Part 11 – Freedom Squad Nanowrimo
“Touchdown!” said Ion. “This is your captain speaking, the Freedom Flyer has landed. Please return your tables to their upright positions and deplane before the bad guys get here.”
Cori breathed a sigh of relief. The jolt was from the landing. The doors of the Freedom Flyer opened and the team quickly disembarked.
“We should hire a pilot,” suggested Ion.
Rigel was busy trying to watch the top of the Megalopolis Tower, seeing if she could spot Nightstar. There was a light flashing, which had to be his sword. The light suddenly faded as what appeared to be smoke billowed around the base of the restaurant.
Nightstar’s thoughts filled Cori’s mind. “Death Queen and lots of baddies… slicing out of here with Polt, hope he’s ready… oops… park’s a bit out of my range.”
Rigel saw Nightstar appear in the sky holding on to Daniel who was now in his gray and white Poltergeist armor. They were hundreds of feet up. Nightstar thought, “Need to adjust for altitude when I’m figuring out distances… Daniel!”
Poltergeist grabbed Nightstar by the arms and was carrying him through the air. A bright red and white comet streaked toward them.
“No!” she said and launched herself in the air, hoping she could get close enough to telekinetically stop Defiance before he hurt Nightstar and Daniel. Unlike Nightstar, she didn’t have any issue calculating speeds and distances, and she knew that she wasn’t going to be anywhere close when Defiance hit them. Mentally, she yelled to them, “Activate Daniel’s force field or teleport or something… Defiance is coming!”
Nightstar’s thoughts flew back. “Not enough power. He’s going to hold me and I’m going to try and swing. Maybe my sword can take him out.”
“His momentum will still drive him into you. You’ll be smashed,” she thought. Her heart pounded. She didn’t know how, but she had to stop this.
With a blaze of light, Starlight soared past her. An echoing boom shook the city’s skyscrapers as he collided with Defiance. Both of them went flying away from each other.
Cori changed course, heading after Starlight. Her communicator crackled, “Hi, Rigel, I know it’s a bad time, but do we have a plan?” asked Ion. “The bad guys found us, and Rockslide and I have seen this movie before.”
“I’m catching Starlight. Nightstar and Poltergeist will be there to help in a second,” she said, and then thought, “Nightstar, Daniel, help Ion and Rockslide! I’ve got Starlight.”
She reached out her hand toward Starlight and envisioned her telekinesis wrapping around him, slowing him and gently placing him on the ground. His speed decreased, and she realized that she had caught him.
She suddenly felt an intense feeling of danger. She put all of her telekinetic energy into creating a force field around herself just as Defiance smashed into her. She plummeted to the earth. Starlight was going to have to be okay.
Rigel landed in the grass. Her force field was mostly intact, and she realized that she somehow must have reflexively caught herself as the impact wasn’t nearly as bad as it should have been.
Defiance hovered in the air above her, his face contorted in anger. She could see every one of his muscles under his red and white uniform. At one time, he had been considered the most powerful hero on earth.
“You’re the one! You’re the one that the Ace of Spades chose to lead his team!” he said as he clenched his fists.
Cori focused her mind and lashed out with her telekinesis. The power of the blow knocked him to the ground, but he stood almost immediately. She tried a telepathic blast, hoping to overwhelm his nervous system. He cried out and brought his hands to the sides of his head.
“Okay, this might be the right tactic,” she said to herself, as she increased the intensity of the mental assault.
A pain stabbed into her forehead. She thought it might be some kind of mental backlash. Vaguely, she remembered that her father had warned her about such things. But Defiance shouldn’t have any mental abilities…
Nonetheless, he found a way to break off her attack. With an animal sounding snarl, he said, “I’m going to crush you, and everyone else who tries to get into my mind. He can’t control me, and you can’t either.”
“The Ace of Spades?” said Cori. “Is that who is trying to control you?”
“And he’s failed!” shouted Defiance. “Just like you have.”
A thunderous punch struck her telekinetic field, followed by a second and a third. It was taking most of Rigel’s concentration to keep the telekinetic field intact. She was on the defensive and if one of those punches connected, she wasn’t sure if she would survive.
“Stop!” she shouted. “Listen, Defiance, please. You are a superhero. I am a superhero. Talk to me. Stop helping these villains. You don’t think the Ace of Spades is manipulating you, but maybe he is. He might be manipulating me too. Let’s join forces and stop him.”
The blows stopped. Defiance stood in front of her, his muscles tensed, his fists clenched, but he was no longer attacking. “Are you trying to trick me?” he asked.
“No,” Rigel said softly. “I’m trying to help you.”
There was a flash of light as Nightstar appeared beside Defiance. Before Rigel could react, he swung his psychic blade into the super-villain. There was a crackle of power, and while Defiance was staggered, he didn’t drop.
“Okay,” said Nightstar, “I’m impressed.” He whirled and lunged, striking Defiance again.
Defiance threw his arms back and howled. Then, he brought his arms forward to smash Nightstar. Defiance smashed the ground as Nightstar rolled over to Rigel.
“Drop the force field for a second, and let’s get back to the others,” he said.
This wasn’t the time to argue, though she was irritated at Nightstar’s timing. She almost had Defiance talking to her. She fell into his arms, and he cut a rift through the air as Defiance charged at them.
They were gone instantly, leaving Defiance to soar through empty air in his rage.
Ion didn’t like his current feeling of déjà vu. He dodged multiple shots from Barrage, even as darkness rose up all around him. Rockslide traded blows with Golem in the meantime. Ion wondered what possessed super-strong types to always square off against each other. Personally, he thought that if Rockslide had taken out Death Queen that they might have a better chance. Poltergeist was trying to use his special effects and technological wizardry to combat Death Queen’s magic.
“Okay,” said Ion to himself, “Rockslide versus Golem is a push. Death Queen has magic against Polt’s tech, advantage DQ. I wonder if I should tease her about having the same initials as an ice cream chain. Probably not. So, I need to figure out how to handle Barrage, but if we get Starlight, Nightstar and Rigel and all they have is Defiance…”
“What are you talking about, Ion?” asked Barrage. “And would you stay still? I’m not supposed to miss.”
“You are doing fine,” he said, “Trust me. Lots of ricochets from this electrical force field of mine. Tell you what, I’ll stay still when you run out of ammo. Besides, I figure you’re spending a fortune right now trying to shoot me. At this rate, you’ll go bankrupt even if you take me down.”
She stopped firing.
“Whoa, she does listen to me,” said Ion, who kept dodging and running despite the lack of incoming fire.
Suddenly, Barrage flew backward through the air to land with a loud clang on the side of the Freedom Flyer. Ion remembered that Poltergeist had magnetic powers. “Nice one, Polt, wherever you are!”
Poltergeist had designed his suit to render its wearer invisible by generating powerful electrical and magnetic fields which somehow bent light. Ion didn’t really understand how he did it, but it gave Poltergeist some excellent electrical blasts and lots of magnetic control as a side effect of the invisibility. A couple of jet boots completed the suit, along with a decent amount of some kind of mesh polymer armor.
“Ion…” came Poltergeist’s creepy modulated voice, “watch out.”
Golem was flying through the air in the direction of the Freedom Flyer.
“Right,” said Ion, hitting the dirt. Maybe Poltergeist had a bit too much magnetism. Golem flew over Ion’s head. There was a loud clang and a crunch as the large mystical robot or whatever he was struck the Freedom Flyer.
“Fools! There are more of us!” hissed Death Queen. She gestured in the air, and a large rocky creature somewhat similar to Rockslide appeared. At least, he was similar looking until he burst into flame. Once that happened, he resembled a walking volcano.
“Pyroclast, destroy them!” shrieked Death Queen.
With a flash of light, Rigel and Nightstar appeared.
“Are there any nearby fire hydrants?” asked Rigel. “That’s how I defeated him last time.”
“There’s a pond,” said Ion.
“That’ll work,” said Rigel. She reached a hand toward Pyroclast and he was lifted into the air with her telekinesis. “Young man, you need a bath I’m afraid.” She took off into the air with Pyroclast in tow.
“Fools,” said Death Queen.
Ion had enough. He fired off several bolts of electricity at her. Dark shields formed in the air in front of her, but Ion didn’t care. Rockslide was coming up behind her, and she wasn’t paying a bit of attention.
“Demagnetized,” said Barrage, as she slid off the Freedom Flyer.
“Thanks for the update,” said Nightstar as he thrust his psychic blade into her armor.
She stared down at the crackling blade. “My armor didn’t stop it.”
“It’s a psychic blade,” said Nightstar. “It’s all in your mind.”
Barrage fell face first into the grass.
Golem slid off the Freedom Flyer beside Ion and Nightstar. Just then, Poltergeist appeared.
“Out of power,” said Poltergeist.
“This is bad,” said Nightstar.
“Hit him,” shouted Ion. Rockslide had all but reached Death Queen. He didn’t want to stop now.
“It’s a psychic blade and Golem’s some kind of robot.”
Golem, for his part, tore a large section of the Freedom Flyer’s hull apart and swung it down at Poltergeist and Nightstar.
“Poltergeist!” yelled Nightstar as he dove and slashed a hole in reality. Somehow, he threw Poltergeist through. Unfortunately, Nightstar wasn’t fast enough to save himself.
Golem lifted his new weapon into the air and regarded Ion. “Oh, no,” said Ion, stopping the electrical blasts and running over to pick up Nightstar. “Hang on, Nightstar, I’m getting you out of here.”
Nightstar was heavier than he looked and some creepy dark smoke seemed to be swirling around him. Despite that, Ion managed to collect the fallen hero in time to see the shadow of the large piece of Freedom Flyer hull above him. Ion was down to sparks at the moment, which meant he was a lot slower than normal.
“This is going to hurt,” said Ion.
“Get away from my team!” yelled Rigel as Golem along with the hull piece flew up into the air. “And how dare you wreck one of our Freedom Flyers!”
Rockslide had reached Death Queen and slammed his stone fists against her mystical shields. She stumbled, but before he could finish her off, a red and white streak crashed into him.
Defiance was back.
“Villains, hardened criminals and general miscreants that trouble the good hard-working citizens of Megalopolis, please surrender to the nearest Terran authorities,” said Starlight in an amplified robotic voice. There was a slight reverb on the word authorities.
Golem crashed to the ground.
Ion heard Rigel’s voice in his mind. “Ion, get Nightstar to safety, and then try and get back and get Poltergeist out of here. I’m going to concentrate on Defiance. Hopefully, Starlight and Rockslide can help me deal with Death Queen and Golem.”
“I’ve got a decent idea,” thought Ion.
“Rigel,” he shouted, “Protector and all of the new recruits are inbound with an eta of only a minute or so. We also have Homeland’s Ultra Task Force inbound.”
“Excellent news, Ion,” replied Rigel with a big smile on her face. “Let’s see if we can make this a wrap before it gets too easy.”
“We are outnumbered. Defiance, this is pointless!” said Death Queen.
Defiance came soaring back, “No! We capture Poltergeist, and we force the truth out of him. I want to find out what she knows as well.” He pointed at Rigel.
“I’m not having us wait to go back to jail.” Death Queen gestured and the villains were shrouded in darkness.
Defiance’s voice could be heard as if from a great distance, “Stop! We can win!” His last word cut off abruptly.
When the mists cleared, they were gone. Freedom Squad was alone.
“It worked,” said Ion in astonishment.
Rigel landed beside him. “Don’t argue with success. Nicely done, but Defiance will strike again.”
She activated her communicator. “Protector, this is Rigel. We stopped them. How are things at base?”
There was no reply.
She sent out a telepathic message, “Alex?”
Posted on November 19, 2013, in Freedom Squad, HeroNet Files, NaNoWriMo and tagged Defiance, Freedom Squad, Harry Heckel, HeroNet, HeroNet Files, Ion, Megalopolis, Nanowrimo, Nanowrimo Novel, Nightstar, Rigel, superhero, Superhero Nanowrimo, Superhero team. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.