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[Finale] The Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny

#1
Quote:Word Limit: 2000
Posts: 1
Time Limit: "Call System"
Random Elements: On
Damage Meter: Off

Time limit starts at 8 AM CDT on September 13th, 2018. All contestants must post two posts before Sunday, September 23rd, 2018.

“Cataclysm”

The six consolation teams find themselves teleported back to the pre-show facility.

However, it quickly becomes clear that the situation is fucked beyond all measures. People are panicking, stuff is falling apart, and there seems to be no escape due to faulty teleporters. A message on the PA system calmly requests people to report to the hanger bay and the 'life shuttles' that await them. The same calm message reports decreased functionality of life shuttles (so you figure out the rest).

The six must overcome the chaos of the crowds and the crumbing facility to reach the shuttle/hanger bay, where they will find Zedd and Violet have secured the area already and are prepping to leave with the pair of remaining shuttles.
[Image: KarlSig.jpg]
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#2
As soon as Kenpachi and Mickey left Yuuka to her own devices, it became clear Dante’s Abyss wasn’t getting any easier.

The floor of the preshow facility trembled as he and the shinigami reentered the lobby. Around them, the various LED screens began to snap off their hinge. Not a second later, the tile floor cracked and began to crumble, and Mickey Mouse tripped and fell to his knees.

“Woahhhh!”

He wobbled, slowly rising. “Ummmm—Kenny—what’s happenin’?”

“Unclear, Mick,” the ninja scowled, taking his sword and slamming it into the ground. He grasped hard on the hilt to hold himself in place, and then snatched Mickey up by the collar. “But I’ve got a feeling we’re going to find out.”

The lights in the facility began to flash bright red, and the speakers blared a loud, obnoxious alarm, and then almost immediately the silky smooth voice of Karl Jak chimed in over the PA.

“Attention, remaining contestants and unlucky spectators,” he half-giggled, “in case you haven’t noticed, this place is heading for the birds. Escape shuttles in the hanger bay—but there aren’t many. And just to make it fun, only one of the remaining teams is allowed to take one! The rest of you go down with the ship!”

Karl Jak’s annoying cackle rang out through the speaker system. Mickey and Kenpachi shared a worried look.

Mickey gulped. Had Blues gotten out?

“May the odds be ever in your favor, bitches!”

“Dagnabbit.”

Kenpachi swung Mickey into the air and began to sprint down the main hallway of the facility. He unsheathed his keyblade and landed—with the type of impeccable balance he’d become known for—on his partner’s shoulders, holding on to Kenny’s unnaturally spiky hair for balance.

“Um, ouch,” the warrior protested.

“Sorry, pal!” Mickey shrugged, swinging his weapon and batting a piece of falling debris away. The slab of ceiling stone sailed across the expanse of the corridor, coming to a sudden stop against a person’s face.

“Fuuuuck,” the female voice exclaimed, clutching her face and looking up. Mickey glanced back to see that he’d accidentally batted a chunk of the ceiling into the face of the no-named Bandit.

His eyes narrowed. If she was here…

“Hold, please, Kenny!” he shouted, back-flipping off his partner. Kenpachi tried to protest, but he’d already headed off.

The Bandit clutched her forehead, blinking a few times. Her blurry vision refocused just in time to see a tiny, anthropomorphic mouse pop up. “Yo, Mick—” she started, but before she could finish, Mickey Mouse leapt onto her chest and held his keyblade to her neck.

Where is she?” the mouse growled.

“Where is who? The fuck, Mick, you know that thing hurts—”

“Your partner, Butt Kicker,” Mickey replied with a scowl, “the one who killed Kanda.” The Bandit glanced up at the mouse who’d pinned her to the ground.

“Oh, Kerri?” she pointed, “Right behind you, bud.”

Mickey’s eyes went wide and he spun around just in time to see Sarah Kerrigan’s wing blade swipe at his face. He stepped back, stumbling off the Bandit and onto his butt.

“So you did survive,” Kerrigan hissed, yanking the Bandit off the ground.

“I’m hard to get rid of, pal,” Mickey scowled.

Tell me about it,” an all-too familiar voice rang in Mickey’s ear as a foot slammed onto his tail. If the mouse could’ve gone pale, he would have, but instead he simply glanced up at the source of the voice to see a spandex clad merc-with-a-mouth staring down at him. Behind him stood a scrawny man with a blue cloak, arms crossed.

Miss me?” Deadpool chuckled.

And just like that, he was sailing across the lobby of the preshow facility, rolling across the ground a victim of one of Deadpool’s boots. He landed, quite unceremoniously, beneath one of the cracking palm trees, and looked up, watching as a ball of yellow energy slammed into the trunk. The tree crumbled, tumbling down to crush the tiny mouse beneath its weight. Mickey closed his eyes and braced for impact, but it never came.

He opened his eyes. Deadpool stood over him, shouldering the weight of the tree. He heaved it safely to the ground. “No way, creepy bitch,” the merc shouted, wagging a finger in Kerrigan’s direction. “The Murdermouse is my kill!

“And he’s my partner,” Kenpachi Zaraki shouted, crashing into Deadpool and tackling him to the ground. Erik dropped into a fighting stance and summoned two violet-colored blades, charging the shinigami and allowing the former musketeer to slide away from the scuffle and begin a sprint toward Kerrigan.

Deadpool wrestled against Kenpachi’s grip as the warrior assaulted his face with punches, lifting a blade simultaneously to deflect Erik’s swipes.

No—no, Erik—get the fucking mouse!” the foul-mouthed superhero shouted.

But Mickey was already halfway across the lobby, slamming his keyblade into the ground and flipping into the air, flying gracefully toward the pair of women. The Bandit slid in between the mouse and her partner and brought up a hand, catching the mouse by the ear and stopping his descent. Kerrigan scoffed, and one of her hands began to grow bright yellow.

“Your heroics will get you nowhere, rodent,” she growled.

“Being evil will get you into even less places, lady!” Mickey spat back.

Kerrigan blinked. “Less than… nowhere?”

The Bandit quirked an eyebrow. “Yeah, Mick, that doesn’t make sense—”

“Enough,” the Queen of Blades snapped. She placed her hand on Mickey’s face and squeezed, and the mouse—along with the no-named marauder attached to him—lifted in the air, then quickly slammed back into the ground. The tile floor of the preshow facility, already cracking because of whatever force seemed to be tearing the Dante Verse apart, buckled beneath the weight of the two primes, and Mickey Mouse and the Bandit with No Name disappeared into the new dark, foreboding crater.

* * *

Deadpool stared down Kenpachi, who’d somehow managed to grapple Erik into a chokehold. The shinigami’s blade pressed against the young man’s throat as the merc found himself faced with an unusually difficult moral dilemma.

Chase the mouse, save my partner?” he mused aloud as Erik Vrell squirmed beneath Kenpachi’s grip. The superhero darted over to where the palm tree had stood before Kerrigan maimed it, and plucked a little flower from the ground. He ripped off the petals one by one, muttering his choices as he did so. “Chase the mouse, save my partner, chase the mouse, save my partner… ?

Kenpachi scowled. This was the type of scum they were expected to fight against? He had half a mind to leave them all behind, find Mickey, and run for the shuttles. They weren’t worthy of his effort.

Deadpool’s big, white eyes turned to the shinigami. One petal remained. He plucked it.

Save my partner.

Kenpachi tossed Erik aside as Deadpool’s twin katanas spun towards him.

* * *

“Mick!! Get back here!!”

The Bandit’s voice rung throughout the underground chasms of the preshow facility. The pair of pals had somehow plummeted into the plumbing systems of the Dante Verse. Mickey clambered quickly through the pipes, until finally he reached one that went up.

He climbed skillfully up towards the bright light at the top, then aimed his keyblade and shot a fireball, destroying the toilet that blocked his path. He clambered into the stall and went to open the door when Sarah Kerrigan’s slimy feet clicked into earshot.

“Mouse?” she called from just outside the door. “Bandit?”

As if on cue, Butt Kicker popped up in the hole behind Mickey, and before she could speak and give them away, a gloved hand clasped over her mouth. The Bandit let out a muffled protest, but her partner didn’t seem to hear.

“No matter,” Kerrigan shrugged, slinking out of the bathroom, “I’ll find you soon enough.” And with that, the Queen of Blades disappeared back into the main hall.

Mickey released the Bandit, and she burst from the stall, ostensibly after her partner.

“Butt Kicker,” the king squeaked in the most whispery voice he could muster, stopping the Bandit. “You can’t actually be seriously still working with that lady. She’s, like… pure evil.”

“Kerri?” the Bandit quirked an eyebrow. “Nah, she’s cool. This ain’t that serious, Mick.”

“Not serious?” Mickey blinked. “She ripped Kanda’s throat out!”

“Just part of the deal, bud,” she shrugged. “He’s a prime, he’ll be fine. Back at the Fountain any day now!”

She bent her knees and lifted her fists into a fighting stance.

“Care to join him?”

With a hearty chortle, the Bandit with No Name lunged for Mickey Mouse. The diminutive prime dove beneath her fisticuffs and scrambled toward the door. The long-armed marauder grabbed him by the scruff of his neck fur and lifted him into the air.

“What’s the matter, Mick?” she asked, honestly curious. “Why are you trying to run instead of fight?”

Mickey scowled. “Because this is useless,” he shouted, thoughts of staying quiet abandoned. “I don’t wanna fight you! You’re my friend!”

The Bandit frowned. The mouse felt his frustration rising. Kerrigan and Deadpool deserved every bit of punishment they got in this match, but did he care enough to give it to them? He had half a mind to just find Kenny and head for the shuttles. Did he even need to give Dante’s Abyss the satisfaction of finishing it out?

He looked the Bandit in the eye. She’d been a good friend these past few days, despite coming up against him several times, physically and philosophically, and being paired up with the actual scum of the Omniverse.

“Butt Kicker,” Mickey said, grasping the Bandit by the shoulders, “you and me. To the shuttles. Let’s get out of here before it’s too late.”

“You really don’t wanna fight?”

Mickey shook his head.

“Alright,” she sighed, tossing the mouse on her shoulders. “I’ll get you to the shuttles. I ain’t coming with because I love shit like this, but if you don’t wanna fight, you don’t have to.”

The woman placed her hand on the bathroom doorknob just as the entire wall was blasted to bits.

Mickey and the Bandit were knocked back, landing on their butts, staring up at the scowling mug of Sarah Kerrigan.

“Geez, Kerri, watch the friendly fire!” the Bandit massaged her head.

The Queen of Blades ignored her partner, stalking towards the mouse. Behind her, Mickey saw Deadpool see him and break away from his scuffle with Kenny and Erik. Kerrigan grabbed him by his throat and lifted him into the air.

“Your heroics are over, Mickey Mouse,” she squeezed the mouse’s throat.

“You’re wrong,” he choked, holding out an arm. He closed his eyes as crimson red armor flew seemingly from nowhere and wrapped around his wrist. He placed the palm of his now armored hand on Sarah Kerrigan’s face and launched a repulsor blast.

The bolt of energy blew her backward. Mickey hovered in the air as more armor attached to his body. Beneath the new mask, he smiled.

“My heroics are just beginning.”

It all began with just him and an Iron Man glove. No better way to end it than to reclaim that weapon and blast these suckers away.

Kerrigan clutched her charted face, fuming. The Bandit stared up at him, slightly dumbfounded. Deadpool stopped in his tracks.

Are you dressed like Iron Man right now?

“More like Iron Mickey!” the mouse grinned, blasting into the air.

Yeah, that’s super dumb!” Deadpool yelled up at him. “I’m not calling you that!

“Yeah, well, you’re an ass,” Mickey barked.

The Iron Mouse swooped toward Kenpachi, zooming down and lifting him up by his shoulders. “Took you long enough,” the shinigami chuckled. “So what now?”

“We get to the shuttles, Kenny,” Mickey resolved as they passed over the other four remaining competitors. “But maybe first… we take out the trash?”

Kenpachi smirked, and nodded. “Oh, now I like the sound of that.”

The mouse released his grip on the man, letting him fall back into the battle, then nosedived back into the fray.

Quote:Mickey used Tier 1 Powered Up Form Iron Mickey for the whole round.

1999/2000 words.

Good show y’all!!
[Image: 2agonyw.png]
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#3
I guess it’s time for you to hate me again
Let’s begin, now hand me a pen
How should I begin it and where does it all end?
The world is just my medicine ball, you’re all in




Sirens screaming, people panicking. Ceilings crumbling, floors fissuring. Power out, lights off. Generators activate, lights flicker back on. An automated message played on repeat, barely audible as the sounds of ruckus were washing over it: “May I have your attention please--may I have your attention please. This is an evacuation message. Please proceed to the hanger bay.”

Pandemonium.

But none of the chaos rattled Deadpool. To him this was just another finale--same cake, different frosting. Over the years, he had become a Dante’s Abyss savant, reaching sage status amongst his peers. He was prepared for anything. Even if Jason barreled through either of the corridor’s walls, that marsh-faced, aquaphobic fuck would have a clip full of lead in him before he could raise his machete, and a katana shoved between his legs before he could collapse to the terrazzo floor, to drown in a swamp of his own gore.

So when Mickey Mouse decided to rejoin to the fray, the mercenary wasn’t surprised. It merely solidified his perception of Mickey. . . the mouse was no hero. Heroes rarely went on vengeance campaigns, and when they did, they didn’t create a catalog of excuses afterward to satisfy their own self-delusions, nor did they plummet amicable domains into years of interregnum, just to abandon the rebuilding process prematurely. The disney mascot had gone from heroic character to a caricature of blind heroism. It was a descent almost ninety years overdue.

”Look alive, Erik,” Deadpool hollered. ”The Omniverse’s false messiah has returned!”

The cultist pulled himself from the ground. He momentarily favored his left shoulder, but soon ignored the pain. “This facility won’t hold much longer,” he said. “I think we should head for the shuttles.”

Deadpool turned back to his partner, a smile creasing his mask. ”You’re right,” he replied, you should head for the shuttles. I’m gonna stay back and enjoy this little narrative that’s been building.”

Erik nodded, not at all dazed by the mercenary’s revelation. “You’re going for the mouse,” he said matter-of-factly.

“Oh, it’s deeper than that,” the mercenary replied. “Yes, I want to fight Mickey, but I’ll save that dialogue for him.” He raised a balled fist to his face and growled. “The truth is, Dante’s Abyss is my legacy in the Omniverse. And unlike most contestants that have entered this event, I’ve never turned my back on someone who needed me. I’m no hero, but I have my own code of morals that I hold myself to--it’s why I have so many fans.

I want you to focus your energy on saving as many of the young Secondaries as possible, then get yourself the fuck outta here.”

“May I ask why?” Erik said.

”Those young fans put us on pedestals,” Deadpool replied. “It’d be a shame if they died because their idols were too selfish and bloodthirsty to even acknowledge their existence.

Now go. I’ll keep these guys busy. They don’t deserve to survive this finale--none of them deserve to be legends of the Abyss.”

Erik nodded. “I understand,” he replied. “Behind that red and black mask and beyond all the antics, there is a layered man worthy of the highest respect. May the Gods watch over you, Deadpool.”

The mercenary chuckled. ”Please, call me Wade.”

“I shall call you my brother in arms,” the cultist corrected.

Two warriors--from two entirely different backgrounds, cultures, and practices--locked eyes. Their mutual respect for one another beamed through the haze of drywall dust and permeated. Then Erik dashed off.

With a purpose, the mercenary turned ahead, and charged into the clusterfuck. His eyes were on the mouse; no amount of stoic anime characters, horde controllers, or illiterate nameless bitches could stop him. The narrow corridor was a perfect space for Deadpool to best utilize his close-quarters-combat prowess, and he knew for a fact that no one in this finale matched his technical abilities (it wasn’t even fucking close). He unsheathed both of his katanas as he neared, dragging them across what was left of the cracking terrazzo floor, sparks flying behind the.

An upward slash of his right katana interposed itself between Bandit and Kenpachi. Both of them separated their clashing weapons--sword and hammer--and pinned themselves against opposite walls to avoid the barreling mercenary.

The paint on Bandit’s face distorted into a malicious skull as she watched the mercenary blow by them. “What gives interrupting my fun?! I thought you were the fun guy!” she sqwuaked, her voice plagued from years of smoking.

”Sorry female Skeletor,” Deadpool replied, ”I got a date with a faux-hero!”

Ahead, he could see midget Ironman Mickey immersed in an intense fight with a creature that appeared to be a an offspring of Sigourney Weaver and an alien from the movie Alien (Not that offspring, boys and girls--dear god, no). The armored rodent hovered in the air with his hands extended towards Kerrigan, spheres of energy screaming from his palms, striking her at point blank range. The befallen woman convulsed like jittery crackhead doing the harlem shake as the blasts bounced her against wall continuously.

”Mickey!!!!” the mercenary roared, sheathing his blades. ”Hot-diggity-dog, mothafucker!”

Deadpool pounced, tackling the unsuspecting rodent in midair. The pair crashed to the ground and rolled across the floor, limbs tangling as both of them tried to gain positioning on the other. Deadpool wound up on top.

He pinned the smaller Mickey’s back to the terrazzo and grabbed him around the neck with his left hand. ”Thought you were just gonna leave me with that snobby liberal line, huh--you’re an ass . . . seriously?? It didn’t even have any emotion behind it!” His right fist drove into Mickey’s plated mask; one of the illuminated eye sockets went black. ”Well, at least we know you’re not broadway material!”

He released his hand from Mickey’s neck to deliver a subsequent left, but before it could land, a flash of lightning lit the hallway up. The shaft of lightning came down from the ceiling like an electric javelin thrown by God, booming over the cacophony of chaos, as it bashed into Deadpool, launching him airborne. The mercenary flew backwards, his body punching a hole through the wall to the right. He came out the other side, violently skipping across the floor. Chairs were knocked over, tables were flipped, and glass flagons were shattered into countless pieces.

”You shoulda just purchased the Mjolnir,” Deadpool murmured while pulling himself up. Mickey’s attack created a nice spectacle, but did next to nothing in terms of damage. The mercenary’s hair barely stood from the sudden jolt.

“If you want a pointless fight, you got one pal!” Mickey roared.

He rocketed through the hole in the wall, summoning his keyblade to swing at the mercenary. Deadpool immediately unsheathed a katana, and parried the blow with a deflection. Cling, clang, cling their weapons sang with each collision. Despite the weight of the Ironman suit, Mickey managed to retain enough nimbleness to flip and cartwheel around while still sustaining an offensive. Slightly overwhelmed by the mouse’s speed, Deadpool was forced to backpedal as he defended. The sharpness of his technique kept him afloat, but only by the crown of his head.

Think fast, Wade, the mercenary said to himself. Then the idea hit him.

”So, do Disney characters have nuts, or are they nonexistent for children sake?”

Before Mickey could even process the question, one of Deadpool’s legs whipped out, catching the mouse between the legs. His boot landed against the suit’s crotch-plate with a hardly audible thud, but the squeal it solicited was clearly audible. The keyblade fell from Mickey’s grasp as he reached both hands over his genitals. His legs wiggled like worms, then buckled, collapsing him to both knees.  

”You, talking about pointless fights?” Deadpool scoffed. ”Coming from the man who claims to be about non-violence, then throws himself into any conflict that is justifiable. You’re so hellbent on revenge right now that you’ve lost your hero ways. Though I’m not surprised, because you lose your way every chance you get. But that’s not what irritates me about you Mickey. No, my hatred for you is a lot simpler.

You act like you’re some sort of savior of the universe, only looking at things through the scope of your own very limited perception; you’re quick to label things good or evil--black or white--when more often than not, things and situations are much more complex; and you abuse your power to craft the world in your own distorted image, where everything is peaches and goddamn rosemary. For what Mickey--for fucking what? Perhaps that Ironman suit fits you more than I thought, because if you’re a hero then you’re a drunk hero, intoxicated on your own self-righteousness.”

Mickey snarled. “What does that make you then Deadpool? You’ve spent your entire time on the Omniverse pursuing your own selfish goals and desires, never once considering those around you. I’ve seen you end life just for the sheer amusement of it. What does that make yo--”

”It makes me human!” the mercenary interrupted. ”It makes me as flawed as any other organism on Stan Lee’s green earth. The difference between me and you isn’t our actions--because we both fight and destroy--it’s our core values. While you’ve made a mockery of your morals every other story arc, I’ve always upheld mine. I’ve never betrayed a teammate, and I’ve never tried to act like someone I’m not.

And you know what’s funny? This finale only reinforced your hypocrisy. While you’ve been on your Kerrigan revenge tour you forgot about all the innocent lives running around this facility in panic. But don’t worry, because I--the person you consider to be evil and sociopath--did think of the innocent people here.

Today is the day you realize there are no such things as heroes, just men of character and beasts like you.”





Quote:WC - 1777
Using T2 power-up for rest of right (-4SP) Stats now - 5/7/3/8

Dante's Abyss Placings
2015 - 4th
2016 - 2nd
2017 - 4th


PVP Combat Record
(One-on-One)
3W - 0L - 0D
(TAG-TEAM)
4W - 1L - 0D
[Image: Deadpool_Funny.png]
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#4
The woman flew through the wall with a grunt, sparks, wires and sparking wires erupting from the gutted structure like guts from an eviscerated body.

She groaned and shook the bits of plaster from her knotted hair and slowly drug herself to her feet.

Klaxons screamed in her ears, red lights swirled overhead, and the she was forced to catch her balance as the floor jerked and shifted below her feet. The universe seemed to spin around her as she reeled, the very structure of the verse splitting at the seams.

Somehow, she knew this was it. This is where it would all end. This was the end.

She couldn’t quite tell you what it was. There had been more than a few times in this competition that she had felt like the world was caving in on her, and it literally had, but this was different. The cracks of this tremor split all the way down to the roots of her, and in some ways, she felt herself crumbling along with the walls and ceiling.

This building was Karl Jak. She knew that even in the beginning, though she might not have realized it. This structure and everything within it. The cameras, the arenas, the concessions and the workers. The vanity, the glory, every live feed pointed inward in a grand display of the self. It was voyeurism, and now it tumbled into chunks of broken bone and chips of dried flesh. Karl was changing. Or perhaps dying.

Somehow, she understood. And in that moment of understanding, a thought resonated so deeply within her that it snatched away all of the naivety that she had allowed herself. It burned the excuses and explanations from her tongue as quickly as it snapped into perfect clarity the aching agony that she carried with her ever since that cold night in the tavern face to face with some pink-skinned punk. The night when she died, fear lancing into and through her chest as cleanly and perfectly as it did in this moment.

She knew the vast and seeming emptiness of it, of this life, of this creation she was. What it meant to be everything, and yet be so hollow. She knew it, and she could no longer escape it with another fight, or another speech, or another joke.

This entire competition, it seemed, had been designed to teach her this lesson. To gift her this one perfect moment of salience. The people she met. The people she had beaten. The words that had spilled out of her mouth, a jumbled mess attempting to approximate the inner truth that only now she could fully grasp.

Truly, it meant nothing. Not this fight. Not this place. Every single person here had fought for some sense of wholeness, clawing at others and themselves in wild fury, gnashing and foaming at the mouth for the mere opportunity at purpose.

To create or consume or collect, to do and act and fight and die and all of it meant nothing. After so many years of seeing them, hating them, loathing their empty agency in a cruel world, after seeing their dispassion and their boredom and their cruelty… finally. Finally she knew that emptiness that she had seen in them and so despised.

That yearning. That knowledge that the universe sprawled out before you, that you could do anything, be anything, and yet you still felt so helpless. So impotent. Despite your grandeur, despite your importance, kingdoms, masteries, powers.... You were so small. So meaningless.

She saw it in Kerrigan. She saw it in Mickey. She saw it in Shang Tsung and Okor. She saw it in Karl Jak.

She knew what it meant to be a Prime. She knew that what she was in the presence of an absent god. To be promised control that you would never have, and in the grand failure of that promise, to feel only terror. All the power of a prime and still wanting to do more. Be more.

And without something more to be, she knew that the only other option was to be nothing.

Reality swirled and spun about her, lights flickering, red filling her senses, the stink of burning metal filling her nose, a weight sinking in on her chest. She staggered and planted her hammer to keep herself steady as the dizzying sense of cacophony overtook her.

Then a glimpse of pink caught her eye.

Everything stopped. Her gut lurched back into place. She sucked in a sharp breath, locked her jaw, and tightened her grip on the hammer.

“Caret!” she shouted, swallowing the stone that had been caught in her throat. “Caret I’m coming!”

---

Somewhere else in the world, a singer stepped up to a microphone.

“The world is an overflowing gutter,”

Neon lights danced over the dark city streets of Coruscant’s lower levels, punks, homeless and vagrants milling about in their own destitution.

“It bubbles with a brine of shit blood,”

Farmers in Camelot lurched home over dirt paths wet with the mess of chamberpots, drunk off of poorly made swill made in the basement of a nearby tavern.

“And those that keep their eyes upon the heavens,”

A dim beam of light gleamed upon Yu Kanda’s delicate features.

“Are the ones that end up face down in the mud.”

His mutilated neck arches backwards as a machine drops his corpse down in a vast pit, filled with the numberless dead below.

“It’s easy to speak of grand ambition,”

Sinestro sneered, arms folded over his chest as he oversees one of his corpsman dragging a bloodied citizen into the street.

“It’s easy to pretend your innocent,”

Minnie stared out over the grave of a landscaper who’s name she’s forgotten again, fingers picking at a tissue as she fretted over public opinion.

“But lest you get distracted by the suffering of your sister,”

A man gingerly kissed his wife’s cheek and tousled his young daughter’s hair before taking his lunchbox from the doorside table.

“Being practical and trying to pay the rent.”

He slipped a stormtrooper’s helm over his face, and slid his pistol into its holster.

“Heaven has been promised to the righteous,”

Doomguy stepped over the threshold into the Oververse, the beams of white and gold washing over his grizzled features.

“Hell's an overpopulated pit,”

The screams of the damned echoed in the air as Diablo grumbles, a chorus of demons howling behind him, sharing in his eternal frustration.

“Purgatory’s given to the dreamers,”

Grobdom lingers behind the long trail of secondaries that wandered amid the seemingly empty and endless Void.

“But the world belongs to those who plough the shit!”

---

The bandit crashed into Kenpachi’s shoulder, the spikes along the edges of her armor gouging into his skin as she spiraled out of her path and slammed into a concessions stand with an explosion of popcorn and cardboard boxes.

Chugging onward like a freight train, her legs carried her with manic energy through the food court. She turned her head to the sudden hum of purple energy just in time to see Erik appear at her side, Mageslayer already in mid-swing.

The blade sunk into her armor with the shriek of steel, caught in the gouge it had created. The weapon was wrenched from his hands as the woman staggered and swerved, stumbling to a stop.

The massive swordsman erupted from the stall he had been hurled into, his titanic blade shooting sparks in every direction as it sank down into her from behind. She howled as blood trickled down her arm, but a retaliatory strike was halted when her arms became tangled with the weapon that already stuck from her chest.

Her eyes darted to Erik, who slowly stalked towards her. Grasping Magus’ head from her belt, she tore it free and threw it to the ground. Slowly a dense fog began to slip between his lips, devouring her in darkness.

Losing no time, she released the clasps at her side and slipped out of the oversized breastplate. She ducked as Kenpachi’s blade swept over her head, turned, and ran. Erik’s purple energy flashed as he leapt into the air, slashing down on the distracted warrior behind her, allowing her to continue her reckless sprint.

---

“There's a special place in hell for fancy talkers,”

Neallaph’s many eyes blinked in horrible disunion, staring out into an unknowable future from a place far beyond our perception or understanding.

“There’s a special place in heaven for the whores,”

Ash sighed and clambered out of the Fountain, wringing her hair out onto the white tile below. A man walked in the distance and a cruel smirk grew on her lips.

“There's a throne reserved for those with good ideas,”

Guu’s fingers drummed impatiently as she gazed down at her massive city and all of its citizens, yet unwilling to rejoin them.

“Stolen by the demagogues who wanted more.”

Okor’s lumbering, wretched body lurched through the undergrowth of the Greens, the putrefying bodies of Mokugakure ninjas behind him.

“The flowers and the laces in the market,”

Talos smiled as he handled a flower at a small market stall, the sun shining on his brow, a wide grin on his face.

“Are all purchased by the peddlers of the flesh,”

Drake Oneir unzips a massive duffle bag in front of a crew of gangsters, who hungry dive in and retrieve large guns and small vials of pills.

“But those who bring relief and carnal pleasure,”

A prostitute stroked the balding head of a sleeping man as she looked out the nearby window into the streets of Darkshire.

“Sometimes serve the needs of mankind for the best.”

Her corpse stared into the sky as fires burn in the distance, the man sobbing over her before a zergling’s blade sinks into his back, their blood mingling amid the cobblestone.

“Cast off the limitations of the righteous,”

Harbinger’s flames roared as a massive explosion erupts all around them, yellow, green, red and purple mingling with the broken bodies littered around them.

“There are good deeds only devils can commit,”

Wade grit his teeth as he held open an escape pod door, blood leaking from his palms as pneumatics struggle to close, secondaries flooding into the cramped space inside.

“Let us dance between the teardrops and the angels,”

Tears streaked down Mickey’s face below the fractured holographic readouts inside his mask, energy beams blasting after Kerrigan as she telekinetically moved debris into their path.

“For the world belongs to those who plough the shit!”
---

The nameless woman slid to a stop as a set of massive steel doors sealed shut just in front of her. She hissed through her teeth and pounded her fist against them impotently before taking a few steps back.

Unslinging her rifle, she crushed the energy cell at its base and hurled it at the door. The deafening explosion shook the building with a mighty rumble, but when the smoke cleared a hole just large enough for her to snake through remained.

She clambered through the opening, the jagged metal opening a few cuts on her unprotected skin, and landed in the main hallway.

“Caret!” she screamed, her voice hoarse from the smoke and dust.

The engineer waved her arms back and forth wildly from the front of a panicked crowd that pressed against a similar bulkhead that led to the teleporters. The woman pressed her way through the crowd, elbowing and shoving until she found herself at her companion’s side.

“What about the others?” she shouted over the din of yowling media and audience members.

“They’re on the other side!” she screamed in return. “We can’t get through!”

The bandit looked the lock up and down, snarled, and pushed her way back into the crowd. “Back up!” she screamed, “I said back up, Omni damn you!” she repeated when they didn’t listen.

She stepped back into a wide stance, curled her metal fingers, and cocked her fist. White energy slowly began to glow from the cracks and seams of the prosthetic, and a gentle breeze rushed between the crowd. Only when the people began to take notice of this did they shout and clear the path.

Clenching her teeth, she charged forward and slammed a punch into the door. A white grid formed over it, a blast of energy and wind billowing out around it. Deep gouges were present, but the several inches of reinforced plate hadn’t fallen yet.

With a shout, the fist impacted it again, several of the bolts flying out from the joints. Another dent. She punched again, and again and again, bits of metal flying from per forearm with every strike. Fingers bent and fell away as Crash Magic chipped away at the bulkhead.

One final time she reeled the distorted arm backwards, bits dripping from it as power shone from inside. With one final and horrible shout, she thrust the mangled limb into the barricade, splintering into a million broken shards as the doorway gave in.

The nameless woman huffed and gasped the obliterated stump that remained of her mechanical arm as the secondaries poured through into the teleportation chamber.

---

Omni’s unflinching grin appeared in a sea of darkness, and two massive white hands reached up to cradle the floating image of an unsculpted, undifferentiated human form made entirely of scintillating rainbow.

“At last the supreme maker decreed that this creature
To whom he could give nothing holy his own
Should have a share
In the particular endowment of every other creature
Taking man therefore this
Creature of indeterminate image
He set him in the middle of the world
And thus spoke to him”

Omni’s lips moved without words in the void, the muddled form of the creature staring up at him in utter terror and awe.

“We have given you all Adam
No visage proper to yourself
No endowment properly your own
In order that
Whatever price, whatever form, whatever gifts you may with
Premeditation select
These same may you have and possess
Through your own judgement and decision
We have made you a creature neither of heaven
Nor of Earth!”

The being appeared at the foot of the Fountain, staring up at it upon its hands and knees.

“Neither mortal
Nor immortal!
And order that you may
As the free and proud shaper of your own being
Fashion yourself in the form you may propose
It will be in your power
To descend to the lower brutish forms of life
You will be able through your own judgement and decision
To rise again to the superior orders
Of life as divine!”
---

The woman dashed into the teleportation room, her head swiveling as she searched. A faint smile brushed her lips when she spotted what she had been looking for.

“Into the truck!” she shouted.

Balanlara swept up into the bed and began to pull the teeming masses into the truck’s massive bed while Caret clambered into the driver’s seat. She twisted the key, but her face sank as the engine lazily gurgled and churned.

“It’s not turning over!” Caret shouted, panic beginning to take over.

The mechanic leapt from the the seat and to the front, quickly flipping open the hood. “Fuck!” she barked, “Something must have gone wrong in the teleport! There are parts missing!”

The woman’s eyes narrowed and she jogged up to join her. Without a word, she ripped a section of the faulty engine out with a single hand, pulled the hammer from her back, and slammed it into place.

“Make it work!” she commanded.

---

“The dead become the emperors of memory,”

Ganondorf looked out over the dunes, eyes fresh to the this new world, and dreamt of conquest.

“The saints have all been eaten by the worms,”

Gildarts smiled as he stooped down and placed his hand on a young child’s shoulder.

“The living will write a twisted future,”

Gilgamesh sat upon his golden throne, his charismatic smile filling the room.

“And the sinners all have practical concerns,”

The green soul of a guardsman flowed into Shang Tsung’s mouth, his wrinkles fading as quickly as life drained from the man’s eyes.

“The sentinels with rifles on the border,”

A Koopa Troopa kicked the skull of a Goron down the steep cliffs of the mountain and turned back to his raid.

“Of the pretenses of charity are swept,”

The Emperor smiled as the city rushed and zipped below him, dancing to a song only he could orchestrate.

“Oh but let's not talk of slipping into nightmares,”

Sigfried leaned on his broom and stared up at the sky, ash dotting his cheeks before he returned to his work.

“For the days are won by those who haven't slept.”

The dark sky boils over the sea as Dark Data consumes an island in the distance as primes stare on from a beach volleyball court.

---

The woman looked to the overpacked teleportation pad with her truck perched upon it and pressed her finger into the datapad.

A digital buzz rang and a gentle voice reprimanded her, “Genetic signature detected. Contestants not permitted to exit.”

“Fuck you!” she roared, slapping down on it a few more times.

Her eyebrows furrowed for a moment before they unravelled. She snatched a chunk of twisted titanium from the floor and plunged it into her gut, twisting it about while wincing in pain before tearing it free.

She smeared her hand over her bellow and lifted it, now covered in the horrible black ichor. Once again she placed her hand on the pad, this time followed by a friendly chime.

“Genetic signature detected. Emergency power remaining will allow for… ONE… teleportation. Please wait while the system powers up. Okor Pureblood, please enjoy your trip home!”

She sighed with relief and staggered backwards until her back hit the wall, then slid down it. She closed her eyes and wiped the slop of sweat from her brow, only opening them when she heard footsteps racing towards her.

Caret grabbed her shoulders and shook her firmly. “Come on! We have to go!” she pleaded. “There’s enough room for you!”

“No,” the nameless woman said softly. “No, I’m not going.”

“What the hell do you mean!?” Caret screamed, shaking her shoulders firmly enough to batter the woman against the wall. “Who knows what’s gonna happen if you don’t leave now! This place is going crazy! You might get stuck and not be able to get back!”

The woman snarled and swat Caret’s hands away. “I know! I fuckin know, alright?”

“Then what are you doing?” the mechanic pleaded.

A faint smile grew on the woman’s lips, and she looked away. “I’m staying.”

“No.” Caret stood up straight and began to tug on the woman’s arm. “You aren’t leaving me again. Not again! Do you hear me!?”

“FINE!” the bandit snapped and worked her way up.

The two jogged to the pad, and Caret opened the door. She looked back and gestured for the woman to get inside. “You never let me drive, remember?” she said, a bubbly smile on her lips.

A single tear streaked through the dust on the bandit’s face. “I think I gotta make an exception this time, kid.”

The yellow ribbon whipped from her wrist and around the steering wheel, and the bandit quickly lashed it around Caret’s waist, then slipped it off of her wrist. The magical tether formed a knot instantly, refusing to nudge as the bubblegum haired woman struggled against it.

“No!” she sobbed, “No, you said you’d come with us! You can’t leave me! YOU CAN’T DO THIS!”

The bandit leaned in and placed a small kiss on her forehead. Caret’s tiny fists bounced off of the nameless woman’s chest and shoulders as he stepped backwards. “I’m sorry,” she said, her voice cut with sorrow. “I’m so sorry.”

She slowly stepped away as the teleporter hummed to life, white lights slowly coming up from the floor. She looked up to Balanlara, who gave a stiff, silent nod.

“You need to know that I love you, ok?” she croaked. “It’s gonna be ok. You’re going to be ok without me.”

Before the woman could respond, she was consumed in white…

… and was gone.

---

“So throw away the vestments of the righteous
Make sure the body almost lovely fits
The souls are taking flight now from the boathouse
And the world belongs to those who plough the shit!”
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#5
To call the scene within the Syntech facility bedlam would be selling it far too short. Even Kenpachi, the glutton for violence that he would readily admit to being, found the raucous din to be a bitter morsel on his palate. As much as he’d have liked to duke it out with the rest of the sextet that had found themselves dropped into the middle of the madness, something struck him as odd. Wrong, even.

“I don’t like this,” he found himself muttering as he took off at a dash across the devastated staging area. If the Kenpachi who had joined Dante’s Abyss could hear the words he spoke now, he’d scarcely have believed his ears. Wasn’t this exactly what he had yearned for? Hadn’t he gotten his wish of bloodshed and uberviolence in spades?

The shinigami’s spidery fingers wrapped tightly around the hilt of his zanpakuto, his lips curling into a dissatisfied frown as he set his sights on the battle unfolding before him. Panicked spectators gave the clash a wide berth, doing their best to avoid falling rubble or rogue projectiles from the warring Primes. Zaraki barely paid the masses much attention, other than perhaps the courtesy of leaping over the few who had found themselves in his warpath. He hadn’t the time to take each poor soul by the hand and lead them to salvation, and the idea that he should be expected to do so was borderline comical to him. Despite whatever protection Karl Jak and co. had afforded the onlookers who had paid their fee to slake their bloodlust second-hand in his Abyss, they knew the risks. Nothing but blind trust stood between Colosseum-goers and a lion bounding into the stands.

Hey!” Zaraki barked, absent-mindedly tossing a panicked escapee aside as he called toward the scuffling contestants. “Two against one ain’t what I’d call fair.”

”Hey man,” Deadpool snapped, staggering backward as an Iron Mouse repulsor blast threatened to knock him on his ass. “I’ve been trying to get Queen Bitch to let me have my moment with the mouse, but she’s incessant.”

“‘Fair’ is for the foolhardy,” Kerrigan growled, seemingly ignoring Deadpool’s quip as she brought her bladed wings across Mickey’s armored back in tandem. Sparks sprayed from the mouse’s flank before he spun in place, taking off into their air to avoid another such slash.

“I meant fair to me," Kenpachi quipped, tearing toward the infested Ghost.

Sarah quickly raised her intimidating appendages to parry, blocking an otherwise damaging kiss from the ronin’s blade. “Very well,” came her retort as she conjured a sphere of energy within her grasp. She quickly tossed her wings wide as she struck out, burying the blast within the Death God’s gut. “The mouse will have to wait.”

Kenpachi staggered backward as the afflicted psion pressed the attack, the robed warrior altogether unprepared for such a savage opener. His left hand shot forward, snagging the Queen’s wrist in a vice-like grip before slamming into her skull with a vicious headbutt. In the second that his retaliation had afforded him, Zaraki stole a glance at his comrade, still going toe-to-toe with the mouthy Merc. From what little he knew of Mickey, it was hard to tell how the monarch was feeling beneath his mask. Had the savagery he’d bore upon their meeting returned, or was this violence hurting the King as much as it was his enemies? Deadpool clearly did not bear any such concerns with his foe’s well-being; Grandstanding aside, Wade wasn’t pulling any punches.

What was it he had said, about being a hero?

Zaraki’s mind began to wander as he and Kerrigan danced their deadly tango, blade gnashing against blade. He’d waltzed to this rhythm many times before, the movements nearly second nature as his blood intermingled in a murky pool at his feet with the ichor of his foul foe. So often he’d follow this same footwork, finding a thrill in felling anything that might stand in his way. The count of those he’d slaughtered in his long lifetime was innumerable, and yet he still never felt satisfied in the bloodshed. No matter how big and ugly his adversary was, he’d always needed more. A deadlier foe, a bigger thrill. Could he ever get enough?

The glee that he had always felt in battle had begun to dwindle as he fought his way through the abyss. It had been almost imperceptible at the onset, like a long strung-out junkie just happy to get any kind of fix before falling short of the feeling of that first high once more. He’d enjoyed the ecstasy, sure, while it lasted, but it wasn’t long before that familiar hollow feeling swelled once more within his gut. What was it that these battles had lacked? What thirst was he striving to slake? Was this just some consequence of being within the Danteverse, or was the Omniverse itself to blame? Try as he might to attribute these feelings to the schemes of some mad god, he couldn’t shake the fact that perhaps they had always been there.

Was he, as Deadpool had put it in his harangue toward Mickey, one such beast?

The robed ronin gritted his teeth as a serrated wing-blade tore a wide gash across his chest, ample blood spilling upon the battered facility floor. Kerrigan’s eery yellow optics shone brighter at the sight, seizing the chance to lash out once more, raking a set of repugnant talons across his throat. A wet wheeze escaped his lips as his trachea was torn open, fresh blood spraying from the new wound and spattering his ebon robes. Kenpachi found his vision beginning to blur as Kerrigan redoubled her efforts.

Was this all he had? Was he just another animal doomed to die in the gutter, desperately clawing at some semblance of meaning? Had his quest for bloodshed just been some attempt to find meaning, to find some reason for existence? Had his whole life been just such a fool’s errand?

“KENNY!”

Her.

The Death God’s heart skipped a beat as a familiar voice rang out over the impossibly chaotic din. Shrill, whiny, irritating. He blinked hard as his arm shot up of its own accord and brought his zanpakuto down with startling force against Kerrigan’s chitinous carapace. The Queen hissed as she struggled against his brawn, finally juking sideways to avoid the full might of this strike.

KENNY!

Through all the strife he'd nearly forgotten about her.

With a grunt, Kenpachi lunged forward, regaining his wits as he threw a mean right hook into the afflicted matriarch’s tarnished mug. He could feel the void within his gut begin to shrink as a smile crept across his face. Without missing a beat, the shinigami allowed his momentum to carry him forward before bringing his arm back across Kerrigan’s face in a powerful backhand.

Maybe he was a beast, and maybe he always would be. But right now, that didn’t matter. He hadn’t the time to have some fit of melodramatic navel gazing. He’d have to grasp at whatever meaning he could find and hold it dearly to his chest.

With a snarl, Kerrigan regained her composure and struck out at the shaggy samurai with renewed vigor. Whether it was rage or pure contempt that fueled her strikes, he couldn’t know. Truthfully, he reckoned it was more likely than not a mixture of the two. A broad grin spread across Kenpachi’s bloodied countenance as he caught hold of the Queen, gripping a wing in each hand and pulling the appendages forcefully apart. A familiar yellow glow bloomed before the swordsman’s eyes for a brief moment, though the tainted psychic couldn’t land the blow before Kenpachi planted a boot in her gut that sent her toppling backward end-over-end.

“KENNY!”

I HEARD YOU!” Kenpachi roared over his shoulder, shaking his head. “Gimme a minute!”

Ignoring any sort of reply the girl could have offered, the swordsman took the opportunity to charge toward the other pair of combatants while Kerrigan recovered. Wade had taken to spraying the airborne Iron Mouse with gunfire, his skillful shots finding their home in Mickey’s armor. That was, until a well-timed punch from Kenpachi sent him sprawling.

”Hey, what’d you just say about two vs. one?”

“Heh,” Ken scoffed, wasting no time in laying into Wade with another haymaker as the mercenary scrambled to get to his feet. “The mouse knows already, I’m a greedy guy.” He could barely finish the quip before the familiar burn of psionic fury searing into his backside. “Took ya’ long enough, you ugly bitch!”

“Kenny, what’re you doing?” Mickey’s voice boomed overhead, augmented by his technological armaments. “I’m not letting you fight them both. And I’ve got a bone to pick with her!”

“Shut it, Mick!” Kenpachi replied, a friendly smile gracing his mug as he ignored some snide off-color remark from Deadpool. “We both know that revenge isn’t a good look on you. No matter what this obnoxious asshole thinks, I know the truth: you’re better than this.”

“How do you know what I’m better than?” Even behind the menacing mask of Iron Mouse, Kenpachi could hear the monarch’s voice waver, ever-so-slightly.

“Wild guess,” the Death God replied, ducking to avoid a wing-blade separating his head from his body. “You remind me of someone I know.”

”You’ve already used that line!” Deadpool snapped, charging the shinigami in a whirlwind to steel.

“Get going!” Kenpachi instructed, ignoring the mercenary’s remark as he brought his zanpakuto to bear. “Look for a little girl around your height, with pink hair and wearing a robe like mine. Bring her with you.”

“I’m not going to leave you here to die!” Mickey protested, hovering uncertainly overhead. The Death God couldn’t help but smirk at the mouse’s antics. Hero.

“I didn’t plan on dying here!” the shinigami retorted. “I’m not some selfless martyr, and I’m definitely no hero. Just stop worrying about me and use that fancy suit to get the girl and get to the transporter!”

He didn’t wait for Mickey’s reply. For the first time since arriving in the Abyss, he felt a new kind of thrill swelling within his chest. He didn’t have a word for it, but it felt wonderful.
[Image: G3vODOp.png]
Dante's Abyss '15
Participant
Vincent Valentine

[Image: oQAQ9Jn.png]
Dante's Abyss '16
Grand Champion
Nanaki/Red XIII

[Image: sfSJ19f.jpg]
(07-16-2018, 06:14 PM)Lord Zedd Wrote: I'm here to kick ass and write compelling stories with Vincent Valentine.

And baby, we're all out of Vincent Valentine.
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#6
pErik stepped into the Syntech facility, still aching from his previous fight. In retrospect, it was slightly absurd that the competitors had turned a simple race into a bloodbath, but that was what you had to expect in Dante’s Abyss. The cultist’s thoughts were broken by the blaring of a klaxon and the sounds of the panicked masses. 

“By the gods…” Erik muttered as his eyes darted around the facility, taking in the chaos. The deceptively calm voiceover gave some reason of the madness, announcing cheerily that the failing life shuttles would be the only way out of the collapsing facility. The psychic couldn't help but wonder what exactly had happened to cause the facility to suddenly collapse. Had Karl Jak died? Had Diablo broken free from the Underverse and laid siege to the Danteverse? 

Erik didn't have long to consider this point as Deadpool made his decision almost instantly. The cultist couldn't say he was too surprised the mercenary’s decision to fight the mouse, but the motives caught him off guard. As the pair went their separate ways, admiration swelled in Erik’s chest. He had expected nothing but showboating from the spandex suited superhero, but was presented with one of the most selfless acts he had seen in the Omniverse. 

Determination rose up within the priest. He would fulfill Deadpool’s last wish, even if it killed him. Erik’s train of thought was interrupted by someone blindsiding his in the chaos. The cultist’s eyes shot around the crowd, drawing Mageslayer unconsciously. The skull-faced woman was rushing towards him through the masses, and Erik didn't hesitate. In his madness-infected mind, the psychic couldn't fathom any other reason for the bandit to be rushing towards him other than to stop him.

Mageslayer sang as it slashed through the air, cutting into the woman’s breastplate before being ripped from his grasp. Despair struck into Erik as his faithful blade was torn from him, bringing a gasp from his throat. The cultist lunged towards the bandit as she ripped a severed head from her belt and dropped it to the floor, concealing herself in murk. Dismay gripped the priest as he stumbled, his breath growing shallow as he began to feel sick. He barely noticed Kenpachi as he rushed off to aid his partner. 

Relief flooded through him as the fog dissipated, revealing a discarded breastplate with Mageslayer still gouged into it. The cultist dashed to the abandoned armour, thanking the gods as he yanked his precious blade free. Erik looked the edge over quickly and, satisfied that it was unsullied, resheathed the sword. The priest’s thoughts turned back to his mission as he turned to the maddened crowd, considering his options. 

After a few moments of thought, Erik decided that the correct course of action would be to find any young secondaries still in the facility and escort them to the life shuttles. The cultist moved quickly, searching the crowds for any children who weren’t rescued with their parents. His thoughts turned back to Valerie, but seeing as there wasn't a small blonde half-zombie tearing a bloody swathe through the crowds, he assumed that she had left when Victor was eliminated.

Erik shoved his way through the chaos, somewhat relieved to be unable to see any children around. However, a shrill sound barely reached his ear over the racket. The sound of a child crying. The psychic turned to the source of the sound, and pushed his way towards it. Hiding beneath a table in the middle of the chaos, a pair of children were huddled together. The cultist peaked beneath the table at the boy and the girl, pity rising up in his chest. The pair were clearly lost and terrified, bawling their eyes out in the relative safety of the table. Erik pressed his hand to the floor, summoning a psi wall to split the crowd and give him some space. 

“Where are your parents?” The psychic asked gently.

“The teleporter stopped when mommy and daddy went through it.” The boy choked from between sobs. Erik’s heart sank. Even the notion of leaving your children behind was soul-crushing. 

“Come on, let’s get you to the life shuttles.” The cultist said, gesturing to the children. The pair hesitated a moment, but seemed to trust the idea of a prime helping them escape. The psychic kept a hand on Mageslayer as he lead the children towards the life shuttles, wary of any bloodthirsty primes that would attempt to stop him just for the thrill of it. While navigating the halls of the facility, the psychic heard a deep rumbling from above him. His eyes shot up just in time to see a chunk of rubble crashing towards him. 

Erik’s eyes lit up with violet energy as he reached his hand out into the air, halting the rubble with his telekinesis. The psychic paused, realising that he had nowhere to drop it in the chaotic crowds. Thinking quickly, the cultist hurled the rubble into the top of a nearby wall, lodging it deep within the wall.

“Quickly.” Erik urged to the children. “We don't have much time.”

As they turned the corner to the shuttles, however, despair cut into Erik. Violet and Zedd, undefeated so far, were already at the shuttles, preparing to leave. The cultist chewed his thumb nervously, accidentally drawing blood in his anxiety. There was no way he could fight them, but he couldn't just let the children die, either. Fortunately, his salvation came in the form of an anthropomorphic mouse. Mickey rounded the corner, a small, pink-haired girl in tow. Erik resisted a snide remark at the mouse’s expense, instead gesturing to him to come over. 

“What do you want?” Mickey asked, slightly suspicious. “Aren't you Deadpool’s partner?” 

“I am.” Erik replied, maintaining his neutral expression. “I see we had a similar idea.” 

“Apparently…”

Erik sighed before motioning towards the shuttles at Zedd and Violet, who hadn't yet noticed the primes. 

“I'm trying to get these children out of here, but those two don't strike me as the type to listen to reason.” The psychic said, receiving a small nod from the mouse. “You're all about half the size of a person. I don't have the right to ask you this, but could you take these children and escape with them.”

“But what about Zedd and Violet?” Mickey asked.

“That's where I come in.” Erik said, psi flaring up within him. "I'll keep them busy." Mickey looked uncertain, but nodded.

“Alright, I'll do it.” The mouse said. “Can I ask why you're doing this?” 

“Because it's not their time to die.” Erik said matter-of-factly. The cultist turned towards the shuttles, Mageslayer in hand as he marched down the hall. He was a prime, he know that he would come back. But Erik couldn't help but feel a sense of finality in this moment. Mageslayer’s familiar weight sat comfortably in his grip. It was only right that he should die with his blade. 

Alien whispers filled Erik’s mind, his psyche laid bare by his near constant psi usage. The eldritch whispering was incomprehensible, but it was strangely comforting knowing that Gal’skap was with him in this moment. Along with the chaotic chittering of the mad God, there was another voice cutting into his mind. Rotted vocal chords rasped otherworldly words into his consciousness. Again, the words were unintelligible to Erik’s mortal mind, but the message was clear. His time was up, and all of the blessings in the world wouldn't be enough to save him.

Zedd heard his approach first, nudging Violet to get her attention. The pair turned to face the psychic, the amethystine light in his eyes boring into them. Erik raised Mageslayer, levelling it at them.

“Uunn’gaelig is calling me. Come, bring me death before you meet your end, dogs.” 

No more monologues, no more poetry. Just fate running its course.
*The emperor of mankind yeets erik into a sun*
[Today 08:03 pm] Erik Vrell : Bruh
[Today 08:03 pm] The emperor of mankind : don't worship gods
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#7
The rubble that crashed across the ruined preshow facility broke into dust and powder above Sarah Kerrigan’s head. The Infested queen calmly walked past the crushed zergling that twitched and struggled uselessly against the stone holding its midsection in a rigid vice grip.

Around her, Secondaries fought uselessly for the opportunity to leave the facility, both against the collapsing environment and each other as the various exits from Karl’s miniature universe ran out of power or were swallowed up by the destruction. Most wouldn’t leave. Kerrigan already knew the zerg infesting the verse were doomed - Kerrigan had heard their shrill, psychic screams amongst the chaos.

The idea it may be the last time she ever heard those screams was surprisingly amusing to her thoughts.

Ignoring the dying screams both in her mind and her ears, Kerrigan focused her telepathy to find the thoughts and location of one person.

It didn’t take long for her to find the battered Marauder, crouched against the wall near one of the emergency teleporters.

And so the infested terran, reading the bandit’s thoughts in a moment, walked over silently, and leaned against the wall next to her.

Kerrigan’s trademark smirk was gone, replaced with a soft smile as she regarded the destruction all around her. The bandit looked at her with hollowed eyes as the two silently exchanged a glance. Then, the bandit looked away.

Kerrigan took a brief moment before she said anything.

“I don’t think I ever wanted to hurt anyone originally, to be honest.” Kerrigan stated suddenly, in a smaller voice than she’d ever used. “Well, for a long time, I didn’t.”

The bandit looked over with a curious look, noticing the change in Kerrigan’s expression.

“For the first portion of my life, I was just - too strong. I’d do it without meaning to. I learned all about it when I killed my mother, and pretty soon, the local government had me brainwashed to do it on their terms.” Kerrigan added with the ghost of a smirk on her features.

“When Mengsk delivered me from all that, I did kill for his little rebellion, but it was never because I wanted to. I was just grateful. He gave me a chance at seeing life beyond just a combination of test subject and assassin. A life where my mind wasn’t wiped clean of all memory every day. Something with real meaning.”

Kerrigan paused for a moment, and lifted both hands. A falling I-beam was caught in a telekinetic glow, and thrown unceremoniously to the side.

“When he left me for the zerg… it felt a lot like this. Death was inevitable in front of a billion meat-eating monsters. Part of me wanted to curse Mengsk for leaving me for dead, but honestly, I didn’t have the energy. So I gave up.” Kerrigan continued casually. “I think that was when I stopped caring. When the Zerg gave me a second chance, another chance to have some control over my own life, I decided I’d do anything I needed to keep that control.”

Kerrigan thought about the statement, and a small chuckle erupted from her lips. “And look where it’s got me. About to be crushed under several thousand tons of rubble in a dimension that looks ready to collapse in on itself.

The bandit looked at her with suspicious eyes, eyes that demanded an explanation. “I ain’t ever heard ya talk like this, Kerri.”

“A soul’s a pretty damning weakness to have, Ass-kicker.” Kerrigan said, with a hint of her old smirk coming back. “I try to keep mine under wraps, but I figured I’d be alright with just one person knowing about it, in case I die down here.”

Bandit shrugged. “Well, bad luck, I’m staying.”

Kerrigan stared the bandit down imperiously. “Don’t you think that’s rather selfish? Weren’t you the champion of the secondaries? Better than every other prime.”

“ It’s all ending, Kerri. I got a good feeling this is it. No more prime regeneration. No takesies-backsies if we die here..”

Kerrigan chuckled. “Then we’re all mortal now. If that’s the case, act like it..”

Kerrigan pulled the Slumped bandit to her feet forcefully. “All around you, you’re watching secondaries cling to life in every way they can. They want to live - that’s the basic instinct of every single living being. I come from a place where no one got the advantage of prime regeneration, and yet it was rare to come across someone who gave up just because they didn’t have some special advantage from that. For fuck’s sakes.” Kerrigan snapped. “Does being a prime now make you better than them?”

The Desert Marauder recoiled, slapping Kerrigan’s hand off her shoulder.“You’re just trying to say whatever you think will get me to come with you and help you get out of here.”

“And for the first person to ever earn this much effort from me, you’re certainly wasting the favor.” Kerrigan responded with one of her more natural smirks. “I could have escaped without you quite easily by now, but I don’t accept half-measures when it comes to getting what I want. We’re getting out of here. Got it?” The Queen of Blades added with a patient smile.

The staring contest took a while before it resolved, As the two women looked eachother dead in the eye.

Then, the Bandit’s shoulders slumped in front of Kerrigan’s gaze. “Alright. Let’s get the hell out of here then.”

“Good. Let’s get moving.” Kerrigan responded with a curved grin, as the duo headed for the shuttlebays.

Quote:wordcount=974 according to site.
I've really enjoyed writing with you all. My first DA was a blast! Thanks to everyone being amazing, and in particular Bandit for being an awesome partner.
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#8
The smell of rotting meat reached her nostrils first, her face curling in disgust. Then, the buzzer. The round was over, and her body phased from the arena to the bar. She never did find Zedd, but before she could approach the bartender to page him, Zedd decided to show up.
 
“At least you’re not dead,” he said.
 
“Yeah, at least you’re not dead.”
 
He looked at her in what she assumed was annoyance, but the amount of shits she gave was directly opposite of the amount of shits she gave when it came to hitting up that barkeep. “Hey, Kevin, was it? Triple shot of that Hibiki stuff, on ice.” Sliding into one of the leathery seats, Violet smirked. She was almost sure they had won the whole thing, but she was going to wait for the announcement. Regardless, she was going to celebrate.
 
Zedd took the seat next to her, looking all kinds of awkward  as he hunched over the granite bar. The bits of metal clinked as it bumped into the hard surface, but if it bothered him, it didn’t show. “Foolish woman. This isn’t the time to drink.”
 
“I disagree, my meaty friend. This is the perfect time.” Kevin laid out the triple flight of whiskey in front of her, and one by one, she knocked them back. “Think we won?”
 
“Doubtless,” Zedd replied, resting his elbows in front of him, fingers bridging.
 
Kevin asked if she wanted anymore, and she told him to leave the bottle. “You want some?”
 
Zedd glanced at her, but couldn’t make out his expression. Not like there wasn’t any sort of features she could read or anything. This was a hard fucker to communicate with. “Can…can you even drink? I mean, I don’t know if I’ve even seen you eat or drink the entire time we’ve been here. How uh, how does that whole thing work?”
 
“I’ve eaten,” Zedd gruffed. “I’ve drank.”
 
“Yeah, but like, how?
 
Zedd reached up and touched the side of his face mask, squeezing a small mechanism that held the lower half to the top visor. It came away with a metallic chink and he pulled it back, revealing a disturbingly disfigured mouth, thin lips that didn’t quite cover the smattering of fang-like teeth. “How the hell do you think I speak? Through my ass?”
 
Violet cringed, looking away. “Sort of related, but have you ever heard the phrase ‘to let one’s mouth overload their ass’?”
 
“What does that have to do with anything?”
 
“You talk a lot of shit.”
 
“Oh, the pot calling the kettle black!” Zedd had the audacity to look offended, if she could take wild guess from his body language.
 
“I mean, yeah, I guess I do,” Violet took the bottle and uncorked it, bringing the opening to her lips and taking a nice, languid swig. She then shoved it towards her partner. “But at least I back it up.”
 
Zedd looked at the bottle, then back to her, then back to the bottle. He muttered something she couldn’t quite make out and took the bottle. He lifted it to his mouth and tipped it in what she hoped was an effort not to spill the liquid. That shit was a grand per bottle, and although she wasn’t paying for it, it would have just been sad to waste. After a few deep gulps, he slammed the half empty container onto the bartop and shoved it back to her. “Happy?”
                                                  
“We’ll see soon enough, won’t we?” Violet smirked and reached for the bottle. It was a back and forth she was happy to partake.
 
“Think they’re about to announce the results,” Kevin chimed from his side of the bar. He had grabbed an empty glass and was drying it with a towel. It seemed like such a trivial thing to do. “Oh, wait, this is something different. What the hell?”
 
Violet was beginning to feel the alcohol taking its toll on her brain, wrapping itself in a nice, warm blanket around her thoughts, making her body welcomingly heavy. The speakers jolted her into reality, however, and she groaned.

Spectators and participants should immediately report to the hangar bay. Repeat, all spectators and participants should immediately report to the hangar bay.”
 
Violet glanced over to Zedd, who had already refitted his facemask into place. “Well, that’s a little odd.”
 
“Something’s happening,” Zedd slid out of his seat, his eyes darting around the open concourse. Everything seemed to eerily calm, even for a place like this. It raised her hackles.
 
The crash of steel through metal scaffolding was abrupt, not enough time to process before Violet was violently shoved to the ground. Through the dust and debris, Violet looked wildly around, only to find the bar she was just sitting at was crushed under the weight of several tons of metal, glass and plastic. Kevin was nothing but a hand reaching out uselessly from beneath a broken slab of granite. Poor Kevin. At least he had the insight to shove the bottle of whiskey to safety. Scrambling to her feet, she swooped up the half-drunken bottle and held it to her side before grabbing Zedd’s hand and dragging him off towards the hangar.
 
“Time to go!”
 
They dodged falling walls and other things as they made their way across the concourse towards the big sign that said HANGAR about 500 feet away. Dante’s Abyss was always unpredictable, but she felt that all of this was way off script, even for this place. Either Karl had gone mad, or…or she didn’t know. Something was definitely very, very wrong.
 
The hangar was flooded with people, participants, bystanders, staff, all running for their lives towards the escape shuttles. The cacophony of noise filled her ears, invading her thoughts.
 
“I can’t fucking think with all this noise,” Violet groaned, tossing back a sip of her pilfered bottle of booze. “Too many people, not enough shuttles.” She realized. “These people are going to die.”
 
“Good,” Zedd growled.
 
“The fuck you mean, ‘good’? I’m all for some good ol’ fashioned mayhem, but this isn’t the right way for anyone to go. Look at them, they’re terrified.”
 
“I suppose you want to save them?”
 
She looked at him, her face twisting in disbelief and disgust. “We already beat most of these guys. Many are staff, innocents. They don’t deserve to die.”
 
“One less body to go through towards my path to victory.” Zedd’s chest puffed up, set on his shitty opinion.
 
“Could be one less body period if you don’t get the stick out of your ass and show some compassion!” Violet turned to him, her face a mask of fury and indignity. “Maybe it’s the booze talking, but fucking hell, Zedd. You can’t be that cold-hearted. If you’re not going to help, get the hell out of my way so I can.”
 
“Insolent whelp, talking to me like that,” He turned towards her, a flash of light blazing through the glass of his visor. She felt a trickle of fear run down her spine, but she held strong against him. “The game is over.”
 
His warning wasn’t as thinly veiled as she thought he wanted to make it. “Astute observation, captain.” Violet snarled. “Perhaps you can work on your threats while you’re working on your ‘world domination’.”
 
Perhaps she’d said the wrong thing, or maybe Zedd was stressed out, but whatever it was, she could feel the rage boiling deep within him. It shrouded him in such a heat that she had to take several steps back just to keep from being overwhelmed. He reached to his side, fingers playing lightly over the dagger that was sheathed there. Indecision tore at him, the same as it did her. She could end him here, now, but there were more pressing matters at hand than soothing hurt feelings.
 
Something caught Zedd’s attention while she was busy trying to figure out her next move, but a nudge brought her back to reality.
 
“Come, bring me death before you meet your end, dogs.”
 
Violet looked up at the kid. Almost a half a foot taller than she, a mop of chestnut hair and eyes only a few shades bluer than her own, he seemed so big, and yet…so young. He was still a child. “Fuck off, kid. I don’t have time for your fuckery.”
 
He looked at them, dumbfounded.

“I also don’t appreciate being called a dog. I think the term you are looking for is ‘bitch’.” Violet reached up and scruffed his hair and nudged him away. He stood there, still staring with that stupid sword.
 
“Clearly, the kid wants to die,” Zedd unsheathed his dagger. “Is that right?”
 
He nodded, face set in a determined scowl.
 

Violet stepped forward, placing herself between Zedd and the kid. Probably a dumb move, but that’s not the point. “Let’s focus on getting the people who want to live out of here first, then we can talk about whatever little suicide shit you got swirling around that head of yours, alrighty?”
 
Suddenly, her chest began to burn, right around her collarbone. It was the mark. Her hand reached up and clutched the scar that was burned into her flesh, feeling it pulse beneath her fingertips. The heat scorched through the fabric and she cried out. The kid’s brows rose, intrigued. “Fuck me,” Violet hissed, pulling her hand away. The scar had burned through the shirt, revealing the rune shape that smoldered like a trapped fire within her skin.

“The hell is wrong with you?” Zedd pushed her away, his gaze catching the burning mark and recoiling. “What is that?”
 
“Diablo,” she breathed, her face paling. He wanted something, but what? “He’s trying to say something.”
 
“Maybe he’ll take you back to where you came from,” Zedd muttered.
 
“One can only hope,” Violet shot back, her eyes filled with painful rage. The mark pulsed again, more sharply this time, the smolder growing into a blinding white light. Her eyes closed against the brightness, and she cried out. Something was trying to pull itself from her, from that light. Stumbling away, Violet finally collapsed to her knees, her cry becoming a scream as the light enveloped her. For the space of several heartbeats, all she could feel was the heat, the light and that evil that was Diablo filling her with his presence.
 
“A gift…for my harbinger. Use it wisely.” She couldn’t even question him before she felt hands clasping her shoulders. She tried to shrug them away, thinking it was Zedd or the kid, but a voice, so familiar, so calm, whispered into her ear.
 
“Shh, it’s me, it’s me.”
 
Her eyes snapped open, vision clearing as the light died away. The face came into focus in waves, but the voice was all she needed to hear to know that Nathaniel was there. “You’re free,” Violet whispered.
 
“I am,” he replied. “Thanks to you. But for how long? What the hell is happening, Vi?”
 
“I don’t know,” she breathed. “Everything is falling apart. We have to get out of here. There are shuttles, but there’s only enough room for one at a time. There doesn’t seem to be enough for everybody.”
 
“Don’t worry, we’re going to get out of here,” Nathaniel helped her to her feet and looked around. He paused at Zedd, frowning, then moved on. “You’re right, though, there isn’t enough pods. This should make things a little easier.” He turned back to her, hand cupping her chin. He smiled at her as his face lowered towards hers, and their lips connected. She felt him melt, disintegrate and meld into her. They were one once more, two beings, one body. She closed her eyes, drinking in the rush of adrenaline as it surged through her. The changes were subtle, but to Zedd, he picked it up immediately. This wasn’t just Violet, this was something different. “Let’s get the hell out of here,” she motioned towards her partner. “Move!”
 

Quote:My NPC Nathaniel has been sent from Underverse as a gift from Diablo. He and Violet have fused into one being, so that if they make it to a pod, both can escape.

Violet is not looking to fight, but will try and help others if she can. She realizes many will perish despite her efforts. If you guys are going to roleplay her and are unsure about something or need opinions, I'm on discord, even if I don't show up as online. Feel free to message me!

Wordcount: 1994
[Image: visig2018.png]
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#9
Zedd scoffed as he struggled with a keypad for the escape shuttles. He didn’t know why his partner had become so righteous and selfless all of a sudden, but he really didn’t care to find out. His only concern was that he didn’t fully trust Karl Jak to not be coaxing them into another needlessly elaborate scenario. It didn’t truly matter to him personally, but apparently some of the lesser primes needed a decent excuse to commit horrible violence, just like the viewing audience needed a suitable reason to dispel their enjoyment of it. It was pathetic, but Zedd was beyond trying to understand these inferior beings.

More pressingly, Violet had been joined by some star crossed lover from the Underverse, or possibly a world before this one. His shared memories of this Nathaniel were fleeting and bleak, but he knew enough to know he was significant to his teammate. That was his true concern in this debacle. Another agent of the Underverse had arrived, suddenly and without warning, and Zedd was once more left to appreciate the raw power and control the demonic realm held over the Omniverse.

Not that any of it would matter if he didn’t escape this collapsing hellhole. He counted it as an advantage that he understood parts of Karl Jak’s uninque challeges, but he was certain that he was in way over his head this time. He needed to get out and regroup. Unfortunately, some voice he didn’t fully recognize shouted some nonsense about gods, destiny, and generic beasts from his side. Zedd abruptly turned to face Erik Vrell, only glancing briefly to the side to see that Violet had departed to continue doing what she could to save whoever else had survived this long. Apparently he was to deal with this nuisance alone. That was fine, because perhaps this annoying foe could answer his most pertinent question of all.

“Where did all of these children come from?” Zedd demanded as he marched forward, casually noticing as some anthropomorphic mouse fled the scene with a contingent of minors. He swore he saw some elsewhere, too. It confused him that so many youngsters had been let into the Danteverse, but it was no matter. This man appeared willing to lay his life down for them, and Zedd was never one to facilitate disappointment. He would see to that goal, for mercy’s sake.

Unfortunately, the man appeared to be unappreciative of that courtesy, wielding his weapon wildly as Zedd sighed in annoyance. It was a simple obstacle to overcome, but he would do so with the resilience he had displayed thus far. His left hand slowly rose and challenged his newest opponent to approach him.

“I’ll have you know, you insignificant worm, that I-”

Erik’s sword was driven through Zedd’s abdomen before he could finish his declaration, but it only elicited a heavier sigh from the demonic prime. He looked down at Erik’s determined and resolved expression, and was all too happy to drive the bladed end of his staff through the man’s chest in return. Erik recoiled from the impact, but Zedd was shocked to see him look back into his facemask with fiery determination. He would not be put down so easily. An admirable feat, but Zedd found himself annoyed beyond words that he had encountered yet another seemingly unkillable prime.

“Why is it that I can’t murder anyone with any simplicity?” Zedd demanded as he pulled Erik closer, their weapons remaining deep within each other’s chests.

Erik could only smile. He didn’t quite understand what asinine comment his partner would likely make about powers, proficiencies, and costs of things like “survival,” but he sure missed it while he dealt with this arrogant prime. He’d have loved to see the confusion in Zedd’s body language, as his face would be obviously the same level of stoic he was currently displaying.

Zedd shoved the man backwards, and they both struggled to retain their balance as an explosion rocked their impromptu battlefield. The floor gave out from beneath them, and they found themselves tumbling to a lower level. They landed in a narrow corridor; a tight space filled with electronics and machinery likely never intended to be encountered by any visitor to the Danteverse. Such an honor eluded the two as they raced back into battle.

“Know this, feeble warrior, I am the-”

Zedd once again stopped as a sword pierced his chest, pinning him to the wall. He gasped in disbelief as he looked back into the face of Kenpachi. The swordsman looked all too pleased to have this reunion with his disgustingly delighted grin. Zedd could only grunt in discontent.

“I thought I put you down!” Zedd roared as he ripped the sword from his body, backing away as Kenpachi pressed his attack only to impale the wall behind the fallen overlord.

“I wouldn’t dare leave this fight behind,” Kenpachi remarked with a frustratingly annoying grin. Zedd sensed a bit of hesitance in his voice, but obviously not enough to slow him down.

Kenpachi tore his weapon from the wall it had impaled, and quickly swung it forward once more. Zedd deflected the attack with his staff and threw a heavy elbow into the crazed warrior, knocking him to the side for a mere moment. He glanced to see that Erik knew the battle would rage on, and the man was retreating to presumably aid his friends. Zedd snapped his staff upwards and fired a lightning bolt in the man’s direction, only to see it sail aside when Kenpachi impaling him once again redirected his attack.

“Would you stop!?” Zedd roaded as he physically pulled the blade from his chest, shoving it aside. The ronin wasn’t put off by the deflection, and instead seemed pleased with the chain of events.

“I didn’t know it, but I was looking for you,” Kenpachi chuckled. “I knew someone like you would stop others from reaching those escape pods.”

“A fair assertion,” Zedd admitted. “For I need one as well.”

Kenpachi laughed as he stylishly twirled his sword before him, readying himself for the next series of blows. Zedd responded with a mere chuckle. It was only fitting of his time in the Danteverse that he didn’t end it in some grand brawl with countless foes whose powers reached unimagined heights, but instead in an intimate, familiar showdown. He would be happy to duel a foe he recognized one final time, for better or worse. He instinctively slammed his staff to the ground twice, announcing to the fleeing occupants of the realm that this is where the final bit of action would be.

Zedd roared in fury as he stepped forward, swinging his staff. Kenpachi was quick to deflect it and counter, but Zedd matched it just as swiftly. The intense exchange continued back and forth for a few moments, with Zedd beginning to rapidly appreciate the time he was losing in the rematch with this infuriating foe. Fortunately, an explosion ripped through the center of their brawl, hurling each warrior in opposite directions. Zedd slowly rose and looked around in bewilderment. Kenpachi was absent, for whatever fleeting amount of time before he emerged once more.

He didn’t see the other contestents, and he didn’t bother to look for them. There was no sign of Karl Jak, or any Underverse interlopers. He was floored by how little he truly grasped of this realm. He went back and forth in his grasp of what was the greater threat: Karl Jak or Diablo. All he knew was that it wasn’t him, as painful as it was to admit. He was done trying to prove that it would be in this collapsing world. Instead, he trudged back towards the pods, hoping Violet had finished her merciful crusade and was ready to leave. Zedd was sure of only one simple thing at this stage.

It was time to get the hell out of here.
[Image: zedd2018.png]
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#10
Dante’s Abyss 2018 Finale
Bandit With No Name, Sarah Kerrigan, Mickey Mouse, Kenpachi, Erik Vrell, Deadpool, Lord Zedd & Violet

Karl Jak smiled as the office around him shuddered.  He had left the production facility nearly thirty minutes prior, and when he oversaw the final preparations, he hadn’t expected the end results to be this wonderful.

“Focus,” he whispered as he stepped away from the window and made his way back to the terminal.  His first order of business had been to upload all the files from the local servers onto a Dataverse-accessible network.  Syntech had made all the preparations, but there was always a risk of something going wrong on the micro-scale.  Perhaps an employee got caught somewhere or failed to head to their extraction point on time.  Then there was the matter of the visitors that may not escape.  Part of the teleportation process involved secretly scanning and downloading a copy of them.

The executive producer hit the upload button and pushed his wheeled chair away from the desk.  As it spun, he sprung from it and made for the door.  On his way out, he snatched his jacket and slipped it on as he crossed the threshold.  By the time the door clicked shut, he was working on the top button.

“Let’s watch the show.”

***

Bandit and Kerrigan were making for the back of the station when they ran into a madman in a spandex suit.

“Hello, ladies,” Deadpool declared as he lazily slung his swords back and forth.  “You see a mouse lately?  He gave me the slip during one of the scene transitions, and I can’t seem to find him.”

“Out of the way,” Kerrigan muttered.  “We’ve got places to be.”

The Queen, her eyes emptied of the compassion and introspect she had offered to her companion just minutes earlier, strode toward the mercenary with the intention of walking through him.  She got to within three feet when one of the swords arched toward her face.  With a sneer, she recoiled and parried the strike with one of her clawed wings.  The matched blade swung up into her gut, and this time, she had to leap back to escape.

As Kerrigan moved back, the nameless marauder surged forward.  A fist crashed against the side of Deadpool’s face, and he felt his jaw pop out from a joint. Not a terrible loss, but the sparkling white dots that adorned his vision were a different story.  He dropped to his knees as a left cross hummed through the air above him.  The mouthy mercenary spotted a familiar glow in the mangled metal bits that made up the ‘limb’ and knew he didn’t want to fall victim to any secondhand Crash Magic.

Dropping a sword, Deadpool drew his sidearm and fired a round through the Bandit’s right kneecap.  Rather than howling and doubling over in pain, the woman surged forward and tackled him to his back.  One of her elbows crushed against the side of his head, and he quickly saw more stars.  A second punishing blow fractured the front of his skull, and for a brief moment, the mercenary thought he had lost consciousness.

Then – suddenly – salvation.  

“Are we good here?”  The asskicker inquired as she tilted her painted head.

Deadpool gurgled in response before managing to smack the side of his mouth and settle his mandible back into a working spot.  “I have not yet begun to fi—”

THWACK

Bandit’s strike fell with enough force to shatter the mercenary’s first cervical vertebra and sheer apart the skin and muscle that kept his head attached to the rest of his body.  The severed head rolled a few feet away before falling on its side.  The white eyes of the mask blinked a few times before going nonresponsive.

“Holy shit!”  Bandit shouted as she pointed at the head.  “You see that, Kerri?  The whole fucking head.  Right off.”  The woman turned and glanced at her nonplussed partner.  The queen of the zerg didn’t know the appropriate reaction as she watched the spandex-sheathed corpse wiggle gently beneath the bulk of the marauder.

“There’s no blood,” Kerrigan muttered.

“Probably some dumb prime shit,” Bandit replied.  The woman had started to swivel her head to glance at the neck stump when she caught the motion in her periphery too late.  Deadpool’s right arm had never let go of his sword, and in an instant, the weapon was buried to the hilt through the Bandit’s chest.

The Bandit’s eyes went wide as she instinctively shoved away from the corpse.

“Ass-kicker!”  Kerrigan shouted as she rushed to the aide of her partner.  She made it halfway before the gentle rumbling of the facility hit a sudden crescendo.  The whole word shuddered violently, and the infested terran lost her footing and fell sideways as parts of the ground started to break apart.  

Sword still imbedded through the chest plate of her trademark improvised armor, Bandit stumbled some more as the facility started to tear apart.  Her mind was torn between removing the weapon, trying to find stable ground, and figuring out what the fuck had just happened.  She saw the blood sputtering from the wound and imagined that one of her lungs was filling with blood.

One of her legs gave out and she collapsed to her knees just as she broke away from the ground, and the slab she now kneeled upon started to drift down into the unknown that enveloped the verse.  She caught a glimpse of Deadpool’s upright, headless body and the middle finger gesture of his left hand before the mercenary’s started to scoot backwards.

She heard a voice screaming for her.

Kerri?

Bandit turned her head but she was already out of sight.  She saw other pieces of the facility caught in the gentle, swirling embrace of the unknown forces rending the place apart.  If this was Karl Jak’s showmanship, he was one amazing bastard.  The nameless marauder smiled as she fell backwards onto the slab of concrete.

She wore that smile all the way into the bright unknown.

***

Mickey winced as his ankle dropped into a sudden fissure in the tiled floor of the facility.  He was certain he felt something twist, but he didn’t have the time to stop and feel sorry for himself.

Pillars toppled as the lobby continued to come apart.

Up ahead, Zedd and Erik were locked in combat.  The warlord’s staff and the former peasant’s psionic blades crashed together once again as the pair jockeyed for position.  

“Kenny!”  Mickey shouted, trying to be heard over the sounds of combat, the death throes of the facility, and the screams of the trapped visitors who had been left stranded in the Danteverse.  

***

Karl Jak knelt next to the small form and found its wrist.  He knew this body was especially durable, and despite having had half the library collapse onto it, there was no way this person wasn’t going to get back up.

The producer snapped the watch-like device onto the prone figure and tapped them on the head.

“You didn’t want to leave, so wake up and go be useful.”

With that, the man smiled and left to attend other business in the crumbling complex.

***

“Hurry up.” Deadpool’s severed head barked as he body lumbered over, plucked him up, and jammed him down onto his neck.  “There’s going to be a hell of a hangover in the morning,” he spoke aloud before turned and being impaled by the Queen of Blades’ eponymous appendages.

The mercenary swung his remaining sword and sank it into the zerg woman’s wing.  She swallowed any discomfort and proceeded to lift him up off his feet and hurtle him back toward the now crumbling portion of the floor.  Deadpool smacked onto the tiled surface and had to ditch his sword to the vast unknown in order to catch himself.  As he pulled himself up onto ‘solid’ ground, he caught sight of the mouse just before he crashed into the winged woman.

Kerrigan roared as she grabbed hold of Mickey’s collar and peeled his diminutive form off of her.

“You’re interrupting her vengeance with your vengeance, Mickey!”  Deadpool cheerfully shouted once he was on his feet again.  “Pretty sure you should both be gunning for me, since I’m pretty sure I committed a hate crime a little bit ago.”

Mickey summoned his keyblade but had to abruptly move to avoid the bullets that roared in his direction.

The Queen of Blades pressed onward—her eyes burning with fury as she pressed toward the gun totting mercenary.  Her fingers trembled as she focused her usually vast sea of psychic powers.  The many battles and the chaos of the facility’s demise had pushed Sarah Kerrigan to the brink of collapse, but she knew she had enough in her to destroy the smirking idiot who had taken the Ass-kicker from her.

Deadpool, despite what often came out of his mouth, wasn’t an idiot.  He knew when to get the fuck out of someone’s way, and he scrambled as the woman thrust her fists forward and release the psi blast.  Taxed just as much to his limits as his opponent, he couldn’t clear the attack in time, and part of the psychic energy crashed into his legs.  The mercenary did a 360 spin midair before crashing down to the floor.  He had little time to gather his breath, because he was soon bathed in a sickly yellow glow and found himself back up in the air.

Kerrigan lifted Deadpool high enough to make eye contact with the airborne lunatic.  “Don’t worry.  I’ll make sure you’re dead.”  She muttered before driving him down into the floor.  At some point, Deadpool was flipped over, because he hit with his back and spit a tiny fount of blood into the air as the tile and the underlying foundation cratered around him.  The Queen of Blades stepped forward onto the edges of the Wade Wilson-shaped hole and thrust her good wing blade down through his heart.  Wrenching it out after a few twists, she readied to gouge another hole in the cancer-addled antihero.

Instead, Sarah Kerrigan was struck with the fury of the yellow Kingdom Hearts.

The beam of righteous energy slammed into the zerg queen, who stood her ground even as the heat started to vaporize her flesh.  One of her wing blades broke apart, half of it melted beyond structural integrity.  She held her ground, defiant even as her right shoulder melted to the bone, and the limb that was attached to it fell.

At last, the mouse relented, and the yellow Kingdom Hearts faded.

The disfigured and broken Queen of Blades stared over at the triumphant King.

“Y… you didn’t finish it.”  She wheezed as she felt the ground break apart beneath her quivering legs.

“I didn’t need to,” Mickey muttered.  “I’m not a murderer, and you’re not going to hurt anyone ever again.”

Kerrigan bared what blackened teeth remained in her mouth as the ground collapsed under her and she was swallowed by the debris-filled vortex that tore at the facility.  

Mickey, for his part, dropped to his backside and tried to catch his breath.

#21 Bandit With No Name ELIMINATED
#35 Sarah Kerrigan ELIMINATED


6 Primes Remain


Bandit and Kerrigan may be deposited where they please.
[Image: KarlSig.jpg]
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#11
Dante’s Abyss 2018 Finale
Mickey Mouse, Kenpachi, Erik Vrell, Deadpool, Lord Zedd & Violet

Erik threw off Zedd.  The space-faring warlord didn’t stay detached for long.  He lashed out with another strike of the Z-staff that caught the younger fighter in the shoulder.

“Give up,” Zedd barked as he stepped back, leveled the staff, and fired a punishing bolt of electricity at his would-be adversary.  “You can’t defeat me.”

The cultist didn’t scream or cry out as the lightning danced across his lithe form.  He wouldn’t give ‘Lord’ Zedd the satisfaction.  Despite thinking deep down that the moment had come, Erik was more than okay with the sudden cessation of the thunderous assault.  Stooping down to recover Mageslayer, Erik looked to see that he had joined again by Kenpachi.  The hulking warrior sneered as he threw himself at Zedd, and the two proceeded to tumble and roll for a few feet before an explosion from the staff threw them apart.

“Help me, you fool!”  Zedd shouted to his partner, who had mostly remained outside of the scuffle between her partner and Erik.  The not-quite Violet remained passive for a few more lingering moments before she moved to help her ally.  She had little desire to shed blood, but they were also running out of time to secure an escape from this place.  For so long, Violet’s story had been written by demons and outside influences—she wasn’t going to stand by and wait for an ending to be authored without her consent.

The weapons in her hands would do little against primes, but that didn’t matter.  They could still hurt, and they could still draw blood.  She moved against Erik Vrell.  If he wanted to die today, she could begrudgingly oblige him.

For someone who had sought death moments earlier, Erik was surprisingly spry.  He smashed the blades from Violet’s hands and caught her across the stomach with the broad side of his weapon.  She stumbled back and fell into old habits.  Her fingers cupped together as she muttered beneath her breath.

“Kamehameha!”

The light blue beam of energy roared for a solid five yards before crashing against a psi wall.

Erik maintained the psychic bulwark until he felt the last vestiges of the beam fade.  He dropped the wall and promptly had to maneuver away as Violet tried to push the fight.  A ball of ki crashed into his face, and then another quickly smacked into his knee.  A third fell harmlessly against Mageslayer, giving the cultist a short moment to sidestep.  Violet went passed him, but as she twisted her body to get at him, Erik punched at her with a psi blade.  The ethereal weapon glided easily through the skin beneath her left collarbone.

Violet howled in pain and managed to hurl a ball of ki into Erik’s face before her opponent followed up with any additional offense.

In the background, a chunk of the facility—the library, based on the sea of books now drifting in the vortex—broke apart.

“Don’t stop now,” Erik whispered as he swung Mageslayer.

***

Zedd saw his partner failing to defeat the child, and he felt fresh indignation swell within his fleshless carcass.

“Begone, you lumbering hulk,” he raged as he slammed an elbow in Kenpachi’s cheek.  “My flight is boarding.”

Another strike dazed Kenpachi long enough for Zedd to get out from under the warrior and scurry up to his feet.  The staff was too far away, so the space warlord drew a dagger that sported green accents on its stout blade.

Gunshots prevented Zedd from lunging and cutting open Kenpachi’s throat.

The bullets failed to hit any intended target, but they pulled the pair of warrior’s focus to Deadpool, who stood just a few yards away and seemed mildly amused.

“Why aren’t your heads exploded?”  The mercenary scowled.  “Do I have nerve damage?”  He added in a softer tone as he poked at his gun wrist.  “Refractory period is over… shouldn’t be an is—”

A keyblade crashed onto the mercenary’s head, and he lost his grip on the world for a few moments.

***

Kenpachi grinned as Deadpool toppled into a spandex heap, and the little mouse bounded over the mercenary a beat later.

Zedd quickly realized he was outmatched in the current situation.  He realized he was grossly outmatched when Kenpachi slammed the ground and triggered some sort of hellish energy shockwave to come roaring across the already unstable floor.  Throwing himself to the wayside, he landed in an awkward heap.  The dagger had been lost and had skittered to parts unknown, which left him weaponless against the tiny terror and his oversized partner.

“Your friend over there is in danger!”  Zedd boomed as he pointed a finger toward Erik in an attempt to appeal to the simpleton’s saccharine supply of goodness.  The tiny, large-eared idiot was duped, but a smiling Kenpachi simply came rumbling across the room without a passing glance behind him.

As Zedd tried to avoid a confrontation, Violet tried to put an end to Erik’s seemingly unquenchable drive.

While her left arm throbbed, the woman had managed to pick up a piece of twisted steel that had come loose from the ceiling.  That aforementioned piece was now melded into her forearm as she slashed and stabbed at Erik.  The cultist, initially unaware of his foe’s bizarre power, had taken a few cuts, but he had adapted quickly.  Violet was a cunning foe, but she wasn’t trained to fight with the impromptu sword, which gave Erik an edge.  He kept her on her toes, and gradually, he backed her up toward the corner of the hanger area.  If he could just pin her in, he could end…

Violet suddenly stepped back, and instead of smacking against the wall, she seemed to melt through it.

Mageslayer smashed against the solid surface and nearly bounced back into its owner’s face.

Someone else may have been unnerved, but Erik had his own tricks.  His body shimmered before fading into a deep purple silhouette, and he phased through the wall.  On the other side, he emerged and became corporeal just in time to intercept a downward sword slash.  Rather than peel back for another attempt, the shard of metal slipped out of the woman’s anatomy.

Erik hopped back and scowled as Violet sidestepped back through the wall.  He clenched Mageslayer and pursued, his incorporeal form phasing through just moments after the woman.  He emerged and manifested physically, but saw nothing around him.

Schnick.

The cultist grimaced at the sound of twisted metal tearing out through his stomach.  He didn’t need to look down to verify that he had been stabbed through the wall.

Violet stepped out from the wall and looked at the bloodstained end of the steel piece.  The look on her face betrayed little, but it wasn’t a gleeful or pleased expression she wore.

“I feel like I should say something,” the woman muttered.  “There’s a lot, I think… I can say here.”

“Save your sorrow for someone else, mongrel.”  Erik whispered with a faint, blood-spattered smile.

With that, Erik Vrell sagged forward and was gone.

***

Kenpachi caught Zedd trying to sidestep.  The Death God scooped up the fleshless space warrior and threw him threw the nearest wall.  With Zedd momentarily out of the picture, Kenpachi turned to his partner and crouched down.  “Did you find her, Mick?”

The mouse’s eyes went wide.  “Yes, but I… I think I lost her back in the lobby,” Mickey felt flashbacks to little Suzie, but before he could go sprinting away, the partners heard the familiar squelch of bloodstained booties on the tile floor.

“Let’s stop transitioning and just end this scene right here,” Deadpool rambled as he lifted his gun.  His other hand was behind his back, but the focus of the pair was on the gun aimed at their heads.  Mickey even flinched when he saw the red finger pull on the trigger.

Click!

Deadpool tilted his head and then gave a quick shrug of his shoulders.  "Stay calm, Everyone!  It’s just a distraction from this!

Mickey and Kenpachi recoiled as the tiny animal bounced across the ground before coming to a stop between them.

“Hi, Friends!”  Furbypool chirped.

Before the mouse could react, Kenpachi batted Mickey away and dropped down atop the explosive.  Furbypool exploded, lifting Kenpachi nearly a foot off the ground and still managing to punch a few pillars of flame up through his back before the hulking man settled into a rapidly expanding pool of blood.

“Kenny!”  Mickey shouted as he scrambled over to the face of the dying man.

“Save her.”  Kenpachi whispered as the light started to fade from his eyes.  “Be the hero you’re supposed to be.”  With that, the big man slumped into the sanguine pool and moved no more.

#12 Erik Vrell DEAD
#41 Kenpachi DEAD


4 Primes Remain

Erik Vrell and Kenpachi will respawn at the Fountain of Infinity in 7 OOC days.
[Image: KarlSig.jpg]
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#12
Dante’s Abyss 2018 Finale
Mickey Mouse, Deadpool, Lord Zedd & Violet

“Did you see the flames?  They tore up through his fucking body, and he still had enough in him to groan out some dying inspiration.  That’s such a mark of excellence… how fucking good is that guy?”

“Why are you always the one who lives?”  Mickey muttered as he summoned his keyblade and glared at the mercenary.

“I sleep a lot.  Beauty rest is great for stuff like this.  More months, the better.  I mean… what have you been doing in the downtime?”

Mickey lunged.

The cancer-addled mercenary spun lazily out of his old foe’s path of attack.  He swung his pistol down and almost squeezed the trigger when a wiry little tail smacked his wrist.  The bullet ricocheted off the floor and into oblivion as Deadpool felt the ground sway under him.  Mickey, bum ankle and all, had already started to move forward toward the two shuttles.

“Not a chance,” Violet shouted as she intercepted the mouse.

A blast of ki smashed into the ground by Mickey’s feet as he spun and leapt once more.  The king threw himself into the former Red Ribbon officer’s chest, crashing into her like a fury little cannonball.  He felt a whoosh of air from her mouth as the air was momentarily knocked out of her lungs.  While Violet teetered, Mickey landed smoothly and willed his keyblade back into his hand.  He lined up the shot and fired a barrage of pearls at the stunned warrior.

If Deadpool had been alert on on-point, he could have had a chance for a ‘pearl necklace’ joke, but unfortunately for all of his viewing crowd, the mercenary had been knocked down by a bolt of lightning from an errant space lord.

Mickey Mouse felt no ill will toward the purple-haired woman, but she stood between him and one of the lifeboats.  He owed it to Kenny to ‘deal’ with this lady and save the dead warrior’s young companion.  Surely, a pair of small-statured individuals could escape in one of the shuttles together.  Moving forward, the king swung the keyblade low and landed a blow on the woman’s ankle.  She swayed but swallowed down a yelp as she stepped forward and swung her good foot up into her tiny foe’s face.

“I’ve been doing the fighting thing for what feels like forever,” the former assassin spoke as she pursued a mouse who now had to retreat to avoid a series of ki blasts.  “Shit, I loved a monster made of bubblegum and a sexless green alien.” As Mickey hopped to avoid a pair of spherical attacks, Violet cupped her palms and immediately started to charge the next assault.  “But I can’t remember anything as absurd as a talking mouse with a giant key… KAMEHAMEHA!”

The king grimaced as he swung the keyblade to try and deflect part of the beam.  His weapon absorbed a smidge before he lost his grip and it faded.  By the time Mickey had regained his senses, he had been driven countless yards backward, and the yawning oblivion was just behind his position.  Scrambling quickly to get to stable ground, he made it to his feet and stole a glance at the strange melee between the red, skinless Zedd and the psychopath in red spandex.  

The two were rolling around on the ground shouting naughty insults between fists and elbows.

As entertaining as the tussle had to be, Mickey had to throw himself to avoid a second beam of energy.  When he rose once again, he broke into another maddening sprint—his fingers clenched around the keyblade as he front flipped over a trio of ki blasts and landed within striking distance of Violet.

“You’re resilient,” she muttered as she leashed a kick that managed to loosen the keyblade from its wielder’s grip.  “But I’ve survived the worst this place can muster, and I know that we can endure you.”  She added before dropping to the ground and literally soaking the tiles beneath her up into her limbs.

Imbued with concrete limbs, Violet caught the mouse by surprise with a punishing, concrete-infused combination.  Caught off-guard by the onslaught, Mickey was quickly overwhelmed by the array of punishing strikes.

Violet sneered as she stepped back from the stunned and bruised mouse.  Mickey vision drifted in and out of focus as he stared down at the pool of blood that had dribbled from his nose and mouth.

“Don’t get back up,” Violet spoke before stepped forward and swinging her leg up into her foe’s chest and face.  The blow sent an already staggered mouse to his back, but despite keeping a tenuous grip on consciousness, Mickey rolled himself over and got his knees and hands under his trembling form.  “Stay down!”  The woman shouted.  “I’m not in the mood to kill you, but you aren’t taking that shuttle.”

“Staying down isn’t in my nature,” Mickey muttered despite being unable to lift his head up to address the woman eye-to-eye.  He saw her shadow fall over him and braced himself for another thunderous strike.

Instead, Violet stepped away.

Mickey managed to look up and saw the woman shake her head.  “You’re already done.”

“Not as long as there’s a beating heart in my chest.”

Violet opened her mouth to talk, but her words were drown out by the sudden bark of a pistol.  

A series of holes opened up along her chest as a gun-toting Deadpool strode up behind his longtime rival and emptied the rest of his clip into the woman’s chest and stomach.  Eyes wide with shock, Violet fell back onto the rear of the shuttle.  The concrete augmentations started to drip off of his limbs as she swayed closer to death’s door.  “Unreal,” she whispered as she clenched her fingers and tried to resist the urge to closer her eyes and go to sleep.

After blowing the smoke from the barrel of the weapon, he looked down and gave a thumbs up to the mouse. “Nice feint, Rodent.  We got her real good.”

“I’m… through with you!” Mickey growled as fresh adrenaline screamed through his veins.  He swung around, summoned the keyblade, and bashed its handle against the mercenary’s kneecap.  Deadpool swore as he fell backwards, giving the mouse enough time to reach his feet and aim his weapon.  A yellow heart shimmered before the tip of the weapon before the beam of golden energy roared into the madman’s chest.

Mickey lowered the weapon and stared apathetically at the twitching form that now lay a dozen or so yards away.  He knew he had to ‘finish’ this job, because Deadpool wasn’t dead until he was erased entirely.  As the mouse started toward the foul-mouthed mercenary, he heard the roar of an engine.  Spinning, he stared – dumbstruck – as one of the shuttles hummed to life.  While the side of the vessel was still splashed with Violet’s blood, the woman’s body was gone.

The mouse clasped the keyblade and took aim, but the shuttle was already free from the collapsing facility before he could pull the metaphorical trigger.

In the shuttles cockpit, a brutally injured Violet winced as she turned the ship to autopilot and lurched and stumbled toward the medical station. Good luck, Zedd.

The remaining lifeboat remained idle even as what remained of the facility’s roof tore apart and was drawn into the spiraling vortex.  

#37 Violet ESCAPED

3 Primes Remain

Violet may be deposited where she chooses.
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#13
Dante’s Abyss 2018 Finale
Mickey Mouse, Deadpool & Lord Zedd

There were two of them now.

Zedd watched his partner escape and didn’t know if he should feel pleased or indignant.  The shuttles could only fit a person, and she must have found an opportunity.

He had to make sure the other ship left with him on it.

The mouse had been moving toward the twitching carcass.  Was the rodent that driven that he needed to obliterate what was clearly a dead body so thoroughly?  Lord Zedd sneered behind his face plate as he obliterated the mouse with a well-aimed bolt of lightning.

Mickey recovered quickly and dumped all thought of Deadpool as he had to scamper to escape more strikes from the cackling space warrior.

“Scurry, Rodent!”  Zedd boomed as arcs of lightning tore apart the tiled floor and threatened to ravage the beleaguered king.

The perpetual cock blocker that he was, Deadpool found his window and sent a bullet through Zedd’s chest.

The masked villain stumbled and turned his gaze to the mercenary, who was now missing most of his costume’s upper half.  Despite being freshly regenerated, the skin was sickly and grotesque.

“You’re hideous,” Zedd shouted.

Deadpool tilted his head. “Did I just get my good looks insulted by the dude with no skin and a Jason Voorhees face?”

Z-Staff in his hands, Lord Zedd backed up as Mickey regained his footing and reclaimed his weapon.  The skinless warrior glanced at both of the remaining primes—the Idiot and the Rodent.  Standing in a loose triangle, the trio eyed each other with weapons drawn.  A staff, one pistol, and an oversized key stood primed.

“I heard this type of standoff is illegal in America.” Deadpool quipped.

“That’s enough from you!”  Zedd and Mickey pivoted and fired at the mercenary, who had a brief, record-scratching moment in which to realize he had fucked up before a bolt of lightning and stream of pearls ragdolled him across the crumbling structure.  The mercenary bumped and skidded before coming to a stop against a section of broken wall.

He stayed where he was for a short while as he watched another of the facility’s domes literally implode into itself.  Mr. Wilson hadn’t been keeping track, but there wasn’t much left.  The hanger and the surrounding area seemed to be slowly separating from larger part of the facility, which was crumbling worse than a booby-trapped steel skyscraper.

Deadpool removed from the equation, Zedd strode forward and swung low in an attempt to sweep the mouse off into oblivion.  Despite the space warrior’s speed, the injured and battered Mickey was quicker still.  The keyblade shimmered before belching a punishing spray of flames against the fleshless monster.  Landing on his feet, Mickey leveled the weapon and suppressed a faint grin as he summoned down a bolt of lightning onto the madman.

Even as Zedd toppled backwards, Deadpool moved in and tackled Mickey.

The two rivals rolled a few feet before plunging down onto a separate part of the facility.  A swift kick from Mickey bought the two a moment of separation and the chance to realize they had fallen.  The mouse sprung forward—bad leg and all—and scrambled up Wade’s back.  An attempt to leap from the mercenary’s shoulders went south when Deadpool smacked the cartoon out of the air.

Instead of a witty one-liner, the perpetual Dante’s Abyss contestant drew his pistol.  He couldn’t squeeze off a round before a ball of ice smashed into his hand and knocked the weapon from his grip.  A curse word formed on the cancerous man’s lips, but he never got it out.  The damn mouse ran up him and was gone, his tiny little form landing on a fucking flying carpet that ushered him up to a platform that now resided five or six stories above Deadpool’s head.

As Deadpool skulked, he heard a suave voice call out to him.  “You know this wouldn’t have happened to Boba Fett.”

The mercenary spun and saw a grinning man in a purple suit standing at the entrance to what had once been the training area of the preshow facility.  Karl Jak seemed undisturbed by the calamity as he walked over to the mercenary and set an arm around Deadpool’s slumped shoulders.  “Don’t worry, Mr. Wilson.  It’s never really the end.”

“It feels like it.”

“Just for now,” Karl muttered as they both looked up at the chunk that held the shuttle bay and one of the last remaining domes.  “Just for now.”

“Will it hurt, Karl?”

“This isn’t your first time,” Karl replied with a coy smile.  “It shouldn’t hurt.”  He added as the piece of dome they floated upon shuddered and broke away.  The yawning oblivion beneath them started to devour what stood around them.  Deadpool didn’t bother to look down.  He didn’t need to steal a gaze to know that their time was running short.

“You’re not Karl, are you?”

Karl furrowed his brow.  “I mean, we’re all Karl.”

The Karl.  You don’t have the right smell.  The one from a few years ago, before the crazy ‘heroes’ of the Omniverse forced him to retire to a beach and outsource his operations to himselves.”

“That doesn’t make sense.”

“It’s the Omniverse.”

“Touché.”

“So where is my Karl Jak?”

“He had some work to do.  Important work.  Game-changing.  He apologizes that he couldn’t see your game, sport, but I don’t think you’ve seen the last of him.”

Deadpool nodded as the ground shuddered beneath them.  “Hold me tight, Karl,” the mercenary whispered as he drew the producer in close to him.

“I’ll never let go,” Karl whispered as the platform gave way and the entwined twosome plunged into the unknown.

***

Mickey soared up over the hanger.  He saw Lord Zedd prepping the shuttle for final departure and knew that this was his last chance to secure the shuttle, find Yachiru, and get the heck out of this place.  The mouse eyed the park dome, which was still tenuously attached to the shuttle area.  The surviving secondaries had fled there, and he only hoped that he would be able to find Kenny’s companion alive and well once he dealt with Zedd.

“I SEE YOU, RODENT!”  Suddenly, a bolt of lightning tore through the magic carpet, and Mickey found himself plummeting back down to the platform.

Although the mouse managed to land in a roll, he didn’t have the time to avoid the staff blow that crashed against the side of his head.  Sent into yet another gosh-darn tumble, Mickey tried and failed to stop his own momentum.  Instead, it was an upturned tile that saved him by virtue of his tiny spine wrapping around it.

Crying out, the mouse glance at his palm and tried to summon the keyblade.  Yet, his fingers couldn’t form a fist.

“No…” Mickey whispered as he saw Lord Zedd stalking toward him.  “Come on,” he spoke softly to himself as he tried to will his beaten little body into action.

“You’re done,” the masked warrior taunted.

“…not a chance,” Mickey wheezed as he lifted his other hand and aimed the keyblade at Zedd.  “Got’cha, fella.”

The resulting burst of ice tore the metal mask off of Zedd’s face, causing the warrior to howl out in rage and agony as he nearly lost his balance.

Despite wearing a smirk on his face, Mickey couldn’t get up.  He was out of second chances.  The deformed visage of Zedd twisted to face him, and the venom in the man’s voice was real.

“Game over!” Lord Zedd screamed as he drove the bladed butt of the staff down through the mouse’s outstretched palm.  Before Mickey could cry out from that new pain, the galactic villain sent a burst of lightning down through the staff and into the tiny prime’s body.  Pinned to the ground, the king could do little but writhe and scream in agony until Zedd relented.

“Go die with the other imbeciles,” Lord Zedd growled as he inverted the staff and used the broad end to sweep Mickey through the broken entrance to the park dome.

With the Rodent dispatched, Zedd returned to prep the lifeboat.

***

He didn’t know how long he lost consciousness.

All he knew was that he was woken by a gentle shaking of his shoulders.  The king opened his eyes and saw a boy with a head of short, unkempt brown hair.  The blue eyes that stared down at Mickey Mouse were familiar.

“…Blues?”  The boy stood up, and it was then that the mouse saw the familiar red armor and gray body suit wrapped around his companion.  “Am… am I dead?”

The unhelmeted android shook his head.  “You were knocked out.  You okay?  Can you see straight?”

Seeing as how there were now three or four preteen machines swirling in front of Mickey’s face, he shook his head.  “I… I can think, but my eyes are all googly.”

“Probably a concussion,” Proto Man whispered as he gestured for someone to come over and look at Mickey.  It was a young man with crooked black spectacles and messy brown hair who craned his neck to examine the anthropomorphic mouse’s head and neck.

“Looks okay.”

“Can you be sure?”  Proto Man asked.

“I told you I’m not a doctor, right?  I studied ecology, not humanoid rodent anatomy.”

“What’s going on?”  Mickey whispered as he was helped into an upright position.  “Were are we, and why the heck are you here?  They evacuated the primes.”

“I stayed.”  Proto Man replied matter-of-factly.  “You think I was going to leave without my best friend?  Plus, people tend to stop telling you what to do when you aim a gun at their face.  I’m sorry I couldn’t help you, but when the place started to fall apart, I ran into some trouble.  I held up the bar dome as it was collapsing… to try and let all the people get to safety in time.  I wound up being crushed for a while.  I’m still not sure how I’m back on my feet, but I have this he spoke as he pointed to something blurry on his wrist.”

“I can’t really see it.”  Mickey spoke softly.

“It’s a recall device of some kind, from what I can figure.  I can’t tell where it’s linked to, but I don’t think it’s somewhere in this verse.”

“It could take us to something terrible like the Underverse,” Mickey replied as his vision started to come into focus.  The mouse looked around and saw that there was about two dozen secondaries grouped into the roofless remnants of the dome.  A distant hum caused the mouse to turn, and he saw a ship depart from the remains of the hanger area.  It looked as if they had drifted miles from that location… how long had Mickey been out cold?

“It’s worth a bet, isn’t it?”  Proto Man whispered as he took his friends bloody, broken hand.  “Anything is better than dying here in this place, right?  Wherever we wind up, we will still have each other, and that’s the most important thing.  More important than all the other noise and nonsense.”

“You sure?”  Mickey asked as his friend pulled him into a soft hug.

“Always.”  Proto Man replied with a warm smile as he let go and held up his hand.  “You ready?”  The preteen machine turned to the others.  “Everyone come together and lay a hand on someone… Get close, this might be a bumpy ride.”

Mickey looked around as the secondaries formed a tight group around the pair of small primes.  In the crowd, the mouse spotted Kenny’s small companion, but he couldn’t meet her wide, unknowing eyes.  That conversation would have to wait a little longer.

“To the next adventure,” Proto Man said with a smile.

“To the next adventure,” Mickey replied with a few tears in the corner of his eyes as the group vanished in a burst of white light.

#20 Deadpool ELIMINATED
#16 Mickey Mouse ELIMINATED


1 Prime Remains

Deadpool can deposit where he desires.
Mickey can deposit where he desires.
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#14
Dante’s Abyss 2018 Finale
Lord Zedd

Lord Zedd sneered as he looked into the vid screen and watched the last vestige of the facility collapsed into the yawning maw of oblivion.

“Goodnight, you idiots,” he wheezed as he rested his head.  Finally, a moment to rest and enjoy the silence.  No drama.  No intense emotional outbursts.  No more violence or hand-wringing or sleepless nights.  He had just earned himself the best damn vacation that money couldn’t buy.  Perfect, enjoyable quiet, with no primes or secondaries to infuriate him.

And just like that, a gratingly saccharine voice chimed in over the speakers inside the cockpit.

“Congratulations to #05 Lord Zedd. You are the winner of Dante’s Abyss, and our illustrious Grand Champion.”  At the sound of Karl Jak’s voice, a compartment opened beneath Zedd’s seat that contained a championship belt and a small blue gem housed in a gold-plated metal glove.

“The shuttle will take you to the coordinates that you desire.  Simply enter them, and you’ll be prompted to record a nice message to our viewers before being piloted to your destination!”

“Screw you,” Zedd growled as he reached out with both of his hands and tore out the speakers.  Discarded the handfuls of scrap, he set his head back on the seat and clicked on the autopilot.  He would figure out the manual flight systems when he felt like it.

For now, he needed a nap and a long break from all the idiots of the Omniverse.

00 Primes Remains

#05 Lord Zedd WINS


Lord Zedd may deposit where he desires.
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