Enter the Larry: Part 2

Larry shrugged, raising his hand as he said, “I won’t try to. If he’s green and can’t handle it, it’s not my fault.”

Joe leaned forward, “I know, but you can make it harder or you can make it easier. So, make it work. Besides, everything I’ve heard about him is good. He’s just new.”

“I wasn’t saying I wouldn’t work with him. So, what’s the plan?”

“Well,” Joe frowned for a moment, “they’re not telling us everything—“

Larry laughed, and said, “As usual.”

“But,” Joe continued, “here’s what I know. Metafight Games owns an island. It’s just outside US territorial waters near Florida, so technically the Feds don’t have any jurisdiction. On the other hand, no country claims it, and the owners of Metafight Games are US citizens, so I’m sure the Feds think they can get away with more than usual.”

Joe smiled and said, “This whole mission exists because of the confusing jurisdiction issues and because of what Metafight Games is—“

“Supers fighting supers,” Larry said. “Heard about them.”

“Right. Part of what the government’s worried about is Armory selling his stuff to anybody who wants it, but they’re also worried about the Soviets. I know they’ve been showing the fights on cable, but rich and connected people see the fights in person. The administration’s worried that they might be recruiting or blackmailing people.”

Larry shook his head. “Sex, greed, and gambling debts?”

Joe grinned briefly. “The usual.”

“Damn, man. The KGB? I see why they’re pulling in the Feds, but why me?”

“Well, they wanted me, but I managed to persuade them that you’d be great for this.”

“Okay, why’d they want you? I mean, beyond you being a living legend and all.”

Joe raised his eyebrow at the words “living legend,” and leaned back into the couch. “We police our own. They know we both worked with Armory. Officially, you’ll be going down there to tell him to stop selling copies of his armor. Unofficially, they’re hoping you’ll take out the whole operation.”

“Where’d they get that idea?”

Joe grinned. “Remember that Outfit hitter? Deadeye? You took out his whole base.”

“It was packed with explosives. That was mostly his fault.”

“What about that guy with the powersuit? The one that controlled fire? You took him out, his lab, and the field around it.”

“Immolator? I cornered him. Can’t think of any other way it could have gone.”

“Pacifier?”

“OK, that was my fault. I never would have expected a guy with a baby themed costume would have that much nitroglycerine.”

“Mount Saint Helens?”

Larry cocked his head, and thought about it. “Look, I don’t know how you found out about the earth spirit fight, but I doubt the volcano erupted any earlier because of me. Besides, it was attacking a bus full of kids.”

Joe blinked. “Larry, I was joking about Mount Saint Helens. When did you even have time to fight anything? We were barely out of each other’s sight.”

“Remember when you went to that meeting after breakfast on the second day?”

Joe looked down toward the couch’s armrest, and then looked back up. “I do now. I’d always wondered how you got so dirty… Anyway, all they’re really hoping is that you might bring a few of the leaders back to the US where they can be questioned and prosecuted, but a couple Feds were joking that if you only left a crater behind they’d be okay with that.”

* * *

Two days later, Larry found himself flying south in a DC-3. They picked up Agent Lim in Tampa, Florida.

Lim turned out to be around Larry’s age—mid-twenties with short, black hair, and wearing a black suit. When Larry stood up, he found that he was about six inches taller—which meant Lim was a little under six feet. Larry wasn’t sure which of them had the worse deal. Lim had to wear a suit in seventy degree weather, and he had to wear a full body,  grey “flightsuit” (even though his armor didn’t fly) and a mask so that no one recognized him when he was out of armor.

Lim held out his hand. “Agent Isaac Lim, FBI. Nice to meet you.”

Larry decided that he definitely had the worse part of the deal. Lim probably liked wearing a suit.

Larry said, “Hey, good to meet you, I’m Larry.”

Lim looked him up and down, and said, “I don’t suppose you’ve got two brothers named Darryl, do you?”

Not managing even a fake laugh, Larry said, “I still haven’t seen that show, but I’m looking forward to whenever it goes off the air.”

Lim said, “Newhart’s pretty funny. You should take a look once. Anyhow, let’s get down to business.  You won’t be able to talk to Armory unless you’re a contestant, so we’re entering you in the games. I’ve got the $50,000 entrance fee in my briefcase. Let’s go over a few things before we land.”

14 thoughts on “Enter the Larry: Part 2”

  1. As I imagine it, they were there to help evacuate (since people did know beforehand), but fighting the earth spirit may have made it happen sooner.

  2. Larry’s reaction to the Newhart joke is priceless.

    Oh, and I forgot to mention last episode, kudos on the dog’s names. Even if we knew nothing about Larry up to that point, we’d have a pretty good idea after that.

    Hg

  3. First a typo – there’s an extra “because” in this sentence “Joe smiled and said, “This whole mission exists because because of the confusing jurisdiction issues and because of what Metafight Games is—“”

    Second a word on Mt St Helens. Very well done. The predictions my parents saw were for it to go later on May 18th… not 8am-ish. Now that I know the “truth” (it was Larry’s fault), I can tell my Mom she can stop worrying about having prayed/hoped it would go earlier and we’d get to see it as we drove south. It was quite spectacular. 🙂

  4. “When Larry stood up to meet him, he found that Lim was about six inches shorter than he was—a little under six feet.”

    Does that mean that Larry is a little under six feet and Lim is six inches shorter than that, or that Larry is this huge guy who is well over six feet tall and Lim is the one who’s a little under six feet?

  5. Hg: I was a little nervous about including the Newhart joke as it might go right over the heads of anyone who didn’t live through the 1980’s.

    Also, naming the dogs after Sid Vicious (of the Sex Pistols) and Nancy (his girlfriend, kind of) amused me too. That was another, “Wonder if anyone will notice” thing for me though.

    Notto: Typo fixed. As for Mt. St. Helens… I was a little nervous about including that one too because while on the one hand, it seemed funny to me. On the other hand, people did die, and I hoped that no one who’d lost somebody was actually reading this story.

    Also, thanks. Hope your Mom feels better…

    Matthew: And here’s how comments improve the story… I just rewrote that so that it’s hopefully clearer (Larry’s taller than 6 feet. Lim’s slightly shorter). Let me know if it works.

  6. Well… that’s definitely clearer…. but it doesn’t seem to flow like the rest of your writing. And you were right, as I read it I realized I hadn’t understood what Larry was wearing.

  7. Sometimes you just have to blow shit up, right Larry? And let this be a lesson, that uncomfortable weight in your baby’s diaper may be nitroglycerine, so always detonate your kids from a safe distance.

  8. The sentence about what Larry’s wearing is now an interesting sentence, ie good. The height sentence hmmmm….. but you can revise it before this becomes a book…. For now I just want you to work on the next chapter where Larry reacts (Dare I guess goes through the roof) at having to enter as a participant in the games.

  9. How much do you want to bet that the whole thing is actually Larry’s sponsors leaning on the government to figure out how their investment can actually see some return, i.e. how their logos can be made to see the light of day. It doesn’t seem like Larry is really going out and doing anything at the moment and now he’s just happening to be sent into a place filled with cameras specifically so he can fight. I’ll keep you in the right direction if I can, but that’s all. Just follow the money.

  10. GREAT ANTLERED GODS. That Newhart joke. I occasionally reference it out loud, for real. And seeing as my friend group and I are between 22 and 27, no one but me gets it. What even. Did not expect. Cannot compute. Brain has melted.

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