Tuesday, July 17, 2012

GZ Legends 14: SUPER SIZED!


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                Electrode threw a lightning bolt at the dark figure that knocked it back a couple of feet. It seemed unaffected by the jolt and dashed toward Electrode. Electrode could see it wasn't quite as fast as him. The warehouse made for tight confines as speedster duels go. Electrode had to move with precision or risk running right into the flesh warping fiend.

             Sandstorm turned his attention from the Raven to try and help his friend, but a flash of light caused him to turn to solid form and fall to the floor.

            “Did that hurt?” sneered a newcomer with long dirty white hair and filthy clothes like some kind of ragged street bum. His fingers glowed through his fingerless gloves as he stepped into view. This man’s toothy grin and long thin nose made Sandstorm think of a giant rat. The rancid smell of the man seemed to assault the entire area.

            “You and your partner shouldn’t be here, Vagabond. You put yourselves in jeopardy,” Raven said.

            “Oh take off, Raven. We’ll deal with these two. It’ll be fun.” Vagabond emitted another beam of white light that threw Sandstorm into a pile of crates with a crash.

            Electrode hit his opponent with several bolts and sonic attacks, but none of them even slowed the thing down. Any larger attacks would destroy the entire warehouse or risk injury to Sandstorm. Electrode needed more room to face his opponent.  With a loud blast of energy, Electrode blew a hole in a wall and ran out just slow enough to keep his pursuer interested.

            “That’s right, come and get me, whatever you are,” Electrode murmured, and it did follow.

            “My partner is called the Deformer,” explained Vagabond as he approached the crates with hands and eyes glowing. “He’s going to give your friend a new face.”

            Crates suddenly blew into the air and spun savagely around the room as Sandstorm took the form of a small tornado.  Vagabond laughed and emitted a wide strobe effect that hit home again. Sandstorm hit the wall in his human form and then the floor with a groan.

            “I can hit this entire room at once with my stellar energy blasts. Not even air molecules can escape! You’re going to die, elemental. You’re going to die and it’s going to be lots of fun.”

            “You need a harder challenge then,” Sandstorm’s body shifted into solid iron.

            Out in the parking lot Electrode had no trouble keeping his attacker at a distance but Deformer seemed to be getting faster. It was as if he could adapt to Electrode’s speed. Deformer never said anything, he just kept getting closer with each pass. Each time Electrode could feel the heat from reaching fingers that wanted to mold him into something horrifying. Electrode’s desperation mounted.

Electrode circled Deformer
            “I need to hit this guy with everything I’ve got and now.” Electrode pushed hard and flew into a speed that even Deformer didn’t see. Arcs of nuclear electricity began to build like the power in a spinning generator.

 Unsure of where to strike, Deformer actually stopped in the midst of the turbine of force and tried to gain a fix on his target’s location. Lightning flew and cracked loudly across the center of the area and repeated with escalating frequency. A bolt hit Deformer and spun him one direction. Then another hit and knocked him back the other way. All the while a bright strobe of light grew brighter and brighter, making the darkness into daylight. People could see this from blocks away and huddled together in places, wondering what new terror was coming.

   Electrode gathered energy in his cyclone and let it build and build like a nuclear turbine. Finally, even he could hold it no longer and all the power rushed into the center to meet Deformer. The mighty “CRACK” could be heard miles away and made the whole waterfront go blind for a split second. When it cleared, only a scorched area of the ground was left where Deformer was hit. 

     Electrode was on his hands and knees struggling for breath. He stared at the scorched area and then quickly looked around him. Did he kill the Deformer or did the creature manage to escape? After watching nervously for an incoming attack, he realized that Deformer must be dead. He didn’t aim to kill. He thought that Deformer was resistant enough to be just knocked unconscious with how many times he had already hit the thing. Only one time before had his power taken a life. He never wanted that on his conscience again.

            Vagabond formed a force field and Sandstorm pounded on it with heavy fists. His efforts met with laughter. “You can’t just punch away the power of the stars!”

            A concentrated beam knocked Sandstorm back down again.

            “You really aren’t much of a challenge,” Vagabond said as he hit Sandstorm again. No matter what you turn into, I can blast you to atoms. I’m going to enjoy peeling you apart by your molecules.”

            Sandstorm held up a hand as he fought to catch his breath, “Hit the whole room.” Sandstorm said as he winced in pain.

            “What?” Vagabond sneered.

            “You said you could hit the whole room.”

            “Yes, I can! Haven’t I demonstrated that?”

            “Demonstrate? Okay.” A blue hue suddenly flashed throughout the warehouse leaving a glittering shell over all things. Vagabond stood immobilized with his face frozen mid-sneer.

            “Taking up ice sculpture?” Electrode asked from just outside, "Ooh, too cold for me to come in there!"

            “He wanted a demonstration.” Sandstorm’s iron form faded away to become human. He staggered to his feet and looked to his partner. “Are you okay?”

            “I don’t know, I’m pretty sure I killed that thing and I didn’t mean to. What about you?”

            “I’m okay, just a little singed. As for Deformer, he tried to kill you and you couldn’t have known his limitations. Let’s call for a crew to take them in and find out what they have to do with this. Maybe they know where these weapons really come from and how to find Professor Zombie.”

            “Well, all that’s left of Deformer is a scorch mark, so all we have is Mr. Frosty there,” Electrode said. “So that thing was called Deformer, fitting name.”

            “And this guy is called Vagabond, and he smells like one too. I bet thawing him out will be the closest thing he’s had to bath in ten years,” Sandstorm said.

            “What about Raven and Barracuda?”

            “Raven’s gone, Barracuda is still on the ground over there, and the other thugs have run off.”

            “Barracuda is a good catch,” Electrode said with pun intended, “Not bad for our first day on the job right?”

            Sandstorm laughed, “Yeah, I guess.”

*******

Agent Redeagle
In yet another vacant and darkened alleyway, federal agents, Atomizer and Redeagle stalked through the shadows. They went to another of the demolished precinct buildings and found a trail of oil that led away into an alley. With all the evidence of gunfire, they surmised that a bullet may have hit the oil pan of a getaway van. A garage door at the end of the alleyway had dusty windows. They brushed at them for a look inside. It didn’t look like this printing company had been in business for some time and a black van sat in a puddle of remaining oil.

 Redeagle gripped the knob of a nearby door and put his shoulder against it. He had the strength to lift over 500 lbs of dead weight and toss it like a tennis ball. A gentle push in his terms, cracked the door open easily with a splintering of door frame. As he put his foot over the threshold he inhaled deeply the smells of the place. Dust, rust, rubber and oil were all picked up with his acute sense of smell. He also smelled leather, energy burns, and something alien.

 He motioned for Atomizer to follow him in and approached the front of the van with the stealth of a cat. Amongst his heightened senses and strength, Redeagle could move with total absence of sound, stealth that would make a Navy Seal weep with joy.  The giant printing press occupied the middle of the great space and the thick coat of dust said it hadn’t moved in months. The dust on the floor criss-crossed with boot tracks. A couple of weapon crates, as seen in other places, stood stacked next to some of the heavy printing rollers near a wall. Redeagle’s extra sensitive hearing picked up the tiniest scrape of boot sole rubber on metal catwalk. He glanced behind him and silently gestured with a point upward to his partner. Atomizer glanced up and nodded. Atomizer moved over near a wall and gazed up at the catwalk above them. He gave a hand signal by spreading his fingers open twice, indicating he would use his power. He focused on the back joints of the catwalk above while Redeagle ducked low by the van for cover. Those rear supports exploded on mental command with force just strong enough to throw the catwalk forward. Its inhabitants came crashing to the ground, all three of them.

            The henchmen regained footing quickly, but Redeagle landed in the midst them with equal speed. In a whirlwind of movement, all three were kicked or punched flying in different directions. their weapons clattered on the floor.  Atomizer moved right in and flurry kicked one of them several times, knocking it back down. It grabbed Atomizer by the ankle and flung him out a window with a crash. Another of the three grabbed up one of the heavy print rollers and threw it at Redeagle.

           "No thank you!" Redeagle growled as he caught the roller and threw it right back. The henchman was smashed through a cement wall.

 One of the remaining two grabbed up a weapon from the floor and aimed to fire. Its helmet exploded inward from one side instead as Atomizer stumbled back in through the hole in the wall that Redeagle made. The last one lunged for Redeagle and received a vicious spin kick that smashed in the front of the helmet it wore. Shards penetrated its skull and brain, it staggered and fell motionless to the floor.

            “Check that one,” Redeagle pointed to the one under the print roller.

            Atomizer peered over the wrecked and screwed up his face in disgust, “Eww, you crushed his head. He’s not getting back up.”

            “Head injuries, that’s what takes them down. They can sure take a hit otherwise.” he picked up one of the helmets off its wearer. “We need to get this analyzed. They’re way stronger than your store bought motorcycle helmet.”

            A grinding of metal surprised the two men as the entire printing press lurched forward and rocketed across the room at them. Atomizer had to fall back out the hole in the wall and Redeagle had to run and jump over the angles of the machine to avoid being crushed under it. The printing press crashed through brick and mortar and brought down the remainder of the broken wall and other debris raining around it. Redeagle landed on the machine’s opposite end on one knee barely keeping his balance in the rush. He looked up to see a man in leather with a helmet, easily broader than himself. The mass and muscle of a professional wrestler writhed under the leather armor and its helmet appeared reinforced with metal. Redeagle jumped up and tried a high kick but the brute caught his leg and flung him up through the skylight. Atomizer had managed to squeeze back through the debris and focused on the side of the giant’s helmet and a small explosion rocked its head sideways. It turned to him, with only slight damage to the helmet.

Atomizer
            “Oh great, it resists powers,” murmured Atomizer. He glanced about for a chance at a weapon and saw one of the energy weapons clear across the room on the floor. Atomizer’s explosive powers don’t affect living tissue.  So he could only target the leather on the big man’s chest and blast him backwards. He adjusted his cowboy hat and made a dash for it, falling with just his finger tips on the weapon and the giant’s fist wrapped around his injured ankle.

 That’s when Redeagle came down from his impromptu flight like a pro in a flying a tackle. He caught the giant around the neck and used momentum to swing under and bring a powerful knee to the side of the helmet, crushing it slightly inward. With the flex of an ankle a blade popped out from the back of his boot. He drove that blade into the opposing arm of the brute for leverage. Again and again and again, Redeagle smashed his fist into the faceplate of that helmet, only cracking it for all his effort. The monster's other hand grabbed him at the ribs and Redeagle cried out with the crushing force of its grip. It flung him away against the wreckage like a rag doll. A piece of metal stuck through Redeagle’s shoulder and he knew he had to move or die. The brute stomped forward and reached out for Redeagle’s head. A searing blast to the side of its neck staggered it sideways. Atomizer figured out the weapon’s controls and took aim. It turned to him and he fired again, putting a hole through the collar bone.  In one great stride it reached him and yanked him into the air. Atomizer stuck the barrel into the gaping wound in its neck.

            “Not very smart are ya? Armored head, not neck.” he fired and the head flew ten feet into the air. Atomizer dropped to the floor with a cry of pain. The big body swayed and then dropped backward to the floor with a heavy thud. Atomizer grabbed at his ankle.

“Sonuvarat broke my ankle. How are you doing?”

            “I’m impaled on a piece of machinery, so never better.”

            “Ha freakin ha. I’ll call for assistance and get us out of here,” headlights came on from out in the alley. “You gotta be kiddin me.”

            “They sent back up didn’t they?” Redeagle groaned.

            “Yeah, this just isn’t our day.”


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