LNH: Classic LNH Adventures #41: The Crimes of the Brotherhood Part Four

Arthur Spitzer arspitzer2 at gmail.com
Sat Dec 23 08:52:55 PST 2017

In this weeks reposting of stuff you can find in the eyrie archive
we have the fourth section of the whole EMPLOYEE-EMPOWERED, PARADIGM-SHIFTED,

Firstly, we have Mike D. Friedman with Spite Grrrl #4.  Will Chris Gumprich live or die?  And will you find that out in this issue?  You’ll have to read it to find out.

And lastly, we another issue of Jolting’ Jeff McCoskey’s LNH Triple Play (#7!) with some cowriting help from Martin Phipps.  Ho`’od Win in a battle with Hooded Ho`’od Wins?  Find out reading this issue!

And now..

             | |      Classic			
             | |                      =
             | |      ____    ____    _    ____    ___
             | |__   | [] |  | [] |  | |  | [] |  | _ \  

             |____|   \__]    \__ |  |_|   \__/   |_|\_\
                                |_|  OF NET.HEROES

                                     ADVENTURES #41

                The Crimes of the Brotherhood Part Four

From: gtd597a at prism.gatech.edu (Michael D. Friedman)
Newsgroups: rec.arts.comics.creative,alt.comics.lnh
Subject: LNH: Spite Grrrl #4 (EEPSomethingoranother)
Date: 11 May 1995 12:17:57 -0400

YAMMERCOMICS proudly presents:
@#@!#$!#                           #@)#&(&@               !#&      
#!                   $#            %#                      #$      
*$($&@%# @##@#. !& $#*@#! #@S#&#   @&  ^%#@ %%*# $@#@ !@&! $%      
      #@ %#  #@ $%   $?   $$===    !@    $! #$   $#   $)   $*      
(&#^@%$@ !%#@$^ #)   #@   $#$@@#   $($#$*(@ $#   %!   [!   #(@     
An LNH title guest starring Nit-Pick Lad!                

Really and truly part of the "EMPLOYEE-EMPOWERED, PARADIGM-SHIFTED,

"Chris Gumprich Must Die!"
By Mike Friedman


(Ed. note to the ASPCA: Chris Gumprich appears nowhere in this 
issue and this title is only used as a joke, and in no way has 
Chris been harmed in the making of this book.)




Nit-Pick Lad awoke from his slumber after having his suitcase 
thrown upon his stomach. He looked up and saw a figure moving
around in the light. The BRIGHT light. Finally, as his eyes 
adjusted, he saw Spite Grrrl motioning him to get moving.

"Well," she said, "Are you gonna pack or not?"

Nit-Pick Lad sat up, "W-where are we going?"

"Man.net.toba," she replied, "I have a score to settle with this
guy who says I'm annoying. Of all things! Me--annoying! Imagine

"Ahh, I see."

"Well, get packing and I'll meet you downstairs."

"B-but," started Nit-Pick Lad. Before he could finish his thought,
Spite Grrrl had already left his quarters at LNH HQ.

"Darn," he said, grudgingly packing up his belongings.



Spite Grrrl sat in the waiting room, flipping through the pages 
of Net.tional Geogra.fan-fic. Trux sat on the table next to her, 
peering into her coffee cup. 

_Are you gonna finish that?_ he questioned.

"Nah, you can have it."

_What do you mean I can *have* it. Is that supposed to be some
kind of @^#&%$ joke?_

Spite Grrrl seemed shocked, "What're you talking about?"

_You know damn well that I am an inanimate object. I can't drink

"Jeez. Calm down, will ya? I just wasn't thinking," defended Spite

Trux continued his rant, _Fine then. See if I go with you to beat
up this... What was his name, again?_

"Chris G-something or another. He supposedly reviews comics or 
something," she replied.



A lone man sat in the back of a cab in the middle of suburban 
America. He seemed to be deep in thought.

"This is the best idea that I think I've ever had," he thought
to himself, "While the rest of the Brotherhood is planning big
crimes in Net.tropolis and the big cities, Polybag Person is 
going to strike it rich committing thousands and thousands of
petty crimes in the holiest of holy lands--SUBURBIA!"

The cabbie turned to Polybag Person, "So, do you have relatives
in Lafay.net? Or are you just visiting?"

"Oh I am just," he paused for a second, noticing a comic shop 
on the corner, "Uh...I am just VISITING! HAHAHAHAHA!"

"Was that supposed to be ominous sounding laughter?" asked the
cabbie, "Cause I thought it sounded really stupid myself. I mean
'visiting' really isn't that scary of a word..."

"Shut up and drive..."



Nit-Pick Lad lumbered out of the stairwell door, holding two 
suitcases in his hands. He gasped for air as he fell to the 

"Oh goody," stated Spite Grrrl, "He's ready. And just in time,

Trux grumbled something about not getting enough attention.

"What did you say, Trux?"

_I said, I'm staying here!_

"But why?" pondered Spite Grrrl.

_Cause it is stupid to go all the way to another country to beat
up a guy just because he called you annoying,_ he replied.

"Hmmf. That's because he didn't call *you* that," she muttered 
in response.

_Oh yeah. Well, you are a member of the LNH now, you can't just 
go around bashing people's heads in with broken beer bottles just
because they don't like you._

"Everybody should like me," she grumbled.

The conversation was interrupted when Spite Grrrl noticed a slight
tugging at her coat. She instinctively kicked it away before she
noticed that it was Nit-Pick Lad collapsed on the floor. Well, 
now he was collapsed on the floor with a bloody nose.

He whimpered in pain, "Shit..."

Spite Grrrl kneeled down beside him, examining the wound, "Damn!
I'm so sorry. I didn't mean it! Honest!"

_Yeah, yeah, yeah. Why don't you just admit that you're in love 
with him already,_ interceded the stuffed raccoon.

"Shut up, Trux!"

_Maybe you should give him CPR, so you can get your lips all over

"Shut up, Trux!"

_While you're at it. Why don't you just unbuckle..._

"That's enough, Trux!"

_Okay. I see when I'm not wanted,_ he sighed, _I'll just be over
here on the coffee table sitting next to a half cup of coffee that
I can't drink..._

Spite Grrrl had enough. She picked up Trux and threw him in 
Nit-Pick Lad's suitcase. 

"There. That's better," she said over the muffled rantings of the 

She tended some more to Nit-Pick Lad's wounds, and then helped him
into her new armored cab. Nit-Pick Lad looked at it. 

"What's this?" he asked.

"Oh," replied Spite Grrrl, "That's my replacement for my van. It
was too expensive to get a new one, so I bought this cab at a 
salvage yard."

"Where did you get it fixed?"

"I did it myself. I'm pretty handy with tools. The armor was a
different story," said Spite Grrrl, stopping.

"Well?" asked Nit-Pick Lad.

"I said it's a different story. I'm not gonna tell it now."

If the two could hear into the suitcase they could have heard 
Trux yell out, _It's an unresolved plot thread, you dolt!_ But
they didn't.



Polybag Person sat back in bed and threw his shoes off. He 
clicked on the TV. While he was watching, he took out his new 
copy of _Arvie the Wonderdog_ #1. It was a collectors item--
it had to be sealed! He pulled out his new Auto-Polybagger 
device and set it for seal. It instantly covered the comic in
shiny plastic--hermetically sealed for his viewing pleasure.

"Hmmm. I wonder what the story is about," Polybag Person felt
tempted to open it back up, but then realised it would lose
value if it were to be opened. "Oh well, no big deal."

He looked around the room. Thousands upon thousands of mint
conditioned, vacu-packed comics lined the tables and beds. 
Boxes were placed around the room, filled with many instant
collectors items. 

"Fabulous First Issue! First Issue Collector's Item! The 
Premiere of a Brand New Hero! Yes, they are all mine! This town
of Lafay.net has four comic shops per high school student. There 
are so many stores to rob here, and no LNHers venture out to the 
suburbs! When I sell these puppies back, I'll have increased 
profits by nearly 25000%!"

A huge smile appeared on his face. He knew he would no longer
be under-estimated by his fellow Net.Villains again.

He looked up at the TV screen and noticed that the news was 
about to come on, "This is what I've been waiting for!"

He turned up the volume, "...also today, in the small suburb of 
Lafay.net, one hundred of the town's 402 comic book shops were
robbed in what is being dubbed 'The Great Comic Shop Disaster'.
We have made a nifty logo for our news coverage, which will last
around the night..."

Polybag Person laughed as he changed the channel, "...Robbed!
Lafay.net Under Siege: Day 1..."

He flipped to the next station, "...it was reported by the LNPD
that the estimated cost of the stolen goods was 'too large for
us to count on our fingers'. Our Channel 34 investigative team 
believes that to mean in the range of eight dollars to over a
million dollars. Stay tuned to our Channel 34 Flashpoint News
coverage for more on Comics in Crisis '95!..."

He sat back and sipped his drink, satisfied that he did a job
well done, "Tomorrow, I get another hundred..."



"Crap," yelled Nit-Pick Lad, throwing the tire jack to the ground,
"We've hit metal. The wheel is damaged. We're screwed."

Spite Grrrl was busy getting Trux out of the suitcase. She was
crawling around in the back seat, "Ah! There you are."

_Great. Did you bash his brains in yet?_

"Nope," stated Spite Grrrl, "In fact, I may just verbally berate 
him. That way I don't have to exert myself as much."

_Wonderful,_ commented Trux, _Why don't you just let bygones be

"Hey," she continued, "He's the one that called me annoying. So,
I'll just show him how annoying I can be. Besides, there wouldn't
be much of a story if I just decide to turn back now, would 

Trux just sighed.

There were a lot of foul mouthed screams coming from outside of
the renovated cab. Spite Grrrl looked out to see what was wrong.

"What's up?" she questioned.

"Look's like we're walking," he responded, "I think there was a 
gas station back at that last exit. We can go check it out."

_Lovely,_ commented Trux, _Just lovely._



"So then I said to him," continued Nit-Pick Lad, "You're not
invulnerable. Maybe nigh-invulnerable. But not invulnerable."

Spite Grrrl laughed at Nit-Pick Lad's anecdote. Trux was not
so amused, however, _What the heck is so damn funny? That was

Spite Grrrl pretended not to notice his ranting and ravings and
continued to speak with Nit-Pick Lad as the walked along the 
shoulder of the highway. She noticed a sign on the other side of
the road.

"Hey look! Lafay.net: 1 mile!"

"Look's like we're almost there," Nit-Pick Lad added.

_Well DUH!_ said Trux.

The three continued until they reached the outskirts of town just
off of the exit. The first building they came to was a small comic
shop. They decided to go in for directions.

The shopkeeper leaned over the counter, "Tires? Can't get them 

"Okay. What about a gas station?" asked Spite Grrrl.

"Can't there from here."

"Uh, okay. Tow truck?"

"Don't have 'em round yonder."

"Well, is there anywhere we can go?"

"Look lady. This is Lafay.net. Comic book capital of the world. 
If you could get a tire round here, then we couldn't be called
the comic book capital."

Nit-Pick Lad burst in on the conversation, "You do have a hotel

"Yep," replied the shopkeeper

"Well, just because you have a hotel doesn't invalidate your 
status as the so called 'Comic Capital' does it?"

"Nope. But that's different."

"Why? Why is it any different?"

"Because they hold comic conventions there everyday."

Nit-Pick Lad sighed, "Well. How do we get to the hotel?"

"Hotel?" continued the shopkeeper, "Can't get there from here."

"Aaaaaaah!" yelled Spite Grrrl, jumping over the counter and 
grabbing the shopkeeper's neck, "Look. We've walked over five 
miles to get here and we will not be jerked around by some no
name shopkeeper. Now...WHERE CAN WE GET A DAMN TIRE!"

"Tire? Can't get one..."



"So," Nit-Pick Lad continued, "His dumb, know-nothing attitude was
just a clever ruse to make people buy comics, thinking there would
be no other way to spend their money."

"Yeah," agreed Spite Grrrl, "I guess. At least he finally admitted
that there was a tire place in the center of town."

_Yeah. And it was fun to beat up on that jerk,_ added Trux, _Of 
course, now I'm being hypocritical. Oh, what the hell, let's kick
that reviewer's ass._

"Not so fast, Trux," continued Spite Grrrl, "We need to get to
Man.net.toba first. But, it is getting late. We better get to the

Nit-Pick Lad was still pondering the comic store, "I wonder how 
that guy stays in business while being such a jerk."

Just then, all three noticed a small kid walk in with a baseball
bat. From inside, they could here some faint talking. "Okay, man.
Are you gonna sell me those new comics, or do I have to rough you

_Jeez. Tough neighborhood,_ thought Trux.

"Oh well," said Spite Grrrl, "On to the hotel."



Polybag Person stood in the lobby, looking ominous. He kicked 
convention-goers out of the way as they walked past.

"Look out, Lafay.net," he said, "Polybag Person's here to liberate
your comics from their oppressive non-sanitized air. And there is
no LNH here to stop me! HAHAHAHA!"

Just then, Spite Grrrl and Nit-Pick Lad walked through the hotel's
revolving door.

"Damn," said Polybag Person, "I hate irony."


NEXT ISSUE: The conclusion of Spite Grrrl's part of the EEPScetera
crossover! Will she get to Man.net.toba?

Spite Grrrl #4 and the characters Spite Grrrl and Trux are copyright
Mike Friedman. (c) 1995 YammerCo. Permission to reprint only with 
this copyright notice. Polybag Person is copyright barnejd at wkuvx1.
wku.edu. Nit-Pick Lad is a public domain LNH character.

Michael Friedman             | MILK:   "I'm a carton of hate"      
gtd597a at prism.gatech.edu     | CHEESE: "I'm a wedge of spite"
hrivnak at havoc.gtf.gatech.edu | read -MILK & CHEESE- by Evan Dorkin.

From: jmccoske at sedona.intel.com (JJMcC and Martin)
Newsgroups: rec.arts.comics.creative,alt.comics.lnh
Subject: LNH:  LNH^H^H^HBoNV Triple Play #7  (EEPSIODSRCotBoNV #8)
Date: 22 May 1995 17:56:11 GMT

---' `---' `---' `--- //////////|||||||||||||||\\\\\\\\\ ---' `---' `---' `---
 Pseudo-Random House |////////||||||LLLLLLL||||||\\\\\\\|   EEPSIODSRCotBoNV
	COMIX	      >//////....  (       )  ....\\\\\<        PART 8
___   ___   ___   ___|....        /|starring        ....|___   ___   ___   ___
///`v'///`v'///`v'.	        HOODED HO`'OD WIN 2        .`v'\\\`v'\\\`v'\\\\\
///////////...		    	  ||       |                     ...\\\\\\\\\\\\
///////..			  ((_______)                          ..\\\\\\\\
////_______			   `------'		    	     _______\\\\
///(       )			 ____     _______		    (       )\\\
///        |			|    |   |   _   \	           /        |\\\
 RUMOUR MONGER        _______	|    |   |  |_)   )                LOBDELL LAD
  ||       |         |   _   \  |    |   |    ==='   ____          ||       |
  ((_______)         |  |_)   ) `===='   `==='      |    |         ((_______)
   `------'          |        \        ..   	    |    |          `------'
          __________ `===='`==='     .'   `.	    |    \     /~~~~~|
         |          |               : (BNV) :       `======   |  ,==='
         |          |               `.     .'                 |  `~~|
         `===    ==='  _______        ` ..'      ____    ____ |  ,=='
             `=='     |   _   \   ____      ____ \   \  /   / `======
                      |  |_)   ) |    |    /    \ \   `'   /
                      |    ==='  |    |   /  /\  \ `=    ='
                      `==='      |    \  |   `'   |  `=='
                                 `====== `==='`==='
                         ...                           ...
                             ...      _______      ...    
                                  .. |       | ..
                                     |  #7   |
                                     Spring 95
                                       \   /

	{Cover is a blank silver faceplate, resting on a desktop. 
Reflected in the plate is a hooded figure reaching for the plate. 
Something unclear is wrong with his face.  Also reflected is a memo
which reads "TO:  BoNV  RE:  Goals and milestones for profit enhancement
through individual quality-orientation and..." then distorts beyond

{At bottom the distinctive stock-ticker logo of the EEPSIODSRCotBoNV
scrolls past.}

CONTINUITY NOTE:  Takes place prior to _Writer's Block Woman (and Mouse)_ #18


			"Collateral Damage"


	Haitus stopped by Hooded Ho`'od Win II's cubicle in the Lair of
the Brotherhood of Net.Villains.  They were the only two still around
the office at the late hour.
	"HH -- got your crime planned out yet?"
	HHW2 spun around.  Beneath his hood, the flourescent lights
briefly shone on the featureless silver faceplate.  HHW2 'stared' at his
co-Net.Villain.  He nodded in response to Haitus' question.
	"Can I take a peek?" he laughed nervously.  HHW2 shook his cowl. 
"Didn't think so.  Can you at least tell me if it involves the LNH?" 
HHW2 was motionless for a long time, then nodded once.  "Look I think
something has happened to Revamp Lass -- I can't really talk about it,
but now that Mr. Homage has let us attack again, I really need to drop
by.  Can I tag along in your attack?"  Haitus' voice was embarrassed. 
HHW2 remained motionless, his blank, reflective faceplate regarding
Haitus.  "Hey!  I've got my own crime, I just need to get into the LNHHQ
on personal business."
	After a long pause, HHW2 shook his head in the negative, then spun
back to his desk.  Haitus left with a distressed expression.

		===============		===============

	Hooded Ho`'od Win's great dark cloak swirled about her as
Cheesecake-Eater Lad and Parking Karma Kid circled menacingly.  PKKid
launched a not-too-shabby snap kick as Hood flashed beneath the strike. 
C-E Lad grappled, but came up only with cloak.  Hood's leg darted out,
sweeping PKKid off his feet.  A free hand darted out, locking C-ELad in
an arm bar.  Her cloak swirled dramatically about her, then she and the
Cheesecake Champion melted into the shadows.
	Parking Karma Kid's eyes narrowed as he scrutinized the the room. 
He leapt to the emergency lights above the exit and mashed the test
button.  Halogen lamps burned the shadows from the arena, revealing Hood
in the far corner.
	C-ELad took advantage of Hood's momentary disorientation and
slammed a foot into her stomach.  PKKid slid across the slick floor as
C-ELad restrained her from behind.
	"I've always wanted to do this," he said grinning evilly.  PKKid
reached a hand to the heroine's hood and clenched the soft material in
his fist.
	"So whaddya think she looks...."
	<(End excercise.)>  The Legionnaires abruptly disappeared from the
Peril Room, leaving Hood alone in its sterile depths.  The halogens
flashed out and Hood melted into the darkness.  Moments later, a cloaked
hand pulled a videotape from the monitor, then the Peril Room went
completely dark.

		===============		===============

	Ultimate Ninja addressed the closed meeting.  Occultism Kid, Dr.
Stomper, Kid Kirby, Multi-Tasking Man, Innovative-Offense Boy, Catalyst
Lass, Master Roster Man, and Deja Dude were studying a bizarre diagram
I-O Boy had constructed.
	"Here's what we know so @#$#$*$in' far..."
	Deja Dude interrupted.  "For decorum's sake, why don't I sum up?"
	"Yeah, like that's a #*&$!in' trait you're *&$@#?#@in' known
for," grumbled I-OBoy.
	Deja continued.  "So far, we've seen attacks on various LNH
members by X-Intruder, Professor Perhap, Grim, Gritty, RobGoblin,
	"All members of the Brotherhood of Net.Villains," interjected
Master Roster Man.
	"Jeez, I'd forgotten they were still around," remarked Multi-
Tasking Man.
	Deja Dude continued.  "I-OBoy's analysis seems to indicate that
they're building to something.  They have never been able to act without
the strict supervision of Mr. Homage..."
	"Who ain't too %$@^$in' shabby in the strategy department
himself," noted I-OBoy.
	"So you're suggesting Mr. Homage is coordinating these attacks for
some nefarious purpose?" questioned Catalyst Lass.
	"Yeah, only I can't *&@!%#$in' figure out what it is.  It's gotta
be *&@$#in' genius."
	"Occultism Kid, could you divine their plot?" asked Cat.
	"I don't think so Cat," answered Dr. Stomper for the Mystic
Master.  "Scrying for intent and influence requires objects that are
intimately associated with the divinee."
	"Well, now that you've _explained_ it that way, they do," grumbled
	Ultimate Ninja spoke.  "Keep on it I-OBoy.  I'm tired of reacting
to the Brotherhood's attacks.  Let me know as soon as you solve it so we
can take the fight to Mr. Homage."

		===============		===============

	Hooded Ho`'od Win slunk down her shadowy corner of the LNHHQ,
perhaps the only dimly-lit hallway in the entire building.  Captain
Napalm and Nomex Man nearly ran into her as they turned the corner.
	"Ye gods, Brother Nomex, kindly watch where you go.  You nearly
trounced friend Hood."
	"Your words would carry more weight, Brother Napalm, if you were
not extracting your own size nine from her cloak."
	<(Hello, gentlemen.  I didn't mean to startle you.)>
	"The error is ours, friend Hood.  Is it not Brother Napalm?"
	"Indubitably Brother Nomex."
	"Ah!  We are soft-minded fools, Brother Napalm!  Forgive our
oversight friend Hood, but there was a tall, angry man looking for you
	"Your veracity is blinding, Brother Nomex.  He had short hair and
shorter temper, and carried a massive sheaf of papers."
	"Do not forget the coils of rope, Brother Napalm."
	<(Thanks guys.  He did catch up with me, but I managed to divert
him by sending him after Easily-Discovered Man and Writer's Block
	"Was he a villain?"
	<(Not...in the classical sense.  Though another month of delayed
_Ultimate Ninja_ and who can say?)>  Hooded Ho`'od Win melted into the
shadows and was gone.
	"Brother Napalm, did you understand that encounter?"
	"Nay, Brother Nomex.  I think perhaps, somewhere, the Injoker is
cackling away."  [In the pages of Easily-Discovered Man, to be exact--

		===============		===============

Meanwhile, at the Comedy Net:

	The featured comedian that night was giving his monologue.  "What do
you get when you cross Rebel Yell with Lost Cause Boy.  A rebel without
a cause!"
	Out in the audience, Lobdell Lad laughed and shook his head.  "I don't
care how many times Bad Pun Boy tells that one, he _always_ cracks me
	Rumour Monger didn't so much a crack a smile.  "Now, Scott, don't
change the subject on me.  This is important Brotherhood business that
we need to discuss."
	Lobdell Lad sighed.  "Look, Eric, I don't know: I don't think I'm cut
out for handing superhero/supervillain confrontations."
	Rumour Monger nodded.  "So I've heard.  Thing is though, Mr. Homage
is counting on all of us to do our part."
	Lobdell Lad grimaced.  "But I thought Mr. Homage didn't want us to
strike out on our own."
	"That was back when we were officially the most evil, nefarious,
supervillain group of them all (or so the roster claimed).  Now,
though, we've got competition: groups like Pencil Rain and S.C.U.D.
are stealing away all our business.  And when we _are_ approached
about doing a job, such as that planned kidnapping of Kid Chivalry,
it never goes anywhere."
	"What happened?"
	Rumour Monger shrugged his shoulders.  "I don't think people are
taking us seriously anymore: few people remember that we were the ones
who blew up Legion Headquarters."
	"I thought that was Acton Lord?"
	"No, you're thinking of Mr. Minister."
	"But if it was Mr. Minister who blew up Legion Headquarters--"
	"Look, Scott, I wasn't talking about the Electricutioner's Song.
We blew up Legion Headquarters during The Flame Wars."
	Lobdell Lad groaned.  "Oh, that's right!  I had a gig that night."
He mused for a moment.  "Well, gee, it isn't everybody who gets to blow
up Legion Headquarters.  You'd think people would remember that."
	"You would," Rumour Monger said, "but apparently people are more
interested in what we're doing right now."
	"Which is?"
	"Oh."  Lobdell Lad nodded, thoughtfully.  "I see the problem."
	"Now, I suppose part of the problem is that we've got so many members:
too many for most potential employers to keep track of."
	"But I thought the idea was that we had to be big in order to pose a
threat to the Legion?"
	Rumour Monger's eyes rolled back.  "There are over a hundred
Legionaires now.  We're no real threat to the Legion if we ever were:
I don't think we'd even be much of a threat for Kid Kirby.  Besides,
all this time we haven't even passed ourselves off as a threat to the
Legion, preferring to stay far down on their list of priorities."
	"So... is that what Mr. Homage wants us to do?  Attack the Legion?"
Lobdell Lad asked nervously.
	"Not necessarily: but it has to get people's attention.  Basically
what we need to do is get back the Brotherhood's `evil, nefarious'
reputation.  Then we might have some bigger jobs come our way."
	"Well... OK... it's just that."  Lobdell Lad sighed.  "Look, frankly
I was thinking of going straight."
	Lobdell Lad nodded.  He looked around at all the people in the club:
the audience, the waitress, his fellow comedians, the bartender, the
waitress and then looked back at Rumour Monger and began his
explanation.  "Eric, it's like this: I've made friends here, friends outside
of the Brotherhood.  I don't want to let down my brothers and sisters in
crime... but I don't want to lose what I have here either."  He
reflected for a moment.  "You know, every once in a while I get up on
stage and I feel that I'm the centre of attention.  OK, so maybe they
came here expecting to see Diceman but, still, as long as I'm on stage
they're _my_ audience."  He sighed.  "I'm sorry but you can't know what
that feels like unless you've done it yourself."
	Rumour Monger shrugged his shoulders.  "I'll have to take your word
for it.  Me, I make my living by _not_ being the centre of attention."
	"So... what are you going to tell Mr. Homage?"
	"I'm going to tell him you died," he said flatly.
	"You're going to _lie_?!"
	Rumour Monger smirked.  "Are you going to perform the same routine you
did last week?"
	"Then I won't be lying."
	"Very funny," Lodbell Lad said, trying to be sarcastic.
	They looked back to the stage where Bad Pun Boy was finishing up
another joke: "So I asked, 'What's your name?' and she said, 'I'm Tu
Yeung' and I said, 'Oh, darn, I thought you might be'" and they groaned.

		===============		===============

	Innovative-Offense Boy paced his room angrily.  Ordinary Lady
lounged on his bed, and it was a testament to I-OBoy's preoccupation
that he barely noticed.
	"Mac, are you ok?"
	What?  &%!$, sorry Jean.  It's this *&@#%in' Mr. Homage *&!#. 
He's crafted a plan so *%%@in' brillaint, I can't *!@#$@in' piece it
together.  I mean, I thought the *(&@#$*#in' Clueless Master was hot
	"You'll get it Mac.  I know you will.  Don't let it cut you up
like this."
	"I'm sorry Jean.  *&@%.  You know me though.  I can't *(&@#in'
rest until I've *&@########..."  The obscenity died on I-OBoy's tongue. 
"Cut me...?  Wait a &*@%$(@!-*&@*%in' minute.  *#@&$!  I've got it!"

	Ordinary Lady presented I-OBoy's findings to the gathered muckety-
mucks of the LNH, since the Strategist Supreme was too pleased with
himself to utter anything but obscenities.
	"Here's what we know.  X-Intruder and Robgoblin attacked the
Sidekick Squad in Chessman's old headquarters.  Bizarre Boy was
triggered into some bizarre state by Professor Perhap.  A Godzilla-sized
Eraserhead wandered through Net.ropolis until the Substitute
Legionnaires brought him down.  And Swordmaster fought a suspiciously
repetitive battle against himself, again.
	"I-OBoy thinks it figures like this.  The Sidekick Squad was
raided to gather data on Chessman's weapon that created sidekicks. 
That's why they broke off the attack prematurely.  The Brotherhood used
that data to assemble a weapon, which they 'modified' by triggering
Bizarre Boy.  His powers must have been guided somehow by the
potentiality-shaping powers of Professor Perhap.
	"This created a super-weapon that could enhance their powers
without making them sidekicks.  Eraserhead was the first test of this."
	"How does this connect to Repetitive Lad and Swordmaster?" asked
Irony Man.
	Innovative-Offensive Boy was unable to contain his excitement any
longer.  "That's the *#@$@in' key to it all!  Swordmaster's powers are
to be the *#@&#in' best swordsman in a *@#$in' room.  The *@#&@$^in'
Brotherhood needed to *@#&$#$in' eliminate him because..."  Innovative-
Offense Boy turned on the overhead projector.  A newspaper article
flashed above the LNH's head.
	"Diamond Show and Fencing Tournament -- Net.Ropolis' 12th annual
Ice and Slice Convention TODAY!"
	Ordinary Lady squeezed her partner as she concluded for him.  "The
Brotherhood of Net.Villains is going to power themselves up and rob the
Ice and Slice!"
	"Are you sure of this Innovative-Offense Boy?" asked Ultimate
	"Mr. Homage is a (*#@$^#in' criminal genius.  This is the only
*#@@#^$in' possible plan."  I-OBoy's face glowed with confidence.
	Kid Kirby stood up, his perspective distorting dramatically. 
"Legionnaires!  TO THE FLIGHT THINGIES!"

		===============		===============

	Hooded Ho`'od Win monitored the trouble alert.  She had been left
as part of the skeleton crew that didn't go to the Ice and Slice
Convention after the Brotherhood.  Abruptly, one of the front lawn
monitors kicked on, showing Ordinary Lady and Ultimate Ninja.  HHW
flicked on the external speakers, about to ask why they had returned
when UN launched a flying kick at the not-so-Ordinary Lady.  She pivoted
beneath it and flung a backhand strike that was barely blocked by a
flipping UN.
	<(Why on Earth are they fighting...?  I have speculated in the
past on...who`'od win.  Am I somehow causing this...?)>  Hood melted
into the shadows of the control room, reappearing outside in the shadows
of the LNHHQ.
	UN had drawn his Ginsu blade and had created a metallic blur about
Ordinary Lady.  Miraculously, she was parrying every one of his thrusts. 
Her Photographic Reflexes (TM) had been conditioned by many a UN fight
tape and she seemed to forecast his moves.
	<(Jean, UN, stop this!  This is not the Peril Room.  Someone will
get hurt.)>
	<[That, my dear, is the whole idea.]>
	Hooded Ho`'od Win spun, cloak flaring.  Levitating above the LNHHQ
was a cloaked, male form.  Beneath his hood a featureless silver faceplate
briefly reflected the afternoon sun.
	<(Hooded Ho`'od Win II!)>
	<[An ironic name, but yes.  It is I.  Look Hooded Ho`'od Win
'One,' are you not curious how this martial Contention will end?]>
	Hood's shrouded gaze returned to the combatants.  She agonizingly
paused.  Hood could see bloody flesh wounds on Ordinary Lady's athletic
body.  Whenever UN threw in a move OL had not seen before, he managed a
small slice.  OL would eventually lose, it was clear.  Even so, HHW2 did
not end the Contention.
	<(This is no Contention.  Ultimate Ninja is the source, she merely
copies his moves.  He will win.)>
	<[I am not so sure.]>  Though HHW2's voice indicated not only was
he sure, he didn't care.
	<(I won't let you kill them!)>  Hood levitated up, striking at the
Net.villain.  Her fist passed harmlessly through him.
	<[Silly girl.  You know as do I that nothing Looniversal may
prevent me viewing the outcome of this Contention.  You however, have no
such protection.]>  HHW2 struck out at his heroic counterpart, his blow
sending her plummeting to the LNHHQ roof.
	Simultaneously Ordinary Lady's katana flew from her grasp after a
particularly intricate bit of swordplay by the LNH's leader.  OL fell to
the ground exhausted and helpless.  HHW2 still did not end the
contention, even as UN raised the fabled Ginsu above his head.
	<(NO!  She will die!  Her only chance...She who must know Who`'od
Win demands the Contention of Doommonger and CAW!)>
	The silver faceplate flashed as HHW2 cocked his head.
	<[What's that?  Doommonger and CAW!?  Interesting...]>
	Hood sighed in relief.  Only by calling a more interesting
Contention did she distract the villain from the initial fight and save
OL's life.  Her sigh became anxiety as the air suddenly filled with
sound and fury.

		===============		===============

	At the Net.ropolis Ice and Slice Convention, Innovative Offense
Boy caught Ordinary Lady.  She had disappeared without explanation for
several minutes, then abruptly reappeared.  But she reappeared bloody
and battered and passed out in his arms.
	"@*#^$(!  JEAN!"
	Dr. Stomper ran up.  "I-OBoy!  Ultimate Ninja just reappeared,
then he passed out!  What's going on?  Have the Brotherhood attacked?"
	"You're *@#&!in' asking me for a *&@#$$@!^ explanation?!"
	Around them, diamonds glittered and fencers fenced.  And the LNH
grew more wary.  Frat Boy's voice pealed out from around the concession
stand.  "Great Gamma Tau Gammas!  Doommonger has dissappeared!"

		==============		===============

	A great section of the LNHHQ outer wall blew away as Doommonger
dodged CAW!'s explosive flechette grenades.
	"Save the Earth!  Save the Earth!" the big yellow robot sang as an
unbelievable amount of ordinance flew from him.  Doommonger had taken
several direct hits, and had grown more bloody in discrete amounts.  The
fact that he survived at all was damn impressive, nevermind the first
aid kits he drew from his transdimensional holster.  He had immediately
shifted up to his BFG2000, and the battlefield reeked of ozone.
	CAW! had lost a limb and bore several scorch marks, not to mention
a thrown track from his hull.  Aside for the occaisional "Ooh that
smarts," the robot gleefully pressed the attack.
	Another plasma ball streaked just past the robot.  "Great Global
Warming Batman!  He's killing the polar ice caps!"  CAW!'s rail gun
launched gumball machines at near-sound speed.  Several picture windows
in the LNHHQ shattered.
	<[Truly an interesting Contention, 1.  Infinite thanks for
introducing it.]>
	<(Now it appears you have slipped, 2.  For _I_ cannot be hurt
during this Contention.  You however...)>  As she spoke, HHW again
launched herself at HHW2 aiming a haymaker at his shiny faceplate.
	Again her fist passed through him.  <(How...?)>
	<[It seems I _also_ must know who`'od win.  CAW! or Doommonger.]> 
HHW2's voice contained mocking laughter.
	<(Then we are at a standstill.  If both need to know, neither of
us can be hurt.)>
	<[We can't, but they can.]>  HHW2 gestured to the battlefield
below.  Doommonger's BFG2000 had run out of charges, and he was pressing
the attack with a chain gun.  CAW! had at least four to return fire
with.  It was getting to the point where Doommonger could no longer draw
first aid kits fast enough.
	<(Damn you 2!  Even if I end the Contention, you will continue it
until one of them dies.  Very well.  She who must know Who`'od Win
demands the Contention of...Captain CAPITALIZE and Vulcana!)>

		===============		===============

	Innovative Offense Boy sprinted to the concession stand.  As he
arrived at Frat Boy's side, Doommonger reappeared, battered and bloody. 
He promptly passed out.
	"What the (!@*#$^?"
	"Got me, brother," said Frat Boy quickly hiding his beer.  "Has
the raid started?"
	"(#@#$in' maybe.  Check the *(@&!*&@#in' diamonds."  Bandwagon
Chick's voice rang out.
	"Captain CAPITALIZE was standing right next to me...!"
	I-OBoy rubbed his temple fiercely.  "What the (@*!#^# are you up
to Homage?"

		===============		===============

	"SHHHHAAAAAABLAM!"  Vulcana reeled from the blow, one wing bent at
a painful angle.  She hissed ferally.  Black fire flew from her long-
taloned fingers, engulfing the Capslock Crusader.
	"AAAAAAH!"  He screamed, causing Vulcana to grab her ears in
agony.  Another, "KABOOOOM" knocked great chunks from the LNHHQ, and
would have done worse to Vulcana if she hadn't used her good wing to
lever out of the way at the last minute.
	CAPITALIZE flew in close, pressing his advantage.  Too close. 
Vulcana abruptly whipped up her wounded wing.  It's razor-sharp edges
sliced the good Captain's side open.  He hissed in agony, unable to
catch his breath.  Black fire gathered in Vulcana's hands to finish the
	<(She who must know who`'od Win demands the Contention
of...Rotanna and Occultism Kid.)>
	<[1, you do me proud.  Another excellent Contention.]>  HHW glared
at him as both shifted to the new Contention.  As long as they both
drove the Contentions, they were as immune to Looniversal interference as
they were to the combatant's powers.
	<(I will wipe that smug from your voice, 2.  Mark my words.)>

		===============		===============

	Eldritch energies swirled about the LNHHQ.  The lawn burned in
numerous places, and neighboring blocks (long since evacuated in a well-
practiced drill for nearby commmunities) had expanses of brick turned to
lava.  The LNHHQ shuddered as swirling tendrils of power lanced through
	Occultism Kid had managed to cast a silence spell that broke
through Rotanna's defenses.  She squirmed helpless, her Rot13 magic
useless, as OK readied a demonic summoning.
	<(Enough!  She who must know Who`'od Win demands the Contention
of...Leviathan Lass and Johnny Stomper!)>
	<[I swear, 1.  You have an instinctive knack for this.]>
	<(Your time is coming, 2.)>
	The lawn erupted from below, as Johnny Stomper's robot ripped into
the daylight.  Balancing on the heaving turf, Leviathan Lass' features
flashed annoyance.  "A fight scene?  Sig.Lad's not cold in the ground and
I'm expected to do a fight scene?!  Give me a break."
	Johnny Stomper's giant robotic hand reached for LL's small form.  An
unsettling transformation turned the Occult Heroine into a huge, disturbing
lizard.  "She" met the robot's attack with ferocious strikes and eldritch
energy.  The first strike exposed circuitry along the robot's thigh, causing a
massive limp.  This strike was answered with mini-missiles that exploded
on and about the antediluvian evil. The explosions reflected off the blank
faceplate of HHW2.

		===============		===============

	"Now Occultism Kid gets (@#*$@$ and comes back bloody and *!@#$in'
out of it!  This is (@&**!#$in' weird."  Innovative-Offense Boy tapped
his communication thingie.  "Organic Lass.  We have five casualties to
pick up..."
	Over the open communication line, fierce explosions, thumps and
shatters could be heard.  "I-OBoy?  I can barely hear you.  The LNHHQ is
under attack -- they're bringing the place down around our ears!  We're
trying to save as much as we can but...."  Static filled the
Strategist's ears.
	"Was the (*!@#$%in' Ice and Slice a (!#@*$^#in' feint?  There's no
*(@&#$#in' way Homage could've predicted I'd *@#$*#in' guess this. 
*(#@$.  LEGIONNAIRES!  The (*@#$^in' LNHHQ is under (*#&!@#*&!*#@
attack!"  Innovative-Offense Boy's colorful call to arms forever tainted
the Ice and Slice's family atmosphere.

		===============		===============

	<[Sadly, the robot was only a boy inside.  I fear the Leviathan's
herald will devour him now.]>  Leviathan Lass stood on the prone robot's
chest, greedily ripping the metal from Johnny Stomper's cockpit.
	<(No.  She who must know Who`'od Win demands the Contention
of...Kid Kirby and CHEEEZARR!)>
	<[Ah, 1.  You've outdone yourself.  But where can you possibly go
from here?]>  HHW2 released Johnny Stomper and Leviathan Lass as the two
cosmic heroes appeared above the HQ.  A shock of power that collapsed
the HQ fully ten feet signalled the start of the cosmic battle.

	A formation of flight thingies roared back into LNH airspace in
time to see the first shock of the Power Kirby.  Those that looked
directly at it were blinded for minutes afterwards.
	I-OBoy leapt from the flight thingie as it landed, gesturing to
HHW(1).  The heroine levitated down to his side.  HHW2 disdainfully
watched her descend, but made no move to stop her.  The cosmic battle
commanded his, and the rest of the city's, attention.
	"What the (@*#&$@ is going on Hood?"
	<(HHW2 has been causing Contentions, intending them to fight to
the death.  I have had to increasingly up the odds to save the losers.)>
	"*#&$.  Then the Ice and Slice was never their *(&#$%^@in' plan
at all.  I don't *#&@in' get it.  Have any of the *(#$in' other
Net.Villains *&@#$@in' shown up?"
	<(Negative.  I don't know what they could do here that we haven't
done ourselves.)>  Hood gestured to the crumbling LNHHQ.  The damage was
prodigious.  The block, and especially the LNHHQ, looked like a war had
taken place.  Which, in a way, it had.
	Above their heads, an awesome yellow blast erupted from the Camembert
Coils on CHEEEZARR's wrists.
	"Fool!  You dare test the Wielder of the Power Kirby with this
mouldy jewelry?!"
	"Bah!  Kirbian, your powers pale before the limitless resources of
the Freonverse!"
	Despite the cosmic-rank bluster, both were taking and giving a
world-shattering amount of power.  The LNHHQ absorbed most of the power
thanks to the Kirbian failsafe devices within.  Unfortunately for the
LNHHQ, the devices could not handle the combined might of Kid Kirby and
CHEEEZARR.  Its already weakened ramparts shuddered menacingly.
	"*@#$% Hood.  We've got to *$#!in' stop this!  How do his
?&#$^$%?@# powers work?"
	<(He cannot be prevented seeing the Contention by any power in the
Looniverse, and he is immune to the powers of the Contenders...wait!  I-
OBoy, you've given me an idea!)>  Hooded H`'od Win (1) levitated up to
her villainous counterpart's side once again.
	<(She who Must Know needs to know Wh`'od Win betweeen Innovative-
Offense Boy and Fan.Boy -- in a profanity competition!)>
	Dry laughter echoed in HHW(1)'s mind.  <[I believe you have
finally lost it, 1.  As if such a Contention could draw me from the
cosmic battle above.]>
	Beneath her cloak, Hood smiled.
	As great forces smashed back and forth, rocking Net.ropolis, I-
OBoy squared off against the newcomer to the LNH on the rent lawn
	"You (@#$% @!#&^(@#$&@ !@&#($^& ^%&# $&(@# !#($&^ @$#%^"  Ears
bled, milk soured, and Dobermans turned on their masters at I-OBoy's words.
	Fan.Boy winced in disgust.  He answered with one word.  "*%@#."
	[At the spoken punctuation, everyone in the vicinity, including the
mutually beaten cosmic champions took pause, stunned.  This included the
writer, hence the bracketed narration.  Since Fan.Boy was not of the Loon-
iverse, his punctuation broke through HHW2's concentration.  Without the
Net.Villain's will the cosmic Contention faltered and Kid Kirby and CHEEEZARR
promptly disappeared.]
	[HHW(1) removed her hands from her ears.  Her hood and pressing
hands had kept her from hearing the stunning syllable. While everyone reeled
from Fan.boy's curse, HHW reared back and slugged HHW2.  Twice.  The second
blow shattered the silver faceplate.  For a brief instant, the flames licking
from the LNHHQ revealed HHW2's face to HHW(1).]
	<(No!  It can't be!)>  [The villain spilled over unconscious,
his hood again shrouding his features.  Hood was shaking as she levitated
him to the ground.]

		===============		===============

	The legionnaires started the slow process of piecing their HQ back
together after the myriad super-battles.  Naturally they extended that
courtesy to the surrounding neighborhoods (though resale value remained
unsurprisingly low).
	Ultimate Ninja spoke to I-OBoy and Ordinary Lady.  "So it wasn't
the Ice and Slice after all.  And you led the entire Legion on a wild
goose chase while the Brotherhood attacked _here_."
	OL, somehow striking despite the numerous bandages and bruises,
stood up for her partner.  "Just a minute, UN.  It was the best guess at
a plan we had to go on."
	"I just don't *@&#$^in' understand it.  If that wasn't
@#^%?$^in' it then there just isn't any #(*&$^in' explanation.  It's
almost like the Brotherhood has no ^@#$in' plan at all."  I-OBoy shook
his head in confusion, then he and Ordinary Lady walked away.

		===============		===============

	Hooded Ho`'od Win shivered on her bed.  She tried to convince
herself that what she had glimpsed beneath the villain's hood had been a
mistake.  But the image was too vivid and would not submit.  What did it

		===============		===============

	Mr. Homage (in disguise) sat on the other side of the visitor's
panel from HHW2.  Great klieg lights were trained on the hooded villain,
leaving no shadows for him to slip away into.  The Net.ropolis
Penitentiary wanted no chance of escape before HHW2 was shipped off to
the Safe.
	Mr. Homage's voice was cold and deadly.  "I'm torn between letting
you rot in prison and actually having someone kill you.  What in blazes
were you thinking, attacking the LNH directly?  Your orders were to turn
a profit, remember?  A PROFIT!  Give me one reason why I shouldn't kill you."
	A grey prison hood masked HHW2's features, but the hood's dark
mouth was pointed at Mr. Homage.  HHW2 slipped a rolled piece of paper
through the speaker-holes in the bulletproof glass.  Homage quickly
grabbed the note.  Mr. Homage unrolled the paper.  It was a sales
receipt for controlling interest in "Home Dep.alt," the building supply
store down the street from LNHHQ.
	Mr. Homage pondered aloud.  "A builder's supply?  So when the
LNH rebuilds its headquarters and the neighborhood...why they'll buy
thousands of dollars in construction equipment!  Tens of thousands!"
A slow smile spread across Mr. Homage's face.  "Not to mention the jump
in stock price after their purchase...HHW2 -- I take back all those nasty
things I said.  If the stock splits, we might even break you out of prison."

		===============		===============

	NET.VILLAINS continues in all your favorite late titles!

	NEXT:  Fallout from the CATALYTIC CONVERSIONS storyline _I_
		can't even predict.  And perhaps, just perhaps, the long-
		overdue story debut of an old villain.

		Coming in August.

		===============		===============
Triple Players:

	Hooded Ho`'od Win II....via Drizzt
	Rumour Monger...........via Drizzt
	Lobdell Lad.............via Drizzt

	Hooded Ho`'od Win.......on loan from wReam
	Innovative Offense Boy..via Public Domain
	Ordinary Lady...........via Martin
	Ultimate Ninja..........wReam
	Doommonger..............Patrick Gearman
	CAW!....................via Badger
	Vulcana.................Patricia Wright
	Occultism Kid...........Josh Geurink
	Rotanna.................via Dave Van Domelen
	Leviathan Lass..........via Paul Hardy
	Johnny Stomper..........via Josh Geurink
	CHEEEZARR...............Kyle Lucke
	Kid Kirby...............Jameel al Khafiz
	Fan.Boy.................Jamas Enright

	gads, and there's tons more to boot...

special thanks to:  The DeBeers Consortium and the American Fencing
	Association for generous loan of red herring, and to the
	EEPSIODSers for signing onto this ill-considered thing in the
	first place.  Especially Martin, who should get co-writer credit
	for this issue.


Arthur "Same Classic Channel.  But Same Time?  Probably not." Spitzer

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