Save Metro City!

Haunted By...THE GHOSTMASTER GENERAL!!

The team defeated Hell Harry and the Ghostmaster General. Freddie Mercury informed them that this would be an important battle and sent them to the airport. At the airport, the Neo Dread Hand attacked in Timebeard’s pirate ship. Thinking quickly, the Mariner stabbed the Wraith–since the Descendant was his, well, descendant, this created a paradox that attracted the Clock Roach. Timebeard disappeared into a portal as he grappled with the Clock Roach. However, the Wraith was still dying and all of a sudden the Descendant was starting to fade away. What would the team do?!

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EXPLOSION FORCE!! (Part 1)

After some light interrogation of one of the remaining Pawn Shop Owners, the Explosion Force set out in their van to find Doctor Swastika’s warehouse. After some searching, they decided to search the spiky warehouse covered with fire and Nazi symbols. They quickly dispatched the two guards at the gate, keeping one alive for yet more interrogation. He said that there was an emergency teleporter to the Iron Cross robot on the second floor, and the team entered. Noticing dozens of well-armed minions, Brian McLane fired the Mjolnir Cannon from the van (much more quickly than a usual Explosion Force session) and destroyed the whole first floor. The team casually strolled in and climbed up the stairs to the second floor.

What greeted them was a trophy room, filled with objects that the Schultz Family had taken from their foes. This included a big shelf filled with guns that were too small for BLÜDDGÜNN’s purposes; David Thorn took one for himself. However, as he removed the gun from its stand, an alarm sounded and the Silverback and BLÜDDGÜNN himself entered. There was a fight, the details of which I forget except that Callisto got blasted out of the building. To be continued…

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Mighty Morphin'...PAWN SHOP OWNERS?!?!
Collect all five!

The Mighty Morphin’ Pawn Shop Owners attacked the party…with little effect. Though Recoome was able to pull off a Recoome Knee and Elbow on one of the party members, the rest, though clad in super sentai suits, were still inaccurate and ineffective. Jeff in particular, armed with tire irons, effectively gave up. At the last second, they decided to go for their giant transforming robot; however, while the party was distracted by the transformation sequence, one of the Owners lobbed a knockout grenade in front of them, knocking them out, as per the purpose of the knockout grenade.

As all looked bleak for our brave heroes, a gear flew from the sky and embedded itself in the ground in front of the pawn shop owners. Gearhead had, at long last, reappeared, along with a new, unknown team of heroes: Catseye, Boxcars, Firestarter (and his partner Smokescreen), and the Gunsmith. This new team made short work of the giant robot. As the New Legion awoke, the new team introduced themselves: the Explosion Force, an elite group of murder hobos dedicated to investigate paranormal occurrences in Metro City. Lichard Nixon and Doctor Swastika had both summoned gigantic armies of zombies for reasons unknown, and they couldn’t stop both of them on their own.

Almost like it was convenient to the plot, a giant robot arose from the sea: Doctor Swastika’s infamous Iron Cross mech. At the same time, Lichard Nixon appeared above the suburbs. With him was the undead ghostlord William Henry Harrison, who summoned a giant flaming statue of Harry S. Truman from the earth. A plan had to be made, and quickly: they decided that the Explosion Force would pursue the forces of Doctor Swastika, while the New Legion would attack Nixon with the hopes of stopping his reign of terror for good. With that, the teams split up…until next time.

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Apothios...ARISING!
Technology ripped off from a Fantastic Four comic!

The worst case scenario had happened. Prince Apathios had finally gained the Crown of Atlantis. The team knew that they would have to strike quickly if they wanted to have a chance of surviving the ordeal. There was only one option left: Locate Apathios’ base and defeat him before anyone knew what was happening. The team immediately ran to the Secret Hangar and took off in the Puffin. After flying over the ocean for several miles, the Puffin’s radar finally detected a large, slowly-moving object on the sea floor. The Mariner immediately put the plane into a dive, converting it into its submersible mode and blasting through the water.

However, the journey would not be so easy. Something slammed into the side of the Puffin, causing it to take on water. Looking through a porthole, the team saw Tiger Rider, flying on a torpedo through the open ocean and itching to take revenge. Bright Man attempted to throw a barrel at him, but he only succeeded in making the leak worse. As Apathios’ moving fortress came into view, the Mariner was able to guide the heavily damaged ship into the wall. Bright Man fired some missiles while the Puffin scraped along the corridor, finally managing to hit Tiger Rider, resulting in a gigantic explosion. The team was barely able to don breathing devices (save for the Mariner) before the Puffin ran into the wall, breaking into a dozen pieces.

After some exploring, the team deciphered a map in Atlantean and was just about to descend to a lower level of the fortress when suddenly the Mariner’s armor started picking up a radio signal from the nearby communications office. It was only partially there, but he could clearly make out the words “Five minutes”, “Nutro-nuclear dissolvo-bomb”, and “complete annihilation” used close to each other. This, they guessed, was not good.

They descended several levels before reaching the bottom, which was sealed off by a gigantic blast door. Deciding to wait before attemptint to open it, they explored the second floor of the fortress, labeled “ARMORY” on the map. Unfortunately, the Atlantean grunts used only swords and other common weapons, and that was mostly what they found; the Wraith decided to keep some harpoons for later. However, there was a very tempting sealed door at the end of the corridor; the Wraith was able to open the complex Atlantean lock. Inside was a very large rifle. Instead of ammunition, a container of mysterious powder attached to it; this was the powder used to change fish into Atlanteans.

They returned to the blast doors, and while the Wraith worked on it, the team discussed more of their lives outside of punching things. I don’t remember any of them, but I think the Descendant had met someone at the reception at the start of the arc.

The doors slowly slid open, and the team swam down, right into Prince Apathios’ throne room. There he sat, haughtily, with bad posture, accompanied by a cuttlefish mage. Upon his head sat the Crown of Atlantis. After some taunting, the fight began. Sharks swam out of shafts in the wall as Apathios bent their wills to his command. The Wraith, moving swiftly, fired a harpoon towards Apathios, maanging to deal some damage. Meanwhile, the cuttlefish summoned a great whirlpool. Though the Mariner was able to resist it at first, the cuttlefish magnetized his armor and Bright Man’s buster, causing them to attach together. The whirlpool threw them through shaft as they collided with the wall of the adjacent shark pen. Sharks swam at them as the Mariner aimed and fired…

Creating a shark Atlantean loyal to him.

The Mariner detached himself from Bright Man and swam back, shooting sharks as fast as he can. However, the situation was dire. Sharks had swarmed the Descendant and he had passed out from blood loss. The Wraith was keeping the sharks in check, but for every wound Apathios caused with the Shark Spear, another shark appeared. Meanwhile, the Nutro-Nuclear Dissolvo Bomb was mere seconds away from launch. In a heroic comeback, a Descendant from the future appeared and grabbed onto the missle along with Bright Man as it launched.

The dissolvo-bomb streaked through the sky, the two heroes barely clinging onto it in the face of the wind. After a tense few seconds, the Descendant opened a panel on the side of the missile and, with Bright Man’s help, rewired the target. The missile flew harmlessly into space and the dynamic duo fell back into Metro City, Bright Man landing on Craig.

Meanwhile, the Mariner, in a last-ditch maneuver, fired the gun at Apathios. The beam hit the jewel embedded in the crown, causing Apathios to radiate light as his power increased tenfold. Good going. The Wraith, furious at the endangerment of his orphans, used his last remaining harpoon to stab the gem. At once, he experienced a waking dream; timelines after timelines, dimensions after dimensions flowed in front of him. At last, he woke up to find that Apathios had dissolved.

The remaining Atlanteans were cleared of the fortress and the Mariner drove his sweet prize up to the docks. All that remained was reconstruction…

Six months later, most of the damage caused by the Atlanteans had been repaired. The Wraith went to his mailbox in Industrial Aquatics, only to discover a mysterious letter. Hauntingly, the letter was addressed to “Lewis Turner”. He tore open the letter. A mysterious group desired revenge for unknown sins, and wanted him and the rest of the team at the docks. With no choice, he decided to go.

The team arrived at the docks at a windy hour. The tension was thick enough to be thick. Suddenly, a warehouse door slid opening, revealing five pudgy middle-aged men. Confused, the Wraith asked who they were. They were Jay, Jeff, Jim, John, and RECOOME–pawn shop owners who had been robbed by the Chameleon Gang in the past. Now, they were ready to fight back…as…(one lenghty transformation sequence later)…the MIGHTY MORPHIN’ PAWN SHOP OWNERS!!!

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Atlantis...gets RAD!!
Product placement!

The van carrying the team drove away from the rubble of Supercon, recovering Bright Man and the Mariner through advanced technology (that left at least the Mariner with a very unsettling dream). Jonah explained to them that Atlantean forces are attacking Metro U en masse, with the intent of retrieving the Mountain Dew buried deep below the Rad Studies department. They were going over there now to fend off the siege. However, the exposition was interrupted when something crashed into the side of the van, sending it into a wall.

The team got out of the van as a mysterious figures emerged from the Old West saloon on the opposite side of the street: Two pistol shrimp Atlanteans, decked out in cowboy duds. The ensuing battle was short and ended with most of the shrimps’ minions destroyed and one of the brothers a future Red Lobster entree. The remaining shrimp fired a shot into the air, but instead of the help he was expecting, a torpedo flew in from the sky and blew him up.

Subsequent torpedoes flew at the party, causing them to take cover. They seemed to fly from nowhere and everywhere simultaneously; since the team couldn’t identify the source, they took off at a run for Metro U under heavy bombardment. The Descendant took some damage, but not enough to be bad, the Mariner suffered some unknown damage to his suit, and the Wraith and Bright Man suffered little to no damage. The team proceeded into the tiny subway system used by Metro U and discovered no train cars and a tunnel filled knee-high with water.

As the party proceeded through the tunnel, they noticed dozens of dead or unconscious Atlanteans strewn to the side. A large number of them had impact damage roughly the size of a human head. The team eventually came to a large makeshift barricade cutting off the tunnel, with a small door in the side. One of them knocked, and Leonard Newton–the Mathemagician–answered the door. He led the team through the barricade, noting that the Felony Department had decided to form a temporary truce and after the Atlanteans were defeated, they would return to being enemies.

The team went to the Rad Studies department, where they found several of their old colleagues discussing plans of attack. The issue was that the department was not getting room to recover–there was nothing more valuable than the Dew with which to distract the Atlanteans. Immediately, all eyes shifted to the Descendant, who grudgingly pulled the Crown of Atlantis from under his hat. The party decided that the crown wasn’t enough; in order to fight the Atlanteans, they’d need to…get rad.

Dr. Joseph Sweet brought the party to the underground Dew vault, and after filling a Big Gulp container for all of them, wished them luck. The team each drank their share of Dew, experiencing their own MEGA RAD changes: The Descendant turned green and gained tendrils, the Wraith (add later), the Mariner’s armor turned green and gained logo stickers, and Bright Man temporarily reverted to Dirkman Lee once more.

The party grabbed convenient skateboards as Dr. Sweet drank his cup of Dew and grew to a large size, knocking aside Atlanteans like toys. The party skated up the tallest building they could find and kickflipped off, immediately attracting the attention of their opponents. Suddenly, a torpedo crashed to the ground, and two figures walked out of the dust: A tiger shark and a coelacanth. They were Apathios’ top lieutenants: Tiger Rider and the Time Sprinkler.

Tiger Rider shot torpedoes at the party, who took some damage, as the Time Sprinkler punched the Wraith thirty seconds into the future and into an art installation. The Mariner ripped another installation (made out of shrapnel and broken glass for some reason) out of the ground and took a swing at the Time Sprinkler, but he transformed the installation into its material components. Bright Man, however, fired a beam at the Time Sprinkler that he was unable to avoid, causing him to note that Bright Man was anomalous in time.

Meanwhile, Tiger Rider tried to hook the Wraith with a garotte wire studded with his own teeth, but the Wraith managed to grab the wire, flip around, and kicked him in the face. To add injury to injury, he then threw Tiger Rider’s own torpedo at him, damaging him heavily.

Suddenly, Rad Chad appeared, claiming Tiger Rider for his own. In the ensuing argument, Tiger Rider shot a torpedo and flew away with Chad. While the team was distracted, an Atlantean minion tried to grab the crown and run away with it; when the party noticed, the Time Sprinkler time-copied it a hundred times, covering the entire quad with crowns. Bright Man shot him into the shrapnel field he left, but right before the Mariner could curb-stomp him, he teleported away. The minion got away with three crowns.

Apathios has now come dangerously close to victory. Tune in next week for…the thrilling conclusion!

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Return To The Return To Supercon: Welcome...To DIE!!
Subbed and dubbed for all tastes!

When we last left our heroes, Weeaboo Man had put a cardboard box with “GUNDAM” on it over his head and become a fearsome battle robot. He proceeded to target his dad, Ultra-Dad, with a barrage of heat-seeking missiles, but Bright Man boldly stepped in and used a Bright Stopper to freeze the missles. However, the bright flash of light created a hotter target than Ultra-Dad, causing the missiles to aim at Bright Man instead, blowing a hole in the floor and incapacitating him, the Streetest Fighter, and Redundo.

Thinking quickly, the Wraith distracted Weeeaboo-Man with an illusory mech as the rest of the New Legion fired at it. At first, Weeaboo-Man managed to absorb the damage with the Gundam’s deflector shields, but they started to crack when Ultra-Dad shot bottle rockets at it. However, the team was so focused on fighting Weeaboo-Man, they didn’t notice that the real Silver Fox had snuck up from behind them with a minigun. The furious fursuited fiend opened fire, heavily damaging the Wraith. The Wraith gave a mighty leap and used his [NOPE] to saw the minigun in two, destroying it and burning the fur clean off the Silver Fox’s suit.

Enraged, and with his mech near destruction, Weeaboo-Man revealed the Gundam’s most powerful weapon: A chest-mounted laser. He fired a gigantic beam…into the illusory mech in front of him. Although it missed the party, it blew a hole in the ceiling from which Captain Maximum entered. He proceeded to punch the Mariner into a brony DJ seven rooms away.

Suddenly, 90’s Internet Man made a move: He hacked into Weeaboo-Man’s Gundam suit. The suit unloaded the rest of its missiles and another laser at the two antagonists who were standing next to each other, blowing a hole through five floors and hitting the dozens of gas-powered emergency generators under the con center. Supercon exploded in a mighty inferno that the Wraith and the Descendant managed to escape by using a tarp as a makeshift hang glider and the Mariner dodged by rappelling out with extension cord. The Mariner fell into a pond, where he realized that the section of his suit he used for whiskey sours could also be used for breathing underwater.

The trio of remaining heroes surveyed the destruction they had caused, when suddenly, Captain Maximum burst through the rubble, carrying the Silver Fox with him. The Fox snapped their fingers and an orange-gloved hand burst through the rubble. Bright Man, wearing a pair of mind-control necomimi, slowly rose up through the wreckage.

Bright Man used Bright Stopper on the party, blinding the Mariner. The Descendant shot off the ears aftewards, but the Mariner was stunned enough for the Silver Fox to stab through his suit with their claws, causing massive bleeding. The Wraith finally convinced Captain Maximum that the Silver Fox was a villain, and Captain Maximum ended the conflict by punching the Silver Fox across town and into a pet shop.

Captain Maximum apologized for the incident and began the arduous task of reconstructing the con center. As the party turned away, an Industrial Aquatics emergency van appeared, driven by Ishmael, to pick up the Mariner and crew. There was no time to spare: Metro University’s store of Mountain Dew was under attack by the Atlanteans…

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Return to...SUPERCON!!
Expedited registration!

When we last left our brave heroes, they had been approached by the Streetest Fighter, interim leader of Supercon after the Chessmaster’s arrest. He begged for the team’s help, saying that the Silver Fox had declared martial law and kicked him out of the convention. The team went with him to a Thai restaurant near the con center (“Thai Gershot”) for more information. There they met the other members of the strike force the Streetest Fighter had assembled: The Incomparable Redundo (who forgave the team for their earlier confrontation), Nineties Internet Man, and a middle-aged man without a costume, whom the Streetest Fighter referred to as Ultra-Dad.

The Streetest Fighter laid out the plan: The floodgate was on the bottom floor, surrounded by cameras. If the team attempted to go through the ground floor, the Silver Fox could control the flow of water and drown them all. Instead, they were to penetrate a barricade on the second floor, split into subteams, and make their way to the top floor. After some discussion, they formed TEAM CYBERBRIGHT (Bright Man and Nineties Internet Man), TEAM STEALTH (The Wraith, the Descendant, and Ultra-Dad), and TEAM MARINER AND DEADWEIGHT (The Mariner, Redundo, and the Streetest Fighter).

Nineties Internet Man destroyed the barricade to the second floor and the team split into groups, heading toward various routes to the third floor. Team Cyberbright entered a screening room, where an anime of Bright Man’s previous stage show, “Kickin’ Rad”, was playing. They sat for a spell to watch it, but suddenly Ham-Hands Tony shot up the screen, bursting through it immediately afterwards. Tony had been captured by the Silver Fox and equipped with a pair of mind-controlling robot cat ears. Meanwhile, the Mariner scoured the dealers’ hall for a replacement weapon; He eventually settled for a [WEAPON DESCRIPTION REMOVED DUE TO LEGAL THREATS FROM INDUSTRIAL AQUATICS].

The other two teams blew through a barricade of con-ops agents as Team Cyberbright fought Ham-Hand Tony. Eventually, Nineties Internet Man used a marquee tag to remove the cat ears from Tony’s head and fired some HTML that struck him through. The courageous duo clambered up a fire ladder in the corner of the room. The teams met up on the third floor and faced a problem: The elevator to the fifth floor needed a staff key card. While the teams pondered what to do, Nineties Internet Man attempted to hack the water portal; he accidentally revealed a powerful Atlantean mage, who sprayed him with a flood of water until he shut the portal again. Eventually, he hacked the keycard into thinking it was the Chessmaster’s, and the team proceeded upward.

The offices were far different from the last time the teams had arrived; the whole area was completely dark and cluttered with junk. The party entered cautiously, eventually discovering a lab area where the Silver Fox was attempting to disassemble the Mariner’s harpoon-cane. The Mariner grabbed the harpoon, but as he touched it an alarm went off, causing the Fox to appear at the entrance with a backup of minions. The Mariner, with no time to activate the cane, swung the [REDACTED] at the Fox, sawing off its head. There was a bright flash of light…

Which, once it disappeared, revealed Weeaboo-Man dressed in poor-quality fox pajamas. He was, of course, angry, but as soon as he saw Ultra-Dad he became apoplectic: Ultra-Dad was his dad, set to bring him back home and away from this dumb nerd gathering. With a mighty cry of “YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP, DAD!!!” he donned his most powerful costume: A cardboard box with “GUNDAM” written on it. With another bright flash of light, the team saw a fifty-foot tall giant robot flying above them.

To be continued…

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Menace of...the Robot Masters!
Over 1000 cheat codes!

Immediately after the defeat of Robin Hood, the Mariner recieved a call from Cpt. Archibald Curry, the head captain of the Industrial Aquatics fleet. Most of the denizens of lower Metro City had been evacuated and he was sending a boat to pick them up. Hauling the Wraith’s unconscious body between them, the Mariner and the Descendant managed to get on the boat–a small barge that was decent for maneuvering between buildings–and speed away from the planetarium as it flooded.

Curry explained the situation as he sailed. A huge Atlantean army had invaded Metro City and opened dozens of portals (“floodgates”) that were pumping water into the city at an incredible rate. The assorted super-gangs were fighting back, but the battle could swing in either direction. They were on their way to the theatre district, the location of the nearest floodgate, to continue the fight.

Suddenly, the ship ground to a halt. The Mariner volunteered to check the problem and, suited up, dove behind the ship. The propellers had been tangled with some kind of net. Just as he finished untying them, a shark charged at him and he activated his boots at the last minute, propelling him to safety. Meanwhile, the Descendant noticed a huge, dark shape coiling underneath the boat. It raised its head above the water, revealing a titanic oarfish (“The King of Herrings”). Sharks started swarming around the boat as the two prepared for battle.

Meanwhile, Bright Man was just finishing his one-man show in a nearby theater. As he droned on about Splash Woman, he started to hear sounds of a struggle coming from outside, and eventually the King of Herrings smashed through the wall, revealing his comrades. After Bright Stopping the audience, Bright Man leaped mightily onto the boat, simultaneously waking up the Wraith.

The Wraith, after screaming at Bright Man, took careful aim and caused a deep, bleeding wound on the King of Herrings, attracting the attention of the sharks. However, the King of Herrings was not finished, and with a mighty blow split the ship nearly in two. The New Legion escaped in pairs–The Wraith and the Descendant on one side, Bright Man and the Mariner on the other–to nearby theatre administration offices. Cpt. Curry escaped in the lifeboat, but not before firing a rocket launcher at the sinking ship, destroying it and sending the King flying.

According to a map, the two buildings met in an underground green room complex. The heroes walked down the stairs and through a long hallway. As the silence grew too much to bear, the Descendant decided that now that Lichard Nixon had made an appearance, it was time to own up about the true reason he went back in time. As it turned out, the Descendant sent himself back in time to protect the Wraith, partially because he was important to the timestream, but also partially because…he was the Wraith’s descendant.

Meanwhile, the Mariner and Bright Man came upon a file cabinet near the green room. The Mariner, flipping quickly through the files, found the file for the preview night of “Kickin’ Rad!!!: The Story of Tommy Maxx”…the very performance that caused Dirkman Lee’s transformation. Only one paper drew his eye: A checklist for the flying actors’ harnesses. Chad McGuire had signed off on four of the five actors. However, Lee’s had a different pair of initials next to it: LN. Nixon’s conspiracy was growing more and more ominous by the second.

The two groups met in the green room. However, before they could pat themselves on the back, someone–the leader of this area–announced over the intercom that they had detected the Crown of Atlantis within the theater complex. The Wraith disguised the team as fish-men to avoid detection and they went towards the source of the flooding: The Metro Dome, an outdoor amphitheater used by large touring musical productions. They emerged into the pouring rain, facing two hooded figures.

One of the figures held out a box of Pocky, causing Bright Man to shed his disguise and leap at it. As he did so, the figure stepped back, shedding his cloak. It was then that the party knew that this fight was going to be incredibly stupid.

It was Toad Man.

The other figure took off his cloak, revealing Snake Man. They had come to the theater district so they could specifically fight Bright Man to see which one was the strongest Robot Master, and it was time to slam jam. Snake Man summoned two robot serpents from the flooded Metro Dome and the fight began.

Most of the party concentrated on attacking Snake Man, who, badly injured, jumped to a floating piece of debris to act as backup. Toad Man started swiveling his hips suggestively, and Bright Man, knowing that this was the setup to his Rain Flush attack, barely dodged as a huge stream of water crashed down upon him from the sky. However, he dodged right into the laser blast from one of the serpents…

Snake Man, in a final attack, shot two snakes with incredible accuracy at the Descendant. However, right before it looked like he was to fall, the Wraith jumped in front of him. The snakes latched onto his flesh and he fell into the water. The Descendant helped him out and gave him first aid, but he was obviously incapacitated for the time being. The Mariner managed to reach Snake Man and stabbed him with his harpoon, causing him to explode. However, this caused the harpoon to fly away, and before he could retrieve it, something moving faster than the eye could see caught it. It stopped briefly on the ground before escaping, revealing a creepy grey fox fursuit: The Silver Fox had returned.

Bright Man’s head swam as the trauma, combined with the surroundings, shifted his mind back into gear. For one minute, one golden minute, he became Dirkman Lee, the normal actor he had always been. The Mariner convinced him the whole fight was a movie setup, and Lee, filled with zeal, leapt at Toad Man, delivering a mighty blow and destroying the amphibian Robot Master. Almost immediately, his headgear fizzled out and he became Bright Man again.

As the team recovered, someone gave a mighty battle cry and blasted the front doors of the amphitheater open. A man in a disheveled pink karate uniform ran into the hall, screaming. As he calmed down, he introduced himself as the Streetest Fighter. He had a problem: The Silver Fox had stolen one of the floodgate control pendants, declared martial law over SuperCon and banished him. The Fox was reverse-engineering various pieces of technology to improve their suit, and soon would be unstoppable.

It looks like the team will be making an unexpected detour…a return to SUPERCON!!!

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Apes...and ATLANTEANS!!
Gorilla on the cover!

Several weeks had passed since the defeat of the Food Court, and the Mariner was in a good mood for once as he sat in the armored car driving down Metro City’s streets. He had had some time to himself, the gallery he sponsored at the Metro City Aquarium, “Treasures of the Deep”, was going along swimmingly, and Ishmael had even booked Bright Man a one-man show in the theatre district at the same day so he wouldn’t show up. All that was left was to transport the most important item in the collection: The Crown of Atlantis, said to confer immense power on the Royal Atlantean who bore it. It was part of a three-part set, along with the Cape of Tides (water control) and the Shark Spear (aaaagh sharks). The Mariner had discovered in some mysterious ruins in the Sargasso Sea and, after some time spent in his vault, he was ready to finally unveil it to the public. He introduced himself to the museum director, along with the Wraith and the Descendant, who would be providing security detail at the event, sealed the Crown in the vault, and departed until the next day.

The event, too, proceeded smoothly, as the Mariner chatted up some of the other major donors to the aquarium. Finally, the time came to open the vault, and the director punched in some numbers in the lock and opened the door…but as soon as she grasped the handle, there was a tremendous boom from inside. The trio immediately kicked open the door, only to discover that someone had smashed through the six-foot-thick wall on the other side, smashed the case, and stolen the Crown. The team immediately jumped through the hole in the wall in hot pursuit, ending up in a warehouse filled with aquarium supplies.

In no time flat, the team found themselves on the business end of several machine guns, wielded by…orangutans??? A hulking figure stepped out of the shadows: A gorilla wearing a domino mask, the Crown perched on its head like a thimble on a coconut. The Wraith knew who they were dealing with: The Schmidt Family of Crime (Since 1939) had sent their best enforcer, the Silverback, to steal the Crown. After some taunting on both sides, the battle began.

The Silverback’s group of assorted primate soldiers was surprisingly effective, corralling all three party members at the entrance of the room with machine gun fire. However, the Mariner fired an electric blast that knocked the Crown off the Silverback’s head, and the Wraith created the illusion that the crown had actually flown out of the window. This brief window of confusion was enough to stop the Silverback, but the minions managed to wound the trio and cause the Wraith to drop the illusion.

The Silverback knocked over a tall piece of shelving filled with boxes in an attempt to escape, but the Wraith used this to his advantage, creating the illusion that boxes were descending on the extras to cause them to freak out and fall off their perches. The Mariner made a mighty leap over the fallen shelf and confronted the Silverback. While his attempt at entangling the ape failed, he fired a lucky lightning shot, severely wounding the Silverback. The crown clattered to the floor.

However, before the Mariner could pick it up, a powerful cannon fired a name through the wall, causing him to duck into cover. The name was that of the person nobody in the party wanted to see: BLÜDDGÜNN!!!!! The wall detonated, revealing the Schmidt Family’s youngest member, a shallow layer of water obscuring his feet but not the tree-trunk sized gun he was somehow holding in his tiny dinosaur hands. Noticing the crown on the floor, he leapt for it at the same time as the Mariner, who managed to kick him away just as a giant flood of water swept him away.

Realizing the water levels were showing no sign of decreasing, the party climbed up a ladder leading to the roof. On the way, the Mariner boasted about his armor knocking out the Wraith back when they were rivals, but the Wraith fired back that if it was such an advanced suit, surely it would be able to work underwater like every other diving suit in the entire world. This fight ceased as they reached the roof to find a hard rain pouring and Metro City beginning to flood.

Out to sea, a whirlpool formed, growing larger and larger. An ornate pillar of water shot up, and a figure advanced imperiously up steps that formed on the pillar’s sides. At this point, the Mariner’s player made a Homestuck joke and was deducted a Hero Point. A “screen” of droplets formed above the mysterious figure as he revealed his identity: He was Apathios, first in line to the throne of Atlantis. He had come to Metro City for two reasons: First, to reclaim the Crown of Atlantis, his rightful inheritance, and second, to flood the city and add it to the holdings of Atlantis.

The team had little time to ponder their next move as the Wraith barely dodged out of the way of a jet of water aimed at his neck. The Descendant noticed a hole in the window of the adjacent planetarium, and the Mariner leapt through it to check. Nobody was there, but he noticed a pouch on the ground. Picking it up, he detected traces of the powder used to convert fish into Atlanteans: In other words, bad news. What he didn’t detect was the mysterious sniper re-entering and shooting off his helmet. Although he couldn’t see who it was, the other two could: It was an archerfish Atlantean, probably from the aquarium. They jumped in through the window, but the sniper (later nicknamed Robin Hood by the team) had already gone through the door.

The Descendant detected water droplets on the floor leading into the domed movie theater, and the team cautiously pushed open the doors. Inside was the biggest surprise of all: A portal pouring a gigantic torrent of water into the column marking the middle of the theater and, presumably, into the street. Suddenly, Atlanteans armed with swords burst from the seats and attacked. Robin Hood shortly after opened fire from behind the movie screen with nerve-wracking accuracy, even managing to pinpoint the Descendant’s location (he was saved by his main energy shield working for once).

The fight continued, and although the Wraith was knocked out by a sniper shot, the Descendant knocked Robin Hood down through the screen and the Mariner defeated him with an electric shot. He was wearing a pendant, presumably the control device; the Mariner stomped on it and the portal closed. However, they were still sitting ducks with the Crown and it needed to be brought to the Lawyer’s time vault in the Financial District, a long ways away. The first battle had been won, but the war was far from over…

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The Secret Ingredient is...THE GLADIATOR!!
Americanized!

With the Berserker defeated, only one member of the Food Court remained. He chose to strike in an incredibly unexpected way: By sending an invitation to a battle to the death to each of the New Legion members. The letter told them to come to the largest TV studio in the city that Friday or he would start slaughtering civilians; it was signed “The Gladiator”. After looking in the book, the Wraith confirmed that the Gladiator was the Platonic representation of showmanship and was weak to the Platonic representation of bland acting.

Bright Man went to SuperCon and got a cosplay skit actor; meanwhile, the Descendant went to a movie memorabilia shop near his apartment to see if there was anything. Unfortunately, the shop had already been visited; a Sixth Sense member had broken into the building and stolen a signed photograph of Keanu Reeves. Even more worrying, they had used a laser beam to open the case; could Camera X have returned?

The team arrived at the studio at the proper time; a stagehand split them into two groups (Descendant/Bright Man and Mariner/Wraith) and they went into the soundstage, which had been converted into two arenas. Announcing them was The Gladiator:

Chairman

The doors across from both duos opened, revealing their opponents. The Mariner and the Wraith were facing the last two members of the Fifth Element, the Mad Phrenologist and Feng Shui; the Wraith became nearly apoplectic with rage and had to be restrained. On the other side appeared the two remaining field agents of The Sixth Sense: A man with a mysterious glowing eye and another with a rad guitar. The former was a mysterious agent known as Second Sight and the other was Soundwave II, an avatar of Ted Nugent formerly known as the Damned Yankee. Before the battle began, however, the Gladiator revealed that there was a secret ingredient to add excitement to the battle: DINOSAURS!!! More doors opened, revealing slavering dionychuses poised to attack. The battle began almost immediately afterward.

The Descendant took aim and fired, but his time wristband began malfunctioning, sending out powerful waves of temporal energy. Through a portal crawled a gigantic white insect: The Clock Roach. It was hungry, and ready to feed on the source of the time energy. While the Descendant grappled with the Roach, the Mariner fought the Mad Phrenologist to a standstill. The Wraith broke the tie by creating three seperate illusions: That Feng Shui had an inauspicious bump on his head, that Feng Shui was injured and ready for the deinonychuses to eat, and that the Mad Phrenologist was just…out of order. It was at this time that the Gladiator set off one of the stage pyrotechnics for effect, causing a gigantic explosion that knocked the Mariner into a wall and defeated the Phrenologist.

The Descendant broke free of the Clock Roach’s pincers and fired a shot at Second Sight, knocking him out. The signed photograph of Keanu Reeves fluttered to the ground. Thinking quickly, Bright Man wrapped the photo around a lemon and fired it at the unsuspecting Gladiator. The shot was true, and the Gladiator quickly found himself out of control of the situation.

Just as suddenly, the roof cracked open, revealing a tempestuous sky. From above rode the one thing the team really, really didn’t want to see…the Headless Sportsman. Before anyone could act, the Sportsman sucked out the Gladiator’s power orb into a basketball, then turned to face the party. They had interfered with the mysterious LN’s plans one too many times and they must be destroyed. However, before he could attack, someone burst through the wall–it was Clubsport, trying to team up with his great-grandfater! After berating him for being an idiot, the Headless Sportsman bedrudgingly let Clubsport join him.

Even more suddenly than before, time itself seemed to halt as a portal of black magic appeared on the podium. Through it stepped the most powerful villain the group had ever seen, the one orchestrating events that could range back to the Wraith’s childhood: *L*ichard *N*ixon. He had an ultimatum: If the team gave him the book, he would stop the Headless Sportsman. For obvious reasons, the team refused, and Nixon gave the command to kill and stepped through the portal once again. Time resumed.

The Sportsman threw an exploding football at the ground, damaging the Mariner’s piston boots and blowing Bright Man into a nearby hospital, where Craig was recovering from his injuries. Craig actually welcomed the intrusion, as he had landed on top of two people attempting a Onceler-themed wedding proposal. From there, Bright Man constructed a makeshift scope and provided covering fire while the other three continued the fight. Meanwhile, Clubsport hucked a bowling ball at the Descendant, who easily deflected it.

In a last-ditch maneuver, the Mariner threw the Wraith at the Sportsman, and for unknown reasons the Sportsman dissipated and departed through the sky after swearing revenge. Clubsport converted his bowling ball to a Quidditch broom and escaped, as the team pondered what would come in the future…

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