Series 9 Issue #7 - Time After Time Part 1

The recent past, before the Mechs were forced underground...

Tuesday begins as it always does at RPD HQ. With Ben getting in his weekly fight with St. Diveman; this time smashing the (seemingly) pious sub-mariner though the wall and cutting a swath of destruction through department’s offices.

Hardman: How you like that you bleepin’ Jesus freak?

Diveman: Ah, you hit like my grandma, you bleedin’ heretic!

Hardman: Oh that tears it! (Launches a Hard Knuckle that punches a hole through the side of the building.) 

Meanwhile, the Mechs watch St. Diveman from a safe distance.

Geminiman: You know we really should intervene before those two demolish the entire building.

Topman: Isn’t that the Sheriff’s job?

Geminiman: I haven’t seen him all day. 

Elsewhere, in one of the RPD’s many supply closets, the one with the knob broken off.

Magnetman: (Knocking on the door) Hello? Boss? Top? That damn fox trapped me in here and I think the door is jammed. Can you help a padre out?

???: Why hello there...

Magnetman: (Turns around to see he is trapped inside with an officer who suspiciously looks like "Weird" Al Yankovic) Who in hellfire and damnation are you?

???: You can call me Alfred. Now put on this wig! Your name will be "Vanna White" from now on. 

Magnetman: And why would I do that, you creepy little cuss?

Alfred: Because we’re going to be in here for a looooooong time and it’s been a long time since I "bought a vowel" from anyone.

Magnetman: Oh crap...

Back to the royal rumble unfolding elsewhere in the building...

Hardman: There is no god, you delusional head-case! 

Diveman: Blasphemy! The Lord will smite you for this!

Hardman: Oh believe me, better beings than Him have tried! You wanna know what death was like for me? A black and empty void! (Hit in the face with a Dive Missile) GAH! You cheap sonova-

Diveman: Sez you! I have seen Hell and eternal perdition!

Hardman: Yeah? Where? At the bottom of a vodka bottle?!

(Needlegal and Geminiman restrain Hardman before he can retaliate.)

Needlegal: Stand down, Ben! Before Crorq hears...

(The doors to Crorq’s office fly open and the gluttonous supercomputer surveys the destruction. Every one of his monitors displays an angry emoticon.)

Topman: Oops. Too late!

Crorq: What is the meaning of this unauthorized fracas?! Who is responsible?

Hardman and Diveman: (Point to each other) He is. 

Crorq: You are dismissed, Diveman. 

Hardman: I would incredulously yell "WHAT?" but that would mean I would be surprised.

Diveman: HA! See ya around Tubby! (Leaves)

Hardman: (Growls) 

Crorq: (Shifts his optics towards Ben) As for you. You just earned yourself a week’s suspension and I’m taking the damages out of your paycheck.

Hardman: Funny. You haven’t paid me in a month.

Crorq: And it looks you won’t be paid for the rest of the year. (Turns around and stomps back into his office) SHAKEMAN! Where’s my wig?! (Slams the door behind him.)

Geminiman: You need to keep that temper of yours under control.

Hardman: (Growls)

Needlegal: He’s right. You know Cossack’s Comrades rankle you even more if you react to their taunting.

Hardman: (...)

Needlegal: What?

Hardman: Nothing. I’m getting bloody sick of those idiots.

(Shadowman walks in on the group.)

Shadowman: Hey, guys? Have you seen a Sheriff anywhere?

Needlegal: Can’t say I have. 

Hardman: I’m sure he’s... around.

Shadowman: Well, I hope he didn’t run into Alfred. He’s back from his latest suspension.

Topman: The perverted creep from the "Missing Hamsters Department?" 

Geminiman: Oh lord, he once tried to force me to wear a blonde wig and...

(A familiar warping sound echoes throughout the room and Quint’s time machine appears before them. )

Shadowman: God, not this guy!

(Quint steps out from his machine, appearing with several dents and scorch marks on his armor. He staggers towards the Mechs, barely able to stand up.)

Quint: Maniacs! The multiverse... needs your help... heroes from a dozen worlds...

Shadowman: Oh no! Not this nonsense again! I remember how you screwed us over last time!

Quint: But...

Needlegal: No ifs, buts, or coconuts! We’re not playing your sick little game this time!

Quint: ...the multiverse... if Mother Brain’s Alliance of Evil wins...

(Hardman eyes a passing Toadman and snatches him.)

Toadman: Let go of me, you lummox!

Hardman: I have a solution for you, Seamus O’Quinty. I’m sure Cossack’s boys will be more than willing to help you out.  

Toadman: What?

Quint: A capital idea! (Takes Toadman by the wrist) Come along, Frogman! The Captain and his army await!

Toadman: It’s TOADman and what about my team?

Quint: (Shoves him in the time machine) We’ll use my time machine to assemble them. Onward... to ADVENTURE!

(Quint slams the door to his time machine and it begins to warp out of normal space-time.)

Geminiman: Good riddance, though I wonder what he meant when he said the multiverse needs our help. 

Needlegal: Do we really want to know? It wouldn’t have been a picnic for us and Quint probably would’ve screwed us over yet again. 

(Princess passes by the group and roughly shoves Shadowman.)

Princess: Out of my way, Gamma’s Disciples.

Shadowman: Well, excuuuuuuuuse me, Princess! And for the last time it’s the MECHANICAL MANIACS!

Princess: Whatever. I have important matters to attend to. (Walks off, leaving a simmering Shadowman behind.)

Topman: Well, that was... pointless. So what if Cossack’s Comrades screw up this mission? 

Hardman: Who cares? It’s not our problem anymore.

(The work day ends and Hardman lumbers towards his quarters, appearing rather dour until he crosses paths with Spark Chan and his expression turns to one of sadness.)

Spark Chan: Good evening, Ben-sama. 

Hardman: (...) 

Spark Chan: That bad, huh? 

Hardman: It seems like every day is a "bad" one, Class. Between Crorq’s overbearing ego, the Galactic Council, and the Cossacks’ jackassery.

Spark Chan: Oh, Ben-sama. You can’t let them get you down. You still have the team. That’s something, right? 

Hardman: You and G are my only friends on the "team." Needlegal’s all right, I guess. Gemini’s an arrogant jerk. Don’t really know the other guys and don’t get me started on Maggie May. 

Spark Chan: The Sheriff? He’s not quite a gentleman but I think he has some roguish charm...

Hardman: To you maybe, but the guy’s a freakin’ psychopath. I liked things better before all this RPD crap. Before "the War." (Sighs) Look... Class. I’m beat. Mind if we continue this conversation tomorrow?

Spark Chan: (Pats him on the back) Sure thing, Ben-sama. Sweet dreams. 

Hardman: Yeah, sure. 

(Hardman enters his mostly vacant chamber, save for a table cluttered with discarded components and overdue library books, a chair, and a recharging alcove. He disengages his armor and steps into the alcove. Grumbling to himself, he plugs in some cables before leaning back slightly and whispers before going to "standby" mode.)

Hardman: Sweet dreams, Benno. 

(Hardman-or rather, Ben (in his civilian identity) "sleeps" without any problems. However, when he wakes up to a rather annoying buzzing noise, only to find himself lying out on a comfortable bed complete with fluffy pillow. His originally Spartan quarters was now considerably larger, and filled with bookshelves lined with comic books and DVD sets...)

Ben: Oh... kay... definitely not in Kansas or any other medium-sized state. (Gets up) The digs are familiar though. Better armor up if I can and figure out where I went. 

(Ben armors up in a flash of reddish-orange light-only to find himself wearing the Transmetal armor of his former identity, Fireman.)


(Ben kicks down the door and runs down the ornately decorated hallway. )

Fireman: Huh? This looks like the old mansion, but the place is supposed to be a dilapidated wreck...

(After racing down the stairs, Fireman stops in the foyer, gawking at the mural on the ceiling in disbelief. )

Fireman: For the love of-I remember that mural. How much did we pay that ninja turtle to finger-paint it? (Feels someone tap him on the shoulder) Eh? 

(Fireman turned around only to get a pie in his face. )

Fireman: ACK! 

???: (Cackling like a madman) HAHAHA! Got you again! Better work on your reflexes.

(Fireman wipes the pie away from his face, and spits the rest out. His eyes widen to size of dinner plates when he sees a painfully familiar robot dressed in a blue parka. )

Iceman: What’s the matter, Benno? Looks like you saw Thirteen Ghosts with Shannon Elizabeth.

Fireman: Gary? Wait, you’re supposed to be dead!

Iceman: Are you okay, Ben? (Slowly approaches him) Is the Muffin Man bothering you again?

Fireman: (Retracts his hand into his forearm and points the cannon at him) STAY BACK! This has to be a bad dream... or Mesmerman’s work somehow.

Iceman: (Jumps back) Wait, Mesmerman? Who’s Mesmerman? 

Cut Chan: (Coming down from the stairs) What’s with all the shouting? I’ve got a Wookieepedia to edit. 

Gutsman: (Enters through the living room) Geez, are we having another episode again?

Fireman: Erik? Britt? No, no, no. This is impossible! The Sinister Six disbanded years ago! 

Cut Chan: Wait. What is he talking about? We’re still here. 

Iceman: (Visibly shaken) I dunno, Cuts. He’s not making any sense. 

Gutsman: (Warily approaches Fireman) Okay, Ben, just calm down. We’re here to...

Fireman: DON’T TOUCH ME! You’re all supposed to be gone! 

(Bombman and Elecman enter the foyer) 

Bombman: Oh, great. Ben’s gone psycho again.

Cut Chan: That’s not helping! 

Fireman: You’re all fakes! Somebody’s trying to screw with me... ARGH! 

(Fireman shifts his other arm to cannon mode and unleashes the full power of his Fire Storm attack. The Six scatter as it consumes everything in its path and scorches the (thankfully) fireproofed walls. )

Iceman: (Drops to the floor) Good thing we robots don’t need to worry about asbestos. 

Elecman: You know you can stop him with your Ice Slasher, right?

Iceman: Oh. Yeah. (Jumps back to his feet) Sorry about having to do this, Benno. 

(Iceman fires off an Ice Slasher, but Fireman ducks and rolls out of the way. Fireman then pivots on his ankle and makes a break for the door only to come face to face with an old tormentor.)

Muffin Man: Ooga Booga! 

(Oddly enough, the rest of the Six can see him too. )

The Six: o_o: 

Elecman: Wait. The Muffin Man is REAL? 

Bombman: I guess we’re all psychos now. 

Gutsman: ENOUGH! Both of you!

Fireman: (...) I don’t have time for this shit. 

(Fireman shoves his left cannon into the Muffin Man’s maw and turns up his Fire Storm to max. The malevolent pastry lets out an agonizing shriek as it burns alive from the inside.)

Iceman: Sweet Mecha Death Christ! (2000 BC version 4.0 Beta.)

(...and somewhere in New Jersey, a nerd with rage issues sneezes. They watch in horror as the Muffin Man turns to ash and a frenzied Fireman bolts out the front door. )

Gutsman: Good lord. I think we’re going to need some help with this one.

Cut Chan: Something wrong, Gary?

Iceman: (...) I dunno. When Ben told me that I was supposed to be dead, I think he actually MEANT it.

(Oilman and Timegal walk in completely oblivious to the damage wrought by Fireman’s rampage. )

Oilman: Hey guys! Did we miss anything? 

Timegal: We were out getting a snack. 

Gutsman: (Sigh)

Elecman: Y’know, we may need to change our name. "Sinister Six, Plus Two" ain’t cutting it.

(Meanwhile, Fireman sprints down the street without paying much heed to his surroundings as he keeps running, and running, and running until he is deep within Megalopolis. He stops to notice that the city looks much bright and cleaner. )

Fireman: Geez, the Six-l mean, we must’ve really cleaned this joint up. Ugh! What am I thinking? This is all wrong! Either this is Mesmerman’s work or somebody really screwed up time...

(A passing Officer Bot mk 2 tips his hat to Fireman.) 

Officer Bot: (In an insultingly stereotypical Irish accent) Top o’ the mornin' to ye, Fireman!

Fireman: Uh, thanks. Well things probably couldn’t get any worse today. 

(A nearby explosion rocks the entire block...)

Super Chaos: Cower in fear mortals for it is I, Super Chaos! 

Fireman: I’m still on the fence on whether this qualifies as "worse" or not. What do ya want, SC?

Super Chaos: Fireman? (Blinks in confusion) Where are the rest of the Six... plus two? 

Fireman: Getting their pedicures. What do you think? 

Super Chaos: (Sigh) It’s not as fun without the whole team. I came up of with this ingenious plan to humiliate you and everything. 

Fireman: Humiliate us? 

Super Chaos: I invented this remote that can override your inhibition and freewill programming, and force you to dance to the Macarena. I was hoping it would go viral on YouTube.

Fireman: HOLD IT! (Rubs temples) Let me tell you what is utterly stupid about that plan. One: it is decades out of date. No one in their right minds would use that stupid song as a weapon. Two: force us to dance? Really? That’s the best way you could think to humiliate us? Three: I’m betting that remote could send me to any of the butt-ton of worlds within the television-based pocket universe you control. Except you’d be ripping off that old "Teen Titans" cartoon.

Super Chaos: (A tear streaks from his only eye) You didn’t have to be so mean about it. (A fireball hits him square in the eye) OW!

(Fireman turns around to see the "other" Sinister Six, lead by Torchman, standing in some rather-ludicrous poses. Sharkman having wrapped his legs behind his neck while standing on his hands. Everyone gathered hears a loud "SNAP!" )

Sharkman: My spine! WTF!?

Torchman: Never fear, citizens! The REAL Sinister Six is here to defeat Super Chaos once more.

Fireman: (Rolls eyes) "Once more?" You guys couldn’t even beat his hillbilly cousin. (To Super Chaos) No offense.

Super Chaos: None taken.

Torchman: We have beaten him hundreds of times. YOU are the impostors who steal the credit that is rightfully ours! Sinister Six, att- (Tackled to the ground by Fireman.)

Fireman: Do not ever call yourselves that! (Starts pummeling him) You are a freaking disgrace!

(Torchman catches his fist with one hand and struggles to push him off with the other.)

Torchman: Unhand me, you psycho!

Fireman: Psycho? YOU HAVEN’T SEEN PSYCHO! (Headbutts him in the face.)

Torchman: Gah! 

Bitman: Uh, shouldn’t we be helping our fearless leader?

Oilman: Wait. Let's see how this plays out.

(Fireman twists Torchman’s hand until the servos in his carpus snap, then resumes his savage beating with his other hand-badly denting Torchman’s faceplate. Torchman howls out in pain and tries kicking him in the side but Fireman scarcely notices.)

Fireman: You morons took our name! You destroyed our reputation! I’m gonna kill you for that! 

(Fireman clasps both hands around Torchman’s head and squeezes as hard as his rage will allow. Torchman vainly tries to push him off with his only functional arm.)

Torchman: You .. you're crazy!

Fireman: So I've been told.

Blademan: He's gonna kill him!

Torchman: If you kill me, I'll return even more powerful than before.

Super Chaos: Oh dear. When did things become so violent? 

Fireman: Someone shoulda done this a long time ago.

(Just when it appears that he is about to crush Torchman’s skull, a Hard Knuckle flies out from seemingly nowhere and hits Fireman right in the face. The force knocks him off of Torchman and renders him unconscious. Super Chaos and the faux-Sinister Six turn their attention to the new arrivals. )

Super Chaos: I believe now would be a good time to bid a hasty retreat. (Leaves before any notice him.)

Shadowman: Ha ha! You have bad aim, me am not happy at all. 

Hardman: Hnnnnn!

Topman: When is that "Bizzaro Virus" going to wear off again? His mannerisms are beginning to grate on me.

Needlegal: Enough, Lennon! It’ll wear off when it wears off. 

Geminiman: At least we found Fireman. (Examines Torchman) And wow, he really went over the edge there.

Magnetman: (Dressed like an antebellum Southern aristocrat) Ah say! That boy’s crazier than cat in a henhouse. 

Topman: What is that even supposed to mean?

Geminiman: I think he may mean "crazier than a long-tailed cat in room full of rocking chairs." It’s a rather succinct way of describing Ben’s latest episode. 

Spark Chan: Oh, poor Ben-Sama.

Snakeman: Poor Ben? Look what he did to Torchman! 

Torchman: I had him right where I wanted him!

Magnetman: He sure ain’t going to be pretty no more. Ah can say that.

Shadowman: We am not going to get him help he needs. Let’s stay here forever.

Topman: And what about Super Chaos? 

Needlegal: Ah, let him go. It looks like he abandoned his plans for the day. 

Blademan: Hey! What about us?!

Needlegal: What about you?

Blademan: Aren't we going to fight or something?!

Needlegal: I think you need to take Torchman to a hospital... (Looks to Sharkman, who is still contorted like a robot pretzel) and that... is not natural. Hardman?

Hardman: Hnnnn?

Needlegal: Pick Ben up. I know where we’re taking him. 

(Several hours pass and Ben finally reboots. His optic sensors flicker for a moment but then he finds himself in a padded and fireproofed room. He tries to lift his arm but finds it and his other limbs shackled to a ceramic titanium bed. )

Fireman: Huh? The hell? (Struggles and squirms) Where the @#%$ am I?!

???: Ah, you’re awake. Welcome to the Sunny Meadows Home for Disturbed Robots, Fireman, I was anticipating your arrival.

Fireman: That voice. Crorq? 

(Crorq, in his original (MMPC) body steps out from the shadows wearing a pair of glasses and holding a notepad with pen in his spindly hands.)

Dr. Crorq: Correction. It is "Doctor Crorq" as I have earned my doctorates in both psychology and robotic engineering. I trust you are comfortable?

Fireman: Well, the padding is rather soft-waitaminute. Why would you give a damn about my comfort?

Dr. Crorq: I am the Director of this institution. My primary concern is the welfare of all my patients.

Fireman: Like hell it is! You’re the chief of the Robot Police Department. You’re an obnoxious, power-hungry, and loud fatass whose sole purpose is to make everyone’s life, especially mine, miserable. 

Dr. Crorq: (Scribbling notes down on his pad) Mmm-hmm. Please continue. 

Fireman: I don’t know what sick mind games you are playing but this is gonna stop now!

Dr. Crorq: I do not know what you are implying. 

Fireman: Bullsh-The Sinister Six disbanded years ago after "Fireman" and Iceman died. Either this is one of your twisted games...or...someone messed with the space-time continuum to change the past... 

Dr. Crorq: (Scribbles) Hmm. How and why would someone change the past?

Fireman: I don’t know. A Genesis Wave generator, maybe? 

Dr. Crorq: A Genesis Wave generator?

Fireman: A device designed to warp time and space. Dr. Wily used one when he teamed up with Dr. Eggman on one of their "take over the world" attempts decades ago. Except Megaman and that spiny blue rat changed things back to the way they were.

Dr. Crorq: Of course. I assume this account is verifiable.

Fireman: That’s the thing with "reboots." Nobody remembers them. 

Dr. Crorq: But you clearly do.

Fireman: You read my history, right?

Dr. Crorq: Oh, yes. You claim to have come from the future where you were Magma Dragoon until Iceman Red destroyed your timeline. An extradimensional being named "Nth" plucked you out of time and placed you in the body of Heatman and then your consciousness was copied-

Fireman: Just stop. You’re giving me a headache. I freaking hate time travel now. 

Dr. Crorq: Well, this session has been enlightening but I have other appointments to keep. (The door to the room slides open) I look forward to seeing you next time, Fireman.

Fireman: Yeah, just peachy.

(Dr. Crorq heads to the waiting area where a select few from the Sinister Six and the Mechs have assembled.)

Iceman: So what’s the prognosis, Doc? 

Shadowman: Am Fireman not going be all wrong?

Dr. Crorq: I am afraid his psychosis is worsening. He claims that someone altered the past and that our reality is not the "real" one. After he lashed out against Torchman, I fear that he is becoming a danger to himself and others. If conventional cognitive therapies will not work, I may have to take more drastic measures. 

Gutsman: What are you trying to say, Doctor? 

Dr. Crorq: If Fireman’s condition does not improve, I will have no other recourse but to completely reformat his memory.

Iceman: Reformat it?! You’re talking about erasing everything that makes Ben Ben.

Gutsman: I’m afraid that’s not an option, Dr. Crorq.

Dr. Crorq: Well, the only other viable option is for him to remain in my care long term. I have little doubt that the Mayor’s Office and Robot Defense Force will not object to either after the collateral damage he has caused during his episodes. Anyway, I have some paperwork to do. Let me know when you decide. (Walks off)

Shadowman: Oh boy! That am sound great!

Needlegal: Well, it looks like there is no other way, Erik.

Topman: Personally, I think the Sinister Six...

Timegirl: Plus Two.

Oilman: Yeah, don’t forget about us!

Topman: Whatever... Plus Two would be more effective without Fireman ranting about the Muffin Man.

Needlegal: Shut up, Lennon!

Gutsman: (Sigh) Why did I let them come? (A light on Gutsman’s forearm begins to blink) Looks like the Mayor’s office is calling. 

(A holographic projector in Gutsman’s arm opens up to show Dr. Light sitting behind a desk.)

Dr. Light: Good morning, Agent P-I mean, Sinister Six. Looks like a strange craft of some kind crashed into downtown Megalopolis. We don’t know what it is, but we expect it to be up to no good. 

Gutsman: Gotcha. (To Needlegal) Feel like a team-up?

Needlegal: Sure. Weird alien craft? Sounds like fun.

Iceman: Ah, count me out, guys.

Gutsman: What?

Shadowman: Me am going as well. 

Needlegal: Why not? 

Iceman: I want to talk to Ben. All of this sounds fishy. 

Gutsman: (Shrugs) Suit yourself. Sinister Six, UNITE!

(The Sinister Six and Mechanical Maniacs teleport out of the hospital and leave Iceman behind with Shadowman.)

Iceman: Well, before we go see Ben. (Pulls out his mallet and knocks Shadowman upside the head with it) Gotta beat the Bizarro out of you first.

Shadowman: Gah! Thanks! I thought I would never get rid of that last bit of code.

Iceman: Don’t mention it. Now, let’s go pay a visit to ol’ Flamebrain. 

(One orderly bearing a nametag that reads "Shakeman" escorts the two to Fireman’s look.)

Shakeman: Here we are. I will be outside if you need me. 

Iceman: Sure thing. (Closes the door behind them) Hey, Benno! How are things? 

Fireman: Beginning to wonder if I belong in here. 

Iceman: Why’s that? 

Fireman: Because either I am freaking nuts or the rest of the world is.

Iceman: Well, if it’s any consolation, I don’t think you’re nuts. Do you, G?

Shadowman: Not at all-- Dr. Crorq told us that you believed that somebody altered the past and changed the timeline. Doesn’t sound too far-fetched considering the Mechs' encounter with Extant in the past. 

Iceman: But one thing freaks me out. You said that I was supposed to dead. Is it true?

Fireman: (...) Yeah, you are. Sorry, Gary. 

(A long and awkward pause follows. Neither Fireman, nor Iceman can look each other in the eye and even Shadowman is downright speechless.)

Iceman: (Breathes in deeply) So what happened?

Fireman: It happened so fast. I wasn’t there for most of it because I died at the start of it... well... the "Fireman" persona. Heatman was still around. God, it’s so confusing. Everything went to hell so quickly. 

Iceman: (Visibly tenses up) Went to hell? What do you mean?

Fireman: I hit a low point. My "brother" was dead. My son was dead. My best friend was dead and then came the war.

Shadowman: War!?

Fireman: General Cutman reappeared -- and this time with an army. They overran most of the world, destroyed hundreds of cities, and slaughtered thousands by the time everything was said and done. I saw this as a chance to die in a blaze of glory but it didn’t work out that way. I survived, but barely. The General rebuilt me into a weapon. He turned me into a plutonium addict and forced me to attack Classi and kill a bunch of refugees. 

Shadowman: Holy-

Iceman: I think I’m going to be sick. 

Fireman: I remember my last mission as part of the Scissor Army. They sent me to destroy Dr. Wily’s space fortress and I remember getting hopped up on plutonium to the point where I saw myself as the freaking Angel of Death. I got in a fight with the old man and became Magma Dragoon again; after that, I exploded, but I didn’t die. Not instantly, I drifted off into space before everything went dark. 

Shadowman: And does it end there? 

Fireman: (Frowns) No. Crorq was not some head shrink in my timeline. He was the chief of the Robot Police Department and a first-class glutton and jerk. He retrieved my body from space, merged my Fireman and Heatman programs into a unified personality, and revived me as Hardman.

Iceman: So that means you were a member of the X-Force, the Sinister Six, AND the Mechanical Maniacs? Impressive. 

Shadowman: If that’s the case, why would Crorq go to the trouble to bring you back? 

Fireman: Because he wanted my knowledge on the future events and technology, which was jack squat. Then he paired me up with a psychopath that loves nothing more than to warp my insides with magnetic powers and make me look like a first-class screw up every chance he gets. It’s a nightmare that won’t end. 

Shadowman: So why stay?

Fireman: I don’t know. Maybe it’s because I have nowhere else to go, or maybe it’s because the Mechs were the only good thing in my life, the Sheriff notwithstanding. (Sighs) I pretty much failed at everything in my life as a hero, father, and friend, but when I was with the Six, I thought I had an honest chance being something more than a screw up. I honestly thought I could be a hero.

(Another awkward pause follows with Iceman and Shadowman glancing at each other.)

Fireman: Guys?

Iceman: (...) Let’s bust him out of here, G.

(Meanwhile, in Downtown Megalopolis, the Sinister Six and Mechanical Maniacs gather around a crater formed in the middle of the street. A cadre of mk. 2 Policebots cordoned off the area with onlookers gawking from the barricade.)

Gutsman: Okay, looks like some futuristic craft of some kind.

Topman: Clearly.

Timegirl: I’m kind of disappointed it's so small. 

Needlegal: So who wants to do the honor of greeting our future overlords? 

(Everyone looks to Gutsman.)

Gutsman: Seriously, guys? 

Bombman: Well, you are the strongest of us. No offense, Hardy.

Hardman: Nnnnnnnh!

Bombman: We need you to weaken the potential invader for us to finish the job. Your sacrifice will be remembered for all time.

Gutsman: (Grumbles, and slides down the crater) Lazy, good for nothing...

(Gutsman approaches the craft when the door flies open and a mortally wounded Quint staggers out and collapses onto the ground. Gutsman rushes to his side and picks him up.)

Gutsman: Guys! I need a medic. 

Quint: Too late... I’m finished...

(Needlegal and a few others from the Six and Mechs slide down the crater wall.)

Needlegal: Hey, isn’t that Quint, that bungling time cop?

Magnetman: Ah say! He’s seen better days. 

Quint: Listen... closely... there was a war... the palace fell... and evil won... Megaland in terrible danger...

(Quint’s body goes limp and his optics go black behind his cracked visor.)

Gutsman: He’s dead. 

Needlegal: What do you think he meant by that gibberish? 

(A warp zone opens up before them, and a deluge of enemies from parallel universes pours out. Among them are the Space Pirates from Metroid; Redz, Stegway, and BBats from Sonic the Hedgehog: and a few Kremlings from Donkey Kong Country.)

Space Pirate: Arrrr, looks like the scalawag found help.

Redz: Well, then let’s roast ‘em. 

Gutsman: Oh, it’s going to be THAT kind of day.



Classi Cal as .....
Spark Chan
Raijin as .....
Psycho Magnet as .....
Ben as .....
    Nightmare as .....
Lennon as .....
Sheriff (Kassidy) Mags as .....
Gauntlet as .....


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