Blue Light Productions presents

| Blue Light Productions
| (and *not* Best Brains)
| present:
| Limp-Asparagus Lad #49
| A Legion of Net.Heroes title
| 'It Came From The Late Late Late Show'
| Part 4 of 5
| Written by and copyright 2003 Saxon Brenton
| Art by Fred H*mback

     Carborundum Armoured Weapon: Well, that was certainly an exciting 
Fight Scene.
     Swordmaster: I suppose so. We should have brought some popcorn back 
to the theatre with us, though... Eh?
     Flamingo: Hsssss
     Swordmaster: [skewering the flamingo with a katanna of electricity] 
Those damn things get everywhere!

|           ((((((((((OOOOO)))))))))
|      "So, let me get this straight," recapped Major Television-Event. 
| "You two men were in town when you heard a commotion. When you arrived 
| at the parking lot of the Sea Breeze hotel you found two people 
| fighting. One of them was a woman who looked like Linda Greenberg, but 
| who subsequently turned out to be a killer robot." He tapped thought-
| fully on his desk, where a life like rubber mask with Linda Greenberg's 
| features lay. "The other was a masked man dressed in a green and grey 
| costume with a blanket over one shoulder, who identified himself as a 
| superhero called Limp-Asparagus Lad. The woman accused him of being a 
| communist spy who had sabotaged the atom bomb test earlier today in 
| order to kill any servicemen caught outside in the blast. After the 
| woman was revealed as a robot, it exploded, leaving a crater in the 
| carpark of the hotel and wounding Corporal Burbank on the arm. Then 
| Limp-Asparagus Lad helped bandage Burbank, and while doing so claimed 
| that the bomb test had *actually* been sabotaged by the reclusive Dr. 
| Liverwurst, and that Dr. Liverwurst had tried to lure one of the local 
| teenagers onto the test site in order to deliberately expose him to the 
| radiation of the blast, but that Lt. Don Scowie had been caught by this 
| trap instead. He then said he hadn't realised that Dr. Liverwurst had 
| replaced Linda Greenberg with a killer robot double, and that he 
| intended to go to the Liverwurst Place to try to rescue her and stop 
| Dr. Liverwurst. Then he flew away, like a bird."
|      "Not quite, sir," said Corporal Rich Burbank.
|      "How so?"
|      "He didn't need to flap his arms like wings, sir. He just jumped 
| into the air and glided away."
|      "He just... glided away."
|      "Yes, sir."
|      "Very well. And is there anything else?"
|      "Yes, sir," said Corporal Matt Vesieka. "Just before he flew away, 
| he said he wasn't sure about how many people Dr. Liverwurst had working 
| for him up at the mansion, and he asked if the army could send some 
| assistance."
|      "Did he indeed?" said the Major. "How extremely optimistic he must 
| be to think that he can just whistle up help from the army. Very well 
| men. Given that I have personally seen a forty foot tall man walk 
| through Fort Courage and off into the woods, I am prepared to suspend 
| my disbelief on some of the more bizarre reports that I have been 
| receiving today - at least up to the point where a proper investigation 
| can be held. All right, dismissed."

     CAW: [as if holding a cigarette] We must maintain plausible 

|      Rich was relieved. It looked as though something else *had* 
| turned up, and that their little adventure in town would be lost in 
| the shuffle.
|           ((((((((((OOOOO)))))))))
|       Limp-Asparagus Lad faced the bedraggled group of beach-goers and 
| a few members of Von Velcro's Bats Out Of Hell gang that he and the 
| guest-starring members of the Load Island Renegades had rescued last 
| issue. "Well?" he asked again. "Anybody?"
|      "Uhm," went Deadhead, who had discovered that the payment for 
| working in the standover squad for a mad scientist was to be abandoned 
| to be pecked to death by bloodthirsty plastic lawn ornament flamingos 
| when it suited the mad scientist's purposes. "There's a couple of ways 
| into the tunnels," he answered. "Most of the time Dr. Liverwurst had 
| them off limits to us, so the one we know best is in the underground 
| garage where the dragsters and spare bikes are kept."
|     "What are you planning, Limpy?" asked Wongo.

     CAW: First Woody, now Limpy. Is the Writer trying to tell us 
     Swordmaster: I don't want to know.

|     "I came here to stop Dr. Liverwurst. I thought that would mean 
| destroying his mind control ray, but in the past few hours I've found 
| that he has both Peter and Linda Greenberg captive. Swordmaster had 
| evidence that they might be in the tunnels, and possibly guarded by 
| giant spiders.  I know where the doctor's mind control ray is that 
| he's using on Don Scowie, but I still need to locate the Greenbergs 
| properly."
|     "Scowie?" said Surfer Boy. "You mean Pete's sisters' boyfriend? 
| What's he got to do with all of this?"
|     "He is my SLAVE!" proclaimed Dr. Liverwurst, with an entrance that 
| literally knocked everyone off their feet. The walls and floor of half 
| of the wing of the house they were in rolled back and up and away like 
| a gigantic space-faring modular battle platform. The building rocked on 
| its foundations. Several people had to scramble to make it into the 
| unaffected hall where most of the group had been standing, and Limp-
| Asparagus Lad had to fly over to stop two people from falling in. The 
| girls all screamed.

     CAW: Cool! Special effects ripped off from Macross.

|      When it was over five levels worth of internal partitions had 
| folded back, opening up that wing into a gigantic space that was 
| at least partly exposed to the sky where sections of the roof had 
| retracted as well. Dominating the area was a platform that jutted out 
| at the second story. On that platform was a large, complicated looking 
| ray gun/cannon type device which had several large power conduits 
| leading down into vast vats of liquid that glowed with a harsh green 
| light two stories below from where the LNHer and company stood. Next 
| to the device was Dr. Liverwurst, and sitting behind it like a gunner 
| was Von Velcro.
|     "Soon Scowie will be here to take my orders!" proclaimed Dr. 
| Liverwurst with perhaps overly optimistic melodrama. "Your attempts to 
| stop me have failed! The Greenbergs will soon be dead as their dungeon 
| floods, and you die now! Kill them all!"
|     "With pleasure!" said Von Velcro, and began aiming the death ray 
| down at the group. All the girls screamed.

     CAW: And the crowd went wild.
     CAW and Swordmaster: [bored] Yay.

|     The thing was huge and ponderous though, allowing Limp-Aspargaus 
| Lad time to take flight and soar up to it. He hovered beside the cannon-
| like fuselage and began to tear apart anything that he could see that 
| looked like it might be important to its operation.
|      "Stop that you fool!" yelled Dr. Liverwurst, who futilely tried to 
| swipe at the LNHer but wasn't able to reach by a good yard or so. The 
| mounting for the death ray was simply too tall.
|      "Kindly be quiet," said Limp-Asparagus Lad, who was considering 
| becoming irritated. He was also wondering what use an indoor death ray 
| was against a group of people who were already scattering into the rest 
| of the manor house. Did the insides of the *entire* building fold away 
| to leave a single interior room?
|     As it turned out the cry of, "Crush! Kill! Maim! Destroy!" brought 
| the answer. Gernsback had climbed out of the mess he had made of the 
| piano and was herding victims back into the sights of the death ray. 
| The girls all screamed.

     CAW: Hey look! Reused footage!

|      Limp-Asparagus Lad took this all in, and made one last jab at 
| smashing things on the death ray by jumping up and down on some 
| eminently breakable looking electronics before flying down to deal with 
| the robot. In the meantime, Surfer Boy, Chuck! and Deadhead had tried 
| to tackle Gernsback and force it to the floor. The malefic machine 
| brushed them aside and flung Chuck! across the floor and almost into 
| the open pit. Limp-Asparagus Lad rescued Chuck! before he fell and 
| then scooted around behind Gernsback. The robot would be heavy, 
| probably more than the extra two person limit of the flightring.thingee, 
| but not by an unworkable margin. The Legionnaire found a spot on the 
| robot's back where he could get a grip on its baroque construction 
| without it being able to reach him with its arms. As the robot thrashed, 
| Limp-Asparagus Lad slowly hauled it into the air where it couldn't get 
| any traction to use much of its strength, then moved it forward and 
| dropped it over the edge. It made a vastly satisfying crashing sound 
| as it hit the bottom several stories below.

     Swordmaster: Are you sure it's broken this time? Are you absolutely 

|      Up above, Von Velcro had tried to fire up the death ray anyway, 
| probably hoping that the damage done by Limp-Asparagus Lad would be so 
| minor as to be ignorable. It wasn't, and the mechanism backfired. An 
| explosion ripped through the machine, damaging both it and part of the 
| platform it was standing on. Just as Limp-Asparagus Lad had managed to 
| get Gernsback to the edge of the pit, Von Velcro and the death ray 
| cannon were tilting over and fell into the seething vats of green 
| energy below.
|     Limp-Asparagus Lad flew up and floated in front of Dr. Liverwurst, 
| who was standing on what remained of the platform, staring around at 
| the ruins of his plan to obliterate his enemies. "Surrender, Dr. 
| Liverwurst," the Man of Dull said. "Tell me where Peter and Linda 
| Greenberg are."
|      Dr. Liverwurst stared at the Legionnaire as if he were mad. 
| "Never!" he cried, whipping his handprint-covered robe around himself 
| like Zorro flourishing his cape. The doctor took a step to the left and 
| then a jump to the right into an escape chute that opened with a 
| 'chuff' sound, whisking him away.

     CAW: Ah, so that's what happens when you don't put your hands on 
your hips afterwards.

|      Limp-Asparagus Lad dropped back down to the floor and walked into 
| the adjacent room where most of the teenagers had retreated in 
| apprehension. "I think it will be too much to ask that we won't have 
| any more interruptions," he said, and a few people laughed nervously. 
| "It isn't safe for you to remain here, in case Dr. Liverwurst has more 
| traps like that one. In particular, everyone who is wounded should 
| probably be sent to hospital." He turned to Surfer Boy. "How did you 
| get here in the first place?"
|     "Our cars are parked out on a back road just over the crest of the 
| hill," he answered, pointing his thumb eastwards.
|     "There's the dragsters in the garage downstairs," suggested one of 
| the remaining Hell's Bats. "If you're going that way to get to the 
| tunnels, those cars would be a lot closer."
|     Limp-Asparagus Lad gave this quick consideration. If the dungeons 
| were flooding he should take care of the Greenbergs first. "Very well. 
| Let's be quick though, before Dr. Liverwurst has time to activate a 
| backup plan."
|           ((((((((((OOOOO)))))))))
|     The garage was indeed close - a few rooms over and then down a 
| single flight of stairs. There were about three cars in working order, 
| as well as a few spare motorbikes, and bits and pieces. As the others 
| were loading up, Deadhead showed Limp-Asparagus Lad where the entrance 
| to the tunnels was. The biker called Fist came over and said, "Do you 
| want me to show you the way?"

     Swordmaster: Convenience alert.
     CAW: There's a dairy nearby?
     Swordmaster: ...never mind.

|     "I thought Dr. Liverwurst placed the tunnels off limits?"
|     "He did," Fist shrugged. "It didn't stop me from going and 
| exploring it anyway. If you're serious about trying to find the 
| Greenbergs before the place floods you'll need a guide. There are 
| places down there that are a maze."
|     "I'll have to carry you, then."
|     "If that'll be quickest."
|           ((((((((((OOOOO)))))))))
|     "How far down do these tunnels go?" asked Limp-Asparagus Lad as 
| they flew through the tunnels.
|     "Down to sea level, at least," said Fist. "There's one that leads 
| to a sea cave in the headland that a small boat can enter at low tide." 
| Then he added, "Liverwurst might be able to seal off sections of the 
| tunnels so they don't drain out, just like he could move around parts 
| of his house."
|     They had been flying down through a network of tunnels and were 
| now in an area that was normally partially flooded. They had been 
| following a particular tunnel for a few minutes, although presumably 
| it would have taken longer to traverse by boat. The water had been 
| rising the whole time.
|     A pale blue glow up ahead suddenly grew stronger as they flew up 
| to and then into a large dome shaped chamber. It was illuminated by 
| strange multifaceted crystals set in the walls and ceiling. There were 
| five other tunnels, also water logged, that entered from irregular 
| points around the walls. All of these tunnels irrigated a moat of sorts 
| that circumscribed the outside wall, making an island of the floor area 
| in the middle. Hanging from the ceiling were several large cocoons. 
| Most were old, grey and tattered, and could visibly be seen to contain 
| human skeletons.
|     The Man of Dull landed and looked about. The cavern seemed to be 
| devoid of giant spiders at the moment. However, there was an opening 
| at the apex of the dome, and it took little work to guess that with all 
| of the ground level tunnels half filled with water that this aperture 
| in the ceiling would be the alleged arachnid's likely entry point. 
| "Come on. We probably do not have much time."
|     "You already have *no* time!" said Fist, and his voice sounded 
| strange.
|     Limp-Asparagus Lad looked and beheld Fist turning into a giant 
| spider.

     Swordmaster: Oh gosh. How unexpected.
     CAW: Is the CGI animation cool?

|           ((((((((((OOOOO)))))))))
|      At this point the scene shifts back upstairs to the garden of the 
| Liverwurst Place, where a Mystery Guest Star is trying to orientate 
| himself.
|      His identity will be revealed at the end of this episode, and he 
| will play a major role in averting death and destruction next issue.
| But in the meantime, the Mystery Guest Star had materialised in the 
| aforementioned sea cave. The reason for his appearance there was quite 
| simple: he was currently ensconced in a connected series of stories 
| where he would arbitrarily be dumped in a time and place where Evil 
| needed to be confronted, and where he was obliged to remain until the 
| situation was resolved, before being whisked off to the next crisis 
| point. That's right, he was suffering from Quantum Leap Syndrome.
|      Knowing the conditional requirements of his situation, he had 
| scouted around in the sea cave and a few of the tunnels connected to 
| it, before deciding to exit through the cave and see what was out on 
| the coast. This had eventually brought him to the grounds of 
| Liverwurst's manor house, where he noticed some of the beach-goers.
|      .oO( Teenagers, ) he thought. ( Hmmm. They seem agitated. I bet 
| they're concerned about The Problem. Whatever it is in this case. I'll 
| just move closer and listen, ) he decided and snuck in using the 
| moonlight-created shadows of the garden for cover.
|      "He'll be here in a few minutes," said one of the girls, looking 
| off in agitation through the woods to the west.
|      One of the boys nodded and said to the others, "Try and park the 
| cars under the trees where they're less likely to be stepped on."
|      "Sure thing, Surfer Boy," said one of the others and went off to 
| do as suggested.
|      "So now what?" someone else asked, working up into exposition 
| mode. "The guys who were injured are all off at hospital, and pretty 
| much all off the Hell's Bats have split except for Deadhead here. Even 
| with Von Velcro gone, it's going to be hard stopping Dr. Liverwurst. 
| And we have *no* way of stopping a forty foot tall Don Scowie."
|      The one called Surfer Boy looked up at the building thoughtfully. 
| "Maybe. Maybe not. Limp-Asparagus Lad said he would rescue the 
| Greenbergs from the giant spiders in the tunnels underneath the house 
| before he took out the mind control ray. If we can just do something, 
| like say cut off the power, well, that might give Limpy some more time."
|      The Mystery Guest Star recognised the name. He knew a lot of 
| superheroes. The name might have sounded like one of the food themed 
| heroes that you would expect to be a member of the Legion of Supper 
| Heroes. Actually though, L-ALad was with the Legion of Net.Heroes.
|      Was this the Looniverse then? It didn't look like it. It was far 
| too detailed. The Mystery Guest Star glanced up at the moonlight 
| glinting through the trees. The canopy looked like a three dimensional 
| shape of slowly moving individual leaves. If this had been the 
| Looniverse, it would more likely have been a flat area of a repeating 
| moire pattern simulating movement.
|      No matter. Wherever this was, *when*ever this was, there was 
| another hero in need of assistance. There had been a chamber filled 
| with webs that the Mystery Guest Star had briefly glanced at earlier. 
| That would be the sensible place to look.
|      Then there was a regular thumping sound, and a giant man - naked 
| except for the obligatory pair of underpants just like in all the early 
| Marvel monster series - 

     CAW: For which we give thanks!

| slowly and ponderously made his way though the woods and towards the 
| house. Among the teenagers, the girls all screamed.
|      The Mystery Guest Star watched as the giant stopped before the
| house and stood there waiting. The Mystery Guest Star nodded grimly 
| to himself and then quietly slipped away. He needed to quickly reach 
| Limp-Asparagus Lad, aid him in his rescue mission, and find out where 
| the mind control ray was so that a stop could be put to this.

     CAW: You could just ask the kids if they know where the ray is.

|           ((((((((((OOOOO)))))))))
|      Down below, Limp-Asparagus Lad watched as Fist's scalp hair fell 
| out, his skin hardened into a chitinous substance, and extra eyes 
| sprouted irregularly across his face like a time lapse film of a 
| teenager developing acne.
|     "Did you really think you could approach the Great One without the 
| Children of the Spider knowing about it?" Fist rasped.
|     "No. I had expected to fight a giant spider, one way or another," 
| admitted Limp-Asparagus Lad without rancour. He didn't bother to add 
| that in his estimation he had not yet overcome enough Dramatic 
| obstacles so that in a final confrontation with Dr. Liverwurst 
| circumstances would be to his advantage. The inhabitants of this world 
| weren't aware that they were fictional, and Fist just wouldn't 
| understand the metaphysics of collecting Plot Coupons. Instead he 
| asked, "So, has the Great One infiltrated many of her offspring into 
| the Hell's Bats?
|     Fist laughed - a strange polysonic sound caused by his throat 
| continuing to metamorphose. "I am a Child of the Great One in loyalty 
| only," he exposited, clearly playing for time to continue his change in 
| L-ALad's estimation. "Once I was one of Von Velcro's weak little ape 
| things, but Dr. Liverwurst caught me exploring the tunnels. He decided 
| that since I was so interested in this chamber, I would be uplifted 
| into a spider man and serve both him and Great One as a spy in the Bats.

     Swordmaster: Doc Liverwurst really likes those hybridisation 
experiments, doesn't he?
     CAW: I wonder if he uses that Ninja Turtle mutagen stuff?

| Now trespasser, you will die!"
|     Fist leapt at the Legionnaire, who simply flew up a few feet. It 
| wasn't particularly far above the floor, but Fist seemed unable to jump 
| much higher than an average human. Floating just above Fist's grasp, 
| Limp-Asparagus Lad observed that for someone who was a combination of 
| human and spider, he was remarkably prosaic in appearance - he still 
| had two arms and two legs and his body mass hadn't redistributed itself 
| at all, so that his jeans and t-shirt and leather jacket still fit him. 
| In fact, he looked just like a normal human wearing rubber prosthetic 
| makeup on his head and hands. Oh well, this was a b-movie reality 
| after all.

     CAW: Yeah, but the multiple independently blinking eyes are a nice 

|      "Fist, I'm not impressed," said L-ALad as he floated back to the 
| ground away from the spider-biker. "Please stop trying to fight me. 
| You will only come off second best."
|      "Bull!" screamed Fist and jumped at Limp-Asparagus Lad again, 
| intending to tackle him before he could react. "How can you expect to 
| stop me!?"
|     Limp-Asparagus Lad gave him a single solid punch to the face. Fist's 
| eyes all lost their focus, and he collapsed unconscious to the floor.
|      "Because despite the mythology of the Spiderman comics, I know 
| that arachnids are neither particularly fast, or strong, or agile," the 
| Legionnaire told the oblivious changeling. "The proportional powers of 
| a spider won't give you any more advantage over me than a normal human 
| would have." Then he turned away, flew up to the nearest of the 
| cocoons, and began cutting them down.
|      This was a time consuming business, since the proportional 
| strength of spider silk was the one thing that *was* a significant 
| obstacle when scaled up to human size.
|      Limp-Asparagus Lad kept at least some of his attention alert for 
| the arrival of the Great One as he unwrapped the Greenberg siblings and 
| then used some water from the surrounding moat to wake them. The rising 
| water was now beginning to overflow over the central floor area, which 
| was pretty flat overall. It would not be long before he would have to 
| fly them away from here regardless of whether they had regained 
| consciousness or not. He assumed that the anti-gravitational powers of 
| the flightring.thingee would overcome the complications of trying to 
| handle two dead weights, but he hadn't had the opportunity to test the 
| notion.
|      Actually, it didn't take them very long to wake up at all, but by 
| that time the Great One was coming.

     CAW: Joel, is this spider the same as the Great One spider from 
Doctor Who's 'Planet of the Spiders'?
     Swordmaster: Only if it has a bad CSO outline.

|     The first thing that Pete became aware of was that he was lying on 
| the ground, staring at the ceiling where there was a giant spider. He 
| yelled and reflexively scuttled backwards, almost knocking into Limp-
| Asparagus Lad. Beside him, his sister screamed.
|     "Are you able to stand?" asked L-ALad.
|     "Wha? Uh, yeah. I think so. Who are you?"
|     "I am Limp-Asparagus Lad. The world's most boring superhero," 
| he said, introducing himself. Again. (The drawbacks of being in another 
| universe where they'd never heard of the LNH: having no reputation as a 
| hero.) "I am here to rescue you."
|     "From that!?" Linda gasped, keeping a wary eye on the giant spider 
| that was slowly stalking down towards them.
|      Limp-Asparagus Lad had been trying to decide which of the tunnels 
| would offer the best route of escape, or even if Fist's story of the 
| exit through the sea cave could be trusted. He glanced up at the 
| encroaching arachnid. "Yes. From that," he agreed calmly.
|     "Hey! This is one of Von Velcro's stupids," went Pete as he noticed 
| the unconscious man-spider. "At least, he's dressed like one of them."
|     "Yes," agreed L-ALad. "He said his name was Fist. Apparently he was 
| turned into a human/spider hybrid by Dr. Liverwurst."
|     Pete shuddered. "Another one?"
|     "I think we should leave," L-ALad said, having decided that the 
| long but known path back up to the house would be the best option.
|     "How?" demanded Pete. "There aren't any boats."
|     "We'll fly," explained the LNHer. "I will carry you. Please come 
| here and grab my waist and shoulders."
|     "It's getting closer," warned Linda as they did as the net.hero 
| asked.
|     "Do not be concerned about it," said Limp-Asparagus Lad. "It's 
| only a giant spider." Now that he had gained his Plot Coupon by 
| fighting *a* giant spider, he didn't see much point in staying around 
| to fight another one - even if the other one was apparently *the* 
| giant spider. Bluntly, Limp-Asparagus Lad made it a matter of 
| philosophical principle to only take Drama seriously on a meta-story 
| level for as long as was required. After that it could go hang.

     Swordmaster: You know, I wonder if Brenton can even write a story 
that doesn't have a meta-story reference or discussion.

|     Just as Limp-Asparagus Lad was about to take to the air with his 
| passengers, a looming shape rose out of the waters on the far sides of 
| the cavern and blew a blob of dark liquid at the Great One. The giant 
| spider was knocked from the web that it had been descending on, thrown 
| across the cave and landed on the opposite side. It's legs twitched, 
| but other than that it didn't move.
|     At the sight of the newcomer, Linda screamed. "It's another one of 
| Dr. Liverwurst's hybrid monsters!" exclaimed Pete at the sight of the 
| gigantic anthropomorphic squid that was eyeing them.
|      Limp-Asparagus Lad let go of the Greenbergs and walked towards the 
| huge being. "No. It's all right. He's a friend. I recognise him." And 
| this was true. The headband with 'SS' on it was a dead giveaway. "His 
| name is Suicide Squid."
| ---------------------------------------------------------------------
| Character Credits:
|      Limp-Asparagus Lad owned by Saxon Brenton. Created by Mystic 
| Mongoose (Robert Armstrong) and wReam (Ray Bingham).
|      CAW, Swordmaster, and the Squeaky Flying Rodent created by Badger 
| (Matt Rossi). Used with permission.
|      Suicide Squid is the rec.arts.comics.* mascot and is Public Domain.
|      All other characters created by Saxon Brenton.
|      All characters are owned by and copyright 2003 their creators 
| and/or owners.
| ----------
| Saxon Brenton   University of Technology city library, Sydney Australia
| The Librarian "liked people who loved and respected books. And the best 
| way to do that, in the Librarian's opinion, was to leave them on the 
| shelves where Nature intended them to be." Terry Pratchett, _Men At Arms_

     Threequarter Time Break
     CAW and the Squeaky Flying Rodent were wearing rubber spiders on 
their heads when Swordmaster found them. CAW was sitting building a 
diorama setting out of Lego blocks that went heavily for a spider web 
     "So, what's this in aid of?" asked Swordmaster.
     "Well Joel, I was just thinking how dull Limp-Asparagus Lad's Fight 
Scene with the giant spider was, so I was going to redo it properly."
     "I'm sure he'll be thrilled at such a candid critique of his 
fighting style," Swordmaster said. "CAW, he's 'The-Best-At-What-He-Does', 
and what he does..."
     "Isn't pretty?"
     "Is dull."
     "From the comic fans' point of view, they're the same thing." CAW 
pointed out. "I mean, he didn't even stop to fight the main spider. If 
Suicide Squid hadn't been turned up, the Great One wouldn't have gotten 
hit *at all*."
     "So, that's not how you're supposed to do it. Now, I've got the 
Great One's cavern ready for the rematch. And I've got Limp-Asparagus 
Lad," the robot said, holding up a Ken doll that had been dressed as the 
Man of Dull. "And the Great One." This proved to be a plush spider with 
a chocolate coloured body and a rainbow of legs. "And I've got some other 
people who have fought giant spiders who'll come and help him get it 
right. Let's see how it turns out."
     "This I have to see," said Swordmaster.
     CAW picked up the plush spider and began his skit.
     Spider doll: Ho ho ho. I have you now Limp-Asparagus Lad. Nothing 
can escape my Web Of Doom. 
     Limp-Asparagus Lad doll: I can.
     Spider doll: No you can't. You cannot possibly fight me and survive.
     Limp-Asparagus Lad doll: I'm not going to fight you. I'm just going 
to walk out of here. I've got to do my laundry this afternoon.
     Dr. Who doll: I am the John Pertwee era Dr. Who, who is all James 
Bond-like and dashing. You must not leave, Limp-Asparagus Lad. You must 
confront the giant spider and face your innermost fears.
     Limp-Asparagus Lad doll: I'm not afraid of spiders.
     Frodo and Sam dolls: We are! We are!
     Limp-Asparagus Lad doll: And what about you, Harry?
     Harry Potter doll: A bit. Unless it's one of Lord Voldmorte's 
minions, in which case I want to wrestle it into submission and spit in 
its eye.
     Dr. Who doll: Eyes.
     Harry Potter doll: Eyes. Yes, sorry. Wrestle it into submission and 
spit in its eyes.
     Spider doll: All this exposition is getting boring. I'm going to 
fight you now.
     CAW brings the spider doll across and makes in jump up and down on 
the heroes.
     Spider doll: Arrgghh!!
     Limp-Asparagus Lad doll: Oh all right, if we have to fight, let's 
get it over with.
     CAW puts down the spider doll, picks up the other dolls and makes 
them jump up and down on the spider.
     Hero dolls: Arrgghh!!
     Frodo and Sam dolls: We're not afraid of giant spiders anymore, 
because we've got this ATOMIC BAZOOKA!
     CAW brings out a suck-tipped dart gun, and has Frodo and Sam fire it 
at the spider.
     Spider doll: Ah! I'm hit!
     Finally CAW goes, "Ka-boom!" and pantomimes an atomic mushroom 
cloud. Then he looked at the dumbfounded Swordmaster and said, "And 
that's how you fight a giant spider."
     "Commercial sign in five seconds."
     "Thank God for that," said Swordmaster.
     "Commercial sign... now."

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