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|The Mysterious Somebody Makes A Very Bad Day|
|1 2 INTRODUCTION TO EVIL|
“One… Two… Three!”
“One… Two… Three!”
There is a distinctive sound that is made when a triceratops rams its head into a wall. That sound had resonated through the halls of PPC HQ fourteen-
fifteen times in the course of the last few minutes. At an unspecified point in the hallways, not that any point could be specified the same way twice, one could find the source of this sound, one Agent Marsha. With a snort, the gargantuan dinosaur pulled away from the wall she had been charging at repeatedly, sat back on her haunches, and tried in vain to rub the front of her head. Next to her, a comparatively much smaller being stomped its foot in frustration.
“Come on!” it said, waving its arms frantically in the air. “If you don’t get to busting down this wall pronto, we aren’t going to have enough empty space to build the PPC Arcade!”
“Thanks for telling me things I already know, Nara,” Marsha snapped, sitting back on her haunches and shaking Generic Surface dust off of herself.
“Less sarcasm, more wall-smashing!” commanded the now-identified Nara, growing a pair of mandibles just so she could click them in irritation. Being a shapeshifter has its perks.
Snarling as well as anyone could manage with a beak, Marsha pulled herself back as far as she could in the surprisingly roomy hallway and focused her anger at the spot in the wall that had already been showing large quantities of cracks. Narrowing her eyes, she rushed at it again, her footfalls rumbling in the corridor louder than they ever had before.
With a rumble far above, a section of the wall began to collapse in on itself. Nara smiled and crossed her arms in satisfaction, despite having done almost none of the work, and Marsha pulled back just in time to prevent being hit by a perfectly square chunk of material. As the dust settled, however, the two DMS Agents could hear a noise from deep inside where the wall once was. It was low, menacing, and just a little ethereal, but when they focused on it just enough, they knew what it was.
It was a villainous laugh.
The Generic Dust swirled and clustered, as though it was being blown about by a very small cyclone, condensing into shapes that lasted for only a few seconds before blowing apart. All the while, the laugh continued, albeit distorted by the sounds of the swirling dust and the noise of a few more pieces of Generic Surface falling down from the ceiling. It was only when the dust settled back to the ground that Nara and Marsha saw the source of the laugh. It was a man, or at least shaped like a man, glowing blue ad wearing what appeared to have once been a white robe. Marsha recognized him immediately.
“The Mysterious Somebody!” she exclaimed with surprise.
“The who?” asked Nara.
“He used to be in charge of the PPC. Under his reign secret police filled the halls, the Flowers were like his slaves, and everyone had to refer to him by his incredibly silly title because he wouldn’t tell anyone his real name. It was a dark, dark time.”
“Mysterious Somebody is a menacing and foreboding title!” boomed the blue-tinged man, lifting his arms in the air and rising two feet off the ground.
“Wait, if he’s dead, what was he doing in our wall?” inquired Nara, still confused.
“FOOLS!” the Mysterious Somebody declared, swooping toward the Agents. “I am not dead! Not any more! But though I am a ghost, I can still act out my revenge!”
“Oh, for the whole ‘deposing and killing you’ thing?” asked Marsha.
“YES! The day I died was the worst day of my life! And now that my ghost is free from that accursed wall, I am free to make everyone in the PPC have the worst day of their lives!”
“I’ll never let you kill everyone!” Marsha declared, readying herself to attack the being hovering before her.
“Oh, no, not that,” the Mysterious Somebody replied dismissively. “I considered doing killing you all, true, but I think it will be a much worse day for everybody involved if you are alive at the end to reflect on what a terrible day it was.”
“I’d be lying if I said that was doing anything to convince me not to charge at you,” remarked Marsha, scraping her rearmost foot back in an intimidation technique she had learned from a long-forgotten movie.
“Just you try!” the Mysterious Somebody boomed. “Do you think that I will stop my righteous quest to ruin everyone’s day just because I am threatened by a reptile? My reputation as a sinister mastermind would be squashed!”
It is worth noting that he only had reached the word “righteous” before Marsha began barreling down the hallway at high speed, horns ready and several tons of prehistoric beast behind them. However, there is a reason that people rarely run headlong at ghosts, brandishing weapons of either the stabbing or thrusting varieties. Ghosts are almost gaseous in nature, and can be passed through with great ease by anyone moving at faster than a crawl. Marsha, however, had never encountered a ghost before, and so was enormously surprised when her horns, her head, and then her entire body went flying through the torso of the Mysterious Somebody, who continued to speak unhindered.
By the time he reached the word “mastermind”, Marsha’s head had smashed through what would have been the far wall of the PPC Arcade. The triceratops, quickly realizing her predicament, tried to free herself, but to no avail. Her bony head-frill had caused her to be stuck fast in the room beyond, and since it was one of Headquarters’s many abandoned Response Centers, no one on the other side was there to help her. The Mysterious Somebody had never even paused in his declaration.
“Well, that gets rid of one witness.” the ghost announced triumphantly. “I’m probably going to need to kill the other one, though, to keep the dramatic tension up. Shame.”
“Ha! Good luck!” declared Nara with a smirk. “I’m indestructible! You can’t kill someone who’s indestructible! It’s like… a rule or something!”
“I am the Mysterious Somebody,” her opponent boomed. “I make the rules.”
Thrusting his arm forward, he launched a bolt of Force energy at Nara, who reacted instinctively by shifting into a smaller form to dodge the blow. A second blast prompted a second transformation, and after a third, Nara had shifted to the form of a small rodent, and in that size was small enough and fast enough to dodge several other Force blasts. If she had possessed the time do so, she would have gloated, but since time was short, she scampered underneath the Mysterious Somebody and prepared to reassume her full size and strength. However, before she could, the ghost’s eyes glowed brightly, and she was sent soaring across the hallway, crashing into a wall with an almost imperceptible thump.
Groaning, the rodent form stood up, preparing to shift to a fast-moving form and fetch reinforcements, but she found that she couldn’t shift to her preferred speed form. In fact, she couldn’t shift out of her rodent form at all.
“Man,” she said, her voice high-pitched and almost unintelligible due to her small size. “This sucks.”
The Mysterious Somebody floated over to her, grinning an abnormally childish grin. “Say again?”
“YEEEEEES!” the ghost shouted. “To you, I bestow the first of many terrible days! And I will not rest until the Protectors of the Plot Continuum has the collective worst day in the history of bad days!” The vengeful ghost rose into the air, laughing to himself as he phased through the ceiling.
Directly above, the Bog Thorn, the Big Thorn’s younger brother, was shuffling down the hallway to see what all the crashing and smashing had been about a few minutes ago. When the laughing ghost appeared directly ahead of him, he stopped with a start, dropping his clipboard and a few other administrative devices on the floor.
How many times have I told people not to do that? he snapped. I am a Flower, and I will not have people passing through walls and floors in front of me! At least you didn’t come down from the ceiling, but mind you, that's hardly a compliment.
“Really?” asked the ghost. “Would it have made your day worse if I had?”
Undoubtedly, the Bog Thorn replied.
Wordlessly, the ghost continued to float higher and higher, passing through the ceiling within seconds and promptly reversed direction, floating back down to the Bog Thorn’s level and phasing through the ceiling from the opposite direction.
NOOOO! bellowed the Bog Thorn. I just told you not to do that!
“BU-WA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HAAA!” the Mysterious Somebody laughed, back-flipping through the air in glee and lighting the Bog Thorn aflame with Force lightning on the dismount. As the Flower howled in sudden pain and fled through the halls, the Mysterious Somebody floated leisurely in the opposite direction, brainstorming further revenge.
|1 2 INTRODUCTION TO EVIL|