Terror in Got.ham City: The Heroine. The Mouse. The Ninja. ...and the other guy... Writers Block Woman flew gracefully (how else?) to the Got.ham Museum. It was just as gothic close up as it had been from the police HQ roof. Gargoyles dotted it, grinning grotesquely. WBW observed them while she pondered the question of how to get in. Spying an open skylight, she floated gently through it and hovered there. Looking down, she observed the tyrannosaurus rex skeleton at the centre of the room, and then looked around her. It looked as though she was in the atrium of the museum. The ceiling was very high (and dotted with the aforementioned skylights), and the floor was marble tile. WBW drifted gently down to the floor and looked around. There were four doorways leading out of the atrium, labelled respectively: "Past", "Present", "Future", and "Out of Continuity". Writers Block Woman selected the latter as her destination and walked into the hallway. Peering from the mouth of the T-Rex, Ninja-san watched her go and loosened his katana in its sheath. _-~-_ Mouse paused and took a moment to catch her breath. For a moment she forgot herself and peered over the edge of the building she was on. Vertigo lunged at her, and she pulled back rapidly. "Why am I doing this?" she asked herself. "To catch a nut-case who can kill people with his bare hands, of course. Sometimes I ask myself some really stupid questions." Putting her hand on the ladder she had used to get on the roof, Mouse pushed herself up, and scanned the nightline, looking for lunatics, and feeling glad she hadn't brought a mirror along. Well, there was no-one but her up here. One roof down, several hundred to go. The thump behind her reminded her to never think thoughts like that again. "Ah, fair maiden," she heard hissed in a low voice behind her. "What sweet justice shall be visited upon you this dark night?" Turning around slowly, Mouse said "Spouting almost Shakespearian poetry while threatening people... your name wouldn't happen to be Kuno Tatewaki, would it?" "You may call me Karmic Death," said Karmic Death. "But you'd better call quick, because you don't have much time." Mouse took in the black body suit, the red arms sleeves and the white hood that covered his hair. "Been down with the homeboys one too many times, I see." Karmic Death started walking towards her, although 'stalking' would be a better word. "And Holy Judgement shall be visited upon all. Although only one at a time." Mouse eyed his hands. No gloves. Ah. Insert comment here about valour and its better part. Mouse turned and ran, then jumped...and looked down to see only the alleyway far below her. _-~-_ Writers Block Woman regretfully tore herself away from a display of Princess Diana's dresses and returned to her quest for Ultimate Ninja's nun-chuks. She wandered aimlessly down the corridors, examining each display case as she passed. Relics of Retcon Hour littered one case, whilst another contained coasters and napkins from the Rac.Cafe, autographed by various authors and characters, and frequently covered with blood, bits of heads and mud. Other display cases held yet more LNH history - one of Aeneas' trenchcoats, a couple of New Look Lass' old costumes, an old bowler hat belonging to Deductive Logic Man, a pair of Ultimate Ninja's nun-chuks, some of Hamster Man's... ah... paper litter, a few bits of Panta's fur and an _extremely_ seedy and stale looking old cheesecake. "Ewwww." said Writers Block Woman, looking at it. Then, "Wait a minute!" Cheesecake, fur, paper... "The nun-chuks!" cried Writers Block Woman. "Cool!" "It is, as you say," said a soft voice behind her, "most cool." Writers Block Woman swivelled around to see a black clad figure behind her. Ninja-san brought his sword up to guard position. "So, you must be the evil guy." Writers Block Woman said. "Really?" Ninja-san smiled under his mask. "What gave me away?" "Uh, nothing really. I mean, you could be someone else, or even a hero, but that wouldn't explain your presence here, in a locked, closed museum, eying some weapons that don't belong to you proprietarily. Is that a word?" "Not that I'm aware of," said Ninja-san, who was by now somewhat confused, a not uncommon occurence when engaging Writers Block Woman in conversation. "As it happens, I am indeed 'the evil guy', although I am more commonly known as Ninja-san, or occasionally 'argh! Nonono please don't hurt me!!! AAAAURK!' Please introduce yourself, stranger." Writers Block Woman drew herself up to her full height. "I am Writers Block Woman! A hero and a lady and fully-fledged member of the LNH!" "A most fortunate occurence!" exclaimed Ninja-san. "Could it be that you have met him?" "Him who?" "_Him_. Ultimate Ninja!" "Oh _him_." Writers Block Woman said. "Well, you know, not properly. We're not good friends if that's what you mean. I mean, I met him when I joined of course, and we bump into each other in the corridors sometimes, and occasionally you see him at the food fights in the cafeteria." "Food fights?" repeated Ninja-san. "Ultimate Ninja partakes in FOOD FIGHTS?!" "He doesn't partake so much as 'accidentally walk into'," explained Writers Block Woman. "Occasionally at exactly the wrong time." "How can _he_ walk in at the wrong time?" Ninja-san demanded. "Oh, it's quite easy." Writers Block Woman said. "What normally happens is he walks in the doorway right after THIS happens!" so saying she grabbed up the cheesecake and flung it at Ninja-san. It impacted nicely on his face, and the plate slowly slipped off. Ninja-san stared at her through the remaining bits of cheesecake stuck to his facemask. WBW giggled, "That's what he usually looks like afterwards too!" "Really," said Ninja-san, wiping the remainder of the dessert from his facemask. "And what usually happens next?" "Um, usually everyone runs for it," Writers Block Woman said, taking a firm grip on the nun-chuks. "Most wise of them," said Ninja-san, bringing his sword up preparatory to skewering WBW. "You may try it if you feel it will do you any good!" Writers Block Woman smiled angelically at him and floated upwards. "Nyeah nyenny nyeah nyeah." she jeered. Ninja-san took a closer hold of his sword. "_Right_." He leapt up into the air and almost nailed Writers Block Woman with a sweeping cut. "Yipes!" WBW yelped, dodging the blow. Ninja-san fell back to the ground and landed perfectly. He stared at her. Writers Block Woman looked around for a safe area. Unfortunately the roof in this room was much lower than in the atrium, so that Ninja-san could get within striking distance of her if he jumped. Which, unfortunately, it seemed he could do particularly well. Ninja-san coiled in preparation for another jump. Writers Block Woman quickly took cover behind a beam. Ninja-san jumped, swung his sword at her in a diagonal downwards motion and gracefully kicked the beam after the sword stroke, spinning around in a circle and landing again. WBW stared in shock as the top half of the beam separated neatly where Ninja-san had sliced through it and began gently sliding towards her from the impact of his kick. "Ooooookay... time for a drastic re-evaluation of my cunning plan here." said Writers Block Woman. "Run away!" Ninja-san bunched for another jump as she flew away as carefully as possible, using beams for cover as she did. _-~-_ Momentum knocked Mouse against the wall of the building on the other side of the alleyway, and she scrabbled to get a handhold, all the while trying to draw breath. She heaved herself over the wall, then popped her head up to see what Karmic Death was doing. Karmic Death was looking right at her, but from across the alleyway, fortunately still on the other building. "So, you think to flee the peace I bring you. Such a shame. I will just have to hunt you down harder, then." "Don't go to any trouble on my account," Mouse muttered, as she picked herself up and started searching for a way off this rooftop. She glanced back, but Karmic Death wasn't following her. Guess he wasn't so stupid as to try to leap ove alleyways. Mouse made her way to another rooftop, and from there down onto the street. Now, what to do, what to do. Oh, the joys of actually having a plan. "If only Easy Going Lad was here," Mouse said to herself. "Check that, if only anyone else was here and I wasn't." "I'm going to catch you, little fishie, I'm going to catch you, little fishie, I'm going to catch you, little fishie, 'Cos I like catching fish." Mouse doubted the song was being sung by Danny John-Jules, and looked around for something to use. Spying something that at least might be a temporary defense, she turned around, now armed with something more than hope. "Has the fishie decided to give up?" asked Karmic Death, coming towards her. "And after swimming so little? Oh well, such is the life of a fisherman. Sometimes the net pulls itself in." "Oh, man, you make Easily-Discovered Man sound sane." Karmic Death brought his hands up, and lunged at Mouse. Who promptly brought out the garbage lids she'd grabbed and thrust them in the way of the incoming hands. Hands and metal met with a resounding clang. Karmic Death snatched his hands back. "Ow," he said, cross. "I would hardly think you'd give me a thousand dollar reward," Mouse said. "Here, catch." She frisbeed the lids into Karmic Death, then took the opportunity to get out of the way. "At least there's always Plan B. Running away is never a bad option." Mouse ran through the back alleys of Got.ham. Luckily, the alleys were empty. Word must have spread around about these guys. Only the truly mad would be out tonight. "Shall judgement be far behind? You carry it with yourself, so it will never be far away from you." Which meant the truly mad was right behind her. Oh, yeah, Mouse loved this. She lived for situations like this. At least, her life seemed full of situations like this, which must count for something. She turned another corner, and ran along it before stopping short. She checked once. Twice. Thrice. No exit other than the way she came in. Typical. She heard Karmic Death enter the mouth of the alleyway, but couldn't bear to turn around just yet. Looking for a fourth time, Mouse spotted a door in one of the buildings. Frantically she grabbed the handle, but it didn't budge. She glanced at Karmic Death. He was just standing there, smiling. "Grin this one off." Mouse gauged distances, readied herself, and executed a perfect roundhouse, high point kick, ending with full impact on the door, sending all her force into it. "Ow. Ow. Ow. Ow. Ow." Pain blocked her from screaming too loudly. Who would have thought a door would be so solid? Perhaps she should have taken karate classes instead of just watching them. Hobbling, she finally turned around to face Karmic Death. And Karmic Death approached with all due deliberation. _-~-_ Writers Block Woman gracefully flipped backwards in midair. "Ha ha!" she yelled, "Missed me!" Yet another beam separated and began heading towards her. "Not again!" she groaned. She dodged the slow-moving object and then yelped as Ninja-san aimed a sweeping kick at her. She blocked the kick with Ultimate Ninja's nun-chuks and retaliated by aiming a punch at Ninja-san. "An opening!" Ninja-san grabbed her arm and hung on. Usually this maneuver would result in the person being grabbed being flipped over onto the ground. However, since this happened roughly 3 metres off the floor, what actually happened was that Writers Block Woman flipped upside down, whilst Ninja-san hung onto her arm. Her long blonde hair fell into his face, temporarily blinding him. "Let. Go." Writers Block Woman gritted out. "Give me the nun-chuks." demanded Ninja-san. "Nuh-uh." Writers Block Woman grunted. "You sound perturbed, is something the matter?" Ninja-san asked sweetly. "All of the blood is flowing into my head." replied WBW. "I'm feeling quite faint." she floated further upwards. "How good are you at 22 metre landings?" "Better than you would think," Ninja-san replied. "But you can't go that high in these corridors." He finally cleared the hair away and looked down. "Ah." Sometime during the last action sequence they'd floated into the museum atrium, and were rapidly gaining height, Ninja-san took a firmer grasp on Writers Block Woman's arm. "I can give you a wonderful diet and exercise regime." WBW gasped as he did so. "It'll get rid of all those excess pounds." "_What_ excess pounds?!" Ninja-san demanded. "Nrgh." Writers Block Woman shook her head and gritted her teeth. "Gah! That's it!" Ninja-san raised his sword as her hair fell back in his face. "What are you doing?" Writers Block Woman demanded. "I'm going to clear away this... mess!" Ninja-san prepared to swing. "DON'T YOU _TOUCH_ MY HAIR!!!!!!!" WBW shrieked. She abruptly stopped flying. "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!" They both screamed as they plummeted towards the floor. Luckily, the skull of the T-Rex broke their fall. "Oof!" Ninja-san bounced off the skull, twisted, and hit the floor in a roll. He came out of it and looked around. Writers Block Woman was lying groaning on the T-Rex's head. He quickly grasped his katana and sliced through the leg bones of the skeleton. It toppled, slowly and majestically, and smashed into several dozen pieces against the nearest beam. Writers Block Woman fell with it, but managed to avoid disintegration on the way down. Triumphantly, Ninja-san took a formal stance over her, katana held in both hands. "Farewell my opponent." he raised the sword high. WBW looked up at him. There was a rumbling noise. Ninja-san and WBW looked over at the beam the T-Rex had hit. It was one that Ninja-san had sliced during the battle. It slowly began to slide. The roof started to shudder, as did the floor... "Er." said Writers Block Woman. "How many of those things did you cut through?" "Uhhhhh..." Ninja-san looked around at the creaking museum. "One too many I think." The skylights shattered, WBW and Ninja-san shielded their heads as glass fell around them. "Time to leave," said Ninja-san. "Couldn't agree more," said WBW. "I wasn't talking to you." said Ninja-san, slamming the hilt of his katana into the back of Writers Block Womans' head. She slumped to the floor. Ninja-san looked frantically around for the nun-chuks. There they were! He started towards them, and a large chunk of stone landed just in front of him. "No!" he moved around it and tried to get to the nun-chuks once more. More of the ceiling started to cave in. "NOOOO!!!" Furiously he looked around him, then in anger he turned to WBW. "Guard the nun-chuks well in your tomb, opponent. I shall return for them one day." With that, Ninja-san fled the building, seconds before the roof completely collapsed. _-~-_ Police Commissioner Hamilton watched as the Got.ham museum ponderously began its collapse. He buried his head in his hands. Chief Repp patted him on the back gently, and went in search of coffee. Lots of coffee. _-~-_ Mouse looked at Karmic Death sauntering towards her, and held her leg grimly, then did the only thing she could. Mutter under her breath. **Give up. Give up. Give up.** Karmic Death paused, then frowned. He was still blocking the alleyway, but his stance provided Mouse with her needed escape route. She ducked and tumbled between his legs. Or, to be more accurate in the face of current society's feeling about honesty, she tried to duck and tumble, and instead fell and slid. On her side with the sore leg. "Gaah," she yelled incoherently. Still, she was now in place to do something useful. Mouse raised her good leg, and booted Karmic Death in the rear, sending him sprawling. She picked herself up while she could, and quickly limped away. Around a corner or two, she stopped, her leg throbbing. All she needed was a few hours rest, a good meal, maybe a good book by anyone other than L. Ron Hubbarb, and she'd be all right. "Now. You. Die." Mouse sighed, her precognition up to its usual standards. If she was lucky, he would only hurt her. Mouse snorted. If she had had any luck, she wouldn't have been here in the first place. Karmic Death lunged out of the darkness at her, and she tumbled backwards to get out of his way. Mouse grabbed a bottle off the ground, and threw it at him, more as a diversion than any real attack. She made it out onto a street, with proper shops and everything, but anyone nearby was quickly leaving the area. Something whacked into her back, and she noticed a garbage can fall to the side as the street came up to met her. She lay in a puddle, just groaning, when a hand hauled her bodily upright. Her eyes met those of Karmic Death. "The judge has decided a different fate for you. Death slow and painful." "And to think I didn't want to get you anything for Christmas." "Die!" Karmic Death yelled, and threw Mouse through a plate glass window that served as the front to a plant shop. Mouse's last thought before the impact onto the pot plants bequeathed unconsciousness onto her was: I hope I don't get poison ivy. _-~-_ Mouse woke up to hear someone screaming. "... destroyed the whole museum you incompetent buffoon! Do you have any idea how much damage you caused?! We may never be able to restore everything!! And furthermore... *URK*" Mouse looked at the man whose throat she had grabbed. "I hurt." she said slowly. "I hurt a very great deal. Some maniac threw me through a window. This is not a tactic guaranteed to make me happy. When I am unhappy, people in the near vicinity get hurt. If you can follow this argument and see my reasoning, you are too close." She released him and tottered back to her bed. The man sputtered. "Do you have any idea who I am?" "No," said Mouse. "Nor do I care. Go. Away." "Mouse?" "Wha... Mu... uh, I mean, Writers Block Woman?!" Mouse turned around. Writers Block Woman waved gingerly from the bed next to hers. "Hi darling, how was your flight?" she asked brightly, wincing. "Short, low and rather sharp at the end." replied Mouse. "Oh dear, you didn't encounter any turbulence did you?" "Not until I hit the ground." "Perhaps you should have worn some of those air-sickness strips." said WBW concernedly. "I think body armour would have been more useful," Mouse replied. "Who is this bozo?" The Commissioner suddenly realised he had an opening. "You blithering idiot!" he yelled at WBW. "Do you realise what you've done?" "Uh, prevented Ninja-san from stealing Ultimate Ninja' nunchuks?" WBW guessed. "You've DESTROYED the Got.ham Museum! That's what you've done! You numbskull!" Mouse, eyes narrowed, decided that now was a good time to make her prescence felt. "_Excuse_ me," she said acidly. "But I'm _trying_ to get better here, and your yelling is seriously impairing my body's capacity to repair itself." Commissioner Hamilton stared at her. Mouse sighed. "It's not bad enough that some _psycho_ tries to kill me, but I have to have my peace interrupted too? The gods must hate me. And as for Got.ham City, city of safety, ha! The Tourism Board will hear about this!" Commissioner Hamilton looked at her sharply. "That's right, you're that tourist that got thrown through a window." Mouse winced in memory. "And it was a very _hard_ window. So if you don't mind...?" Commissioner Hamilton failed to take the hint and glared at her. "What did you think you were doing wandering around at night in that area? Are you some kind of stupid hero like _her_?" Mouse snarled, "Listen bozo, if you think you can do better why'd you light up that giant moth-attractor last night? _You_ called _us_ remember? I was just passing through and thought I'd try to help and what do I get? Grief! Well if you don't like our work you're welcome to call in any other hero. Cheesecake-Eater Lad perhaps. Or how about Parking-Karma Kid, or Hamster Lad, or Bandwagon Chick, or the Alt.Ter.Net.Tives, if you think you can find them, or Easily-Discovered Man maybe. Or how about Vigilante Guy? Or maybe the Alt.Riders, random property damage and death supremos?" By this point she had the Commissioner backed into a corner and was jabbing a finger into his chest with every suggestion. "You want to go get someone else to do this you go for it. But in the meantime I _hurt_, and I _got_ hurt doing _your_ job, which is protecting this city. So why don't you go get some donuts and leave _us_ to do what we do best? We need rest right now if we're going to fix _your_ mistakes." "I, uh, we'll continue this conversation later," said the Commissioner to WBW. He hurried out of the room, the Chief in close pursuit. Mouse growled as they went, and WBW let out a sigh, then turned to her daughter. "So, fill me in." she prompted. The two women spent the next three hours enjoyably catching up on all the details. "... and then Lionel told Kirsty that he'd truly loved her all the time, but _he_ thought _she_ was in love with Richard, and didn't want to ruin her happiness so he nobly stood aside. Well, there were lots of tears, but then the pilot lost control of the helicopter and who should be first on the accident scene but Rachel and Nick! So pulling together they managed to rescue the twosome, at the same time confirmed their own feelings about each other. And that's where the series finale of _Shortland Street_ ended." "How wonderful!" squeaked Writers Block Woman. "Now tell me about this fight you got into." The two women then spent the next 15 minutes discussing the battles they'd had with Ninja-san and Karmic Death last night. "So that's how I wound up here." said Mouse. "So, what are we going to do about those two nutcases?" "I don't know," said Writers Block Woman thoughtfully. "We'll have to either track them down, or wait for them to make their next moves." "I don't think we're really in any condition to go out looking for them," said Mouse. "Better to wait." "Yes," said Writers Block Woman. "We'll monitor the situation from here." She picked up the remote control for the TV attached to the ceiling and clicked it on. "Oh! Forever Knight!" Mouse watched as WBW lost herself in the TV show, sighed, pulled her walkman out of the drawer next to her bed, found a news station, and settled back. "So psycho-boy," she murmured. "Whatcha gonna do?" -------------------------------------------------------------------------- NEXT TIME: Mouse vs. Karmic Death vs. Ninja-san vs. Writers Block Woman! Credits: -------- Either belongs to Jaelle or Jamas. Jess's notes: As Jamas said, this story has been brewing for some time, and then took even longer being written (mostly my fault - too many stories and work as well - bleah). I'd like to give Jamas a lot of the credit (or blame, depending on how you feel about this story :-) for the plotline. As anyone who's read my work critically knows, I consider the plot of a story the vehicle by which I get to the punchline. I don't ignore it, but I've always liked to keep my plots simple (and silly. Always silly). I've always been envious of people like Tick, Dave and Marie, who can come up with these wonderfully convoluted plotlines. My style of slapstick humour doesn't really lend itself to that sort of thing. Maybe in another title. Anyway, so Jamas wound up putting together most of the plot, and I got to do the "funny bits", although Jamas did some amusing scenes as well. I suppose I should tell you something about one of the jokes that I made. Oh yeah, the Museum. It seems like every American museum I see in movies has a t-rex skeleton in the foyer. Does anyone know why this is? Or maybe it's the same museum over and over again. Anyway, I wanted to have one in this story. Then, after I'd collapsed the museum on top of it and finished all my sections I went to the movies - and saw the promo of the new Godzilla flick in which Godzilla stands on a t-rex skeleton in the foyer of the New York Museum of Natural History (shades of Godzilla Meets Bambi). Argh! Oh well. At least it proves my theory that all American museums have tyrannosaurus rex skeletons in the foyer. Our museum (well, the old one, it's under renovation at the moment) had a model of a ship and a marae (Maori meeting house) in the foyer as I recall. Must be a cultural thing. JaelleBack to the Index.