Chapter 4: Confrontation At Finch Tower
FINCH TOWER: 2ND FLOOR
"He's running towards us boss!" the leader of the squad of night skulls said terrified into his speaker phone, "he's looking right at us, he's almost at the door!"
"Shut up and grow some!" The brains voice yelled back, "you have weapons designed to counteract him remember, just shoot him quickly, even he's not that fast…not with the P.E special drugs I supplied to you and your men! You have the access keys needed to get to the maintenance stairway. Don't you dare fail me!"
"You heard the boss, keep you guns on him!" the night skull ushered his men to cover the door bellow the second floor of the mezzanine floors.
They all aimed their guns and watched as the vigilante they had all become afraid of as much as the brain of crime run up the outside parking lot outside the building, eyes blazing.
They decided to place their belief in the fact that these guns had been designed to kill the shadow knight, and hope their boast that they were the worst guns in town… wasn't an insult but a commendation.
They then watched something astonishing happen, three feet to the door, the vigilante seemed to implode into a mass of darkness which flew foreword until it struck the door.
Like some creature from a nightmare, the shadow mass became liquid like and began seeping through the tiny cracks in the door, like black ink, then it exploded in size when it made it through the doors tiny cracks, in a second it became a shroud of darkness which engulfed the entire surface of the two floors, plunging the night skulls into pitch black, the lights on the ceiling had even been covered by the shadow mess.
"Madre Dios!" one of the Night skulls exclaimed.
"Not even close" a disembodied voice coming from all around the night skulls.
"Switch the goggles on now!" the night skull leader ordered, "now!"
As they did, they found out that when they did, they all became blinded by some kind of darkness.
The leader was the only one who wasn't affected he watched as his fellow night skulls all started fumbling, and waving their hands frantically in front of their night vision goggles, "I can't see!, I can't see!" they all said in their own ways.
"HA HA HA HA HA HA" the voice laughed sinisterly.
The lead night skull suddenly heard shrieks and screams from all around him, flashes of light and swishing sounds, followed by more laughter.
Then suddenly, dead silence.
The silence was enough to terrify the lead night skull.
Suddenly the dark shroud began to shrink away from all around him, away from the walls, and the surface of the floor.
Revealing all 199 of the night skulls members on the floor, unconscious or stunned, groaning in pain all around him.
The darkness then formed back into the vigilante in the middle of the room, who when he was rendered blood and flesh again, was standing right in front of the lead night skull that was standing there, petrified.
"I remember you!" the shadow knight said darkly, "you tried to kill the hostages in Kishi Tower when your boss told you too"
"How…" the lead night skull said, finally finding his voice, "the boss said…"
"that these night vision goggles and the guns would work on me?" the shadow knight cut in, "I already know what the guns do that's why I didn't fall for that trick again, I adapted my fighting strategy, and the goggles" the knight held up his hand, from every one of the night skulls on the grounds night vision goggles, flew out animated darkness which then began to hover the shadow knights hand, "I can manipulate shadows… especially the ones cast over the eyes by night vision goggles…..HA HA HA HA HA!"
In that second the shadow knight punched the lead night skull who flew backwards a couple feet, landing on his side, moaning in pain.
Suddenly the knight waved his hand and in a cloud of "smoke", three of the access keys to the security door appeared in his fingers.
The lead night skull in shock when he saw that reached into his pocket and found his access card was missing…because it was there in the knight's hand.
"And the ones in pockets as well" the knight finished then began his march toward the door, "if I were you, I would tell your men to vacate the building. This place is going to be blown back to the Stone Age by the military in less than an hour"
"Wait!" the night skull yelled, "Kill me I beg you!"
The knight froze for a second, and the night skull could see the look of annoyance on the knight's face through the mask.
"Why would I kill you?" the shadow knight asked annoyed, "I've seen your mind, your crimes, your penalty will be ensured by the legal system…besides I only kill monsters, monsters like your boss!"
"You fail and he'll kill me for failing to stop you, and even if you do kill him, it will be open season on the night skulls by the criminals and the police of the city…the whole freaking army of the U.S.A will be sent in here to hunt us down like terrorists. Then when they catch us we'll be tried for crimes against humanity. That means the death penalty or life imprisonment in any of the country's worst Prisons. You think I want that kind of punishment, I choose death. You hate criminals, I'm a criminal….KILL ME!"
Unknown to the night skull, the knight was fighting with the thought against his dark half.
"KILL HIM, KILL THIS WASTE OF SKIN…YOU KNOW HOW COURTS ARE LIKE, THIS FOOL DESERVES DEATH!" the evil dark half of the knight bellowed in the knight's mind.
"SHUT UP! BOTH OF YOU!" the knight screamed, then grabbed the night skull by the lapel, eyes blazing behind the mask, "now you listen to me. I won't kill you! I want you to suffer for your crimes as you should. YOU joined the brains goons and WILLINGLY chose to murder, steal, bully, extortion innocent people. YOU stood by okay with the brain plunging the city into chaos. YOU willingly let innocent people and criminals become infected by the brains gas knowing that it was to solely make lunar citizens tear each other apart, and YOU stood by and let this crime against humanity happen, YOU and your men helped make this happen and NO ONE forced you to do all of that! You were fine with this happening, so long as it wasn't the YOU out there in all of that death and destruction!" The shadow knight finished by dropping the night skull, who sat there watching the Shadow knight run off to the door, "You deserve whatever comes to you after tonight!"
Using the key cards the knight opened the security door and transforming into a mass of shadows flew up the stairwell and kept on flying up.
The night skull took this opportunity and took off running, remembering what the knight had said about an Air strike on the tower.
Followed by the rest of them after they all regained energy to run, carrying a few of their fellow skulls out with them leaving no one else in the building, but me, the brain…and the fate of lunar city.
My mother now realized that she had been foolish in being worried about letting the cities afflicted, poor and now homeless into her home.
No one had attempted any of the things she had been afraid of when she let them in, she realized they were nothing like the Night skulls or any of the vicious street folk she had seen or heard about.
Instead, all of them, her few fellow rich who had made it here to safety, the middle class and street homeless from the far side itself, all united by a common goal. Help get through this crisis.
A crowd of people had already gathered with my family around the TV set, watching News coverage on the siege on the city.
"As the army, National Guard and remaining Cops prepare for the last stand as the horde of the city's affected citizens, I want to assure viewers who may have a mother, father, uncle or any relative out there in the affected army…the military which is aware of the situation is using rubber bullets to keep the affected back. But this last stand may not be enough to stop the onslaught on the city as the city's poor, rich and middle class citizens find themselves bottlenecked in the last place of refuge in the city. But we've just gotten word that a desperate Air strike on the supposed source of the city's gas cloud, I implore any people still trapped in the area surrounding the strike zone in Upper Lunar zone around Finch Tower to prepare themselves as best as they can for the bombardment. We now go to our news crew surrounding the strike zone" the anchorman finished.
"Thank you jack" the news crew who had stupidly stayed on the roof to record the events bellow came back on the screen, "the area around the strike zone is clear as far as we can tell but look at this bellow…" the camera crew then moved the camera to the street bellow to show the night skulls with the still defeated and trapped affected people behind them, the night skulls were pounding on the wall and opening their guns ammo to try and get out, "bellow us are the remains of the night Skull gang trying to escape the wall that seemed to have been made by our urban legend the shadow knight. He was last seen "evaporating" yes you heard that right, Evaporating into the tower through the front door, after that these night skulls were seen running out of there like sissies! Now this is just speculation but this reporter heard from the scream of one of those thugs bellow that the target the military's going to strike is the Finch industries tower" the reporter said, "back to you jack"
"Thank you, despite vague reports on our city's recent vigilante's existence, something went into Dorian Finch industries, but was it the much debated Vigilante, or a lone soldier we don't really know for sure. But one thing is for sure, if this air strike works or not…the city will be forever changed by what is happening here. We got this radio message by the City council who has barricaded themselves in city hall an hour ago, detailing the changes to come for the city. They say they are appalled at how ineffective the city's law keepers were to stop this attack on our great city, and how a criminal like the brain could have so many contacts with various networks in the city, reaching from the courts, the police and even staff in city hall as well. They promise that when the city survives this night they will do everything in their power to increase the efficiency of the police force and the courts and also work with the city's various businesses and the forces of our sister City, Technogopolis to make our cities police and their weapons as good or better than theirs in personal and weapons and also…defense. They also said among the list to help improve the city from the ashes will be billionaire, philanthropist Martin Kishi who had been spearheading the movement for improvements but had to back out due to "outside" interference, we welcome Mr. Kishi's services…"
"Now you do!" my father said chastising the council.
"This just in, the affected have crossed the river and are almost in shooting range with the affected" the news anchorman interrupted reading the fax from the council.
"this is it" my mother said, holding my father's hand and holding her daughter tight, fearing for her family, the people and the other families here in the mansion under their shelter, and also for her son wherever he was, fearing for all these lives.
Little kessie was beside our new housemistress Sarah Mc Mullion wrapped in her favorite blanket given to her by her great aunt Rachel and held comfortingly by her mother with Sarah stroking the scarred Childs hair.
"Are you scarred child?" asked Sarah.
Little Kessie nodded.
"Well don't you worry child, when things are their darkest…a light always shines out to set things right, we'll be alright. I promise" Sarah assured her.
Little Kessie then smiled, now feeling a bit braver.
RESEDENTIAL BEACH AREA:
The long picket line of Army, National Guard and cops armed to the teeth with anti-riot weaponry, rubber bullets, stun batons and shields got ready for the final battle as the horde of affected citizens waded across the river.
"Shooters on 3!" the sergeant in charge ordered, like clockwork all the ones with the anti-riot guns took aim.
When the affected were halfway across the river, the sergeant gave the order, "FIRE!"
A hail of rubber bullets flew through the air into the slowly approaching wave of crazed affected.
They struck the targets hard but not lethally.
Some were knocked down, there was some blood…but these people would be fine.
That was the point of switching the artillery to this instead of real bullets; they had gotten a call from one of their squads who had heard about the planned air strike on the source of the gas that had done this, all they had to do was keep the affected at bay until then.
But this wasn't working well, for everyone the managed to get out of the game, more came rushing foreword across the river, they didn't have enough rubber bullets to face half of an entire city!
"Those S.L.E.E.T guys better hurry up, were getting our butts handed to us here!" one of the soldiers hollered.
"Yeah I can see that" his buddy replied.
This wasn't working!
"What's the matter Dorian, afraid?" asked Clarice as she watched from her cocoon at the brain of crime, Dorian, pace back and forth…holding the cure mutagen vial in his right hand, and the power mutagens in his hand, there were only 5 of them left, "you afraid that the woman with the scale and sword is out to get you?"
The brain chuckled, "and I thought it was the knight who had a sharp tongue…NO!" he said sharply, "I was just wondering if I should fight the knight sportingly, or not….. I overcharged him with that bath and somehow he managed to either push back or eliminate the dark mutagen virus I infected him with, by way of that gauntlet I put him through and his lack of knowledge of the mutagen and my Mutagen guns yesterday. Right now he's supercharged but running out of time, he needs this cure before his powers hit empty in order to cure himself of the virus and what it's doing to his personality. Sportingly, or unsporting…" the brain paused for a moment, then popped the caps of the power mutagen vials of and drank all of them save one, that one he put in his coats pocket.
Then he clutched his chest as the mutagen took effect, tossing one of the vials at the stairwell where it kept flying until it hit the wall, shattering and tumbling down the stairwell till it hit floor 40, where it came to a stop on the steps.
Two red eyes looked down at the shattered vial, realizing what it was, then looked up and continued their ascent.
DALTON MILITARY BASE:
At the army base 200 miles away from lunar city, a fighter jet began to take off, joined by several others.
Their orders were to launch their payload outside the city and let the missiles computers do the rest so as to not risk any of the pilots becoming affected by the gas by flying into it.
"Alright boys" the squad leader said to his fellow fighters, "the target is a civilian building occupied by terrorists. The same terrorists that S.L.E.E.T tells our superiors are the ones who instigated this attack on lunar. Our orders are to blow that building to the ground, as to destroy a gas distribution system built into the tower. We do that and the gas attack ends…let's do it, Mach 2!"
FINCH TOWER: DORRIANS LEVEL
I slinked out of the shadows of the stairwells walls, become my solid form again, and drawing my shadow guns I quietly lurked down the halls leading to Dorian's office room, I then heard a mumbling sound up ahead.
As I slowly entered Dorian's office, I checked the corners with my gun.
Hearing the muffled screams again, and this time with my shadow vision I saw them.
In one corner, trapped around the torso and muzzled by miasmic restrains was the D.A who was trying to scream something at me, then I heard another muffled scream…this time a female one.
I looked across the room to see pinned up on the wall was Clarice, the D.A's daughter, she was struggling to get free from her similar bonds as well.
I looked around cautiously, "I know it's a trap, but I don't see anything!"
I walked over the black carpet over to Clarice; I placed a finger to the miasmic gag around her mouth, negating the bonds out of existence back into normal shadows.
"LOOK OUT!" she screamed to me.
In that moment I realized that a black rug couldn't still be black if I was looking at it through my shadow vision, which when in the shadow realm…it would be the same color as the realm, dark purple, and blazing with energy…not black in both normal and shadow vision through my eyes.
I barely had time to react as the "carpet" behind me billowed up and flew at me.
I leapt out of the wall before the mass of shadows struck me, landing on the couch feet first, crouching like a tiger.
The mass of shadows struck the wall beside Clarice like a wall of black slime, before gaining composure back into the familiar form of the brain of crime.
"I was wondering when I would get that power!" the brain said thrilled, the he eyed me, "ready for this knight, I know I am. It's going to be a shame killing you, but business is business and a poison Pill is a poison pill"
"You call this a business?" I asked sword drawn circling the room, with Dorian doing the same.
"I call it fun" the brain answered, "but I don't see why I can't get some money from the things I do. Who would want to do something like this for free? Straight out of a comic book right, boy?"
"Ask me this, how much money did that terrorist organization pay you to plan up one of the biggest mass murders in the history of the U.S.A, and betray your country, humanity!" I demanded.
"More than you can count, knight…" the brain grinned, "besides who said I wasn't planning under the table on this one, eh? I show those terrorist fools how it works. They gas the capitol. I help them mass produce this stuff so then can gas the world…yes those losers can do that kiddo… but once they do I turn the tables. This stuff is based on the first raw mutagen I first accidentally tested on me, so it is tied to my mutated genes, my mind…just like that gas is out there and all of those people I have hold on are tied to my minds power.
Same thing will go for the gas that F.O.W.L, F.A.R.C.E or whatever these idiots call themselves, the gas will be the same as this one in lunar, and when they launch it globally…"
My eye's narrowed with hate as I saw the logic in his plan, show the terrorists how the gas worked, but not telling them how it was produced and how it fully worked, they use it for their own plans, which would be to gas the planet in some kind of crazy world domination plot, but they would then after have their plan be hijacked by Dorian instead.
"Then why make the city kill itself?" asked a confused Clarice, "if you didn't plan on placing a ransom on the city"
"Because this is all a game to him!" the shadow knight said through gritted teeth.
"And the world and everything in it are my playthings, I win this game knight, I have the cure you need for the poison I put in you veins, and the only cure for the gas is something I know you won't do…" the brain said smugly.
"Kill you?" the shadow knight tilted his head in question, Dorian not seeing the smile under his mask.
"Correct, and we know you don't kill people and criminals because that would be evil right, and you hate…." Dorian began to mimic my philosophy mockingly.
"So be it!" I said simply, then yelled bloody murder and leapt at the brain, slashing at him with my shadow blade.
The brain barely had time to recover from his surprise to block my attack, he had almost fully transformed into shadow form when my blade struck the right side of his mask and cut it clean of.
But the brain had turned into living shadow form before the blade could cut his skin.
The brain howled in pain from the impact of his mask being half destroyed, but then quickly brought up his own shadow katana made by the powers he had in his control and the strength of his own mind.
"WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING!" demanded Dorian who was a little surprised!
"Saving the city!" the shadow knight said, with a grin "thanks for confirming my theory on the gas"
"You don't kill!" the brain said in defiance.
"It's a recent development…" the shadow knight said simply, "I've realized there is a difference between the slime of criminality, and the monsters who do this because they get a kick out of it, the mad dogs that need to be put down!"
"Jeeze!" the brain said, "And people call me a monster?"
"You ARE a monster, and monsters I can kill without becoming the villain like you. That's how MY mutagen mutation works! Your life over the people of this city you vile slime….you lose!"
The brain then vanished into the shadows, causing my katana to strike the wall.
Realizing he was hiding in the shadow realm, but restricted to shadow walk out of here due to the bombs bellow the building being designed to blow in both realms, with a shockwave that could pull a shadow walker out of the shadow realm and back into reality easily, I grabbed my shadow guns and kept my eyes on all of the shadows in the room.
Dorian couldn't manipulate the shadows like I could…just his own and use the shadows like portals.
But I was aware that he had drank some of the last power mutagen, and had one more left, one sip from that would bring the brain back up to full power if I managed to wear him down to low level…he also had the healing mutagen that I needed to cure my infection in my mind by his dark tainted mutagen, the dark me that I could slowly feel starting to gain ground again as my own powers started to drain as the "adjustment" stage began to crawl up whenever I used my powers.
I figured I only had 10% power left.
"Your stalling knight…" the brains disembodied voice spoke from the shadows in the room, "I think I now know what that horrible noise I hear approaching the city is. Ultrasonic waves….fighter jets. You got the military to order an air strike on this place! Clever, but we both know you haven't got time on three levels to kill me and cure yourself and get yourself and the D.A group back there… the dark self-inside you, the one I myself embraced for my own dark side, when it takes you over you will make a fine weapon to use to keep the other terrorists in line in my future empire"
"Guess again, the tainted dark me?" I shook my head, "he wants to kill you too!"
"What a disappointment, I guess I'll just wear you down and kill you anyway!" the brain's voice said in mock sadness.
"Likewise, you get your powers from temporary mutagen drinks; I got mine by having my blood mutated by it in its raw form, not tainted by stomach acids and food. Come on out and let's see who runs out of power first" I challenged, "Before this place gets blown to your new home down below!"
"LET'S DANCE, SHADOW KNIGHT!" Dorian's voice said in rage.