EcchiMultiverse

superhero Marvelous Man - Chapter 22

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EcchiMultiverse

All comments and critiques are welcomed here and on my Google Docs(https://drive.google.com/open?id=1RMBwDf7UPA6P6UR9YNSBADC-9ObDd7aj3TdkN4uYk2Y)

For other chapters, I will post them on here later. But you can find the archives on my FA and Tumblr with pics included.

FA: http://www.furaffinity.net/user/ecchimultiverse/

Tumblr: http://ecchimultiverse.tumblr.com/

For first looks and more illustrations, check out my Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/ecchimultiverse

First Chapter | Previous Chapter |  Next Chapter

SPECIAL THANKS TO MY PATRONS:
DONALD MORGAN, ANDREW L, SPECTRI, RANSIS, & IREEAN IREEAN GO AWAY

All comments and critiques are welcomed here and on my Google Docs(https://drive.google.com/open?id=1RMBwDf7UPA6P6UR9YNSBADC-9ObDd7aj3TdkN4uYk2Y)

For other chapters, I will post them on here later. But you can find the archives on my FA and Tumblr with pics included.

FA: http://www.furaffinity.net/user/ecchimultiverse/

Tumblr: http://ecchimultiverse.tumblr.com/

For first looks and more illustrations, check out my Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/ecchimultiverse

First Chapter | Previous Chapter |  Next Chapter

SPECIAL THANKS TO MY PATRONS:
DONALD MORGAN, ANDREW L, SPECTRI, RANSIS, & IREEAN IREEAN GO AWAY

 

 

Chapter 22: Two of Cups

Pink cherry blossoms danced in the warm breeze, as the door to a roof access was wedged open. Sunlight illuminated the robotic figure stepping onto the simulated Japanese high school rooftop. The Soulem, cladded in a zaffre-colored fundoshi and red rectangular glasses, slowly trudged towards two muscled men hugging beneath a cherry blossom tree.

Gemini coughed, “Um, hey guys.”

Marvelous Man and Gene broke their embrace from each other. The musclebound superhero could feel himself blushing at being caught hugging the Totochtin prince. He wanted this intimate moment to stay private; especially from it being crashed by his soured love interest. As he and Gene looked back at Gemini, he saw the Soulem avoiding eye contact with mood rings flushed pink.

“Sorry to interrupt, but the magical researchers need to talk to you,” said Gemini.

The Soulem reported, “Something about upgrading your silver balls...which I’m pretty sure isn’t a sexual euphemism, but it could probably go both ways with you involved, heh.”

“Yes, I can see the humor in your insinuation, Gemini. Thank you for telling me. I will take the leave.” nodded Gene.

The Totochtin prince began his walk towards the simulation’s exit. As he passed by the cherry blossom tree, he stopped in his tracks. Gene turned around to face Marvelous Man.

The rabbit superhero smiled, “Remember the wisdom I have imparted, Marvelous Man. You must make the effort to bandage it up. And when you are ready, I will happily partake in the fruits of the intercourse with you.”

Marvelous Man could feel his body emit an extreme amount of body heat, that it felt like his own flustering was cooking him alive. He and Gemini watched the bunny demigod continue walking towards the rooftop access door. As Gene approached the door and exited through it, Gemini slowly shuffled about to face the musclebound superhero. The Soulem said nothing, while avoiding Marvelous Man’s eyes. The hulking bodybuilder did the same.

“So…” hesitated Gemini, “This is awkward…”

Marvelous Man replied, “Uh-huh…”

The muscle demigod felt like this was his moment to say something. To make the first move in repairing their relationship. But...could not find himself to say anything. Every part of him wanted to either curl up into a ball or fly away. He then heard the Soulem speak up.

“There’s...kinda a lot I want to say, but it’s actually hard to figure out where to start. Which is kinda funny...ya know, cause I got a computer mind and all. So it should be easy to figure it out...Sorry, I’m yammering,” said Gemini.

He continued, “I guess I should say congratulations. After thinking it over, I’m glad you picked Gene. He’s...a lot nicer than how I’ve been.  And I know he can make you happy, since he can detect emotions and all. I don’t even really know the guy, so I can’t just make off-handed assumptions about how he truly feels about you…”

“Oh, no. It’s not like that,” corrected Marvelous Man.

Gemini held up his hand, “Sorry, Justice. Please just let me finish. Before I lose the guts to say all this...or I might go back to being how I was,”

The bulky android paused for a moment before taking in a deep breath. As he released his held breath, his shoulders sagged. Gemini then began to lightly pound his fists together; knuckles against knuckles.

“...You were right. I was being a Dickasaurus Rex. I’m sorry,” admitted the Soulem.

He explained, “And the more I look back on what I did with you, the more I realized how fucked up I was being. I forced my feelings on you and bullied you. And that’s not real love...and that’s not what a true friend does. Back in Sunnysville, I tried to understand your life...but I didn’t ‘get’ you. Ya know? Hell, I was being such an ass with Gene. Bet he didn’t even know what was really going on, huh?”

Marvelous Man shook his head, while Gemini stared up at him. In the space of a nanosecond, a thought whispered in his mind. Was it wrong that he never said a thing to Gene about his relationship with Gemini?

“No, not really,” he replied.

Gemini walked towards the cherry blossom tree and laid his back against the bark. His cybernetic eyes briefly wandered up at the tree’s pink canopy before flicking back down at his hands. The gentle pounding of the bulky Soulem’s fists against each other continued.

He sighed, “And then...after you called me out on my shit. It didn’t exactly click, cause all I felt was broken...inside. I ran back to my dad. Hoping to fix my pain. But all he did was try to explain love and stuff. That it’s not like those movies and books and whatnot.”

The fist pounding ceased immediately. Gemini grasped his elbows as if he were hugging himself, while mood rings on his cheeks turned a deep blue. Teardrops began to form at the edge of his eyes.

“And that’s when I got the call about your...disappearance. You were gone for two whole days, and...it was...I was terrified. I couldn’t stop thinking about you, and whether you were alive or not. So that’s when I thought about if you never came back. I just...I’m not sure if I could handle that. Just a world without you, Justice,” said Gemini.

He paused to wipe his eyes of the tears.

The Soulem smiled, “And then a miracle happened! You came back. It was at that point that I realized it didn’t matter if we weren’t boyfriends. I just wanted to be with you. I-in your life, I mean. Being friends with you was the best thing that ever happened to me.”

Stepping away from the tree, the robotic being gazed up into his overly-muscular friend’s eyes. The bulky Soulem’s mood rings flashed to rose red, while his face became serious. His arms shifted; one drooping down while the other held onto the relaxed elbow.

“A-an-and! I know that all that stuff I did and how it hurt you...I know we can’t ever go back to being how we used to be. Things are different now, and I get that...but that doesn’t mean we can’t go back to being friends again. Maybe not on the same level, but we can still try to get close to that, right?”

Marvelous Man felt stunned at what he heard. His friend’s disposition seemed to have flipped on the opposite side of the spectrum. The muscle demigod knew his friend was right...but he could not help but feel guilt at what happened. It was a mix of both feeling like he enabled his friend to have bad behavior and also hurting Gemini’s feelings.

The hulking bodybuilder smiled, “Yeah, I forgive you. And I honestly do want to be friends with you again.”

The Soulem’s mood rings flashed the color of sky blue.

“Great! But, uh, just so you know...I’m still a work in progress. I’ll still be an asshole, but I’m trying to be better. Just call me out on it, okay? Can’t keep using my new body as an excuse for what I do,” grinned Gemini.

Marvelous Man nodded, “I will. I’m just glad we could patch things up.”

“But, ummm, Gene and I aren’t a couple,” he corrected.

Gemini’s mood rings became grey, “Huh?”

“He broke it off with me,” said Marvelous Man, “He realized he couldn’t love me the same way I loved him...it was for the better. I’m pretty sure I’m the one that’s supposed to have a broken heart, and, uh, I still kinda do. But I think he was more broken up about it than I was.”

The bulky Soulem paused for a second; his face projecting dumbfoundedness.

Gemini’s mood rings shifted to white, “Oh...You okay?”

“I think so. He said some things that put it into, uhh, perspective. I wasn’t any better than you when it came to love,” sighed Marvelous Man.

He mentioned, “Plus, I kinda went through some traumatizing shit that having a wrecked love life isn’t so bad.”

The robotic being looked away.

“Oh, right...the kidnapping,” recalled Gemini.

Marvelous Man slowly nodded, “Yeah, that...and some stuff that happened after…”

“Did you want to hug it out and cry about it?” suggested the Soulem.

The musclebound superhero smiled, “Naw, I’m all cried out right now. And I think I sorta reached some state of numbness...again. If that makes sense. But...I think I could use a close friend to talk about all this heavy stuff.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

“Wow...that’s some heavy shit right there,” remarked Gemini.

The two friends sat at the bench beneath the blooming cherry blossom tree. Marvelous Man stared out at scenery beyond the roof’s metal fence.

He sighed, “Yeah.”

“But why do you call your opposite healing power a poison? I mean, you know what it means, right?” commented Gemini.

The muscle demigod looked down at his friend. A part of him wanted to explode in the frustration of being questioned. Apollo had trained him in the ways of medicine and drilled into him the many facts of what is poisonous, toxic, venomous, etc...But he knew it would not do good to be so volatile at a newly repaired relationship.

Marvelous Man’s eyebrow flexed in confusion, “Uh, yeah, I do.”

“Just saying, it’s more of a venom than a poison, cause you’re directly inflicting it on someone,” said Gemini.

Marvelous Man corrected, “That’s only when you’re injecting it into someone. Mine is more like...a secretion.”

“Eh, having that dark power stab into people’s eyes to cause mental trauma sounds more like a venom. Besides, it sounds cooler,” shrugged the Soulem, “Oh! You should call it, Soul Venom!”

The hulking bodybuilder giggled. He had missed moments like this. Events where he and Gemini just hung out as Justice and Gemini to talk about random things. Stupid things. Things that were childish but always had an odd depth to it. Even if it came down to talks of what color would they want grass to be. Or if the fetishism of creating a Soulem version of oneself and having sex with it is masturbation.

Marvelous Man hummed, “That does sound cooler.”

Seconds ticked by in silence. Neither being moved, as cherry blossom petals danced in the breeze. The mood rings on Gemini’s cheeks slowly changed to purple.

“So...you have a unique celestial element, huh? And it’s supposed to help you win against the Skeleton Lord?” questioned Gemini.

The muscle demigod nodded, “Yep. But it was more like I had a better chance of winning if I figured it out what it was.”

“And it’s a virtue type of element, sooooo that’s gonna be harder to figure out,” noted Gemini.

Marvelous Man sighed, “I guess. And it’s connected to my parents’ own celestial elements. My mom said it was a seed...whatever that means.”

“So we got war, love, and...light? Or is it medicine and athletics?” said the bulky Soulem.

Marvelous Man replied, “Heh. My dad just considered himself as complex. But I saw him as more of an art god when I tried to put a label on him.”

Gemini’s mood rings flashed orange.

“...How the hell are supposed to figure it out with such a mixed bag like that?! War isn’t even a virtue! It’s the opposite if it were trying to be in the same category somehow,” he grunted.

Marvelous Man shrugged, “I dunno. Maybe if we tried to see the good side of it, it’d make more sense.”

“And just what positive aspect do you see in war that isn’t connected to the profiteers of it?” said Gemini.

Marvelous Man looked at the ground, “Well...maybe...I dunno...passion? Like, people only go to war to protect the ones they love and their nation. And love is, like, a chemical reaction for people to fight harder or just keep going at something regardless of difficulty. And it’s when it gets harder that a person refuses to give up.”

Gemini looked at his friend with a stupefied look for a moment before staring out at the scenery. The color within his mood rings shifted back to white.

“It’s so weird how you have such a unique perspective to things. It even shows in your fighting style. Well, either that or you just like being super extra...But even though what you said is a complete stretch, I wouldn’t say you’re wrong. True virtue is being able to give your own positive feedback no matter the challenge. Kindness instead of wrath and whatnot,” he replied.

The Soulem continued, “So something that is connected to love, passion, and...art. Feels like it should be something super easy to figure out. But it’s like when you’ve looked over something you didn’t feel was important that when you really need it, it’s just not there. Sooooo...I dunno, soul? Since the soul can be linked to emotions and all. Seems like that’s what it is given how your powers seem to work with the venom and supercharge.”

The muscle demigod thought about what his robotic friend said. It almost sounded like it had made sense...but his instincts told him that was not the answer.

“Naw, it doesn’t feel like that’s what it’s supposed to be,” frowned Marvelous Man.

Gemini sighed, “Well, shit.”

The uncomfortable silence made its way back; filling the void of unsaid words. Marvelous Man felt he was going in a spiral that was slowly going down to an unfortunate end. Every time he tried to find a way to break from the pattern or forget about it, the feeling would always pull him back in. Ugly and numbing emotions would creep back in; never doing anything but always making themselves aware since the second encounter with the Skeleton Lord in the subway.

It had been easy to immediately ignore such nasty things back then. But after his confrontation with his parents...the emotions had now started to pounce on the musclebound superhero. And with every second he was aware of them, they would gnaw at the core of his optimism.

Marvelous Man needed to be rid of such things. He gambled everything on his friend. If not being about to exterminate the vermin feelings, then at least Gemini could help take some weight off of the negative emotions. His lips trembled.

“Have you...ever wished you didn’t exist?...Or maybe...that people would be better off without you? Maybe even the world?” he asked.

Gemini immediately glared up at the hulking bodybuilder. His face was completely flabbergasted, while his mood rings flared a bright yellow.

“WHAT?! NO!,” exclaimed Gemini, “Justice, why would you say that?!...What’s-are you alright? Bro, where’s this thinking coming from?”

Marvelous Man looked away, “It’s just...I don’t know...something I’ve just been thinking about for a little while...maybe even more since shit went down…I know I try to stay happy, but it’s been getting pretty hard right now. All I feel now when I’m alone and just thinking is guilt.”

“ And...well...It’s cause it feels like all I’ve done so far is make everything worse for everybody else. And now...that feeling of not being able to shake off the bad stuff just keeps coming back. It’s like, it doesn’t feel fair that I’m alive when so many people are dead. Even when they’re not completely innocent or something, I’m not sure. I’m going through a lot of stuff so fast my head is just flying off and I don’t know how to feel anymore other than considering...not...existing,” he continued.

Gemini placed his hand on his friend’s shoulder, “Bro, are you feeling like that right now?”

“I guess…” shrugged Marvelous Man.

Gemini spoke, “Take a deep breath right now, okay? Just do it.”

It was an odd request from the Soulem, but the hulking bodybuilder complied. Taking in a deep breath of air, his meaty pectorals slightly expanded. Marvelous Man’s pecs then deflated back to their normal state upon exhalation. The muscle demigod could not explain how, but it felt as if the stress he was carrying had been slightly relieved.

“Now listen, it’s okay if you want to think that, but don’t ever believe in it. We can’t stop the thoughts we have and should just go through all the, ya know, processes of it. But it’s dangerous if you give thoughts like that the power to become truth, okay?” lectured Gemini.

The Soulem continued, “I know a lot of crap went down. And whether you were part of it or not, it still would’ve happened. Those homeless people still would’ve died back at the subway and the crack den, but you were able to stop the Skeleton Lord from causing more harm. Hell, Gene is still alive cause of you. Oh! And those people at the park too! They would’ve bled out if you weren’t there.”

Marvelous Man thought back to those events the Soulem listed. His friend was not wrong. Things could have gone a lot worse if he had not been there to heal his friends and the innocents. And now that he thought about it, if he had not been kidnapped by the PB&J Gang, the Skeleton Lord might have arranged Gene to be kidnapped instead.

“I guess you’re right,” he nodded.

Gemini spoke up, “Yeah, I am. I mean, you even managed to befriend Sugar Skull and bring him into the D.A.B.! Who else but you can do that? Though I think he might not be happy right now with Puzzles ‘stern talking to’ if ya catch my drift.”

“And even if you weren’t Marvelous Man right now, you changed people for the better as Justice. Look at your parents. They’re...well...the stories always projected them as batshit insane gods, but you talk like they’re overbearing parents that love you too hard!” he exclaimed.

The Soulem threw his hands up, “That’s a complete one-eighty if I’ve ever heard one! I know you said and did some things to them, but I’m sure they’ll come around if you give them some time.”

Gemini paused for a moment; his mood rings turning pink.

“And, well...I met you by chance. We became great friends, and you helped awaken me by being there for me. Maybe things didn’t turn out so well after that...but in the end, we made up...just right now though, heh…” he babbled.

Gemini sighed, as his mood rings turned white.

“My point is, your very existence makes all the difference and don’t you forget it. The positive things you provoke in people may be small compared to what you expected, but it all carries the same weight. Even if it’s as small as being their friend or even getting someone to try a new thing. And superhero or not, your existence inspires change in the people around you,” he said “But look, I’m no therapist, and I really think you should see someone about this. I’m currently pulling therapy articles from the internet for what you’re probably dealing with as we speak, but all I’m doing is putting a band aid on the situation.”

Immediately after Gemini’s speech, the entire simulation shook with the intensity of a strong earthquake. While lasting for only two seconds, the quake was vigorous enough to upset the Soulem’s balance. Gemini fell forward, as an overly-muscular arm reached out to him.

Marvelous Man leaped upward and swept his arm around his robotic friend; catching Gemini in the process. Steadying the Soulem upright, the musclebound superhero’s thoughts shifted from concern of his friend to the quake. His mind quickly pieced together that there must have been some outside force to cause such shaking.

“What just happened? Was that an earthquake?” he said.

Gemini held his fingers against his head, “Not sure. Give me a sec. Scrolling through social media.”

The Soulem’s metallic eyebrows furrowed. His eyes seemed to look glazed over, as he streamed through data. Seconds after, he blinked his eyes back into focus. Gemini’s face expressed only horror, while the mood rings flashed to a bright yellow.

“Oh my gosh...no no no nonononono…” he muttered.

Reaching into the brown satchel strapped over his shoulder, Gemini pulled out a glass smartphone. He tapped on its glowing screen a few times before holding it up next to his face. The Soulem turned away from the muscle demigod; pacing back and forth in a frantic motion.

He mumbled, “Come on, come on, come on! Please, oh, please pick up.”

Gemini came to a sudden stop, as his face was instantly washed over with shock and then relief.

“Dad! Oh my gosh. Thank goodness, you’re alright! Why aren’t you at work today?...You got the flu? Oh, thank fuck that happened...S-sorry, Dad. I-I’m just really scared right now, but at least you weren’t at work today...It’s-I’m, uh, not sure how to say this dad. There was an explosion at the Arkos Division, and it was so powerful that it just shook the D.A.B. headquarters right now...No, I’m fine…I love you too, dad...” he rambled.

Marvelous Man’s eyes went wide upon hearing Gemini’s side of the conversation. He felt himself nearly reacting to what he heard, as a telepathic message interrupted him. The musclebound superhero heard his field analyst’s voice.

Fairuza announced, “Gene, Marvelous Man, please report immediately to the Director’s office. If you spot Gemini on the way, please bring him. I tried contacting his phone, but it’s busy.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

“Seven minutes ago, an explosion occurred at the Arkos Division headquarters,” reported Puzzles, “It is not yet certain if it was an act of terrorism, but it was most definitely an attempt to distract us heroes.”

“And the reasons as to why we know this is because at the same time of the explosion, our magical alarm wards placed around the Skeleton Lord’s fog had detected a spike in activity. A monster and two humanoids with undead features have been seen exiting the fog. A, uh, pardon the term, skeleton crew of drones and police officers placed there have been able to stop the intruders. Recordings of the intruders have yet to be released.,” he continued.

Director Skye sighed, “We were lucky so few appeared. Any more than those three, and we definitely would have to send over some body bags.”

Sugar Skull shuffled about in one of the office’s cushy seats.

“What happened to the invaders?” questioned the ghoul.

Puzzles pawed at his tablet, “They were immediately killed. The humanoids were armed with firearms. Once they aimed their weapons at the police, law enforcement attacked in self defense. The monster was also killed. Assumed to have been caught in the crossfire of bullets. Let’s see...no bodies were found. Upon death, the suspects had instantly disintegrated and left behind a distinct bleach odor.”

Sugar Skull concluded, “Which is what the creatures of Limbo smell like. Uh, ummm...OH! Guaranteeing that the fog really is a gateway for the Skeleton Lord to exit through.”

Marvelous Man felt both of his hands being grasped, as he felt nausea begin to overtake him. The surprising, tight sensation caused his queasiness to recede. Within each hand, the muscle demigod held Gene and Gemini’s hand. A warm, rubbery feeling in one clutch, and a soft hand that emitted flecks of anger underneath concern in the other.

Elbows on the desk with fingers intertwined over each other, Director Skye leaned forward. He closed his eyes momentarily, as he exhaled a long, audible sigh. His eyes then flicked up at the team members; scattered about in either seats or standing in the center of the room.

“Without collecting all the conclusive evidence, it’s too early to arrive at that kind of destination...Sadly, I am inclined to agree with you, Mr. Skull. I cannot ignore such a coincidence to occur soon after our earlier meeting,” said the master witch.

The soft closing of a book echoed in the tension-filled office. Marvelous Man looked down to see Fairuza recently finished running a magical scan with her book. The field analyst had an apprehensive look on her face, as she shifted in her chair.

Fairuza slowly raised her hand into the air, “Director Skye, sir, I’m afraid I have some more bad news. It’s about the explosion at the Arkos Division headquarters.”

“...And what foreboding information have you discovered?” said the Director.

Fairuza disclosed, “Multiple casualties discovered so far, and the explosion caused half of the facility to collapse. It’s unsure how many more are buried underneath the rubble. Survivor injuries has ranged all the way to critical. Medigel they have present had been greatly reduced due to the explosion and only have a handful on hand. Paramedics arriving soon.”

Fairuza swallowed. She had a pensive look on her face. Her eyes gazed downwards as if she were carefully choosing her next words.

“I was able to scan the area and find the login information of a security guard for their cloud’s security feed...They will no longer be needing it. Um, in any case, I’ll be accessing their cloud right now. Director Skye, where can I broadcast?” she finished.

The Director’s hand began to glow blue with magic, as it casted multiple gestures at his wall-mounted paintings. What had been colored brushstrokes on the canvases were now a black screen with a runic symbol illuminating in the center. With the magical alteration complete, the master witch pointed at his modified painting with an opened palm.

She gave a slight bow, “Thank you, sir.”

Setting her yellow book on her lap with the front facing down, the mystical field analyst placed her index finger upon the center of the hardcover’s back. The tip of Fairuza’s finger began to softly radiate with magic. She then traced her glowing finger in a circular motion; causing the back book cover to shine a small magical seal.

Fairuza then lifted the cover; revealing a square gap sliced into the page. A glint of a shiny object gleamed from the tiny chasm, as it rose up into view. The object exposed itself to be a crystal sphere made of an indigo rock that was freckled with white patches all over. The rising then stopped, as a pedestal made of paper could be seen holding the crystal ball.

The crystal ball seemed to be perfectly sized for Fairuza’s palm, as she cupped her hands around it. Fairuza’s hands glowed a faint blue before the magical energy seeped into the indigo-colored sphere. The mystical field analyst stared into her crystal ball, as the enchanted painting’s image across from her flickered. With the runic symbol on the canvas completely dissolving, the login page of a website took its place. Fairuza continued gazing into her magical sphere, as the blank boxes of the login page had begun to fill with text.

Everyone but Marvelous Man turned to the screen. The musclebound superhero kept switching attention from the screen back towards the mystical field analyst; confused by the interaction of magic with technology. Marvelous Man bent down to whisper at Gemini.

“Ummm…” he asked, “So how is she…?”

Gemini explained in a hushed tone, “There’s a computer chip in her merlinite crystal ball. And with the runes grafted inside the ball to interact with the chip, she can affect technology. But the magical capabilities of that can’t hack the government or anything. It’s more like a magical universal remote.”

The mystical field analyst slowly exhaled. Her hands slightly trembled, as the skin stirred. The moving skin split open; revealing eyeballs flickering about before focusing on the orb. Marvelous Man flinched at the sight, while everyone else continued casting attention towards the painting.

“NGHUH!” reeled the musclebound superhero.

Gemini clarified, “She’s fine. I guess the inside of her crystal ball is laced with spells to multiply her consciousness. I wonder what it’s like to look at 4 different screens with one mind...FYI, each of her eyes are a copy of her mind. Can’t imagine what her migraine will be like after the fact.”

Seconds passed before Marvelous Man managed to force his gaze away from the disturbing eyes breaching from Fairuza’s hand. Turning his stare towards the magical painting, he spotted a new update to the canvas. The screen had transformed into four different camera feed screens; each one fast-forwarding through a timeframe before skipping to another scene. Marvelous Man tried to watch, but the images moved faster than he could comprehend.

Fairuza continued scrying her crystal ball in silence. After a minute had flown by the fast-paced images turned to black. The eyes on her hands then began to shut; withdrawing into her body. With the last magical eye closed, Fairuza looked up from her crystal ball.

“It wasn’t an accident,” she said with a neutral tone.

The Director inquired, “By whose hand?”

“A man in Aztec-styled clothing. Putting him on screen,” Fairuza replied.

It had been too much of a coincidence to think someone else would be running around in such a specific style. Marvelous Man kept his mouth closed; it was obvious who it would be but did not want to assume. The musclebound superhero continued watching the black canvas, as he gripped the arms of his jacket.

The black painting changed its image; shaping into another recording. The camera feed showed two lab-coat workers standing in front of two glass pillar-like containers with unrecognizable technology attached to parts of it. The glass structures held two figures within; obscuring their faces by huddling down with their faces casted at the ground.

As the scientists were making their rounds with checking on the computers attached to the containers, an unseen force pulled one of them back. The yanked scientist then bent himself backwards; standing on the tips of his toes as if possessed by an evil spirit. The neck’s left side of the attacked scientist then split open, as blood started to spurt from the wound like a sprinkler. The other scientist stood in motionless shock at the scene in front of her; unflinching even after being bathed in the splatters of her coworker’s blood.

The male scientist was then released from the invisible grasp and landed flat on the floor. As it happened, a figment began to materialize next to the downed scientist. It started reconstituting as feet; tanned as dark as mocha. The building blocks of the visible being continued construction of the legs with the edges of a red cloak that was outlined with teal. As the materialization created a red-knotted loincloth with a teal outline, the musculature of the mysterious being appeared to be slim like a professional athletic runner. The man came armed at that time, as a bow and quiver came into visibility and slung over the shoulder. The entirety of the head and face was covered; topped with a snake-shaped wooden headdress like in the Aztec illustrations Marvelous Man had seen in world history textbooks.

Sugar Skull crossed his arm, “So the watchdog has come to collect.”

The video paused, as the Director looked towards the Limbo being.

“You know him?” questioned Director Skye.

The ghoul nodded, “That’s Itzcóatl. He’s one of the Skeleton Lord’s guardians and right hand man. He showed up at the Skeleton Lord’s newest hideout when I rescued Marvelous Man. He’s a hunter that hides in the fog like a shark.”

“And to make him more annoying, he can become, ummm, invisible. The Bruja also told me his quiver is enchanted to make copies of his arrows. Haven’t fought him yet but seeing this shows he’s probably the most deadliest out of all of them,” added Sugar Skull.

The rabbit demigod released his hand from Marvelous Man’s, as he turned to face the ghoul.

Gene frowned, “But how did the Itzcóatl manage to invade the Arkos Division headquarters? The building should have been warded to detect the magically invisible.”

As Sugar Skull opened his mouth, he was interrupted by an electronic voice.

“Not if that guardian’s power is supernaturally-based rather than a mutation. They’re a superhero company based on only science. And because they’re so sure their machines can detect and quarantine magic, that they refuse our help or even do basic warding. It’s why their supernatural captives keep breaking out, and their machines are very limited at detecting the various frequencies magic has. Until it’s figured out what the base frequency of magic is, they can only detect the handful of spells or supernatural powers made public,” sighed Gemini.

Puzzles spoke up, “Fairuza, continue the footage.”

Everybody turned their attention back towards the magical painting, as the security recording resumed. Itzcóatl pulled out a dagger with a black blade that appeared to be made of obsidian glass. The guardian pointed his weapon at the injured scientist before switching the dagger’s attention to the female scientist and then towards the glass containers. The footage did not seem to have any audio recording capabilities, as the female scientist nodded while mouthing a reply.

With shaky hands, the female scientist placed her face in front of one of the containment unit’s computers. The device appeared to be an apparatus designed for eye-scanning identification. Upon completing the process, the Arkos Division worker typed away at the keyboard. The glass container reacted to the input by melting a rectangular doorway on the side of itself. The female scientist then ran to one of the drawers lined against the wall and opened it. Pulling out what she needed, she scurried over to her bleeding partner.

While the worker was applying what appeared to be a salve from a soft tube onto her partner’s wound, the prisoners within the confinements exited the two glass containers. Marvelous Man recognized first one; Zareb, the African guardian of the Skeleton Lord who commanded electricity with the twin axes. The other was a knight, who was defeated before the musclebound superhero arrived at the scene.

Zareb raised his hands into the air; his hands wiggled about as if it were calling out to something. Black smoke similar to the fog ebbed from his forearms and flowed into his hands. The whisping miasma then shapeshifted into Zareb’s iconic axes. Clanging them together, the runes grafted onto the enchanted weapons glowed. Lightning emanated from the magical axes; shocking nearly everything in random arcs before striking the recording camera. The camera feed became black, as the lightning shot into its eye.

“My best guess is that Zareb, the Skeleton Lord guardian with the lightning axes, caused some sort of negative reaction with his continuous voltage and...triggered an explosion. Until we know more, that’s all I can say,” reported Fairuza.

The Director questioned, “And who is the knight? What exactly can he do?”

“Other than wielding a glaive-type lance, I don’t know, sir. But he’s not as dangerous, if he was captured so easily,” replied Fairuza.

“Not unless he wanted to be captured. Same goes with Zareb,” said the master witch, “And what about our guest?”

Puzzles stated, “Gilgamesh is still on ice, Boss. Not taking chances with this one. He’s tried a couple of times to get out whenever he’s been thawed for questioning, but our wards have made sure to keep him caged. We’ve also made sure to enchant the time capsule spell he’s in with a curse to put the freeze on anybody that didn’t undo the spell properly.”

“Good. With the Skeleton Lord’s muscle out of the game, it’s made things easier for us. Double down on invisibility jamming spells. I do not want that ghastly rat getting in here at all,” said Director Skye.

Puzzles bowed, “Yes, Boss!”

“Gene, you go to the fog entrance and be on standby. Until we get barriers up, you’ll be the first line of defense against the invading ghouls and all those Limbo monsters,” commanded the Director.

Gene nodded, “I acknowledge.”

“And take Sugar Skull with you. Maybe this time, he can actually benefit us,” added the master witch.

Sugar Skull placed his hand over his chest, “Ah. I’m touched.”

“Marvelous Man, I need you to head over to the Arkos Division and help the injured folks with your healing abilities. Use that expansive healing of yours. The supercharge one. If anybody is alive under the rubble, it could be their only life support until they’re rescued. Gemini, you go with him. See if you can dig up any information in regards to...well, anything. I suspect you and your father’s relationship with the A.D. could give you some leeway in attaining such,” ordered Director Doug.

“Yes, sir,” said Marvelous Man and Gemini in unison.

The musclebound superhero felt pride course through his body, as he remembered what Gemini said to him earlier. He might not be able to save everybody, but he can make a difference in saving some lives. It was time to focus on what he can do and give it his all.

Director Doug leaned forward; fingers interlaced with one another. A bead of sweat began to form on the master witch’s brow. He gave a quick sigh before looking up.

He declared “Mark my words, people. This is only phase 1 of what is about to come. Dismissed.”

Next Chapter

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Hanugumo

Dang. >.=.<; I thought Sugar Skull said thatit could be 3 weeks or something till the Skeleton Lord would come back. But it's like he is already back or almost back seeing how his forces are assembling and trying out the defenses of our Superheroes. 8S

 

And also: Justice and everyone else really can't get some time to fully process everything that happened huh? >.=.> *chuckles* Probably cause these are the final chapters of book 1. xD lol

I am a little disapproving of that place that blew up though. They are so freaking stubborn and cocky. >=( They should have accepted help, they knew their tech wasn't good enough. Yet still they thought they could truly contain those 2. Well: Let's hope they learned their lesson. >=(

 

Also: I loved that interaction with Gemini. ='3 This is such a big step in the good direction for them. <3 And it is the best thing for Justice & Gemini to start out as friends again and grow their relationship from bottom up again. ^^ <3

I also loved the part where both Gemini and Gene both held MM's hands. ='3 So great. <3

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EcchiMultiverse
18 hours ago, Hanugumo said:

Dang. >.=.<; I thought Sugar Skull said thatit could be 3 weeks or something till the Skeleton Lord would come back. But it's like he is already back or almost back seeing how his forces are assembling and trying out the defenses of our Superheroes. 8S

 

And also: Justice and everyone else really can't get some time to fully process everything that happened huh? >.=.> *chuckles* Probably cause these are the final chapters of book 1. xD lol

I am a little disapproving of that place that blew up though. They are so freaking stubborn and cocky. >=( They should have accepted help, they knew their tech wasn't good enough. Yet still they thought they could truly contain those 2. Well: Let's hope they learned their lesson. >=(

 

Also: I loved that interaction with Gemini. ='3 This is such a big step in the good direction for them. <3 And it is the best thing for Justice & Gemini to start out as friends again and grow their relationship from bottom up again. ^^ <3

I also loved the part where both Gemini and Gene both held MM's hands. ='3 So great. <3

Well, sure...with the Skeleton Lord. But with the door wide open into the realm of the living, who's to say that somebody won't waltz in from the other side lol Eventually, a whole bunch will try to get out and it'll get pretty bad.

 

Pretty much! I gotta wrap that shit up! lol Besides, he'd probably get some crippling PTSD if he had a moment to process. And that's not something you can solve with just a few days of therapy...unless you're a shitty writer with no tether to reality XD

 

Probably not. People can do the most insane things and still not learn a damn thing from it. Though I suppose someone would get the idea to just secretly ward their jail cells and such before getting the bad guys transferred to prison or something. That reminds me, I gotta work Octomentist into the story again cause she wasn't caught in the blast at that time, so she's gotta pop up again just to make things fair.

 

Thanks X3 Talking with you made me think twice about how their relationship should be handled and how real people deal with bad relationships and such. Hollywood shows such bad lessons in the ways of love. You shouldn't force your feelings onto others until they wear down and love you back. Neither should you be dissatisfied at going back to being friends or starting over again after things went sour. It felt more special to me that Gemini considered Justice's feelings and truly wanted to go back to being friends and be there to support Justice. He still hopes it'll become something more, but he's just happy to be in Justice's life again. And that hand holding thing was a bit unintentional, but it felt right as well cause it shows that Gemini is truly understanding Justice. And maybe that Justice should choose Gemini ;3

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Hanugumo
On 27-9-2017 at 4:54 AM, EcchiMultiverse said:

Well, sure...with the Skeleton Lord. But with the door wide open into the realm of the living, who's to say that somebody won't waltz in from the other side lol Eventually, a whole bunch will try to get out and it'll get pretty bad.

 

Pretty much! I gotta wrap that shit up! lol Besides, he'd probably get some crippling PTSD if he had a moment to process. And that's not something you can solve with just a few days of therapy...unless you're a shitty writer with no tether to reality XD

 

Probably not. People can do the most insane things and still not learn a damn thing from it. Though I suppose someone would get the idea to just secretly ward their jail cells and such before getting the bad guys transferred to prison or something. That reminds me, I gotta work Octomentist into the story again cause she wasn't caught in the blast at that time, so she's gotta pop up again just to make things fair.

 

Thanks X3 Talking with you made me think twice about how their relationship should be handled and how real people deal with bad relationships and such. Hollywood shows such bad lessons in the ways of love. You shouldn't force your feelings onto others until they wear down and love you back. Neither should you be dissatisfied at going back to being friends or starting over again after things went sour. It felt more special to me that Gemini considered Justice's feelings and truly wanted to go back to being friends and be there to support Justice. He still hopes it'll become something more, but he's just happy to be in Justice's life again. And that hand holding thing was a bit unintentional, but it felt right as well cause it shows that Gemini is truly understanding Justice. And maybe that Justice should choose Gemini ;3

That is true. xD But still, i didn't know any residents of Limbo could use that "door". Or are all of them under Skeleton Lord's control? x3

 

Hahahahaha, that is definitely true. xD Can't cure PTSD just like that. x3 But not even a day after MM returns the next crisis is about to happen? Isn't that a little bit much for someone like MM to process either? xD lol I mean: Did his body fully recover from what happened in Sunnysville? And is he even in the right state of mind to go on a mission? ^^;

 

And yeah. Why did no one ward the jail cells in secret? =/ I mean: Any bit of extra security should be accepted and used with extremely dangerous prisoners like them. =0 But nope, the people there were too cocky and had too much confidence in their technology. >.=.>;;

And maybe you can make Octomemtist come to the HQ for shelter as well? Or will the HQ be attacked in the next parts? =0 Than that could get too dangerous. =0 Or is there a sort of underground bunker where people could go to when something like that would happen at HQ? =3 <3

 

Well: I'm glad that I could help with that. ^^ <3 <3 It's difficult to write accurate relationships between characters, especially ones that the characters want to patch up and start over with. Though I do know 1 thing: Relationship can never really start over. There are always feelings left behind from the first time. That was what happened between me and my ex. =( He and I broke up the first time with a fight that was pretty bad. Similar to how Justice broke up with Gemini. But than again because he wanted to have a polyamorous relationship between him; me and someone else, we eventually grew apart again. And he started to love the other more and broke up with me again. While a few days later he was dumped by the other guy because of the same reason. ^^;

So please let Justice and Gemini be monogamous during their relationship as of now. ^^;

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EcchiMultiverse
On 9/28/2017 at 1:15 AM, Hanugumo said:

That is true. xD But still, i didn't know any residents of Limbo could use that "door". Or are all of them under Skeleton Lord's control? x3

 

Hahahahaha, that is definitely true. xD Can't cure PTSD just like that. x3 But not even a day after MM returns the next crisis is about to happen? Isn't that a little bit much for someone like MM to process either? xD lol I mean: Did his body fully recover from what happened in Sunnysville? And is he even in the right state of mind to go on a mission? ^^;

 

And yeah. Why did no one ward the jail cells in secret? =/ I mean: Any bit of extra security should be accepted and used with extremely dangerous prisoners like them. =0 But nope, the people there were too cocky and had too much confidence in their technology. >.=.>;;

And maybe you can make Octomemtist come to the HQ for shelter as well? Or will the HQ be attacked in the next parts? =0 Than that could get too dangerous. =0 Or is there a sort of underground bunker where people could go to when something like that would happen at HQ? =3 <3

 

Well: I'm glad that I could help with that. ^^ <3 <3 It's difficult to write accurate relationships between characters, especially ones that the characters want to patch up and start over with. Though I do know 1 thing: Relationship can never really start over. There are always feelings left behind from the first time. That was what happened between me and my ex. =( He and I broke up the first time with a fight that was pretty bad. Similar to how Justice broke up with Gemini. But than again because he wanted to have a polyamorous relationship between him; me and someone else, we eventually grew apart again. And he started to love the other more and broke up with me again. While a few days later he was dumped by the other guy because of the same reason. ^^;

So please let Justice and Gemini be monogamous during their relationship as of now. ^^;

Sorry it took me so long to answer! Some things were going on in my life this week...

 

Maybe it's more like the Skeleton Lord announced there was a door and left it there. But in a sense, they are under his control but not mind controlled. Just probably being told to cause some ruckus and the ghouls were fine with it and whatnot lol. Perhaps the ghouls are also pushing monsters through on purpose

 

Probably not, but when you're constantly distracted you don't have time to think about the bad stuff to put you in an episode. And he's stable enough to be a supporter but maybe not a fighter...

 

People can be pretty stupid just to try and show how much better they are than their competitor. That's basically what happened lol

 

I think I know where to make her show up, but it'll be pretty brief lol Yeah, there are bunkers to evacuate to, but I don't think I'll be showing it off in this story since Marvelous Man isn't hiding.

 

To be honest, what I'm writing is sort of a wish fulfillment. I do want to believe that people can start over and be for the better. Though it does take work and Gemini admits that he still needs to be called out on for his behavior but he will try to be better. But realistically, they usually turn out like yours...though without the polyamory most of the time. So yeah, they're definitely monogamous X3 But they wouldn't be opposed to 3somes lol. I still like to imagine Gene and Gemini fucking Justice's brains out XD

 

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