REPOST: RAC Challenge! #10

Arthur Spitzer arspitzer at
Wed Oct 7 16:04:01 PDT 2015

Chapter by Mark Rosendorf..

From: franke at (Jerry L Franke)
Newsgroups: rec.arts.comics.creative
Subject: REPOST: RAC Challenge! Ch. 10
Date: 10 Nov 1995 15:02:18 GMT

Continuing the retrospective...


                                RAC CHALLENGE
Chapter 10: I got those Tampa Bay Buccaneers Blues

   by Mark Rosendorf
   title by Marc "The Jazz" Singer
    Dirk's Diary:
     Since escaping two death traps from Dr. Malevo and battling Spurgo
     the Conquestor, a 700 foot robot turned psychotic monster, things
     really started to get strange. I was met by a group called The
     Ultimate Collective who told me that they made me Paragon the
     Ultimate man and not my science and electronics. They also told me
     that I was unworthy and sent out Mary Lu, the Ultimate Woman to
     replace me. She turned evil. Since then, I escaped from the
     Ultimate Collective's grasp, teamed up with Dr. Malevo, discovered
     that Tito and Tina, a couple of kids who helped me escape from
     Malevo's clutches earlier were really my kids, found out that Mary
     Lu was the mother of my kids, sent Dr. Malevo to hell, sent Mary Lu
     to hell, found out they escaped with the help of Aaron Levitz, a
     writer for RAC Challenge, and then things started to get even
     weirder. A fight erupted between myself, all the other Ultimates,
     the Brussels Sprouts, their enemy, the Belgian Waffle and it all
     happened on a world called Brussels where everyone has superpowers.
     Finally, an attack from a 3rd grade gym teacher erupted after I had
     been put in a trance. The weirdest part off it all is that this all
     happened because of some cosmic superball that is supposed to be
     responsible for my superpowers. None of this makes sense... Wait a
     minute, yes it does. If I can just focus myself and concentrate...
     Come on, I've done it before..."
   Suddenly, things get blurry, then pure white, then dark, then white
   again, and finally blurry again.
   "Paragon, wake up," a female voice is heard by Paragon. Then with
   realization, the identity of the voice enters his head.
   "Myrna," Paragon struggles to say, "Then it was all a dream"
   "You've been laying here next to the stadium since Spurgo nailed you
   with a backhand. We're all looking for you. Luckily, I found you
   "What's going on?" Paragon asks as he finally regains his senses.
   "Those Ultimate kids are trying to battle Spurgo but Spurgo is on a
   rampage. He's destroying buildings. Please, Paragon, we need your
   "I'll be there," Paragon says as he rises to his knees, "Just give me
   a minute to think".
   As Myrna runs towards the action, Paragon goes over the very long and
   very intense dream he had; or was it a hallucination? He knows he's
   had them in the past. At the beginning of his career, these dreams
   always helped them solve his missions due to hidden messages within
   the dream. "What was this dream trying to tell me?" He thinks. His
   photographic memory begins to go over every detail from the Ultimate
   Collective to the battle of the Brussels Sprouts vs. the Belgian
   Waffle to the Ultimate Woman. "Of course," the Ultimate Man screams
   and races into action.
   Meanwhile, the Ultimate Twins are standing on a rooftop attempting to
   come up with a way to stop Spurgo whose very footsteps put holes into
   the ground.
   "What are we going to do, Tito," The Ultimate Girl asks her brother.
   "We've got to do something otherwise there won't be any point of our
   being here. Perhaps if we... Tina watch out!!"
   Spurgo reaches at the building the Ultimate Twins are standing on.
   Tito jumps out of the way but Tina is grasped in Spurgo's grip.
   Suddenly, Paragon leaps from a nearby building onto Spurgo's back.
   "Go limp," He yells towards Tina, "and let your brother catch you".
   At that point, Paragon manages to open a lid on the back of Spurgo's
   "Remove yourself, flee," Spurgo screams, "or I will destroy you."
   Spurgo reaches behind to try to swat away Paragon. However, before he
   can, Paragon notices inside the lid that within all the circuits is a
   slot big enough for the Jaz Rswert that he has had on him the entire
   "Time to call you quits, Tin Man," Paragon yells as he fits in the
   Jaz Rswert and Spurgo stops moving. Paragon then leaps off of him
   towards Tito who is checking on the condition of his sister, Tina.
   "What did you do?" asks Tito, "and when did you have time to come up
   with it? I thought you were in dreamland."
   "I was," Paragon explains, "and the one consistent in my dream was
   the Jaz Rswert. I knew my dream was telling me that it was the key."
   Tito gives Paragon a weird look.
   Paragon goes on, "Earlier today, Dr. Malevo had me trapped in a
   building set with explosives. He chose to let me out rather than blow
   me up along with the Jaz Rswert. The reason being that when he let
   that 700 foot monster loose, the Jaz Rswert had a fail-safe chip in
   it that would neutralize Spurgo in case he couldn't be controlled.
   When you two showed up, Malevo was trying to take the chip from me.
   You two stopped him yet he was forced to let the robot loose now
   during the press conference even though he wasn't sure if it was
   "Are you sure Malevo was behind that thing?" Tina asks.
   "Certainly," Paragon responds.
   "Well, now what?" Tito asks.
   "Now I know how to find Malevo and that's exactly what I'm going to
   Tito and Tina simply look at Paragon until Paragon finally turns to
   them, "Would you like to help me beat him?"
   Tina smiles as Tito nods. Paragon begins to fly.
   "We'll do it together," Paragon says as he then mutters under his
   breath, "son."
   "Tina," Tito whispers to his sister, "Do we really have to go through
   with this? He saved your life for Christ's sake"
   "You know we do," Tina replies and they set out to follow Paragon.
   "Son??!?!" Tito questions with a confused look.
   Jorge Steinhoofer enters an office building in Tampa Bay. He turns to
   a desk that is surrounded by trees on three sides. There is a window
   on each side just above the trees. Dr. Malevo is sitting behind that
   "I did my best, Master," Steinhoofer pleads. "That monster was not
   "Your best was not good enough," Malevo announces, "Besides ignoring
   my summons to abort the mission, you allowed yourself to be
   "What? By who?" Steinhoofer looks all around.
   "By me!" yells Paragon who enters through the door. "Your reign of
   terror is finally being put to rest, Malevo."
   Malevo laughs. "I do not think so." Malevo hits a button under his
   desk and a transparent steel slides across the room separating
   himself from Paragon and Steinhoofer. Paragon cannot break it.
   "You've been in this situation before, Paragon." Malevo begins to get
   up. "This room will explode in 5 seconds and I will not be joining
   you." Malevo presses another button and a tree moves to the left
   revealing a secret passageway. He continues, "You do not have the Jaz
   Rswert or anything else to bail you out." The door slams shut behind
   "No!" comes a female cry from behind the trees underneath a now open
   window. In a matter of seconds, Tina drop-kicks Malevo as he falls on
   top of his desk. Tito hits the button underneath the desk causing the
   steel to slide open.
   "It's a good thing Paragon held us in reserve," Tito announces.
   "Now!" Tina yells as both Tito and Tina both run into Paragon pushing
   him and themselves through the door and out of the building. Paragon
   immediately presses a button on his belt which puts him and his two
   young partners into a forcefield. The building then explodes.
   "Do you think he survived?" Tina asks.
   "No, I don't" says Paragon, "Damn, It wasn't supposed to end like
   this. Listen, let's go back to my place. We have some talking to do."
   The place is now Dirk's penthouse in Tampa Bay. One of the nine he
   owns in the United States. Tito and Tina are sitting at the kitchen
   table. Dirk, now as the rest of them out of costume puts a cup of
   coffee for himself across the table from the twins.
   "Damn," Paragon says as he looks at his computers in the den. "So it
   wasn't all a dream. According to my readouts, there really is a space
   ship coming to earth.
   "How about a couple of beers?" Tito asks.
   "Two root beers coming up," Dirk says as he enters the kitchen. Tito
   and Tina look at each other and nod. Dirk starts shouting from the
   kitchen as he gets the drinks. "I don't think you've both been honest
   with me yet!"
   Paragon reenters the room, drops the drinks in front of the twins and
   sits down. "Now how about a little honesty!"
   "I don't think you'll believe me," Tina says.
   "Try me!" Paragon slams his fist on the table.
   "It's time to tell him, Tina," Tito says as he looks down at his
   "Fine," Tina sighs. "But don't say I didn't warn you. Dirk takes a
   sip of his coffee as Tina begins. "We're from the year 2055. We were
   sent back in time because 10 years from now, Dr. Malevo uses an
   invention called the enhancer drug. It allows people to reach their
   fullest potential. It makes strong men stronger and smart people even
   more brilliant."
   "What's wrong with that?" Dirk asks as he takes another gulp of his
   coffee having no idea why he's even listening to this.
   "Because there was a drawback to this invention. It has a
   deterioration factor that effects the part of the body it originally
   enhanced. The people that used it to become smarter will become
   vegetables and the stronger people will become paralyzed."
   "Creators will lose their abilities to create, etc," Tito continues,
   "unless Malevo issues a cure into the world's water system every
   month. He did so only with the condition that he was named ruler of
   the United States."
   "Why doesn't the U.S. cut its losses and stop using his enhancer drug
   and retaliate?"
   "The chemical in the water," Tina explains, "has an addictive tone to
   it. If it is not used, then anyone who experienced it will suffer
   withdrawal symptoms powerful enough to kill. Malevo killed off all
   the scientists in the country and he is currently at war with the
   rest of the world for domination."
   "His enhanced troops are winning, Dirk," Tito says. "That's why we
   came back in time to do what we did."
   "You came back in time to kill him!" Dirk yells. "That's why you left
   him in that building to die! So you could complete your mission, to
   kill him?"
   "We had to kill him." Tina says. "We also have to kill the head of a
   company that first created that drug." Tito and Tina simply look at
   Dirk. Dirk drops his coffee.
   "You're saying that my company invented the enhancer?"
   "You invented it, Dirk." Tito explains. "We have documented proof of
   "And how do you intend on killing me?"
   "We have a pill," Tina says as she pulls out a pill from her pocket
   and puts it on the table. "This pill has two effects. It will lower
   the iron in your blood causing the invulnerability power you gave
   yourself to die out. It will then attack your immune system and put
   you into an eternal sleep. In essence, it kills you. It will do all
   of this in minutes."
   Paragon grabs the edge of his seat. He now realizes that these two
   are not joking with him. "And do you really expect me to take this
   Tina covers her face as if to cry. Tito looks down at Dirk's coffee
   and says in a hurt voice, "You already did."
   Dirk then looks down at his half drunken coffee. Those were the last
   words he hears as everything in the room begins to spin. His sight
   starts to get blurry. Dirk suddenly wants to sleep.
   And now, the torch is passed to Rob Rogers as he continues RAC
   challenge takes a new direction in a story titled: "The Truth that
   could have been anywhere else" in:
     * Next issue: Chapter 11: The Truth that could have been anywhere
       else by Rob Rogers
   Message to all authors: I'm sorry if anyone is bothered that I turned
   the last bunch of chapters into a big dream. I felt that what was
   left to me was a lot of different ideas going in a lot of different
   directions and this seemed like the best way to clear it all up. Now
   we have a time travel story... or maybe not, that will be up to Rob
   and the rest of the authors of RAC Challenge.
   It was a great idea Henry and it was a lot of fun to do. Thanks for
   letting me get involved.



Jerry L. Franke                        franke at
Computer Science Dept.                 Indiana University
formerly from Florida State University

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