LNH: The Alt.Riders #43

Jamas Enright thad at eyrie.org
Wed Dec 14 23:23:29 PST 2005

[Publicity Kid peeks over the top of the post. "I hope you've checked out 
the exciting LNH adventures in _War Without Worlds #2_ first!"]

Blue Light Productions presents:

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| BLiP |   |   |           |   | |  -|--   |  | o    |
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| #43  |   |   |  | |  |   |   | |   |     |  \ | |  | |  | |    |___
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~~~~~~~~   ~   ~  ~ ~~~~   ~   ~ ~~  ~~~ ~ ~  ~ ~ ~~~~ ~~~~ ~    ~~~
     [The cover features Marsha in a skimpy bikini screaming as a claw
                     menaces her from the front.]

                   "Nothing is sure in a sea fight."

Agent strode quickly through the streets of Net.ropolis, eyes darting
from side to side as he scanned the stores around him. Behind him, Morph
and Dva struggled to keep up.
      "Hey, slow down, will you? We aren't in that much of a hurry, are
we?" Dva pointed out.
      "Do you, or do you not," Agent asked, "remember that Pluto was
      "What? Of course I do, but-"
      "Do you, or do you not, know that it was destroyed by a race called
the Inhilators, who travel in their own planet."
      "Well, yes, but-"
      "And that those self-same Inhilators sent probes to Looni.earth to
threaten the LNH, who still have teams out there trying to hold the
probes off and not destroy them because when the probes explode they
mentally wipe out all around them?"
      "So we've seen, but-"
      "And so far, the only plan the LNH has come up with is to send a
space fleet after the Inhilators, which we all know has as much chance
as a whelk in a supernova?"
      "I wouldn't...what does a whelk have to do with a supernova?"
      "It wouldn't stand a chance in one," Agent said.
      "Hey, are you recapping?" Morph accused. [Indeed. Agent has just
summarized the events of _War Without Worlds #1-2_ - Footnote Girl]
      Agent barely glanced at Morph as he spun to face Dva. "Is it not,
then, a good idea to make all due speed in trying to action another
plan, one that might have a chance of actually stopping these things?"
      Dva took a step back in the face of Agent's intense expression. 
"Fine. Er. Yes. But, why then didn't we take a taxi?"
      Agent spun yet again, flinging his arms open wide. "Because we're
here." Morph and Dva looked up to see the title of the store "Ahab's
Scuba Store - for all your Scuba needs".
      Raising dubious eyebrows at each other, Morph and Dva followed
Agent inside. The scuba store was one of those places which decided that
they had to have a theme, but took the sea motif possibly a little too
far. The store was decorated to look like the bottom of the sea, with a
foamy look to the ceiling, a pleasant blue shade to the walls and a
sandy floor. Racks of designer wetsuits were placed haphazardly, and
somewhere there was the hiss of airtanks being refilled.
      A salesperson approached them, almost double taking as he took in
their outfits. "And what can I do for you today...er...bold heroes?"
      "We're looking for something to help us operate underwater," Agent
said, looking around the store dubiously.
      "Well, the store next door sells a complete range of surgical
supplies, as well as some *wonderful* gowns in a wide range of pastels,"
the salesperson commented.
      Morph and Dva blinked at the salesperson. Agent just sighed. "We
need air tanks, diving outfits, and other accoutrements."
      "Oh, then in that case you've come to the right place. How long do
you want to be able to stay under? What sort of air mix were you after? 
Any colour preference? We have the latest in Armani scuba tanks, but it
helps to know what sort of environment you'll be working in - bright
fish and dull stripes just don't work for me, and neon in the darker
trenches is just so passe."
      Morph frowned at this. Wait a minute...something here was very
      "If any of you can breath underwater, of course, or just hold you
breath for *ages*, you can probably just make do with a mask. We pride
ourselves on our masks, we have glow in the dark masks, see through
masks, masks for people with beards, masks for people without beards,
masks for people without beards who would like to grow one, masks for
people with stubble..."
      Ah, that was it! Now...that means...
      "We also have masks you can't see through for people who are afraid
of fish, we have Gucci masks, we have *urk*," said the salesperson, as
Morph punched him in the stomach, and threw him in the corner. He lay
there like a stunned mullet, with little porpoises dancing around his
      "The hell...?" Dva said, looking at Morph incredulously.
      "The author was ripping off...I mean, paying homage to the exact
same scene in _Guitar Man #2_, and that's how GM dealt with the
situation. The cashier was so grateful to have the salesperson shut up
that he gave GM what he wanted for free."
      The click of a gun made them turn slowly to see a shaking shot gun
now being pointed at them. "Perhaps I should have tried something else,"
Morph said, raising his hands.
      "Who are you people? What do you want?" the cashier asked, his
voice shaking as much as the gun.
      "Relax," said Dva, reaching slowly into her pocket to extract a
piece of plastic. She held the card up. "I trust you take Steele?"
      "Ah." The cashier relaxed immediately at the sight of Stainless
Danielle Steel "I'm a Rich !@$#&" credit card. "Certainly miss,
mademoiselle, your highness...how can I help you today?" [And that was
ripped from...I mean, paying homage to _Writer's Block Woman #4_. 
Archives are your friend! - Footnote Girl]
      "What about...?" Morph gestured towards the stunned salesperson,
still keeping his hands up.
      "Well, as you said, we never liked him anyway."


"So, fine," said Dva, as they exited the store later, with the promise
of their goods being delivered by the time they returned to the LNHHQ. 
"We're going under water. Where? Why?"
      "We need some way of infiltrating the Inhilator planet," Agent
said, as they walked along. "A frontal assault won't work, so we need to
give them something they'll voluntarily want to take on board."
      "A large wooden horse, perhaps?" Morph said.
      "Basically, yes, but this one won't contain people, but a special
surprise that will disrupt their systems. Think of it as a kind of
      "Will it kill them?" Dva asked. Then, more insistently as Agent
didn't respond. "Will. It. Kill. Them. ?."
      "It...may do," Agent conceded. "Ideally...in a perfect
      "What?!" Dva interrabanged. "Ever heard of the right to exist?"
      "Ever heard of 'do unto others before they have a chance to do unto
      "Only as justification for psychotic murderous rampages!"
      Agent beamed at Dva. "There we go then."
      "I didn't mean it in a good way!"
      "And what about the Net.Elementalist?" Morph asked. "We left Barry
behind on that planet. What will your poison do to him?" [This was in
the last issue. - Footnote Girl]
      "There are wider issues at play here," Agent said, although he had
the decency to say so quietly.
      "Ultimate Ninja might have a few words to say about that."
      "Who do you think is helping me with this plan?"
      The rest of the walk was marked by silence and extreme frostiness.
      When they returned to the LNHHQ, the silence was broken only by
Agent's "We've got a flight.thingee waiting for us." They headed for the
stairs, but paused as a voice called out.
      "Alt.Riders, wait up!" They turned to see Kid
Not-Appearing-In-Any-Retcon-Hour-Story's head poking out of a nearby
room. "I wanted to ask you a few more questions about the Inhilators..." 
His voice trailed off as he saw Dva glaring at him. "What?"
      "Don't mind her," Agent said, grabbing at Dva's arm to pull her
away, but Dva moved out of range.
      "I saw you before, didn't I? In the briefing room," she accused.
      "Er, yes. Why?" Kid NAIARHS replied, looking confused.
      "Just what the hell are you doing here? You think you're so
wonderful, swanning about, just doing whatever the hell you like." By
now Dva was face to face with Kid NAIARHS, who still had no idea what
was happening. "Just piss off," she snarled.
      "Now look, I don't know what I've done to upset you," Kid NAIARHS
said, as Morph came up to them.
      "Marsha, please, just cool it okay," he whispered to her.
      "Perhaps, after this is all over," Kid NAIARHS said reasonably, "We
could get together, and talk about whatever is-"
      The punch didn't so much hurt, Dva being marshmallow and all at the
time, but Kid NAIARHS did rock back in surprise. Morph took the
opportunity to grab Dva and pull her away. Kid NAIARHS just gaped after
them as Agent and Morph hustled Dva up the stairs, who continued to
throw dirty looks back at Kid NAIARHS.
      "That could have gone better," Agent muttered as they cleared the
      "It was his own fault," Dva started, only to find herself gripped
around the throat by Agent (who had to stop himself from gripping too
hard as Dva's throat, like the rest of her body, was very pliable).
      "No, it's your fault. You have this problem with black men, and
there is no need to take it out on Kid...whatshisname, just because he's
black. You need to deal with this issue and get over it."
      "#*(# you," Dva's eyes flashed in anger. "Right now, you're trying
to kill another race of beings. Don't try to take the moral high ground
with me."
      They held these positions for a moment, before Morph broke them up. 
"Marsha, you do have a problem," he said, but continued quickly before
she could say anything, "but now is not the time. Agent, you said
yourself, the Inhilators are coming, and we need to deal with them. 
Let's try and get through this at least semi-professionally, and leave
the therapy sessions until later."
      The glaring continued up the stairs, and it was amazing how busy
they could all make themselves prepping the flight.thingee so they
wouldn't have to look at each other.
      "Where are we going, anyway?" asked Morph, completing the final
checks as Dva stowed the last diver suit away.
      "Head out to the In.dir.an Ocean," Agent said. "We're looking for
Asteroid L."
      "Asteroid L?" Morph repeated. "Lagneto's asteroid? We're going to
use that??"
      "You have a problem with it?"
      "Well, yeah. For starters, how do you even plan on finding it? It's
buried in the middle of the ocean somewhere."
      "Already taken care of. Someone who could find it will meet us
there. He's placed a tracking device, so all we need to do is home in on
      "Fine. Then all we need to do is get an asteroid that's stuck on
the bottom of the ocean into space, load it up with this poison, then
launch it across the solar system and hope to hit the Inhilator planet,
which is capable of moving by itself, with it."
      "Exactly. What's the problem?"
      "Makes me glad we left Lillie with Organic Lass," Morph said.
      "I just hope she finishes in time."
      "...you haven't got Organic Lass creating the poison, have you?"
      Agent wouldn't say anything more on the matter.


"We have signal lock," Morph announced, as the flight.thingee flew over
the In.dir.an Ocean. It was fortunate that the flight.thingee could fly
by instrumentation as this particular part of the ocean was suffering a
heavy storm. Morph could see the white crests of breaking tall waves
below, and was glad that it would be far more peaceful underneath the
      "Lock in the trajectory," Agent replied, standing up. "Dva, get
into your suit."
      "What? Why now?"
      "Because, unlike Morph, you can't stand an insertion into the ocean
from a high velocity dive."
      "Um...why would I need to?"
      "Because we are ditching the craft and need to get out so that it
won't become flooded."
      "I think we're missing a large part of the picture here," Dva said,
but still started getting a suit ready alongside Agent.
      "How do you expect us to get the asteroid out of the sea?"
      Dva shrugged. "Don't know. Tractor beams?"
      "One option, yes, but this is a specially modified flight.thingee. 
It can extend an anti-inertia field that will lower the gravitational
potential of the asteroid, allowing a warp field to be erected, and
thereby we can fly the asteroid out and pilot it around the solar
      Morph looked over. "Was any of that actual science, or at least,
pseudo-science, or just complete bollocks?"
      Agent shrugged this time. "I think it came from some Star Trek Next
Generation episode, so ask them."
      "Riiight. Um, I'm not sure I want to know, but how do you plan to
get the flight.thingee attached to the asteroid?"
      "What do you think the best method would be getting the
flight.thingee affixed?"
      "Perhaps we drill down into the asteroid, and then fuse beams to
the flight.thingee in some pastiche reminiscent of _Armageddon_ and
_Deep Impact_?"
      "You'd think that, but you'd be wrong."
      "You plan on crashing this into the asteroid, aren't you?" Dva
      "I did say it was specially modified."
      "So then, we lock the flight.thingee to fly into the asteroid, jump
out of the ship, then go down to the asteroid and..."
      "And get into the now embedded flight.thingee, boot up the systems,
and up we go."
      "And we need to leave the ship, because..."
      "Because the amount of heat generated would kill us all."
      "Not all of us..." Morph muttered.
      "Fine. You stay here then. Dva and I will meet up with you later. 
I'm sure there will be no problems..."
      Morph watched them complete their preparations (with the exception
of both of them deliberately not looking when Dva changed) with no small
amount of worry. For some reason, he felt like he should take a "last
known photograph"...


Dva's entry into the sea wasn't smooth, but it was hurried and panicked
in the brief time they had to exit the flight.thingee during the storm
before it went under the water.
      It took her a few moments to orient herself, but she managed to
sort out which way was up before seeing Agent swim downwards like he
didn't have a problem. Probably didn't, the bastard...
      Dva concentrated on her technique, having been a while since last
time she dived, but soon the sure strokes came to her, the regular
breathing, the easy way of slipping through the water...the mind numbing
effect of keeping track of Agent ahead of her...
      The water darkened considerably around her, and even the underwater
torch she had didn't show Agent up too clearly. Ye gods, if she got lost
down here...
      And just how far down did they have to go? Okay, it was the
In.dir.an Ocean, but still...there was a problem of light, pressure and,
eventually, air. They had plenty for a few hours, but after that...and
their own transport had plummeted far below them already.
      Perhaps they should have put some more thought into this, Dva
finally considered. Agent's plans were always best concerning him, and
rather fuzzy for the rest of the participants. At the very least they
should have used rope or something so they wouldn't...
      Crap! Where the hells was he? Dva shone the beam in several
directions, but could see nothing in the immediate vicinity that looked
like anything other than deep ocean.
      Crap crap crap crap crap...
      Right. Calm down. You're just stuck in the middle (literally, as
far as she knew) of the In.dir.an Ocean, with no idea where the rest of
your team is, no way for them to track you down, and it was really only
a matter of time before something big and nasty turned up for a nibble.
      Crap crap crap crap crap...
      Okay. Take a deep breath. Close your eyes. Switch off the torch. 
And relax...gently open your eyes, bask in the darkness, think of being
back in the womb...well, maybe not, because mother is a bi-
      Hang on. Bask in the darkness...yep...only problem is, the darkness
wasn't. And, moreover, as far as she could tell, the non-darkness was
below her.
      Dva frowned behind her mask, but couldn't think of a decent reason
not to go to the light, and soon powerful strokes pushed her downward. 
Slowly something materialized in the not-quite darkness, and then Dva
saw rock, jutting up from the water below. This must be it!
      At that moment Dva realised her heart was pounding quite loudly in
her ears, and she forced herself to take another moment to calm her
      Which didn't work as something grabbed her around the ankle.
      Immediately she began thrashing, any pretence of a cool, calm
exterior gone as she tried to getitoff, getifoffnow, GETITOFF!! She
flailed about, and hit something with her torch, which then let her go.
      Switching the torch back on, she saw something disappearing into
the distance, but couldn't make out what.
      Panning the torch around, she turned slightly, but couldn't make
out anything other than rock. She swam onwards, continually darting
glances around, but nothing tried to grab her again.
      Although the large shape that suddenly appeared behind her caused
her heart to leap into her mouth.
      The shape moved forwards, and Dva exhaled in relief as she
recognised Deja Dude. This must be the person Agent had been talking
about. The torch lit up his features plainly enough (didn't he need a
diver's suit? she wondered momentarily), and she could see him talking,
but couldn't hear anything. She conveyed this lack of comprehension
through the simple movement of shrugging.
      Deja Dude frowned for a moment, then grinned, raised his fingers
and snapped them (although silently) in the water.
      *Can you hear me now?*
      *Ah, yes. There we go. I've given you a temporary convenient mind
link so we can communicate.*
      *Yes, so that only thoughts meant for conversation will be sent
instead of those strange ones like 'isn't the water black' and 'I must
remember to buy some biscuits' that we are also continually thinking all
the time.*
      Dva wasn't quite sure what to make of that, so simply responded
with *Huh?*
      *Never mind.*
      *Hey, who's that?*
      *What? Who said that?*
      *I did.*
      *<sigh> Unfortunately, mental telepathy doesn't have the same vocal
sounds as normal communication, and so the normal voice patterns we use
to recognise other people aren't readable. Thus, if there is more than
one person, it's very hard to tell who is speaking. Think of it as
communicating over a radio channel.*
      *This is Peter. Who are you?*
      *Peter? As in Silence?*
      *Peter? You can hear Deja Dude too?*
      *Yes. Uh, Deja Dude, it's a long story.*
      *I know the feeling. But perhaps we could move out of here. There
are some dezidens around here I don't think we want to bump into.*
      *I've already met one. Yes, we should move on. Do you know where
Agent is?*
      Deja Dude nodded, and pointed off to one side. As they turned, they
found that, during the mental conversation the aforementioned dezidens
had found them. Surrounded them, in fact.
      Dva swung the torch around, but every time she caught one of them
in her beam. While part of her panicked again, another part of her took
in that these creatures had a humanoid reptilian form, like a man that
was in some kind of scaly fish-based suit. Their heads had fins on
either side instead of ears, their eyes were permanently bulging to take
in the meager light, and their mouths were side open gaping holes full
      *Are those hotdogs? Or cigars or something?*
      *More like some kind of rigid tentacles, but yes, they do look
      *What are they?*
      *This probably isn't the best time.*
      And with that cue, the creatures lunged forwards. While Deja Dude
could easily knock them away with his super strength, Dva wasn't having
quite as much luck. In fact, she quickly found herself in the middle of
a tug-of-war with three different creatures, and could feel herself
literally being torn apart, her diving suit pretty much the only thing
stopping her from going to pieces at the moment.
      *One moment...* Deja Dude found himself tackled by several at once,
and went down, but soon got his bearings, and managed to reach a hand
into his pocket.
      *Cover your eyes.*
      Dva didn't have a free hand, but squeezed her eyes shut as tight as
she could.
      White light burst the water, even through Dva's eyelids, but she
managed to keep them closed until it faded away. When she opened them
again, she found herself surrounded by bodies of sea creatures, and a
grinning Deja Dude.
      *Sodium. Very powerful, especially in water.*
      *You killed them?*
      *They were trying to kill you.*
      *Why is it that genocide is the order of the day?*
      *It's the way of life.*
      *Remember, the Inhilators are trying to do the exact same thing to
      *Yes. I know. Still don't like it. Deja Dude, you were going to
show us to Agent?*
      *Right this way.*
      Deja Dude swum away, Dva following quickly, hoping that relatives
of the recently deceased wouldn't come to find out how their kin were
doing. And trying to push her limbs back together. Her marshmallow
nature easily restored her body to normal, but she still felt overly
      Deja Dude led the way around the side of the asteroid, before
pointing to a large hole on the surface, the entrance to a tunnel that
led inside.
      *Not the most subtle of methods.*
      *It was apparently the only way.*
      *Lagneto has propulsion systems on this asteroid. If we could get
it off the rock bed, I'm sure we could use those to help navigate it.*
      *From what I understand, the flight.thingee is supposed to help
with that first part. And then we can pilot it from there.*
      *Then let us get on with it.*
      Swimming down the tunnel, with only Dva's torch (and the simple
cinematic light that enables the audience to see the
environment...which, by the way, was what attracted Dva to the asteroid
in the first place) to light the way, they eventually came across the
cause, namely the flight.thingee that was now deeply embedded inside the
      *Um. Not sure how we are supposed to get in. I can't see an
      *Flight.thingees aren't really intended to go under the water, or
into space, so aren't fitted with an airlock. However, I think, if we
take a look...this flight.thingee has a rear launching missile tube,
which we can use as an airlock.*
      *...that looks like an incredibly tight fit. And how do we let
Morph know to let us out? Knock on the hatch?*
      *Possibly. Alternatively, I could just teleport us inside.*
      *...why didn't you say that in the first place?*
      *Had to allow for exposition?*
      *Marsha doesn't really get the net side of our reality.*
      *Ah. Never mind. If you would take my hand?*
      Dva reached out and grasped Deja Dude's hand, and then the next
moment she was staring at a gaping Morph, who was staring right back at
      "Wha? Where did you come from?"
      "Mmm-phh." Dva paused as she took the respirator from her mouth. "I
swum down, of course, and met Deja Dude. Very hand guy to know."
      Deja Dude gave a short bow. "Thank you. Is everything ready?"
      Morph waved at the main console. "The impact knocked a few systems
out. I'm just rewiring them now. Should be finished in a moment. 
Um...have you seen Agent?"
      Dva shook her head. "Isn't he here already? He got ahead of me, so
he should have got here first."
      Morph shrugged. "Haven't seen him."
      "Did you check the missile tube?" Dva asked pointedly.
      "Hey, don't look at me like that, it wasn't my idea. And yes, I've
      Dva turned to Deja Dude. "Um, Deja Dude...would you mind doing us a


Agent was quickly becoming very annoyed. It wasn't so much that he had
been ambushed by a group of the sea creatures, or that they dragged him
back to their lair, or that he could barely move with the five of them
holding him down, nor was it the fact that their claws had injected a
kind of toxin into his system that was attempting to rewrite his gene
sequence so he became like them (which gave him a terribly itching
feeling while his body fought back).
      No, the main reason he was becoming annoyed was that they were
continually pawing him! If only they would rend him limb from limb, that
at least would be something, but no, they just rake their claws over his
body like a man wearing a large and cumbersome glove!
      If this continued for much longer, he was going to have to take
steps...possibly knock himself unconscious, which was probably the only
active thing he could do. Fortunately they hadn't managed to rip the
mask and respirator from his face, nor damage the air tanks, or he would
really be pissed.
      A flare of bright white light blossomed nearby, drawing the sea
creatures attention (at least, of those that weren't close enough to get
burnt by it), and gave Agent an opportunity he gladly latched onto.
      With a spasm of his body, he shook the hands loose, and them kicked
himself away, managing to get half of his body free before the creatures
realised what was going on and firmly grabbed him again.
      Agent retaliated by reaching down, grabbing mouth tentacles in each
hand, and yanking. Hard.
      The result was as immediate as it was satisfying. The creatures let
go, and grasped their mouths, obviously in extreme pain. Agent lashed
out with a free leg, and although the movement was somewhat slowed by
the water, he still connected solidly with a creature beside him,
knocking it away from him.
      Thrusting his hands out, Agent grabbed a sea creature head in each
hand, and brought them together. And it wasn't so much a *thonk* as it
was a *squish*. When he let go, the creatures stayed stuck to each
      He turned around to see another creature heading towards him, but
this time not under its own violation, instead propelled by the fist of
a net.hero.
      *Agent, I presume?*
      Agent nodded as he made out the features of Deja Dude, but didn't
      *Um. Hello? Can you hear me?*
      Agent nodded again.
      *You know, this should be working. Can you not transmit?*
      Agent just stared at Deja Dude for a moment, before pushing Deja
Dude away. The creature that had been on a trajectory for Deja Dude now
met the extremely hard elbow of Agent, and came of the worse for it.
      *Right. Thanks. No idea how they got here. Might originally have
been some kind of security force created by Lagneto. They are rather
persistent, but I have found a little sodium does the trick.*
      Deja Dude put thought into action and ignited another bomb,
brightening the ocean depths for a moment. When the light faded, and the
enemies frightened off, Agent pointed downwards.
      Deja Dude frowned and looked in the direction Agent indicated, but
couldn't immediately see...oh, what was that? Moving down, Deja Dude saw
a barrel resting on the sea floor, one end of which was ripped open, and
trails of something floating away, obviously the remnants of what was
inside...and then he saw the symbol on the outside of the barrel.
      *Radioactive waste dumping? That's what caused all this?*
      Agent just shrugged.
      *Right. Well, we'd better get back before more come back. Take my
      Agent looked at Deja Dude's hand suspiciously for a moment, then
reached out and clasped it, and looked around to find himself inside the
flight.thingee, Morph at the controls, and Dva beside him, now returned
to her normal clothing.
      Agent ripped his respirator out. "Are we ready?"
      "Just warming up the warp fields engines now," Morph replied.
      Agent turned to Deja Dude, who looked like he was about to say
something indignantly, and said, "Thank you," as one professional to
      "Er, thanks. Don't mention it," Deja Dude replied, who then watched
slightly bemused (and amused) as Agent moved over to behind Morph.
      "Come on, the Inhilators are probably at Jupiter by now."
      "Well, probably not," Dva said. "Saturn should take them a while,
the rings alone will..." she slid into silence under Agent's glare.
      "Activating now," Morph announced, flicking a switch.
      Everyone's flesh seemed to crawl, and hairs stood up, as something
like static energy built up in the air around them. "Mass at 90%," Morph
read out. "What do we need to get to?"
      "With an asteroid this size? We need to get it down to...er..."
      "30% at least," Deja Dude supplied. "20% if you want any decent
      "Thanks. Make it 20%."
      "Okay, we're now at 70%."
      "Guys, the power readout is pushing 90% usage."
      Agent frowned. "That shouldn't be. At that rate, we won't get past
50%. What's this asteroid made of anyway?"
      "There are some exotic elements in its composition," Deja Dude
replied. "But nothing that should be causing problems...unless..."
      "Some of Lagneto's inherent power leaked into the asteroid, forming
pockets of retardant particles. In which case, if we can saturate them
in the warp field long enough, we should overcome their influence and be
able to lift off without any problems."
      "And if we can't?"
      "Probably blow the engines," Deja Dude said casually.
      "Any help would be appreciated."
      "I'm pretty sure we'll be all right."
      "Power 110%," Dva reported.
      "Mass 55%," Morph added.
      "Care to let us in on the secret?" Agent asked.
      "Wait for it..."
      A shudder ran through the craft, almost a lurch that knocked Agent
and Deja Dude from their feet.
      "Mass down to 40%!"
      "Power dropping to normal levels."
      Agent raised an eyebrow at Deja Dude.
      "Well, I know your Writer wouldn't have any concerns over anything
happening to you, but since I doubt my Writer would have given
permission for anything to happen to me, I'm confident we'll be fine."
      "I'm not sure of that reasoning..." Agent said slowly.
      "Hey, it worked, didn't it?"
      "Mass now 20%."
      "Lift off," Agent ordered.
      There was another judder as the asteroid shifted its position on
the ocean floor, then slowly, slowly, it began to rise. One metre...two
metres...now ten, twenty...smoothly it accelerated to an amazing fifteen
metres per minute, but the power levels on the ship made them not want
to push it any harder.
      At that speed, it took them around half-an-hour to get out of the
ocean, but when they did, an amazing sight awaited them, and it wasn't
the image of an asteroid rising from the waves. The storm had passed,
leaving a sky rich in blueness, but that wasn't the amazing sight
      Above them hung the Inhilator planet, half-lit by the sun, shining
purplely, greenly, pinkly, and more, but there, directly above the
      "Oh crap," Dva said, and the others just nodded.
      "Deja Dude, take Morph back to the LNH," Agent said, not turning
away from the observation screen to see if his orders were being
followed. "Morph, check with Organic Lass to see if she's finished yet.
      "And she better be, or we are all doomed."

NEXT ISSUE: "Alice Knewbee, come with me if you want to live."

CREDITS: The Alt.riders belong to me. Kid
Not-Appearing-In-Any-Retcon-Hour-Story belongs to Saxon Breton.
Today's special guest star Deja Dude belongs to Martin Phipps, and used 
with permission.

NOTES: Okay, today's quiz question is: What movie did I rip the monsters
      And today's quote quiz: who said the title of this issue?

Jamas Enright
"Answers answered and questions questioned."
Homepage: http://www.eyrie.org/~thad/
Blue Light Productions homepage: http://www.blue-light-productions.com/

"If a great state has decided by law that twice two is five, it would be
foolish to allow mathematicians to testify." - Comment during the Scopes
Monkey Trial.

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