Orchestrated By C.M. Rich (Magnetman)
By Avi, Shadowstrike, Hunter Chameleon, Makenshi
Drastic Measures (RPD)
Fatal Five, Saturn (W)
Location: Bergen, Norway
SA Troops: 1243
RPD Troops: 1446
Wily Troops: 154
RPD - Rescue the politician!
SA - Destroy the city!
Wily - Investigate unusual robot activity
It was just another business day for Senator Hugo Jorgunsson, signing bills and what not, doing the work one would expect of your typical politician. Oh, but he was more than just your typical politician. As Norway’s foremost crusader against the so-called “robot menace” to society, it was he who was the first international supporter of US Senator Keigle’s proposal of the now-infamous Shutdown Code Act; and furthermore, he was one of the driving forces behind its actual creation. As many aspects of the Shutdown Code began as his ideas, Hugo Jorgunsson was held in high regard by his peers and acquaintances. But now, he was in grave danger.
On his way through Bergen coming home from a meeting, he found himself caught in the crossfire of the Scissor Army and the occupying RPD forces. Hugo Jorgunsson was too important to die! Thankfully for him, the Robot Police Force realized this, and sent an escort squad to accompany him, protecting him from harm as needed. Robots being used as tools for the convenience of a human… to Hugo, that was just how it should be. Even still, he wasn’t all too fond of the machines. The grip of the robot trooper’s hand on his grew all the more uncomfortable as it rushed the politician to a safe haven. The cold, metallic hand was gripping him tightly, and he found it difficult to keep up with the robot… he was running out of breath, and it felt like the trooper would tear his arm clean off if this kept up for too long.
Hugo wasn’t exactly known for his athletic abilities, so if he hoped to stay alive, he had to rely on these machines for assistance, whether he liked it or not. His personal entourage consisted of a few dozen standard robot troopers, as well as two larger Special Forces units. Of course, his escape from the action would have been made all the less strenuous if he had allowed one of the Special Forces units to carry him, but there is no way he would have let that happen, no matter what the circumstance. Being held by a giant robot? No way at all! Humans should be the ones in control of the robots, not the other way around! Having only one of his hands in the grip of a smaller, less threatening-looking robot was the lesser of two evils, most certainly. But how much longer would he take being handled even like this?
It wasn’t long at all before he yanked his hand away from the robot trooper, and with that, he slowed to a halt. His robot entourage continued ahead, but stopped once they realized Hugo had separated himself from them. He was clutching his right hand, which still stung from the robot’s grip. His poor hand… the very one used to apply his signature to the bill that would become the Shutdown Code… he wouldn’t forgive the robot for this, despite its intentions of protecting him. Clearly, the troopers would have viewed Hugo a fool for this maneuver, but thanks to their programming, their thoughts didn’t stray beyond their one intended purpose: protecting Hugo. Not like those troublesome Robot Masters, the bane of Hugo’s existence. There were no enemy troopers in the immediate area, but they had to remain ever vigilant – and there Hugo was, still clutching his hand while gasping for breath. He couldn’t last long like that.
One of the Special Forces units knew what had to be done. Regardless of the consequences, he had to help the senator out by lifting him up and carrying him. As the SF unit moved to wrap one of his massive hands around Hugo, he was stopped by the politician’s yelling. “Don’t even think about it, tool!” This man was impossible. The rest of the robot troopers turned to Hugo, while the SF unit continued reaching his arm out to the politician. But in a blink of an eye, the very SF unit was knocked down… they were under attack! But… who did that? No Sniper Joe could tip an SF unit on its side like that. And whoever – or whatever – did it was quick to boot. The troopers turned their attention to the other SF unit, who was just as quickly tackled in the same fashion as the other. The attacker was too fast… none of the robots could clearly make out its form, even, but what they could make out was a sound, which could be compared to that of a ferocious growl. As they scouted around for the attacker, they were quickly drawn to the attention of a man screaming.
Hugo could no longer feel the ground under his feet. And to make matters worse, there were sharp, metallic talons wrapped under his shoulders and around his arms. From his perspective, the view of the robot troopers grew smaller and smaller… however, he could clearly make them out to be aiming their weapons at him… or were they aiming at whatever it was that was carrying him into the air? But they could not fire, due to the risk of hitting Hugo instead of their intended target. The rather chunky Hugo was a much larger target, anyway. As he was hoisted up, higher and higher, he could only watch as the rest of the troopers were tackled by the same blur from before. And then… a massive laser blast consumed them. While it could be said that the SF units managed to survive, the same couldn’t be said for the standard troopers. But at that point, Hugo was too far up now. Even the Special Forces looked like ants at this height…
Much of what happened then was drowned by Hugo’s fear. But soon, he found himself dropped on the ground, in a rather secluded area. He managed to stand up, but even still, he was shaking with terror, and his joints were in pain. Besides, they got dirt on his nice suit! SOMEBODY was going to pay for all this, that he would be sure of. But before he could plot his vengeance on anybody, he felt something strike him in the back of his head… and everything went blank from there.
--------------------It had been too long. The RPD Robot Master team known as Drastic Measures had suffered extensive damages to each of its members in the last battle, and only now, uncountable numbers of days later, were they each fully repaired. The one known as Burstgirl was the last to leave the repair bay. Having lost both arms in the previous battle, she was still taking time to get used to her new ones, as she moved them about in a fashion that would make one ask, “what’s the deal with her?”
"Yes... I had suspected that the Scissor Army were trying
to find Cossack when they decided to move into St. Petersburg," Makenshi
said, looking at the electronic map before him. "And then,
we see Scissor Army troops all over Russia. There's no doubt
about it." He kept his gaze on the screen, trying his best
to ignore the piercing eyes of the commanding officers that were
listening to him.
"That's good, now we don't have to go through any trouble to give that scumbag Cossack what he deserves!" One of them said. Some of the other officers laughed.
Makenshi shook his head. "No, this is bad." The laughter was cut short.
"Now, how many robots does Cossack have on his side?" Makenshi inquired.
"Around forty," he said, answering his own question. "Now, let's say the SA manages to find Cossack's base. They completely destroy it, and kill Cossack in cold blood. I ask you, where are those forty-or-so robots going to go without a leader?"
"Wouldn't the SA just kill them all?" Captain Landigarm retorted.
"Or, how about the Scissor Army captures each and every single one of them, takes them back to base, and assimilates them into the army. Those forty-or-so Cossackbots could then become forty-or-so Wraithmans and Mysterymans, or they could become five teams of Ascendant Androids or Seven Mercenaries, and you know by now how deadly all of them are alone."
"So what do you propose we do?"
"Well, suppose we beat them to it."
"You don't mean-"
"Why not? It's either having the Cossackbots with us, or them."
"Well, there's only one problem with that. We have no idea where Cossack's base is, and the SA probably have more of a lead than we do."
"SO WHY AREN'T WE LOOKING FOR HIM?!" Shiken suddenly yelled. He immediately turned and saw the Drastic Measures giving him an odd look.
"Because Crorq hasn't told us anything about where to look or who this 'major pusher of the Shutdown Code' is supposed to be," Junk replied bitterly.
"No, no, no, I wasn't talking about... Nevermind," Makenshi muttered.
Captain Spiegel's voice rang out in Makenshi's ear. "Yo, if you're going to scream like that without warning, how about closing communications before you do it next time, okay? Jesus Christ that did a number on my ear drums."
"Whoa! Who's that?" Cloud exclaimed in surprise. Apparently Spiegel's speech extended to the Drastic Measures' communicators as well.
"It's your Watcher, that's what!" the Captain said, his voice suddenly near them.
"Wait, are you physically with us this time?" Makenshi inquired. "Where are you?"
"Right in front of you."
"Why can't I see you?"
"Of course you can't see me! Haven't you heard of our neat cloakers?"
"Er, you might want to stay a bit farther away from us," Turbo said. "If we can't see you we can hit you accidentally."
"Don't worry, I'll be sure to stay out of everyone's way. Of course if it seems like you're purposely shooting random places, you'll suffer a nice hard shutdown!" he explained, faking maniacal laughter.
The Drastic Measures found no humor in this. Makenshi bit his lip. Spiegel was kind of a nice guy to him, but he wasn't sure how the Watcher would act towards robots.
Another voice came in via their communicators. "Alright, chumps, I'll be your navigator for today. I just received a distress signal from our man. Take a look." A map of Bergen appeared across the group's optical sensors, glasses in Makenshi's case. There was a red dot on the southwest tip of the city. "But if you look closer..." and the map zoomed in, revealing that the dot was outside of the city's boundary and into a blue shaded area. "He's in the water, probably held prisoner on a boat." The map disappeared.
"Alright, folks, we know where the guy is, so let's get a move on!" Spiegel ordered. An explosion sounded in the distance. "Remember, our objective is to save this guy, not stick around and fight the Scissor Army! Our troops our already taking care of that! So stay away from unnecessary battles!"
"Hey, Captain, where are my bodyguards?" Makenshi asked.
"You don't need them! They're helping out the others!"
"Gotcha," the gunslinger said.
As they ran through the city, being careful not to attract the attention of the Scissor Army, something bothered Turboman. "Hey, who do you think captured this guy, anyway? I couldn't have been the Scissor Army, because then he would already be dead."
"It could have been Cossack or Wily," Spring suggested.
"Hmmm, Wily seems more likely," Burstgirl replied, apparently deep in thought.
"Reports state that the guy was carried off by a bird-like robot," Vatnick informed.
"That sounds like Wily with the animal motif and all," Makenshi mused, "But the only bird-like robot I can think of that he has are.... those birds that drop eggs. What are those called?."
Makenshi thought until the proper name came to mind.
"Yeah, Pipis," he finished.
"......It could carry a giant egg, but I don't think it can carry a man," Burst said.
"Yeah, and the bird that carried away the guy was reported to have much larger wings, like a condor," Spiegel added.
"Alright, just who is this 'guy' supposed to be anyway?!" Burstgirl said impatiently. "We should at least know why he's so important that we have to go through all this trouble to rescue him!"
"Eh, you didn't get the memo?" Vatnick asked.
"I'm pretty clueless as well," Makenshi said.
"Well, his name is Senator Hugo Jorgunsson, and he played an important part in the creation of the Shutdown Code Act. He got Norway to be the second country to pass the Act as well, and is quite enthusiastic about anti-robot rights."
"Oh, great, I shouldn't have asked," Burst said, rolling her eyes. "Now I feel less motivated to save him."
"Well, I don't know about you, but I'd like to have a successful mission for once," Turbo stated grimly. "You know, so Crorq doesn't start pulling more random objects out of his ass and throwing it at us."
The rest of the DM murmured in agreement.
Makenshi sighed. It was going to be a long day.
--------------------"Wakey wakey, eggs and bakey..."
Lento was the one who
spotted the newcomers as they arrived. He immediately reported
to his teammates.
"Six units from the RPD deployed. Drastic Measures and Shiken Max."
"Shiken is an honorable fellow, we shall have no problem convincing him we are not their foes."stated Staccato. "For the Drastic Measures, however ... I cannot tell yet."
"Excuse me, but who're these guys ?" asked Saturn.
" How can you not know this ? ... Yeah, being in space and all. Sorry.
"Anyways, Drastic Measures is the Team from the Seventh Rebellion. Turboman, Burstgirl, Cloudman..." explained Riff.
"And so far, they got it real bad !" chuckled Warpman.
"Two of them left for Cossack at the beginning -Slash and Shade. The latter apparently blew up in Lima - that's what Omniman says, anyway.
"They lost Toronto to the SA, and were with the Warriors when they took Hong Kong. That's where Freezeman was caught by the SA. Poor chums..."
Saturn was disturbed by Warpman's sadism, as it was worse than his. How could one enjoy laughing at the problems of another during such difficult times ?
Before he could ask an explanation, he remembered the other name mentioned by Lento.
"And what about that Chicken guy ?"
"Correction : Shiken Max."stated Lento. "Human RPD Officer. Fights with twin pistols."
"We fought side by side in Anchorage. He is a brave fellow, and a good fighter." completed Staccato.
"We'll continue this discussion later. Let's follow them for now. Fatal Five, go !" commanded Riff.
Saturn stood still. He needed to know a last thing before going to his mission...
"Why was I teamed up with you guys ?"
Warpman chuckled again. "Our leader believes in lucky numbers, isn't it ?"
Riff's face looked contrived, like someone forced to explain a bad joke. "Well, we're the Fatal FIVE, after all. You see how the five of us fared so far in the War -rather well, I could say-, and ... I mean ... if you compare with the Evil Eight, who're only two now... we needed someone good to help us as long as Karasû is under repair, and ..."
His face got serious. "You're gonna stay and chat here for how long ? We have a mission to do !" The Fatalists and the drones followed their leader, soon joined by Saturn.
The Stardroid wasn't sure to completely appreciate the Fatal Five - Warpman looked like a complete bastard, and Staccato looked "outdated" in mind, but their leader considered him a good fighter. That's all he needed to cheer up, after his defeat in Lisbon.
He was starting to consider them better than deadweights.
--------------------An RPD patrol boat sailed the port of Bergen, Norway. Aboard the vessel were the Drastic Measures (sans Burstgirl who opted to swim instead), the gunslinger Shiken Max (AKA Makenshi), the invisible Watcher known as Spiegel, and of course the crew, consisting of standard RPD troopers. The rain poured down upon them as they sped across the water… Bergen was The City of Rain, after all. Water, rain… this was Burst’s kind of place. She would have been enjoying this if only the mission wasn’t to save some stupid politician who would have been better off dead. And the fact that the team now had some invisible guy breathing over their necks didn’t make things any easier… even if he was on the boat and she was in the water. This Shiken Max guy seemed decent enough, at least.
--------------------Riff had just spotted the RPD members heading down the sewers.
--------------------The RPD gang came across a door. This time, it was more welcoming and opened automatically when they approached it. Moving down the hall, there was another door. They turned right to find yet another door. Only ten paces in was another....
How long they have been
traveling through this undersea labyrinth, none of them could say.
Hall after hall, door after door… it felt like hours they had searched
through this lonely place for Senator Hugo Jorgunsson. In fact,
it felt like they were walking around in circles, as a wave of
déjà vu swept through the air. They weren’t sure whether they had
already visited the areas they found themselves in, or whether
the different rooms just simply looked all the same. Through every
door, there seemed to be another hallway, and if they were lucky,
an empty storeroom.
“I think it would be best we’d split into smaller groups, to cover more ground,” Turboman suggested.
“Wait.” Burst interrupted. She wore a grim expression on her face.
“Did something happen?” Junkman inquired.
“I found the senator,” Burst said solemnly.
“Alive, unfortunately.” She shook her head, and proceeded to one door that she had left ajar, with the rest of the team following. Inside this otherwise empty storeroom, they could see the back of a chunky, balding man in a blue business suit, with his arms tied behind the chair, and his legs tied together. He didn’t bother to take notice of any of the Robot Masters, as he sat, shaking in fear. Burstgirl slowly backed out of the room.
“Mwhehehe… you had better be afraid,” she chuckled to herself as she drew out her combat knife. But at that moment, an arm stretched out from the other side of the doorway, and pulled the knife from her grip. “Aw, what did you do that for?” Burst said in a childish tone. “I was only going to cut him free, y’know.”
“I know you were,” Springman said. “But we don’t need you “accidentally” cutting his hands off in the process.” Burst had to admit – she was pretty easy to see through at this point. “Just give it back when you’re done.” She ordered.
With that, Springman turned to the senator, and leaped above his chair from behind, then landed directly in front of him. At the surprise of seeing the robot suddenly landing in front of him, Hugo let out a piercing scream. “M-M-MONSTER!” He cried out. Indeed, Springman had a most unusual appearance, being a robot whose body was made up of a series of coils, but never once had he considered being described as a “monster.” Strange, maybe… a talking slinky, maybe… but never a monster.
Hugo shook his head around franticly. By now, he had caught a glimpse of all of the Drastic Measures, which only added to his state of panic. “WHAT ARE YOU THINGS?! LEAVE ME ALONE! GET OUT GET OUT GET OUT!”
“Senator Jorgunsson, please,” Turboman attempted to reason with the panicked man. “We are here to-”
“TO KILL ME?!” Hugo shouted out. “You’re with that thing that calls itself a doctor, aren’t you, you, you… THINGS!”
“Senator, relax,” Springman said. “We are with the RPD, and we were sent to rescue you. Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to free you...”
“Get that knife away from me!” Hugo commanded. “So what if you are with the government, tool, if you bring that knife so much as an inch closer to me, I will see to it that you are shut down and recycled into something more useful, like paperclips!” Even the wise Springman didn’t know how he would handle the creep at this point. So, he turned to Makenshi, and handed him the knife. Makenshi nodded, and approached the senator.
Hugo was slightly relieved now. He could tell by looking at Makenshi’s face that he was a human. After all, his face didn’t possess that creepiness factor to him that the synthetic, humanlike faces of many Robot Masters seemed to possess. He remained fairly calm as Makenshi cut his bonds, eventually seeing him free and without injury. “Thank you, son,” Hugo said. “What is your name?”
“Shiken Max, sir,” Makenshi answered, before handing the knife back to Burstgirl. While he couldn’t say he was fond of the man himself, he did what had to be done, and now they could leave this stuffy underwater complex. But somehow, this seemed far too easy. And what about “the thing that calls itself a doctor” that Hugo mentioned?
Then, there were those sounds again. Those clicking sounds.
--------------------The Wily bots found themselves in an office. The cubicle was relatively small, and the desktop and computer was covered in dust. On the floor were some tattered clothes, and the wall was stained with eerie patches of blood.
--------------------Getting out of the place was going to be yet another arduous trek. Thankfully though, Vatnick was able to act as their navigator and could tell whether they were getting closer or farther to land.
--------------------Dr. Wolfland chuckled. He observed all of his... creations... flood the halls, stalking for prey. There was that accursed RPD squad, as well as some stray dogs that wandered in. No matter. They would all become food, for this lab would be their final resting place.
--------------------The Wily group had entered a larger room - a hall, maybe. After the latest Metool was in, the door they came by locked and every light went off.
They were extremely
fast. Without enhancements they could still outrun a sports car.
But now, artificial muscles powered their legs to supernatural
proportions, allowing them to dash around like blurs with sharp
Turboman took out his scorch saber, swinging furiously at the hell cats that just kept coming. One leaped up to tackle him, only to meet with headlights in the face. Two more cheetahs followed up in front and behind him, and he kicked once more, this time arcing his foot upwards and going all the way in a flip like a bicycle kick, until his foot ultimately slammed down on the creature behind him. He then nimbly jumped back to his feet to combat another wave, with Junkman and Springman at his side.
Behind them, Makenshi, Captain Spiegel, and Cloudman were combating hordes of condors, though they looked more like a collective batch of huge metallic wings. Said wings were powerful enough to send short gusts of wind with each flap, giving the threesome trouble to keep their balance. Makenshif fired his wind bullets, bunching the birds of prey together in a Tornado Hold, while Spiegel or Cloudman finished them off.
Then, the attacking animals started to become more assorted. Snakes that spewed acid... Lions of terrifying strength... enormous gorillas armed with laser cannons. It seemed endless.
“HEEEEEEEEEEELP!!!” Screamed Hugo amidst the chaos. It seemed now that every RPD member in the place was engaged in battle with some form of scientifically mutilated animal… well, all of them except for Burstgirl anyway. Well… as much as she hated it, the whole purpose of the mission was to save this buffoon, and since she wasn’t tied up at the moment…
She stood beside the senator, but it seemed the closer she got to him, the farther he backed away. “Look,” Burst stated, “If you don’t want to die an awesomely horrible death, I’d stop backing away if I were you.”
“Never!” Hugo shouted. “Shiken! Shiken Max! Where are you?!”
Burst displayed a wicked smile. “He’s a bit busy at the moment. So I’m afraid you are with me, buddy. Mwehehehehe…” Hugo grew all the more disturbed. “No… NO! I’d sooner die than entrust my life to a-” he then turned around, and saw himself confronted by large beast – it looked to be a lioness wearing a steel mask, that had two large, pointy fangs, much like that of a saber tooth tiger.
“AAAAAAAAAAAAAHH!!! HELP! HELP!” Screamed Hugo as the lioness opened her mouth and let out a roar that shook the room. She looked about ready to rend Hugo limb from limb, as he fell to the floor in fear. Burst sighed in frustration, before letting out a flurry of bumper bubbles. Each of the bubbles slammed into the lioness, tossing her around the room and onto her back. And then, one of the other bubbles slammed Hugo in the face. “Sorry,” Burst muttered.
“You had better be sorry!” Hugo roared. “You almost snapped my neck off! And my nose… it hurts! If I find so much as a scratch on me, consider yourself shut down!”
“I wasn’t apologizing to you,” Burst said. “I was apologizing to the kitty.” Hugo let out an aggravated grunt before Burst continued. “Now thank me for saving your miserable life.”
“Do I thank toasters for warming my bread?” Hugo spat back. “Do I thank my chair at home for massaging my back?! DO I THANK THE FLOOR FOR ALLOWING ME TO WALK ON IT?!”
Burst was about ready to shout an insult at Hugo that involved every swear word in her vocabulary, but her attention was quickly diverted from him by the lioness getting up. “Well, what are you waiting for?” Hugo barked at Burst. “KILL IT!”
“Heh, I’m trying.” Burst said as she released more bumper bubbles at the lioness, tossing the beast about once more. Of course, she wasn’t actually trying, or else she would have broken out the explosives by now. These animals… they were just pawns in the game of some sick creep. She was normally fine with mercilessly slaughtering her enemies, in fact she enjoyed it… but only if they had done something to deserve death. These were animals… much different than a human or a robot. They never chose to fight in the name of some mad doctor.
It was a good thing Hugo didn’t know that Burst had bombs. A robot going against a human’s wishes of its own free will… that was the very reason why he couldn’t stand the Robot Masters.
Finally, it was all over. The last creature fell, dead, and there was only a sea of techno-organic corpses. The group had not budged the entire time.
Makenshi caught his breath and looked around. Everyone looked a bit worse for wear. He and Captain Spiegel were bleeding where they had been clawed at. Cloudman's chest plate had also been abused by acid, Turboman's lights were busted, Junkman had sacrificed some of his armor, Springman looked like he could fall apart at any second, and Burst had several dents in her armor. The only person who was still in top condition was Hugo Jorgunsson, though at some points in the battle he had been close to soiling himself.
"Let's.... Just get outta here...." Spiegel huffed, and they silently continued their way through the labyrinth.
"I'm starting to think that Dr. Wily is behind this," Junkman said grimly. "If you think about it, the guy has a lot of minions based on animals."
"Yeah..." Cloudman agreed. "Those animals back there were like his animal-bots, except they were real... and scarier," he added with a shudder.
"Wily is evil, but I didn't think that he could do something so cruel..." Burstgirl said.
Makenshi sighed. "I dunno.... While there's the possibility that we're dealing with a third party, Wily is the only guy between him, the SA, and Cossack who would lead us into a trap like this."
"Well, I'll bet a hundred dollars we run into his lackeys on our way out," Junkman muttered.
"Ha! You're on!" Cloudman shouted instinctively.
--------------------The "thing" they had before their eyes had very few human left. At this level, cyborg was a more appropriate word.
--------------------The RPD group fought their way through the wave of cyborg animals once more, but their numbers suddenly dropped dramatically until not one was in sight. They had all retreated.
Every single door was
open, beckoning them to go through them without backstabbing them
and slamming down. Vatnick was able to track Hugo's location, and
with all of the passages cleared, they were able to get to his
location quickly. It had to be a trap....
The room was large, like an auditorium. Tanks, computers, and other machines were lined along the walls. And at the other end of the room, with Hugo Jorgunsson in his claws, was Dr. Wolfland, grinning at them.
They all gasped. This.... thing was behind all of this?
"Well, well, well, if it isn't the accursed lapdogs of the Robot Police Department!" Wolfland bellowed. "Did you come to retrieve your precious legislator?" and he lifted Jorgunsson by the collar and waved him around. The senator was absolutely petrified and his screams were unrelenting. Captain Spiegel raised his rocket launcher, but Wolfland quickly thrust the senator in front of him. "Uh-uh-uh, Nicholas Spiegel! You wouldn't want your precious legislator to be blown to bits, would you?"
"How do you know my name?!" Spiegel demanded furiously. Something was suspicious about this guy...
"All in due time, all in due time," the doctor chuckled, but then something exploded at his feet and he jumped back. Makenshi had fired his Explosive rounds, and Junkman followed up by blasting Wolfland's exposed side with junk while he was distracted. By the time the cyborg regained his composure, Turboman had already snatched the senator out of his hands and dashed him to safety.
"Wow.... That worked out perfectly," Cloudman commended, amused. "Mysterious voice, you sure know your stuff!"
The Lieutenant, who had quietly radioed the maneuver to the group, was heard chuckling in their ears. "Well, that was a bit too risky...."
Wolfland cursed for letting his guard down. Rage welled up inside him and he let out a ferocious, maddening roar.
"INFIDELS!! SINNERS!! FASCISTS!! IT IS YOU WHO ARE THE REAL MONSTERS!!!
"AND YOU!" Wolfland cried, pointing an accusing claw. "YOU.... NICHOLAS.... YOU'RE ONE OF THEM!!! MY ONLY FAMILY LEFT... BETRAYED ME! MY SON...."
It was then that Makenshi realized the doctor was pointing at Captain Spiegel. The Watcher was transfixed by the doctor's words, his face showing only pure shock. Shock at who this..... thing was supposed to be.
Dr. Wolfland Spiegel.
His father's voice grew more hysterical. "COME, LOOK!" and he dashed over to the tank that held the two figures. They obeyed, and saw a child and a woman suspended in it. The child looked similar to the baby on the poster they had seen.
Captain Nicholas Spiegel, the commander who was always tough and arrogant, now spoke only in a whisper. "Is that.... Ralph.... and... Mom...?"
"YES!" Wolfland confirmed, laughing hysterically. "WHEN YOUR BROTHER WAS BORN HIS SPINE WAS DEFORMED, BUT WE FIXED IT WITH OUR EARLY RESEARCH! IT WORKED FOR A WHILE! IT WAS A MIRACLE! BUT THEN HE SUDDENLY REJECTED HIS IMPLANTS AND YOU AND YOUR MOTHER LEFT US! WHEN SHE DIED, I FOUND HER GRAVE AND DUG UP HER BODY WITH MY OWN HANDS! I COMPLETELY CONVERTED THEIR BODIES TO MACHINES! BUT THEY NEEDED SOULS..... MESMERMAN PROMISED TO COMPLETELY RESTORE THEM, AS WELL AS ME! NICHOLAS...... JOIN US, AND WE CAN BE A FAMILY AGAIN! HAHAHAHA..."
Captain Spiegel was trembling. This couldn't be happening. It was all too insane. How had someone of his own flesh and blood degrade into something like this? All he could do... Was stand there, trying to keep his own sanity from shattering.
"Wait, did you say Mesmerman?!" Turboman shouted. "You can't honestly believe what that bastard says!"
"HAHAHAHA.... AND WHY SHOULD I BELIEVE YOU SCUM OVER HIM?!" Wolfland retorted. "EVEN IF HE IS LYING, THAT DOESN'T CHANGE THE FACT THAT YOU WILL DIE HERE! HAHAHA.... AHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!" and he darted over to a control panel and slammed a button down. Immediately, a siren split the air, and over the intercom, a voice stated in a matter-of-fact manner, "WARNING.... WARNING... Emergency self destruct sequence activated. Please evacuate immediately. There are.... 10.... minutes remaining until detonation."
"OHHH, IF ONLY I HAD MY CANNON..... BUT THOSE DAMN WILY BOTS DESTROYED IT!" Wolfland said to himself.
Cannon, huh... Makenshi thought. I'll remember to thank the Fatal Five next time I see them...
Dr. Wolfland began his assault. His machine-guns open fired and the group scattered for cover. Burstgirl quickly booted Hugo under a table, ignoring the threats that followed afterward. Then she realized that Captain Spiegel was still frozen in place and did the same.
Makenshi took cover behind a chair and loaded his Icarus pistols with ice bullets. Once it was clear he emerged from his hiding place and fired at Wolfland's guns. Some bullets made their mark and disabled the barrels, but there were still many more that kept on firing.
Junkman formed a shield, then charged at the doctor, his machine-gun bullets clattering uselessly against the junk. However, turrets opened up in the doctor's chest plate and launched a flurry of missiles, destroying, Junkman's shield and damaging him. However, this was enough of a diversion for Burstgirl to encase one of Wolfland's wing-like appendages in Danger Wraps, and they detonated, thus disabling half of his machine-guns.
The Fatal Five silently watched the battle by the door, unnoticed.
"Should we aid them?" Staccato asked.
"No way!" Warpman exclaimed. "They're just going to backstab us in the end like they always do! I say we just leave them alone!"
"Requesting that we find a way out before this place goes boom," Lento said.
"Indeed," Riff agreed. Then he noticed something. "Hey, where did Saturn go?"
Blades around ten feet long popped out of Wolfland's four knees, and while his upper body remained in place the legs stomped rapidly in a circular motion, sending the blades whirling around like helicopter blades. Springman was unfortunate enough to be in the way and he jumped up just in time, grabbing hold of Wolfland's torso and swinging around until he was holding on to the monster's shoulders, with the blades whizzing dangerously below. A compartment opened up in Wolfland's back, revealing...
Springman was now doing a handstand on the doctor's shoulders, barely evading the plasma shot that would have devastated him at point blank. He then jumped off, landing behind the doctor, and stretched his arms below the blades, seizing Wolfland's ankles. Wolfland tripped, landing awkwardly on his freakishly sharp and elongated knee caps, the blades screeching clumsily on the floor. Turboman seized the opportunity and thrust his scorch saber into Wolfland's back. The doctor roared in pain, retracted his blades, and jumped to his feet, swiping at Turbo with his claw and sending him flying back a few feet. Then, he felt a sharp stinging sensation all over his body. Makenshi was firing volleys of Volt bullets, with Cloudman unleashing Thunder Bolts simultaneously.
"Thanks to your titanium body, the pain is magnified, isn't it?" Makenshi taunted with a smirk.
Wolfland furiously charged towards the two. Cloudman retreated, but Makenshi continued firing his Volt shots. However, the insane scientist was ignoring the pain and continued to dash towards him. Wolfland opened up his chest plate, revealing the missiles waiting to be released...
..But a rocket slammed into the exposed compartment, which started a chain detonation of all of the missiles. Makenshi turned to his savior and saw that it was Captain Spiegel, who had only recently snapped out of his spell.
"You know, you could have done that at the beginning!" Makenshi yelled jokingly. The Watcher didn't reply.
Junkman blasted off the remaining wing of machine guns. Wolfland's screams pierced the air, filled with agony and hate.
"There are... 5... minutes remaining until detonation."
“Let’s get the hell out of here!” Junkman shouted as he made a dash for the hallway.
“No need to state the obvious!” Turboman said as he shifted into his car mode and revved his engines. He zoomed through the halls, checking in his rear-view mirror to make sure everyone was following. There was Junkman, Cloudman, Springman, Shiken, Spiegel… but where was Burstgirl? Maybe she was there, but he couldn’t concentrate on looking right now… maybe it was the state of panic as he rushed to find the exit to the sewers that interfered with his concentration, or maybe it was the yelling coming from his back seat… wait, what?
“LET ME OUT OF THIS TIN CAN! LET ME OOUUUUTTT!!!” screamed Hugo, who seemed to have been thrown haphazardly into Turbo’s seat. He was tossed from side to side with each turn Turbo made, letting out a scream each time. When the hell did he get in here?! “Okay, who threw THIS into my back seat?”
Cloudman spoke up. “Um… yeah… you see, Avi came up to me just before and was like, “Here, take him, I’m sure you’ll take REEEEEEEEAL good care of him Cloudy boy, mwahahahaha” and I was all like, “yay, I get to be a bodyguard!” But then he started being a baby, and I didn’t feel like being the bodyguard anymore, so, um… there you have it!”
Cloudman’s punishment would have to wait until later. Same to Burstgirl, who just had to entrust the senator’s care to the team’s troublemaker. Wherever Burst was…
--------------------Wolfland’s crazed laughter never ceased, even as he stood in place, as bubble after bubble latched onto his body. “HA HA HA HA HA… HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…” It continued on, until not even the slightest sign of his body could be seen under the coat of explosive bubbles.
--------------------“Now, what would be a good wall to break through…” Burst thought to herself as she made her way across the complex. Along the way, she could make out the sounds of hurried footsteps. Perhaps from those pesky Wily bots? “All the more reason to flood this place, mwhehehehehehehe…” Just to be on the safe side, she released a trail of explosive puddles from the soles of her boots with every step, hoping to catch a Wily bot or two slipping to his death.
When the RPD forces had moved into the complex, Vatnick had charted
a map of all the paths they went through as they progressed. Thanks
to his effort he was able to give them directions to dash out of
the structure in time. Of course, they could have opted to blow
a hole in the wall and swim to the surface if Hugo hadn't objected.
The important part, though, was that they all made it back in one
piece, and they were grateful for that.
They were back in the sewers now, and heard the distant rumbling of the secret laboratory being demolished into oblivion. "Burst, are you alright?" Turboman radioed.
"Right here," she said, tapping him on the shoulder. Everyone was relieved.
Then, there was a soft thud. They turned, and saw something bright approaching them. It took a moment for them to realize that it was the upper half of Dr. Wolfland, engulfed in flames and crawling towards them, moaning pathetically. The sight was frightening yet... sad. Makenshi couldn't help but feel sorry for the man.
Burst was about to rush forth to finish off the monstrosity once and for, all but someone stuck out an arm to stop her. It was Captain Spiegel. "Sorry," he said. "But this is my job..."
The Watcher lifted his rocket launcher, aiming at his father. No... What USED to be his father. Wolfland groaned miserably, extending a trembling arm at his son, reaching for him.
Captain Nicholas Spiegel pulled the trigger, and Doctor Wolfland Spiegel was no more.
There was only silence. Then, the Watcher spoke, his voice shaky yet determined. "This.... This is why the Shutdown Code is necessary. Robots.... they have such a seductive amount of power. Prolonged life.... durability... intelligence... weapons... Humans tempted by these powers will turn themselves into these machines, but sometimes the power is too much for them. Sometimes that unsatiable thirst consumes them and they turn into monsters.... Like my father. The Shutdown Code is a deterrent to prevent such things from happening. If it had been enacted sooner, my father wouldn't have sealed his own fate. And maybe then he'd still be alive...."
Makenshi stepped up. "That may be true, but not everyone succumbs to their own power when they become robots. The Drastic Measures and the Mechanical Maniacs, they still act like they are ordinary human beings. And what of the pure Robot Masters who were built? They have feelings. They laugh. They cry. They love. They're like us too. The problem with the Shutdown Code is that it's outright unconstitutional. Yes, robots are capable of damage and light shutdowns can be used as their version of handcuffs, but when you press that switch a second time, giving them the death penalty without any trials or appeals, that's downright tyranny. Just because they're... Well, more "privileged" than us in terms of intelligence and power, doesn't justify us taking away their rights!"
Captain Spiegel turned away. "I.... I don't know.... I didn't say that I agreed with all of the Shutdown Code's mechanics, but.... I don't know...."
When all was said and done, news reached the team that the RPD forces had routed the occupying SA soldiers and secured the city of Bergen. Between them being driven out, Wolfland being defeated, and Hugo rescued, it was safe to say that the Drastic Measures had finally earned themselves a much-deserved victory. With no major damages to speak of, it seemed they could finally return to base on a good note.
However, Turboman seemed to forget that he was lugging around a certain politician until he felt knocking on his back window. “LET… ME… OUT…” Hugo wheezed. Turbo let his back door open, resulting in Hugo falling outward, landing face first on the ground before changing back into his humanoid mode. Burstgirl couldn’t help but laugh at the pathetically amusing sight of the senator’s misfortune.
Hugo got back up on his feet… his hands were clenched into fists, and his face red with rage. The Robot Masters backed away as he stomped towards Spiegel and Makenshi. “You need to replace these tools!” He commanded, pointing at the Drastic Measures, who only stared at him in disgust.
“I’d just like to make sure,” Makenshi stated, “that you know those “tools” were the ones who saved your life, Senator.”
“Of course those things saved my life, what do you think their purpose is?!” Hugo roared. “But they didn’t do a very good job in the process. In fact, they almost killed me! I never thought I would get out of that worthless tin can of a driverless car, especially the way it was smashing me around like that!” It could be said that it was a good thing that the enraged expression on Turboman’s face couldn’t be seen beneath the visor.
Hugo continued his rant. “Then there was that floating one. It doesn’t take a genius to realize that that thing was programmed with the mind of a complete idiot! How is that one even allowed on the force?! And that… weird one…” Hugo gestured to Springman. “Shiken, had you have not stepped in, it would have stabbed me with that knife! I just know it! And don’t even get me started on the one that looks like a girl…”
Makenshi grew more annoyed at the senator by the second. “Listen… sir… all that matters is that you are safe and sound, so-”
“These are urgent matters, boy!” Hugo barked. “We’re lucky things turned out the way they did, but if they ever had to do this again, I just know that they would mess up! They are reckless, unruly, and really, if you insist on using robots, scrap them and replace them with superior models! I mean, look at that one!” He pointed at Junkman. “That thing is CLEARLY a walking pile of trash!” Oh, if only there was no Shutdown Code in place, Junkman would have torn him in two by now.
“I can’t stress this enough,” Hugo continued, “THEY NEED TO BE REPLACED! Would you still use a toaster that burns your bread? NO! Sure it toasts the bread like it is intended to, but it doesn’t matter in the end because you can’t eat burnt bread! See what I am getting at? Just like I’d want a toaster that makes nice, edible toast, I want a police squad that can actually do its job without causing any harm to the one they were sworn to protect!”
“Sorry, Senator, but you look perfectly unharmed to me.” Spiegel said. “Now if you would please-”
“Please WHAT?! Listen carefully now, Captain. If you don’t do away with these rouge machines, or at least reprogram them to be more loyal to us humans, you can bet I will stop supporting your- GAAAAAAHHHH!!!” A fist struck Hugo’s face from the side. And then another, straight to his nose.
“No, Avi! STOP IT NOW!” Turboman commanded. But Burstgirl continued viciously clobbering the hapless senator from all around, until she wrapped her hands around his neck, and squeezed as hard as she possibly could. Hugo’s face began to lose color, as he struggled to breathe… however, he was able to weakly utter three words: “Shut it… down… Now... before I get your ass fired....”
“Understood…” Spiegel said, then mumbled something and pulled out his switchboard. Before anybody could say anything, there was a THUD as Burstgirl fell to the ground, motionless. Even in this state, her face retained the same enraged expression she wore as she stood strangling the corrupt politician.
Everything fell silent then. All that could be heard was Hugo’s heavy breathing as he gasped for air. Blood was clearly visible, running down his face and out from his nose. And only one of his eyes remained open. Not one of them there felt pity for him. He definitely got what he deserved, but was it really worth it?
None of them could bring themselves to look at the lifeless form of Burstgirl. This mission really was a waste after all. They all knew the government was better off without a man like Senator Hugo Jorgunsson high up in the ranks, and the fact that they had to lose a dear friend in the process? And over a single, stupid maneuver like that? Turboman was at a loss for words. The fact that he lost Freezeman weighed heavily enough on his conscience, but now another one of his faithful friends and teammates? And furthermore, the fact that this was due to a ridiculous government regulation made the loss all the more painful and regrettable…
Time passed, the group remaining ever silent, wrapped up in sorrow, disgust and despair as the sun set over Bergen, Norway. As soon as the sun was gone, a squad of RPD patrol cars arrived on the scene. Out of one of the cars, alongside a small group of robot troopers, stepped a human policeman, who then rushed out to meet up with Hugo. “Mr. Jorgunsson! I’m glad to see you are safe.” The man said as he approached the senator. Hugo, although standing, obviously wasn’t in very good shape, as he still didn’t say a word. “He’s a bit shaken up by the whole ordeal,” Spiegel informed the officer. The officer then thanked the RPD team, before escorting Hugo off and into one of the cars.
“I guess we should get going now as well,” Makenshi brought up after the last remaining patrol car had left. Solemnly, Turboman bent over in front of Burstgirl. He placed his hands under her body, and prepared to lift her up, only to be caught off guard when she spoke: “hands off.”
“YOU’RE ALIVE?! But… but…”
A wave of surprise swept the team, followed by relief. All the while, Spiegel only chuckled to himself, his melancholy spirit lifted by seeing the senator get a beating and the trick that he had pulled.
“Heh heh, I guess I should have opened the communications to all of you, but while I was mumbling I told her to play dead. I’m only going to let it slide this once,” the Watcher said. “Because quite frankly, I couldn’t stand that man either. He was such a pompous, ungrateful little bastard, and an all-round asshole to boot. Especially so for one of his stature.”
"So what was that button you pressed?" Makenshi inquired
"Oh, I just turned the safety lock off and then back on. Hugo was too stupid to realize that's what I did."
Burst let out a laugh. “Heh, thank you so much, Cap’n! To think I’d get off from a total shutdown, especially after what I did to that buffoon… you know, I doubt he’ll ever be able to see out of that one eye ever again… mwahaha!” Joyous laughter filled the air.
“Indeed,” said Spiegel. “But be warned: while today was an exception, I won’t be doing this ever again. So next time, please think before you act. Common sense here.” Burst nodded in understanding. “Same goes for the rest of you as well!” Announced Spiegel to the rest of the DM. “Awwww…” Cloudman groaned.
It seemed there were decent people among the RPD Watchers after all.
RPD - Rescue the politician! (Complete)
SA - Destroy the city! (Failed)
Wily - Investigate unusual robot activity (Complete)