Homewrecker
by Robert Buchanan


The wind was blowing in from the sea today. Carrying with it a slight tang of saltiness. A particularly strong gust blew a drop of water against my cheek, which I unconsciously wiped away. When you live near the bay, you get used to things like this. It was unseasonably cold out, only in the upper 50's, I love SF, but I have to admit, I am fond of warmer climates.

I yawn and stretch, it's a lazy Sunday morning, and I've been getting entirely too much sleep lately. I decided to get up around 10 and walk down to the piers. The jaunt through Chinatown was the usual maze of tourists, the odor of cooking oil was strong, and the trinket merchants were already out in full force, old men smoking their pipes and trying to hock their pieces of junk to the hapless tourists who seem to flock to the area even moreso on the weekends. The same shops, the same people - tourists, and quite frankly, I was bored - scratch that, I was bored. I've been in a rut lately and the criminals in town have been inordinately quiet. Hell, I've even taken to creating small slicks of oil beneath pretty girls feet just so they'll slip and fall and I can catch them to receive the obligatory thank you that comes along with such minor rescues. I wandered by a particularly colorful merchants stand and glanced over out of habit more than anything else. Will wonders never cease? There amid the Chinese yo-yo's and wind chimes was a small display of Omega dolls - Excuse me, action figures, dolls are girls toys, these were definitely meant for boys and hence had earned the distinction of "action figure" as if somehow that made them more manly. Omega dolls, complete with the Nike logo emblazoned across a tag proclaiming "$2.50 - Just Do It."

"What the hell," I thought. I reached into my pocket and created a five and handed it to the man tending the shop.

"I'll take an Omega," I proclaim as I pick up a 4" toy. The old man smiles at me and nods, momentarily removing his pipe as he takes my money and puts it in the register.

"Keep the change," I say as I walk away. I'd feel bad if I took his $2.50 knowing full well that in a matter of time, the five I created will just return to the ether. After all, that would be stealing right?

I pocket the doll and walk away, with the old man grinning at me. OK, so the doll's for me. I, like 72% of the nation - according to the latest poll - am an Omega fan. Who the hell couldn't be after Ireland? The Cornhusker just had a certain style that was hard not to like.

I'd feel bad about my deception, but I know the old buzzard will rip off about 300 tourists today, so he can spare $2.50 for my admiration of a national icon.

So I wander the early Sunday streets of San Francisco, Hoping, almost praying for something to happen. I was feeling the itch again to prove myself. I don't know why I feel these urges, I already know I'm the best. One of the spirits in my head chides me for this vanity, but screw him if he doesn't like it! I mean, let's face it, in the asskicker realm, I've got the market cornered. Except maybe for Omega.

A plan begins to form in my head. Hell, it's Sunday morning, I've got some time coming to me from work and I've heard Omega likes to wrestle just for the fuck of it. I wonder if he'd like to test himself against a real opponent? L.A.'s just a quick flight down the coast I tell myself, although I've never tested my flight ability for that great of a distance before.

"Shit," I mutter to no one in particular. "It sounds like I've got the beginnings of a plan." I smile and quicken my step a bit already excited by the possibility of not only meeting the real life "action figure" but knocking the crap out of him to boot! I stop by the Library and ask for a Los Angeles phone book. I'm directed to a large section of books. "Which one?" I ask.

The librarian, a cute brunette, replies "all of them."

Fuck L.A.'s big. It takes me about 30 minutes to pour through the books to find the address I'm looking for. I manage to get a rough idea of where Omega's home is in relation to the city from a quick search on the Internet. I even manage to get an aerial view courtesy of archived U.S. satellite pics. Big Brother's watching. That oughtta help me find the place.

An hour later I'm back at my apartment in Chinatown tying up a few loose ends and preparing for the trip. The Spirits, while not as pumped as I am, are willing to go along with this "nonsense" for the time being. Honestly, I think some of them just want to witness the energies surrounding a hero of Omega's class. Either that, or they want to see a real life Hollywood hooker. I guess that's the drawback to living in the bodies of Chinese monks for all those years, not many Hookers make housecalls on monasteries these days.

I teleport to the roof of my building and take to the air heading straight up as fast as I can. I love flying, it's one of the coolest things I can do, teleportation is nice, but frankly it's like walking through a door from one place to the next. Flying on the other hand appeals to such a primal desire, I never get tired of it, and talk about an enigma? I have no idea how I accomplish this feat. People are puzzled by the aerodynamics of the bumblebee, well, how about good old fashioned flying people? I seriously doubt anything's less aerodynamic than a person in flight. I hightail it to the coast and upon reaching it begin following it south. I use the clouds to cover my flight from any observers and decide to really test my speed. It occurs to me that I've never really been able to go all out when I'm in the city, While I could probably handle the impact of a building, I sure as hell wouldn't want to have to explain the Spirit Shout shaped hole I'd leave behind.

I push myself to the limit and am amazed at just how fast I'm able to travel. It only takes me about 3 hours to get to L.A. maybe I should head down this way more often? Did I mention L.A.'s big? The city sprawls across Southern California like a concrete desert, and everything looks the same from the air. The aerial photo I was so proud of myself for finding is pretty worthless. I fly over the city 3 or 4 times trying to locate Omega's, but it's no use. I finally get frustrated and teleport to the ground behind some bushes in an area I think is fairly close to my destination. It's starting to get close to dinnertime so I find a small restaurant and head inside.

A Mexican joint, and this far south, it's likely to be pretty authentic considering the neighborhood I'm in. I walk in and look around. The first thing I notice is that I'm the only 6' green eyed cracker in the restaurant. I get enough stares to make me wonder if I'm in costume. It's a seat yourself joint, so I scope out the nearest table and park my ass in the seat. A cute waitress scurries over and places some chips and salsa on the table - standard fare for any Mexican place in America. She takes my order and returns with a beer a few moments later.

I sit back and take in the local atmosphere while I suck on my beer and await my dinner. Not the finest restaurant in the world, but I've certainly eaten at worse. There are about 50 sombreros adorning the ceiling attached by some invisible means, and bright colors are everywhere I look. As I scope the room, I notice two young Latino's walk in, the rough and tumble look about them. One of them wears a black bandana on his head and both look like they're in pretty good shape. They look around the restaurant and walk over to the waitress. The one in the bandana whispers something to her, and I think I see a metallic flash from his hand. She quietly leads him to the back of the restaurant and his friend stands in the doorway they just walked through facing the restaurant patrons with a tough look etched on his face.

I look out the window and notice a black sedan parked in front of the door. "Great," I mutter, "a friggin robbery. Can't a guy get something to eat around here?" I sigh audibly and get a dirty look from the man in the doorway. At least they're being low key about this, none of that "Everybody, on the ground now!" bullshit. I remain reclined in my booth and take another sip off of my beer nonchalantly and smile at Robber #2. I marvel for a moment at my ability to sense danger, you'd think it could be as simple as one of the spirits yelling in my head "Hey, look out!" but they like to be more subtle most of the time. Oh, sure, occasionally they'll warn me of impending doom, but more often than not, they simply like to steer me into dangerous situations and see how I handle things. I realize now that my senses have been going off for a few minutes now, but I was so preoccupied with my quest for food that it didn't occur to me that that feeling in my stomach might be anything more than hunger.

I sigh a bit and put my beer bottle on the table and stand up. The tough in the doorway shifts a little bit as I walk by him.

"Gringo," he calls after me, "where you think you're going?"

I look at him with a casual look and reply, "Bathroom, you know - cerveza!"

He smiles like a dope and just waves me by him. I proceed to the bathroom and close the door, I hear the sound of something being slid in front of it, presumably to keep me in here. I look around the tiny room, a one-seater, good thing I'm not Spiderman, changing in here would really be a bitch. I look down at my body and my clothing shimmers and changes into my black and blue spandex. I close my eyes and concentrate and suddenly grow in size as my musculature grows to even more heroic proportions and my chi encircles my body. All of this may be overkill, but I'm not risking taking a bullet from one of these assholes. I'd heal the damage, but those damn things sting like hell!

I will myself outside of the restaurant just behind the sedan, right in the driver's blind spot. My teleport isn't too far from the mark, and I catch a brief glimpse of the driver, he's just a punk, maybe 18, if that and too busy watching the door to the restaurant to even vaguely notice me. I wave my hand and phosphorous suddenly grows in the seams of the doors, another wave ignites it momentarily and welds the doors to the car shut with a puff of smoke. The trapped kid begins pulling at the handles, but to no avail. Before he can try to drive off, I wave my hand a final time and fill his gas tank with flour. Instantly the gasoline becomes a sticky sludge incapable of moving any vehicle.

I walk toward the door slowly and re-enter the restaurant. There's a booth parked in front of the bathroom door. Apparently the punk didn't want me to leave the tidy bowl man unattended.

"Yeah, I ordered a taco for delivery about an hour ago, and I haven't gotten shit yet!" I bellow loudly as I enter the room. If I got stares the first time around, this time, people are gonna nail their eyeballs to me.

"What's happening little man?" I ask.

He looks scared enough to shit himself and turns around to go through the door to the back. I teleport in his way and say "What? No chit chat? Where's the camaraderie?" I place my hands on his shoulders and he attempts to remove them, but before he can, I send him sailing across the room and into the booth in front of the bathroom door. I just tossed him lightly, but apparently it was a bit harder than I anticipated as the booth, and the robber slide about 8 feet across the floor. The kid just lies there breathing heavily. Surreally, no one in the restaurant has gotten up, they just sit there and watch the show. "No autographs," I say to the emotionless faces before me.

My banter is cut short as a gunshot rings out behind me and the bullet goes skipping off of my back. "Fuck that hurts!" I say as I turn around, silently thanking my spirits for the chi armor. The black bandana clad thug has come from the back, he's standing there, holding a pistol, and a look on his face says 'Oh shit!' he stares at me, open mouthed as I rub the spot on my back where the bullet impacted. Instinctively, he grabs my waitress and holds the gun to her head. Damn, if I don't save her, I'm not gonna eat tonight.

"Back off you freak!" the kid shouts I sigh and look to my left, his buddy's still out cold.

"Alright," I say, "I'll back off." He nervously licks his lips and smiles as I turn and walk out the door. Once outside I hear him laugh nervously and I teleport back inside, right behind him in fact. I reach out and tap him on the shoulder. He turns around smiling and I say simply "Hi there," beaming him a smile of my own. A second later, I deliver a palm strike to his nose that breaks it in a single shot, and I notice that his smile is dropping off his face almost as fast as he's dropping to the floor.

"You ok honey?" I ask the waitress. She nods, but seems to have a 'deer in headlights' look about her. I think she's still trying to figure out what exactly happened. The manager comes hopping out from the back, duct tape around his ankles, he's managed to free one of his hands and he uses it to put his arm around the waitress "Are you ok Consuela?" he asks her. Again she gives him the nod. I hear sirens in the background and say "Well boys, that's my cue." I teleport back into the bathroom and transform back into my travel clothes.

"What the fuck is going on out here?" I say as I push the door open. All the heads in the restaurant turn toward me in unison. "What?" I ask them all. They've just seen some serious shitkicking, and I think I may have overloaded them. I shrug and return to my seat. "Can I get another beer here?" I ask.

******

The police were fun; it took them 30 minutes to get the kid out of the welded shut car. They said they didn't want to break the windows for fear of injuring him, so they had to cut the car open -damn prisoners rights. It drew quite a crowd, and everyone applauded when they got him out, but he went straight from one cage, to another as he was handcuffed and pushed into the back of a squad car with his friends.

Well, that wasn't Tommy Champion, that's for sure, but it's the most action I've seen in a few weeks. Which is really lame, beating up street punks is not exactly my idea of a challenge anymore. To make matters worse, the manager closed the restaurant for the night after the foiled robbery, so I didn't even get to eat. Yeah, I know I don't need to eat to survive, but I really love Mexican food, and besides if I never ate, people would eventually begin investigating me, and I really don't want to deal with that publicity bullshit - not yet anyway.

It's about 8:00 now, and the heats starting to seep out of the sidewalk as the city begins to cool off. I stop several strangers on the street and eventually find myself walking up the street Tommy's house is on. Not a bad neighborhood, but what would I expect from the golden boy of Nebraska? If I had the fat checks Nike was sending his way, I'd probably spring for a beach house too. One of these days, I really need to look into this sponsorship business.

I'm about a block from Omega's house when I see a white limo pulling away from the curb in front of his home.

"Dammit!" I say aloud. I wonder where he's going? I contemplate following him, but decide that that's a bit too much of a stalker for me. Hell, I'm already bad enough hightailing it to L.A. to try and pound on the guy. I decide to scope out his house, I've come all this way, I could at least check out how the other half lives. It's a kick ass place, I can see why he lives here. About an hour passes and I hear a car engine as the limo returns. I grin and head around to the other side of the house to make my entrance, I haven't really planned this part 'Um, hi, I'm Spirit Shout, wanna fight?' probably isn't going to go over very well with the guy.

My concerns of what to say are blindsided as he steps out of the back of the limousine. Wrapped around him is a gorgeous brunette, they're both laughing and I'm pretty sure they've been drinking, well, it is Omega after all, that's not much of a shocker. Even in their semi-drunken state, it's pretty obvious what their intentions are for one another. Jesus he radiates magic like crazy! Honestly I'm amazed he doesn't sense me, maybe he does, but he sure as hell doesn't seem to care - somehow I doubt I would either in his shoes. Man he picked her up fast! Maybe that's just another perk of being a celebrity... I gotta look into that!

I consider making my introduction and just as I'm about to wander over to them, the woman sticks her hands down the front of his pants. Well, there goes my plan for now. Not that I want to touch any of Omega's "secret no-no places", but you just don't pick a fight with a guy who's about to make hot monkey love - even if you're just wanting to roughhouse. It usually ends in someone taking things way to seriously, and I really don't want Tommy Champion that pissed at me.

I decide to give the twosome some privacy before I'm discovered and I teleport down the street. Looks like I'll have to find a hotel for the night.

I manage to find a vacancy in a Motel 6. I figure out just why they leave the light on for you. When the lights go off, the bugs come out. I try to turn in early, but I've got too much pent up energy to pass out for the night. I climb out of bed and at the urging of the spirits, I practice for about an hour, ending with a light stretch routine. I'm still wired as hell.

I flip on the TV, nothing decent on, but I do manage to catch a late newscast. They cover my little escapade at the restaurant, but of course there are no pictures, just a few low-key locals seeking their spotlight. I'm described as everything from a muscular teleporting freak, to Omega himself. I chuckle and flip the channel. You gotta hand it to this place, they do have a porn channel - real first class joint. I watch for a bit and pass out around 1am.

******

I awaken to the sound of a roll of toilet paper hitting the floor, I rub my eyes and halfway sit up. There's a woman - a member of housekeeping presumably - standing in the doorway, cart behind her, jaw adrop. Apparently, the L.A. heat caused me to kick off the sheets in my sleep, and I like to sleep Au natural, so I'm displayed just as the way I was when I was born.

"Come in, or leave, but either way, close the door please," I say to her great embarrassment. She turns her head in politeness, staring at the floor.

"I'm sorry sir!" she says weakly. "There was no answer when I knocked and check out was an hour ago, I just assumed you had left!" I think I see her peeking at me out of the corner of her eye.

I smile and stand up, grabbing my clothes. "Ah, I understand, don't sweat it," I say while tugging on a pair of pants. She coyly backs out the door apologizing as she goes, I notice a smile in addition to her flushed cheeks.

"Hey, what time is it?" I ask her retreating form.

"Noon sir," comes the reply as she closes my door.

Crap! Noon! I didn't realize it was so late, I meant to head to Tommy's earlier. Fuck, I'm sure he's already at Nike, but who knows? I take a very quick shower, redress myself and head over to his beachhouse.

I mentioned L.A.'s big right? Well, it's hot too. I pull on my clothes and immediately wish I hadn't, it's the kind of heat where you wish you could just stay at home and hang out in the fridge all day. But nothing, not even 90-degree humid heat is stopping me from getting my beat down today. I take to the streets and cruise on over to Tommy's house again. About block away, I find a side alley and my clothing shimmers into the black and blue Spirit Shout costume. I bulk up and encase myself with chi energy preparing to make my grand entry. Hey, If I'm gonna meet one of the premier metas in the U.S. I want to look my best after all!

I arrive at the beachhouse at about 12:30 and notice a dark car parked outside of his house, it's nothing fancy, certainly not something Omega would be caught dead in though. I get a little closer to it and I notice it's got a custom plate "DANG3R".

"Cute" I mutter.

My heart drops a bit, I don't see the limo parked out front anywhere. If I missed him again, I'm gonna be pissed. I didn't come all this way to break up "date night in the barrio" and flash some fucking maid, where's the action?! The house is dark inside but I decide to try the door anyway.

I have absolutely no idea what I'm going to say still, but I make my way up the walk and rap three times on the door, a nervous feeling of danger in my stomach, that's encouraging, the big guy must be here for me to sense anything.

No answer.

I wait a few moments and knock again when a voice startles me from off to my left.

"He ain't home," it intones.

I turn to my left and sitting there is one of the biggest guys I've ever seen in my life. He's a black guy, maybe in his late 20's and not a hair on his head. He's wearing a white muscle shirt that's probably a 2x and barely able to stretch around his chest. His arms are probably the size of most guys' legs, and he doesn't look very happy either.

Before I can say anything he says, "Get in line."

"What are you talking about big man?" I ask him.

"I assume you've heard that Omega's lost his powers? If so, get in line, you can have anything that's left after I'm finished with him." He flips a cigarette butt into the bushes and flexes his impressive amount of muscle attempting to intimidate me. In spite of his show, I'm not frightened. Honestly I'm too surprised at the news of Omegas loss of ability to give a rat's shit about this steroid-abusing freak.

He gets to his feet and scowls at me. "That ok with you?" he asks as he jabs a finger into my chest.

"What if it's not?" I ask him "What do you have against the guy anyway?"

"Let's just say he owes me twenty grand." He continues to invade my personal space in an intimidation move. Jeezus, this guys been eating shit sandwiches for breakfast. "And I've been waiting a long time to collect."

I wave my hand in front of my nose and say "Damn buddy, you've been popping halitosis pills by the minute while you've been waiting haven't you? Haven't you heard of a toothbrush?" He's not amused by my banter. "What's your name anyway?"

"I'm Dangerous. I don't care if you want to kick his ass or kiss it, if you're not out of my face in the next thirty seconds, I'll be inspecting your prostate with my foot."

If Tommy's really lost his powers, he doesn't stand a chance against this guy, and if I wanted a test of my abilities, I'm certainly staring at it.

"Well Dangermouse, I hate to break it to you, but I'm not ok with your little plan. How about you leave now, and I don't put you in a bodycast?"

I seem to have touched on a nerve as he doesn't even bother to respond, he throws a right cross and narrowly misses me as I redirect his blow and step around his body to end up behind him.

"You sure you want to do this?" I ask.

He responds by twisting his own body around and catching me in the shoulder with a backfist. I'm lucky he wasn't a little higher. It was a clumsy strike, but still, the blow's hard enough to send me backward and through one of the pillars supporting the front porch.

Man they grow em big down here in L.A. I'm gonna have to be very careful that he doesn't land anything solid, or even with my shielding, I could be coughing up a kidney.

I shake my head and regain my footing, stepping over the destroyed support.

Dangerous stands there with a cocky grin on his face and says, "I'm sure. Just who the hell are you to Omega anyway? Are you his cousin, or his lover?"

I flip him the bird and lower myself into a back stance.

"Obviously you've been OD-ing on Creatine powder and protein shakes, bring it big boy!"

He's dumb enough to rush me coming in for a waist lock in a clumsy wrestling move, I'm sure if he could land his hold, I'd be in a world of hurt, but I've trained for this sort of attack hundreds of times. My instincts kick in, and I sidestep his rush, grabbing him by the shoulder and wrist as he passes by, I add the momentum of my own considerable strength and toss him effortlessly through the brick wall of Omega's home.

I see movement coming from the pile of bricks in Tommy's great room as Dangerous regains his composure and rises from the rubble. He's learned a little from that encounter, he's less sure of himself now and approaches me cautiously this time. I step over the remains of the wall and into Tommy's home. Dangerous throws a one-two combo and I manage to lock both of his punches into a sticky hands routine. He tries to slide through my guard, but each time, I am able to maintain my lock.

"C'mon sissy boy," he says. "Stop trying to hold my hands and lets scrap!"

I can tell he's getting pissed off at his inability to hit me, so I egg him on a bit. "Aww, but come on Dangermouse, I hear you put out on the first date!"

I punctuate my insult by slipping through his guard and surprising him with a strike to his jaw I hear a satisfying crack. I think I may have broken a tooth judging by the sound. I also manage to slip a left to his breadbasket and sidestep as he doubles over momentarily. Never one to miss an opportunity I bring my knee up in an attempt to clock him one in the jaw and put him out of his misery.

But this time, I'm the one who's surprised as Dangerous recovers and sweeps my leg out from under me sending me crashing to the floor. In a second he's on top of me, his fist comes crashing down toward my face, I manage to wriggle to the side and instead, he connects with the ground and I hear a crack as the foundation gives in a little to the punch that would have managed to put out my lights.

He's heavy, and his mass is making it tough for me to breathe and he knows it. He grins down at me as a trickle of blood escapes his parted lips and wraps his massive hands around my throat. "Stupid... punk... it's... over..." he says. I smile back at him and try to respond, but his grip is making it difficult to speak.

Enough of this bullshit, I don't think this moron has any intention of letting go, so I focus my energies on the far side of the room and teleport myself behind him. I arrive near the door to Omega's bedroom and watch amused as Dangerous falls into the space where I was. Damn I wish I could see the look on his face.

"Nighty night Dangermouse," I say as I unleash a white hot bolt of chi energy squarely into his back. The resulting force knocks him over face first and end over ends him through another wall in the kitchen. I notice what appears to be a very large spider skitter out of the way as Dangerous careens through the house. He comes to rest near the sink and lies underneath a pile of rubble. Fuck we've done a number on the house! Tommy's gonna be pissed! I came down here for a friendly sparring match and ended up totaling the guy's home! I hear the roof groaning. It appears we've knocked out a load-bearing wall. I'm not sure how much more of this the house can take.

I gingerly walk toward the kitchen creating a pair of handcuffs as I go. They're not likely to restrain this gargantuan, but it sure as hell can't hurt. I make my way to the rubble and see an arm sticking out from under a pile of bricks. It quickly becomes apparent the handcuffs won't even fit around this monsters wrists. I toss them aside and grab his arm and begin to tug him toward the door. I don't particularly care for this guy, but I'm sure as hell not going to let him get crushed by the house if it collapses. I can already feel my body repairing the damage I've taken from his hands on my throat.

Without warning, Dangerous leaps to his feet bellowing a loud roar. I'm totally taken off guard and he manages to tackle me, we're actually airborne for a few feet and when we hit the sand, I notice it's suddenly gotten darker than it was before.

"What the fuck?" I say as Dangerous lands on top of me. I'm fighting for life and limb, but I'm not so oblivious that I don't notice the fact that the cream shag carpet has suddenly turned into sand. Dangerous uses my disoriented state to really land a solid blow. I momentarily see stars, and then the reality of our situation must hit him as well since he stops pounding on me and looks around for a moment. It appears we're on a beach together, only something's not quite right - other than the fact that we should be in Tommy Champion's house. The sky looks somehow "artificial" and behind Dangerous, I can see the inside of Tommy's house still. Before I can ponder this, I notice some kind of large squid, if that's what you could call it. The damn thing's about 6 feet long, not including it's fucking tentacles It's walking toward us much like a spider. It's an awkward walk, but it still manages to move pretty fast. Dangerous doesn't like it. He slams me into the sand and gets off of me heading toward the spider-squid.

"You want a piece of me?! C'mon you..." He points a finger at the creature, but it just blinks one of its eyes in response. Dangerous makes a run straight toward the squid and suddenly I see a greenish black surge of energy surround him and he drops to the beach like a bag of rocks. Another surge of energy surrounds him and he vanishes. I guess he'll eventually learn to stop trying that maneuver

"Great! Fucking aliens!" I say as the mushroom looking squid is joined by about 30 or so smaller mechanical spiders. I can't help but notice that they all bear a striking resemblance to the one I almost creamed when I blasted Dangerous through the kitchen wall.

I prop myself up into a kneeling position using one arm as the creature turns to face me. I'm on a beach that's covered in pristine white sand, the ocean is behind me, but the sky is just a little off, I'm not sure if it's real or not. Then it hits me, there's not a single animal here, no seabirds, no sounds of tourist traffic, hell, not even a biting fly, absolute solitude.

The larger creature stops and speaks to me. "I am not alien. I am Wedge, and this is my home. You are not welcome here, so I will ask you to please leave now." I'm not in Kansas anymore. Something about this thing makes me want to get the hell out of here. Maybe it's the concept of being faced with walking calamari, or maybe it's the 30 or so spiders that are surrounding it with glowing energy weapons, or maybe it's the fact that it dropped Dangerous like it was swatting a fly.

"I'd love to get out of here, but first off, where the hell is 'here' and second, how the hell do I get out of here?!" I answer

"I told you; 'here' is my home and you can leave the way you entered." It points a tentacle behind me toward Tommy's house. I turn and it appears I'm looking through a pane of glass into the ruins of Tommy's beach house. I was right about a load-bearing wall; it seems the house has collapsed now.

As I'm looking, I feel a push at my back as the squid places a tentacle on me and pushes me through the 'window'. Much to my surprise, there's no sound of breaking glass, just a momentary feeling of disorientation and I'm suddenly standing on what's left of Tommy's front porch. I see Dangerous' form lying in the bushes off to my right. I turn around to look for the squid, but he's gone; behind me I see only the street. I hear sirens in the distance they seem to be approaching rather quickly and it would seem that discretion is the better part of valor, so I take to the air. I'm guesstimating that it's about 2 o'clock on Monday at this point, I promised my boss I'd just take a day off, so I have work tomorrow.

I sigh audibly and head back toward San Francisco. I really need to look into that sponsorship gig someday.
 

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