Love & Plunder – 2

Here’s the thing, killing people is fine and all some for people as a career, but I just can’t get into it.  I know I was trained to be an assassin specifically but I tried that and it just doesn’t do anything for me.  After I got away from the Red Room I did a couple hits and all it consists of is one rich douche giving you some money to kill some other rich douche.  You spend three days freezing your ass off in a ghillie suit lying in a rocky defile and then you shoot a guy in the head from 600 yards.  Boring. 

I spent the first part of my life doing all this training and turning myself into the perfect human weapon for what?  It wasn’t just that it was too easy, it also seemed so pointless.  If I’m going to kill someone I want it to be for a reason that means something.  Like because they said my hair isn’t cute.  Because it is.  It is cute.

I’m not in it for the money.  Don’t get me wrong, the money is nice, but that’s not what I’m after.  It’s hard to explain exactly because my motivation is not that I want to test myself, or that I’m an action junkie or a thrill-seeker, I just want to use my skills.  Does that make sense?  Ducks gotta swim and I gotta . . . do what I do. 

I tried ripping off drug dealers for a while like Omar on the Wire but that was even less interesting than murder for hire.  That really only gets hot if you hang around and wait for retaliation from the people you rob and that would be an insane thing to do.  My training would make me a good con artists but that sounds even more boring than shooting people.  Spending months getting some geezer to hand over their fortune?  Gag. 

In the final analysis there was really only one option for me, supercrime.  Supercrime is like normal crime only louder and stupider and with a lot more spandex and goggles.  A guy in a home-made “Fear Suit” trying to steal a jewel from a museum because he needs that jewel to power his fear-ray that’s going to make the kids who beat his flabby ass in HS pay turn into lizards is insane, but it’s not boring.   

Once I made the decision to go down the path of supercrime it wasn’t hard to get hooked up with one of these cape and cowel guys, they’re always on the lookout for minions and they love having a girl on their team, I don’t think they get laid much as a rule.  My first time out was with a group calling themselves the Powerlords because of course they were called that. 

One of the guys on the team was actually named The Powerlord but he was not the main guy of the Powerlords even though the team was named after him, most likely because he was dumb as bucket of mud.   Tasklord was the smartest of the group, smart enough to let Shadowlord be the leader.   

Tasklord is a non-powered type like me, maybe that’s why he wanted to take me under his wing.   Tasklord is a dumb name but I suppose he was trying to copy Taskmaster, ride on those coattails a little.  Tasky was a competent doer of evil but if he had been smart what he would have done is stayed off the front lines and sold his gadgets to other criminals.  He’s no Tony Stark but he knocked together some good tech. 

Of course he isn’t that smart, which is why he was with me and the other Powerlords taking hostages at the local mall.  For you see the Powerlords had been thwarted time and again (twice) in their attempts to do crime by the Protectors.  So they had set up an ambush for the Protectors’ heavy hitter, Guardian, and put him in the hospital.  The plan was to threaten to blow up the mall and kill a bunch of people unless the remaining Protectors came out to face them, the idea being that without Guardian the Powerlords could finally take the Protectors on and win. 

It’s exactly the kind of insane plan I was looking for.   Nothing about it made any sense, but I was going to do my dandiest to help the Powerlords get their revenge.   

Shadowlord’s darkness powers aren’t all that useful in combat but Powerlord is a beast, he might have been able to take on the rest of the Protectors by himself.  There’s probably good money to be made going around finding people like him who are medium fish in tiny ponds and setting them up as goons for better villains in return a finder’s fee.  Maybe I should make an app for that. 

Powerlord might have carried the day for the Powerlords if not for the fact that the Protectors weren’t the only ones that turned up to answer their challenge.  Broadcasting your evil plan on social media isn’t the best way to call out only one particular group.   

Before the Protectors even showed up a K-Pop kid with a magic skateboard did an ollie (or whatever) off Shadowlord’s noggin.  I couldn’t help but laugh at that dope standing there holding his head like it was an old slapstick comedy routine.  Tasky could have shot him down easily as he skated around the mall doing kick-flips but he’s not that much of a stone-cold killer to murder a teenager. 

And that’s when the super football players showed up.  Remember a few years back when that meteor fell on that semi-pro football team and a couple of them got powers?  Of course you don’t, who would remember that?!   

It wasn’t even anyone good like a QB or a linebacker, they’re a punter and a special teams guy and a couple cheerleaders.  They’re called the Kickers.  Which might be an even worse name than the Powerlords.  The Kickers showed up and then the rest of the Protectors and between them and the Korean kid on the skateboard we were outnumber like 4 to 1.  So much for that plan. 

I had a blast.  I got to spray a super-cheerleader in the eyes with mace and beat up a guy with a “sonic hammer” so it was worth it for me.  Shadowlord and Powerlord got captured but Tasky and I made our escape.  Which as far as supervillainy goes is about as a good an outcome as you can hope for. 


Once I had Extremis running through my veins (genes?  I don’t really know what is it) and they confirmed that I was not going to die right away I got away from those AIM people.  I don’t know how anyone bought into their act, the three main players in that outfit looked like mirror universe versions of Brad Pitt, Jason Statham, and Megan Fox.  They were so obviously evil I don’t know how they got that operation off the ground.  GoFundMe? 

Because here’s the thing, they weren’t recruiting angry vets who were mad about their injuries and wanted revenge on America, as far as I could tell the other test cases were mostly ra-ra gung-ho vets that wanted to be healed so they could get back to fighting for their country.  It would have been really interesting to see how mirror universe Brad Pitt convinced them that kidnapping the president and killing Tony Stark was a good thing to do for the country but I didn’t stick around for that.  Which was a smart move since they all died on that ship. 

Funny thing about signing up for illegal genetic experimentation with a 95% fatality rate run by obviously evil copies of celebrities , you don’t really think about what you’re going to do afterwards in the event that it works.  At least I didn’t.   

Because of my disease I was home schooled and never left the house much.  So at first I just enjoyed my body.  Not like that you pervs.  Okay, well, a little like that, I did visit some brothels but mostly I just ran around, literally I mean, and played pick-up basketball.  I don’t want to say that it was the first time in my life that I had fun because that makes it sound like my parent’s didn’t do a good job providing for me, but maybe I can say that it was the first time that I felt free.   

It bums me out when I see people that don’t value their health.  I know it wouldn’t do any good but I want to grab them and shake them (which could kill them with how strong I am now) and tell them to get off the couch and get out there and swim and jump and run and play while they can.  We don’t have that long on this earth and out of the time that we do have we have not even half allows you to go nuts and do whatever you want physically.  At least that’s the case for everyone else, I’ll be in great shape forever.  Until I explode.   

The problem with freedom is that it’s very expensive.  I wanted the freedom to travel anywhere and do anything.  I wanted the freedom to pay some rich lunatic to take me into space.  I wonder if Extremis is strong enough to keep me alive through a failed SpaceX launch.  Hopefully I’ll get to find out some day.   

Making money matters worse is some woman showed up claiming to be with AIM saying that I owed them, either cash or service.  I don’t know if she’s actually from AIM but when I told her to stick it a bunch of dudes with super-strength who showed up and kicked my ass real good, so she’s not someone I can ignore either way.   

I’m not about to give up my freedom to become an AIM lackey so I chose the I’ll pay you back for my superpowers option.  There’s probably a way to make lots of money by being really hard to kill but I can’t think what it is yet.  I looked up all these dangerous jobs like mining and handling radioactive waste and they all have crappy pay.  How does that make sense?  Until I figure out a better way I decided to get into the muscle for hire business.   

I was on Hench and Lackey for a while but there were all kinds of drama between those two and somehow Ant-Man was involved.  I don’t want to tangle with Ant-Man, I’ve heard that he goes up your butt and then returns to normal size and rips you apart.  I never took a job from either of those but I found another app called iMinion that seemed alright.   

This Dilbert looking guy hired me and a lizardman and a big dude wearing Ren-fair clothes to guard him doing a drug deal.  He only got 20 grand for the deal and then he turned around and each of us 5 so he paid out more than he got himself in the end.  Doesn’t seem like a good business plan to me. 

Second time out with Dilbert the lizardman tried to steal all the money and drugs and I ended up fighting him and the Dilbert guy got shot in the face and died.  I didn’t get paid but at least he couldn’t give me a bad rating on iMinion.  There should be a way for me to rate the other guys I’ve worked with on there but there isn’t.  Zero stars for you lizard guy.   

After that I got hooked up with a guy called The Prince who is a middleman for various supervillains.  He set me up with a robot and a guy with a laser and another guy who just threw grenades to rob a train.   You’d think that since I was the only guy with real powers I would have been in charge but the laser guy and the grenade guy were both dicks and had to be in charge.  They argued the whole time.   

The robot got smashed by the train and the other two got grabbed by some Civil War looking superhero flying around on like a ghost-horse of something but I got the microchips and got away.  Seems like I should have gotten the entire payday since I was the only one who came back but that’s not how it worked.   

Not a great start to my career but right after that is when I first saw Helen.   

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