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The Book of Ataniel

Enigma Archives (Sep. 1998 Part 2)

NOTE: Posts are listed in reverse chronological order,
and all posts are copyrighted to their respective author(s).

Title of Post: Flashback: Earler in the day
Author: S A Rudy
Characters: Gladiatrix, Kid Sidekick
Storyline: The Enigma Plague

Comments:
Jane delivered another punishing spin kick at the poor defenseless practice dummy that hadnt ever done anything to her. It wobbled. She sighed. Sparring with inanimate objects was never as satisfying as working with a life opponent. Shed been looking forward to scheduling some gym time with Kyria, but she wasnt sure that the Sunfighters hippie alter-ego would be up for it. She ran through a punch-kick-punch combination a few times. It was disappointing - except for her mom, Jane practically never got to spar with another woman even near her skill level. And shed bet that after several thousand years, Kyria wouldve picked up some cool tricks even her mom didnt know. Oh, well, maybe she could talk Rog or Warp into some live practice later.

Jane stretched out her shoulders. Shed woken up all stuff and achy that morning for some reason. I wonder if Im coming down with something... She walked over to her gym bag and poured out some of its clattering contents. Naah, couldnt be. I never get sick. Mustve just slept under a cold draft.

"Whatcha doin?"

Jane glanced over at Kid Sidekick, who was watching her from the door.

"Going through some of my alternate weapons. This team is so sword-heavy, I thought Id let some of my other gear see light of day." She tossed aside a morningstar and a few throwing knives and picked up a wicked-looking curved blade.

"Cool, is that a Bat'telh?"

"Yup." She put it back by the bag and selected a nasty-looking leather whip. It was a good weapon, but she rarely carried it. In combination with the leather outfit, she thought it made the look a little too dominatrix. She went out to the mat and started running through the practice routine.

"Hey, Gladiatrix, what does this one do..."

"Put that down, its not a toy!"




Title of Post: This is a Tricky Problem
Author: Jonah S Cohen
Characters: S-Guy
Storyline: Second Genesis

Comments:
"Actually, I just thought of some business," S-Guy spoke up. "There's the matter of... *achoo!*"

"Geshundeit."

"Thank you. There's those villains who robbed that art gallery and nearly blew up Marc! Oooh, I'd like to really pop them one for that!"

"I'm okay now," Marc assured him.

"Glad to here it, pal! But somehow, I get the feeling those evildoers will be trouble. Of course, there is one slight problem."

"That being?" Warp asked.

"How do you go about tracking down supervillains, anyway?" S-Guy turned to Aries. "You don't suppose they have a web site, do you?"




Title of Post: New Business?
Author: Douglass Barre
Characters: Warp, Phoebe
Storyline: Second Genesis

Comments:

"Well," Phoebe said, putting down her piece of corn-on-the-cob. "I've got some new business. We got this letter the other day from this guy, Drew Osterhaus, who wants us to induct his client onto the team."
"Who's his client?" Warp asked.
"Firebrand," Phoebe said, a trace of starstruck in her eye.
"Firebrand? Cool," Rog said. "I saved his butt from getting kacked by the Femme Fatales once," he exaggerated.
"I saw that on the news," Evelyn said. "At least he didn't ask for a password on their web page."
"Chill out, Evelyn," Maggie chided her partner. "It was a ruse, right, Rog?"
"Yup. A ruse."
"We're not going to stalk this guy until there's some misunderstanding and then we end up fighting, are we?" Energy Eri--uh, Foxfire asked.
Warp looked at his feet. "No, that would be, ah, silly... ha ha... it is to laugh."
"So, what do I tell him?" Phoebe asked.
"See if you can set up a meeting, maybe," Warp offered. "We could use someone who's getting as much good press as this guy. New blood and all."
"Used to be that we were the new blood," Marc whispered to Aries.
"He can have all my press," Aries responded.
"So, any other business?" Warp asked.





Title of Post: firebrand in the house!
Author: ed han
Characters: firebrand, drew, corona
Storyline: what exactly does "jiggy" mean, anyway?

Comments:

Setting: Downtown LA, outside of the branch offices of LucasArts Games
Situation: press conference, discussing the just announced FIREBRAND game

Dennis Carter beamed at the cameras from underneath his silvery costume as another little blue dot played across his field of vision. He was a little disoriented from all of the flash bulbs, but there was no way he was going to let a little thing like photographers ruin this moment.

Damn, he thought, all those years of dreaming and now, finally One of the reporters was asking him something.

Firebrand, does having your own game mean youve finally made it?

Dennis grinned, Heck, no; dont you have to be on the cover of People or something?

The reporter laughed, waving her advance copy (with his face smiling back), Didnt Drew tell you?

With mock touchiness, he demanded, Man, why am I always the last one?!

FIREBRAND!

All eyes turned skywards, and simultaneously, the sea of people shielded their eyes from the glowing form floating above.

FIREBRAND! WE GOT A SCORE TO SETTLE, SO GET YOUR BLACK ASS UP HERE!

Dennis groaned to himself, but not loudly enough to be heard by the microphones. Damn it, why does this always happen? I get a nice moment to myself, and some sorry-assed supervillain has to show up and ruin things. Man, at least the comic books got this part righthey, better give those guys at Homage a call

Carter yelled back, Corona! Im kind of in the middle of something, so why dont you give a brother a break, call my agent, and lets schedule this thing! Firebrand threw Drew to the side, hopped up and flamed on, putting on his best Im a goddamned superhero so dont mess with me face.

I DONT THINK SO. Corona dove at the podium Dennis and Drew were standing on

and straight into the podium, having missed both of them.

Firebrand hovered over the wreckage of the podium, drawing a bead on the supervillain. Hey, Corona: this is the difference between you and me. I make this look good.

Corona staggered to his feet a bit drunkenly.

Corona, tell you what: why dont we just do this some other time and I wont make you look like a horses ass?

***

Drew Osterhaus was having a fairly normal afternoon. 2:00 press conference to usher in his best (and only) clients new achievement (this time a computer game could roll into a series, possibly crossover deals with more merchandising possibilities), by 2:04, bad guy shows up, attempts to bust up everything. 2:05, situation well in hand thanks to Firebrand, and if everything runs according to schedule, by 2:18, TV & radio commercial breaks feature the footage of Firebrand, the big man, defeating a supervillain.

God, how I love the press, he thought.





Title of Post: Back In Business
Author: Douglass Barre
Characters: Warp, Enigma
Storyline: Second Genesis

Comments:

"Okay," Warp said to Phoebe, "here's the adjusted roster since Fred asked to go to reserve duty only."
The piece of steno pad paper contained the names of all the currently active Engimans, including Pulsar and Nova, who, after two adventures with the team, had finally accepted Rog's invitation to join the team full time.
"I'll adjust the system to reflect it, chief," Phobe grinned. "By the way, Huygens told me to tell you that he'd be earthbound around Christmas time. He said to have something cool for him to do."
"Great," Warp said. "He'll probably try to move back into the Nimitz. USAF'll love that."
"Anything else?" Phoebe asked.
"Nope," sighed Warp. "Unless you know a cure for past-life regression syndrome."
"I like her this way," Phoebe said, sticking her tongue out at Warp as she left his office.
Everything seemed to be in preparation for the weekly staff meeting, which, over the last two uneventful months had become more of a staff picnic.
"Maybe if I'm lucky, a meteorite'll crash into the island or something this week," Warp muttered. He stood, and headed out of his office, taking a brief moment to look at himself in the mirror on the back of the door. "Serious need for overhaul," he sighed.
Outside, he could see Rog and Maggie involved in a game of one-on-one. He couldn't see Erin, but the familiar glow was coming from somewhere across the plaza. Fallout flew in and landed on his shoulder.
"Picnic time?" he asked.
"Meeting time," Warp said.
"English has too many words for the same thing Warp," the dragon said, and flew off.
Warp sat down at the head of the not-a-picnic-table and waited for the rest of Enigma to gather.
It took about twenty minutes, but finally he and Jane had been able to get the team all seated at once.
"Thanks for coming," he said only half-sarcastically. "I know there's not been a lot for us to do, but it's always a good idea to get together to compare notes and have a chance to offer support in our own solo endeavors."
"I don't have solo endeavors," Aries offered.
"Anyway," Warp continued, "first things first..." He snapped his fingers and eleven white envelopes containing checks fell out of eleven blue-black portals. "Phoebe's reinvested us, so you might see an increase in this week's stipend," Warp offered. "and she wants to meet with everyone about a 401K plan, whatever that is."
"Can we, uh, transfer from our old 401Ks?" Marc asked.
"Oh, hell, I don't know," Warp said. "Ask Pheebs. Anyway, at this point, I wanted to open the floor to everyone to just sort of report in on anything of interest that's happened since we last talked. Old business, new business? Anyone?"





Title of Post: What I Did On Summer Vacation
Author: Laura Redish
Characters: Kyria Vesper
Storyline: The Enigma Plague

Comments:

May:

"Hello!" called Kyria cheerfully, taking her helmet off and shaking her loose dark hair out as she swung her left leg over the flying motorcycle. "Shadow didn't attack while I was gone or anything, did they?"

"Not yet," Warp smiled.

"I beat the crap out of a thug," offered Energy Erin. "I'm getting really good at this martial arts stuff."

"How was your trip?" said Warp.

"Oh, it was great." Kyria accepted an IBC from S-Guy, smoothing her fairly fluttered dress. She always came back from her monthly vacation to Ansalia feeling refreshed. "Kieran and I played Might and Magic VI for four days straight."

"You've been alive for thousands of years and you still think this is fun," said Manstalker.

Kyria shrugged and smiled.

June:

Kyria was sitting cross-legged on the floor with her eyes half-shut in concentration, playing what Roger had to admit was a pretty kick-ass rendition of "Stairway To Heaven" on her smoky blue Fender. "How could you possibly be the first Sunfighter?" Warp was trying to reason with her. "You--Led Zeppelin isn't going to exist for another three thousand years!"

"I'm a prophet," she said, simply, smiling up at him.





Title of Post: It Starts in a Bathroom
Author: Jonah S Cohen
Characters: Nemesis, Enigma
Storyline: The Enigma Plague (beginning the f-forward to June)

Comments:
Overload looked around Nemesis' makeshift HQ. "There's one thing this place needs."

"More toilet paper in the bathroom," Nightmare said, entering the room. Everyone stared at her. "Well, we do! We're almost out."

"OK, two things. The other one is some classier decor. This place screams plebian."

"And what would you suggest, fair lady?" Deathshrike asked.

"I know of a splendid little art gallery downtown that's having a showing by several very promising young talents."

"Fine," Pantheon said, "go rob it. Knock yourself out. Amy, you stay on the radio as backup, and, uh, take Stanley with you," she added, happy to get him out of her hair for awhile.

Overload and Flat Stanley easily cowed the meager guards and patrons of the gallery into submission. Stanley had confiscated their wallets and jewlery and they were in the process of checking out the classy artwork, when the supervillains got a call from trouble with a capital T.

"Hold it right there! It's clear that under that costume, in addition to a hot body, is a heart of evil!"

She turned her (indeed hot) body to see four members of Enigma. Gladiatrix stood on one side, Marc Reilly on another, the somewhat ludicrous figure of S-Guy in the center. Manstalker hovered above them.

Kaitlin Marsh's lips curled up over perfect teeth as she (unknowingly) her ex- high school lab partner. It was not a friendly smile. "Interestingly said. Look up, hero."

"Oh please! That's the oldest YAAHH!!!" With a quiet *pfft* Manstalker's jet pack shorted out and he crashed heavily to the ground, barely able to move under the weight of his armor. S-Guy barely dodged out of the way in time.

Gladiatrix took a swing at Flat Stanley, and was surprised as he slipped into two dimensions and she struck only air. "C'mon, partner!" S-Guy said to Marc. "Let's get this long-limbed lass of larceny! Uh, is something wrong?"

Marc Reilly was staring at his own hands in astonishment. His entire body was crackling with energy, glowing bright white. The glow got brighter, and brighter...

"Get down! He's gonna blow!" Gladiatrix grabbed the nearest civilan, dragging him to the floor and shielding him with her her armored body.

Then, Marc blew up.
****

"This one is, like, deep, man," Ninja said, holding the painting at arm's length. "It speaks to me. I see it as a metaphor for the failure of western moral paradigms, dude."

"I think you're holding it upside down."
****

Marc awoke to find Kyria Vesper knelling over him, healing magic flowing from her hands. He coughed, and sat up. "You okay, buddy?" S-Guy said. "That was pretty scary! Lucky I turned to stone."

"Anyone get the license plate on that woman in white?" Marc said, weakly.

"I have a feeling we shall --- *achoo!* --- meet again."

One week later...

S-Guy and Kid Sidekick were returning to Enigma Island. "Good thing we made this trip in time! We were almost out of toilet paper." As they mosied down the hallway, two dogs charged down the hallway at them, barking excitedly, tails wagging furiously.

"Whoah! Hey, hi there, fella," Kid Sidekick said happily, as the golden retriever licked his face.

"Hi, guys!" Kyria called out, as she stepped out of her room, waving. She was barefoot, her hair all over the place, wearing a long skirt and tie-dyed t-shirt, and seemed quite happy and excited. "Do you like my dogs? This is Penelope, and that's Portnoy!"

"Hi, Portnoy," S-Guy said, letting the airedale terrier sniff his hand. "Uh, they are housebroken, right, Kyria?"

"Who's Kyria?" She took out a guitar and started tuning it.

Kid Sidekick looked up and said: "This is going to be some kind of trouble, huh?"

"Most likely."


Go on to Enigma Archive 9



Sioux Indian houses * Native American woman clothing * Alabama Coushatta tribal tattoos * Arapahoe map

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Making peace pipes and other Native American fantasy art
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