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Reanimated: » Games » Project Angel » Issues » Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus

Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus

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26 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 30th October 2011, 20:36

“You want to plan ahead and take all the fun out of it?” Mark grinned at Dirk. “Ok, ok. We can’t go in the front, not without shooting the place up, as they’ll be tight on security with these riots and checking all incomers against their computers. So, we sneak in the back. Once inside if someone spots us we’ll pretend to be a outside maintenance team. There should be a fake ID in the glove box.”

Dirk opened he box and started rummaging around, pulling out ID’s that said, amongst other things, Health and Safety, Building Inspector, Private Security and a library card. Eventually he found the ID Mark had referred to.

“There isn’t one for me Mark.”

“That’s ok. We can say you are on an apprentice scheme or some such rubbish.”

“Will this ID actually work?”

“Nope! But it will hopefully distract them long enough to knock out.”

“And what do we do once we’re inside?”

“Well, broadcasting is a 24 hour business, so the Brotherhood will have some kind of permanent presence there. We’re looking for that, and any evidence of what they are planning. These riots are obviously just a sideshow, a distraction from what they’re really after.” Nodding, and wondering what the Brotherhood could be after, Dirk looked out on the road. Then back to Mark, and back to the road, and back to Mark again.

“You’re still wearing the sunglasses!”

“Yep, they make everything on the road blurry, but that just means it takes more skill to drive.” Dirk looked horrified, and as if he was about to jump out of the pick-up. “Just kidding Kid, there’s a switch built into the frame. In the meantime…” Mark reached out and gave the dashboard a thump. Three screens popped up on front of Dirk, showing aerial views of New York. “Ok, have a look at those satellite uplinks and find us a route to the station avoiding the riots.”

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27 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 30th October 2011, 20:37


Dirk looked startled at the screens. Just when you thought there couldn't be any more cool things about the man, just like a Swiss Army Knife, another cool thing made itself apparent. It seemed like every new mission, every new adventure, Mark had a new gadget to try out.

The satellite and security feeds--even the screens--were new to Dirk. But he'd learned to roll with the punches with this guy as his mentor. "So is there, like, a gun turret that pops out of the roof I should be aware of?"

Mark looked at him sharply, as if to say either "No, my God, are you insane?" or else "Why would I build a turret coming out of the roof when there's all that space in the back to work with?" But he didn't say anything out loud, so Dirk immediately set himself to becoming familiar with the controls and with the route.

One clear backstreet route clearly marked itself out as "safe" in the teaming city. But Dirk paused, because--

"Dirk? Where am I going, Kid?" Mark demanded, trying himself to make sense of the screens while still keeping his eyes on the road.

--the Right path wasn't always the easiest one. They were holding up a grocery store in a poor neighborhood, for crying out loud. And there were women and children in there, held at gunpoint while the hapless clerks loaded food onto a van. And that man was wearing a mask and looked way too strong not to be a post-human.

"Um, turn left here," Dirk said.

The car swerved wildly, tires screeching. "You think you could have waited any bloody longer to tell me that?"

"But don't get onto the freeway, here. We should take 47th downtown." Dirk was pretty sure Mark would be mad when he found out his directions hadn't avoided the riots, but Dirk was also pretty sure that that anger would subside when he realized that innocent civilians were in danger. The raid on the TV station could wait, because this was priority: you never let killing the bad guys get in the way of rescuing innocents, and Mark knew that. Dirk suspected he'd probably get in trouble, anyway.

Mark snorted as he realized where they were headed. "The ghetto?" Then he paused, changing his mind: "You know what? Good thinking. It's probably pretty quiet in that area, considering."

Dirk decided not to say anything, remembering what Mark had said about him being a terrible liar.

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28 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 30th October 2011, 20:39

Mark swung the pick-up round another corner and gave an inarticulate cry of ‘bloody hell’. Tires and brakes screeched as the pick-up swerved sideways trying to avoid smashing into the front of the approaching mob. Mark turned furiously towards Dirk.

“Can’t you read a f***ing map?”

There was a sound of gunshots from the mob and Dirk reflexively ducked as several impacted on the glass, small cracks appearing at the impact points.

“When we’re done Kid you’re fixing the dents.” He turned to look at the riot, catching sight of the hold up in the middle of the street. It looked as if some of the rioters were preparing to firebomb the place.

Mark kicked open the pick-up door, leap across the road behind an upturned dumpster and opened fire with his large rifle. A green ball of superheated plasma erupted into the ground on front of the rioters, throwing many off their feet by a combination of shock and heat waves. One of the rioters, who had been holding up the shot, was caught on the edge of the blast. The plasma burnt away the hoodie the rioter had been wearing. Below it was a black armoured suit, marked with a hand holding out a globe surrounded by a red triangle. The symbol of The Brotherhood. He raised his weapon and a silent beam of bright light shot out. Mark had barely time to duck out of the path of the laser, retaliating with another shot for the plasma rifle. Most of the rioters were now fleeing but five, including the oversized man, remained.

“Are you joining the fun Dirk, or just going to sit in the car?” Mark called over the confusion. But that wasn’t what grabbed Dirk’s attention. The large man at the back of the group had strode forward with unnatural movements and now his hand, no, his whole arm, was unfolding to reveal a large multi-barrelled weapon. It began spinning furiously and bullets flew towards Mark, the impact throwing him off his feet.

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29 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 5th November 2011, 16:03


As the machine gun fire exploded out of the post-human's arm at Mark, Dirk instinctively threw up an energy field which raced, like a speeding train, to protect his prone mentor. The bullets deflected off, raining a shower of lead onto the rioters that didn't exactly make Dirk happy, except that many of them stopped rioting and grabbed floor long enough for Dirk to grab the shotgun beneath the seat of the truck and sprint over to join Mark.

"You all right?" Dirk asked as he took a knee by his mentor, peeking out behind the not-quite-translucent red wall of energy that protected them to take a few pot-shots at the post-human. As he was reloading, Dirk certainly felt like he was bringing a shotgun to a machine-gun-laser-beam-fight which, okay, he totally was. But right now, the protective wall was doing them a heck of a lot of good.

"Yeah," Mark grunted, sitting up. He was probably lying, but they'd have to sort out broken bones later. "The Brotherhood."

"Figures." Dirk spun around the wall, took a few more useless shots with the toy gun. "They're holding up the convenience store there: innocents inside, we need to get in there." He tossed the gun aside when it was empty, because it wasn't doing him any good, and began curving the wall of red energy around them protectively. "So what's the plan, Boss-man?"

Last edited by Maeglin on 14th December 2011, 04:25; edited 1 time in total

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30 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 6th November 2011, 20:44

His armour had coped with most of the bullets but it hadn’t helped a jolt against smashing into a wall. Thankfully there didn’t seem to be any injuries, at least, none that he couldn’t push through for now.

“A plan eh Kid.” Mark grinning, partially to try and convince Dirk he was ok. “You ready for a challenge? Try and sneak into the store and get those people out while I keep the Brotherhood here off your back. You’ve got a better change of rescuing them and keep them safe with those fields of yours.”

“I can’t let you take on all of them on your own.” Dirk countered. Mark fished a small metal sphere from a pouch.

“Don’t worry kid, I’ve an ace up my sleeve.” He twisted the sphere and threw it towards the group of advancing Brotherhood. It gave a couple of surprisingly springy bonces before detonating in a shower of sparks. The laser fire stopped instantly, the weapons damaged by the EMP burst. The cyborg started stumbling, the cybernetics although shielded still suffering.

“Now Dirk. Go!” Mark stood back up and brought the plasma rifle to bear. The Brotherhood did the same with their pistols.

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31 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 7th November 2011, 03:19


Well, he wasn't about to disobey Mark, even if he was sure the man had a death wish. At least he seemed to have an invincible streak to go with.

At the last moment Dirk flicked his energy field to surround himself. Mark had indeed taught him a great deal in two years, and though his powers were always growing, with careful concentration and the support of a wise mentor, Dirk could always control his power.

Well, almost always, anyway.

Dirk put his head down and sprinted toward the store, bullets deflecting off the field with many a shing!and ptang! He rounded the van to see where the clerks had finished loading the van and were now being lined up along the wall at gunpoint. The hooded figures--likely Brotherhood agents, too--pushed the rest of the civilians against the same wall, until nearly a dozen innocents were lined up before the firing squad. As some reloaded their weapons, others boarded the van to make an escape.

Ha! Not if Dirk Rogers had anything to say about it!

Women were screaming and children were crying as the order was given: "Ready. Aim. Fire!"

Dirk timed it perfectly. The field of red went up just as the triggers were squeezed, and the bullets meant for the civilians ricocheted back into the line of Brotherhood thugs, many of which were hit.

Cries of confused rage went up, until Dirk whistled sharply for their attention. Which, considering he couldn't well drop the wall protecting the innocents, was maybe not the greatest idea. Unless...

Well, he couldn't protect the civilians and himself at the same time, but he could encase the goons in their own impenetrable bubble where, yes, sure enough, a few idiots fired enough shots that their own bullets became their undoing.

With most of the Brotherhood terrorizing the store dispatched, Dirk was about to congratulate himself.

That was before the van started driving away.

Last edited by Maeglin on 7th December 2011, 00:03; edited 1 time in total

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32 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 14th November 2011, 21:26

Bullets whizzed past him as Mark ducked through cover back to the truck. Behind him he could hear the Brotherhood jeering at him. He grinned, knowing what was going to happen. Opening the door, his hand felt around for a large switch near the gear lever. As the Brotherhood reached the back of the truck he flicked it, withdrawing his hand as quickly as possible.

Three things happened at once. The truck flew forward propelled by the jet boosters through a wall. The Brotherhood soldiers were caught in the backdraft and sent flying, landing unconscious and a bit scorched. And Mark relit his cigar on the flames from the jet.

As the smoke cleared, Mark saw the cyborg, still stumbling slightly, bringing his gun arm to bear. Not wanting to repeat the last experience, Mark again ducked behind cover. He tried to bring his rifle up, but was met with gunfire each time. Mark cursed, one day he’d repair that force field belt to help in situations like this. But that was no help now. And another EMP grenade was unlikely to have any further effects. Over the breaks in gunfire Mark heard his opponent near. ’Who wants to live forever’ Mark thought.

He leapt over the rubble right at his opponent, who was now too close to bring his gun arm up in time. Mark brought the plasma rifle down in the cyborgs face, onto the metal plate that covered the right hand side. Before he was able to land a second blow the cyborg grabbed him and flung him across the road. The plasma rifle went skimming even further and Mark drew the tazer.

“That puny weapon won’t hurt me” growled the cyborg in metallic tones.

“Bet your life?” asked Mark. “Your faceplate’s exposed.” Before the cyborg could react Mark squeezed the trigger firing the tazer into the unshielded cybernetic brain. Pulling himself up, Mark caught sight of a van screaming off as the cyborg twitched madly behind him.

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33 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 15th November 2011, 04:07


No! The scum! They were getting away!

Dirk assessed the situation. The van was half-loaded with food, but the Brotherhood agents seemed to decide that discretion was the better part of valor and were jumping on the van or otherwise escaping down alleyways and into shadows.

The civilians were fleeing in the commotion.

Mark looked like he could handle himself.

Shrugging, Dirk ran after the van, jumping on just as it picked up speed. What better way to get inside?

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34 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 28th November 2011, 21:04

Mark watched as the van drove off, considering the next move. And then saw the small blur as Dirk leapt after it.

“Of all the stupid, foolhardy...” Mark muttered, jogging through the wall that the pick-up had smashed through just moments before. Coughing as he pushed through the dust cloud, he heaved himself into the cab and started the engine.

It coughed but wouldn’t start. Swearing, Mark leap back out of the cab, thumped the side of the engine chassis as hard as he could, leaving a massive dent. Back in the cab, he tried the engine again, this time it went. He slammed the pick-up into reverse, much faster that was sensible. More of the building collapsed as Mark reached the street.

They were never going to reach the TV station at this rate. Unless, unless that was where the truck was heading.

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35 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 5th December 2011, 02:00


Dirk really ought to have thought this through a little more clearly, but, really, what else could be expected from him, with Mark to learn from? In fact, the older man must really be rubbing off on him, Dirk was usually better about going in half-cocked like that.

But, well, here he was.

And here they were. Four burly Brotherhood thugs, who were for the moment as surprised as he was to find each other there among the cans of food and supplies.

But Dirk steeled his resolve. "All right, gentleman," he warned, "this is a citizen's arrest for being in possession of stolen goods. Turn this thing around and no one gets hurt."

They might have laughed at him immediately--had even opened their mouths to do so--if he had not been concentrating very carefully as he talked. This was playing with nitroglycerin level of dangerous here. Dirk couldn't believe he was doing this. But maybe a bluff would work and no one would actually get hurt--like, say, the entire city block.

His hands glowed red, his fists encased, armor-like, in the slightly translucent neon energy of his power. Then it crept up, unfolded, shaped, flickered, up his arms, until he felt like he had as a kid wearing his favorite Hulk fists. It didn't stop there, but continued creeping up, spreading over his chest. If he concentrated, it would hold. If he was smart about this, the armor made him stronger, faster, a more worthy opponent for four large adults. If he was careful, it wouldn't just explode.

"So, gentleman, what's it going to be?"

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36 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 6th December 2011, 22:20

Two things had become apparent. One, the trunk was currently not heading towards the TV station. And two, Dirk was now inside the truck. Gunning the engines Mark strained against the damaged steering to catch up with the truck. Suddenly laser fire erupted through the side of the van. Mark swore and tried to swerve away from the line of fire. Not that the shots had been aimed at him, they had just come through the bodywork of the truck.

That wasn’t good. Not only was Dirk in the truck, he was in trouble. Accelerating alongside the truck, Mark switched on the cruise-control and started to climb out the sunroof. The driver noticed and fired a few pot-shots. ‘This is a really bad idea’ thought Mark as he pulled himself onto the roof, trying not to think about the sharp bend approaching rapidly.

With a cry of ‘Geronimo’ Mark leapt from the Pick-up and smashed through the laser damaged side of the truck. As luck would have it he flattened one of the Brotherhood fanatics as he did so. He looked up and glanced at Dirk. Mark was impressed. Not only had he created a complex armour from his powers, he seemed to be holding it together well in a fight.

Another Brotherhood disciple attempted to jump Mark. He ducked and used the fanatics own momentum to send him out the truck from the same opening Mark had created.

“And THIS Kid, is the reason I don’t plan ahead!” Mark exclaimed.

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37 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 7th December 2011, 04:46


((Dammit! You know when you write a really good post and then it gets deleted? Yup, totally just happened to me. Rookie move! Grrr. Let's try this again.))

The hilarity of the situation--good grief, the man was like the anti-A-Team!--was balanced by the gravity of it.

Dirk had dispatched one of the thugs when Mark had swooped in, very much like a costumed super, whatever he liked to say, and took down the other three before Dirk could blink.

Awesome, Dirk thought. Crisis averted. Now all you have to do is turn it off. But his tightly clenched fists belied how comfortable he really was not with the situation. The red energy field of his power enveloped all of him now, but it was highly unstable. And really hard to turn off.

"Kid, what're you--" Mark began, then looked at him strangely, a knowing, alarmed look on his face that said he was trying not to look alarmed.

That only made it worse. Don't screw up in front of Mark, don't screw up in front of Mark... "Mark, I..." he ground out, gasping. Like he expected Mark to fix it.

"Take it easy, Kid, focus, you gotta bring it down." The drill-sergeant voice. The one you obeyed easy as breathing. He just couldn't. The power was too strong. Like a balloon you couldn't let the air out of because it was too full already and it was too high up to reach.

"I'm...trying..." Sweat sprung up along his brow and chest from effort. It was just a simple flick of a switch, why couldn't he do it? If the embarrassment wouldn't kill him, the energy field might--him and Mark and the truck and the whole darn city and--

"Dirk, you've got to--ahh!" Mark cried, as the thug who had been riding shotgun next to the driver leapt into the back of the truck with them, and the two grappled as Dirk continued to struggle. The field flickered, alarmingly, but held, and he just stood there, still, straining, flickering, useless. Worse than useless. A ticking time bomb.

And then, suddenly, inexplicably, in a painful rush, like all the air was sucked out of the world around him, making his ears pop and knocking the wind from him, his power was gone, imploded instead of exploded. Dirk dropped to a knee, blinking tears back. Dirk didn't trust himself to look up, was still too dizzy, so he spent a great deal of time studying the ground. Where there was a crowbar.

Mark was still wrestling with the thug, throwing punches, rolling around the back of the truck like it was Chuck Norris vs. Superman or something. Dirk stood up, crowbar in hand. Mentor and mentee locked eyes in wordless communication. Mark shifted himself to present the back of the thug to Dirk, and Dirk swung like he was knocking a Grand Slam out of the ballpark.

The thug dropped like a load of bricks, unconscious.

There was a loaded silence for a few long seconds.

Breathing heavily, Mark stepped toward him, but Dirk backpedaled, almost tripping over a crate of supplies, his hands raised.

"I'm sorry, Mark, I didn't mean to! Well, I mean, okay, I did: I didn't want them getting away, and I thought they might lead us to their hideout and I really didn't mean for my power to get out of control like that, it was way out of line, I get that, and I'm sorry, and it's not that I forgot your training it's just really hard, and I swear it won't happen again! Please don't be mad!"

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38 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 7th December 2011, 22:55

“Calm down Dirk.” Mark spread his arms out wide. “I’m not mad. Just…” Mark didn’t get a chance to finish before he was thrown off his feet as the truck swerved wildly.

“Damn, knew I forgot something. Hang on a second Kid. This is why you don’t monolog!” Swinging into the passenger seat as the truck swerved again, Mark brought up his gun in the face of the driver.

“Now, you want to cut out the stunts and just pull over nice and calmly.” With a plasma rifle barrel millimetres from his nose, the driver obeyed, “Thank you!” and was promptly knocked out by a left hook. Mark returned to the back of the truck, and took a deep breath.

“Dirk, I’m not mad at what you did. You reacted to a situation, and if these idiots had more than one brain cell,” he gave a Brotherhood solider a light kick for emphasis, “it would have turned out well. And you might have lost control, but you tried not to. And you didn’t explode, which is a plus. If you hadn’t tried, then I would have been mad.” ’And probably a smoking crater’ he thought. Kicking over a crate, Mark sat down and motioned for Dirk to do the same.

“Changing the plan on the fly is nothing to worry about. Hell, it happens so often it’s why I barely bother to plan. But then, I suppose I’ve been at this for a while now. In time you’ll learn through experience how to react when things go wrong. As for your powers, actually I’m impressed with what you did. You held onto it very well in the circumstances. Next time though, maybe try creating the front only? Or large shields on your arms?” There was a pause.

“Right, that’s enough touchy-feely stuff. We’ve still got an evil cult to overthrow!”

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39 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 8th December 2011, 03:44


Dirk managed a smile. Mark surely had a way of turning a phrase and, in spite of himself, Dirk felt better about his massive screw-up. He felt a little shaky, still, from the close call, but otherwise he appeared not to be injured by the overexertion of his powers.

"You're right, Mark, I'm sorry."

He looked around at the van.

"Well, we can take their uniforms as a disguise to get in. And surely we can get into the TV station with the van. It will at least buy us enough time to infiltrate to the main broadcast studio and..."

Mark was staring at him, grinning faintly.


"You're planning, Kid."

"Oh." Dirk blushed. "Well, I'm not saying we can't change it if we need to." He dropped to a knee and began tugging the heavy thug out of his uniform. "It's like straight out of Indiana Jones."

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40 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 9th December 2011, 20:56

“As long as you don’t plan past that ‘and’ we’ll be fine. We’ve no idea what’s happening at the station, so we can’t plan it anyway.” He looked thoughtful for a minute. “You know I’ve don’t think I’ve seen an Indiana Jones film since they left the cinema.”

It didn’t take them long to change into the outfits the thug’s had been wearing. Mark looked around for some rope but couldn’t find any, but there was some handy cable that was just as good for tying them up.

“Ok Kid, on to the TV station.” The words were barely out of Mark’s mouth when they heard the distant wail of sirens.

“Not a good time to be in charge of a van with stolen property! Let’s get out of here!” Mark gunned the engine and the truck screamed off. Taking a circuitous route to avoid the cops, the van eventually arrived at the TV station.

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41 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 10th December 2011, 05:22


Dirk felt a

And it wasn't just because he was wearing someone else's clothes. He'd begun to fill out properly, anyway, so the uniform fit almost perfectly.

He was more than a little apprehensive about activating his powers again. But he was also kind of concerned that he simply couldn't.

"Mark, we may have a problem," Dirk whispered as they pulled up to a checkpoint, flashed badges, and drove in through a garage door into the TV station.

"Like this whole thing isn't a problem?"

"Hey!" Mark stuck his head out the window and called to a few guards who were directing them in. "Get this van unloaded," he barked.

The guards headed for the back of the van. Mark nodded at Dirk and, as one, they disembarked the truck and walked around behind the guards. Seconds after they had opened the doors and discovered, in confusion, their comrades unconscious and bound in the back of the van amongst the crates, they too were knocked unconscious and shoved in the van.

Mark nodded, satisfied. "Nice work, Kid."

"Mark," Dirk tried again, "I think we may have a..."

"Okay, we don't have much time," Mark said, looking around him.

Dirk sighed. "Fine. Where's the studio?"

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42 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 11th December 2011, 21:15

“No Kid, we want to avoid the studio.” Dirk look surprised at Mark, who just grinned back. “We’re going to have a poke around inside first. There’ll have to be a constant Brotherhood presence in the station. We’re going to find that first.”

Mark swiped one of the cards from the newly unconscious worker through the door lock. It gave a muted beep and slid open.

“Come on, Dirk, and try not to look at any cameras.” They wander through the studio for a few minutes. Dirk got a few odd looks, but nothing noticeable.

“Bingo.” Mark stopped outside a door marked ‘Spare equipment’.

“Uh, Mark, that’s just a storeroom.” Whispered Dirk.

“They why would it have a security lock?” asked Mark, pointing at the key-card and keypad lock. He began unscrewing the cover and fiddling with the insides, making progress until…

“Hey, what are you doing?” came a yell from a surprised guard. Mark looked up.

“The lock broke and needed repair. Shouldn’t be too long now.” The gurad looked at Mark then Dirk, and moved to draw his gun.

“Shit! Dirk, deal with him while I get the door.” Mark turned back to the lock, then suddenly found himself being pushed off his feet by Dirk, then pulled round the corner as bullets whizzed passed. “That’s not taking care of him.”

“Sorry Mark,” Dirk replied downcast, “but, but I can’t use my powers.”

“What!? Why?” was the spluttered reply.

“Since I lost control in the truck. I haven’t been able to tap into them.”

“Why didn’t you tell me?”

“I tried to, I didn’t get a chance.”

“Dirk! If it’s something THAT important, you tell me, even if you need beat me over the head to do it.”

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43 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 12th December 2011, 02:03


"Yes, sir, I'm sorry, sir," Dirk replied, grinding his teeth and looking at his shoes, kicking himself because he knew he hadn't really tried to get Mark's attention, because he had been too busy being embarrassed, and now they were in the middle of a life-or-death situation and if anything happened it would be his fault...

Dirk chanced another glance around the corner, almost getting his nose shot off for his trouble.

"What the hell are you doing?" Mark demanded.

Gee, Mark sure was not going to like this next stunt--

Dirk turned back to Mark, forcing all the seriousness, determination, and solemnity to his eyes and voice, and "Get to that door. I'll meet you back here."

Mark had his arm in an iron grip faster than a speeding bullet.

"Don't you dare," he warned. "You don't have your powers."

"But," Dirk insisted, "I still have your training."

In the brief moment that Mark was confused as to how to respond to that, Dirk jerked his arm free and dove across the hallway, rolling and scrabbling up to his feet to take off like a rocket down the other corridor.

"Right with ya, boss!" Dirk shouted, half to bluff to the dim-witted guard that they were both headed down the same hallway (which worked like a charm), and half as an assurance to Mark--who hopefully got the Star Wars reference--though, then again, probably not--that he'd take care of himself and be back once he had ditched this chucklehead.

Because, really, if Mark didn't make him run--not jog, but run--ten miles a day as training for situations just like this, he sure as H-E-double-hockey-sticks was not going to train any more!

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44 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 14th December 2011, 21:06

That. Damn! KID!

“Dirk, GET BACK HERE!” but Dirk had already disappeared from sight. Now he was off Mark would have to follow through with his plan. It would be pointless trying to chase him, but once they were done here…

Mark strode back along the corridor, not even flinching as the alarms began to sound. He squared off against the door.

“Screw subtly.” He raised his leg and kicked with all his force. The reinforced door stood up to the kick. However, the frame and the wall did not, so door, lock and frame fell forward into the room. The occupants didn’t even have time to look up before Mark tossed in a stun grenade. And some hadn’t even looked up as they fell unconscious.

He entered the room, stepping over the bodies. On the opposite wall hung a large Brotherhood banner. Yep, there was the proof they needed. Mark tutted, he hadn’t expected it to be this easy. The next second he found himself reeling as something invisible punched him in the stomach. Despite the glasses, he was unable to see his attacker.

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45 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 15th December 2011, 03:13


Dirk ran.

He lost the guard in a matter of minutes.

But now he was kind of...lost.

Thoughts about how his life would proceed after this mission were looking bleaker and bleaker. If Mark didn't kill him outright, Dirk knew he'd at least be washing and waxing the vehicles for the rest of his days. Heck, Mark would probably build more vehicles just for him to wash and wax. Not to mention he'd be grounded until he was 18. And Mark would certainly never let him go on one of these missions ever again.

This was a bad idea. He knew this, that was the stupid part! You never split up! Not in the comic books, not in real life! Stupid.

Dirk heard voices, up ahead. Men's voices, loud, booming, like politicians.

"Our hold is slipping! It only lasts as long as the riots continue!"

"Agreed! And once the citizens tire and go to their homes, what power do we have?"

"We still hold this station. They will tire, go home, and watch their televisions. We will hold them yet!"

"Now, see here--"

"Brothers!" a voice rose above the rest, not only because it was somehow louder, but it was also female. The voice was sultry, alluring, powerful, pleasant to listen to. Dirk crept closer. This hallway was dark, lit only by the light that came from beneath a door, where the voices also came from.

"Our mission is nearly complete. What kind of Brotherhood would we be if we lost all sense of unity now?"

A chant went up, then: "The Brotherhood!" It made Dirk's skin crawl.

This had to be the proof Mark was talking about! Dirk whirled around excitedly, only to run smack into a hooded and cloaked man, hiding heavy body armor, some sort of weird weapon Dirk had never seen before, and a mean right hook.


Dirk was on the ground before he knew what had hit him. Dazed, he staggered back to his feet, his ears ringing, and took a few swipes at the man. But this was no common thug, and he dodged all of Dirk's blows but one, and though solid, it did little more than knock him back a few feet. Dirk turned to bolt, but that was before another of these guards stepped up to block his escape.

If only he could get his force field to work! It wouldn't even matter if it blew up in here. That might even be a good thing. But try as he might, he got not even a spark, and as the men advanced on him, as a last-ditch attempt at escape he dodged them, actually successfully dove between the legs of one, rolled, leapt to his feet, and was off like a shot.

There was, then, however, an actual shot--a kind of laser beam shot, from one of their weird weapons, probably--and a sharp pain in the back of his leg, and Dirk went down. Hard.

The guards were on him instantly, pinioning his arms behind him and hauling him to his feet, and as they dragged him forcibly through the doors where he had heard the condemning conversation going on, Dirk began to realize that there were in fact worse fates than being grounded by Mark...

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46 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 15th December 2011, 21:42

Mark took another invisible blow to the chest and almost buckled. He didn’t even bother trying to swing back. Experience told him that would just be a waste of energy. Reaching into his pockets Mark tried to pull out another EMP grenade, only to find he was already out.

In the time wasted searching for a non-existent grenade, his assailant got another two blows in. Time to even the odds. Mark swung out his plasma rifle and vented the weapon. The heated gas quickly spread throughout the room. It was uncomfortable warm, almost painful, but not so Mark would notice. And if his opponent was functioning on sight or infra-red, then now Mark was invisible.

While his assailant was shimmering in the gas cloud. Now with a target, Mark opened fire with his tazer, discarding the now powerless plasma rifle. The electricity sparked across his opponent, partially shorting out the invisibility. Both Mark and the Brotherhood fanatic met in close quarters, swinging punches and kicks. Grabbing one of the raised nodules on the armour, probably part of the stealth system, Mark was able to pull his opponent off balance, and straight through a table. After that, there was very little fight left in him, and Mark soon knocked him fully unconscious.

Now, where had Dirk gone?

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47 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 16th December 2011, 17:02


Now he was nearer, and once his eyes had gotten used to the sudden brightness, Dirk recognized a small symbol embroidered on everyone's gear: a hand holding a globe, surrounded by a red triangle. He engraved that to memory and looked around.

The woman caught his eye first. She was very beautiful, tall, and, well, actually not as evil as he would have guessed her to look. She was young, dressed in a pale yellow cardigan: a sharp contrast to the old men that sat around the long table with her.

Actually, Dirk wasn’t quite as scared as he felt he should be, which was probably a bad sign. Well, no matter. They wouldn’t get anything from him, either way.

The guards were apologizing for interrupting as they dragged him along, pulling his arms back until Dirk thought they were going to pop off. One of them now twisted his arm behind him and forced Dirk to his knees: “we found this one lurking outside, and there’s been some sort of disturbance near the back entrance.”

Mark! Dirk thought with some alarm, but luckily kept his eyes down and unreadable. He hadn’t forgotten Mark’s admonition about what a bad liar he was. And if they hadn't caught Mark yet, he still had a chance to escape, and Dirk wasn't going to mess that up.

“Just kill him,” barked one of the Brotherhood Leaders impatiently. “Why did you feel the need to bring him in here?”

The guards readied their weapons, as if they were going to do the deed right then and there. The other two old men at the table, to their credit--though whether they were more concerned about Dirk’s murder or about getting the blood stains out of the expensive-looking carpet Dirk couldn’t tell--seemed shocked at this proposition, though neither said anything.

The woman frowned deeply. “No,” she said, staring intently at him. “Belay that order, gentlemen.” She had a faintly English accent, though it wasn’t strong: just enough to be…attractive? She stood up and walked over to him. She was wearing a knee-length green skirt and sandals. That, for some reason, bothered Dirk, and more than just that she dressed like his mother. You weren’t supposed to see the villain’s toes! Her smile was warm and seemed genuine as she crouched down until she was eye-level with him. “Now, what’s a nice-looking young man like you doing breaking and entering?”

Dirk set his jaw, lifting his chin with a defiance that was meant to be overt.

One of the Brotherhood leaders chuckled and muttered something about American Idol auditions being held one studio down. She whipped her head around, dark curls bouncing, to fix the man with a withering stare. Again, Dirk was getting those soccer-mom vibes from her more than evil-villainess-vibes: like she had said Don’t make me stop this car, or perhaps Am I going to have to count to three? rather than Off with his head! or something.

She turned back to him with a sweet smile, and waited patiently for a few seconds for him to talk, which was of course unforthcoming, her eyes open and expectant. Then she pressed her lips together, more disappointed than angry. “You know it’s not very polite not to answer when asked a question. Didn’t your mother teach you manners before you ran away from home and became a fugitive, Dirk Rogers?”

Dirk couldn’t help his eyes widening. How she could possibly know about that wasn’t half as startling as the way in which she framed the question, as a very insidious little suspicion--though he quelled it immediately--cropped up in the back of his mind: that maybe they hadn’t infiltrated a villain hideout but had actually broken the law, and this was all an enormously unfortunate misunderstanding that would result rather in his being arrested, fitted with an inhibitor chip and shipped back to his parents than being murdered in cold blood by a secret cult.

And Dirk knew which one was the more ignoble of those options.

Sensing she had struck a nerve, she actually stepped back and continued on in a different vein. “What harm could a little talking do?” she insisted, sweetly. She didn’t wait as long for his not-reply this time, however, before sighing and standing up. “Must we continue like this?” she asked sadly.

Here it comes, Dirk thought. The torture.

Then, she surprised him. “At least we can do without the guards. Charles, Joseph, you can wait outside.”

The guards looked about as shocked as Dirk.

Now,” she added, in the I’m-going-to-count-to-three voice. The guards scurried out.

“That’s better.” Now she folded her arms and began to pace around Dirk where he still crouched on the floor, close enough to him that her skirt brushed against his shoulder. He could easily reach out--and, well, maybe not kill her--but try something desperate--but she seemed unafraid of him. “You’re not afraid of us,” she assessed, after having completed her tour. “Very commendable. Then why are you afraid to speak?”

She was baiting him, of course, calling his courage into question. Still, it wouldn’t hurt to give her the time of day. What would Wolverine do in this situation? Mouth off? Certainly, but Dirk didn't exactly have regenerative healing abilities, so maybe that wasn't such a grand plan.

“I have nothing to say to you,” Dirk spat as coldly as he could.

She seemed to think that was cute. “Really? And why is that? Who has made you take such a hard line against me?”

Now the insinuation was stronger: that Mark had been lying to him, misleading him all along. Dirk squashed the seed of doubt with a vengeance and a sudden outburst:

“You’re responsible for all the riots! Hundreds of people have been hurt, dispossessed, or killed because of you and your insane machinations!”

She frowned, looking hurt. “We did not cause the riots, my dear boy. They would have happened anyway had we not existed. And our machinations, as you say, are hardly insane. We are working so that nothing like these riots need happen ever again.”

Dirk shook his head. “Nice try. You can lie to me all you want, it won’t matter. I’m not one of your dedicated viewers, so your TV-broadcast-speeches won’t work on me! I-I don’t know what exactly it is you aim to do, but I do know that I am opposed to you and everything you stand for. So go on, kill me!” This last comment was to the Brotherhood leader who had first suggested he be terminated. Then Dirk turned darkened eyes back to the woman. “You’ll get nothing from me.”

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48 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 16th December 2011, 21:44

There was still no sign of Dirk, and the alarms had turned off. That was a bad sign. At best the poor kid had been captured. At worst, NO, he wouldn’t think that.

So Mark would need to find him. He scooped up a radio from one of the unconscious Brotherhood, then glanced out into the corridor. All clear. While part of him wanted to tear down the building to find Dirk, the best and fastest way would be to find the security centre, and use the cameras.

Which lead to the next problem, where the Hell was the security centre? He turned the corner and almost bumped into another security guard, who looked surprised.

“Excuse me, I need to fix a problem with the CCTV’s. Could you point me towards the security centre?” Mark asked. The guard looked flummoxed, obviously not sure if Mark was genuine or not.

“Umm, its down that corridor and turn right, second door on the left. Could I see your ID please?” Mark punched him square in the face.

“Thank you!” he muttered to the unconscious guard and strode off.

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49 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 18th December 2011, 00:33


The woman was glaring at the man who ordered Dirk’s death. Dirk highly doubted she was indignant on his behalf, but he did consider the thought…

When she barked, “Get out of here,” to the Brotherhood leader, and he actually obeyed, scurrying out with his tail between his legs, Dirk again couldn’t hide his shock.

“There, you see? No one in this room wants to kill you. Why would I want that? I have no reason. Breaking into this station is hardly grounds for capital punishment!” She laughed a silvery laugh, and went on: “You say you would oppose us in every way. Would you oppose the goal of a world at peace?”

“What?” Dirk cried, startled. “No!” Then his face darkened again. This was getting confusing. “You don’t…how could you possibly want that?”

“Why would we not? Isn’t that the concept of brotherhood? That we all exist in peace together?”

Dirk’s mouth flapped. She surely couldn't be serious. Then, an idea that would save him: “But at what cost?” he demanded.

Now she really laughed. “Your imagination must be far more vivid than mine, I fear. What do you mean, ‘at what cost’? Do you believe I possess a diabolical ray beam to turn the inhabitants of the world into automatons or something?”

Dirk admitted it did sound a little foolish.

But no! Golly, he wasn’t beginning to believe her, was he?

There was a heavy silence. Dirk was becoming increasingly confused. They didn’t want to kill him or torture him--they wanted him to join them! But this wasn’t a clear-cut join me, and we will destroy the Emperor and rule the galaxy as father and son! He needed to know more.

“Who are you?”

The woman smiled widely. “A friend.”

Dirk scoffed. "Easy to say."

“You don’t believe me?” She folded her hands and looked down, as if collecting her thoughts, before speaking again. “I have a certain amount of power, Dirk. And I want to use it to help people. I know you can sympathize with that.”

Dirk clammed up again. How could she know he was a super?

“No need to play coy with me. Here,” she offered him a hand. “That floor must be awfully uncomfortable. I think we could better continue this conversation at the table.”

Dirk eyed her suspiciously, but took her hand. Her fingers were warm, tingly, but not unpleasant, and it actually took him a moment to realize that something had changed. The pain in his leg, from the laser blast, had gone, and when he stood, he did so under his own power.

She had healed him?!

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50 Re: Bonus Issue: Daedalus and Icarus on 20th December 2011, 00:35

Mark kicked open the door to the security centre, guns drawn. Only for his dramatic entrance to be ruined as the centre was empty. He paused for a few minutes but not even an invisible enemy made his presence felt

He set the guns down and began switching through the cameras looking for Dirk. After a few agonising moments he found him, talking to an attractive woman. Well, appearances weren’t everything, as Mark knew well, so he better get the Kid out of there before he did something silly.

Striding back into the corridor, Mark stopped short, as he was suddenly surrounded by about a dozen armed Brotherhood.


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