I tried to look at my situation with a positive light. I had no resources other than the clothes on my back and my extensive training, everything else had been stripped from me. I wanted a challenge didn’t I? Well this is about as challenging as life gets. What greater triumph could there be than clawing my way back from the absolute bottom? Note to self, register domain name absolute bottom.
On the other hand though there’s looking at things in a positive light and then there’s being a delusional lunatic. My situation sucked a big hairy dick. But as they say when there’s only one dick on front of you there’s naught else you can do.
I slipped out of Santo Marco with a group of crazy rich Americans (Texans even perhaps, more American than American) that were in country to hunt mutants in some Most Dangerous Game type bullshit. I had heard rumors of that happening when Santo Marco was mutant hating capital #1 but the fact that they’re still doing it with President Mutant Superman and his super friends in charge of the country is beyond lunacy.
Once we were safely upriver a ways (safe for me anyway) I liquidated those morons and just like that I had myself a fine boat, a bunch of guns, a couple smartphones and a laptop. Not to mention a very nice cowboy hat. Things were looking up already. I spent a night in a little town called Golfinhao where everyone was packed into the single bar to watch football and drink.
What I didn’t know is that French Guiana is more paranoid about border security than a bunch of rednecks with AR-15s. People try to sneak across the border to steal gold you see, which I should have known about. I fully admit that this take over my own country idea wasn’t as well researched as it should have been. The border is patrolled by locals and no less than French national police agencies not to mention the god damn French Foreign Legion. Which is a real thing.
Long story short, I assumed not having a passport would be no big deal getting out of Santo Marco. You know what they say about assumptions. So for the second time in two days I had to break out of jail. Thankfully busting out of a French Guiana border crossing holding cell wasn’t any more challenging than a Santa Marco murder prison. I bullied my way onto another ship that might as well have had “illegal foreign operatives” written on the side by threatening to rat them out. Always a good way to ingratiate yourself to someone.
I told them I didn’t care about their smuggling or espionage or whatever the hell they were up to, I just needed a way to get out of the country. They only tried to murder me once so they must have believed me. Two days later out in the Atlantic they rendezvoused with a giant seaplane and abandoned ship. They did rig the boat with explosives to kill me once they were far enough away but I disarmed them. Can’t blame them for trying.
The Red Room didn’t have a large unit on maritime navigation or open sea boating in their curriculum but I was able to blunder my way to Port of Spain without dying. The Trinidadians weren’t concerned about my lack of documentation. I guess when you’re an island nation without mineral resources border security isn’t as big of a deal.
Congotanga has no extradition laws and the government is controlled by the Pride or some other supervillain group like that, which makes it a good place for super-crook to lay low and look for work. On the other hand if someone’s looking for you those selfsame qualities make it a place that you don’t want to stay for too long because it’s a place people assume that you might be hiding at.
Malligator and I kept our heads down long enough to hopefully throw AIM Lady off our trail and then we joined up with Terror Claw and a guy I knew from Lizard Tribe called Mamu for a caper where we pulled some lost surveyor out of the jungle. It almost seems like the kind of thing a superhero would do only I don’t think the people that paid us to do it are people the surveyor guy wanted to be saved by. Still, we saved a guy which was a nice change of pace, and we got some walking around money, which was great.
My plan for a career in supervillainy, as much as I had one, was to remain an independent contractor. I never wanted to be part of an organization. I wanted to choose the jobs that I wanted to do and work when I wanted to work. I only became more committed to this notion after I Helen showed me that not every super-boss HAS to be an asshole, they’re just being assholes because they want to.
Times were tough though. The supervillain for hire apps weren’t doing much for me and I didn’t have much in the way of contacts left to call on. Mamu and I signed up with a group that shall remain nameless. They had uniforms like that GI Joe guy, Shockwave, just a blue suit with a friggin blue knit wool ski mask. I never sweat so much in my life wearing that damn mask.
I tried to convince Malligator to join up with us but he said there was no way he was going to be a hench. He said something like this –
“I don’t wanna live a life like that. Just going with the flow, you know? Never doing anything, just hoping you get by okay. A lot of people don’t care what happens in their life. They just want extra cheese on their pizza. They want to watch models get voted off contests on TV. But you and me, we’re not like that. You and me are the types of guys that other people tell stories about. At least you used to be.”
That hurt a little, I won’t lie, but I should have listened to him. Bet on yourself right?
Our first gig for the Big Blue Leader was to put a scare into some Lois Lane type that was sniffing around his Big Plan. We were just supposed to steal the back-ups off her computer and wreck her apartment, nothing rough, to send a message. Easy enough right? Of course not.
Opti-Girl showed up to kick out assess like 8 seconds after we broke down the door to the apartment. That name makes her sound like a cartoon mascot for an eyeglass hut in Wal-Mart but Opti-Girl is no joke, as my three broken ribs and busted tailbone can confirm. Mamu and the other boys in blue were all “how did she get there so fast?!” and I told them that obviously the mild-mannered reporter lady we were trying to intimidate IS Opti-Girl. And people say I’m dense.
I don’t know it’s because of the Tempo or because of AIM Woman’s treatments or why, but Extremeis isn’t working its magic half as well as it used to for me. I’m not as strong, not as fast, and I take longer to heal than I used to. I did heal up in time from the Opti-Girl ass kicking to try and steal a satellite and get my ass burned up by some fire guy. Yipee.
See, this is how it goes when you sign on as part of a thing like HYDRA or whatever. When you’re a hired gun you don’t have deal with the fallout of your jobs, you just do them and move along. But when you’re part of Evil Inc when the Glorious Leader’s insane plan doesn’t work and he’s scrambling to fix things it’s like a domino effect of getting your ass kicked. Each attempt to salvage the plan is less sound and more desperate than the last. It’s like that Mousetrap board game, it’s a whole bunch of crap that breaks while the mouse laughs at you.
End result, Big Blue Boss and his entire organization go down in flames thanks to Megaman (not the video game guy, that would have been cool though) and his Mega-pals. The only ones that made it out were me and some porcupine guy.
I have a knack for picking losers it seems, but I somehow manage to land on my feet.