Affleck:  yet one more maligned do-gooder.  As far as I can tell, he rides his motorcycle fast and shoots things.  Unlike everybody else in the group, he still insists on wearing a unitard.  Good grief.  He once told me some sob story about how his parents were killed by a gang and his sister was sold into slavery and blah blah blah blah and how he wants to save others and the whole time he’s talking, I’m thinking, “this guy doesn’t have a chance in hell of scoring with Brenda.” 

As we do in all of the drills, we slid down the emergency pole.  God knows why we can’t invest in a damn elevator or something – I mean, we have an obscene budget financed by a dozen legitimate affiliated companies all dedicated to the preservation of whatever the hell it says at the top of this form.  Seriously, who wants to go into battle with crotch-burn received from sliding down a pole that wasn’t properly polished and oiled because the person who’s turn it was to do so was out on a bender the whole previous night?  How was I supposed to know that there was going to be an emergency today, of all days?

Once we got in the Situation Room, the details were made clear to us.  Team Villain, who as we all know have watched their stock plummet this past year, finally decided to try and do something to fix it.  It’s about time, too … I’ve got a lot invested in shares of their organization, and I’d prefer that they made money instead of just pissing it away on Republican fundraisers and contagious disease research. 

The big light-up map on the wall showed that Team Villain has just entered the city on the North side, which they are definitely not supposed to do.  They showed up as blinking lights on the map, which –

Hey, that reminds me, one time the Slobbers’ housekeeping staff got so pissed at me!  I’d circled Suzy’s house in Crayon on the big light-up wall map, and wrote “for a good time…” next to it.  Pickles came in then and caught me, and that sucked ‘cause I was about to draw some killer graffiti, but he made me go and get the cleaning lady. 

So anyway, we ran like rutting lemurs out to the prep area, and started strapping into our combat outfits.  Affleck usually takes the longest, since his unitard is actually tight leather and it usually sticks as he’s pulling it on, but he’d buttered up his skin before bed and he was actually ready to go first.  Pickles and I took the most time, since we had to strip buck naked, pull on our bio-responsive feedback suits, climb up into our respective power armor suits, and strap in.  Luckily the techs had remembered to cycle the main CPUs, so we were already online by the time we got ourselves all buttoned up.  And like the good little soldier I once was – well, good in the combat effectiveness sense, I guess, but no so much in the “model citizen of the global community” sense – I checked my rail gun and made sure the feed was all clear.

I even got Pickles’ adrenaline pumping.  When he was running through one of those lame systems verification checks, I slipped a stun blank in the chamber, aimed it at him, and waited until he made eye contact.  Man, his eyes went so frikkin’ wide, you‘d swear he thought I was crazy enough to kill him!  I pulled the trigger and set off the concussive blast.  Both he and I were in our suits, so we were totally fine, but the noise and the flash probably made his suit’s bio-waste reclamation unit kick into high gear.  I laughed my ass off, chambered the first flachette round into the rail gun, and headed for the bay door.  Pickles finished his checks and lumbered off after me.  We had to wait a couple of moments for Brenda and Affleck, though.  They must have been still waking up or something, since they were stumbling around a lot and looked like they couldn’t really focus.  After 10 minutes or so they started to get it together, and Affleck managed to stay on his bike without falling off, so we finally shipped out and headed into the city from the South Side.

Anyway, we’re down on the South side of Main Street, and we have a clear line of sight down the road.  About a ½ mile away, we can totally see the baddies spewing onto the scene like some bitter flow of bile.  Within moments I saw several infantry troops tear onto the scene wearing their dumb bad-guy leotards.  A small minitank sped down the street toward us, apparently eager to suck on my special brand of accelerated metal slag.  If that had been it, we would have mopped up with them in a matter of a few seconds.  Unfortunately, they also fielded a Crimson Double K power armor suit, and a crazy silver-horned RocketMan ‘mech.  Clearly, breaking these clowns up into their constituent components was going to take at least 10 minutes now.  How droll.

 

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