A tale calculated to be weird... LEGION OF REJECTED NET.HEROES #1 of 4 "Stupid Applicant Tricks" By Ben Rawluk ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ [Cover - The corner box has the usual LNH-imprint thingee in it, with "Mini-Series" scribbled in below it. The logo is done in the style of the old Legion of Net.Heroes ascii font, but with "REJECTED" in red above it, with a line pointing down between "of" and "Net.Heroes". The art itself is striking, with four net.heroes falling over each other while trying to attack some strance MECHA robot in the Peril Room, with Doc Stomper smirking in the background.] ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Darwin Elson quickly hurried up the steps of LNHQ, garbed in his black and white spandex costume. He just knew that the world would soon know the name of Kid Lurker, as soon as he joined the LNH. A big, wide, goofy grin plastered to his face, Darwin stepped through the main doors of LNHQ. The lobby was bigger than it looked in the photos of it, in Newsgroupweek Magazine. There were waiting chairs, with a table beside them (Covered in stacks of comics, for people to read while they waited), and back a little ways, you could see the mahogany desk of the LNH's receptionist. As Darwin headed towards the desk, the receptionist barely looked up from her computer screen, and pointed her long arm towards the left corridor. "LNH try-outs down there. Second door on the right. The Peril Room." was all she said, before dropping her hand down and returning to typing up a memo Browsing Boy wanted her to circulate, concerning old issues of S*ndm*n. Darwin nodded, and quickly headed down the corridor. Darwin noticed that the corridor was pretty damn long, for one thing. It seemed to go on forever, and he had only managed to pass the first door on the right. Finally, after a full ten minutes of walking, he found the second door. Or rather, it was a huge, metal, automatic door, with a keypad on the side, designed to give entrance. After several seconds of studying the pad, Darwin quickly pressed the key marked 'enter'. A digital voice cooed <<Access to Peril Room permitted, under the Try-Outs clause of the LNH constitution. Please enter at your own risk.>> Darwin thought the last comment was kind of curious, but dismissed as merely hyperbole, and stepped through the doorway, the metal door having slide into the wall. His eyes grew wide, as he stared at the inside of the Peril Room. It was big. Really big. It made the lobby look like a broom closet, it was so incredibly immense. Darwin glanced around, a bit awestruck by it all, and surveyed the Peril Room: it was in its basic, primary, inactive mode, with a desk and chair near the exit. At the desk sat a fairly good-looking man in a labcoat, who Darwin guessed was the LNH's resident scientist, Doctor Stomper. He was almost hidden behind a mounds of paper; stacks of application forms, insurance waivers and the like. Darwin noticed three other net.hero-types, but didn't recognize them. He assumed they were more wannabees, like himself. Doctor Stomper looked up from his papers, and finally spoke. "Ok, folks. I beieve you're first, Miss Burne." Stomper announced. "Or would you prefer I refer to you as..." "Flaming Lass, you wretched toe-rag!" Flaming Lass, who was garbed in a catchy spandex costume with red-and-yellow flame designs on it, retorted, and stepped forward. "I've got the power to FLAME!" "Hrm..ok...Flaming Lass..." Stomper mumbled, and clicked a key on the portable Peril-Room controller. Flaming Lass glanced around the room, as a variety of large, vaguely-mangaesque robots materialized, and began to advance towards her. "You call *this* state-of-the-art?! It just sucks!" Flaming Lass yelled, and burning-hot flames burst from her fingertips, charring the robots into so much useless spam. She quickly turned back to Stomper, and Darwin visibly shuddered. She would fierce competion, attitude problem aside. "So, am I in, you flea-ridden snot-ball in spandex?!" "Er...I regret to say, no. Based on your abilities, I have to reject you on the grounds that we have too many character with inflammatory-based powers already. I'm sorry." "Yeah, yeah! You suck, anyway..." Flaming Lass flamed, and grumbled her way over to the corner. In the 'intermission', Darwin quickly ran up and got an application form, filling it out faster than a speeding email. "Ok, people. Next, Scott Plott....I believe you call yourself Cross-Posting Lad?" Stomper inquired, as a young man in a purple-and-orange costume got up, and walked in front of the desk. Darwin glanced at his costume; it was unique, to say the least. On the front, an 'ACLNH' logo could be seen, and on the back, there was a 'RACC' logo. "Yep, that would be me." Scott glanced at Darwin, directly, and then turned back to Stomper. "Ready whenever you are." Stomper nodded, and a large holographic monster appeared, and ran towards Scott. The monster's fist went flying forward, as Scott made some unusual typing motions. The fist connected. Scott was thrown backwards, and crashed into the ground. "Oh my writer!" Stomper exclaimed, and jumped over the table with amazing dexterity. By the time Darwin, --or the final applicant, another girl-- had even stood up, Stomper was in the midst of examining the spandex-clothed corpse. "He's...he's dead." "Um..not quite." A voice explained, and all four net.heroes (Flaming Lass included, despite her anger) turned towards the door. STanding before them, having just entered from the corridor, was Scott. "My power is the ability to cross-post stuff to other newsgroups. As I was about to be killed, I used it, and a copy of me was cross-posted to RACC...then I cross-posted myself back here...so I'm a copy of a copy." Stomper, astonished by all this, stepped forward. "So...am I an LNHer?" Scott asked, a grin forming on his face. His hopes were high. "No." Stomper had rejected him. Scott was, in an instant, dejected. "I'm sorry...but we have enough problems with heroes faking their deaths...and the problems you power could cause...we don't want a RETCON HOUR II: CRY.SIG OF INFINITE CROSS-POSTING LADS..." "Uh..um..ok...I guess..." Scott mumbled,m and stepped over by the exit, where he slumped to the ground. Stomper, of course, moved on. He had some much-needed study to do, and wanted this of with as quickly as possible. "Um...our next candidate is Copy Queen...alias Edna Van Warren." Edna stepped forward, her long red hair flowing, a grin on her face. "I can copy objects and tech into .gif files, and use 'em later!" She explained as the Peril Room was activated. A giant robot appeared. Copy Queen concentrated, and a duplicate robot appeared, a .gif file of the original. Edna chuckled as her 'bot faced off against the original. But the real robot quickly dispatched the slow, lagged .gif. "Oh darn..." Edna grumbled. "It took up a lot of my power's RAM, and lagged it..." Edna's grin vanished. Stomper wasted no time with Edna. "I'm sorry, Copy Queen, but you're .gifs are too slow and lagged. I have to reject your for LNH membership." Edna sadly nodded, and wandered off to have a seat for the final try-out. "Ok, Kid Lurker...you're next." Stomper mumbled, and activated the Peril Roomw as soon as Darwin was ready. A large group of robots attacked Darwin, and several nearly took him out, but, he managed to touch one of the metal discs attached to his wristbands, and faded from view, as the fist passed through him. The Peril Room deactivated, and Darwin stepped forward. "So, Doc...am I in the Legion?" Stomper, for the first time this issue, was thoughtful. After a moment of recollection, he explained, "Well, you do have a lot of potential, but you are a bit slow at exerting your power, which is dangerous in battle. Also, you lurking ability is already easy to find in the LNH. "Oh..I see..." Darwin mumbled, and Stomper directed the four out of the Peril Room. Before they headed out, Darwin asked, "Don't we get flying-belt.thingees or something?" "Um..sorry...we don't do that here." Stomper replied. --- Scott noted that the way back to the lobby was much shorter than the one to the Peril Room. He wondered about this; Scott had done some research on the LNH, and assumed that the lenth of the hallway was altered by the nature of the building; some researchers claimed that LNHQ was located on a "nexus of reality", and the architecture was variable because of that. He glanced back at the others: Kid Lurker, Copy Queen and Flaming Lass (Who was swearing the whole way back). Now, maybe it was just him, but it did seem like the patchwork of rejected applicants just screamed 'NEW SUPER-TEAM!" "Stupid razzlefrazz fraggin' dumbass sucky pseudoscientist!..." Flaming Lass muttered as the four net.heroes stepped out onto the street. Her not-so-nice reverie was interrupted by Cross-Posting Lad stopping them. "Um...you guys...we may not know each other that well..." CPL began. "Got that right, Cheesecake-for-brains..." FL interrupted. "*ahem*...But I see the four of us becoming a super-team..what'dya think?" "I suppose..better than nothing, I guess." Copy Queen muttered. "Why not?" Kid Lurker returned. "Why the hell not, freezer-nose?!" FL replied. "Then its settled." "Seems like pretty tame origin sequence. The old 'let's form a team' again." KL commented. "How about the Rejects?" "Nah...there's the R.E.J.E.C.T.S. running around." "The Legion of Substitute Net.Heroes?" "There already is one." "Oh." "How about....The Legion of Rejected Net.Heroes!?" KL shouted. "Sounds good to me." CQ mumbled, nonchalantly. "Why not?" CPL said. "&*%*%&^%" FL cursed. Then its settled! We're the core of the LRNH...the World's Mightiest...er...second..third...in the top 100 of teh world's Mightiest Heroes!" CPL grinned, and everyone posed in a camera-like fashion. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Next: #2 of 4! The LRNH break into LNHQ! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Kid Lurker and the rest of the LRNH are mine. Stomper is public domainBack to the Index.