Re: The Legion of Doom: Showdown, Part 7
- Good, SH, I was wondering how the bad guys were going to guarantee that they got the matchup they wanted.
I wonder if the JLA might try some shape-changing or illusion tricks? J'onn J'onzz might pass for Hawkman, say - and Starman has the power to change his looks as well. I remember he once fooled Lex Luthor into thinking he as Superman.
--- In Earth1AftertheCrisis@yahoogroups.com, starsky_hutch76 <no_reply@...> wrote:
> Clark Kent found himself in a rare situation. Aunt Gerta was teaching a senior fitness class at the rec center and Kristin had taken Jasma to a Daisy Scout meeting. This meant for once he had the house to himself. It would be a couple of hours before he went on his usual patrol, so he could get in some valuable writing time on the new idea he had for a novel.
> He sat down to his typewriter and placed a stack of paper beside it in preparation. As soon as he brought his hands up to the keys, he heard a voice in his ear at a frequency only audible to him.
> "Superman," the darkly familiar voice said, "if you are hearing this and I'm sure you are then you are to follow these instructions to the letter. We have your friends, Jimmy Olsen and Lois Lane. If you want to see them alive again, then you will meet us atop the Daily Planet building. You will bring the following Justice League members with you: Hawkman, Hawkwoman, and Starman. No more. No less. These instructions will be followed exactly, because know this: My hands are on their necks even as I speak."
> A cold chill ran down his spine. He hadn't expected Super-menace to stay trapped forever, but he had hoped he had seen the last of him for at least a little while. But he was back, he wanted a rematch, and his friends were caught in the crossfire.
- Hello all,I've had to make a correction to this chapter. Batman Special #1, which takes place in June 26, 1983, makes it expressly clear that Thomas and Martha Wayne were killed exactly 25 years earlier in 1958, not 1959, as I had originally established in the timeline. Thusly, the Wrath has been "dead" for the last five years, not the last four years as stated in this story.This works out really well, since the current story's year of 1988 is the actual 30th anniversary of the deaths of both Thomas and Martha Wayne, and the parents of William Mallory, the boy who became the Wrath. I may add a few lines to make the most of this anniversary in the final version as well.Also, Bruce Wayne was established as being 8 years old at the time of his parents' deaths, which makes him born in 1950 -- the same year that Clark Kent was born. In fact, they're only a few days apart, since both were born in February, with Bruce a few days older. I like this a lot better than having Bruce be a year younger, since a couple of Superboy stories have already established that Bruce and Clark are in the same grade at school. It makes sense that they'd be the same age as well.Anyway, I'll correct this by the time I archive it on www.5earths.info.--
Doc Quantum of The Time Trust
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From: Doc Quantum <the_time_trust_2000@...>
Sent: Friday, November 23, 2012 12:04 AM
Subject: [Earth-1 After the Crisis] The Legion of Doom: Showdown, Part 2
It was now June 26th, the anniversary of his parents' deaths, and the Wrath was deeply unhappy. Over the past few days, the self-appointed leader of the Legion of Doom had been plotting and planning, just as Neron had wanted him to. But while he had given everyone the impression that he had a master plan at work to destroy the Justice League, the truth was that he had merely been stalling for time.
He had a brilliant mind, one that had served him well as a professional assassin for many years, but that mind had been consumed by hatred and thoughts of revenge upon the man who had killed his parents: James W. Gordon, the police commissioner of Gotham City. The man, whose true name was long ago blotted out from all documented records, cared not a whit whether the Legion of Doom succeeded in killing the Justice League or not. All the Wrath cared about was avenging his parents by killing Gordon, and avenging his own life by killing the Batman. Everything else was secondary in his mind.
Neron hadn't, however, given him a choice in the matter when he'd brought him back to life. Yes, he could kill the Batman as long as that death was part and parcel with the deaths of the rest of the JLA. But he was forbidden from pursuing Gordon's life until after the Legion had succeeded in achieving its sole purpose for existence.
But it was the anniversary. It was most fitting that Gordon meets his maker on this of all days, just as he had planned when he'd first become the Wrath. How could he possibly pass up such an opportunity now that another June 26th had arrived? Still, Neron had convinced him at the time that he could wait until 1989. After all, next year was the 30th anniversary of his parents' murder at the hands of Gordon. That would be the most fitting time of all.
The Wrath could not wait another year. Gordon needed to die now. That was why he had hidden himself on that Gotham City rooftop overlooking Gotham City Police Headquarters after sending his Legionnaires out on their kidnapping missions. He knew it wasn't a smart move -- the Batman would be expecting him to target Gordon on this day of days -- but the Wrath couldn't risk losing his chance a second time.
"Aaargh!" he cried out as a sudden pain blasted through his skull like an arc of electricity. With trembling hands he reached into his cloak and pulled out a black candle, then quickly lit it. He vanished immediately.
Not far away, the Batman lowered his binoculars. "Bingo," he said to the woman next to him.
"You were right," said Zatanna. "He did show up."
"And now we've got him -- we've got them all," replied Batman triumphantly. "Let's join the others at the Sanctuary."
Super-Menace was the last to arrive at Neron's unholy sanctum, the Wrath and the Dark Commander having arrived moments earlier. It had taken a bit more prodding for Super-Menace to be pulled back from his mission in Metropolis.
"Why have you interrupted me?" he demanded. "I was about to kill Superman!"
"Silence, Clyde Derek," said Neron dismissively.
"Never call me by that name!" shouted the raging Super-Menace. "I will not be known by the name those -- those humans gave me!"
"I said silence."
At that moment, Super-Menace found his mouth sealed tightly shut. He tried to fly forward, but he found himself unable to move. After struggling for a few moments, the Menace of Steel began to relax.
"Clyde, you were so much more interesting before you developed into this raging man-child you are now," Neron said, stepping forward to slowly circle Super-Menace as he inspected him. "Didn't Wolf and Bonnie Derek raise their son to be better than that? You are not the Anti-Superman that I had so desired. I know you possess all the intelligence and skills of your foe, but your ever-present anger thwarts every action you attempt. You are indeed a formidable tool of destruction, but that is not all you are. You are capable of so much more, if you can only keep a cool head about you at all times, just as your opponent does."
Neron stopped and stared into Super-Menace's eyes. "And you will be more. Do you understand?"
Super-Menace glowered for a few more moments, then slowly lowered his eyes and nodded his head.
"That's good. That's good..." He nodded, and all restraints were released from Super-Menace, who slumped his shoulders as if all anger had also been released at that moment. He stepped back and nodded, somewhat contritely.
Neron walked toward the Dark Commander, whose looks were identical as that of Princess Diana, the original Wonder Woman, except that there were no traces of love to be found there.
"And you -- Penthesilea," said Neron. "My dear Penny. When I found you, you had lost your own father, the god of war. He was everything to you, but after the shameful way you died, he turned his back on you. That was when I stepped in and became a second father to you."
The Dark Commander merely nodded.
"But you've disappointed me as well," sighed Neron. "Perhaps my Legion of Doom is a bit of a boy's club, but since when has that ever stopped you from being the leader you were born to be? Instead, you are merely one of the group... one of the rabble."
The Dark Commander kept a steely gaze on Neron, who stared her down.
"You're one of my unholy trinity!" he shouted loudly. "You and the other two -- your brothers, if you will -- are second to no one! Why have you allowed others such as the Marshal and even Savitar and the Blue Bowman to effectively take your place as a leader? Should I consider you a mere woman unable to handle this responsibility?"
"No," said the Dark Commander.
"What was that? Did I hear a mouse squeak? Is Mouse Man hiding in your clothes somewhere, perhaps?"
"NO!" shouted the Dark Commander with the cry of a true warrior.
"Then step up," said Neron, "or I will promote someone else to take your place in my unholy trinity, and I will send your soul back, and you will never have the warrior's death that your heart craves."
The Dark Commander nodded and stepped back in a battle-ready stance.
Neron smiled and stepped toward the Wrath. "And you. I know your true name as well, William Mallory." The Wrath visibly stiffened as his name was spoken aloud for the first time in decades. "Oh, don't worry -- this conversation is between you and I alone. Your fellows only hear what I choose for them to hear. You still retain your secret, William, and that of your young Elliot Caldwell. Is he grateful that he survived his training, William? Is he even aware that he was the last of five orphans you kidnapped and put through your particular training regimen -- the only one that lived through it?"
"Rage is a good soldier," replied the Wrath.
"That he may be, but the past few years of easy living at boarding schools during your absence have also made him weak," responded Neron. "But I'm sure you have plans to update his training as soon as possible. Only, I wonder if he's aware of the tortures he'll face during his own private boot camp?" He laughed at the image.
"But I'm getting away from the reason I brought you here," said Neron, his tone darkening. "A week ago I assembled my Legion of Doom with grand plans to destroy the Justice League. But as I've checked in on you, all I've seen is setback after setback, delay after delay. Why is the Justice League still among the living?"
"We have a plan, but--"
"Oh, I'm becoming aware of your plan, William," said Neron. "I know why you were on a rooftop in Gotham City watching Gordon instead of taking the lives of your enemies. Need I remind you of our agreement?"
"No," said the Wrath. "I remember."
"Then delay no further," said Neron. "Whatever plans you had in mind are off the table. You will summon the sorceress at once and go through with my plan -- showdown."
The Wrath restrained himself from making an angry retort, then said, "Pardon me for saying so, sir, but this plan won't work. We need preparation time. I may be a professional, but our team is still just a bunch of rookies -- present company excepted, of course. We can't just head into a battle with an experienced team like the Justice League without doing the necessary legwork first."
Neron raised one arm and said merely one word to silence him. "Showdown."
A moment later, the unholy trinity was gone.