[05-08] Crash Redux

Aku

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Deep down, a storm of emotions stirs inside the heavy weapons expert after the rapid events that happened to everyone, including him. Wishing he could travel back thirty minutes before and make Della stay put at the crash site for her safety, but he knew that his comrade would rebel since that's how her personality works. The memories flood his head as his mind remains in a daydreaming state of remembering the first time he met her in the dark yet cozy mess hall where they did their little sandwich eating contest and how they teamed up on finding others that also became comrades. He shook his head, getting a grip on his emotional state, and move on for survival with the rest in his group. Before they lined up in a single file to get past, they close touching brush that made this alien wilderness.

Misha comes across where that thing bled onto the soil that became burnt.

The merc in red kneels to take a closer inspection on the bizarre sight blood spot. Sasha's humongous ammunition barrel rests against the ground as Misha rests his arm on top of the giant weapon. No color pooled across the dirt, which was strange for a creature to bleed that way. After focusing on the single spot in the soil, his eyes look up to see a trail of burnt dotted areas in the dirt where the alien creature fled. Comrade Perry walks over to where Misha knelt and became curious about why he stopped before they journeyed more profoundly into the forest. The Syntech agent eyes at the sight that Misha is examining and had the same thoughts as him.

"What else seems to be the problem?" Michael Liberty, the Coruscantian reporter, saunters over where the heavy weapons expert stopped remaining cautious with the surroundings in case that creature returns. "It seems that thing didn't outsmart bullet," Misha replies in his heavy Russian accent, rubbing his finger in the dirt where the acid blood dropped.

"So, what you're telling us that you managed to hit it?" the war reporter replies, taking in the sight of the trail that the alien left to hunt it. "Da, if it bleeds, we can kill it." the Russian brawn mercenary stands up once more, lifting the gun off the ground with one hand wrapping around the carry handle. His comrade platypus nods in agreement with what his gigantic friend remarked. If anything can bleed, it can die. The heavy weapons expert turns his head to look over his shoulder at the ones left in this once ragtag team.

"I am ready to move. Who's ready?" Misha responds to the others about making more progress to venture out. Everyone agreed it was time to move on, and so they left the part of the forest that was now the unmarked grave of Della where her remains leftovers lay. As they hiked through the thick brush on the trail that the alien left, a fiery murdering passion burns deeply inside the heavy weapons guy if he finds that horrific thing and plans to put it down along with the mad mouse. His boots stomped through on the trail in a rapid manner, leading up at the front with his team tailing him. Crows cawed overhead and soared in the skies above them.

The birds could be a bad omen to set out in this uncharted geographical land, but turning back would turn them into babies coming back empty-handed and one casualty to go with the rest that Syntech has suffered recently. About fifteen minutes out, they come across a village abandoned way before they crashed on this planet. It seemed ancient where it settled, and most of the buildings still stood after the harsh test of time. They were a little surprised to find a settlement on this uncharted planet. By witnessing the condition of the place, it appears not a single soul lives here currently.

"W-wow, I wasn't positive we would've come across anything at this rate." Ronny was surprised to see an old civilization left to collect dust. For the moment, he fumbles around in his many pockets to fish something out, and of course, it's one of the many waivers he carries, which feels like he has an unlimited waiver for just about anything if someone dares to sue this beloved corporation over. "But before any non-Syntech essential employees dare to take a step in the hazardous condemned village, please, sign here," the attorney mentions about the legal hurdles that visitors must get past before adventure while a pen and paper is in his hands.

In response, Droog growls in annoyance while signing his name impatiently on the waiver against a tree. Meanwhile, Perry looks over to his humongous partner if he remains steady but can tell the look in his eyes that Misha is still burning for vengeance over Della's demise.
 

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Tommy looked through the smoke and the haze, shocked to see another living creature had crashed down on the planet. The immediate question in his mind was if the masked person had come from the same place as them, but he realized it didn’t really matter. They were trapped on this rock together, one way or another. At least he wasn’t being threatened or attacked unlike his whole previous experience up until now.

“Hey, inner exposition! Can you help me out or not!?”


“Yea,” Tommy said as he snapped back to reality. “Yea, hang on.”

Tommy descended into the small crater, approaching the trapped man. He grabbed part of the large chunk of debris and lifted as hard as he could, while the other man pushed up at the same time. After a moment of effort they were able to dislodge the chunk of metal and drop it to the side. Tommy held his hand out and pulled the stranger to his feet.

“Thank you!” the masked man said in fairly out of place chipper tone. “It’s great to meet you! My name is Franco Franchetti, but you helped me out so you can call me by my secret identity: Deadpool.”

“I’m Tommy,” the retired Ranger simply responded, already looking around now that the man was free. “So you crashed here from space, too?”

“Higher than that, I’m afraid!” Deadpool remarked as he began to pick up his scattered weapons. “Do you two know anything about the Star Road?”

Tommy looked around, not seeing another life form that Deadpool could possibly be addressing.

“Two?” Tommy asked as he looked back to Deadpool, but shook his head to address the other issue too. “Star Road? What are you talking about?”

“I’m just kidding,” Deadpool said as he holstered his pistols. “That's just something this writer’s been doing. Seriously, though, I came from that thing at the other place, too. Shit got crazy, right!?”

“Look, maybe you need to sit down for another minute,” Tommy suggested. This guy had clearly suffered some kind of serious head injury on impact, because he wasn’t making a drop of sense.

Nearly as soon as he made the suggestion there was the sound of rustling nearby. It didn’t sound like any kind of woodland animal, but it was close. Tommy instinctively moved to cover and placed his hand on his only weapon left, his pistol. Deadpool quickly took cover on a piece of debris opposite to him, and placed one hand on the hilt of one of his sheathed swords.

“Were you alone on that thing?” Tommy called across as quietly as he could.

“It wasn’t made explicitly clear,” Deadpool replied as he peaked around the corner.

“Then what the hell is here with us?” Tommy snapped, trying to get one coherent answer out of the man in all red.

Deadpool looked directly at Tommy to give a firm nod while his voice took a deeply serious tone.

“The plot.”
 

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Ronny let himself breathe a little sigh of relief as he collected his waivers, taking what solace he could in his little slips of safety. He wasn’t precisely sure when everything started going to shit, all he knew is that it hadn’t stopped since then. He might not have been as passionate as Misha, but he hardly enjoyed watching their pilot’s remains be devoured. Still, he had a job to do, regardless of whether or not it made him one of the “babies”.

Satisfied with his legal safety, the lawyer took a moment to get a good look at the village. Thankfully, the place was pretty much uncharted, so it probably wasn’t a heritage site, and the waivers cleared Syntech for any unexpected building collapses and the like. The creature hunting them, however, was a far more pressing matter. Ron was no xenobiologist, but he was sure than anything that made the ground sizzle when it bled was bad news. The heavy seemed confident that he could take it down, but Syntech found it hard to mirror his sentiments.

“Come.” Misha ordered once everyone was ready, his face set in a grim mask of determination. He had been intimidating before, but ever since Della had died he had been on a whole different level. The thought of trying to hold him back again made Ronny’s legs turn to jelly, almost wishing that he was back crawling around to hide from body-horror abominations. Still, if it meant protecting Syntech, he would do what he had to, regardless of how many limbs got snapped in the process.

The group spread out to explore the village, though they made sure I stay in eyeshot of one another. They could mostly be sure that no one in the assembled group was a disguised fleshy nightmare creature, but mostly sure wasn’t quite good enough. Admittedly, the attorney was much more concerned with making sure that no one got up to any funny business than exploring the village, so he spent his time glancing from one survivor to another. Thankfully, no one was acting suspicious, which was enough to satisfy the corporate suit, at least for the moment.

Seeing the opportunity to take a moment, the lawyer sighed heavily to himself, his shoulders drooping a little. Or a lot. The combination of being stalked by an alien predator, the possibility of a horrible monster among the survivors, and the responsibility of having to deal with the reckless abandon that the group seemed to possess was putting a lot of pressure on Ronny. Slipping a hand into his suit jacket, he pulled out a reassuring sight, an image of Karl Jak hanging from a branch with the words “Hang in there!” emblazoned across the top of the picture. “Ah… Karl help me.”
 

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End Round 7 / Begin Round 8

Tommy Oliver
Deadpool
"Mortimer Mouse"

Tommy Oliver and Deadpool tried to exercise caution as they slunk through the wilderness, but try as they might, there was little they could do to avoid the inevitable inciting incident that would set them on a full-speed course toward a very literary climax.

The pair had traversed nearly a half mile from the site of Deadpool’s crash when they heard the vile, slavering noises in the darkness around them finally breach the dark, green abyss that encircled them.

“It’s behind us, isn’t it?” Tommy whispered as he saw his newfound associate’s hands move to his weapon.

“Maybe it’s just Mallow?” Deadpool muttered as he drew the swords and turned around. “Nope. That’s a gooey mouse monster. I fucking hate gooey mouse monsters. Always trying to murder me when I least appreciate it.”

Tommy Oliver turned around and grimaced at the hunched over creature glaring at them from across the tiny, tight pathway. There were enough lingering features for him to verify that he was looking at whatever Mortimer Mouse had become—ears, traces of a snout, and even those oversized, cartoonish eyeballs. The pupils had faded though, leaving only the appearance of large white pupils that glared at the pair with a blend of hate and hunger. The rest of Mortimer’s body was a vaguely humanoid physique of slimy black flesh and limbs that seemed to move more akin to liquid than physical appendages. Bladed fingers seemed to grow out from its fists as it opened its mouth to reveal a maw laden with what seemed to be dozens of jagged white teeth.

“That’s one malevolent mouse.” Deadpool chuckled as he jabbed an elbow into Tommy’s ribcage. “Get it? Huh?”

The man furrowed his brow at his companion. “Just help me bring it down before it hurts anyone else.”

Droog
Michael Liberty
Perry
Misha
Ronny

While it may have seemed impossible an hour ago, the mood had soured considerably among the survivors in the deep forest. Still, they trekked on, with the trees giving way to far more tropical variants.

“Yes, this makes sense,” Ronny muttered as he crouched down and lifted a coconut from the ground.

Tommy Oliver and Mortimer Mouse may each post up to two times before the end of this Round. Posting once is also acceptable – it’s really up to how much y’all feel like it.

Other survivors, you will be approaching that Mesoamerican-themed village (so no giant ladies to be found in castles) I spoke about in the last update. You can also opt to return to camp or focus your efforts on the xenomorph (the latter can also be done in the village, but I think you know what I mean).

Please post at least once by Saturday, April 10th at 11:59 PM.
 
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Since Rita had stolen the Green Rangers powers back, Tommy had longed for them many times over the years. Standing there in an unknown world, within an unknown realm, and facing a horror that had nearly taken one life already, he never wanted them more. Surely he needed them now more than ever.

“You still in there?” Tommy called to the deformed, mutated husk of flesh and bone that had once been Mortimer Mouse. “Look, I’m sorry for that whole thing at the registration booth, remember that?”

Despite his attempts to implore the monster to remember its humanity, the beast leaped forward with its teeth gasping for any flesh it could find. Tommy and Deadpool leaped in opposite directions to dodge the monster’s maw.

“Doesn’t look like he remembers,” Tommy spat as he stood up.

“It’s a snack attack!” Deadpool helpfully informed his new friend. “And you’re it!”

“We have to stop this thing before it finds anyone else!” Tommy called over, thinking back on the hopeless Syntech staff and the wounded body of Della Duck. “Come on!”

“Who went to a peace conference in Switzerland and made you leader of this operation!?” Deadpool shouted back from the other side of the furious creature.

“Would you just...!” Tommy barked, trailing off as he snatched his pistol from its hip holster.

Tommy opened fire on his opponent, but the bullets seemed to phase into the creature. His eyes contorted into confusion as he watched it happen, but he wasn’t able to fully process it before the creature rushed at him. With an uncanny roar it slammed him into a tree, knocking the wind from him. Tommy gasped at the impact as his pistol launched from his hands. He braced for another impact only to see two sword blades rip through its shoulders.

Deadpool used the leverage to throw the creature aside, but it bounded back to its feet with little trouble, while the liquid-like features seemed to heal the puncture wounds. Tommy stepped up beside the merc, shaking his head to fight off the daze.

“Heart of gold in a red suit!” Deadpool happily boasted before stopping to think. “That’s not familiar, is it?”

Tommy looked around, not thinking up a response right away. He needed his mind in the moment. So instead he scooped up a large bone, holding it ready to strike. Deadpool suddenly let out an exasperated sigh.

“When I tell people I was lost in the jungle with Rambo they’re going to think guns and explosions everywhere, not Open World Survival with a dash of PTSD.”

Tommy decided to completely ignore that comment, and dashed forward to take a swing with his new weapon. The monster recoiled with the hit, but swung back just as fast. Tommy ducked under it and tried to counter with an upward swing of the bone. The monster stepped back, but seemed unharmed by the strike. Deadpool rushed in to stab at the beast, but it swatted Tommy into him. Melee weapons flew everywhere as the two tumbled onto each other and fell to the dirt.

“This is going well,” Deadpool coughed from their landing zone.

“We’re not leaving,” Tommy groaned as they stood up. “We can’t let this thing hurt anyone else.”

“God, I love a begrudging redemption plotline,” Deadpool mumbled in his own agony. “I’m so in.”

Tommy took a deep breath. His weapons were gone, and he was stuck using his own skills. It was a bit nostalgic, but he couldn’t appreciate it in the moment. Just like the old days, he charged forward.
 
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Aku

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Holding his giantly-made tactical minigun steadily with his two manly hands, Misha and the rest approached the ancient village. Silence fills the air to hear if they were not alone in this civilized area. After a long minute, no sign of life contacted the Syntech employees and guests that made the group. The giant-built Russian mercenary approaches one of the many huts that filled the village's presence. His hand brushes aside the leather curtain that covers the single doorway of the dried clay hut.

It was dark inside with no light source or electrical lighting to get rid of the pitch blackness. From the appearance of how the living space and how dusty it has become, someone left this place a long time ago, leaving everything behind in the same spot the day they disappear. Misha investigates another hut beside the one he first entered, and it was precisely in the same condition as the other. The merc in red returns to his group that was unsure if the homes were safe for entering.

"Seems that whoever lived here left a long time ago." The bald, heavy weapons expert mentions, confused on why this village is in this state. "I say we should search the houses for in case anything useful to bring back to camp or for survival. Not only that, but it can help to find answers to what happened to this civilization's fate." Michael Liberty, the longtime skillful reporter, points out about scavenging the households. "Hm, good idea. Maybe we can find something to aid us. We should stay close and search each hut on the same premise in case that thing returns." Misha agrees with Michael's proposition for scavenging for items that can be useful.

"It's going to be a waste of time! This place has nothing but primitive junk. We need to be tracking forward before dusk happens. There's no telling on how nightfall would be on this useless rock." Droog argues about the situation they're stuck in and becomes easily impatient on scavenging. The heavy weapons guy frowns in annoyance from the words coming out of the stranded gangster that ate his friend's remains and desecrating her grave. That smooth jet-black skinned Carapacian was now showing up on Misha's list of who would prefer as a baby with his temper and manners.

"Right, so you can walk us into our deaths and eat us like sandviches because your well-being and status are higher than anyone else's, tiny coward!" The unsettling heavy weapons expert booms with anger rising as he faces Droog, looking into his eyes with an unforgiving look. Before the pair squared off each other where Droog's height was small compared to Misha's titan appearance, Perry jumps in between the two to halt them. All that Ronny and Michael could do is stand by the sidelines to watch the fight unfold since the two would have pushed them to the side.

"Out of the way, tiny comrade! Let me squash this bug once and for all!" The Russain roared in anger, laying Sasha on the ground and preparing his knuckles for a brutal fight by cracking them loudly. "You'll be eating those words, you fat fuck! I'm about to whip up a salad for you because you looked like you never seen one in your lifetime!" Droog snarls back at Misha in anger, too, ready to beat his head into the ground. They both made scowl upon their faces, knowing only one will stand after this fight.

Perry chatters in his ordinary platypus language in the annoyance of how the two quickly became enemies to one and another. Of course, Perry has no way to speak in the English language, so he drew his index finger in the loose dirt to spell words out for them to read. Since comrade platypus stood between the two, Misha did not want to stomp him in the ground from his rage stopping in his tracks. It took twenty seconds for Perry to write the words out he's trying to say. After he finished writing in the loose substance, his hands dusted off each other to get rid of the dusty dirt covering his finger.

"Stop fighting! That thing will come back and kill us if you bicker long enough!"

Comrade platypus was right. If they continue to fight amongst themselves, no one will be left alive in the unknown wilds at this rate. In response, Misha nodded while closing his eyes, making the scowl disappear off his face. His fists unclenched themselves that became built up with the fighting spirit that raged inside the giant mercenary. Across from him, Droog followed along with the same emotions that Misha experienced.

"He's right, you know. We need to start scavenging and finding something useful to use in case that creature returns to rip us apart even more than before." Michael projected out to the once angry duo, causing the two to turn their heads to face the dirty reporter after his essential words. "Da, we need to find supplies and plan out a trap in case we have to face that thing again." the bald Russian agrees with his other comrade on how the situation has become. "Y-yeah, just like the pesky lawsuits that try to tarnish this company's reputation. Which I have defended Syntech many times in court." Ronny joins in with the clever analogy, boasting about his job.

"It is settled then. We must stay close together and search out two huts at one time to make the process take less time. Once we feel prepared, we head out." Misha pronounces amongst them what will come next on their journey. Everyone else agrees except Droog, who faces the other direction from the others, still thinking that this whole idea was stupid, to begin with accomplishing. The heavy weapons merc looks back at Droog and ignores his ignorance that settled upon the group. He picks up Sasha off the ground and carries the minigun by the handle. They walk toward the first set of huts to search inside for supplies. The single experienced gangster stays outside, keeping an eye out in case they get a hostile company.

Misha and Perry rummage through one hut while the other two try out another house across from them. All by himself, standing outside the hut while Ronny and Michael searched through, Droog leans his back against the clay wall alongside the doorway. He picks through one of his suit pockets to fish out his pack of cigarettes he still carries. One cigarette pokes out of the box for his mouth to grab a hold onto the nicotine tobacco product—the rolled-up stick with chemical substance positions in one corner of his mouth, ready to be lit.

The annoyed gangster lights the cigarette with a lighter in his hand to ease the stress he's been experiencing so far on this long day.
 

Arthur Morgan

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Lost deep in an alien planet’s jungle, wandering around the earthen ruins of an apparently long-dead civilization, Perry the Platypus felt as if he was just about at his wit’s end.

Splitting up to search through the huts seemed like a bad idea, especially considering that they had no idea what sort of dangers or assorted booby traps may have been hidden inside. But, to all appearances, the squarish structures constructed of sun-baked clay appeared... surprisingly harmless from the outside, and Perry thought it safe enough, even if it wasn’t truly up to his exacting security standards.

As Perry and Misha approached one hut, the secret agent took a closer look at its seemingly simple exterior. Strange designs were carved upon some of the stones edging about the entrance, a fine curtain of dried reed-like plants hanging from the top ledge of the doorway. It all appeared quite aged, though, and somewhat discolored from disuse— lively greens darkened by patches of mold and water damage. Gazing upon it, Perry wondered just who might have lived there and, more importantly, where they must have gone.

Being a platypus, though, he couldn’t exactly voice these thoughts aloud to his fellow merc. The heavy weapons specialist merely brushed aside the reedy curtain, forced to duck under the top of the frame due to his large stature— his shoulders briefly brushing against the sides and sending a fine plume of reddish dust cascading over them both. Perry had no such problems, though, and merely padded inside on his little duck feet, his keen brown eyes immediately on the lookout for anything important.

The inside of the hut, if it could even be called that due to its clever mixed clay and stone construction, could best be described as... sparse. There was a bed, of course, made of finely-woven straw and other plant matter. A few windows, through which the vibrant green of the jungle was plainly visible. And, most interestingly, a cooking fire, a few trace marks of charcoal and smoky residue left behind. There was even a slight tinge of burning wood to the air, as if someone had left the fire to die out only the night before. But of course, that was quite impossible, seeing as the rest of this village was clearly deserted.

Curiouser and curiouser, Perry thought, and turned to tell his companion as much with his usual chatter, only to be startled by something he just barely glimpsed through one of the tiny windows cut into the thick clay walls— a face, out amongst the trees, staring back at him.

It was not immediately recognizable as any creature he’d ever known, this face. Its visage blended in near perfectly with the environment around it with a most peculiar chameleon-like effect, but the eyes— Perry reckoned he would be seeing those eyes again only in his worst nightmares, based upon the reptilian quality they possessed.

As soon as his gaze met that of the strange jungle figure, the face vanished like mist amongst the foliage and trees, leaving Perry to wonder if he’d even truly seen it at all. But, no, he knew that he’d seen it— but what was it? Who was it? And why did they disappear so swiftly, upon recognizing that they’d been sighted by a mere platypus?

.... then again, perhaps the climate of this planet was getting to his head. The humidity and the hazy, almost dream-like fog that seemed to pass over them as they’d begun exploring the village... well, it was bound to have some strange effects.

With a shake of his head, Perry returned to his task of searching the hut. They still had to find something to defend themselves with, after all... perhaps the ghostly traces of civilization left behind in this village would have a clue.
 

Sigmund Vrell

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Ronny picked through the abandoned building, finding about as little as he expected to. An ancient bowl with a fine layer of decayed scum at the bottom, a hunk of fabric that may have once been attached to some clothing, a rotten piece of fruit. Nothing even remotely useful. The lawyer grunted his displeasure as he dusted himself clean, wishing he had the chance to spray some Syntech Brand Grime Repellant on his shoes before he had left.

“Well, we didn’t find anything, but at least we haven’t been attacked again. Yet.” He grumbled, his optimism dangerously low. “We still haven’t found any water yet, either. Maybe we should just head back to the base camp and regroup. It’s practically suicide to keep searching while that thing is out here.”

Misha scoffed at the smaller man’s protests, hefting Sasha with pride. “Baby wants to run home to mama? We will fight monster like men, then squash it like bug.” The mercenary’s gaze drifted over to the gangster with this last comment, curling into a sneer as he did.

“Noted, but I really think that we should…” Ronny began before he turned around, trying to find the way they had come from. Instead, he only found jungle in every direction he turned. Shit. It seemed that they weren’t getting out of here without either a stroke of luck or an alien carcass. “...that we should keep searching, and kill that alien if we see it again...”

The other survivors gave him a slew of surprised looks at his change of heart. Misha in particular raised a quizzical eyebrow but didn’t complain about the attorney’s sudden decision to side with him. “Very good.” The giant man said with a grin that sent a small chill down Ron’s spine. Even when he was happy, the mercenary terrified the smaller man.

“Ok, I’ll, uh, keep searching for equipment.” The corporate suit mumbled, doing all he could to stop his knees from knocking together. Ronny made his way back to the clay huts, doing his best to rummage around for anything even remotely useful in defending himself. As he did, he stumbled across something that he hadn’t paid more than a moment of attention to on his first comb-through.

The attorney bent down and picked up a large, top-heavy stick, like an incredibly simple club. Giving it a test swing, it felt sturdy enough with some decent weight. In the hands of someone like Misha, it would be downright flimsy, but in Ronny’s feeble grip it was just right. The makeshift weapon gave him a slight sense of security. Deep down, he knew that it would make practically no difference if the alien attacked him, but it made him feel just a little stronger.

“Pfft… hahaha.” He started laughing, realising how absurd the notion was. He wasn’t about to drop his new club, still clinging to the idea of safety it provided, but he was well aware of how ridiculous it was. “Oh my Karl… I’m so done for.”
 

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End Round 8 / Begin Round 9

Droog
Ronny
Misha
Perry
Michael Liberty

Tommy Oliver
Deadpool
Mortimer Mouse

Karl Jak
Kevin

The battle had been unconventional at best.

A mercenary with countless dimensions worth of experience and the teenager with attitude found themselves in a situation where it almost felt like they were outnumbered as they fought the solitary monster.

Each time they’d try and leverage their advantage against what had once been Mortimer Mouse, the creature would merely sprout the required limbs (or at least crude enough facsimiles) to protect itself.

“There has to be a different way to deal with this,” Tommy muttered as he rose to his feet, using the club as a makeshift support for himself.

“We could start by killing it?” Deadpool remarked nonchalantly as the mouse-turned-monstrosity came slavering at them once more.

***​

Ronny stood in the threshold of the hut. In his hands, he held the club he’d collected.

Had he fallen asleep on his feet?

The lawyer glanced up and saw that dusk seemed to be settling over the planetoid.

“Something tells me that’s not a good sign.”

As it waiting for that cue, someone screamed from the other side of the abandoned village. Club in hand, Ronny cautiously wove his way through a few more huts until he found himself standing just a few yards behind a crouched Misha. The massive Russian’s shoulders were sagged, and it wasn’t until Ronny was nearly standing over him that the Heavy turned, frowned, and slowly shook his head. A beat later, he held up what seemed to be someone’s boot.

A voice from the growing darkness broke the silence. “The reporter?”

Ronny pivoted to see Droog trying to crane his neck to get a better look at whatever remained over the corpse of Michael Liberty. Before the man with a taste for fresh meat could take a step forward, the Heavy’s minigun swung around to great him and even started to whir itself to life.

“No more corpse mutilation for you.”

Ever the lawyer, Ronny lifted a finger. “Technically speaking, that corpse is already thoroughly mutilated.” From a few yards away, Perry, who had been standing in Misha’s shadow over the last few minutes, shook his head and scowled.

***​

Wade Wilson crashed against a tree. He was positively certain that something in the general vicinity of his spine cracked or popped loose, but in all honesty, he wasn’t terribly worried. See, it didn’t matter where he was—he was always himself. While the rainbow bridge back to tea and crumpet land was shattered, that had little impact on the core aspects of his character design. Sure, he’d have to relearn the shit he’d stolen from Street Fighter, and he would definitely had to take some time to hunt down a new Furby, rather than crap one out at an SP’s notice.

But a broken back? Ruptured spleen?

Deadpool wouldn’t sweat those unless he wound up in a world where mutants didn’t exist.

And since modern-day Wanda was too busy making sitcoms for her new mouse overlords, Wade was fairly certain he’d never have to worry about no more mutants.

“What are you doing?” An exasperated Tommy Oliver shouted as he rolled out of a diving leap and scrambled over to his makeshift companion. “Are you seriously injured?”

“No, I was just waiting for Alex to come up with a witty enough punchline at seven am in the morning.”

Tommy scowled once more as he slipped an arm under one of Deadpool’s armpits and hoisted the mercenary up onto his feet. “It’s not pretty, but I believe we’re wearing this creature down with our relentless assaults.”

Our relentless assaults? You’re not the one immune to impalement last time I checked,” Deadpool quipped as he pointed down at the oozing wound in his abdomen.

“No, I’m not, but I believe my point still stands,” the teenager with attitude replied as he turned and swung his oversized bone at the moist creature. The business end of the weapon slapped moistly against the mouse monster’s throat.

“Please change the scene before this metaphors get worse.”

***​

With the night firmly in place over their heads, the survivors pulled together as Sasha’s barrels light up the darkness with staccato bursts of fiery light. Somewhere out in the black, the predator that had hunted them through the jungles lurked and waited for its moment.

“I’m ready to hear the plan whenever we’re ready,” Ronny shouted over the whir of the minigun.

***​

Tommy heard Deadpool scream something nonsensical about pacing, but the Power Ranger was too focused on driving back the monster. While it could still mold and reshape its black, oily body to intercept and adjust to attacks, it was clear that the former mouse was losing some of its step. Its reactions came slower, and it seemed to labor a little more when the club found its mark against part of its ever-shifting physique.

Perhaps sensing what was unfolding in the paragraphs ahead of him, Deadpool moved in to assist his newfound partner. As Tommy landed a glancing blow against the skull of their once fearsome adversary, the mercenary glided in and managed to decapitate the monster before it could react.

With a wet thud, the head that had once been Mortimer Mouse’s smacked wetly against the ground. A beat later, the decapitated skull and the rest of the body crumpled—any semblance of a solid physical shape liquefying in a matter of seconds until all that was left was a slowly expanded puddle of lumpy, sizzling tissue.

“Game over,” Tommy muttered as he leaned on his club and tried to catch his breath. “We should return to the campsite to see how everyone is doing.”

Deadpool seemed like he was on the verge of something witty, but he was grabbed at the wrist by Tommy and yanked away from the scene.

As the twosome departed back in the general direction of the Syntech campsite, the smaller puddle of oil black tissue that had once been a skull started to slither across the forest floor toward the remaining flesh mass.

Droog has been eliminated from final Prize Contention.
Michael Liberty is dead.
Mortimer Mouse is dead.

Next round plot details in a new thread.
 
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