Longing to Avenge – An Avengers What If Story

April 14, 2021

The slightest change in a moment can alter history forever. These changes create infinite timelines and in one of those timelines, the Red Skull succeeded in eliminating his nemesis, Steve Rogers aka the first Captain America. The Invaders struggled against the Red Skull until they rescued a young Erik Lehnsherr as his magnetic powers were awakened. He joined the Allies as their secret weapon known as Magneto. Luckily, Dr. Abraham Erskine had not died and was able to continue to develop the Super Soldier Serum which led to a dynasty of government-sponsored Captain Americas. However, a later attack by forces led by Baron Zemo and the second Red Skull made the USA into a prolonged battleground.

The US government joined forces with scientists Arno Stark, Darren Cross, Reed Richards, and an AI-generated copy of Hank Pym. Along with Magneto and a team of powerful mutants, the US turned the tide and expelled Hydra from their borders. They then were able to use that collective genius to turn the United States into an authoritarian state with the excuse that it would protect its citizens from further Hydra incursions. However, there were of course those who rebelled against the US Government’s strict laws. They suffered greatly but they would be avenged.

“Are you sure that we’re safe down here?” Jessica Jones asked. “It would be a shame to set up a base in the stink of the sewers and then get caught.”

“My dear Captain,” Otto Octavius said with a charming smile. “I assure you that even the Vision could not detect us down here. As for the smell, my drones are even now installing air purifiers which should eventually remove the smell and make breathing a healthier endeavor.”

Jessica hung her shield on the wall. She and her friend Patsy had signed up for the Super Soldier program out of the Army but Patsy had not survived. When Jessica became the latest Captain America, her eyes were opened to what America had become and she had defected. She had quickly been replaced but the Resistance welcomed her with open arms.

“Relax, Jessica,” Bill Foster said. “If Otto says it’s safe, it’s safe.”

“I have put together the finest technology outside of the government for our use,” Otto said. “Besides my brilliance, I used the files of the deceased Anthony Stark and Justin Hammer, the assistance of the enigmatic Tinkerer, and even Norman Osborn.”

A soft red glow filled the room and then receded. “Of course, you had my help as well,” Wanda Maximoff said softly.

“I would never downplay the efforts of the Sorceress Supreme,” Otto said. “Wanda, you are as radiant as ever.”

“Cool it, will you?” Eric Masterson said. “It’s kind of creepy when you flirt.”

“Shall we not begin the meeting?” Wanda asked.

“We’re not all here,” Bill said. “We can’t have a full meeting without our whole team.”

“Monica, Shang-Chi, Luke, and Dane are on a mission,” Jessica said. She took off her mask and shook out her hair. “This will have to do. Thank you for coming.”

“Wouldn’t miss it,” Eric Masterson said with a smile. “I owe you guys.”

Jessica smiled and shook her head but then looked deadly serious. “I know that we’ve suffered losses recently. Bruce, Delroy, and Thor will be missed and they will be avenged and honored when our mission succeeds. Now, Bill, you asked for this meeting. Tell us what’s on your mind. The floor is yours.”

“My reasons are two-fold,” Bill said. “I wanted to formally welcome Eric to the team and do a quick status update. Eric, you now possess Mjolnir and the power of Thor.”

“For now,” Eric said as he hefted Mjolnir with ease. “I have to believe that Thor will be coming back for it. Gods don’t really die, do they?”

“Maybe not,” Jessica said, cutting off Otto who she sensed was going to launch into a lecture. “but for now we need you to step up and be one of our heavy hitters.”

“I’ll do my best,” Eric said with a solemn nod. “If it weren’t for Thor and your team, I would be dead and you have a noble cause. I’m in.”

“Great,” Bill said. “Of course, we have the real Captain America, Captain Marvel, Powerman, the Scarlet Witch, and a lot more to back you up. I can even go with the help of some Pym particles in a pinch.”

“We need you more because of your former partnership with Pym,” Jessica said. “You have insight into how he might think.”

“That’s not Hank,” Bill said gruffly. “but I take your meaning. I wish I had unplugged that faker before they installed him into the Vision.”

“We all do,” Jessica said. “We’ll get our chance. We’ll return to the land of the free and we’ll make them pay for the hurt they’ve caused.”

Kanata and Dax – A Star Wars/Star Trek Crossover Story

April 13, 2021

Alarms went off in the small ship. A lot of alarms. The ship had been on autopilot so Maz Kanata woke up and scrambled out of her bunk. She rubbed her eyes and pulled on a jacket.

“Rose!” Maz yelled out. “What is that alarm? I’ve never heard that one before.”

Maz acted nonchalant as usual but Rose Tico could tell that she was worried. Rose was beyond worried herself and stopped cursing under her breath long enough to talk. She gestured to Maz to follow and then led her to the cockpit where she abruptly took the ship out of hyperdrive. The alarm suddenly stopped blaring.

“The ship detected an imminent collision while we were in hyperspace,” Rose said. “Now that we’re out of hyperdrive, the collision won’t happen. This shouldn’t happen, though. The odds of intersecting with another ship’s path in hyperspace are pretty astronomical.”

“And yet, we seem to have beaten those odds,” Maz said. “Lucky us. I suppose we should see who the culprit is and see if they’re also alright.”

“Well, that’s them right there,” Rose said as she pointed through the cockpit window. “I’ve never seen a ship like that before. It’s very pretty. All the round edges remind me of the pictures I’ve seen of the Old Republic days.”

“I can assure you that this ship is not designed like anything I’ve ever seen,” Maz said. “and I’ve been on Old Republic era ships. It reminds me of the Falcon but sleeker.”

“I should have guessed,” Rose said. “You’ve been everywhere by now. Oh, I think I know why we almost crashed. There’s a space object a quarter of a light-year back that may have altered our course.” She was pressing buttons on the console as she talked. Multi-tasking was one of the skills that had led Maz to recruit Rose.

“A space object,” Maz said. “How descriptive.”

“I’m an engineer, not a scientist,” Rose said. “I’m scanning frequencies to see if we can have a chat with our new friends.”

After a few minutes, the subspace radio crackled to life.

“I repeat,” a woman’s voice said. “This is Jadzia Dax of the USS Defiant. Please respond. We encountered a space/time distortion while in warp and we are worried that your ship may have been damaged. Please respond.”

Rose pressed a button on the console and gestured to Maz. After all, Maz Kanata was the leader of this little partnership.

“This is Maz Kanata of the New Republic Defense Force,” Maz said. “Can you hear me?”

“I can hear you loud and clear, Ms. Kanata,” Jadzia said. “I’m not getting any visuals. It seems our systems are barely compatible. Would you like to come aboard so our medics can have a look at you?”

“I don’t think that’s necessary,” Maz said. “but we’re always open to meeting new friends and our rendezvous can wait a little longer, I suppose. We’ll come around and dock.”

“No need,” Jadzia said. “We can beam you aboard. It’ll be quicker.”

“Beam?” Rose asked. “What does that mean?”

A shimmering blue light surrounded Maz and Rose but, before either could react, they vanished from the cockpit of their ship and were in the strangest place either had been which said a lot. A young woman with long, braided hair and peculiar birthmarks along her hairline and down along her neck smiled at them.

“Sorry about that,” Jadzia said. “My name is Jadzia Dax and this is the Starfleet vessel Defiant. What New Republic did you say you represent?”

“What’s Starfleet?” Rose asked.

“Good question,” Maz said. “but to answer a question, we’re from the New Republic. The new government formed after the fall of the Empire. I would have thought the news was more well-known by now.”

“None of that really made sense to me,” Jadzia said. “and did you hit your head and forget what Starfleet is? Can my medics check you out?”

Maz and Rose nodded, looking just as confused as Jadzia. The medics stepped forward and started to wave strange devices close to Maz and Rose’s body without touching. The medic near Maz started to look even more confused.

“This species, it’s not in any of our medical databases,” the medic said. “However, it does somewhat match some ancient archaeological data.”

“Oh,” Jadzia said. “I think we have quite a mystery on our hands.”

The Jester Rises – A Harley Quinn Elseworlds Story

April 12, 2021

Harleen Quinzel was fuming as she walked through the streets. She had never been rejected so harshly and so abruptly. She had gotten through school with flying colors and gotten her license to practice but she was too young to start her own practice and nobody was hiring. She had been desperate so she applied and was then hired by Arkham Asylum to be a staff psychiatrist. It was pretty rough. Some patients were nice but a lot of them were creepy or violent and totally obsessed with Batman. The work was definitely interesting but not very rewarding. Most of the patients had no interest in their treatment.

One inmate had started to draw her attention. She heard so many rumors and whispers about him that she could not help but be curious. He was a frequent guest in Arkham and he was back yet again. When she was assigned to do a series of interviews with him, she had gotten nauseous with fear. She swallowed it all down, put on her best professional demeanor and then stepped in to try therapy with The Joker.

Much to her surprise, it was not as bad as she expected. She knew Joker was playing with her but he was charismatic and interesting and engaged in her questions even if he rarely gave a straight answer. She even caught herself laughing at some of his sick jokes. She started looking forward to their sessions and made excuses to visit him more often. She started thinking about him at home, on the way to work, on the way home to work, and then all the time.

She finally broke down and turned off the security cameras and confessed her love to Joker. She told him that she could help him escape and that they could be together on the outside. He told her no. He told her that he was not interested in a groupie and that there was no way that she would understand his genius. He ratted her out to the administration and Harley had been summarily fired and sent home. She had never been so angry. She had been a fool.

If Joker was not going to be her partner, then she would beat him at his own game. She tested out her own clown makeup and had sewn her own costume. She borrowed some engineering books from the library to create her own gadgets. Not returning those books would be her first crime. Joker had made her feel like a fool so that is what she would be. Gotham would learn to fear The Jester. That would really piss him off. She had to figure out how to get on the news as fast as possible.

She briefly considered tracking down Catwoman for a team-up. She thought that another woman might be sympathetic to her plight and Catwoman was a total pro. Still, she was too stealthy for the splash that Harleen wanted to make. She thought of Poison Ivy but she knew her file and knew that she was more of an ecoterrorist which had no overlap with the Jester’s goals. Maybe sometime in the future. She seemed really smart and cool.

She also considered knocking on Aaron Helzinger’s door. The big guy, also known as Amygdala, would be an absolute powerhouse to team up with. She had built a rapport with him while treating him in the Asylum. However, he was completely unstable and tended to go on rage-filled rampages so he was not very dependable. Also, she would feel pretty guilty about recruiting him. She had adjusted his medication and returned him to enough normalcy to be released to a halfway house to see if he could be released outright. There was no need to bother the big lug.

That left her on her own until she had enough street cred to bring on henchmen. She was pretty sure that was how it worked. She geared up, carefully applied her makeup, and grabbed her gear. She broke into a car and drove it toward Gotham’s First National Bank. She gunned the car to top speed and drove it up the stone steps and through the front façade of the building. She climbed out of the car and shot the first guard with her boxing glove gun. She slapped the other guard with a hand buzzer that knocked him out.

Somebody in the crowd yelled out. “Who are you!?”

Harleen gave her best smile, eyes wide, posing for pictures. “You can call me The Jester.”

Media Update 4/8/21

April 11, 2021

Godzilla vs. Kong

I really liked King Kong: Skull Island and I have a lot of nostalgia for the Godzilla movies whne I was a kid. I watched every single one that I could get a hold of. This is the continuation of a franchise so there is a lot going on. This movie covers the inevitable clash of King Kong and Godzilla and I’ve become a fan of these versions of the monsters. The movie largely follows two intersecting plotlines. The first plot line is helmed by Rebecca Hall, a linguist working with Kong who is great as an insightful advocate. She is joined by Alexander Skarsgård who is great as a scholarly good guy trying to do the right thing. Kaylee Hottle plays a great character, one of the best child actors I have seen in a while. The other plot follows Millie Bobbie Brown, an inquisitive young woman, and Brian Tyree Henry, a paranoid engineer. They are dealing with Demián Bichir and Shun Oguri who are great as villains. The movie went along at a great pace and the human story never stood in the way of the monster story. The special effects and monster design were both really good. I recommend this movie.

Godzilla: King of the Monsters

Since I liked Kong vs. Godzilla, I decided to check this one out as well. I had not watched it yet because I disliked Godzilla (2014) so much. This was a mistake. The movie has a huge ensemble cast but we mainly follow two characters. The first is Millie Bobbie Brown, who is great as a troubled but highly intelligent young woman. The second is Kyle Chandler who is great as a man trying to pull his life back together. We also get Vera Farmiga who plays a brilliant but misguided scientist. We get other great performances from Bradley Whitford, Sally Hawkins, Charles Dance, Thomas Middleditch, David Straitharn, Ken Watanabe, and Zhang Ziyi. Somehow, the human parts flow without being too much and they all work to serve the Godzilla plot. Nothing gets in the way of the Godzilla and the monster plot. Again, I really loved the monster design and the fight choreography. I recommend this movie.

Destroy All Monsters

It was intensely interesting to go back and watch this movie. While it is by far not a perfect film, you can see direct through lines to the above movies (and other movies throughout the years). In fact, the movie came up with a lot of interesting plot points even if they are somewhat clumsily crafted. I like a lot of the interesting takes on global politics that this movie deals with. I really loved that this became more of a thing into the Godzilla movies of the 70s, 80s, 90s, and onward. Shin Godzilla in particular did a really good job on that sort of commentary. The special effects are, of course, not super great but still fun. This is “guys in rubber suits” era of Godzilla so all of the monsters move a little weird. You get weird frames where Rodan is doing the Shimmy and Godzilla is shadow boxing. Later films would do better with giving the humans more stakes by putting them in the same shot as the monsters and have better models for the monsters to destroy. I won’t really talk about the acting because it was all melodramatic dubbed over English and I imagine the Japanese is much better but I do not know. Still, I recommend this movie as something fun to put on in the background.

Music of the Week:

ParkingLotGrass -Rain Man

Yat-Kha – Charash Karaa

Playboy Manbaby – I Wish My Brain Was A Computer

dodie – Guiltless

Mashup of the Week:

Allen Riley – Surfin’ With Butterfly Wings

Weekly Update:
This week’s theme is “Go Go Godzilla!”
I watched more Watcher videos
I watched a lot of Twitch and YouTube
i watched more Elementary Season 4
I watched more Teen Wolf Season 1
I started watching Q: Into the Storm
I watched more Allen v. Farrow

I also got vaccinated on Tuesday so that’s why this post is late!

Image Isn’t Everything – A Munsters/Addams Crossover Story

April 10, 2021

Marilyn stepped into the bar, a little frazzled because she was running behind. She had had so many errands to do for the family. Marilyn could never say no to Eddie, Lily, Herman, and Grandpa and she did not see a reason to stop now. Still, she felt a little guilty about being late. It would have to be alright because she could not change things now. She took a deep breath and approached the bartender. She put on her best smile.

“Excuse me,” she said. “I’m here to meet a friend. Is there anybody here who is waiting?” Her eyes twinkled with her smile and she could tell that it threw the bartender off of his game.

“Um,” the bartender said, taking a bit to reboot his brain. “No offense but it’s your friend. Don’t you know what your friend looks like?”

“We’ve never actually met,” Marilyn said. “We’ve only talked online.”

“Well,” The bartender said after a deep breath. “Is your friend male or female?”

“She’s female,” Marilyn said.

A shadow passed over the bartender’s face. “Oh,” he said. “There’s only one woman alone and it’s her.” He said the word like it was a slur and pointed past Marilyn to a darkened booth. There was a young woman dressed in black with pale skin and long black hair. She had a dark look about her that Marilyn found familiar given her family.

“Can I get you a drink?” the bartender asked. “It’s on the house.”

“Aren’t you sweet!” Marilyn said. “I’ll take a scotch and soda.”

The bartender quickly went about mixing her drink which was done in a flash and Marilyn took it and walked over to the table.

“Hello,” she said. “I’m Monster64 but you can call me Marilyn. My name’s Marilyn Munster”

The woman looked up at her without smiling. “My name’s Wednesday,” she said. “Please have a seat.” She gestured toward a seat. She had a glass of red wine in front of her.

Marilyn sat down with a smile. “I didn’t realize that was actually your name,” she said, “I thought it was just a screen name.” Marilyn was nervous because why else would that fall out of her mouth?

“My name is Wednesday Addams,” Wednesday said with the slightest Mona Lisa smile. “I’ve known it’s not a normal name for a long time.”

Marilyn nodded. “Sorry that I’m late,” she said. “I lost track of time back at the house. I hope I didn’t keep you.”

“My wife is out of town,” Wednesday said and sipped her wine. “I don’t have anywhere else to be.” Her sort of dry, monotone delivery made Wednesday hard to read but there was something in her eyes that was not friendly but it was also not unfriendly. Marilyn sensed that the woman did not make friends easily.

“Oh,” Marilyn said. “I didn’t know you have a wife.” She thought of something. “This isn’t one of those unicorn things, right? I’m not into girls.”

Wednesday gave Marilyn another Mona Lisa smile. “I’m very satisfied with my wife,” she said. “You said you wanted to be friends. You seemed like you had a lot in common with me.”

Marilyn breathed a sigh of relief. “Sorry, that was awkward,” she said and there was a bit of silence. “Wednesday is a great name,” Marilyn said. “My name is so ordinary.”

“I mean, yeah,” Wednesday said with brutal honesty. “It’s very ordinary. Not exactly what I expected.”

“Oh?” Marilyn asked. “and what did you expect?”

“Your emails talked about you living with monsters,” Wednesday said. “Real monsters. Not metaphorical ones. You look so normal.”

“I know!” Marilyn said. “That’s the problem. My family looks so good but I look so ugly.” She pulled out her phone and showed Wednesday a picture of her family. Wednesday saw a patchwork monster, a vampire, a hairy little boy with fangs, and a woman who could have been her mother’s sister. They looked even better than Wednesday would have guessed.

“You’re not ugly,” Wednesday said. “I mean, when I was little somebody who looked like you would have scared the hell out of me but I’ve seen a lot since then. My nanny looked kind of like you and she was a serial killer. My wife looked like you when we first met at summer camp.”

“So what are you saying?” Marilyn asked. Her head was spinning a little at the mention of serial killers.

“I’m saying that image isn’t everything,” Wednesday said. “If you’re a monster inside, that’s all that really counts. Your looks just make it so you fit in better out here. People fear me.”

“Oh I don’t find you very scary,” Marilyn said.

“I like when people fear me,” Wednesday said. “but I guess I can see how we could be friends.”

“Oh good,” Marilyn said. “I always need more friends.”

Ho Ho Hello Satan! – A Gingerdead Man/Letters to Satan Claus Story

April 9, 2021

Mary Findlemeyer slaved away in her kitchen once again. She was so tired of repeatedly performing this ritual but she would not give up on her son. This was the fourth time she had resurrected her son and she feared she would not have it in her to do it a fifth time. Her son, Millard Findlemeyer, had been a psychotic killer in life but he had been her psychotic killer. He had been gunned down by police while in the middle of a robbery at a bakery. Mary had used some of his ashes to bake him into a new body made of gingerbread. The resulting murder spree had gone well until her son had been killed again. Thus they had worked together to try to get Millard another human body so he could return to top form. That also had not gone well. Twice. It was time for a change.

Mary’s kitchen timer went off and she turned off the oven and opened it up. She grabbed the cookie sheet and pulled her son out of the oven. She watched as his eyes opened. He looked confused at first but the realization of his situation once again dawned in his eyes. He remained silent as Mary used a spatula to extricate him from the cookie sheet. Once he was on his feet, he started checking that he once again had all of his correct parts in place and stretched his doughy form a bit.

“Thanks, Ma,” the Gingerdead Man said. “Hot and fresh out of the oven! I’m ready to kill and kill again. Where are we?”

“I had to leave the country after summoning your soul back to the ashes after the time travel debacle,” Mary said disappointedly. “We’re in Canada.”

“Canada sucks!” Millard said. “Look, Ma, I’m sorry about the time travel thing. Time travel is confusing.”

“I don’t blame you, my dear,” Mary said with a smile. “It’s those that stand in your way that I blame. Also, it does not help that you’re only a few inches tall. That part is on me.”

“Oh, Ma, without your magic I’d be shit out of luck,” Millard said. “Though, I really would like to have a human body again. There’s so many things I miss like being able to strangle people.”

“Strangling people is pleasant,” Mary said. “We’ll get you back to strangling soon. However, we have to try a different tactic. You need help.”

“I work alone, Ma,” Millard said sullenly, his tiny eyes narrowing. “Admittedly because I piss people off and kill whoever I work with.” He gave a tiny shrug.

“Well, this time we’ll have to make an exception,” Mary said. “I’m summoning Satan.”

“Satan, huh?” Millard said with a little cookie grin. “That actually sounds kind of cool. The big guns. So do it already, summon him up.”

“What makes you think it’s a he?” Mary asked. “Besides, I already did it. I sent a letter. Satan should be here any minute.”

“Of course Satan’s a dude,” Millard said. “He’s gotta be a man.”

There was a sudden flash of heat and fire and a demonic-looking thing was standing there. It was wearing a red and white robe with a Santa hat. Satan looked rather androgynous but there was something that vaguely tipped the scales toward feminine that Millard could not put his doughy finger on.

“Actually,” Satan said in a woman’s voice. “I can be whatever I want and this form pleases me lately. It freaks out a lot of the Men’s Rights guys. Hilarious. So your letter proposed a deal?”

“What’s with the Christmas get-up?” Millard asked, interrupting the flow of conversation.

Satan sighed and put hands on her hips. “It’s Christmastime again and I’m in a festively murderous mood,” she said.

“Amen to that!” Millard yelled out. “This is a chick that I can really get behind!”

“That’s why we summoned you here, oh great Satan,” Mary said. “We wanted to pledge ourselves to your service in order to get my son a human body again.”

Satan thought about this. “Hmm that is interesting,” Satan said. “I am still stewing over something that happened last Christmas that I want revenge for. I’ll offer you a deal. Come with me back to the town of Ornaments. It’s not far from here. I have to abide by certain rules but you are decidedly rule-free. Kill everyone dear to Holly Frost and then finish by killing her and I will install you in a human body. There are plenty of hunks in Ornaments to choose from.”

“That sounds like fun,” Millard said. “You’ve got yourself a deal.” He rubbed his little hands together.

“Shall we?” Satan asked, extending a hand to the little cookie man.

“Yeah,” Millard said. “Let’s do it. Don’t wait up, Ma!” He grabbed her hand and they were gone in a flash.

The Green Tunic Squad – A Legend of Zelda Game Idea

April 8, 2021

The idea of this game is obviously inspired by the 3D Legend of Zelda games. It would be a spinoff game because it would not star Link or Zelda. It would be set after yet another victory by the Hero of Time, Link. It would follow a group of young people who are inspired by Link who are sucked into their own heroic quest.

The mechanics would be a little different since you would be playing as three characters instead of one. You would be able to switch between characters at will and each would have their own specialty. In dungeons, you could split the team up to accomplish goals and to complete puzzles.

The Heroes:

Arim – A stocky boy who is the team’s main fighter. He is the one strong enough to carry a sword and shield like their hero. He also is responsible for wielding any items that have to do with strength like the hammer, the titan’s mitt, and the shovel. At some point, Arim would start to get skills based on Gorons like a shield bash and a rolling attack. He is a farmer from the plains of Hyrule.

Icia – A scholarly tall girl who is team’s magic expert. She wields a magical staff that starts with a glittery firework attack but she later would get the fire rod, the ice rod, the lens of truth, and the pegasus boots. She would be the one to obtain the Zora flippers which would give her Zora powers like swimming and sliding. She is the daughter of the Kariko Village librarian and a major bookworm.

Mozi – A tiny young girl who is the team’s specialist at long range. She starts with the bow and arrow and is good at striking from stealth. Later on she would also get gadgets like the boomerang, the hookshot, and bombs. She would eventually start to get skills based off of the Deku like a ghillie suit and a gliding cape. She is an orphan who lives among the Deku in the forest.

The three would start separately but would be drawn together to quest to stop the ressurection of Ganon. Hyrule has just been through so miuch and the Hero of Time is nowhere to be found (again!). Nobody will listen to them so they have to do it themselves. The three of them bond as a team and grow closer and stronger together.

I am drawing on games like the Dark Cloud franchise, Genshin Impact, and The Lost Vikings.

For Queen and Country – A 007 Story

April 7, 2021

Bailey Corbin entered the hotel room and tried to turn on the light switch but nothing happened. She guessed that the light bulbs had been taken out, a guess that was proven right when she passed by a small collection of bulbs. There was also a half-empty bottle of gin which was not a good sign especially coupled with an empty bottle lying down next to it like a fallen soldier. She looked around and thankfully there was only one person in the bed and it was the person she suspected would be there. She made her way in that direction, carefully avoiding clothes lying on the ground.

She thought about reaching out to wake the man but thought better of it and kicked the bed instead. When nothing happened, she kicked the bed harder. The man roused and was immediately aiming a gun at Bailey. She slowly put her hands up but did not look happy about it. The man had bloodshot eyes but he still looked steady as a rock.

“Who the hell are you?” James Bond asked as he stared at Bailey. “Better be quick, I know I didn’t invite a girl back here.”

“I’m not a girl, 007,” Bailey said. “I’m 23. Are you going to put on a shirt?”

“It depends,” Bond said. “You still haven’t said who you are although I have an inkling since you know my call sign.”

“I’m 008,” Bailey said. “Corbin. Bailey Corbin. The home office sent me here for you.”

“How did the home office find me?” Bond asked. “I thought I covered my tracks pretty well.”

Bailey smirked. “You have Q to thank for that,” she said. “tiny tracking chip, I’m told. Several of them, actually. Seems you have a history of slipping away.”

Bond climbed out of the bed and set his gun on the bedside table. Instead of putting a shirt on right away, he headed for the gin bottle and poured himself a glass. He looked back over his shoulder to see Bailey’s reaction.

“I ran out of vodka and lillet so I can’t offer you a martini but I can offer you some gin,” Bond said. “Fancy a drink?” He gave her an attempt at a sexy smile and it was pretty good but all wrong.

“That’s really sad, 007,” Bailey said. “and no I’m not having a drink right now. I’m on the job.”

“That never stopped me,” Bond said.

“That explains a lot,” Bailey said. “Aren’t you even going to ask why I’m here?”

Bond shrugged. “I’m sure you’re here to bring me back home,” Bond said. “or at least you’ll try.”

“I’m interested that you call it home,” Bailey said. “You haven’t remained in country for more than a few days for years. I’m not even sure you still maintain a residence in England after your homestead was destroyed.”

Bond turned to face her and narrowed his eyes. “I’ll thank you to not to mention such things,” he said. “What residence I do or don’t keep is none of your business and none of M’s business.”

Bailey nodded. “You’re right,” she said. “I apologize. That was going too far. I’m not here to bring you back, though. I’m here because of Marakesh.”

Bond did bend down to pick up a shirt at this point and slipped it on. “Marakesh was fine,” he said. “The job got done.”

“It was a mess,” Bailey said. “At least, that’s what they told me. They don’t want that to happen to you. You’re getting on in years and they sent me to work with you.”

Bond shot her a look, grabbing his glass of gin again. “I work alone,” he said bitterly. “I’ve always worked alone.”

“And that wasn’t a problem until recently,” Bailey said. “Look, I don’t want to be here. I don’t want to be hitched to an old man near the end of his career even if you are a legend.”

“I’m not an old man,” Bond said. “I’m only…. oh Hell.” He rubbed his eyes.

“You’re seventy,” Bailey said. “Most agents have retired by then. You’ve had three Ms. If you’re going to stay on, apparently you get me.”

“I don’t want a babysitter,” Bond said.

“I’m not a babysitter,” Bailey said. “I’m your partner. Deal with. We have work to do.”

The Electrocutioner Strikes – A Batwoman Story

April 6, 2021

(I decided to posit what might happen if Ruby Rose got a second season on CW’s Batwoman)

“I am the Electrocutioner!” the woman yelled in the middle of Gotham’s main street at the top of her lungs. “Gotham will fry for what they’ve done to me!” She was wearing a black hood over her head but blond hair spilled from a hole in the back of it. She had some kind of heavy-duty gauntlets on and she was threatening everyone who came remotely close. She had a sack at her feet which was presumably filled with cash from the bank a few yards from her.

“Check this one out, Luke,” Kate said, perched far above in her Batwoman suit. “She’s absolutely crazy and kind of pathetic.”

“Careful, Kate,” Luke said over their communicator. “I’m reading a lot of energy coming from somewhere on her.”

Kate studied this so-called Electrocutioner before tapping the side of her cowl and activating lenses in her mask that allowed her to see closer. “It’s probably those gauntlets, Luke,” Kate said. “I mean, it seems pretty obvious.”

“Keep an eye on her for a moment,” Luke said. “The Batcave’s computers are analyzing her gear.”

“I’m not going anywhere,” Kate said. “But I shouldn’t have to remind you that there’s a dangerous lunatic with potentially killer tech down there.”

“Oh,” Luke said without elaborating.

“What does ‘oh’ mean, Luke?!” Kate said forcefully into the commlink.

“The scan triggered something in the computers,” Luke said. “Her tech is definitely a match for the other Electrocutioners that Bruce fought.”

“Plural?” Kate asked. “How many?”

“Three of them,” Luke said. “They all shared the last name of Buchinsky.”

“Look to see if they had any younger blonde relatives maybe?” Kate asked. “Oh hell.”

“What’s wrong?” Luke asked.

“Sophie’s here,” Kate said. “Playing the hero again.”

“I’ll remind you that you ‘play the hero’ all the time and also that you’re both heroes,” Luke said. “I mean, in each in your own way.”

“I get it,” Kate said. “but she’s not equipped like Batwoman is.”

“I’ve got a hit,” Luke said. “Avery Buchinsky. She has the right build for Avery Buchinsky.”

Down below, The Electrocutioner’s gauntlets sparked and a bolt of electricity shot out and hit a trash can, setting the trash inside on fire. Sophie started to get people to back up, pulling her gun out.

“That’s my cue,” Kate said and she jumped from her ledge.

She activated her gliders closer to the ground and she drifted down to land on the top of a streetlight. She activated a microphone in her mask. She tapped into nearby public address speakers.

“Avery Buchinsky!” Batwoman yelled out and her voice filled the street with the aid of technology. “Make it easy on yourself. Surrender yourself to the authorities.”

“That’s not my name!” Electrocutioner yelled. “He said you’d show up and now you’re cooked!” She gestured with a gauntlet and a bolt of lightning hit the street light, overloading it and sending broken glass and sparks everywhere. Batwoman barely managed to swinging away using her grappling hook. She swung down to the street.

“You don’t have to go down the same road as your family, Avery,” Batwoman said. “I’m telling you from experience that you don’t have to let family tell you who you are.” She thought briefly about Alice, her father, and even Bruce. She was doing her own thing and she was helping people no matter what they might say.

Electrocutioner shook her head. She flexed her hands out to the side and arcs of electricity surrounded her. “I can’t stop,” Avery Buchinsky yelled out, her eyes wild under her mask. “I won’t stop! He won’t let me!”

“Then I have to stop you,” Batwoman said. “Don’t make me do this, Avery!”

“You can try!” Avery yelled out and prepared to unleash everything she had at Batwoman.

Batwoman sighed and dodged Avery’s full force attack and then threw a bolo. When the lines connected the two gauntlets, there was a blinding flash as they short circuited which sent Avery flying back through the bank’s plate glass window. Batwoman rushed to her and held two fingers against Avery’s pulse. She was still alive.

“Get an ambulance!” Batwoman yelled out toward Sophie who was already on her phone.

“Please,” Avery said weakly.

“Who was making you do this, Avery?” Batwoman asked. “Who?”

“He’ll hurt my family,” Avery said. “I can’t.”

“I’ll protect them,” Kate said. “I promise.”

“It was Zeus,” Avery managed to say before passing out.

The Doctor in the Sky – A Doctor Who Story

April 5, 2021

Shane followed close behind The Doctor, both of them moving as quietly as they could. He did not recognize the strange alien architecture around them but that was becoming all too familiar traveling with the Doctor. The Doctor was a strange woman but she was fascinating and exciting even though Shane knew that she was dangerous. The red-haired stranger had shown up in the midst of what turned out to be a time distortion. Shane had been with her since.

“Doctor,” Shane said. “Where are we? Also, when are we?”

The Doctor turned smiling with a mixture of pride and amusement. “Well done, Shane,” she said. “You’re learning. Please do keep your voice down as this ship is full of creatures who can be quiet hostiles and in this period of history, they are far too interested in human beings.”

“Ship?” Shane asked, being careful to keep his voice down. “We’re on a ship?”

“Yes,” the Doctor said patiently. “We’re on a Diluvian ship in the year 1978, somewhere over Snowflake, Arizona.”

“Why are we here?” Shane asked. “I mean if it’s so dangerous.” He was getting used to things being dangerous when The Doctor was around but there was always a purpose. Somebody or something was usually threatening the events of history. Sometimes it was just outright killing that attracted The Doctor’s compassion. The Doctor always set things right or at least tried to the best of her ability. It was part of why Shane had decided to stick around. He also wanted to help people.

“I realized that I had to close a bit of a time loop I started,” The Doctor said. “Also, I suppose you could call this a rescue mission if you will.”

“A rescue mission?” Shane asked. “Who would be up here in an alien craft in the late seventies? I thought most people who said they got abducted by aliens were crackpots.”

“Well, you’re mostly right,” The Doctor said. “A lot of abduction stories come from people under the influence of some drug, hallucinations otherwise caused by physical injury or sickness, or a particularly lucid dream. Yet more of them are just making up stories for attention. There are a small percentage who are telling the truth. Most abductions don’t end well.”

“Aliens are really going around killing people?” Shane asked. “Why?”

“Loads of reasons,” The Doctor said. “For food, for profit, for sport, and so on. There are too many reasons and all of them are selfish and wrong.”

“No arguments here,” Shane said. “Lucky I ran into the nice alien.”

The Doctor smiled and patted Shane’s shoulder. “Thanks, Shane,” she said. “but there are plenty of nice aliens out there. Most of them have never even heard of Earth, though. Just your planet’s bad luck, I think.”

“So we’re here to rescue some unlucky bloke?” Shane asked.

“Yes,” The Doctor said as they resumed creeping through the ship. “I don’t suppose we’ll get any credit for it but that’s probably for the best. The fewer humans who know about me, the better.”

“I still think you’d be a bloody hero for all you’ve done,” Shane said.

“I never set out to be a hero,” The Doctor said. “I just can’t stand by and not help.”

Shane smiled. “That’s a hero in my book,” he said. “Wait, are the Men in Black real?”

“Pretty sure they are,” The Doctor said. “I was one once.”

Shane nearly yelled in response but managed to keep himself under control. “Did you wipe anybody’s memory?”

“They only do that in the movies,” The Doctor said. “Those devices do exist but UNIT and their contemporaries wouldn’t be so cruel.”

“I have a lot to learn,” Shane said.

They entered into a chamber with a man lying on a table. The Doctor and Shane rushed to his side and The Doctor moved to use her sonic screwdriver to release the man’s restraints as Shane shook him awake.

“What’s going on?” the man weakly asked.

“We’re here to help,” Shane said. “Can you tell us your name?”

“Travis,” the man said groggily. “Travis Walton.”

“Let’s get you out of here, Travis,” The Doctor said and they helped him to his feet.

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