This is the fifth part of the compiled, spliced, and edited log of the “2008 Mary Sue Invasion” role-play. It concerns the Battle of the Cafeteria and its immediate aftermath, prior to the Massacre at the Tomb of the Unknown PPC Agent. The writing in this section comes from the following Boarders:
With an appearance by Delta Juliette’s Agent Dann disguised as Legolas-in-a-Speedo.
‘I guess it makes sense that they evacuated the kiddies first,’ said Pads, as she and her partner and their sniffer dog exited the Nursery.
‘So, to Medical then?’ Trojie asked, relieved that her daughter was safe. She scratched Absinthe’s head idly as she walked.
‘Spose,’ Pads answered. The two Bad Slashers and dog rounded a corner.
‘Oh. Shit,’ said Trojie.
‘Shit,’ said Pads a second later. They froze. Absinthe started growling deep in her throat.
The army of Mary-Sues coming down the corridor also froze, for a split second, before yelling ‘charge!’
‘Run like buggery, Trojie!’ Pads cried, throwing caution and her latest cigarette to the wind and galloping like a brumby back along the corridor they’d just come along. Trojie caught her up.
‘Why are we running? We’re Agents!’
‘We’re Bad Slashers, you wazzock, we’re unarmed, and there’s six bloody million of them! So I say we run!’
‘Go to dog, Pads! We’ll head for the Cafeteria!’
The Animagus agent switched form abruptly and just as abruptly did a ninety degree turn down a side-corridor, with Absinthe and Trojie trailing her.
The inside of the TARDIS wasn’t very small, but any enclosed space would quickly become claustrophobic if it was shared with two still growing alligators.
“But Gypsy, they’re just babies!”
“Do I look like I give a crap? Get them OUT of here, or I shoot!”
“But you’ve put up with them for the past two months!”
The screen of their TARDIS flickered on, and the Sub Rosa appeared on it. The two Bad Het girls stopped their arguing and listened closely.
Gypsy input the location for their Response Centre, and picked up an impressive looking gun. “Well, what are we waiting for?” she asked. “We have Sue ass to kick.”
“Just the gators.” Cray smiled. The alligators walked up to Cray, their cold lizard eyes staring at Gypsy for awhile before they both looked up to their owner.
Gypsy shuddered, but she, her partner and the alligators exited the TARDIS as a group.
“Yess!” Cray punched the air. According to the Console’s scanners, there were Mary Sues streaming past their RC door. “Let’s get into it!”
Gypsy’s eyes also contained a gleeful gleam. The only time she and her partner were on the same wavelength was when the bloody elimination of OCs was discussed. She checked the pump-action of the second shotgun she’d picked up, and started to grin.
“Cray,” she said. “Kick down that door.”
Her green-haired partner obeyed, and they leapt into the corridor, alligators and all.
‘I think we’ve lost them,’ panted Trojie, as she and her two canine companions ground to an exhausted halt near the Cafeteria. Beside her, Pads mushroomed back up to her human form and pointed.
‘Not a bit of it, Trojie. Look behind you.’
The horde of Mary Sues were falling back under the onslaught of two Agents, one red-haired, one green-haired, and what looked like a pair of ... alligators?
‘What in the name of—’
The sounds of shotgun-fire rent the air. Sues cowered. The green-haired agent wielded a pair of knives expertly, and Sues fell left, right and centre. But the number of Sues was enormous, and brave though they were, the two fighting Agents were being overwhelmed.
‘Isn’t that Gypsy and Cray?’ said Pads, squinting. ‘Looks like they’re in trouble.’
She and Trojie eyed each other. ‘We’re going to have to go in, aren’t we.’ said Trojie.
‘Unarmed? Outnumbered? Of course.’
‘At least we have the Narrative Laws of Comedy on our side,’ said Trojie hopelessly.
‘I’d rather have teeth and claws,’ said Pads, changing back to dog.
‘Let’s go then,’ said Trojie, unwinding her chain belt and swinging it menacingly. The Bad Slashers and Absinthe piled into the back of the Sue forces, fighting their way towards Gypsy and Cray.
‘Don’t shoot! We’re PPC!’ cried Trojie as Gypsy thumped the barrels of a shotgun into her gut.
‘Welcome to the party,’ cried an adrenaline-pumped Cray.
The general Sue slaughter went on, the four Agents and alligators putting a small, but respectable dent in the number of Sues they were against.
Gypsy continuously took out the farther Sues, the shotgun continuously pumping, making a rhythm of shooting and reloading, while Cray punched and slashed outwards, the knuckle knives she was wearing helping to keep her and her partner out of immediate danger.
“It’s almost unfair we’re in Bad Het, isn’t it!?” Cray yelled, over a screaming Sue.
“Well since you display so much talent at killing things,” Trojie grunted, lashing out at a particularly sparkly Elf Sue with her chain, “maybe, but we needed you in Bad Het. How did that child-of-C*l*br**n fic go?”
“‘Violation of the Evenstar’, you mean?” Gypsy shouted over her shotgun. “Just brilliant. Gonna be having nightmares for years.”
“Could you all shut up for five minutes and keep fighting?” Pads was rapidly shifting between forms, trying to battle a shapeshifter-Sue that wouldn’t play fair. She eventually got her jaws locked around its throat.
Cray laughed. “What, and stop with the fun con—agh.” She stared down in surprise at a Sue sword that had been jabbed into her thigh.
“Whaat?” Cray yanked the sword out with a lurching grab and thrust it through the throat of the Ranger Sue who’d stabbed her. “That hurt...”
“You’re bleeding!” Trojie seemed concerned.
“Is that baad...?” Cray swayed slightly as she knocked down another Sue.
“Yes! That’s very bad!”
I don’t feel so good...
Gypsy, Trojie, Pads and the Sues looked for the source of the psychic voice, just as Cray toppled over.
From another hallway, charging the cafeteria like the proverbial locomotive—
No, that was wrong. There were too many legs, for one thing, and you’d have to imagine that the locomotive had Tourette’s Syndrome and had run through a shower of glittery urple rain before it had got to this point. Also, it wasn’t charging so much as panicking in a forward direction.
But let’s go back a step in time.
Nume and Ilraen heard the broadcast with something like hunger in their expressions. After their last mission, they’d portalled back to their RC after leaving Agent Robinson and a new recruit in FicPsych. Mere moments later, the quarantine had gone into effect. Since then, they’d been stuck together in RC #999. They were stiff, anxious, and dangerously twitchy. They looked at each other.
“We’re male,” said Nume.
<Yes,> said Ilraen.
“I can’t fight,” said Nume.
<My aim is terrible,> said Ilraen.
“But I’d like to see them try to control me.”
<And I am very fast.>
“I’ll clock you if you get ’Sued.”
“Never mind. Are we agreed?”
<Yes, Agent Supernumerary.>
Silently, Nume placed a hardcover copy of The Andalite Chronicles in Ilraen’s shoulder bag and, with Ilraen’s help, swung one long leg over his sloping back and prepared to cling there for his life. Nume was no teenage girl, but he was light for his tallness and canonical precedent was canonical precedent. Still in silence, Ilraen opened the RC door and stepped out into the hallway. It didn’t take them long to find a contingent of Mary-Sues heading away from the DIC.
The partners looked at each other.
Ilraen charged them and hacked wantonly with his tail blade, clearing just enough space to dodge through their ranks. Both agents were doused with ’Sue-blood and the floors became slick with the stuff, but somehow Ilraen kept his footing and made it to the other side. Surprise gave them enough of an edge to get a few meters away before the ’Sueish battle cry announced the success of their ploy. Ilraen looked back with his stalk eyes.
<Agent Supernumerary! They are chasing us!>
“That’s the plan!” shouted Nume. “For the love of Spock, keep running!”
He did. They screamed. And that brings us back to the present.
Ilraen didn’t stop until he was well beyond the Cafeteria entrance and, in fact, he wouldn’t have stopped there if it hadn’t been for the pile of tables stacked in his path. There was an enormous crash-bang-CRACK as the stack toppled and the hard, flat surfaces slapped the floor. Nume was thrown over them and landed hard on the other side, senseless for the moment. Ilraen, himself dazed and in pain, could only watch the entrance.
The sound of hoof beats overrode the sounds of angry Sues for a moment, and a Dopplered yell flew past the door of the Bad Het RC. The Sues abruptly left off their attack and chased the source of the odd noises.
‘Was that ....’
‘An Andalite with a tall skinny dude on its back? Yep,’ said Trojie. She smiled. ‘Only in the PPC, eh.’
‘If we can stop being nostalgic for ten seconds,’ said Gypsy, who was crouched next to her pale partner. ‘Cray’s losing blood like crazy. We need to get her somewhere safe.’
‘We cannot leave the others to torment and death!’ exclaimed Pads, high on adrenaline, before being glared back down to earth. Quoting LotR in the halls of the PPC got old about ten years ago.
‘Fine. You guys follow them, and I’ll stash Cray in the RC, then join you when I think she’s safe, ok?’
Getting into the Cafeteria was easy. Spotting the Andalite Agent was also easy. Getting to him and his partner was less so.
Fortunately, the two males spotted the black-clad reinforcements. And Andalites are big, heavy, and equipped with an impressive tailblade. The Sues were forcibly pushed aside, and now four Agents; three human and one Andalite, and a dog, were pressed up against the Cafeteria wall.
‘Well, this is an improvement,’ said Pads sarcastically.
Ilraen was very happy to see the other agents and told them so. His front legs hurt in a muffled throbbing sort of way, but that wasn’t important right now. He had nowhere to go, and there must have been something of an Andalite Warrior in his blood, because the ’Sues were coming and he was going to fight them with everything he had, even if he died doing it.
The Andalite looked down with one stalk eye. Nume had picked himself up and was leaning against the wall, a crack through the right lens of his glasses. The left was missing, and there were flecks of red blood on his cheek. He seemed to notice and took the glasses off.
“Don’t die. I don’t wanna have to train up another pathetic recruit.”
Ilraen smiled. <We will kill many ’Sues today, my friends. We will not die.>
And then they came.
As the Sues entered, a TARDIS shaped like a table opened. Honesah emerged, along with five Daleks. “Exterminate the Sues and only the Sues,” ordered Honesah.
“EX-TER-MIN-ATE!” The foremost Sues underwent a chromatic inversion and fell dead.
Rouge reached the Cafeteria just in time to see several large things that looked like black saltshakers shoot some of the Sues with a kind of energy weapon. I think I need to pay more attention to sci-fi fandom, he thought to himself.
His vision was starting to blur. From his position in the hallway, Rouge threw the last two of his knives into the crowd of Sues. He had the satisfaction of seeing them bring down two Sues before the pain of the crossbow bolt in his shoulder overwhelmed him and he slumped against the wall, unconscious.
Agents were now trickling into the cafeteria in ones and twos, and quickly joining in the valiant fight. A speeding Legolas in Speedos brought in another group of caterwauling Sues to swell the ranks of Evil that were now rapidly being penned in the Cafeteria, and shed his disguise, revealing himself to be an Agent. The thin black line of PPC agents was fighting bravely against the Sues, but the midden was hitting the windmill. That is, until—
‘Are those Daleks?’ Trojie asked suddenly. Pads, spitting blood, Gypsy, and a wan Cray looked up from their current victims.
‘They do appear to be Daleks, yes,’ said Pads, dropping her Sue, wiping the blood from her mouth and grinning. ‘And notice that they’re only gunning down Sues ...’
‘Come on, guys, we’ve as good as got this won!’ cried Cray, surging forward with knives out.
‘Cray, you madwoman, I only just got you patched up from the last time you tried that,’ said Gypsy, grabbing her partner’s shoulder. ‘Fifteen minutes ago you were dying of blood loss, and it was only because I had no ropes to tie you to the bed with that I had to let you come along here. Now do the decent thing and act like an invalid.’
The Daleks were cutting a broad swathe through the Sues, and the Agents followed in their wake, taking out Sue after Sue.
‘We might just have this—’ began Trojie, before having a hand clamped over her mouth.
‘If you tempt the Narrative Laws of Comedy at this moment,’ said Pads, ‘so help me, I will kill you myself.’
Honesah gored the last Sue in the cafeteria with her horn and recalled the Daleks.
Meanwhile, down in Mini Care, Iskillion was battling a Rachel!Stu in an empty mini-Hnakra tank. Iskillion was in Watcher morph and the Stu in mardrut morph.
As the last Sue fell two Agents burst into the cafeteria, brandishing bows and screeching what was probably intended to be a war cry at the top of their lungs. They were accompanied by two bellowing mini-Balrogs, who were flailing their whips in every direction.
The noisy group would probably have kept on going, had not the shorter of the two Agents slipped in a patch of Sue-blood and crashed to the floor, tripping her partner and the minis. As the nearest Agents just stared, and more turned to see what was going on, both young women began to blush fiercely and disentangle themselves from each other.
A couple of nearby Slashers helped them up. “What was that about?” one asked.
The taller of the new duo suddenly became very concerned with trying to brush off the glitter all over her and didn’t reply.
Cassie shot Nat a look of annoyance and replied, “Well, the idea was to make ourselves look a bit more intimidating than we really are. There’re still Sues wandering around Headquarters, and we really didn’t want to get too close to a big group of them on our own.”
Cassie was startled by the bellow, but turned to see who’d spoken. As she was about to reply, however, Nat butted in.
“Yeah, we already killed one up by the S.O.’s office and—”
“They’re still after the Flowers. Come on, let’s get going. And lets try to get the wounded up to Medical, shall we?” The voice was from further back in the room.
There was a general consensus as people started helping up the injured, checking their weapons and generally getting ready for the next strike. One of the Slashers who had helped the girls up said, “How about you help out with the group going up to Medical?”
Nat grinned. “Sure. Come on, Cass.” Cassie picked up Greenlead, but Giml seemed to be feeling a bit more belligerent than usual and refused to be carried.
The little group joined the party heading up to Medical. Two Agents, who appeared to be from some division of the Bad Slash Department, judging by the upside-down rubber duck on their flashpatches, were having a little difficulty. One, with bright green hair, had clearly been injured fairly badly. The other, a redhead, was trying to help her up. Nat put her bow away and went over to offer some help.
Cassie looked around. She didn’t even want to think about how many other Agents had been hurt or killed in this battle, but she still hadn’t tamed her morbid curiosity properly.
A nudge got her attention. “Come on, we’re off.” She nodded absently and fell into step with the rest. Nearby, Nat and the red-haired woman were supporting the green-haired Agent.
There was a general sigh of relief shared between the Department of Bad Slash Agents as the last Sue in the Cafeteria was eliminated.
“Glad that’s over,” Pads said. She began to roll up a cigarette.
Gypsy shook her partner; Cray was looking paler than she had before and was shaking. “Stay alive, Cray.” Gypsy looked over to Trojie and Pads with a look on concern on her face. “It’d probably be a good idea to get her to Medical right now, she’s not going to last much longer like this.”
Right on cue, a clumping noise sounded outside the Cafeteria doors, and a horned face peered around the doorframe.
‘Mum?’ Marsha, Trojie’s large, reptilian daughter poked her head into the Cafeteria. ‘They let me come back cos I wanted to help! And maybe because I threatened to trample all the Bleeprin supplies if they didn’t let me ...’
‘Marsha!’ Trojie rushed to the Triceratops’ side. ‘As it turns out, love, you can help. Gypsy, bring Cray here.’
The red-headed Bad Het agent picked up her now limp and barely awake partner.
‘At least three of us ought to be able to ride on Marsha,’ Trojie explained. ‘Gypsy, you and Cray get up there, and the rest of us will walk behind. We’re going to Medical.’
‘Trojie,’ said Gypsy, looking up at the bulk of the adolescent dinosaur. ‘She’s a metre and a half tall.’
‘I can hear you, you know,’ said Marsha petulantly. ‘And I can kneel too.’ She did so, reducing herself by half a metre in height.
Gypsy passed Cray to Trojie and scrambled aboard. Once up, she pulled Cray up after her.
‘It’s at times like these,’ said Pads, regarding them all, ‘that I can’t help but quote Monty Python. “Bring out your dead!”’
I’m not dead, said someone.
‘There’s that damn psychic again,’ said Trojie. ‘I don’t suppose there’s a Sue still lurking around, is there?’
I’m not a Sue. And I’m not dead.
Gypsy squinted at her partner oddly. ‘Cray, is that you?’
I think so. Am I in lots of pain?
‘Well, your leg is throbbing, you’re covered in your own blood and you don’t seem able to move your limbs.’
So some pain then.
‘Probably. We’re just taking you to Medical now.’
Could someone find my alligators, please? asked Cray, before apparently passing out completely.
‘Um, Gypsy? What universe is Cray from?’
‘Marvel, I think. Why?’
‘Just checking she hadn’t been Sued. Psychic powers are a big Sue-sign.’
‘Point. We’ll get Medical to check her over.’
The convoy moved off, Marsha at the head with her cargo of Gypsy and Cray, followed by Trojie, Pads (in dog form, her preferred shape for HQ travel) and Absinthe, her muzzle still spattered with Suvian glitter-blood. Other agents, who’d been fighting with them but whose names the Bad Slash and Bad Het agents didn’t yet know, there not being time for introductions in a battle, followed. Safety in numbers, after all.
Occasionally they had to turn down different corridors, where walls had collapsed from the ravages the macroviruses had caused and made paths navigable, and in some places the bodies of dead Sues and Agents were laid, marking the unfortunate. It took time, but finally they reached Medical.
Marsha knelt, allowing Trojie, Pads, and Gypsy to take Cray down, the three women doing their best to support their wounded and unconscious friend into the wards of Medical.
‘We have someone who needs medical attention!’ Trojie yelled.
‘Yeah, you and six hundred others,’ said a Nurse, pushing sweaty hair out of her eyes and looking at the new arrivals with something less than enthusiasm. ‘Put her down on that pallet. What’s the trouble?’ For all her gruff comments, the Nurse was gentle with Cray, feeling for a pulse and checking for swelling around the obvious leg wound while Gypsy explained the situation.
‘And now she’s started talking psychically and we don’t know if it’s normal, she’s from the Marvel-verse, but with all these Sues around ...’ Gypsy shrugged. ‘We can’t tell.’
‘If she was Sued, believe me, she’d still be causing trouble, leg wound or no,’ said the Nurse, readying a hypodermic spray. ‘This should boost her body’s repair system, wake her up a bit. Take her back to your RC and make her sit tight; I don’t care if she’s ADHD or has Bloodwrath or whatever reason to not stay in bed; she stays in bed! I’d keep her here but as you can see,’ the Nurse waved her hand at the ward, ‘we’ve got NO space whatsoever. She’s lost a lot of blood. She shouldn’t be moving much, if at all. Water, soup, bread if she’ll take it, NO bleeproducts, tie her down if you have to. Encourage her to speak psychically cos it’ll stop her speaking normally, which’ll save some energy at least, and it’ll keep her mind working, which is a good thing. Scat, I have ten people suffering from the Black Breath lined up thanks to a Daughter of The Witch King Sue. Go on, scat!’
The Agents helped Cray back outside to where Marsha had been waiting impatiently. ‘We hadn’t taken that long,’ Trojie said, hushing the triceratops’s complaints. ‘We were rushed out quickly, not even ten minutes.’
Cray’s eyes fluttered open as she was once more hoisted on top of Marsha. ‘I feel a bit better...’ she murmured.
‘That’d probably be whatever the nurse had used working,’ Gypsy said. ‘And you’re not supposed to be talking at all.’
Gypsy, Trojie, and Pads felt a sensation not too much unlike their minds being touched with a feather duster.
‘Aagh.’ The Fireflyverse Agent shuddered.
You were lying, Cray’s mental voice said, echoing through their heads. It held a note of disapproval.
‘I can’t take that; Trojie, will you ride with her? I can probably find the way to the RC quicker walking, anyways.’
Bewildered, the youngish duo looked at each other and followed, trying not to get too close to the group, which included a fairly large Triceratops. They all seemed to be fairly concerned about the injured woman, which was understandable, so Cassie and Nat tried to fade into the background and still keep up.
Of course, anyone carrying fiery little demons around in a very dark place is not going to go unnoticed for ever. One of the agents looked back and said, “Why exactly are you following us? Don’t you have anyone to help out?”
Nat decided to take the initiative this time and replied, “Not really. We don’t know anyone. And you all look pretty experienced, so we thought...well...” She ducked her head under the agent’s gaze.
“We have weapons,” Cassie supplied, unnecessarily indicating her sword and bow. “And minis.” Both minis straightened up and tried to look menacing.
“I’m Nat, by the way,” the tall, lanky girl butted in. “And this is Cassie.” As she tended to do when trying not to look embarrassed, Cassie nudged her glasses back up to their proper position and looked for something to do.
“So can we stick with you for now?” Nat asked, hoping the answer was yes.
Trojie looked at the newbies, who looked back at her, doing the ‘Last Puppy in the Shop’ face so well that she found herself succumbing. It wouldn’t do any good to let them wander around loose, anyway, they’d only get hurt or go mad. What a time to be a newbie in the PPC!
‘Alright then,’ she said. ‘I’m Trojie. Dept. Bad Slash. This is my partner Paddlebrains—’ she indicated the large, hairy black dog at her side. The newbies decided not to comment, ‘—and these are my colleagues from the Division of Bad Het; Gypsy and Cray. Oh, and my daughter, Marsha.’ she added, patting the flank of the dinosaur.
They all plodded along, keeping a wary weather-eye out for Sues, and, in the case of Cassie and Nat, refraining from asking questions.
On the way back from Medical, Cray, the green-haired Agent, woke up. After some arguments, they all headed back to someone’s RC. They were nearly there, when suddenly—
‘Cray, are you alright?’
‘Get to the Tomb! They’re defiling the Tomb! Don’t let them get their Famous Last Stand!’ Cray slumped back against Marsha’s scaled hide, strength gone.
Gypsy, Pads and Trojie all looked at each other. ‘Never let it be said I ignored a delirious psychic,’ said Gypsy. ‘Shall we take a look?’
‘Can’t do any harm,’ said Trojie, shrugging. Pads barked agreement.
‘Cassie? Nat?’ Trojie turned to the new pair. ‘We’re heading for the Tomb of the Unknown PPC Agent now. Cray seems to think that something’s going on down there. Are you going to come or do you want to hole up in Gypsy’s RC?’
Nat looked slightly dubious but Cassie nodded. “We’re coming.” She glanced at Nat, who looked distinctly unimpressed “Oh, come on, Nat, it’ll be good practice.”
The skinny agent ran a hand through her cropped hair. “Fine,” she replied, sounding grumpy, “but when are we ever going to be facing fifty-odd Sues on a mission?”
“No idea. Hopefully, never. Let’s go.”
Nat would have loved to stop and ask questions or argue the point, but it was clear that the agent who’d got hurt—Cray—was going to get very upset if they didn’t start moving soon. The others didn’t look to be in the mood for standing around talking either.
She turned to the Agent who appeared to be leading the group. “Ok, I’m in.”
“Good,” Trojie replied. “Shall we get moving?”
Pads barked and set off down the corridor. Greenlead and Giml hissed and scampered off to follow her.
As the rest of them hurried after the trio, Gypsy heard the two newbies talking.
“What’s this Tomb thing about, Cass?”
“You were here first, don’t you know anything?”
“By about half an hour, and no. Look out for—”
There was a muffled “ow.”
“—that rubble,” Cassie finished.
They heard shouting from up ahead. Every person there who had a weapon clutched it tighter, ready for the confrontation.