Betsy Visits River City.
They were ready when a very masculine humanoid shape formed out of nothing. It was different again, smaller, but somehow more focused and still far larger than the heroes wanted. There was no sound or whoosh or any indication at all. It was just there and fighting. Despite their readiness, the monster swiped at The Block and caught him with its fist. He went down immediately. It was so fast, as if, the monster was swinging before it materialised. Flight Man immediately closed in and started punching with all his might. Normally he pulled his punches as he could cause all sorts of damage but not now. The monster was stopped before it could take a step. It looked at its tormentor and swung an arm at him at awesome speed, while at the same time Beamer let rip with his most powerful beam at its back. The monster roared and staggered but still managed to clip Flight Man who immediately went down and stayed there.
Beamer continued his Beam on the monster while bubbles floated up into its face and burst when they made contact. The monster didn’t like them, but they seemed to be just irritants. Bubble Girl had used her most potent acid to form those bubbles. She didn’t know what to do now.
By then The Block had recovered and started his next attack from a distance while those bubbles had, at least, distracted the thing. He was on target and struck it, full force in its stomach, or where a stomach would be on a human. The monster staggered back a few paces and roared. A bubble containing one portion of Faeryfaye’s potion appeared as if from nowhere and entered its mouth, but was immediately spat out. The monster managed to catch the temporarily immobile Block in its arms, for want of a better word. They immediately squeezed as it turned to face Beamer. The Block slipped from its arms in two halves, Faeryfaye’s potion balls fell unused to the ground.
Faeryfaye attacked with the broom’s arsenal, which bothered the monster. It turned from Beamer to concentrate on Faeryfaye and Beamer saw his chance and closed in to throw his potion into the monster’s mouth. But the monster was too fast and it closed its mouth when the move became obvious. Faeryfaye was out of its reach and had reverted to smaller spells to distract it from the remaining heroes.
Bubbles saw a chance and launched a bubble with her final potion ball inside only to see the monster slash at it and burst it. The potion fell sideways and just missed Billie who was on her radio trying to coordinate the attacks. Unfortunately she had no contact with Faeryfaye who was trying to entice it out, away from the castle into the open fields to the South.
Rectum had approached without anyone noticing and suddenly the monster was pelted with the sticky stuff. One actually hit and covered its eye, which bothered it, but the other hits had no effect.
Meanwhile Smooth had quietly flown to the monster’s back without being detected and was rising. When at its head a small, brightly coloured bubble flew quickly at its eyes again. The monster growled and tried to bat it away. When it growled, Smooth struck and threw his potion ball inside its mouth from short range.
The effect was dramatic. The monster’s eyes went wide and it choked. Its hands went towards its neck and it seemed to strangle itself. Faeryfaye took the opportunity to bombard it with spells until it fell, dramatically, onto its back. It was still, obviously, trying to retch when it disappeared.
Billie organised everything when they landed. Flight Man and The Block were dead and the others were exhausted. Faeryfaye reported that the monster would be back and Billie groaned. She called back to report the latest happenings and was told there was no chance of any reinforcements. She looked round and wondered what to do. Faeryfaye and Rectum were eating, obviously replenishing their supplies. Beamer and Smooth were lying on their backs and looked to be asleep, but Billie knew they would be up in an instant when it was necessary. Bubble Girl stood next to Billie in silence. There was nothing to say. They needed reinforcements and they didn’t have any.
Suddenly all their eyes were jerked towards the earthquake-like sound and vibration behind them. The castle, what was left of it, had spewed itself open again and two magnificent people walked out and looked around.
The man was massive and muscled with wide shoulders and a small tight hips. His black hair had a small comma that dangled down in a fetching manner. Fetching if you lived in the nineteen forties, that is. His eyes were deep blue and piercing. He was dressed in red, white and blue tight, but not skintight, clothing, that emphasised his musculature. But not his pants, which were the the old-fashioned pants of fairground strongmen and didn’t even indicate he had private parts.
The woman was also massive, but not as much as the man. She was clearly the tallest there apart from the man. Again, her eyes were piercing blue but, unlike the man, her hair was a striking blonde. Her outfit was similar in colouring to the man’s, but it wasn’t tight at all. It covered her in what someone in the past had obviously thought was an appropriate manner. Her long skirt reached down to her ankles and was loose enough for complete freedom of movement.
“Who are they, Billie?” asked Faeryfaye.
“I don’t believe it,” was the response. Billie paused before continuing. “They look like Fundamental and Fundamentelle. They disappeared decades ago. We never knew where they went. I never knew them but I’ve seen the records.” She locked eyes with Faeryfaye. “They represented the Truth and The American Way at a time when everything was Christian. They had no truck with anything unChristian. Especially not with witches. You’d better be very careful.”
“What do you mean? I’m not a witch.”
“Oh come on. You fly on a broom and you use spells.” Billie paused. “Look, I don’t care if you’re a witch or not, but you look like one to me. And that’ll be enough for them,” she jerked her head in the direction of the two new heroes.
Faeryfaye looked at them and her head went to her history books. Especially the ones that dealt with her own ancestors, who were witches.
“Flying on a broom is definitely not anything to do with witchcraft. It’s purely a Christian phenomena. As for the spells, they’re just straight magick, well, sometimes. Sometimes they’re just the knowing of the ingredients.” Faeryfaye then added, “But I do see what you mean. This could be tricky. What are their powers?”
Billie looked around, especially at the new heroes, who were inspecting the battlefield. She saw Betsy and Vicky and someone else plus a small giggle of bimbos slowly emerge from the ruined castle and look around. She looked for Pearl Girl but couldn’t see her. She worried about her. “Their powers are enormous. They both have similar powers, being cousins. They can fly and have strength beyond any of our present heroes, except, possibly, Omega Girl. They are both committed to the Christian way, and I mean all the way. Look at the way she’s dressed. That should indicate how far they go.”
She stopped when Betsy and Vicky and Sonia and the bimbos reached them. Billie stared at the blood soaked Betsy, but said nothing. Faeryfaye’s nose didn’t even twitch at the smell. Billie’s did.
Faeryfaye said to them all, “Are you OK?”
Vicky just nodded while watching Fundamental and his cousin hover over the grounds, taking it all in.
Betsy growled. “I need this fucking thing in me head taken out.”
Vicky said, “It’ll be OK for now. You said you’ve bypassed it and that’s the way it looks like to me. Why can’t you just remove it yourself?”
“I can, but it won’t be easy. It’s integrated itself to me brain and it’ll take too long to get rid of naturally. I want it out now.” Betsy was fixated on it. She didn’t like it.
“I’m Sonia. I’m with her,” she indicated Vicky. “And these bimbos are with Betsy. They’re free bimbos. Betsy freed them. They’v decided to work with us.” The bimbos giggled and curtsied. Billie nodded her thanks and smiled acknowledgement to the bimbos as the two new heroes floated over to them.
“Who are you harlot?” He was addressing Billie. “Why do you wear such provocative attire?”
Billie held her ground. “I’m Flapper Girl. Are you Fundamental?”
“Of course I am. Are you stupid? Is that why you wear such immoral clothes?” All the while Fundamentelle stood in one of those power poses with her arms folded while looking down her nose at them. She was a vision of haughtiness.
Billie held her temper, which could be extreme. Betsy and Vicky had never seen her angry like that, but they both, independently, had deduced she was capable of such extremes. “You haven’t been seen or heard of for decades. I only know you through our files. It was an obvious and correct question to ask.”
Fundamental ignored her and went on. “These three perverts freed us. The bimbos are not to blame for their attitude or attire and must be helped to regain their original forms. They all say there is a monster threatening the very fabric of space-time and the heroes of the League have been fighting it. Where is it?”
Billie seemed to be the spokesperson, so she continued, “It has disappeared. Again. Faeryfaye here says it will return. Our heroes are severely depleted. Can you help is fight it? And what’s this about space-time? That’s unknown to us.”
Fundamental looked squarely at Faeryfaye. Faeryfaye looked back, unafraid. Betsy quietly straightened and prepared herself to fight. Vicky noted all this and also prepared herself to fight. Fundamentelle saw these reactions and prepared herself to fight. She stared at the group while Fundamental stared at Faeryfaye.
“Your attire is not fundamentally offencive but the decorations on your garment are. Why do you wear those stars and moons? Do you not know they are the signs of the witch?”
“No they’re not,” Faeryfaye answered. “If you’re going to take offence at decorations, then arm yourself with knowledge. No witch ever wore such things.”
Fundamental was not assuaged. “Is that your broom yonder?” he pointed to Faeryfaye’s broom. “And did you not use it to fly?”
“Yes and yes,” Faeryfaye answered. Betsy tried a small, inoffensive, and, hopefully, undetectable, probe into Fundamentelle’s mind. It penetrated and she gave no indication of knowing it was there. Betsy nodded her head when she was certain Vicky would see it.
“You convict yourself,” said Fundamental.
“No I don’t,” answered Faeryfaye. “Again, arm yourself with knowledge before throwing accusations about. Even if they’re just accusations about witchcraft.”
“You fly on a broom and you’re NOT a witch? You lie girl.”
“I’m not lying. It was Christians who perverted the Witches rituals and pretended they fly on brooms in order to make the general population afraid of them. My group thought it a good idea and eventually learnt how to do that. But only after Christians made up the story to discredit witches.”
‘Oh Loki,’ thought Betsy. ‘Please don’t let her disclose what those witches rituals were.’
Fundamental started to anger. He was notoriously slow to anger, having the ability to see the good in everyone. Well, at least, that was the story. Billie thought this was going too far too quickly. She said, “Faeryfaye, do you know when the monster is returning?”
Faeryfaye looked at her and concentrated. “It’s reforming now,” she said. “My potion wasn’t enough. It’s already healed itself from that and wants to return. It wants to destroy every hero that exists.”
“Why does it want that?” shouted Billie. “What have we done to it?”
Faeryfaye pointed and they all looked. There were visual distortions starting. It was difficult to see them, but once the eye locked on, they were impossible to miss.
Faeryfaye looked at Fundamental and at Fundamentelle. “This is our last chance. We’re going to fight that thing. Are you?”
Fundamental looked daggers at Faeryfaye but nodded.
“And you, Fundamentelle?” Faeryfaye asked of her.
“She is a good Christian and will follow my lead,” answered Fundamental.
“She needs to speak for herself,” said Faeryfaye, getting angry.
‘Calm down Faeryfaye,’ thought Betsy. ‘You’ve done great so far. Don’t mess up now.’
Fundamentelle looked angrily at Faeryfaye. “Fundamental speaks for me,” she answered.
Betsy looked at Vicky. “Can you get into that monster’s head?”
“Hey Faeryfaye,” shouted Betsy at Faeryfaye’s back as she was walking to her broom. She turned around. “You’ve been up close. Can you get into its head?”
“No,” answered Faeryfaye. “There’s nothing there. It’s not alive.”
Betsy whitened, but not to the extent of attracting Goths. Then her eyes widened as she saw the edge of the woods. Faeryfaye saw this and turned.
“Betsy, can you intercede?”
“Aye,” she answered, reverting to normal vocabulary in the heat of the moment. Betsy started walking towards the elves. Vicky went with her after telling Sonia not to come. Billie looked on and wondered what they were doing, but left them alone. She saw Betsy and Vicky walk a few paces then stop. They paused and then returned.
“What’s happening?” asked Billie.
Vicky answered as Betsy was uncharacteristically silent. “The elves told us not to interfere,” she said. “We can’t do anything but watch, like you,” she went on. Billie waited and Vicky added, “There’s no mind behind that thing. We,” she included Betsy in this ‘we’, “can’t attack it. There’s no mind to attack. We, just have to watch and hope.”
Billie asked them to go with her. She took them to the supply dump the helicopter had left. “We had these made,” she said, pulling out five brooms of the same sort as Faeryfayes, that is, a shank with some twigs tied on at one end. “We don’t know how Faeryfaye’s works, but we hope you can use these.”
“Nice thought,” answered Betsy, “They’re not charged and I can’t do that and the shank’s not smooth enough. We don’t want spelks. It takes a lot of energy to charge one and it’ll take me years, full time, working on me own. And, just so’s you know, that one,” she indicated the one Faeryfaye was using, “isn’t Faeryfaye’s. Hers is in the garage because its a danger to her and to everyone around. It’ll take serious cash to get it fixed, but that’s still far cheaper than getting a new one. You’ve no idea how much effort it’ll take just getting a group together to commit to it. The fact they’ll all want it for themselves is the first obstacle.” Betsy stopped there, just as Vicky and Billie were getting seriously interested.
Suddenly, without warning, the monster was back, looking more menacing than before. It was smaller though, but looked more real as a result. Everyone noted it was even more obviously masculine but nobody said anything about that. Both Betsy and Vicky tested its mind, despite Faeryfaye’s report, and they both verified her analysis. There was nothing they could do.
Billie looked at Betsy and Vicky in despair. She saw Vicky’s eyes widen as she pulled Betsy round to look at the remains of the castle. Betsy stared then looked at Vicky. Without a word being said, they both ran towards the castle, followed by Sonia, towards the new entrance Fundamental had made.
The bimbos conferred amongst themselves in their own unique fashion and decided to stay where they were.
Billie’s headache suddenly became more severe and she took more of those pills she had for it.