Splendid initiates an info-dump and Congo Jack fights with his brother.
Splendid stepped out of the wormhole from the recycling plant into his childhood bedroom. There, he spent some time quietly sulking amid the empty mansion. Eventually, he decided to see if he could track down Mrs. Perez to make amends. He stepped into the luxurious office of his father, searching through the files which contained information on his family’s past and current employees. Noticing the Perez family was conspicuously absent from the cabinets, Splendid recalled seeing his father accessing a hidden safe when he was younger. Behind a portrait of rifle-wielding men and hunting dogs, Splendid found the safe guarded by a combination pad and retinal scanners. He created a wormhole to bypass the safe door, reaching in to pull out 4 files and a strange box. Splendid proceeded to methodically open each file to reveal the following:
A file labeled Arthur
- Adoption paperwork for Arthur Greenburg
- “Well that explains the lack of love…”
- News clippings of the utter destruction of a large estate
- Damage was akin to an atom bomb
- A supervillain plot was suspected to be the cause
- The sole survivor was a very young child: Arthur Greenburg
- Medical files for Arthur
- Pediatrician records written by Dr. Light who visited every 6 months
- Many graphs with sharp peaks and dips
- Comments suggesting that Arthur’s powers were manifesting
- Recommended an increased dosage of the power neutralizer
Splendid felt guilty, hopeless and insecure after prying into this file. He placed it all back into the safe.
A slender file labeled Perez
- Pictures of the injuries and radiation burns on America Perez
- Termination letter for Maria Perez
- Fired without a reference for theft
- Contact information for Maria
Splendid kept the contact information and put the rest of the file back into the safe.
A file labeled Spider
- A complicated series of bank records and transactions
Splendid just placed this back into the safe, assuming everything was on the up and up.
A file labeled Blight
- A thin sheet of metal
- A birth certificate for Walter Dokes, April 20, 2148
- “Wait a minute, that’s the future!”
- Next to the name was a superscript mark: M
- A birth certificate for Walter Dokes, April 20, 2148
- A very thin rolled up piece of plastic
- Unrolled into something resembling a transparent place mat
- When fully unrolled, a light projection of an image appeared
- A fusion design of a Windows logo superimposed on an Apple logo
- Voice speaks from the projection
- Hold still while we identify.
- I’m sorry, we don’t recognize you.
- Good day.
After the device turned itself off, a confused Splendid put the file back the way he found it.
Splendid turned his attention to the strange box, the last item in the safe. It was made of a dull metal, possibly lead, and was heavier than it looked. Splendid opened it, initially holding the opening away from himself, revealing a strange humming noise from within. Contained within the small box was a warped piece of time and space, similar to a wormhole, which felt unstable and chaotic. Curiosity led Splendid to stick a pencil into the box, resulting in an explosion of the splintered writing instrument being tossed back at him. He then focused his powers onto the box, stabilizing its contents. What was once a whirling mass of energy now showed a fisheye-lens view of Halcyon City as seen from above. What Splendid knew to be fields and ocean outside of the city were occupied by more buildings as the city seemed to stretch to the horizon. With flying cars and crystalline ships zipping through the sky, and people flashing in and out of teleportation tubes, Splendid realized he held in his hands a stable wormhole to the future. He carefully withdrew his power from the wormhole, reverting it to its previous state. Splendid closed the lid most of the way before placing the box back into the safe.
In Director Welker’s office, Yancy Fry Jr. stepped before Congo Jack, green glowing alien sword in hand. Yancy explained that Aegis is putting together a special team, and asked his brother to start calling him Cosmic Jack. Congo Jack protested, complaining about how Yancy always copied him and stole his ideas. A quick argument between the brothers started, complete with taunts, until Congo Jack provoked Cosmic Jack to a fight to prove his heroing abilities. The two would have gladly held the fight right there and then, but Congo Jack was without his gear. Instead, they agreed to fight back at the apartment. Congo Jack said he would text Cosmic Jack when it was time for the fight. Congo Jack flipped off Cosmic Jack and Director Welker on his way out of the office. When Congo Jack met up with the waiting Spook in the lobby, he complained about how his brother stole everything he did, and also asked her to remind him to text his brother when they got back. Spook expressed her puzzlement regarding sibling relationships as the two of them walked back toward the penthouse.
Congo Jack suddenly decided on a detour to the pawn shop and Spook just followed along. Stepping into Young’s Curiosities and Pawnables, Jack noticed Mr. Young behind the counter and no green alien sword hanging on the wall. Jack steps up and asked the shop owner if they had a sword better that the alien sword up for sale. Mr. Young ducked down to access the electronic safe under the counter. He pulled out a two foot long box, gold designs inlaid into the black wood. Sitting upon a black velvet pillow inside the box was a long blue dagger with a cluster of sapphires at the hilt. According to ancient tales, the sword drinks the life force of its victims, using it to bring mundane objects to life. All of the sword’s past wielders have gone insane. After balking at the sword’s $25,000 price, Jack settled on a stainless steel katana for 50 dollars. He also wanted a boxing glove that stunned whomever it hit, which wasn’t available in the shop, so he settled for a pair of boxing gloves and a stun gun for 35 dollars. After Jack was done with his shopping, Spook wanted to do some shopping of her own at the grocery store for Halloween-related goodies.
Cobalt and Inkling returned to the lobby of The A-maze-ing Toy Company and the camera crew they left behind. Cobalt bounded up to them, excitedly babbling on about how the board of directors would go through all of their paperwork and talk to their lawyers. As Cobalt and Inkling headed back toward Fraidy Kat’s place, Cobalt shot the team a group text about how they spoke with the toy company about the contract and how great they feel now that they saved all those people. Respawn, having his typical meal at Frydonalds after training with the Spider, responded that he wished he was there to help with the toy company since he had also been concerned about the well being of the board of directors; however, as things seemed like they’d been taken care of, he decided to head back to the penthouse.
Splendid decided he wanted to find Maria Perez, giving her $100,000 from his trust fund along with an arranged flower basket as part of his apology. Due to the large amount he wished to withdraw from his trust, Splendid needed to clear it by Gary Bonds. Calling his trust fund manager on the phone, Splendid tells Gary that he needed the money to make amends for something, feeling it was the least he can do. Gary tried to dissuade Splendid on withdrawing such a large amount, but relented in the end, sending a $100,000 cashier’s check to the mansion by courier. The sealed envelope arrived within the hour and Splendid went to a local florist for an appropriate flower arrangement to say “sorry” with. Hailing an Uber, Splendid proceeded to the worst neighborhood in the city, a bouquet of yellow roses in one hand, and an envelope containing a nameless check in the other.
The last known address for Maria Perez led to a set of cramped apartments. A Spanish language program blared from a TV from within as Splendid ascended the narrow stairs to knock on the door. The sound of a chain sliding was heard before the door creaked open to reveal a woman whom Splendid recognized from the periphery of his childhood memories. The woman before him, however, looked much more grey and tired. After a short period of silent stares, Splendid addressed her as Ms. Perez and introduced himself as Arthur Banks. He started to apologize, recognizing that he had caused her and her family great pain in his childhood, and handed her both gifts. Arthur was shielded from his consequences throughout his life and he didn’t feel good about it. Maria quietly told him that there was no stopping her daughter, which Arthur acknowledged. But he was here because he genuinely felt bad, not to stop America in her path of vengeance. Maria stepped forward to hug Arthur as she started to cry, telling Arthur he was a better man than his father ever was. Maria invited him in for dinner, and as Arthur sat down for the meal, he realized that his mom’s special burritos weren’t actually his mom’s after all.
Back at the penthouse, Congo Jack texted his brother, “time to you’re going down sucker” to call Yancy over for the fight. As Jack, Inkling, Spook and Cobalt gathered around the pizza Cobalt brought back, there was a knock on the door. Yancy was at the door, alien sword slung across his back and a utility belt with pouches full of unknown contents around his waist, asking to fight Phil. Congo Jack made his first move, giving Cosmic Jack a face full of pocket-spiders. When Congo swiped the alien sword from his thrashing brother’s back, there was a jolt of electricity that passed through his body from the sword. Cosmic lunged at Congo, yelling for the thief to return the stolen sword. Congo dodged the charge, but as he moved, the tip of the alien sword sliced through the air, cutting a hole in reality. Long, furry, glowing red legs stuck out through the rift, as a trans-dimensional fire spider emerged and started snapping at anyone close. Spook, deciding that this was the usual sort of shenanigans which she wanted no part of, turned the music up and returned to the kitchen to continue her Halloween prep. Inkling watched the show, munching on a slice of pizza. Cobalt watched on fascinated while wondering if they should do something to help. Respawn emerges from his room from the commotion, and freaked out at the sight of the spider. Respawn ran toward the intruder, as Congo Jack taunted the beast as a distraction, punching it so hard in the face that it burst back into the portal, sending a shower of spider guts and appendages around the opening.
After catching up on the situation between the two Jacks, Respawn told them to take their fight outside. Cosmic started complaining about how the fight had been going so far, saying that he would tell on Phil to their dad. Congo Jack argued back, teasing his brother as he snatched the safari hat from him. Congo scribbled the note ”To Frank Welker.
This is a m This is from Congo Jack. From Colonel Mutumbe” before tossing it back. Cobalt asked why the two brothers were fighting, something they didn’t understand as an only child in their family. Congo Jack said it was because of Welker making Yancy a superhero, as well as the stealing of his 7-leaf clover. Cobalt then proposed that Congo Jack trade the alien sword to Cosmic Jack for the 7-leaf clover. After some hesitation, both Jacks agree and shook on it, with no “takesy backsies”. Cobalt offered Cosmic Jack a slice of pizza and swept Congo Jack up in a kiss of celebration of their no-kill resolution to the fight.
Splendid stepped into the penthouse doorway, his eyes sweeping from his kissing teammates to the sea soaked living room, errant starfish, loose spiders, fire spider remains, and the cotton spiderweb wall where the french doors had been. “Wha…?” was all he was able to say. Congo Jack explained about the drone “attack”, Spook offered a freshly made caramel apple, and Cobalt started to wrangle the loose spiders at Splendid’s request. Cobalt also excitedly told Splendid that they’re going to be on TV on Fraidy Kat’s reality show. Splendid explained that he had gone home, did some thinking, and went to apologize to Maria Perez. Respawn proposed that Splendid expand on his apology by calling a press conference and making a “foundation for the reparations of… super hero fuckery” or something as a way to make up for what happened in the past. Cobalt started to praise the goodness of the human race after seeing Splendid’s example. Splendid accepts his teammate’s reassurance and encouragement, saying that although he can’t change the bad things that happened in the past, he can still move forward and change the future. Respawn mentioned that he had asked Griffith to look in on the Aegis files on the Banks family, saying that he had a sneaking suspicion Splendid did not have the resources to right all of his dad’s wrongs.
Spook shared her information on the museum heist and her mom’s involvement, warning the team to not let Dr. Phantasma “touch you with any goop.” After wondering how Respawn would react to the goop, the team tried to figure out what to do with America. Inkling proposed that Splendid get on the reality show too. After some back and forth within the team about the reasons to go or not go onto the show, Splendid wondered in what way he would appear on the show, perhaps to apologize on air? Inkling, all for this course of action, started to shove Splendid toward Fraidy Kat’s room. Just as Respawn tried to delay disturbing Fraidy Kat so they can think of how better to approach this, Fraidy Kat opened her door to the group in the hallway. Splendid explained that he wanted to be on the reality show, causing Fraidy to yell back into her room for the crew to “unpack everything, [because] we’re doing this now.” Inkling shot Splendid a thumbs up, which was matched by Cobalt’s, as he was ushered in to be made camera-ready. He decided to appear on the show out of costume, as Arthur Banks instead of Splendid, igniting more excitement from Fraidy Kat. Spook came over with a plate of Halloween cookie overstock, so Fraidy Kat asked her to stay to watch Splendid’s confession. Spook reiterated her desire to not be on camera or on the show. Fraidy Kat shrugged and said that a future episode would feature her parents, so she might change her mind about appearing on the show.
Arthur and Kat got seated on the couch in more casual clothes than their hero costumes. Arthur introduced himself to the cameras, at Kat’s prompt, as Arthur, Splendid, and son of Montgomery Banks. After elaborating on this, he said he had something to say to America, who was promptly ushered into the room and onto the couch. She was shocked to see him there, sitting in her couch seat uncomfortably. Arthur stood up and told her, “America, I am truly sorry. Sorry for what I did to you. I am sorry for what my father did in response. That I forgot about you. That all of this was swept under the rug. It’s true you were not given justice; I was insulated from consequences. I am truly sorry. You are a childhood friend I not only hurt, but forgot about. If you can ever forgive me, that would be most gracious.” He then talked about his visit with her mom and that he wants to do what he can for America. America said that she wants the whole world to know the kind of man Arthur’s father was, and asked Arthur’s help in bringing him down. Arthur said he wished he knew more about his father, but he was a very closed off man. When Arthur asked why America wanted vengeance rather than simple reparation, she said that Banks needed to be stopped or he would continue to get worse. In closing, America said, “I think I could forgive you someday, but not him. You made a mistake, he made a choice.” Afterward, Arthur did some solo footage of him rambling about his childhood. Inkling stepped up and asked him, “See, was that so hard?” To which he replied, “Yes, but I feel better.”
Spook pulled Fraidy Kat aside and told her she didn’t want Kat to go after Dr. Phantasma as it was still a really bad idea. Fraidy continued to say that she’s not afraid of Phantasma, and that she also had a better way to combat the villain: cameras. All she needed to know was the secret identities of Spook’s parents. Spook said it wasn’t her secret to tell, and declined to also provide her own civilian name. Fraidy shot back that Spook was going to protect them like she did the demon, to which Spook replied that the board of directors signed the contract of their own will and it was their fault for not reading through all of the paperwork.
Respawn then came by, confronting Kat for spending the last two days harboring and helping a criminal. He also turned to Inkling with the same accusation. Inkling peaced out of the situation in the face of Respawn’s insistence of her wrongdoing. Respawn continued to badger Kat about harboring America, accusing her of letting criminals and killers go. Spook and Cobalt also started to get fed up with the direction of the conversation and started to leave. Before Spook left, she asked Fraidy Kat to at the very least let her know if she was going to face her parents.
Inkling went off to hang out with her other friends. Cobalt went back to the penthouse to surf the internet and watch Youtube poops. Spook went to stake out one of her parent’s haunts. Splendid returned to the penthouse and contacted Aegis to inform them of Discard’s location after hearing Respawn’s outburst. Respawn, after insisting to stay to keep an eye on America, finally stepped out to the streets to call Griffith. Respawn asked for advice on what to do when there was a villain across the hall from the team and none of them wanted to do anything about it. Griffith suggested he find a better team, and reminded his younger brother that Aegis is still recruiting for their own hero team. Respawn declined, citing the recent event of Cosmic Jack — a member of the Aegis team — tearing a hole in reality. Griffith told him that he can’t control people, even if he disagreed with them, and he could either continue to hang out with them or not. Griffith also asked what made this situation different than the other times his team took action, causing Respawn to realize that wasn’t something he had ever asked.
Griffith confirmed that there would be an Aegis team on Discard in about 8 minutes anyway, as they had received two previous tips. Wishing to see the Aegis team descend on Fraidy Kat’s place, Respawn ran back up to the the building and scaled it by punching handholds into the eternal wall. When he reached Fraidy Kat’s balcony, he saw that the apartment within was an upturned mess, a battleground. Fraidy Kat vs. Discard raged inside, claws and spikes flying everywhere. Cobalt and Congo Jack emerged from their side of the hall from the ruckus, finding the door locked. Cobalt liquidated their hand to pick the lock. Respawn casually opened the balcony door, waved to the combatants and told them that there’s someone knocking at their door. Discard took advantage of the then-distracted Fraidy Kat, sending a plastic blade toward her gut, but Respawn intercepted the strike into his own body. Cobalt saw the pierced Respawn and got stuck in the keyhole, but prompted Jack forward. Jack shot an electric net over Discard, sending a shock through her body. She retaliated with plastic spikes, which Fraidy Kat intercepted with her body after vaulting over Respawn. Fraidy Kat revealed that she had already called Aegis, who are on their way. Discard felt betrayed, seeing those she trusted turn on her. Respawn, from his pierced position, convinced her to stand down and stop since she’s beaten and outnumbered. Fraidy Kat cuffed Discard, and told Respawn that the way she remembered these couple days was that she had been interrogating Discard for information before calling the proper authorities. Respawn spat blood in her face, saying that she’ll get hers one day. Cobalt, now free from the door, hugged and kissed Fraidy Kat in celebration, as Aegis boots descended to arrest Discard. Respawn apologized for his recent behavior to Jack and Cobalt, and introduced Cobalt to the concept of a handshake for such celebratory moments.
Spook sat at a table in the Raven’s Roost, a coffeehouse supposedly previously occupied by Edgar Allen Poe. Like clockwork, Dr. Lavenza entered the shop at her usual time. Clearly spotting Spook, Lavenza ordered her green tea, and sat down across the table from her daughter. They had a terse conversation where Dr. Lavenza checked on Spook’s well being, expressed her desire to protect her daughter, and revealed that she and her husband are working on a solution to stop Spook from dying again. Dr. Lavenza then offered Spook the stolen feather, with no strings attached. Spook, initially skeptical because there are always some strings, accepted and they planned to meet at this location the next night for the hand off. Dr. Lavenza then spoke about how she had been living with a death sentence ever since she graduated from college due to a rare genetic abnormality. She was disappointed that Spook wasn’t fighting back against her own countdown like her mother had. Dr. Lavenza then updated Spook on her father and how he kept recruiting new apprentices and sidekicks to fill the hole Spook’s death left in his heart. “What he needs is his daughter back.” she said, appealing to emotions. “I can’t go back to that life.” said Spook, tears in her eyes. “What would it take to get you back?” Spook opens her mouth as if to say something, but gets up and leaves.
Inkling finally noticed the 87 texts from her parents asking about her and when she was coming home. She replied that she’s safe and that they shouldn’t trust the Renaissance Man. Respawn sent a text to both Spook and Inkling telling them that Discard has been apprehended, and apologized for his earlier behavior. Spook ignored this text, wandering the city until the morning. Inkling replied, hoping Respawn asked America to turn herself in before using his fists. Respawn replies that he talked her down. Inkling got the recap on Discard’s arrest back at the penthouse and was miffed when she heard of how America was betrayed. She wanted to go visit America, so Respawn and Cobalt tagged along. At Aegis HQ, they stepped up to the receptionist’s desk and ask to see America. Cobalt and Respawn presented their Aegis issued IDs, granting them clearance. Respawn ended up telling the woman at the desk that Inkling was with him as she didn’t have an Aegis ID of her own. The piece of floor they were standing on rose and descended down hallways and ramps to the underground temporary holding area. Respawn asked Cobalt if they knew of any alien medical technology that may aid America with healing her body. Cobalt was pretty sure there was something, but needed to consult with their parents.
The cells they passed by had a clear panel facing the hallway so they were able to look within. In one of the cells there lay a siamese cat. They stopped in front of America’s cell and started speaking with her. America mentioned that she overheard Kat calling Aegis before the whole fight started. Inkling expressed regret that she didn’t have the chance to ask America to turn herself in before everything happened. After some more talk, America reassured the group that she was being treated ok by Aegis, but the cat was freaking her out. Cobalt then telepathically asked the cat why it was freaking out their friend. Once they connected with its mind, they saw their heart’s desire — them surrounded by many many friends as one big happy family. A voice purred in their mind, “Release me.” Cobalt explained what he just experienced and everyone decided it was a good idea to stay away from the cat. Respawn offered the possibility of the alien technology to America, and she agreed that it would be something she would like as she “didn’t want to live like this anymore.” Respawn leaves with the words “Justice will be served.” in reference to Monty Banks as the group leaves to rest for the night.
News reports in the morning had the following headlines and stories:
- Fraidy Kat apprehends Discard
- Entire board of directors of A-maze-ing Toys resign, effective immediately
- Keep listening because Fraidy Kat says she’s gonna blow this whole thing up!