I ever try internet dating. “Pros: Women would rather sleep with me than risk being flung into outer space at high velocity never to be heard from again.”

 

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Previous

Get Wrecked 5

I’ve been looking up leads on my little art thief. No luck as of yet. She appears to be one of those who keeps their powers quiet. People do that from time to time. Some just don’t use them. Never acknowledge them. They deny an essential and special part of themselves. It’s a shame. Others, like this lady, use them but not in a way intended to get them in fights or on the news.

Nope, no clue about her, but you know how that is. Sometimes you just meet someone, violate a man’s ass, have a Picasso stolen from you, and never see that person again. That’s life, am I right?

Let’s see…in other news, Shieldwall’s certainly still around. The news was talking about how they were trimming the fat off to help them keep up the good fight in light of their lack of budget. According to one news network, “What good fight? Psycho Gecko, a few minor criminals, and a premature robotic cell phone invasion?”

Yeah! How dare they try to stop a minor threat like me, the person who launched a chemical attack on a major American city!

Let’s see…what else has been going on? I’ve put in some work on the death ray. It’s boring, but necessary. I don’t expect it to be done before next month, but it’s a big part of a plan I’ve got in mind as far as really socking it to the Shieldwall heroes. I still need some people to do my bidding. Hiring someone to fly over a city and drop a weird device is one thing, but things get complicated when you have a large green bosom involved. There’s been some stuff around as far as gangs. I guess those guys I messed up lost a turfwar or something. I’ll admit, I don’t know how they do things at that level around here.

Being pulled in a bunch of different directions at once means less time for each individual item unless you find a way to combine them. My idea to save on time is simple: scare the crap out of the gangs, cow them into submission, and get them to work for me for at least a little while.

Michelangelo did know enough about the local gangs due to his Mafia connections. There were the Reds, the Greens, and the Yurples. I thought the color thing was over with. And involved gangs from two different coastlines. Ah well, I can’t be expected to keep up with all the newsletters and chainmails they send out. Or maybe that’s chain letters.

People running around in chainmail would spruce a city up nicely, I think. Just think. Instead of worrying about people having guns, you could figure out who was armed due to the swords they carry with them. Hey, it’d be good for the churches too! They could go back to trying to burn witches. I can see major cross-promotional opportunities with any Wiccan church having a 5k run.

So, first steps were easy. Throw down a gauntlet and start a gang war.

First was the territory of the Reds. Street gang with a neo-communist theme. Hammers, sickles, Lenin’s face on graffiti. Down with the bourgeoisie, dawg. They redistribute the wealth they get a hold of to their home neighborhoods. You’re fine walking through as long as you aren’t rich, otherwise that mink coats going to a mother of six that can’t afford to pay the heating bill. Nobody’s rich in their neighborhoods, but they’re at least better off than they were.

They’d gotten into it a lot with the Greens, so when I rolled up in a Red neighborhood, I left behind several pot leaf tags and used joints. I was in my car, so anyone who saw me will know it wasn’t actually them. The Greens always do drive-bys in eco-friendly cars. They just have to pack into them like clowns because they’re so much more expensive.

After some calls, I’d found where the Reds were going to hold their cock fights that night. I opened the door to my car, bit the head off a chicken grenade, and let it cross the road. I was turning the corner to the other side of the building when it went off. When the Reds ran out the other side holding cages of roosters, I let them have it with the air cannon and my latest fully-upgraded potato peeler. I also poured some gasoline onto the wire cages of the angry cocks and ignited them with a joint.

It fits the Greens MO. Just like PETA, most of the animals they rescue are put to death in less than a day. Unlike PETA, the Greens don’t have the benefit of a nice cozy van to use to pump kittens full of poison.

Don’t believe me? Well, they could be different on your world. I guess it’d behoove you to look it up. Get it? PETA? Behoove? Let me know if you’ve herd that one before. Ha!

Purposefully bad jokes aside, my next stop was Green territory. A militant eco friendly vegan and vegetarian gang. As previously stated, the pot leaf is their symbol. They grow and sell pot, opium, and even the coca leaf. Yes, the coca leaf, from which cocaine is derived. It also provided the name of Coca-Cola because cocaine was one of the original ingredients.

I flew Yurple colors with this one. A plaid tag pattern of yellow and purple. I dropped an empty pack of American Spirit cigarettes. My disguise was an obnoxious plaid yellow and purple jacket and tight women’s jeans. I made my way to a “community garden” in the middle of an apartment complex. A Green standing guard was easily dispatched as I beat him over the head with a two liter of Fanta Zero, then shoved it in his mouth, watching as he died from acute diet drink poisoning. I wasn’t entirely cruel, though. I topped it off with bleach to try and improve on the taste.

I ran inside, ignoring the burning UV lamps and smell of shit from the recycled waste they used as fertilizer. Just because there’s kernels doesn’t mean they grow corn, people. I snatched and started shoving as much Malawi Gold and Shaman into a sack as I could. Not for me. I’m just holding it for a friend of mine, officer. Nah, I’ll probably sell it.

I grabbed as much as I could carry and took it back to the car. I dropped it in the trunk and pulled out some large jugs of Mao Ze Lawn, China’s most powerful industrial-strength weedkiller. Chinese can’t make toys and toothpaste without making them deadly to humans. This weedkiller must be some strong stuff. I hooked it up as a special supplement to their sprinkler system and set it to go. Made sure to get a scrap of my yurple jacket caught in the workings of the thing. Then again, we are talking about a bunch of stoners here. I tore off half the thing and left it there for the Greens to find.

Next stop, Yurple territory. They adopted those colors because nobody likes them. Or flannel jackets. They smoke American Spirit because it’s all natural and has an Indian on it. They hate Reds because they thought Communism was cool before that gang started, and now that the Reds exist, they ruined it. They get into disagreements with the Greens because the Greens aren’t as cynical. They think the planet can actually be saved. Also, the Greens charge them out the ass for weed.

They steal electronics. Don’t leave an iPhone or a laptop laying around. Things fall off the back of trucks all the time around their neighborhoods.

I hit them as the Reds, the only gang left to impersonate. The Soviet flag flew high on the walls of the retro arcade before I broke in the back door and threw my half-full bottle of vodka at the man moving a dolly of Macbooks. He ducked and pulled out a switchblade. I took him down with a carefully-placed blow from the air cannon. Shooting someone is a perfectly legitimate tactic in martial arts. Just ask the Navy Seals. They have my back on this.

The worker went out like a light upon hitting the ground. I set the Macbooks aside and ran into him with the dolly a few times, going, “Wake up, wake up, wake up!” before he woke up. Then I swung it over hand at his head while saying, “Go to sleep!”

Just like with the Greens, I picked up a few things to make a profit off. Macbooks, iPhones, iPads. For people who hate the mainstream, they sure do suck the cock of a huge corporation that is trying to be hip and popular. The only problem was, how to dispose of all this stuff? How to wreck it? The answer came to me upon glancing around outside for inspiration.

A McDonald’s was nearby. Yep. Probably has some Yurples working there too. Not that they’re working for the man, they just need a day job. Right.

The fry cook was very accommodating in my request at knifepoint as he carried over some nice, hot, used fry grease and helped me toss it all over the place. We got it everywhere. Creases. Corners. Crannies. Nooks, though I didn’t plan to single out any tablets in all this.

Then it was just a matter of sitting back, relaxing, assembling a heating channel and focus array, and watching as they all mobilized against one another. People hitting each other on both sides, mistrust, fears of secret alliances. It’s very easy to let people who are so distrustful tear each other apart.

I knew my job was going very well when I heard about some Yurples being found execution style with a deck of playing cards nearby. One of the Yurples had “Cheater” carved into his forehead.

Reds really, REALLY don’t like it when somebody tries to cheat in their card rooms.

Then, today, the news is out that the Greens released some abused dogs from a shelter into a Yurple bar and barred the doors and windows. Bad news is, whether they survived or not, those dogs are getting put down. I’m serious. They’re getting put down worse than, “Yo momma’s so ugly, the Department of Corrections uses her in a scared straight program focusing only on women’s prisons that has nothing to do with troubled juvenile delinquents.”

So we have gangs killing each other, a little extra profit from stolen consumer electronics and weed, and most of the optics have been polished on this giant gun thingy of doom. Doooooom!

Next step on this little adventure is going to involve kicking their asses around some more, too. I need to rapidly escalate things, make sure they all come to meet about peace, and then I can drop in and make my offer.

This is all going so well, I just have to wonder when Shieldwall’s going to magically know a guy who knows a guy who brings them in to interrupt my plan and force me to do something else. I need to start building some guided rockets as a plan be for whenever that inevitably happens.

In the meantime, readers, this is the end of today’s update. Your inspirational quote of the day comes from Benjamin Franklin’s letter Advice to a Friend on Choosing a Mistress: “So that covering all above with a basket, and regarding only what is below the girdle, it is impossible of two women to know an old from a young one. And as in the dark all cats are grey, the pleasure of corporal enjoyment with an old woman is at least equal, and frequently superior, every knack being by practice capable of improvement.”

Truly inspiring. What a great statesman.

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Previous

Get Wrecked 4

For all that people seem to enjoy me from a distance, I just don’t work well with people. I get on their nerves, even when I don’t mean to. It’s going to make it hard for me to find some people to help me on this. I just don’t know where to recruit from and the people hanging around Rothstein’s do not want to hire out to me for some reason. Somebody mentioned a service that might match up a few temps, but the guy who answered said something about “trying to cut back on employee losses by reducing services to high-risk villains.” Case in point about me not working well with others? I went and picked up an Ikea rocket launcher for Moai to put together and blow up those guys’ headquarters whenever I find it.

Another case in point, apparently I upset a small gang nearby when I jazzed all over that guy’s car. He paid me a visit.

“Sup asshole.” I was leaving the Shithole Inn, or whatever I’m calling it today, when he spoke up. There he was with three other guys. They left behind the wall they’d been leaning on and walked toward me. The formed a line. A united front. I was in my civvies at the time, with Moai back in the room trying to assemble the Ikea rocket launcher.

“Wazzupizzle in the hizzle fo shizzle my nizzle?” I answered and held out my closed hand for a fist bump or something. He just looked at me like I had a mustache of nose hair.

“Whatever, man. You wanna guess how much it cost to clean my ride?”

“Jizzle, fo rizzle? Can’t say I know what it’s like to have to clean jizz off my car. Maybe you should have gotten a loan from a sperm bank.”

The one on the right end of the line cracked a smile and raised his hand up to cover his mouth.

“You got jokes, huh? Yeah. I got my boys with me. We’re here to collect on your ass. Whatchu think of that?”

“This skinny piece of shit here counts as one whole person? You sure? And I don’t know how to tell you this, but the one on the side of you there already looks like he got beat up by the barber. Meh, I could take them.”

The guy to jazzman’s left threw a punch at my jaw. I took it, latched on, gave him a bad case of fight bite. I stopped myself from swallowing the teeth that were knocked out. The first guy held his hand while the skinny asshole to the right tried to do this big spinning jump kick. It would have been really impressive, but I nailed him in the balls with an uppercut. The guy on the end who had to keep from laughing tried to get around behind me while Mr. Jazzy and the first guy tried me at the same time. I spat blood and teeth into jazz’s face and rammed my foot between the bitten man’s legs. I kicked off from there and turned, trying to find out where the laughing man went in the span of a short time in the air. He was close enough that I got him in a front facelock while in the air. As I fell, his face came with me. I landed on my back, but he hit the parking lot asphalt with his face, which was momentarily supporting a lot of weight. So was his neck, actually.

When I stood, I found that the group was trying to make a break for it, at least as much as you can. All except the guy I put the lock on, who was slow to get up. He’d only made it to his hands and knees. “Hey, you forgot someone! Here, let me just kick him over for ya!” I shouted to the retreating hooligans. I backed up, got a running start, and went for the punt.

Hey, guys reading this, don’t feel so bad. It couldn’t have been that hard of a kick. They caught him, after all.

I had to go back for a syringe of nanites to regrow my teeth. Thinking this was a stupid thing to have to do, I also grabbed a few extra for the road and brought Moai along because the Ikea rocket launcher wasn’t working out right. They had forgotten the Allen wrench and I don’t like my boomy thingies to have a few screws loose.

At that point, I was off to maniacally…shop for clothes. I don’t always bother saying when I do basic stuff like that, but I do it. Just like how I don’t always talk about it.

Yep. Bought some clothes. Ate some food. Commented on some stories online. Read a blog or two. Even used a bathroom. Then, Moai and I shopped for cheese. I know, all the secrets of my life that have yet to be revealed in a lot of depth.

It was night when we headed back to the apartment, with Moai looking quite human draped in all my clothes and carrying a big pile of grocery bags, and we found a whole gang waiting for me. There were seven guys backing up the asshole who wants my money. Two of him were his buddies from last time, too. The fight bitten guy and the skinny guy with the sore nuts.

The group stepped in my way and surrounded us, with the jazz dude stepping forward cautiously. He knew I could fight and wasn’t willing to take a punch. Not like he did last time. Wimped out over some teeth, blood, and spit to his eyes. That’s like a step below hitting him with a purse. Big baby.

I stopped, because why not kill people today? He lifted up his shirt, revealing the gun in his waistband. “I see you got a friend with you. How you like this? You’re gonna pay me now, and he’s gonna pay me too. Aren’t you? All fun and games until somebody grabs a gun.” I glanced around. Yeah, looked like a bunch of his friends were armed this time around. They had me surrounded.

Poor bastards couldn’t escape me then.

I grabbed the gun’s grip, made sure the safety was off, and settled my finger on the trigger. “I’ll do what now? There was some interference there.” I turned my left ear toward him to hear better. Meanwhile, jizzman had gone completely still. Sure, sure, keep a loaded weapon pointing at your crotch while you walk around. That’s fine. But the moment somebody puts a hand on it, THAT is when he realizes the danger.

He didn’t say anything. I jiggled the gun. “Let me know when you can hear my voice. Hello? Helloooo? Listen to me. Listen to meeeee.”

“Fuck,” he said under his breath.

“Ew. I’m not doing that. Not from you. In fact, I’d better make sure of it. Say, you don’t happen to be Jewish, do you?”

He shook his head. “Don’t shoot my dick off.”

“Say the magic word.”

“Please don’t shoot my dick off.”

“Then I guess your friends better drop their guns at my feet. Don’t you agree?”

“Drop ‘em. Do what he says.”

The guys began pulling out guns and tossing them by me.

“Good,” I said, grinning at my hostage, “All fun and games until somebody grabs a gun.”

We stood like that for several seconds. I knew he wanted to ask what was going to happen now. At the same time, he was too scared to ask. A man holding a loaded handgun to your dick is not a man you want to risk setting off. Hell, I could have held them there and called up Moai to bring me a chair and a drink with an umbrella in it and this guy wouldn’t have done or said anything to make me suddenly become twitchy.

I raised my other hand up and yawned. The guy flinched. His buddies inched away. They didn’t care to deal with this shit at the time. I checked my fingernails on my free hand. Ran one of them along a tooth to get the gunk out and spat it away. Then I looked him in the eyes through my glasses and smiled.

BLAM! “L’Chaim!” I yelled as he fell to his knees, clutching at his bleeding groin, whining and crying. I turned to Moai, lifted up the fedora on his head, grabbed some headware, turned, and slapped a yarmulke on the Jazz singer’s head. “Congratulations on your circumcision. Will I be getting an invite to the Bar Mitzvah?”

“He was already circumcised!” somebody yelled from the retreating group that was brought to threaten me.

“I don’t care, ahahahahaha!” I shouted, putting a hand over my head, spinning around, and firing randomly.

Ok, I guess every once in awhile I can find a way to have fun with guns.

When I took my hand away, I first saw that Moai had dropped onto his side. He rolled up to his feet, still holding the bags and without a scratch on my clothes. They don’t make statues like that anymore. I also saw I had hit a few people. Some just left blood behind when they ran, or were still running. Others were on the ground. Jazz Hands was still where I left him on the ground. I knelt down by him and put my hand on his shoulder. Trying to sound sincere, I told him, “It’s ok. You’re a man now. Just like me.” I gave him a gentle nudge to the chin with my fist like some made-for-TV movie dad.

Then I pulled down his pants, sodomized him with a pistol, and kicked it as far in as it could go for good measure. Roll canned laughter!

So, furniture and cheese acquisition finally made and the way to the apartment clear, we headed in. There we found a woman in a tight black outfit that covered her all the skin except for her face. A mask covered that instead. It was all shiny, made of a bunch of small mirrors and fake diamonds. She had an armband of similar make on one forearm. The glare from hall light was reflected back into my eyes as she took hold of the painting with the lobster and cat and dove out the window.

I chased her as far as the window because, fuck, man, I was tired, surprised, contemplative, and I had to use the crapper. After turning on the lights and checking the place, I found I still had the Cthulhu bird Picasso. I also found out she had cleanly cut the bars on the window she jumped through, so she didn’t have some sort of phasing power or anything. That helped with the contemplative part.

The real reason behind that shift in attitude in me was that she’d avoided blowing herself and the whole building up. I had that painting she stole hanging on an armed claymore, with a stepping stool made of claymores below it, and a claymore hidden behind it. Leaving Moai on guard, I turned my attention to the toilet, where I thought about the brief run-in amidst disarming the claymore my toilet paper was wrapped around.

Replaying the encounter in my head, thanks to the power of digital recording and prosthetic eyes, I made an interesting discovery. I noticed it when I froze the frame on the thief’s jump out my window, with the way the moonlight illuminated the material tightly covering her ass.

I had seen that ass before.

I ran the ass through my Anal Recognition database. Because faces are only so reliable, you know what I mean? The usual suspects were eliminated quickly. It wasn’t Nixon, Reagan, Ford, or the other presidents. Not even Roosevelt. Teddy, I mean, not FDR. Teddy Roosevelt worked on his ass a lot more than Franklin Delano. I guess that happens when you fight bad guys and travel through time with Nikola Tesla as the dynamic duo called Teddy n’ Tesla, or TnT.

It hit on a recent entry. The girl from the party.

I had just been stolen from a second time by the same woman. Hey, maybe she’ll work with me?

 

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Get Wrecked 3

You know how damn hard it is to get news on superheroes with all this political crap going on? The major news networks are shit anyway, of course. Hell, the most watched one actually decreases your knowledge of the world. So, like all people do, I tried the internet. You’d just be surprised what sorts of searches turn up when you’re looking for news involving heroines. Especially strong heroine. Boy, did I ever feel like a dope. Hash out the puns later.

I even called up Harlon. He was a little preoccupied when he picked up. “Uh, hello old friend. Pardon me, Senator, this will only be a moment.” He quieted down as he spoke next, “I hate to blow you off, but I’m discussing campaign strategy with a, um, business partner. Is this something quick?”

“Geez, didn’t mean to catch you in the middle of blowing one of the candidates you’re going to try and get elected. Or getting blown by. I haven’t quite worked that relationship out.”

“Nobody’s blowing anybody! Shit.”

“Nice upscale restaurant you’re in?”

“For now.”

“Like they’d kick you and a Senator out just for talking about fellatio. Well, maybe don’t mention fellatio to the Congressman. They’ll think it’s an Italian dish or a Shakespeare character or something.”

“What did you actually call for?”

“I wanted to know about Long Life and how the board and top guys were handling Forcelight. Aneta Long, that is.”

“The only thing the network cares about right now is putting a positive spin on this shutdown. I can pull some strings when we get back, but you of all people should know we don’t actually deal with news.”

“Do what you can, Harlon. Now, you’d better get back to jacking off the politicians.”

“I’m not jacking anyone o-!”

I hung up on him there. He gets loud when he’s embarrassed like that. I should make it up to him. Send him a big kielbasa later, that sort of thing. Yeah, kielbasa and meatballs. Some good food so he can enjoy letting the taste explode in his mouth.

I found it the news I was looking for on the corporate business reports and sites related to stock trading. That explains how the super boards didn’t have it. Boom, there in the pixels all over: Shieldwall and Long Life split.

Funding, slashed. Sounds like a little thing, but there’s the flyers, crew, support staff for maintenance of the machines and the people. Special shampoo for Gorilla Awesome. A thousand different ways that heroes become capable of fighting people like me for a day job. Otherwise, you need a double life.

I’ve spent a lot of this time having to be ready to run. I lost hideouts and equipment. People that should be dead are conspicuously alive. That hurts a man’s reputation when he prides himself on being able to eviscerate victims with a can opener.

This was always, in part, a matter of attrition, though the occasional grand gestures worked pretty well too. You want to know why it wasn’t the army, the national guard, the CIA, FBI, NSA, SWAT, or even the Long Life Peace Officers who had their chance? Those regular people may be perfectly fit for the day to day normal world, but I’m an exceptional circumstance. To beat me, you have to be superhuman or the last of your kind. A martial arts master. An unstoppable force of nature. A super soldier. A god.

Yes, a little bit of gloating megalomania. I think I’m entitled to it, though that could be the megalomania again. Good thing I can keep myself sorted out in spite of that. It’s because I’m so awesome, you know.

You know, Shieldwall may yet attempt to stand against me, but they’ll have to do better than they have been. They’ll just have to ride the bus to pursue me.

Which reminds me, got my car in. Very important. When the driver pulled up in the parking lot behind Shithole Apartments, as I call them at least, I hauled him out the open window and had Moai hold him against a wall while I inspected my Black Sunshine. Everything was in order. Nothing fiddled with, though that reminded me to check the radio. “A pop station, eh? It’s your lucky day, you know,” I said as I turned to the terrified young man who had the misfortune of doing a good job for me. I walked over to a collection of objects I’d brought out for this: a heavy stone, a carving knife, a cooler, a jar of white fluid, a belt, and a sandwich grill.

I opened the cooler, grabbed a bottle of Pepsi, and held it out for the man. He looked at me, his look of confusion compounded by his inability to completely breathe in. I patted Moai on the shoulder. “Ease up and let the man enjoy his survival.”

Moai let the driver go. I shoved the soft drink into his hand. “Like I said, good choice. One of these was yours based on what station you left it on. In this case, you have pop!”

“Do I want to know what the others represent?”

“Well, Rock was pretty easy, though Jazz,” I held up the jar of white fluid, “would have gotten…messy. If you had the blues, then you’d have been blue,” I cracked the belt at him. “While Rap would have been a more pressing matter,” I told him as I picked some crumbs out of the sandwich maker.”

“What about the knife?”

Like cats are the only curious ones.

“That was for Country stations.”

“How is a knife the same as giving me Country?”

“It would have involved getting rid of your Penisry. There’s your damn drink, here’s your damn money, and I suggest getting out of town in a hurry,” I told him as I handed him money. I then began pushing him toward the street.

He was surprised at the real tip I’d given him. “Hey, this is a lot. You sure you didn’t count this wrong?” I didn’t get to answer before this asshole driver honked at us as he sped into parking lot with barely an attempt to brake. I threw my car’s delivery boy against the wall of the building and threw myself against him as well. We did not wind up city roadkill.

I handled it very calmly for a guy in life-or-death on a regular basis. I cussed out the driver. “You fucking fuckhead! Fucking watch where you’re fucking driving you fucker! Fuck you!” I pulled up the delivery guy. “You want to add anything to it? Could stand some variety.”

“No thanks. I’m lucky enough as is. You didn’t kill me for arriving, you didn’t kill me with rock or give me a…country. You tipped me good. Now this guy missed me. I’m going to quit while I’m ahead and get the hell out of here. I met you five minutes ago and nearly died three times already. I’m gone.”

And with that, he turned to leave.

“So, think you can just walk away from me, do you?” I said softly to myself. “Moai!” I called out, “fetch me my…implements.” I then whipped the air cannon out of my coat.

Moai pushed over the various items all set on the cooler. “You know, some smooth Jazz is normally good for defusing hostile situations,” I told my minion. Then I called out to the delivery guy before he got too far away, “You might want to look at me while I do this!”

He stopped and turned. I then took aim with the cannon at the car that nearly hit us and its driver who was finishing a joint before stepping out of the car. I called to Moai, “Pull!”

In the end, that just made the guy speed some more, but this time to a car wash.

But that was all the other day. Today, I attempted to take advantage of the crash with a raid on the Guggenheim. Some of you may see the problem there. Yes, the Guggenheim is not actually a Federal museum, but my only options for those were some Native American museum and a museum about aesthetics and design. What the fuck am I possibly going to do with President Lincoln’s reupholstered desk chair, huh? You tell me how menacing that is?! “Gentlemen of the UN. I have here Abraham Lincoln’s famous ass cushion. Give me $100 million by midnight, or the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum will have to re-ass-ess their exhibits.

Just great. Washington D.C. gets institutes to air and space, American history, natural history, portraits, and even a zoo for fucking animals. That’s fucking as an adjective, not a verb, though you never know. Apparently there are some people in Washington who find bestiality to be comparable to gay sex. With how natural and widespread homosexuality seems to be, that comparison leaves me wondering if some of those guys are trying a little too hard to help the pandas reproduce.

But yeah, D.C. gets a museum to everything and what does Empyreal City get? A museum to interior design! It’s the only museum where visitors pay to leave.

So I hit the Guggenheim instead because the name is funny. There was a lot of artsy shit. I guess that’s to be expected in an art museum. I’m not an art thief, though, but I doubt anyone could do jack shit with something like “Impenetrable” which is made up of fishing wire and some steel rods.

I tested it, too. Let me tell you, those rods aren’t impenetrable at all. You throw a guy hard enough and he will get through. Great exhibit for weight loss, though.

I admit, I felt some kinship with this one Russian guy, though. He drew the same way I grab weapons: whatever the hell he felt like, it was in. I saw one looked like a cross between a bacteria and a grade school project. Sadly, it wasn’t one of those works of art with a hidden inner meaning like “I’ve secretly hidden a deadly pathogen on the backside of the canvas.”

I grabbed a souvenir, though. Before you ask, no, it wasn’t the naked bronze woman. Nice full-figured woman, more realistic on the boobal region, but I was disappointed that the curves kept some things out of sight. I tried and I tried but I just couldn’t break one of her legs off to get a better view, no matter how many times I hit her with the museum director. He was happy to volunteer rather than finish that call to the cops. Those guys have more important problems to deal with. Don’t you know there are murderers running around out there?

You know, I like to think that the fire I set was itself a form of art. After all, it showed people the beauty of something they otherwise would have overlooked. A bunch of boring paintings and shit, kept in rooms to be admired by people who don’t engage with the art on anything but an intellectual level. They sure as hell engaged emotionally when they had to avoid getting smacked in the head with a still-life or rescue some burning Picassos.

It was embracing the frailty of those works, the idea that they are truly transient, that showed the beauty of them. I think. Certainly not why I started the fire. I was just playing with a lighter when I saw this awesome picture of a blue lobster scaring the crap out of a fish.

I kept that one as a souvenir. Not the only one either. There was this one of a bird on a tree as seen if the person viewing it was Cthulhu or if the bird was some sort of Old One or something. Don’t they have monsters named after weird shapes in that whole mythology? Either way, the bird looked like a striped starfish and made a fine addition to the wall over my toilet.

Besides the souvenirs, the other good thing about the trip was that it inspired me to another grandiose action. A celebration of my imminent defeat of Shieldwall, in fact.

Oh Lady Liberty, you symbol of America. As soon as I round up a bunch of people to help me out, you’re in for an update. Some things to really make you a symbol of this country.

Folks, my next scheme is as simple as it is ingenious: we give the Statue of Liberty a boob job.

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Get Wrecked 2

Not an action-packed few days, but that sort of thing happens.

I had to place an order for my car. I believe I left it in Memphis. I could have driven it remotely, but, let’s be clear, that shit’s tough to do. Did I mention that? Very distracting, and not in the fun way, like a midget dressed as a monster bug wrestling a Spanish-speaking ice cream clown. It was a good match too, more for its humor and entertainment value than the wrestling itself.

I’ll know if that driver does anything to my car. I already put him on notice. Called him up via the car and told him that as a professional killer of man and amateur proctologist, hey may want to consider not fucking up the car. “Or it’s your ass!” I told him. And I mean it too.

Scared out of his mind. I did let him know there was a method in the car to allow him to use the restroom while driving. I remotely popped open the glass recycling bin to reveal various bottles. Sometimes you want to make that driving song “99 Bottles of Beer” interactive, you see.

I should have my car up here in a few days as a result and he’ll get a big tip.

In the meantime, Moai and I are getting settled in around here. We’re in a part of the city that’s a little worse for wear, but that suits me just fine. I already didn’t want the cops coming around. This part of the city, they don’t show even if you call them.

The new hideout…is a shithole. The good news is, I’m one Growth Ray away from having an army of killer cockroaches.

There were no Growth Rays at Michelangelo’s House of Negotiable Goods, though. Shame. I used to do a lot of work with giant monsters back in my home universe. Damn Phenomenal Fighting Justice Rangers! I’ll get you next time!

Like hell I will. I bet somebody’s working on something to cross dimensions, but it’s not me. That place brought out the worst in me.

Allow that to sink in. Not that I get worse anymore. Nope. Absolutely never. Under complete control at all times.

And now back to the House of Negotiable Goods.

Michelangelo was still alive and in business, and he still remembered me. He trotted out all sorts of equipment, talking about a so-called “Golden Touch” of mine.

I grabbed what appeared to be a baseball bat with two circular saws attached to opposet sides of the hitty end. Whatever the formal name is. I raised it up over my head to hit him with if he didn’t back off. “Listen, dude, I don’t want to spend all day touching your junk. I just came by to grab a few things. Parts, pieces, stuff I can put together. Maybe a few weapons.”

He obliged then. I noticed a pull string on the bottom of the baseball bat too. Curious, I held the wooden instrument of national pastime and broken kneecaps in front of me and tugged on it. Some sort of motor started up and the blades began spinning. “Oooh, this is nice.”

“Yeah, some folks around here have been going a little overboard with the blades after that space marine mess early on in the year. That’s one of the better weapons in that style. You interested?”

“Maybe. Tell me, does it work well with that air cannon over there?” I pointed toward white, beefy shotgun-like device with a barrel that curved outward.

I went through picking out a few things. Odds and ends I can think of a use for, as well as parts for the big gun. I just have this desire to mount a big gun on a skyscraper and go to town on the ants down below. I think it had something to do with a dream last night.

I was standing at a window for some reason. It was off in the countryside and somebody needed me to help them with some task. There was a bright light outside the window. Suddenly, I was in Tokyo fighting a giant can of Campbell’s soup with heavy metal music playing. It gets blurry after that, but I think I went for the flying elbow drop off Mt. Fuji. Then after that, there was something about being in a church where the pews were all filled with ice cream.

Some might say that’s the price of eating a chocolate chip cookie pizza with ranch dressing before bed. I pay it gladly.

I got so much, they needed to deploy a truck. There were new movers around Empyreal City. That’s good. Those guys are useful. Shame what the last guys brought down on themselves.

They’re not Screwhaul though. Nope. They were clear on that much. “We’re not Screwhaul. Those assholes got lippy and died when some super crazy got a hold of them. We’ve learned you don’t mouth off about the ones whacko enough to kill people with regularity. No, we call ourselves F-Uhaul.”

Nice people, at least until I noticed one of them spitting chewing tobacco into a cup. I grabbed him by the ear and tore it off. The guy in charge of the moving showed up with Michelangelo right behind him. I don’t know how he got it all on in time, but the fence and black marketeer was now clad in combat armor and wielding a gun in each hand and more strapped to his thighs. Big guns too. There was an average of 3.25 barrels per gun going on here. He calmed down when he saw the shrieking was me-related. I think the supervisor was going to complain, but he put two and two together when he saw me chewing on the guy’s ear. Maybe that should be “put two and one” together in light of someone missing one of a pair of things. Or he just didn’t feel like complaining and really ought to keep his employees in line with their filthy habits. What’s next, a moving company that engages in cannibalism?

Michelangelo ushered me inside to wait while they went back to work, minus the guy with the missing ear heading to the hospital. Like all good chewing gum, the ear lost its flavor after a few minutes and wound up stuck to the bottom of my shoe. Meanwhile, the mobster and I discussed the new aesthetic in weaponry. “They’re making a lot of these saw things?”

“Yeah. Ship crashed and there were some survivors, as well as a shitload of leftover gear. Government got most of it out, but they couldn’t get all, not by a long shot. They’re going to have a field day with this government shutdown, too.”

“Oh, that’s right. I wonder how long the government’s own guys are going to sit on that equipment when they’re not being paid and can’t be sure they can even take a new job.”

“I meant that you won’t see too many federally-funded heroes keep their funding right now. Hell, they can’t even afford to send the National Guard after you again. They’ve got other concerns when it comes to paying the military.”

“Yes, concerns concerning other countries.” It made me wonder how Shieldwall was doing. I hadn’t kept up with the news on them. My guess is they’re still around. I was hoping the corporate troubles would mess with them coming after me. I also may have slightly influenced that with where the F-bomb was actually dropped. Right smack dab on the Long Life tower. You think they got that message?

“This shutdown is almost perfect for you villains,” said Michelangelo.

“Yes, yes…Shieldwall can’t very well seek Federal funding now,” I said, holding my hands in front of my and crossing my fingers. It’s like…instinct. I don’t know. That’s just what you do when you plot.

“You thinking of hitting a bank or something?”

“Not necessarily. At least, not like how I normally do it. Everyone will go after those types. Then there are complications when people figure out the FDIC doesn’t have their back right now. Next thing you know, you’ll see bank jobs turn into bloodbaths. Then maybe I’ll hit them.”

“Are you going to do anything in the meantime?”

“I was thinking of burning down a national park. Lightbulb! Can you get me enough cement to fill in the Grand Canyon?”

“I’m afraid that’s a no.”

“Yeah, you would be afraid of that, you lily-livered, yellow-bellied son of a sour-“

“Yo, we’re all done here if you want to go already,” said the supervisor for F-Uhaul who poked his head in.

“Oh, thanks. Gotta go Michelle,” I said and waved goodbye to Michelangelo.

Yep, got the whole mess back to the shithole I’m hiding in. It sure was hard work watching those guys do all the hard work. Whew. What, a guy can’t sit on his ass just for once?

When they were all done, the supervisor came up to me. I noticed the other guys were all hiding in the truck. The guy in the driver’s seat looked especially on edge. When the supervisor approached, he held his hand up, “Hey, yo, I know you haven’t worked with us before, but it’s customary to, uh, tip.”

“Stay away from New Jersey,” I said and slapped a little something down on his hand. He looked down at it like someone had put a chewed up human ear in his hand, so I sweetened the pot by laying down a couple thousand on top of it.

Now, I’d built up an appetite by that time, as watching sweaty men often leaves me inexplicably drained, so I told Moai I was going out again. I think Moai feels bad about the shithole. At least shitholes on higher floors are more defensible, but shithole-quality construction has a longstanding feud with gravity that it frequently loses.

And then, boys and girls, that’s when I went grocery shopping! Mwahahahaha! Just imagine some lightning and thunder and flashing lights.

No, not an evil grocery store or a black market grocery store. Just a regular one. An evil one wouldn’t have had so many long lines. Dealing with supervillains has all sorts of risks to it, as F-Uhaul knows, but we are great people if you like prompt service. This express lane line with seven people in it taking forever? Uh uh. Doesn’t happen when you know that every second longer you take increases the chances of somebody zapping you with a freeze ray.

What got on my last nerve was the woman in front of me. She had twelve items. Twelve. The sign says ten fucking items! She wasn’t even some old person who maybe had a little trouble with their numbers at that age. No, she had some sort of sweater, and Capri pants, and a necklace, and a cutesy haircut and a baby in the cart. Now see, this is the real lesson I was trying to impart so long ago when I had a minor loss of cognitive control and brought up a fucking fiction story about people swapping bodies. The moral of the lesson shouldn’t be “Cope with what life throws at you,” people! Make life your bitch! Do not let the supposed good of society keep you from the real good!

Luckily I had the air cannon hidden in my coat and it doesn’t have a negative reaction to thoughts involving exclamation points. I whipped that sucker out and FWOOM! She splatted against the front window of the story, sticking to it a bit. Didn’t seem to do lethal damage to her, though. I grabbed her cart and pushed it toward her as well, amused clapping toddler and all. I also kicked her shoes out of the way where they still laid in front of me in line. People screamed, of course, but they do that all the time.

The cashier held his hands up. “Listen man, you can have the till, just don’t hurt me!”

I held the cannon to his face and yelled at him, “I don’t want the money! Just ring up my fucking food! You got that!”

His eyes widened in surprise and he hesitated. I turned the gun’s barrel to the side and blew the store manager off his feet as he stepped out of his office. “Did I stutter, motherfucker?!”

“No sir!” he croaked out and went to scan all my stuff. There was a quart of ice cream that refused to scan. He tried it once, twice, three times. “Oh god, don’t hurt me!” he whined. Fourth time was a charm. I tossed him some cash. “You want to p-pay?”

“Shut up and take my money, shithead, or I’ll fill you full of nitrogen, oxygen, argon, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and trace gasses!”

He rang it up and gave me my change. “D-do you want you receipt, sir?”

“This ain’t no damn Question and Answer session, what the hell’s wrong with you! You can trash that shit! Wait. No, nevermind, throw it away. Thought I might need it for tax purposes, but then I realized I was a guy holding a cannon!”

Nice place, you know. I might go back there for more shopping. I’ve been leery of yogurt since that guy was caught adding his own personal special ingredient to the creamy mix, but they do have the kind of pork chops and teriyaki marinade I like to use.

See y’all next time, readers. Same Gecko time. Same Gecko channel.

 

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