Legion of Justice - Chapter 10: Invasion - Utopia
- The 4 Legionnaires observed the valiant Aurora's desperate last battle
from aboard the Hot Rod, a nanosecond in the future.
"C'mon, Tommy, let's get a move on!" Rex was sweating. "I can't hide
this boat for long " Holding the 30' pinnace uptime was pushing his
power to his limits.
But Tommy was already diving the Hot Rod Earthwards at maximum safe
velocity (or maybe a little bit faster). The ceramic hull of the boat
was heating up as they entered Earth's atmosphere at meteoric speed.
Chemique was directing him towards the Atlantic Ocean.
'Weather monitors show a nasty storm about a hundred miles off the
coast of New Jersey. I wish it were a little closer to Gunderson"
formerly the District of Columbia "but it will do."
"It will HAVE to do" Rex managed to get out.
"Hold on, Rex!" Tommy tried to assure his teammate. "5 Minutes, max!"
Even Rand, who was perhaps the best pilot in the Legion (though, Hawk
Lad would have argued about that) was impressed with Tommy's skill as
he brought the Hot Rod down through the atmosphere into the storm.
From orbit to hovering in a violent thunderstorm in under 5 minutes
was no mean feat - even with extra-solar technology. The inertial
dampeners were the only thing that made it possible - the little ship
must have pulled 50 Gs a couple of times during the dive and
subsequent pull-up. Suddenly, the Hot Rod was hovering motionless in
a steamy fog in the center of a raging thunderstorm, rain flashing to
vapor as it struck the ship's now ultraheated ceramic hull.
Motionless? A relative term. Compared to orbital velocity, compared
to the mad dash from orbit to their current station, the Hot Rod was
now dead still. But even extra-solar technology couldn't totally
ignore or compensate for the raging winds inside this fierce storm.
Despite the best efforts of the autopilot, ably aided by the human
pilot, the Hot Rod swayed and pitched, yawed and rolled like a balloon
tethered in front of a ventilation fan. They couldn't plunge into the
ocean until the hull had cooled off.
Tommy was far too busy trying to smooth out the hover to notice the
effect of this pitching and rolling on his teammates, who were
struggling against motion sickness. Rex, who had dropped them back to
real time the instant they entered the storm, was floating his chair
independently of the Hot Rod, which worked OK for the smaller bounces
and jolts, but when the pinnace instantly jumped a good distance in a
random direction, which it did often, the protective force field
around his chair would jar off of the bulkheads. The little movements
didn't affect him, while the big ones were worse for him than his
Miqui was able to slow down her metabolism to the point where she was
barely affected by the ship's rapid movements, though by doing this,
she also drastically slowed down her mental processes. She hoped she
wouldn't have to make any snap judgments in the near future; any
emergency situation would be long resolved by the time she had made up
her mind about a course of action!
The Legionnaire having the hardest time with his stomach was Rand -
who would have been fine if he had been doing the piloting. As it
was, he was concentrating desperately on his reputation as the
Legion's tough guy who could handle anything. They'd change his code
name to 'Flash' if he couldn't handle this, he just knew it. And
they'd make sure every girl he ever met for the next 20 years would
hear this story, over and over again!
The volume of rain cascading around the hovering spaceship quickly
lowered the hull temperature to under boiling, and Rand was still
(barely) in control of his stomach when Tommy finally splashed them
down into the ocean. 15 feet under, the violent motions began to
abate, and his teammates started returning to normal. Tommy had been
concentrating so fiercely he hadn't noticed any discomfort. He
quickly took them down to 200 feet and got them moving slowly towards
shore, then put the Hot Rod on autopilot and started checking his
Rex was giving his brother a hard time. "Geez, you need a new costume
designer. The blue and yellow uniform doesn't go well at all with the
Rand didn't even feel well enough to respond. Instead, he turned his
attention to the Hot Rod's instrument panel and started shutting down
the systems that weren't useful in this environment - and turning on
the few that would be helpful now, such as the sonar. Designed to
penetrate the very thick atmospheres of gas giants, it should serve
them just as well in the oceans of Earth. And concentration on these
tasks helped him forget his queasy stomach.
After a few anxious minutes, Tommy made the announcement everyone was
waiting for. "Well, I wouldn't want to do this every day - the Hot
Rod is a spaceship, not a submarine. But the hull is handling the
pressure just fine, the inertial engines work well enough, and life
support will hold up for as long as we plan to be submerged."
"And the sonar picture is almost as good as being able to see" Rand
"I sure wouldn't want to be outside in this sludge!" Chemique's voice
radiated emphatic disgust. She was sensing the chemical composition
of the fluid outside. "It's like we're in a sewer!"
"I've heard that the water is cleaner closer to the surface" Rex
offered. "We're deep enough to be cruising through the accumulated
waste products of our civilization, dumped into the ocean for 500
"OK, time to get to work. Rand?" Mique changed the subject.
Hour Boy smiled. "You won't even know I was gone, see?" His position
shifted slightly, the only indication that he had just spent an hour
in the past as a phantom, spying on government installations.
"I checked out several Amgov radar installations along the Jersey
coast, as well as the observation station at the military spaceport on
Fire Island - and nobody noticed us."
There was a chance that Amgov maintained some secret space observation
facilities along the coast, but Rand didn't know those secret
locations, so he had checked as many known facilities as he could
reach in an hour in his phantom form. It was the best they could do.
"OK, since we seem to be undetected, we'll go with Plan A." Chemique
A few hours cruising and they entered Delaware Bay, where they had to
be more careful. Their stealth systems would hide them from the sonar
of any surface vessels, and this was a busy shipping port. It
wouldn't do for a cargo ship to hit an invisible, sonar-proof
obstruction. Chemique quickly moved them to Plan A Prime. They
dropped to the bottom and waited a couple of hours for dark. As they
passed the time, Miqui and Tommy proved to be an unbeatable team at
euchre, and Rex had a flair for bridge, regardless of who he paired
with. Soon enough, it was time to continue the mission.
Rex concentrated and moved the Hot Rod uptime. Tommy flipped a switch
and the autopilot took over, raising them from Delaware Bay, flashing
across the Upper Chesapeake Peninsula, then down again into Crab Alley
Bay near Kent Island, much faster than Tommy could have done it. Rex
hardly had time to complain, when the signal came that it was safe for
him to return them to normal time. The water here was much cleaner -
though still not clean enough to swim in. Fortunately they didn't
One again, Rand dove back into the past, this time scouting the nearby
island as a phantom, and almost immediately found what they needed.
An abandoned estate with a large boathouse. Shortly thereafter the
Hot Rod was safely hidden inside the boathouse. The estate had once
been home to a rich family, but after centuries of Amgov, there was no
longer a wealthy class. The immense taxes the producer class had to
pay had soon driven this family into one of the slums with all the
other producers. Some entitled had lived her for a while, but
entitled didn't work - even to do maintenance - and the place had
fallen into such disrepair that even the entitled wouldn't live here
any longer. Even to the politically and socially naïve Legionnaires,
the fallen estate pointed out the irony of their mission - they were
trying to save this timeline, meaning, save Amgov.
"What they would bring about is even worse than Amgov" Miqui was
constantly reassuring her teammates. Tommy, who had been pretty much
enslaved into the Legion Academy when his powers manifested, and Rex,
whose body had been destroyed on Amgov orders, found this to be a very
thin rationalization. Canary had prepared her for this eventuality,
however. Miqui showed her teammates a video Canary had recorded
before they left - just in case.
"Once we've stopped Savage and Mekanique" Canary promised "the Legion
of Justice will begin working with the underground in the Utopian
States of America to topple Amgov. We'll finally live up to our name.
So, pick up as many Amgov secrets as you safely can without
compromising your main mission."
As Canary had know it would be, this was just the impetus the Stealth
Squad needed to regain their enthusiasm. Time to get started on their
- Yeah, it did get a little long, didn't it? thanks for the nice words.
Happy New Year!
--- In theJSAallstarstorysite@yahoogroups.com, Drivtaan <drivtaan@...>
>history. You've done a great job filling us in on the goings-on of the
> Congratulations on completing one of the longest chapters in
E-2 version of the Legion. Keep the stories coming.
> Looking for last minute shopping deals? Find them fast with Yahoo!
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]