As the action wound down, the heroes were finally joined by Gandor the Great who flipped the lights back on and asked, “Have you got enough rope?” as he pulled a length of rope, hand over hand, out of his sleeve.
The Daoist, still in mountain lion form, sat perched on a gunman's back, keeping him subdued for the time being.
Alpha-Woman waited impatiently for signs of the men to wake up from her bashing them.
Sewer Rat, who had watched what he could of the battle from an outside window, surveyed the final scene as soon as the lights came back on and smacked his forehead. This was not how you did covert operations, he was certain. He came up with a plan on the spot and tried to share it with his comrades through the closed window, but no one could hear him. Giving up, he came around to the front door.
The Mountain Man was not sure what to do now. He could have used Sewer Rat’s plan but could not hear it from the back porch. "What were you sent out here for? I was expecting to get a good night's sleep. What's the story?" the Mountain Man asked his prisoner.
Dice Morgan and Captain Liberty, who had just met for the first time now, shook hands. "Greetings, I am Captain Liberty!” said Capt. Liberty. “You seem to be a patriotic American! Nice to meet you!” Then he turned to where a mountain lion sat on their one conscious prisoner and glared at the prisoner. He also began glowing with patriotic might in order to intimidate.
Dice stared at the Captain. "Uh... Yeah." He shook his head and muttered under his breath, "An' I thought the Chinaman an' Ol' Stinkaroo were screwy." Then he muttered, "Why don't we just slep’ ‘dese yahoos around until they tell us where their buddies are? Dat's eight less we'll have ta’ take out later."
Silver Scorpion left the prisoners for the others and practically flew through the house at a breakneck speed, doing a quick search of the ground floor room-by-room for any more foes to pummel.
And just as Silver Scorpion ran past, Sewer Rat kicked in the front door. "Behold! I am the Rat! Harbinger of the Rooster God!" he shouted in a theatrical tone, making sure the prisoners could hear. I just hope my team gets it, he thought.
Dice Morgan shook his head at Sewer Rat's posturings, clearly not getting what he was trying to do. "Lil' guy's been sniffin' his own fumes too long." Dice got too itchy just standing there and doing nothing. He reached under the mountain lion and grabbed the prisoner by the scruff of the neck. "Alright already. Talk!"
After a few minutes of Dice threatening violence, Captain Liberty intimidatingly glowing, and Sewer Rat sounding crazy, their prisoner broke down. "Alright, alright!" cried their prisoner. "I'll tell you anything you want to know if you just lay off!"
Alpha-Woman, wanting her own prisoner to interrogate, was ready to slap one of her guys if they didn’t wake up soon.
Meanwhile, Silver Scorpion finished her sweep of the house in the living room and actually found the eighth man hiding behind the couch, where he had been most of the time.
Silver Scorpion grabbed the man hiding behind the couch by his arm and twisted it behind him. "Come on, you, out there with the rest of 'em!" she said as she pulled him out into the open.
No one else to this point had given a second glance at the mountain lion sitting amongst them, but Silver Scorpion noticed it now for the first time and did a double-take. But, as no one else seemed to be paying it any mind, she shrugged inwardly and continued as if nothing was amiss.
"Is that all of them? If any got away they may be back with more soon," Silver Scorpion said to her fellow vigilantes. Then she turned to the already talking prisoner and added, "How many of you came here? Who ordered you? Why are you after me?" With each question she twisted the arm of her held prisoner.
"When Jason, the guy who owns this place, radioed the temple to tell us of the new people they radioed back word to us to come fetch them and take them straight back to the temple,” the prisoner said, his words just spilling out of his mouth. “It's just the eight of us still in town.”
“Milo headed back to the temple already. That's all we know!" Silver's prisoner added.
Outside, The Mountain Man had engaged in his own conversation with his prisoner. Only, using guile and subtlety instead of violence, he had learned that the man’s name was Chuck and that this had all been a big misunderstanding. The man, Chuck, was fascinated by what life must be like for a big city mobster (thinking of St. Louis as a big city) and listened attentively as the Mountain Man spun a tall tale for him.
Meanwhile, Alpha-Woman had managed to rouse one of her prisoners without smacking him too hard and got much the same answers out of him as Silver had. Alpha-Woman shook her fist, saying, "I bet you know information you aren't saying. Don't lie to me! I hate liars!" But then, calming down, she added, “Well, you two are lucky, I won't hit either of you. I’ll just put you with the others." And then she proceeded to move all the prisoners into one big pile.
Back outside, the Mountain Man asked Chuck, “So, I guess you guys pretty much own this town, huh? What's the point of that? How can you be making any money that way?"
Black Cat by Steve Rude
8 hours ago