Tag Archives: Joe Vander Sloot

When It’s Over: Part 5

Trying not to let fear affect him, Joe said, “It’s not a trick. I don’t have any more to trick you with than you already see.”

The creature stepped toward him, and Joe decided against stepping back. They were more likely to attack if you showed fear. He’d learned that at least from the Abominators’ attachment to hierarchy.

If you acted like you were above them, they might attempt to throw you down, but they’d at least have to consider the possibility that you outranked them. If you were lucky, they’d submit out of ingrained habit.

The giant covered the forty foot distance in all too few steps. He stopped only ten feet away, forcing Joe to look up.

Continue reading When It’s Over: Part 5

When It’s Over: Part 4

“Rocket,” the man said, “I am here for your execution.”

Joe landed in the lot, facing the giant. As he looked up, he wished he’d brought heavier weaponry. He had a bad feeling he wouldn’t be bringing this guy down with a solid punch, or even the now weaponized sonics.

He took a breath. Maybe he’d get lucky. For now he’d try to talk the giant into surrender, or at least into leaving.

“How about we postpone the execution for a little while? I’ve got a few questions I’d like to ask you, and maybe you’ve got a few questions you’d like to ask me.”

The giant raised his arm, the one with the black bracer, and said, “No, you will die now.”

Continue reading When It’s Over: Part 4

When It’s Over: Part 3

“Heroes League,” he said. He’d left it set to “Rocket voice.” There couldn’t be any doubt who’d answered.

The person on the other end gasped. “Excuse me? Sir? I’m Officer Smythe of the Grand Lake police force, and there’s a man flying through downtown. He’s been asking for the Heroes League, and Captain Schwarz told me to call you.”

Joe frowned. “Is there something wrong with the flying man? Should I be worried?”

Officer Smythe paused. “I… I don’t know, sir, but he’s big. Maybe twelve feet tall, and he doesn’t look happy.”

“Do you have any idea who he is? I know a lot of flying people these days.”

Smythe gave a short laugh. “No. I’ve never seen this guy.”

Joe had the feeling that Smythe was a rookie. Continue reading When It’s Over: Part 3

When It’s Over: Part 2

The League jet still dripped water even though they’d stepped out of it two hours ago. It stood inside a huge room made of gray concrete. A car that resembled a black 1965 Corvette had been parked next to two motorcycles, one normal, and the other red, white, and blue.

Metal shelving ran across the walls, holding tools and spare parts.

Joe stood in the hangar, still wearing the Rocket suit. He’d expected to be done by now, but he had to admit that he probably shouldn’t have. They’d packed the League jet practically to the top of the cargo bay.

It was like moving, but only if your house had been stocked with alien artifacts created for the purpose of destroying alien civilizations and bending what was left to your will.

A man in bulky, gray armor exited the jet’s cargo bay. Even if Joe hadn’t known his name, the horn extending from the mask hinted at his codename.

Joe could have called him “Rhino,” but opted with, “Hey Larry, is that what I think it is?”

Continue reading When It’s Over: Part 2

Enter the Larry: Part 22

The seat must have been designed assuming that the Frog suit would have a load of missiles on board when it blew up because it shot him far into the air. He found himself far on the other side of the hangar as the Frog suit exploded.

Because it was behind him, he didn’t see the explosion directly. The afternoon became brighter, giving a reddish-white tinge to the hotels, sidewalks, and palm trees. Black smoke followed—along with flying debris.

Larry felt something small hit the back of the ejection seat, but managed to keep control of the seat’s flight. He redirected the seat lower, and flew down toward the hangar, landing in front of it.

He gave a passing glance to the earth elemental’s body as he got out of the chair. It covered the runway in a pile of smoking rubble—dirt, rocks, and gravel. Its head and limbs were still intact even though its body had lost its shape. That bothered Larry, and he stopped to make sure that it wasn’t moving. After a moment, he was satisfied, and he stepped toward the hangar.

He couldn’t see much inside. It was dark, and the black smoke made it appear even darker. Continue reading Enter the Larry: Part 22

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.” Continue reading Enter the Larry: Part 2

Enter the Larry: Part 1

March, 1984—No doubt about it, Larry thought, the kitchen sink’s plugged. Worse, he didn’t have a snake that would fit through the little holes in the goddamn drain.

Both sides of the sink were filled nearly to the top with water. Annoying. And their drains shared the same pipe—which would make it just a little more difficult.

He decided to start with the plunger anyway. If he got nowhere he could still open up the pipes. It’d probably be what he’d do in the end anyway. He thought about that, and considered grabbing a wrench and cutting out a step. Then he reconsidered. He’d try the plunger first, and maybe it would work.

The stupid plunger.

An hour later, he found himself putting a bucket under the sink. As he picked up the wrench to start on the pipes, the dogs started barking.

He decided he’d better get out there before the dogs scared the visitor off, or, depending on who the visitor was, maybe he’d let them.

Continue reading Enter the Larry: Part 1

1943: Part 6

Arik gave a grunt, and his body fell forward as Gunther stepped to the side, and out of his way.

A great gout of flame erupted from his back where Gunther’s blade slipped through.

The flames around Arik’s body grew higher, and pine needles on the ground around the castle caught fire. Continue reading 1943: Part 6