SG-1996: (5/5) Reflections Refracted

Eric Burns sabre at
Tue Mar 28 14:39:06 PDT 2017

[Start of Part Five]

     Random Encounters, his features twisted with rage, looked back and
forth at the Mob. "You think you've won!" he shouted. "You think this is
     "Well, yeah," Roger/Melody said. "Pretty sure you're done."
     "*Well* done," Hellfire said, flames gathering around her fist.
     "My field is still up, and your flashlight's passed back out! And if
you haven't figured it out yet -- I *always* have a back--" He fumbled a
bit with his pockets. "Hang on."
     "Do we have to?" Mighty Dog asked.
     "Yes! Come on -- I burnt my hand when the gun melted -- it's going to
take a couple-- YES!" He brought out a glimmering star amythest gem as big
as his palm, holding it high in the air, its triacontahedron faces
glittering in the light!
     "A *thirty sider?*" Mental said. "Are you kidding me?!"
     "Go ahead -- throw it," Roger/Melody said. "You don't have room in
that field for it, and we'll just trash it like we did the rest!"
     "Oh, I'm sure you would, if I were kind enough to throw it *at* you.
But this die *hardly* needs to be in the same *room!* So if my field is
between you and *it...* And so saying, he literally threw the gem over his
shoulder, out through the shattered window behind him, out onto the lawn.
     "No!" Hellfire shouted, diving forward, even as Roger/Melody did too--
     The die arced out and down, hitting the lawn with a flare, the magic
taking effect, rolling... rolling....
     "Maybe it'll land on-edge in the grass!" Mental said "Those don't
count, do they?"
     Sadly, there was no chance to find out, as the die settled, the number
23 gleaming towards the sky. Because of course it was a 23.
     The Dash blurred in, saying something incomprehensible--
     With a thunderclap that threatened to split the heavens, purest violet
energy resolved into gleaming scales, burning eyes and fiery mouth looking
down from heights taller than the entire mansion. With a roar, the ancient
Amethyst Dragon reared back, its fury and power unmatched by anything they
had yet seen.
     The Dash stared for a picosecond, then blurred out, circling the beast
and hitting it hundreds of times -- blows which barely seemed to hurt the
     "She can't stop it!" Random Encounters shouted. "*None* of you can
stop it!"
     "*Dangerousgirl!*" Mental shouted across the room.
     The brunette's eyes were open but not focused. " come on Lars I
don' wanna go to the Academy today...."
     "Mighty Dog?" Hellfire asked.
     " -- blast it all! I've not anywhere near the strength!"
     Roger/Melody cast hurredly, rising into the air, purple and gold rose
imagry bearing the merged entity aloft, Hellfire blazing afterward. Mime
Man began hurriedly miming barriers to protect the room -- if such were
even possible.
     Mental tried to run forward, but his feet gave out.
     "*Best Friend!*" Mighty Dog shouted, limping to Mental.
     "Can't... too much blood loss--"
     "You'll lose the rest of it now, Ward!" Random Encounters laughed.
     "You'll die too!" Mental shouted back.
     "So what?" Random Encounters said with a laugh. "So long as you brats
go, I'll die smiling!"
     Mental closed his eyes, trying to summon his strength. Hellfire, Roger
-- or Roger/Melody... he wasn't sure what was up there -- were strong but
not strong enough. Even with the Dash....
     They couldn't lose *now!*


     The woman's silver foot jammed into the ground, *finally.* The impact
created the feedback pulse which then created the force to fling her up and
out. Reflects landed on her feet, leaning forward, sliding frictionlessly
but moving her arms like a speed skater, shooting towards the mansion. She
saw what looked like a dragon on the other side of the building, but in the
end did not care. She was moving fast, now -- faster than she ever had. She
didn't think about anything but getting into the building. She had to save
Sensation. She had to kill the Mob. There was *nothing else left.*


     Roger/Melody landed and stayed close to the ground, golden mystic
razor sharp petals flying out into the air and slashing into the beast,
which barely seemed to notice. Hellfire burned searing blasts it didn't
care about either, even as the Dash ran into the building then smashed out
a third floor window, slamming into the thing's neck at Mach 4.
     It wasn't immune to damage, but it clearly was so powerful they'd
never do enough, even as it raked at Hellfire, dispersing her briefly. They
could tell it was building up its energies for a powerful breath weapon
attack, no doubt against the mansion itself. And any other day it would be
repulsed, but with everyone so weakened--
     The clouds were thick overhead, as though the rain were about to burst
from them, as it reared back, its wings spread, its mighty lungs drawing in
     Behind it, high above the cloud layer, a piercing whistling sound
could be heard. It didn't distract the dragon until it got much louder...
but before it could turn a missile burst from the clouds and slammed into
the thing's neck, followed by a second, a third, a fourth, a fifth, each
one exploding and causing the beast to *roar* in pain--
     "What?!" Random Encounters screamed.
     From the clouds came the streak of a silver jet -- no, a *Veritech* --
in full supersonic mode, tearing at the beast and unleashing its arsenal,
looking like it would crash into it until it got just close enough, then
seemed to split, converting into full robot mode, angling as blasts and
ordnance fired from its system, hitting *again* and *again* and *again.*
There technically didn't need to be a face in its pilot's dome -- so the
fire haired woman sweeping like a valkyrie was all style. "*LEAVE* *MY*
*FRIENDS* *ALONE!*" Summer screamed, voice amplified as she completed an
attack run at full bore.
     "Yes!" Roger/Melody shouted, bringing their power to bear as well,
even as the Dash followed up with her own attacks along the beast's flank
and Hellfire practically went nova in an assault. "Keep up the pressure!"
     "It's not enough!" Summer shouted. "PHOBOS! I NEED GUN MODE!" The
Hardsuited Heroine then threw herself bodily at Roger/Melody.
     "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!" Roger/Melody shouted.
     Inside the mansion, a hazel eye gleamed, seeing the woman, and knowing
what she could be--
     Twisting, with metal and plastic seemingly recombining over and over
again, Summer collapsed down into a single sidearm, which Roger/Melody
almost by accident caught, spinning halfway around. "What the--" the merged
magi said--
     "*SHOOT!*" Summer shouted.
     Roger/Melody blinked, grinned, brought the gun to bear and *fired.*
All the potential energy locked within Summer's nanite body was focused
into a blast that slammed *through* the dragon, which reared back,
     Roger/Melody fired again. And again. And *again.*
     Shrieking with pain and rage, the dragon boiled back into violet
     "*Yes!*" Mental shouted, wincing with pain as he said it.
     Roger/Melody's gaze fixed on the thirty-sided die still sitting on the
lawn. They didn't have their disruptive spell ready again, but Summer's gun
mode was so powerful....
     With a grim smile they fired. The silver white light overwhelmed the
violet energies and the gem exploded like a grenade.
     "Perfect!" Roger/Melody shouted.
     "Great shot!" Summer shouted back. "But practice better trigger
discipline, please!"
     "The... uh... you're still holding the trigger. That's... um...."
     Flushing *hard,* Roger/Melody tossed the gun up and away from them,
letting it resolve back into Summer's human form.
     "Let's *end* this," Hellfire said, sweeping back into the building,
Roger/Melody, Summer and the Dash in tow. Well, okay, the Dash beat them
there, but still.


     Random Encounters looked to every side as the Mob closed ranks. Mighty
Dog had made it to all fours, and was growling. Mental had made it back to
his feet, leaning on the Mightiest Dog Around. The Dash was buzzing from
one side of the room to the other. Mime Man had his hands poised like a
kata. Hellfire burned in the air above him. Roger/Melody had run in to
check Dangerousgirl, and managed to rouse her just enough. And Summer had
just finished a check of her own, turning and morphing into hardsuit mode.
Only Healer, Momentum and Dreamweaver were still immobile, and one got the
sense that they could 'see' everything going on.
     "You think you've won," he said. "But I know all your secrets! All of
them! Every painful truth and admission and weakness! And you *still* can't
get through my Field of External Denial! So this is just the beginning,
Mob! Do you hear me?!"
     "You saw what my Gun Mode can do," Summer said, striding forward. "Do
you seriously think your *field* can stop that?"
     "Probably not," Random Encounters said, grinning smugly. "But if you
use it, you'll also kill me in the bargain. And are you *really* going to
gun down a man in cold blood?"
     "You hurt the man I love! You hurt my friends! And you *HURT MY
DAUGHTER!* What do you *think* I'm gonna do?!"
     Roger/Melody looked thoughtful. "This is where we'd normally talk her
down, right?"
     "Yeah," Hellfire said. "Weirdly? I'm not feeling it."
     "...speaking of that I feel terrible...." Dangerousgirl said.
     }{Summer--}{ Healer's telepathic voice said.
     "What, Healer? *What?*"
     }{Be sure.}{
     Summer's lip set--
     Several turned to look at the new voice, then double-took. "Wha--"
     He was a man, but his skin was red leather, crusting, waves of reddish
energy steaming off him. Suddenly Dangerousgirl, Roger/Melody and even
Summer twisted, burning and itching filling their senses.
     "Sensation?" Hellfire asked, aghast. "I didn't hit you nearly hard
     "Random Encounters!" Sensation screamed again. "I need -- I need a
booster... or something! HELP ME!"
     Random Encounters's smile had faded, and he shook his head slightly.
"Sorry," he said. "This always happens. I really don't know why."
     "Every time I give someone superpowers... they end up dying. Usually
horribly. I thought I had it this time but I guess not." He shrugged.
"That's the way the die bounces. Of all my empowered... only Matchstick and
Reflects survived."
     "Oh my God," Mental murmured.
     "You... you can't... no... NO!!!!" The man screamed, his already
shredded vocal cords constricting as the very skin and muscle of his body
contracted, a wave of sheer pain sweeping over all in the room until all
that was left was a blood red skeleton, which fell to the floor, even its
clothing burned away. Cold. Unmoving.
     At the edge of the room, nude and shining silver, Reflects stared at
     "Are you still *here?*" Random Encounters spat. "How needy *are* you."
     With a primal roar of despair, Reflects kicked off the wall, shooting
forward frictionlessly, bowling Dangerousgirl, Roger/Melody and Summer out
of her way as she slid for Random Encounters. She hit the Field of External
Denial, but as with everything else it splayed off her field, completely
unfelt. She slammed her fist into the heavy man's stomach, then struck him
across the face, again and again. "YOU KILLED HIM!" she screamed, crying.
"YOU KILLED HIM YOU BASTARD!" She struck again and again, with the others
cut off from interfering by the same field that Random Encounters used.
     In the thoughtscape where Momentum was hold Samantha and her children
out of the pit, anchored by Healer and connected by Mental, the three
heroines stared as the former Mirror Maid lost all reason, clearly on the
verge of killing Random Encounters.
     }{Maria!}{ Healer shouted. }{PLEASE! Listen!}{
     ((She can't hear you,)) Samantha said. ((Timothy... be strong.))
     //What--\\ Mental asked--
     The telepath shivered, slumping with a sudden strain, as the dreamform
of the Dreamqueen of the Realm Nocturne manifested, twenty feet tall in all
her glorious, beautiful, imperial majesty. "*REFLECTS!*" she demanded.
     The silver woman, startled, stumbled back -- slipping frictionlessly
on the floor and trying to keep her footing. "S-Sam? Samantha?" she said...
as though waking from a dream.
     Or falling into a nightmare.
     "You don't call me *EITHER* of those!" the Dreamqueen shouted, her
voice a thousand howls of nightmare. "You call me *Dreamweaver!* Now
     Maria jerked slightly, before slumping to the floor, a silver pool of
a girl flowing frictionlessly across the room.
     "...Samantha?" Roger/Melody asked, but the illusion was gone.
     "Does she even *have* that power?" Summer asked, softly. "To put
people to sleep?"
     Mime Man shrugged.
     "Perhaps it was Healer or Mental or even Momentum that supplied that
bit," Mighty Dog said. "Or perhaps we just don't know." He paused. "Is it
     Mental slumped against Mighty Dog. "Yeah," he said, managing to ruffle
the injured dog behind the ears. "It's over."
     Dangerousgirl swallowed, hitting her Xolchacomm. "JOEL?" she asked.
     «Doctor Unstable is in custody here, and Jenny's okay -- recovering
and in sleep mode, but okay.»
     "Good. We need medevac. Crash priority. Do we have Xolchaportation
     «Well... not that I'd let a *friend* use. It's a bit rough around the
edges. But as far as help goes?»
     There was a streak at near-impossible speed from the West, slamming
into the ground with a truly Mighty Landing. "Mighty Dog?" Mighty Guy
demanded. "*Charlie?!*"
     The cloud cover was swept aside again, this time by the M.E.C.H.A.
Jet, Mike at the controls as he brought it down for a landing.
     From a different angle, a very different craft broke the clouds, its
gleaming Awesomanteum envelope granting the airship a beauty and grace
rarely seen. "Attention, anyone who's a bad guy," Damian Wilson's voice
echoed over the terrain. "This is Awesome Force One. Lie down with your
hands over your head or suffer the wrath of some very angry people in here.
I'd go with option A."
     «I think we have you covered,» JOEL said, somewhat smugly.
     " do at that," Dangerousgirl said, leaning on Roger/Melody. "You
do at that."
The Airship descended as did the M.E.C.H.A. Jet, Mighty Guy moving to make
sure the various captured speedsters didn't cause trouble as the camera
pulled back, looking at the smoke rising from the mansion. Damaged, but not
Never destroyed.
Once upon a time there was a tragedy.
I never said this was it.


Well, the last one's easy. Yes, there's one more post -- a little less
apocalyptic -- to follow... and you'll find it on SUPERGUY! Eventually.

                  Post Notes, credits and writing process
          found at

                                *** *** ***

               Special thanks to Gary W. Olson, Matt Gerber,
                       Chris Angelini, Chris Meadows
                              and John Bankert

   Mason's Mazin' Mob, Phobos, Mental, Mighty Dog, Mime Man, Dreamweaver,
Doctor Watt and Random Encounters Created by Mason L. Kramer, used by

             Jenny created by Mason L. Kramer and Chris Meadows

                      Healer created by Gary W. Olson

       Momentum, Reflects, Melody Pernicious, and Hellfire created by
                              Mason L. Kramer

         Summer, Mike and Team M.E.C.H.A. created by Chris Meadows
                           and used by permission

   Mighty Guy created by Eric Burns-White, used by (admittedly implicit)
                        permission of Gary W. Olson

     Damian Wilson and the Awesome Force created by a bunch of people,
   but let's say Dominic White and William R. Dickson for the heck of it,
                     also used by implicit permission.

            Dangerousgirl, the Dash, Memorex, Frigid Girl, JOEL
                   and the Adjusted League Unimpeachable
                        created by Eric Burns-White
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