The Business of War

Fall of Dusk

Scenario F
Wraithman (CC)(SA)
Wilys Warriors (W)

Location: Hong Kong, China
Max. Cossack Scrap Value: 2940
SA Infantry: 1273
RPD Units: 1002
Wily Bots: 853

Things were not going so smoothly. Correction; things were going horribly right now.

Sure, it was bad enough that the RPD decided to take back Hong Kong, and at least the SA was focused on them for the time being, giving Wily's forces some breathing room. The commanding officers, the six remaining members of Wily's Warriors, were glad for the temporary relief.

Then he showed up.

Wraithman, as the Warriors had found out, was no joke. Instead of dealing with the RPD like they had expected, he and his own gang of Joes had decided to pounce on the office building that Wily had made the HQ of his territory. Yet, despite the defenses in place, the reaper look-alike and his cohorts strolled in like they already owned the place.

So they decided to wait till he stepped through the door to unleash everything they got. Metools, Sniper Joes, Monkings and so on lunged at the intruders, the Warriors backing up with everything they could muster as well. Despite heavy losses, they managed to take down nearly all the Dark Joes that had accompanied Wraithman.

But he wasn't anywhere to be found.

It happened quickly. Darkness fell and Wily's robots began falling like flies exposed to the greatest of poisons. Starnik and the others didn't realize this, seeing as no sound was heard by their receptors. A brief drop of the dark cloak (on purpose, it seemed) told the Warriors they where in over their heads.

So they ran.

They didn't want to run. Running would only make Wily even angrier due to their actions a month ago. Plus it would make them look like cowards. But panic overcame pride and the Warriors abandoned their base, if only to figure out how to get out of there.

Escape wasn't a good looking solution right now. Both the RPD and the SA were fighting around the entire perimeter of the city, and unfortunately the teleporter beacons Wily has installed had been disabled beforehand. Through what little knowledge he had of their enemy, Starnik suspected Wraithman was to blame.

He and his team now huddled in an abandon factory, the sounds of battle from afar echoing through the hollow building. Things weren't looking good so far; a surprise encounter with some SA Joes gave them a bit of damage, but also gave time for Wraithman to catch up with them again. Metalman was got too close to him and lost an arm from the elbow down from his scythe. The wound burned too much for him, so Starnik had to remove the rest of the arm from the shoulder down to make the childish robot quite down. Again, the barely lost him and now hid where they were now.

What they needed now was a plan.

"This sucks," whispered Airman. "Why are we waiting around so that Halloween reject can get the drop on us? I can take him easily!"

Starnik shook his head. "Don't be a fool, 'Strike. I hate hiding out as much as you, but rushing in, guns blazing isn't going to do anything with that guy. We all know what happened with the Gila Gladiators; I, for one, don't want to be crucified."

"Same here," said Bubbleman. "That guy is nuts! How are we going to beat him?"

"Rushing him is still an option, you know." Everyone looked at Airman with annoyed looks. "What? It's worked for us before."

Darksage sighed and raised his hand. "You know, many of those times were because of dumb luck? And unfortunately, if this pass month is any indication... it's just about run out."

"...I miss Cyros," whined Naoshi. "Why'd Wily have to make him go with the Rescue Force? They're just big meanies. He should be with us, helping us fight." Starnik turned his head at the bladed robot and smiled grimly.

"Yeah, sucks doesn't it?" He laughed softly and hung his head. "When we rush in, he stays back and looks before he leaps." A moment passed as the scralet speedster went over his thoughts. "I wonder what he'd say right now?"

The wooden giant, Iga, uncrossed his giant arms and placed them by his sides. He looked at Starnik and said, "Probably something that might help us. He has good ideas at times like this."

"Oh really?" mused Airman. "Then explain that time he had as all hide from the police in a video game store, just so he could look at all that Pokémon merchandise?"

"...okay, most of time he does." At that moment, however, something clicked in Starnik's mind. Staring off in the distance for a few moments, he turned to his comrades and stated, "He's not the only one who gets us out of these situations."

"Yeah, we know, but Ben is-" Starnik waved off Darksage. "No, not Ben... although that was true. I'm talking about one of us."

Naoshi piped up at this. "You mean me?" Everyone glared at him. "Uh, nevermind."

Starnik smiled; this time, it was genuine. "Tell me guys, how do you take care of darkness."

"What is this, a trick question?" complained Airman. "Light, duh." Woodman sat up straight and asked, "What are you getting at, boss man?"

Getting up and sprinting quickly, Starnik leaned against a pile of crates with various Chinese writings. None of the Warriors had bothered to uploaded the appropriate language program, but when their leader opened one of the crates, they saw what he was getting at.

Darksage got up and walked over, looking inside. "Fireworks?" Starnik grinned and nodded, to which the explosives expert responded in kind. "Hey, yeah... I see what you're getting at."

"I dunno... there doesn't seem to be many crates left." Iga was right; aside from the few dozen they could see, there wasn't any indication of their being more fireworks boxes inside the entire warehouse. "What if we run out before we can actually harm him?"

Starnik frowned. Unfortunately, his large companion was right. The light from the fireworks may work for a while, but after they were all gone, Wraithman would have the advantage once again. If only...

He felt a tapping on his shoulder and turned to Darksage. The bomber pointed his arm to the nearby window and across a few abandoned lots. There, surrounded by an old chain link fence, was a used car lot.

The Scarlet Adonis' smirk returned. Maybe they could win this one after all...


The RPD had made a hole in the SA's defenses, trying to get to the human survivors before they could. Unfortunately, the unit that had made the breach had crossed paths with Wraithman and his Dark Joes. The leading RPD officer gave to order to fire, but it didn't quite matter anyway.

Wraith eased back as his cohorts took care of the deluded fools. He had other priorities, mainly the fleeing Wily commanders. They were disappointing, really. First they threw everything they had at him, then they just ran like sheep without a shepherd.

He thought back to similar encounters... Deep Impact, the Cosmic Gladiators, the Gila Gladiators... they all suffered the same flaw. They lacked intelligence. All their offensives against him involved brute force, and thus sowed the seeds of their defeat. From what he saw, the Warriors were no different. Little better than barbarians.

The last of the RPD unit had been destroyed when he returned from his thoughts. One of his Dark Joe strolled up and saluted. "Sir, we have taken care of the Unit. No other RPD forces detected nearby."

"Very well then," acknowledged Wraith. "Come. Let us return to our search for Wily's lapdogs. There is no threat from the RPD here."

Fate seemed to say otherwise as a duo of Special Forces units descended upon them. They appeared so quickly that two of the Dark Joes were crushed before they could fight back. Wraithman silently cursed himself for letting his mind wander too much and extended his field of darkness.

"Take care of them! We're behind schedule here..." Using his abilities Wraith blocked all sound coming from his Joes, effectively blinding the Special Forces group. The remaining soldiers fired upon them, slowly but surely wearing them down. But they were not as helpless as one would think; they fired their energy beams wildly, blasting apart those who were too close. Wraith saw as all but two of his Dark Joes were reduced to nothing. It was time to intervene.

Still cloaked by darkness, he rushed toward the nearest unit, soundlessly bringing his scythe up across it's chest. The sightless void did the rest, burning into the wound and causing the systems inside to fail one by one. Another slash appeared and magnified the effect, while a third stabbed the Officer inside, shutting him done for good.

The remaining unit fired it's weapons at it's partner's last location, either by chance or if it somehow knew of it's demise. Wraithman avoided the brunt of the attack, but sported a few singes on his armor. He teleported behind the assailant and dug his weapon deep into the power pack, sending a power surged throughout the armor. The pilot inside was fired by the run away, distracting him from his current predicament. Wraith finished him off as he did the first.

Dispelling his Darkness he sauntered over to this two remaining Dark Joes. They were damaged, but functional. He took a scan over the remains of the rest with zero emotion. "Status," he ordered from the nearest Joe.

"This soldier unit is at 76 percent efficiency and suffers from various armor breaches. Fellow unit is at 68 percent efficiency and has damaged it's optic sensors."

Wraithman stood still and thought over this information. He came to a decision. "Gather whatever useful from your fallen comrades and return to Elysium for further repairs. I will continue my hunt for the Wily robots." Both Joes acknowledged the order and went about their task. Wraith turned and rubbed the minor wounds received from the energy blast. Noticeable, but not hindering at the least.

He adjust his cloak and resumed his search for the Warriors without delay.


Not much time passed as the image of Death made his way down the deserted streets of Hong Kong. Wraith little evidence to show that the Warriors had come this way, but he had a small feeling that they were here... somewhere.

Movement in the distance. He stopped his march and scanned more clearly. Yes... he had found one of them. Metalman, the one he had injured beforehand. The armless bot (Wraith sworn he had only taken off his lower arm) shuffled through the streets, lost. At least that's what it seemed like.

Either this coward is either a fool, Wraith mused, ...or he is up to something. Slowly, he approached the wandering bot, curious at his behavior.

He was about twenty meters away when Naoshi turned his head and spotted him. He yelped in fear and started running straight down the road. It didn't quite matter to Wraith... All he's doing to delaying the inevitable... but the others might be waiting... in fact...

He ceased his musing and let his Darkness come forth. It quickly spread over everything, overcoming the fleeing Metalman. He didn't even change direction, he kept going forward, toward the edge of the darkness. Wraith had to give him credit, it was the best way out of his little trap.

Unfortunately for him, they were obviously unaware just what he could do within his void of creation.

Just before Naoshi could breach the edge of the Darkness, he suddenly hit something hard and fell backward. He rubbed his head with his remaining hand, wondering what he had hit. Gazing upward, he saw nothing at first... but then Wraithman allowed himself to be seen and gazed at the smaller robot.

"It seems that this lone sheep has strayed away from the herd." The grim reaper look alike took hold of his scythe and held it in his hands. "Tell me, little lamb, where are your friends? Have they abandoned you? Or are they up to something? A trap, perhaps?"

Wraith could see the fear in Naoshi's eyes. Fear... a human trait, emulated by a creation of man. It was both amusing and insulting at the same time. Not that it mattered to him, much. Besides, those in fear tended to do very foolish things.

"If your silence is meant to prolong your wretched existence..." droned Wraithman, "then perhaps I should cut the chatter and do what I must." He had been ready to strike for sometime, anyway. His hesitance was only because he had no idea where the other Warriors where. Nor had he any idea what they were up to.

But whatever it was, it was starting to smell a lot like a trap...

A noise came! Along with a bright light! It passed right by Wraithman's vision and he recoiled from it. A ways off, he heard a small explosion which emitted a colorful flash of brightness. It didn't take long to figure out what it was.


Several more of the miniature rockets began to whiz through his field of Darkness. While not damaging Wraith directly, it did provide a proper distraction for Metalman to make his way out of the abyss. His presence was still felt by Wraithman, though, and he prepared to cut off his root of escape.

Then a new presence was felt nearby... too close!

Something fast and heavy slammed into Wraithman, knocking him down, but not out. In retaliation he swung his scythe at his foe, which turned out to be the hefty frame of Airman. Due to his awkward position, Wraith missed his target by just a few centimeters.

"Hah! Missed me, you Halloween reject!" The so-called reject narrowed his eyes at the insult. This ingrate was obviously not taking him seriously. Wraithman returned to his feet, only for a stray bottle rocket to fly right into his shoulder and exploding. He grunted more in annoyance than pain; Airman saw the event due to the light and laughed.

Returning to his feet once more, he looked clearly at his flying foe. "Your laughter does nothing but distract you from the unseen threat!" Wraithman leaped at Airman and swung down, unheard, but barely seen thanks to the fireworks. The flying fan dodged sideways, the edge of the blade making just a shallow nick in his side. But it was enough, for the darkness began to seep in. Instead of acknowledging the pain, Airman yelled, "Hey, you scratched my paint job, creepy!"

An arrogant fool he is. Wraith meet with the ground once again and saw his prey making a beeline toward the darkness's edge. The was also a brief pause in the fireworks; perhaps they had just run out? How... unfortunate for them.

Another presence came to his senses. This one was fast! It rushed by him without as much as a nick. Obviously it was no attack, just something to get his attention. Instead, Wraithman made his way toward the direction from which the fireworks had come from.

He was surprised when another volley was fired, right at him! The shots were full of gaps and he easily ducked them all. But at the same time, the quick movements of Quickman were felt again... only this time, the light from the rockets gave him what he needed to aim and fire his several of his boomerangs. They shredded through Wraithman's cloak and into the armor of his back. This time, he felt the smallest amount of pain.

Very clever... He ignored his injuries and instead teleported to the furthest edge of his darkness, then dispelled it. Behind him, Quickman shouted to his teammates, "Iga, Akutare! Fire 'em over there!" A barrage of fire works, both high and low were fired, lighting up Wraithman's location.

He now saw the entire flock; Quickman, Airman, Woodman, Metalman, and Bubbleman. The wooden giant and the scuba diver continued lighting their projectiles at him, while the remaining three started their own assault. It seemed they were returning back to brute force, just with the addition with a limited supply of fireworks.

Yet there is one still missing... He sensed something approaching and ran into a nearby alleyway. Jumping onto a wall, he kicked off just as a pair of Crash Bombs hit where he was previously. Wraith repeated the maneuver several more times until he reached the roof, and a battle ready Crashman.

The orange bomber grinned at his opponent. "How you like the show so far, tall, dark and gruesome?" Wraithman winced at a particularly bright flash from a firework blast and glared at his would be assailant.

"I must admit, a bit clever, but hardly genius." He rushed forward, surprising Crashman and delivering a horizontal slice. It connected, but Crash was able to avoid a serious injury, only having a centimeter of his armor cut open and his control crystal shattered. "Hey, I liked that crystal, you jerk!" Wraith shook his head and leaped toward his prey once more.

The sound of a large boomerang adverted his attention, to which is turned and knocked away with his scythe. In mid leap, Quickman caught it and landed, pointing it at his foe. "Nice reflexes. Or maybe it was luck."

"'Luck?'" For some reason, Wraith couldn't help but give a soft, morbid chuckle. "Perhaps you are right. The question is, however, is it on your side?"

Once again the darkness spread out from Wraithman, covering the entire rooftop. Darksage had leap down earlier, but the range still hit him and it burned his wound. He groaned and tried to feel for help, but he could see nothing.

His cries were heard by Starnik, but thanks to Wraithman he could not see it's source. And the same robot made them seemingly emit from every direction. Silently hoping Crash would be alright, the speedster turned to where he last saw Wraithman, only to find nothing.

I could really use some light right about now- Instinct told him to duck, so he did. Wraithman's scythe went right over his head. The specter was impressed by the fact that he dodge the attack... perhaps Quickman had senses he was not aware off?

One last barrage of fireworks penetrated the darkness, giving Starnik a brief glimpse at the edge of the roof. He made a beeline for it and jumped over before Wraith could react. Getting slightly frustrated, the ghastly machine dispelled his darkness and made his way over the edge as well. Airman was waiting for him, arm cannon prepared and ready.

"Surprise!" A torrent of air blew into Wraithman, sending him back onto the roof. He landed hard, and on his previous back wounds as well. As the flying fan appeared over the edge of the roof, Wraith made a quick judgment and try his scythe at him.

Airman cried out in both surprise and pain. The blade had lodge itself straight through his left shoulder, effectively disabling his Air Shooter and faltering his flying abilities. "What the hell man? That hurt!" Wraith didn't listen and instead leaped at him, grabbing hold of his scythe and ripping it out. Various fluids and a torrent of spark erupted from the wound, accompanied by a cry of pain from Airman. Wraith held his weapon up high, preparing for a fatal strike.

"Oh screw this!" Airman spun upside down, throwing his attacker over him and back toward the ground. Wraithman was prepared, however, and gracefully landed upright. He looked upward to see his wounded adversary making haste toward another cluster of buildings, yelling, "This is in no way awesome at all!"

Wraith scanned the area once more; no sign of the others. From the Warrior's use of fireworks, however, he figured it was only a matter of time before his SA troops would show up to investigate. He looked into the empty crates and was amused at their emptiness.

"As I said, dear Warriors, a clever ruse, but you have used up your trump card..." He swiftly began running to where he saw Airman fly off to. "...or have you?"


Iga looked at Shadowstrike and grimaced at his wound. "Okay, that really looks painful."

"Gee, yah think?" He moaned a bit and looked at Starnik. "I see what you were talking about now. That guy's no joke."

Starnik smiled, but only briefly. "He's not dead yet. We have to move, now." The Warriors nodded and ran down the alleyways to their destination.

The trail of coolant from Airman's wound left a brilliant trail for Wraithman to follow. But he withheld his powers for the moment, waiting until he could stop the Warriors before moving in for the finale. It was amusing that these cretins gave him a good fight, even exploiting his weakness to flashes of light. But alas, everything must come to an end. The Scissor Army would have this city and no one else. All potential threats must either be brought into their fold or destroyed.

Arriving at an intersection, he heard a yelp of surprise. Metalman again. He saw him waving his arms frantically at two others, Crashman and Bubbleman. They ran, just as Wraith expected, and thus he followed.

Once he saw them coming out of the tight alleyways and into open space, he let his Darkness creep out once more. Panicked by the loss of sight, the robots ran even faster. Metalman, however, tripped, and thanks to Wraithman's power, his companions did not realize it.

He heard Naoshi's whimpering as he approached silently. With little effort, he lifted the smaller robot up by his head and looked into his eyes. "Little lamb, you have strayed from the herd for the last time. I am afraid this time, a wolf has found you."

"But- but you're a big mean robot," whimpered Naoshi. "You're not a wolf. But Treble is a wolf, I guess. And a robot. He's a wolf robot, but you're just a robot."

Wraithman stared at the robot with confusion. "It was a metaphor. It's not to be taken literally." He saw the confused expression on Metal's face. "Don't tell me you don't know what a metaphor is."

"...okay, I won't." Wraith sighed.

"I really doubt the General could find you useful... so unfortunately, I must say... farewell."


Metalman's body fell to the ground, lifeless. His head still remained in Wraithman's grip like some sort of hunter's trophy. He look at the blank orbs the were once Naoshi's eyes, musing to himself...

The head blinked. "Ouchies!"

"...this..." Wraithman looked at the ground, then back at the head in his hand. "I cut off your head. And you're still functioning."

"Yeah, pretty much. It happens a lot, though."

The specter was even more confused by this phenomenon. "I find this... surprisingly... a bit disturbing." He blinked once more and stared at the head in his hand. "What are-"

A sharp pain came into his finger as Naoshi retracted his face plate and bit down, hard! Wraithman shook him away and examined the digit for a moment. Then came frustration. He wouldn't deal with this kind of humiliation anymore today.

He retrieved his scythe and began to march toward where the head had rolled. "I've just had enough of you, cretin. And once I'm finished with you-" He heard a faint snap has he placed his foot down. In another split second, it came to him.

Another trap!

Light exploded all around him. Noise, clamoring alarm-like sounds assaulted him at once. Even with his upgrade defenses against sound could help; they were so loud, so close! Too much!

He couldn't... he couldn't concentrate on his Darkness. It faded away, replaced by several dozen used cars, honking and blaring and flashing their lights all toward him.

Too much light, too much sound... he had to get away. He had to-

"Reel him in!

Woodman swung a massive limb into Wraithman's back, sending him further into the used car lot. The force of the punch had definitely cracked it, that Wraithman knew. And barely, he could see the other remaining Warriors surrounding him.

A trap... a trap so clever! So effective! He had to escape!

Desperately he attempted to disable the electronics in the vehicles, but being battered by his weaknesses made him slow... too slow. A pair of Crash Bombs collided into him at full force, dealing a heavy blow that he could not block.

"Alright!" shouted Quickman. "Let's lay it on him!"

Wraithman shut his eyes and tried to cover his hearing ports... too much, it was too much... he had to escape, or he was finished!

Like a wild animal he leaped at the nearest car, bringing his scythe straight through the hood like a missile. The car died, and Wraith moved into the one next to it.

The Warriors paled for the moment; if they didn't hurry, he would escape. It was time to give it their all!

Wraithman prepared to gut the next car, but Iga hit him once more, this time his fists covered with razor sharp leaves. Weakened, but still acknowledging the threat, Wraith brought his scythe to deflect the next assault. He dug deep into Iga's wrist, slicing right through the leafy guard, making the giant cry out. In response, he punched Wraith hard with his other hand, right toward a waiting Airman.

"Here's a little payback, bitch!" He swirled his housing fan, sending the walking horror back toward Iga, who punched him back toward Shadowstrike. Again he was blown and punched back. Wraith once again, however, threw his scythe at the walking fan, this time puncturing his fan housing and break his blades. "Oh come on!" cried the fan as Wraithman tore his scythe out a second time.

Quickman arrived just in time, knocking Wraith away from Air before he could strike. The momentum slide both into a car, unfortunately smashing it silent. This gave Wraith a bit of an edge, allowing him to throw Quickman off him and to destroy the car right next to it.

Over the noise he heard someone shout, "Have some Puku Justice!" He felt several hard objects collide with his chest, a barrage from Bubble Lead from the diminutive robot with a snorkel on his head. Wraith stumbled a bit but regained his composure, making a grab for the assailant.

"Make no mistake," he shouted forcefully, "A wounded animal a very dangerous thing!" He brought his scythe up in attack and brought it down; a boomerang knocked it off course and spared Bubbleman's short life.

Quickman came back to the scene with his large metal boomerang, shouting, "We're not finished yet!" Wraith threw Bubble aside and locked his blade with his opponent's. Like lightning they exchanged blows, both giving the other no room to breath. In the midst of the battle, Wraith was more than impressed for the first time in ages. How long ago was it when he had such a challenge? HAD he ever had such a challenge?

He saw an opening and took it. Wielding his scythe with his right arm, he moved the sharp boomerang out of the way and knocking away his opponent's right arm with his left. The move caught Starnik by surprise, an opportunity Wraithman would not throw away. He aimed for his adversary's head and swung down, hard.

To his surprise, Quickman blocked the attack... with his bare hand! Several of his fingers were sliced off and his left arm was cut open, but the blade missed it's mark by a long shot.

And Wraithman left himself open.

Starnik took no heed of his injuries; he swung his right arm inward and slashed deeply into Wraithman's chest. And it was deep and clean, right into his inner workings. Wraith screamed in agony as the weapon finished it's trip through his torso. He lost grip on his scythe and crossed his arms over his chest, various fluids leaking out from the large wound.

Gingerly he felt inside. Just as he feared... his Dark Energy generator was exposed. Undamaged, but exposed. He had to... retreat.

Retreat? Why? Maybe... this was suppose to happen? Maybe... he was meant to fall here?

Starnik, on the other hand, didn't care about whatever inner thoughts he was having. He sprinted toward Wraith and began to give him a supersonic beat down. It hurt the hell out of his left hand, yes, but he had to make sure Wraith was going to stay down. Like they say, if you want something done, make sure it's done right.

The other Warriors watched on as it went on for another minute or so. When is was done, Quickman stood up and grabbed the battered Wraithman with his good hand and leaped into the air. Then, with all the force he could muster, he threw him down into the nearest car, crumpling it like a tin can. Wraith did not move a muscle.

Iga, had finished recovering Naoshi's parts when they saw their victory. "Alright, we did it! We beat the spooky man!" Iga smiled and looked at his friend's head. "Yeah, we did it alright."

"Hey, Starnik," cried Crashman, "are you okay?" Smirking, and using what remaining digits he had on his left hand, the Scarlet Adonis gave a messy thumbs up. Honestly, 'Sage found it disturbing, but didn't say anything. "Remind me not to get on your bad side anytime soon."

Bubbleman walked up with Airman and looked at the remains of Wraithman. "Is he really dead now?" He raised his buster with glee. "Want me to deliver some more pain to him?"

Starnik was about to say something when Wraithman gasped, startling everyone. Everyone but Starnik raised their weapons at the wounded SA officer; he, on the other hand, cautiously approached the wreckage where he laid.

Wraith felt a presence above him and, weakly, turned to it. "Heh... that... that was a neat little trap you've set up for me... I'm... impressed." Starnik didn't bother to smile, or to gloat. He just looked down upon the battered android. "I underestimated you all... I thought you were like the others... but you proved me wrong. It's... it's almost funny."

"Yeah yeah, you done with the death speech yet?" Wraithman coughed weakly and pointed near his torso wound. Starnik looked inside and saw something hanging out of place. Curiousity got the better of him and he reached inside.

Crashman panicked at what he saw. "Wait a minute, man! What are you doing!?" But his fear was short lived as nothing happened. In Starnik's hand, connected by only a few frayed wires was a strange device. It looked similar to power generator, only... different. "Is that his power core, or something?"

Wraithman garbled weakly. "That is... my Dark Energy core... the source of my power... my life..." He paused for a bit, then looked at Starnik once more. "None of my abilities are working right now... I'm too damaged... I'm only alive because of what you hold in your hand."

"So what, you want use to so you mercy, or something?" What came next was unexpected; it was a laugh. A chilling laugh, but still one nonetheless.

"Mercy... I know mercy... I can give mercy too... The Gladiators are proof of that... But I will not beg for it... for I desire none... and I really doubt I deserve it."

The Warriors looked over themselves and replied in unison. "No kidding."

Looking at the generator in his hand, Starnik pondered what to do. "You realize what I'm gonna do, Wraithman... I disconnect this, you kick the bucket. Your troops will probably shut down and the RPD will win, cause I really doubt Wily's gonna keep hold of the place."

Wraith was silently, if only for a moment. "You've already beaten me, cretin... what happens next is up to you..."

There was a quick wrenching sound, followed by one last painful garble from the ruined Black Lotus creation. Red optics dulled into nothingness, and the last few thoughts flowed through his memory banks. In his hand, Starnik held Wraithman's Dark Energy generator, which now leaked the very darkness that once kept it's owner alive.

"'Strike," said Starnik, dropping the device onto the ground. "Honor's all yours."

The walking fan was smiling, even with his lack of mouth. "Oh yeah. Nighty night, Grim Loser!"

His large yellow leg fell on the device and cracked it open like an over sized nut, spilling the shadowy substance all over the ruined ground. It almost seemed alive as it squirmed for a distance, then melted into the ground like a haunted specter.

The Warriors gazed at the sight. After a month of miserableness, this victory of theirs was the pick up they needed.

"Oh yeah! This is why we are Team Awesome!" shouted Shadowstrike. He cringed at his injuries, but his good mood remained and he cheered on. "We can take on anything!"

Starnik simply smiled. Looking at his team in high spirits lifted his own as well. The city may have been lost, yes, but they had sourced a major victory; they had beaten a powerful SA officer without their full team. Boy, Cyros was gonna love to hear this one...

This is Wily to all available units, this is an emergency order, maximum priority!

They all blinked. What the heck was Cyros doing on the radio? And why was he issuing an emergency order? The Warriors listened carefully over the still noisy car alarms.

All available unit, retreat to fall back point Omega-Six-Seven. The Space Fortress is under attack! I repeat, the Space Fortress is under attack! Retreat to fall back point-

"'Omega-Six-Seven?' Starnik, what the hell is the old man babbling about?" Starnik now looked very serious as he turned to his comrades.

"Something's happening up there... something bad." He started on a light jog into the city. "Let's find whatever of our guys are left and get outta here!"

"To where?" shouted Bubbleman.

"No time to explain! Let's pack up shop and am-scray!"

Unsure of the situation, the others followed Starnik into the heart of Hong Kong once more. Something big had just happened.


With the SA's officer dead and the remaining Wily presence gone, the RPD was able to claim a swift victory over Hong Kong. Immediately relief and extra troops arrived to help those that survived the onslaught and make sure there were no stragglers left anywhere. One particular unit heard a calamity some distance away and found it's source, a used car lot making a big light show.

It wasn't long before they were all shut down and the unit was able to investigate further. What surprised them was the broken and battered android resting on top of a crushed car. Obviously he had been slammed into it from above. After making sure it was definitely off line, the commanding officer called in reinforcements to transport it for further study.

The recovery team pried the corpse from it's metal coffin and loaded it onto the transport truck, also taking time to collect the remains of it's supposed power source from the pavement. As the transport flew off back to America, two human officers looked at the broken monstrosity.

"Damn... I'd hate to see the guys that did this." His partner nodded in agreement. "Any idea who this guy is... or was?"

"We got an ID on him already." The older man held up a PDA with Wraithman's profile on it. "Goes by the name of Wraithman. Very dangerous robot with no known origin. First appeared on our radar after killing a large group of Russian police officers several years back. Was confirmed by Officer Makenshi of defecting to the Scissor Army during his mission to Edmonton. Rumored to have been present in Rome and Cairo as well. List of abilities includes manipulation of darkness and high combat skills with a scythe. Only observed weakness is to high intensity light. Everything else is a blank."

Both looked at Wraithman's body once more. "Now I REALLY hope I don't run into whatever did this." They both looked at the broken generator in it's display case. "You ever see a power source like that?"

"Can't say I have... R&D is going to have a field day with our haul, am I right?"

"Oh yeah... it's not everyday we recover a dead SA death machine. is dead, right?"

"Relax, if that broken pile of scrap with it's power source, I doubt it's gonna rise up from the grave like a zombie.

A tense moment passed. "Dude, don't joke like that."

"Ha ha ha, you're so easy to freak out. Come on, let's get a drink."

Both officers walked out of the room and left the remains of Wraithman behind. The lights went off automatically after a few minutes, leaving the metallic corpse in it's own little sarcophagus. Would he ever rise again? Only time would tell if his brand of dusk would ever return.



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