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X-treme Wrestling Federation »   » Archives » Fire and Ice II - Double Cross 2023 RP Board
FAMOUS LAST WORDS
Author Message
The Blue Tango Offline
HERO



XWF FanBase:
Some of everyone

(cheered; very rarely plays dirty but isn't lame either; many likable qualities)


#1
11-18-2023, 11:51 PM


The camera sweeps across Grand City.


Nightfall.


Skyscrapers stand tall under twinkling stars.


The city breathes.


Alive.


Electric.


Cut to a towering skyscraper.


Zoom in — fast.


Edge of the building.


Two figures emerge from shadows.

[Image: Bat-Tango.png]


Atomic Bat. Blue Tango.


Superhero poses: ENGAGED!


Atomic Bat moves forward, her cape catching the wind


"Citizens of Grand City, as the night falls, we stand vigilant, ever watchful over this city that we have sworn to protect. But tonight, we address you not just as your guardians but as the XWF Tag Team Champions."

“And as champions, we once again stand in the glaring spotlight, facing our next challengers, Bobby Bourbon and Mark Flynn."

"Ah, Bobby, ever the showman with your flamboyant attire, attempting to dazzle us all with your wardrobe choices. But let's cut through the facade of you prancing around in a dress trying to make a statement–here’s the real statement– it’s not what you wear that defines you it’s what you do in this ring, and when it comes to teamwork, no duo yet has matched the prowess and unity that we bring as champions. Your style might turn heads, but it's our combined strength and skill that have kept us untoppled and at the top."

“Then there’s the mismatched piece to this challenging puzzle, Mark Flynn, the epitome of a wrestling tragedy. A narcissist, a murderer, a sociopath– a man whose very presence in the ring is a stain on the very sport that we dedicate our lives to. Flynn, you’ve walked these halls with the arrogance of a man who believes he’s above it all, just as you admittedly walk a tight rope between genius and madness, but understand this, Flynn – every action has its reckoning, every story its climax. We believe in redemption, but it's earned, not given. At Fire & Ice, Blue Tango and I will be the force that balances the scales. Your debts, long overdue, are about to be called in, and we're here to ensure you pay in full.”

“And if that No Good Bastard, Bobby Bourbon, believes allying with Mark Flynn is his golden ladder to the pinnacle of success, he's sadly mistaken. Bobby, you're in for a harsh jolt back to reality when you discover that aligning with Flynn is akin to boarding a train destined for nowhere. You see, Flynn is notorious in this sport, not just for his skills but for his ruthless ambition. He's the sort of competitor who wouldn't hesitate to trade his very soul for a taste of victory, the kind of man who views his partners not as allies, but as stepping stones and threats. He’s known for his cutthroat tactics, willing to go to any lengths, even if it means betraying those closest to him, should he feel their light shining potentially brighter than his own."

"It’s a dangerous game you’re playing, Bobby, hitching your wagon to a star that's more likely to implode than to illuminate your path to glory. Mark Flynn might be a formidable wrestler, but he's also a wildcard, one whose actions are guided by self-interest and ego rather than loyalty or teamwork In the high-stakes world of the XWF Tag Team Division, trusting someone like Flynn could be your biggest gamble yet, and not one that’s likely to pay off."

"In the ring, when the lights are bright and the crowd is roaring, you'll find yourself standing next to a man who's as likely to undermine you as he is to fight alongside you. And at Fire & Ice, when you face us, you'll realize that your so-called alliance is nothing but a house of cards, ready to collapse at the first sign of real challenge. Bobby, aligning with Flynn might just be the biggest mistake of your career, a miscalculation that we intend to exploit fully as we defend our titles and prove once again why we are the true champions of the XWF.”

“But let’s shift the focus away from the ‘slapped-together tag team of the moment, to where it truly belongs – on the reigning, defending, near undefeated champions: Atomic Bat and Blue Tango. In our short time here, we’ve carved a path through the XWF that’s nothing short of legendary. Me? Undefeated in singles action. Us? A team that has redefined what it means to dominate.”

“Every team that we’ve faced, every challenge that we’ve conquered; has been a testament to our unbreakable bond, our unparalleled skill, and the kind of heart that champions are made of.”

"But our journey hasn't just been about winning matches; it's been about setting a new standard, about redefining excellence in the tag team division. We've taken on all comers, faced down the toughest opponents the XWF has to offer, and emerged not just victorious but stronger, more synchronized, more formidable with each and every bout. We have an unspoken understanding, a shared vision of what it means to be champions, and inside of those ropes, we truly work as one."

"We've transformed every challenge into an opportunity to showcase our unparalleled teamwork, turning the ring into our stage, and each match into a masterclass of strategy, agility, and raw, unrelenting will to win. We've become the team that others aspire to be, the benchmark against which all are measured."

"And as we stand here today, looking out over the city we've sworn to protect, we do so not just as guardians of justice but as custodians of the prestigious XWF Tag Team Championship. We don't just hold these titles; we elevate them, infusing them with honor, respect, and an unyielding commitment to excellence."

“In this world of psychos and killers, it takes more than just talent to stand at the top, it takes unwavering comradery, hearts that beat in unison– something that Bobby and Mark could only dream of!”

“Sure, Flynn and Bourbon are talented. They’ve both had very long careers with plenty of moments in the spotlight, but talent alone doesn’t make a team.”

“Mark Flynn is Chris Page 2.0. Way better all around, sure, but a little less going on upstairs. It's a good thing he actually IS talented, because, otherwise, all of that focus on his ego would go to waste.”


As Tango interjected, the Atomic Bat couldn't help but notice that he was dialing and sliding around on his phone during most of her monologue so far.  She chose to ignore him and continue.  A smile plays on Atomic Bat’s lips as she continues.

“What WE have is something that can’t be forged overnight, something that can’t be faked or forced–something that is completely out of the wheelhouse of a team such as Bobby Flynn.”

“Two weeks. Two weeks for Bobby and Mark to prepare to face a united front.”

“No amount of training, no last-minute bonding sessions, not even the most heartfelt pinky swears can replicate what we’ve built. You see, a real team– and I suspect Bobby already knows this – is more than just two individuals sharing the ring, it’s a unit that moves as one, thinks as one, and fights as one, that THAT is the essence of Atomic Bat and Blue Tango.


As the Atomic Bat finished her statement with a tight, leather fist in front, Tango smiled and entered back into the moment.

"Well said, AB!  Well said!"

Atomic Bat looked at him with a roll to her eyes.

"Oh yeah?  Have you been listening?"

Tango looked down at his phone, realizing how it looked.

"Oh!"  He said looking around. "Of course I have!"

"What have you been doing?  The phone?"

"Right, right," he continued to fumble around.  "It's nothing, just doing some research."

"On our opposition, I hope."

"For sure!  Well, sorta!"

Tango pulled his phone back up and showed Atomic Bat his screen.  He then dialed,

1-800-BASTARD

"Are you being serious?"

He pressed send and immediately a recording played back to him.

"We're sorry, but the number you have dialed has been disconnected.  Please hang up, dial an operator, or try again."

"Pffft.  Figures."

Atomic Bat stood with her arms folded, tapping her boot on the ground.

"And what exactly was the point of that?  Your glutes are fine Tango…"

"To PROVE A POINT, AB!  ………  Hey!"  He paused.  "You really think so?"

Tango took a quick effort to rubber neck around himself to his leather clad behind.

"Ugh!  Just…  what point?!"

Tango's shoulders slouch as well as his smile.

"Oh, um..  Oh!  To prove just how bad the state of the XWF is currently in!"

The Atomic BBat said nothing and stood with a blank stare.

"Lemme explain.  BoB.  The Bastards…  all of em.  This message is pretty much a message about them, ya know?"

The Atomic Bat shrugged, contemplating whether or not Tango was being clever or actually interested in the Glutes by Galoots that the Bastards. BoB, were promoting.

"They've been disconnected for, like, years!  After Bobby and Thunder Knuckles lost their titles, they went their separate ways, ring-wise, and have barely touched the tag team division since!  Sure, they went on to see some bigger and better things separately…  TK won the Universal Title from Corey Smith and Bobby won King of the Ring and Leap of Faith.  Then in an awesome-like fashion, it all came back and blew up in his face.  Now, I am not saying that BoB, the Bastards, all of em, ran the roost around here by any means, but they had a presence here.  Combined, they were semi-threatening and at the very least a thorn in someone's side.  Nowadays, Bobby, BoB D, and TK are barely visible and TK and D are two top title holders!  Yall wanna spat about the Tag Team Division being broken, what the heck happened to the top ranks that two guys that were, less than year ago, bottom feeders sit at the top?  It's not just THIS division that's suffering, it's the entire XWF!"

Tango pressed a button on his utility belt and a small slot opened up for him to place his phone.

"Which, in a trickling down effect, we have our current scenario.  After a match that saw close to all former tag team glory in one ring…  After AB and I chased off several other tag team threats.  And after we've been booked in about as many random pairings the XWF can afford…  Instead of drawing two names from a hat or leaving up a sign-up sheet, Vinnie Lane decided to just skim right off the top and take two big former Tag Team Champions and mash them together hoping for the best."

"Bobby Bourbon and Mark Flynn."


"Bobby Bourbon has reverted back to his clown persona these days, or at the very least, on purpose or not, doing an excellent job portraying one.  He's without a doubt top three worst Universal Champion of all time, saving room for Gabe Reno and Chris Chaos because even Bobby didn't affect the XWF Stock THAT bad.  He chased Doctor D'Ville through space and time to lose a briefcase he won in his last shining moment at Leap of Faith.  His incompetence as a tag team partner nearly cost BOB D his Xtreme Championship.  And then last Warfare he showed up to his match against Flynn, Kaye, and King in a dress.  The dress?  Whatever.  To each his or her or their own.  Losing a bet to winning a bet, I don't know, I don't care.  It just backs up any claim anyone has about Bobby Bourbon missing a few key links in his chain.  And speaking of missing a few links…."

Tango dusted off his gloved hands and pointed to the Atomic Bat with double guns.

"We got Mark Flynn!  Now, we can ALL give this guy the credit he deserves.  He's one of the craziest, wiliest, dirtiest, and let's just say it, bestest to ever play the game.  The guy proved he can carry his own weight, cuz he simply disposed of the one helping hand he had around here.  I'm talking about North Korean War Criminal.  The two of them took the tag team world by storm and held onto that world with an iron fist!  But like AB was saying, all Flynn recognized was a threat!  The natural, raw talent and skill that NK possessed, even before Flynn trained him to do a lateral press, was remarkable.  Flynn can take as much credit as he wants in training him and teaching him all he knows, but I'd be a fool to think that NK had no idea how to throw a punch or someone around until he unfortunately met Mark Flynn."

"Even so, even after removing NK from life, Flynn doesn't stand without some kind of backing.  Sadly for him, that backing is the naive Ned Kaye and the way, way, WAY over-confident Isiah King….  Two guys that have already been placed atop the ladder next to us only to get smacked back off of it again.  Face in the dirt with NOTHING to show for it.  And after that….  Horrid display of a melee that was the Three man tag match they had on Warfare…  heh, not much has changed.  And I'm talking from both sides!  If Bobby can't sync up with his own bastard buddies and Mark Flynn remains only about Mark Flynn, what the HECK is Vinnie Lane even thinking?  Is it some kind of joke?  A joke on us?  The champs?!  Did he have a few too many Maui Wowies or what?  I'll agree that we've lacked any true in ring competition since we've achieved our goal to be champions, but that doesn't take from the fact that every time we've been called upon to defend, we have.  We've seen NOTHING but success and have gotten better, stronger, and more in sync after every single victory.  We haven't gone stale.  We haven't become complacent.  We remain at the tippy-top waiting for the next pair of try-hards to improve even more."

"While this may NOT be their first rodeo in tag team competition, this is Flynn and Bourbon's first time riding together.  They've had their battles, so they're not completely out of the loop from each other, but even with their experience with other partners it compares nothing to the unity and respect that the Atomic Bat and I have for each other.  Teamwork and hardwork are two words that fall under our names and we have and never will stop fighting and defending not just the justice of the world, but defending our championships, too….  And speaking of justice…."



[Image: SCENETRANSITION.gif]


[Image: Grand-City.png]

The night air was crisp and the moon cast a silvery glow over Grand City.

Tonight, like most nights, Atomic Bat and her partner The Blue Tango patrolled the streets from above.

As the pair of caped crusaders moved with practiced ease across the rooftops, Atomic Bat glanced at Tango, noticing the subtle change in his demeanor tonight.

The events of the past months had left their mark on both of them, especially after Tango's encounter with Toxicity's cocoon. It had changed him, made him stronger, faster, and a little short tempered, but it also changed him in ways they were still trying to understand.

"Are you doing okay there Tango?"

"Yeah, I'm good. Don't worry about me, AB."

His attempt at reassurance felt hollow, causing her to eye him more closely. And as she did, the moonlight revealed more than he likely intended. His skin was unusually pale, and there was a faint sheen of sweat under his cowl.

"You sure? You seem a bit… off tonight."

"I said–I'm good!" His voice was laced with anger but lacked its usual confidence.

Luckily for him, their banter was cut short as Atomic Bat's keen eyes caught sight of a shadowy figure tampering with a car below.

[Image: SlimJim.png]

"Hold that thought, we’ve got company!"

Swooping down, they landed gracefully near the parked car. The would be thief, caught in the act, spun around in surprise, dropping his Slim Jim (*The carjacking tool, not the tasty meat snack–Stan).

As Blue Tango moved forward to confront the man he staggered slightly. Atomic Bat noticed, but before she could react, Tango had already engaged the crook.

"Hey, buddy, that's not your ride," Tango quipped, but his usual bravado sounded strained.

The man by the car spun around defensively. "Hey, I lost my keys, okay? It's my cousin's car. I'm just trying to—"

His words were a ruse. Swiftly, the man pulled out a knife.

[Image: Knife.jpg]

Atomic Bat tensed, ready to spring into action. Yet, she paused, her gaze fixed on Tango. She needed to see if he could handle this, to gauge how much he was hiding from her.

Tango moved towards the thief, but there was a noticeable delay in his reaction. His attempt to disarm the man was clumsy, and the thief easily sidestepped, swinging his fist and connecting solidly with Tango's abdomen.

Tango doubled over, gasping for air.

Atomic Bat's protective instincts surged, but she forced herself to wait a split second longer, torn between aiding her partner and allowing him to face this challenge.

But the fight was already over.

The thief, seeing Tango's collapse, seized the opportunity with a sinister glint in his eyes. He brandished his knife, preparing to finish off the weakened hero.

Atomic Bat acted swiftly.

With a flick of her wrist, she launched a Batarang.

[Image: Batarang.jpg]

It struck the thief's hand, knocking the knife away and clattering onto the pavement. The would-be assailant, now weaponless and startled, quickly turned and ran into the dark shadows of the night.

Atomic Bat wasted no time—She rushed to Tango's side. "Tango! Tango! Talk to me!" she urged, her voice filled with concern.

His eyes fluttered open. "I... I don't know what happened. I just... felt so weak." He said in a whisper.

Atomic Bat's heart pounded in her chest. This physical weakness was both new, and alarming.

"We need to get you back to HQ. We need to figure out what's happening to you."

As she helped him to his feet, Tango leaned heavily on her, his strength completely gone. "I'm sorry, AB. I thought I’d be fine…"

Her expression softened. "You don't have to be so strong all the time, Tango. It's okay to need help."

Together, they vanished into the night.


Later that night.


Atomic Bat burst into the headquarters, the old metal doors clanking loudly behind her. Tango is barely conscious and slumped heavily into her. “Harlot!” She yelled urgently.

Harlot came rushing into the room, her face etched with concern at the sight of Blue Tango. “What happened?”

Atomic Bat shook her head. “I don’t know.” Together, they managed to get him onto a medical bed. “He just collapsed.”

“You think this has anything to do with Toxicity’s serum?” Harlot questioned as she prepared a needle.

“If I were a betting bat, yes. I need you to find out for sure.”

Harlot nodded and carefully drew a blood sample from Blue Tango. “I’ll analyze it immediately.”

Atomic Bat stayed by Blue Tango’s side as Harlot moved on to an array of high-tech equipment. She began the analysis as the screen displayed a complex series of data.

After a tense few minutes, Harlot’s eyes widened. “It’s definitely Toxicity’s serum. It mutated his cells at a molecular level. This is beyond anything I’ve seen before!”

“What does that mean!?” Atomic Bat demanded.

“It means,” Harlot began as she turned away from her screen, “that whatever Toxicity did to him, it fundamentally altered him, and how his body functions. In a lot of ways, he’s similar to you now.”

Atomic Bat’s eyes narrowed: “Similar to me? How?”

“Well, Tango’s cells have been modified, not just to increase his physical attributes, but also to crave specific nutrients. One that I’ve only ever seen in the sample you brought me from the cocoon you found him in.”

Atomic Bat’s expression turned from confusion to horror. “You mean to say, without regular doses of whatever toxin she was pumping him full of…”

“Yes,” Harlot interjected, “without it, his body will start to shut down. It’s as if he’s been programmed to depend on it, and if he doesn’t get it, Tango will eventually… die.”

Atomic Bat clenched her fists, her worry for Tango turning into anger towards Toxicity. “Then we need to find a way to synthesize this compound, or better yet, find a cure!”

Harlot nodded. “I’ll do everything in my power, but this is complex biochemistry. We might actually need Toxicity herself to find a cure, and we have no idea where to find her.”

Atomic Bat’s eyes glinted with determination. “Then we make her come to us.”

Puzzled, Harlot asked, “how do you plan to do that?”

Atomic Bat, deep in thought, finally spoke up. “Toxicity has always been obsessed with Blue Tango. We’ll use that to our advantage to draw her out.”

Harlot’s eyes widened. “Are you suggesting using him as bait? He’s in no condition to defend himself. He’d be a sitting duck.”

“I know the risks,” she fired back, “I can handle Toxicity.”

Harlot sighed. “But moving Tango in his condition is dangerous. Executing your plan would mean revealing the location of our headquarters. That could bring more danger to our door.”

Atomic Bat took pause. She knew that Harlot was right. Revealing their location could have serious repercussions. However, the urgency of saving her partner's life was paramount!

“You’re right, of course… But we’re slim on options. If revealing our location is the only way to save Tango, then it’s a risk that we’ll have to take. We’ll just have to be ready for whatever comes next.”



Famous Last Words


The night had settled over Grand City, its darkness a veil concealing the less than savory activities.

In a dim and narrow alleyway, two criminals were huddled around a pile of stolen goods: purses, wallets, and jewelry.

Mark: “I still don’t like this, Bobby. It feels wrong.”

Bobby: Yeah, well, desperate times, Mark. Just grab the loot and let's get out of here.”

Their conversation was abruptly cut short when Atomic Bat emerged from the shadows. “Not so fast, boys!”

Her sudden appearance sent a jolt of fear through them.

Mark reached for a knife. “It’s that stupid Bat! I’m not going back to prison!”

But Atomic Bat was quicker.

She effortlessly disarmed him and sent him crashing to the pavement.

Bobby tried to run, loot spilling from his arms, but Atomic Bat caught him swiftly, pinning him against the wall.

Within moments, both thieves were subdued, laid in a heap cowering in fear.

As they realized that they were soon to be turned over to the police, the thieves' survival instincts kicked in, and they turned on each other.

Mark, pointing at Bobby: “You should take that guy and let me go! He’s the real criminal! He’s been running illegal games down at the docks!”

Bobby: “What!? No! This guy's way worse! He’s been hijacking trucks on the highway!”

Mark: “Liar! Hey, Bat! He’s also been fencing stolen art! He’s got a whole warehouse full of it!”

Bobby: “Hey! I stole those Oreo Cream art pieces fair and square!”

Mark: “Oreo Cream 'ART'! Do you hear this, Bat!? He’s mad!”

Bobby: “The world doesn’t appreciate good art until the artist is dead, Mark! That’s Art 101! All of those Tisha Cherry Cookie Cream pieces will be worth millions once I off her!”

Mark: “SEE! SEE!”

“ENOUGH!" Atomic Bat finally interjected. "I’m not here for your petty crimes! I want you to tell Toxicity that Atomic Bat is looking for her!”

The criminals looked at each other in confusion and fear.

Mark and Bobby: “Who!?”

Atomic Bat towered over the cowering criminals. “You two are part of the criminal underground. Surely you’re familiar with Toxicity, the same Toxicity that once threatened ecological disaster if the Mayor didn’t cancel plans to build a new rail tail?”

Mark: “We don’t know any Toxicity! We’re small-time! Honest!”

Bobby: “Yeah, we just lift wallets and stuff. We don’t mess with the big leagues!”

Atomic Bat leaned in closer as her eyes narrowed. “Then tell all of your associates. Tell everyone you know! Do whatever it takes to get this message back to her. Otherwise, you’re useless to me, and I might as well hand you over to the police now.”

Bobby: “No! Wait! I know a guy! Real connected like! We used to be partners, but he moved up to the big time, left me here to founder with Mark!”

Mark: “Hey!”

Bobby: “Listen! I’ll tell him! He’ll know how to get a hold of her! I know he will!”

“Good. See that he does.” She straightened up, ready to leave, but paused and turned back to Bobby. “And as for the Oreo Cream Art, and your plans for Tisha Cherry—consider this you’re only warning. Art theft is still a crime, and threatening an artist’s life is FAAAR from petty.”

Bobby gulped, nodding vigorously, while Mark just stared at the ground.

With a final warning glance, Atomic Bat confiscated the stolen loot and disappeared into the night, leaving the two criminals' plans, and possibly their partnership – in ruins.

Mark: “Maybe we should lay low for a while, Bob.”

Bobby: “I can't believe you sold me out...”


LATER THAT NIGHT


On a rooftop high above Grand City, the night was alive with the sounds of celebration.

A group of thugs, led by the cunning Razor and his right-hand man, Twitch, were basking in the success of their latest heist.

Razor: "Easy pickings tonight, boys! This city is just a goldmine waiting for the taking!”

Him and his crew, Twitch and another fella named Sly, all erupted into laughter. They were surrounded by their spoils: bags filled with jewelry, cash, and other valuables.

“Maybe not as easy as you thought!?”

The voice was stern, commanding, unmistakably Atomic Bat’s. The thugs scrambled to their feet, Razor barking orders, Twitch fumbling for his gun, while Bruiser grabbed a metal pipe.

Twitch: “You ain’t takin’ us down, Bat!”

He aimed his gun, but Atomic Bat was a blur of motion. She closed the distance, disarming Twitch with a swift strike. Bruiser swung his pipe, but she ducked under it, delivering a powerful kick that sent him reeling.

Sly tried a sneak attack from behind, but Atomic Bat sensed him, effortlessly flipping him over her shoulder. He landed with a heavy thud on top of Twitch.

Within moments, Razor and his crew were subdued, lying dazed on the rooftop.

“Spread the word. I’m looking for Toxicity.”

Razor: “Y-yeah, yeah, sure thing, Bat! Everyone will hear about it!”

Atomic Bat collected the stolen loot, slinging it over her shoulder. She looked out over the city.

Sly: “You’re just gonna let us go?”

Without turning, Atomic Bat replied. “Consider this a warning. Change your ways, or next time, I won’t be so lenient.”

With those final words, she launched herself off the building, disappearing into the night. The thugs, now recovering, crawled to the edge and looked down in awe.

“She’s no ordinary hero.” Razor muttered.

The group slowly got to their feet, their laughter gone, replaced by a newfound sense of caution. Razor glanced at his crew. “Maybe it’s time we rethink our line of work?”



LATER THAT NIGHT



A dimly lit basement of an old bar, a known meeting place for the city’s notorious gang, The Night Serpents.

At the head of the table, laden with maps and illegal paraphernalia, sat the gang leader, Victor "Viper" Maranzano.

Flanking him were his most trusted lieutenants: "Shiv," renowned for his knife skills, "Bulldog," the muscle of the group, and Big Joe Stealin, whose size was only matched by his notoriety in thievery.

“Tonight, we take over the north docks. The Delta 8 oil shipment, it's ours. We’re about to corner the market on ‘gas station weed’.”

Heads nodded in agreement, but their scheming was abruptly interrupted. A sudden gust of wind extinguished the candles, plunging the room into shadows. From the top of the stairs emerged The Atomic Bat.

“I wouldn’t be so sure of that!”

The Night Serpents scrambled, grabbing for their weapons, but Atomic Bat was already upon them. She moved with a precision and speed that was almost supernatural, swiftly disarming Shiv and sending his blade skidding across the floor.

Viper shouted, his voice tinged with both anger and fear. “It’s the Bat! Somebody, get her!”

Bulldog charged with a crowbar, swinging wildly, but Atomic Bat easily sidestepped, using his momentum to send him crashing into a wall. Big Joe Stealin tried to sneak up from behind, but with a quick spin, Atomic Bat landed a solid kick, sending him reeling backward.

Now standing before a visibly shaken Viper, she demanded, “Tell Toxicity that Atomic Bat is looking for her!”

Viper nodded quickly, fear in his eyes. “Y-You got it, Bat! I’ll tell her, I swear!”

As Atomic Bat turned to leave, Viper called out, “W-Wait! How can she find you?”

Without looking back, Atomic Bat’s voice echoed back, “I'm easy to find. She'll know where to look!”

After she disappeared into the night, the room was silent except for the groans of the downed gang members. His hands trembling, Viper took out his phone and dialed a mysterious number.

“Yeah, it's Viper. I just had a visit from the Bat!”


LATER THAT NIGHT


Following the heat of battle, the night air felt exceptionally cool and crisp atop the Grand City Police Department. The Atomic Bat signal pierced through the night sky. Atomic Bat stood by the signal, her eyes scanning the horizon for any sign of Toxicity.

Suddenly, footsteps echoed from behind.

Commissioner Jim Jordan emerged from the rooftop access.

“Placing a call to yourself?”

Atomic Bat turned to greet the Police Commissioner.

“It’s a beacon, Jim. A beacon for Toxicity. I have to find her, and fast.”

Commissioner Jordan nodded. “You brought in a lot of hot items tonight, but the logs show no arrest associated with any of it. Does that have to do with this too?”

Atomic Bat’s eyes drifted back to the skyline. “Not directly… No…”

“Then would you mind explaining what all of this is about?”

“He’s dying, Jim…”

Jim’s eyes widened in shock. “Who!?”

“Blue Tango, he’s in trouble, Jim. She poisoned him!”

A moment of silence hung between them as Jim processed what she had just said. “So, this is a personal crusade? I thought you were above that sort of thing?”

Atomic Bat nodded as she continued to stare into the distance. “I’ve always fought for justice, for the safety of this city and its residents, but now… Now I’m fighting for my partner, my friend. Toxicity did something to him, and she’s the only one who can fix it.”

Commissioner Jordan stepped closer, his face etched with concern. “Do you think she’ll show up?”

Atomic Bat sighed, a hint of frustration in her voice. “I’ve been here for hours, Jim. Nothing yet, but I have to keep trying. She’s the only chance we have.”

Jim nodded, understanding the gravity of her situation. “You should get some rest. Go home, check on your friend. We’ll keep the signal running, and if she shows up my men—”

Atomic Bat quickly interjected. “No, don’t arrest her!” Atomic Bat pulled out a small sealed envelope from her utility belt and handed it to the commissioner. “If she shows up, give her this. It’s a note, with a location where she can find me. It’s a risk, but if it means saving Blue Tango, it’s one that I’m willing to make.”

Jim took the envelope and stared at it for a moment. “You have my word. We’ll do everything that we can to support you.”

As Atomic Bat prepared to leave, she paused, looking back at the glowing Atomic Bat symbol shining in the night sky. “Thank you Jim…”

With a swift and silent grace, Atomic Bat lept off of the roof and vanished into the shadows of the night, leaving Commissioner Jordan alone.


DOOMSAYER


A different darkness took claim over the city as the night pressed on.  Storm clouds slowly moved in and loomed overhead, covering the stars and moon and leaving the world to rely solely on the artificial lighting from the street posts and random neon billboards that made up a lot of Grand City.

Back at HQ, the Blue Tango rested soundly on the medical bed as Harlot sat in her normal space, pecking away and staring at a computer screen only a couple inches from her nose.

Blue Tango's condition, the lethargic, sick feeling he's succumbed to recently, has only worsened as time went on.  It's hard to say how long he's been suffering from the symptoms.  Even when they were obvious to the Atomic Bat, even when he was easily outmatched by a common, street-level thug, he denied feeling any serious ailments.

Harlot rose up from her station and walked over to the bedside to check on Tango when Toxicity walked in through the balcony door.  A giant vine could be seen descending back down from the balcony as she entered.

Harlot, hearing the entry of someone but assuming it was the Atomic Bat, was shocked when she turned around and dropped a tray of medical supplies.  She immediately went to strike!

"You!"  Harlot shouted as she ran forward and leaped in the air.

Toxicity waved her hand and a fern in the corner reached out and grabbed Harlot right out of the air!

"Now, now.  I'll only be a moment."

"You dirty rotten veggie-bit–", Harlot squirmed around in the leafy arms of the fern and screamed obscenities until it grew again and wrapped around her mouth.

Toxicity continued toward Blue Tango in the bed and stood over him for a moment.  Harlot managed to bite through the leaf over her mouth and scream out again!

"Leave 'em alone you green slut!"

Toxicity waved her arm and the fern grew bigger, stronger, and tighter making talking a lot more painful for Harlot.

"Back. Away."

At that moment, a spot opened up in the stormy sky to reveal the moon in the background of the Atomic Bat standing in the entrance from the balcony.

"And release Harlot, you fiend!"

*SIGH*  "I thought you'd be a little longer Atomic Bat…  Your pointless crime fighting spree tonight to get my attention, how did it go?"

Atomic Bat took a couple steps into the room closer to the action, but kept her distance in case of an attack that could literally come from anywhere.

"It obviously worked!  You're here, aren't you?"

"Yes, but I'm just dropping by, actually…"  She turned to look back at the Blue Tango, still comatose in the bed.

"Stay away from him!  You're the reason he's in the position he's in, Toxicity!  Your….  VENOM made him sick!"

Toxicity turned to Harlot, waved her hand again and gently released her from the clutches of the house plant.  Harlot then took the side of the hero in the room and took a similar stance.

"It made him unbeatable!"

Atomic Bat angrily stomped a boot into the ground and took another couple of steps forward.

"Look at him!  After he hatched from that cocoon you trapped him in, he hasn't been the same.  Hasn’t acted the same. Sure, he got stronger, but ever since he's become weaker and weaker to the point that it's now killing him!"

"He's not going to die!"  Toxicity insisted.  "Allow me to help him."

"With what?  More of that serum?!"

Toxicity just stared back at them with a blank expression.  She turned to Tango, leaned down, and kissed him on the lips.

"Hey!  STOP!"

Harlot and the Atomic Bat rushed across the room and just as they were about to pull Toxicity from Tango, they saw the color start returning to his face.  They stopped and watched as life began coming back to him.  After the long kiss, Toxicity leaned up away from him and Tango's eyes opened.

"Woah…  Hey!  Welcome back, Tango!  How do you feel?"

He rose up in the bed and yawned.

"Better than ever actually!  What the heck happened?"

"Well, long story short…  That serum was wearing off and making you extremely weak…  Actually, we kind of thought you were a goner…"

"Wait, wut?  For real?"  Tango looked at Toxicity with an inquisitive stare.

"You have some explaining to do before we just assume you're still working for Doomsayer, Toxicity."  Atomic Bat glared at Toxicity and tightened her fists. "I don't know why you're here…  Or why you suddenly want to help…  but–"

"She always wanted to help."

"Now who the hell is that?!"  Harlot yelled out loud.

It was Pussywhipped, entering the same as everyone else this evening, through the balcony door.  She casually and slowly crossed the room and over to the group.

"What's your business here, CAT?"  Atomic Bat asked with her eyes narrowing behind her cowl.  "This wasn't an open invitation."

"Someone left the kitty-door open, so I left myself in….  Bat."

She continued, without hesitation, over to the bed and stood beside them all with Tango.  They all look to Toxicity now, expecting her to back up Pussywhipped's claim.

"It's true," she started, taking a deep breath.  "Doomsayer DID spare me that night.  I was able to shield myself during the massacre, but afterwards he approached me.  He attempted to use mind control, but I'm not capable of being controlled in such a way…"

"So, you've been an evil bitch all by yourself?"  Harlot, outspoken again.

"I used a pheromone to trick him.  The fool…"

"You were able to mind control HIM?!"

"Not necessarily.  Just enough to make him believe he had it over me."

"I don't get it," Tango mumbled.

"We sat and talked after that.  He told me everything.  His plan, all of it, and I followed it."

Toxicity paused and looked around the room at her audience.

"He wanted an army of super soldiers.  Ones that he could control, obviously, by controlling me."

"Okay, then why not make the army!  Since he doesn't really have control over you…  You could use the army to fight HIM!"

Toxicity sighed and looked over to Tango.

"You all just witnessed the price of that.  I can't just create them…  I pollinate a host, they metamorphosis into a stronger, faster, more aggressive version of themselves.  In order to create an army, I would need an army of hosts first."

AB, unable to contain herself any longer, shoved Toxicity and pushed her across the room.  Toxicity didn't block or put up any resistance and allowed it.

"So you were trying to turn Tango into one of those things?!  What the hell is wrong with you?!  Why did you poison him?!"

"I made Tango different!  Or, at least, I tried to!  You rescuing him like that…  I'm surprised that didn't kill him.  You stopped the metamorphosis before it was complete.  I'm guessing THAT is why he got sick…"

"Don't turn this around on me, Toxicity!  You kidnapped him!  You fought against us!  Why?"

"To protect him and give us all a fighting chance!  It's not poison, either, you close-minded simpleton!  Doomsayer is coming and you're not prepared for it!  You're here waiting for his next move while he's just standing-by watching and knowing you're next six!  You have no idea what he knows or what he's capable of!"

"We don't need your serum to overcome evil, Toxicity.  The Atomic Bat and Blue Tango stand for justice and peace, and as heroes, we come built for this."

"That crazy talk may apply when you're defending your championships in the ring, Batsy, but Doomsayer won't be impressed by your hero-jargon." Pusswhipped interjected.

"Again, no one asked the cat."

"She's right," said Tango softly in the background.  They all turn to him in unison.

"Tango…"

"We know enough of what Doomsayer's capable of to know he's the strongest sumbitch in the universe or something right?  I mean, AB, I love the optimism…  I love the heroism…  The Hero's Guild….  Yeah.  But it's gone.  It's JUST US now and we don't have room for error.  If we mess up?  Dude, if we fail?  That's it.  We're freakin' done."

The room fell silent for a few moments before Tango spoke up again.

"I'll do it," he stated confidently.

"Tango, no!  There's other ways!  There has to be!"

"We're facing our greatest challenge to date, AB.  We don't have time to wait around or search for answers when we have them right in front of us.  Toxicity may have a bad history, she may have bumped the wrong elbows, but if I know this girl, and I do, she's always out for the greater good somehow."

"Like the time she flooded the Great Lakes to stop a pipeline from being built?"  Pussywhipped quipped.

"No one died," Toxicity quickly added.

"If my meta-phor-soo-sus got messed up last time and I still ended up as strong as I did, what if it actually gets completed?  Like, can we do that?"

"While I'm not new in the field, this is kind of uncharted waters for me."

"I want no part of your experiment!  Tango, come to your senses, will ya?"

"Trust me, all my senses are tingling right now, AB.  I'm not gonna end up a mindless super soldier, remember?  Just a better, stronger me."

"It's not you I don't trust, Tango," the Atomic Bat paused and let out a sigh as she turned to Toxicity.  "It's the process.  I want every step, every detail down to the plants you're using."

Toxicity shrugged.

"I don't mind sharing the recipe, but you better stay out of my way this time.  Like I said, we got lucky before when you interrupted the process, next time…"  She looked over to Tango who took a big gulp.  "We may not be so lucky."

Toxicity explained the details to everyone and even so, the Atomic Bat remained dubious about the plan.  Toxicity went on about even though the metamorphosis was interrupted before, Tango was in no need for a new cocoon to complete it.  He would go dormant for a bit, but not nearly as long as starting the entire process from the beginning.

"Better now than ever, right?"  Tango said, reluctantly as he lay back in the medical bed.

Toxicity showed off her skills in alchemy as she gave instruction to the others to restrain Tango, only by his wrists and feet, until the process was completed…  For his and everyone else's safety.  As they made the preparations, they heard a loud crash and an explosion outside and took quick cover behind whatever was around.

"What was that?!"  Atomic Bat shouted out.

"Are we under attack?"  Harlot said, poking her head around her desk.

The city's emergency siren began to blare in the distance.  Atomic Bat waited for another moment, for something else to happen, but there was nothing.  She came out of cover and headed towards the balcony windows for a view outside when there was another blast that shattered them and part of the wall sending the Atomic Bat flying back!  Toxicity and Pussywhipped step in front of her while Harlot rushed to her aid, which she denied.  Quickly rising back to her feet, she brushed the debris from her suit and lined up beside the two femme fatales.

"Toxicity!  Pussywhipped and I will handle this!  Get back there and get this done!  Harlot, help Toxicity in whatever she needs!"

"I'm glad you're finally on board with this,"  Toxicity said, taking a short step back.

"I'm not!"  The Atomic Bat said without looking back, "But if Tango trusts you, I trust his judgment.  Not that I or any of us have much of a choice in the matter."

Toxicity nodded and faded into the background to get to work.  She grabbed a vial which contained the concoction that she just brewed up and handed it to Tango.

"Drink that," she said sternly.

Tango looked at it, swirled it around, and took a sniff.

GAG  "E-gads!  It smells rotten!"

"Come on!  Down the hatch!"

Tango took a deep breath and threw the liquid down his throat.  He made a gross face, but managed to keep it all down like it was some bad tasting medicine.  Toxicity stood over him and held her hands palms out.  They began to glow and several tiny vines protruded from them and wrapped around Tango's head.  He immediately stiffened up and groaned painfully, fighting the restraints.

"Hold him down, Harlot!"  Toxicity struggled to say as she fought against Tango's resistance.

The Atomic Bat and Pussywhipped remained ready as another explosion happened just across the street from where they stood.  From the smoke and flames came none other than the Smoker.

"HAHAHAHA–" *cough COUGH!  COUGH!*  "HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!"

"Smoker?!"

Pussywhipped and the Atomic Bat shared a quick glance at each other.  Harlot, who was using all of her strength to restrain Tango, perked up and nearly lost her grip on him.

"That's–"  *COUGH!  HACK!!*  "--my name!  Don't wear it out!  Heh–"  *WHEEZE*  "-heh!"

"What are you doing here?!  What's the meaning of this?!"

"Are you serious?  THIS is typical ME, isn't it?"

He took a couple steps forward.

"Stay where you are!  Don't move!"

Smoker held his hands up and chuckled through another cough and took the step back.

"Hey, hey…  Before you get all upset, Bats-o, I have a surprise for all of you!"

The Atomic Bat narrowed her eyes.

"What should we do?"  Pussywhipped murmured towards the Atomic Bat.  "Should we attack?  He's stalling for something…"

"No…  Something isn't right.  Smoker isn't courageous or brave by any means…  Him showing up here…  There has to be more to it…"

"Whenever you're ready ladies!"  *cough…*  "I really want to get this out of the way…  There's some BIG!  BIG BIG *HACK!* BIG plans tonight."

Just then, a giant shadowy figure entered through the wreckage, levitating above Smoker.

"SUR–"  *COUGH!*  Surprise!"

DOOMSAYER!


"Well, well, well.  Look what we have here, all of my little ducks lined up in a row."

The sound of his voice carried through the destroyed apartment and caught everyone off guard.  A hopeless feeling flowed through them all as their hearts sunk deep into their stomachs.

"The ultimate DOUBLE-CROSS, baby!!  HAHAHAHA"-- *HACK!*  "--HAHAHAHAHA!"

"Double-cross?  Uh-no?  We NEVER trusted you, Smoker!  We were using YOU just as much as you thought you were using us!"

"Oh, puh-lease!  HAHAHA–"  *COUGH!*  "I had you all hook, line, and stinker!  HAHAHAHA!"

"Didn't your mother ever tell you not to play with your food?"  Doomsayer said, still looming over Smoker.

"There's a real funny story about my mother…  Ya know she was the one to give me my VERY first cigarre–" 

"Enough of this."

Doomsayer interrupted, lowering himself and swatted back at Smoker with lightning speed and god-like power sending the villain soaring and vanishing into the night sky!

"Smokey!!"  Harlot shouted as she lost her grip on Tango!

The restraints began to rip around his wrists and his right hand managed to break free.

"Harlot!  No!  Hold him!  Hold him!"

Harlot, blinded by rage and whatever compassion for Smoker still lingered within her, leaped across the room to attack Doomsayer, only to be met with a similar fate.  He swatted at her, as well, but sent her crashing into the concrete wall across the room.  She fell motionless to the ground and stayed there.

"Harlot!"

Pussywhipped went to jump, too, but Atomic Bat grabbed her wrist to hold her back.

"Don't!  We're…  We're….  Toxicity!"

The green glow in Toxicity's hands grew brighter.  Tango continued to flail around on the bed and scream in agony.

"I'm trying!  I need more time!"

Atomic Bat sighed, realizing that regardless if Toxicity manages to finish or not, their fates could already be sealed.  She looked over to Pussywhipped and smiled.

"Are you ready?"

Pussywhipped slightly glanced over with a cocky smile of her own.

"It's meow or never."

"Oh, shut up."

Together, Pussywhipped and the Atomic Bat charged the fiend!  Pusswhipped rolled to the side and used her leather whip to grab Doomsayer's right hand as Atomic Bat leaped and sprung off the wall.  Doomsayer pulled on the whip and used the momentum to block Atomic Bat's attack with Pussywhipped's own body.  The two meet in mid-air and crash to the floor.  Doomsayer, now grounded, stomped over and stood over the two of them.  Each step he took felt like they were going to bring the building down.  Like he was 100 feet tall and his weight could not be withheld by the floor below.  He reached down and grabbed them both by the backs of their necks.

"You're like a bunch of little cockroaches…"  He said darkly, hoisting them both effortlessly up above his head.  "I could destroy an entire city.  Annihilate the entire Hero's Guild.  Eliminate every villain in one foul swoop…"  He squeezes and people across town could hear their necks crack.  "Yet…  You remain."

Toxicity, knowing that time has officially run out, made a decision in her head that no one else knew was an option.  The glow from her hands slowly crept up her arms and quickly began to cover her entire body.  Her eyes opened, showing an even brighter glow of green and Tango screamed out even louder getting Doomsayer's attention.

"Ah, there's my green little puppet."

Toxicity, struggling to speak, looked over to Doomsayer who still held tightly onto Pusswhipped and Atomic Bat like a couple of ragdolls.

"I'm…"  She grunted.  "Not…  Your puppet!"

The green glow created an aura around her and Tango.  Doomsayer, using telekinesis, pulled the television off the wall and sent it flying her direction.  It blew apart on impact, but the green aura around them protected them.  Doomsayer scoffed and tossed his victims aside and began to make his way towards Toxicity…

"I'm sorry."  Toxicity's tear ducts filled and a stream of emotion began to pour down her face and cheeks.  "I'm sorry, Calypso."

Just then, the aura burst through the ceiling and up into the sky causing a beacon that you could see from the moon!  A bright green explosion followed, blinding Doomsayer and bringing us to our totally awesome cliffhanger ending.

To be continued?Most def.
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