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[WoS Track 11] - Quota[Song Inspiration: Killing Strangers – Marilyn Manson]It was supposed to be easy.Just a routine traffic stop to close out the shift, and then a nice long three-day weekend…Spend some time with the fiancée…Watch some football with a couple close friends…Maybe fire up the grill one more time before it got too cold…Three whole days off.Just a routine traffic stop.It was supposed to be easy. Officer Maxwell was staked out between the north and southbound lanes of U.S. Route 27 near Decatur, facing north. It was dark – the middle of the night or early in the morning, depending on one’s perspective. All of his lights were off; a simple but effective speed trap for the hour. The night had been uneventful – quiet – and he was fine with that. Why get worked up before a long weekend? He was just finishing off the last off his lukewarm coffee when the red BMW M6 whizzed by, making him fumble his thermos. “Son of a bitch!” he shouted, shaking off the mess and switching his lights on. He peeled onto the road, the red and blue lights flashing, and gunned his Charger’s engine. ‘Another one for quota.’ He didn’t need to look at his radar to know the driver was exceeding the posted speed limit of sixty miles per hour. His foot pressed heavily on the gas. The speedometer quickly swung up to seventy, and then eighty, and then ninety, but the speeding car’s taillights were still getting smaller and smaller. It wasn’t until the needle passed one-ten that he started to catch up to the vehicle, which continued on its way without heed; not trying to speed up and get away, but not slowing down or pulling to the side either. ‘Is this guy for real?’ He turned his siren on, trying to make it clear that he was pulling the car over. No brake lights came on, but he did start to catch up to the car – they must’ve taken their foot off of the gas. He stayed close behind, in case the driver was thinking of taking off again. He hoped they wouldn’t; he really wasn’t looking for a high-speed chase so close to the end of a peaceful shift. ‘At least there’s no one else around.’ The road was dark and empty for miles ahead and behind; which wasn’t too odd, given the hour. There should’ve at least been some other cars, though. It was the littlest bit unnerving to be so alone. The M6’s brake lights finally came on and the vehicle was suddenly screeching to a halt. Office Maxwell stomped his own brake to the floor, jarring him forward. He turned his steering wheel hard to the right and swerved to the side of the road behind the speeder, who had slowed to a stop at last. “Fucking asshole,” he grumbled as he fought out of his seatbelt and grabbed his clipboard, wondering if he should try throwing in a reckless driving charge. He double-checked to make sure his dashcam was recording, pulled his face mask up to cover his mouth and nose, and stepped out of his car. Clicking on a flashlight, he approached the M6’s dark-tinted driver’s side window, which was still rolled up, and tapped twice on the glass with growing irritation. No response. He tapped again, a little louder. “Open up.” Nothing. Not a twitch, not a flinch, not a sharp intake of breath. The driver’s silhouette sat perfectly still, facing directly forward without moving at all. Officer Maxwell had had enough. Thump Thump Thump He pounded on the window with the butt of his flashlight, not caring if the glass cracked. “Hey, open up,” he demanded. The driver was blatantly ignoring him; if they didn’t comply, they were going to be facing more than a hefty speeding ticket and reckless driving. He shined his flashlight into the vehicle, hoping to get a look at the driver in case he needed to identify a fleeing suspect, but couldn’t make out much. His patience run out, the officer started to reach for his radio to call for backup; but just then, the driver’s head whipped around to face him. “Shit!” he shouted, jumping back and alarmed from the abrupt movement. The window finally started to creep down; the soft electric hum sounded loud in the silent highway. Officer Maxwell had to compose himself quickly, trying to appear as unperturbed as possible before approaching the car again and shining his flashlight inside. The dark glass was gone, but he still couldn’t make out any details about the driver’s face; it was completely covered behind a plain surgical mask and a pair of aviator sunglasses. The brim of their baseball cap was pulled low, and the hood of their gray hoodie was drawn up. Nothing about the attire seemed conducive to the driver’s visibility, especially the sunglasses at night. “You wanna tell me where the damn fire is, asshole?” he asked rhetorically, doing a poor job of hiding how flustered he was. The driver didn’t reply. They didn’t move. They just kept staring straight ahead. “Hey,” he prompted impatiently, waving his light a little. “Do you have any idea how fast you were going?” The driver didn’t reply. They didn’t move. They just kept staring straight ahead. “Take off those sunglasses! You were clocked doing almost double the posted speed limit! You failed to yield immediately when I was pulling you over, then executed a hard break on me that could’ve ended in a collision, and you’re wearing sunglasses while driving in the middle of the night! Between speeding, reckless driving, and failing to cooperate with a police office, I have every mind to pull your license” The driver didn’t reply. They didn’t move. They just kept staring straight ahead. “Get out of the car!” the policeman finally snapped, one hand reaching for the taser on his belt. “I’m not playing with you anymore! Get your hands where I can see them and get out of the car, right now!” That got a reaction. Ever so slowly, the driver began lifting their winter glove-covered hands; and when they were high enough, they took hold of either side of their started to lower it down, just as slowly, revealing an unkempt mop of walnut-colored hair. “Take off the sunglasses and get your hands back up!” the officer repeated, taser at the ready. With the same excruciating pace, the driver reached back up and took hold of their sunglasses with both gloved hands. “The fire… is here…” they said in a voice that was so low – so rasping and hollow – that the officer could hardly make out the words from behind their mask. “Say again?” he commanded, brandishing his flashlight once more. The driver pulled their sunglasses off, but their face remained obscured by the messy veil of their hair. They drew in a long, ragged breath before speaking again, as if raising their voice was going to be a great chore. “The fire,” they repeated in the same rasping and hollow voice, just a little bit louder, “…is right… here!” they suddenly bellowed, yanking the mask off. Their head lolled disjointedly from the motion, dropping the messy chestnut wig out of the window and revealing their true face at last. A skull. “YAAHHH!” Officer Maxwell recoiled in horror, dropping his flashlight and abandoned his taser to reach for his gun instead. Two pale blue flames burned in the empty eye sockets, illuminating the spectral visage. “What the fuck are you?” The driver tried to straighten up, but their skull-head immediately lolled to the other side, as if it were only loosely attached, never once breaking eye contact with terrified cop.“Stay where you are!” Officer Maxwell commanded, taking aim with clumsy and quivering hands. The skull driver’s jaw fell open and they drew in another deep breath, disrupting the previously still night with a powerful and violent wind that whistled loudly as it funneled down the plastic vacuum hose that was their throat. Officer Maxwell fought to resist, but the maelstrom was too strong. The pale blue light in the driver’s eye sockets grew eerily brighter the closer he got to the black hole of the skeletal maw. Resistance turned to struggling. He fired wildly, finding it hard to aim in the vortex, but every shot was followed by the metallic plink of his bullets hitting the car. The driver removed one of their winter gloves, revealing an equally skeletal hand that snagged Officer Maxwell by the lapel. The policeman tried to pull away, but he might as well have been fighting against a statue. Despite the lack of muscle or sinew, the driver’s grip was solid and unyielding. “Your fire is right here!” it roared again, its eyes burning bright enough to turn the black morning into midday. They blinded Officer Maxwell, but they didn’t burn him. Instead, he felt cold. Very cold Deathly cold. This wind was getting stronger. Officer Maxwell wasn’t even on the ground anymore; his gun clattered to the ground as he planted both of his hands and feet against the car’s door, but the vortex pulled him closer still to the dark, empty tubing in the driver’s mouth. The ribbed plastic seemed to stretch and expand, engulfing the officer in its darkness. He cried out, but the sound became an empty echo that traveled with him all the way down into the skeleton’s mason jar stomach. Full from its meal, the skeleton let go of Officer Maxwell’s soulless body, letting it drop limply to the ground next to its wig. It fixed its mask, rolled up its window, put its hat back on before taking off into again. A clipboard was sitting in the dark passenger seat, holding a sheet of paper with several dozen jagged tally marks in uneven rows. Reached over as it sped through night, the demon dragged the tip of its bony finger down the next empty space on the sheet. “Another one for quota,” it said through a belch.Just a routine soul collection.It was so very easy.
The Crusaders: Part 16Answers, Part 1Koda: "Stand back, everyone! Skylar, Luke.""HAH!""HRRRAAAAAGGGH!"CLANG!"Maddie, Cleo, Owen, with me."Koda, Cleo, Maddie, and Owen went into the cage and got all the trapped townspeople out."Are you okay, sir?""Follow us and we'll get you out safely.""Don't worry, we'll get you all out."Once they got all the townsfolk out, Maddie used her scepter to make the cage disappear."That's the last of them, dudes.""I can't believe they used that spider monster to bait us, and we fell for it like suckers. Hook, Line, and Sinker.""At the very least, we were fortunate that Luna here," Maddie gesturing to the purple bird on her shoulder "noticed the situation and reported it to us.""Yeah, but still, I hate being played like that.""We may have played into their hands this time, but next time, we'll be ready for them." Owen reassured and placed a hand on his shoulder."I've been meaning to ask, how do you get along so well with that bird?" Luke asked"When Koda and I first went to the hideout, Luna here guided us to it's location. Over time, i started to learn how to understand what she's saying.""You do spend a lot of time with Luna, Maddie. It's actually fitting for you." Cleo spoke"So what's our next move, leader?" Owen asked"For now, let's head back and figure out our next move."At the hideout..."That is unfortunate, young ones. But you managed to defeat that horrid beast before it did any more damage. That is the most important thing.""True." Koda agreed"What is it that they're trying to accomplish?" Cleo asked "We know from Maddie's diagram that they're placing these dark crystals in these spots. But for what purpose?""Yeah. How are those crystals of use if buried?" Luke added"Well they mean something to Viktor if he wants them buried underground. They must have some sort of function." Maddie speculated"Well, if we don't figure it out soon, who knows what will happen." Koda said"Right." Everyone agreed"Although, trying to figure it out now after everything that happened, won't do us any good. For now, let's head back into the city and call it a day."Everyone left the hideout and went their separate ways. Koda and Luke went back to Koda's house, Cleo and Maddie went to their homes, Owen went to the Pleasure Lounge to get a drink, and Skylar went to the gym to workout.As for Doug, he was at home but something had him a little restless. He couldn't stop replaying everything he saw earlier that day. Luke, Koda, and Skylar along with the others having powers and fighting a monster."What was all that about? Where did they get those powers?"His mind wouldn't rest until he got the answers he wanted.The next day...Skylar went to the Pleasure Lounge and ordered himself a drink. While he waited, someone caught his eye."Well, lookee here.""Here you are sir.""Thanks"He took his drink and made his way to a certain purple haired lioness sitting by herself at the table."Hey."She looked up when she saw him near her."Hey.""Mind if i join you?""Sure, I guess."Skylar then sat down on the opposite side of her and took a sip of his drink."I don't think I've seen you here before.""I'm a regular here. I come at a later time. less people so less noise. I prefer the peace and quiet it brings.""Really?""Really. Plus, there's also the occasional routine that tends to happens during the daytime..""What do you mean 'occasional routine'?""The flirting that guys tend to do, like you're doing right now." She said with a smug smile."You think that's what i'm doing?" Skylar tried to joke, but the girl wasn't fooled."It's what i KNOW you're doing, so you can cut the charm." She said and leaned in to whisper. "I've had a lot of guys try to hit on me, and while i do enjoy a good compliment, it takes more than words to win this girl's heart. Richer, smarter, and definitely better looking guys have tried, and didn't get anywhere with me.""Yeah, well, most guys aren't like me.""I've heard that before." She said, a little amused."Heh, you certainly would give guys a run for their money trying to woo you.""(chuckles) I've heard that too."While they were drinking and chatting, she noticed something about Skylar. He had a fancy looking necklace, unlike any she's ever seen. She then remembered back when she bumped into Owen at the music store.Flashback"D'oh!""Hey!""Sorry, dude. Didn't see you there."Owen turned and saw a lioness standing in front of him."Be more careful next time? The music is great, but you should make sure that nobody's coming your way.""Yeah, i know. Sorry about that.""Right."End of Flashback'He's wearing the same necklace that leopard back at the music store had. Different colors, but the design's the exact same. I've never seen that design in any jewelry store, though.'"May i ask you something?" She spoke"Hmm?""Where did you get that necklace from?""Huh? My necklace?""Yeah. The other day, i bumped into this leopard at a music store, and funny enough he had a fancy necklace around his neck. His was green, but the design of that necklace, it looks the exact same as yours." She said and pointed at his necklace.Skylar knew she was talking about Owen, but he couldn't talk about it because he promised to keep it a secret."Well, a friend of mine gave this to me as a gift. Where they got it, they said it was a secret." He said"A secret, huh?"(phone ringing)"Hello?" Skylar answered "Yeah...Right now?...If you say so.""Who was that?""My dad. Gotta run back home. For what it's worth, it was great chatting with you."Skylar finished up the last of his drink, and left the Pleasure Lounge. However, the lioness got up from her table, stepped out the building and watched him for a second."I don't know why, but i need to know."She followed Skylar while keeping her distance so that he didn't notice her. Meanwhile, Doug had been trying to find Koda, or Skylar, or Luke to talk to them."I need answers to what went down yesterday."He kept trying to call them, but nobody responded. He then noticed Koda heading down the street and stopped. Doug began walking to him, but saw a bus come and Koda hopped on."Taxi!"Doug asked him to follow the bus until Koda hopped off about half an hour later. Doug paid the taxi driver, and followed Koda as he leaving town. He saw him meet up with Skylar, Luke, Owen, Maddie, and Cleo. They walked into the woods and Doug followed them. Along the way, he noticed the purple haired lioness was following them and she noticed him."Who are you?" He said as he approached her."I'm Lucia. Who are you?""I'm Doug. What are you doing following Koda and the others?""I could ask you the same thing." Lucia said"I saw them the other day and when this crazy monster attacked the city, they fought against it.""There have been reports of these attacks and people with powers showing up. Some of them have been fighting with others.""Well, two of them are my friends and they tried to help the townspeople. I'm following them because i want answers to what i saw.""Same here. I noticed that they all have the exact same necklace design and i'm looking to get some answers too.""Let's follow them and see what happens."Doug and Lucia followed the group as they made their way to the Wanderer's Den, and when the group went in, Doug and Lucia got near the entrance. However, they heard a noise and when they looked, Koda and the others were gone."They're gone!" Doug spoke"How did they do that?"Doug and Lucia walked in and didn't see much of anything inside the cave. However, Lucia heard another noise coming from within the cave."You hear something?""Nothing."Lucia walked up to the wall and placed an ear against it."It sounds like it's coming from behind here.""Behind the wall?""Yeah.""Are you sure?" Doug said, a little doubtful"I'm not crazy. I know i heard a noise within the wall."Lucia examined the wall looking for some way to figure out what she heard and soon, her hand pushed something."Oh!""What? What is it?""Look at this. This spot is red for some reason and my hand, it pushed it into the wall."Doug looked at it and she was right."That's odd.""Yeah."Doug saw the other spot and he walked towards it.Doug: "Here's another spot." Lucia: "Try pushing it."He pressed the button and it caused a wall to lift up and reveal the passageway behind it."Whoa!" Lucia said"Where does this go?""Only one way to find out."Lucia walked in first and Doug followed behind her as the wall closed.
Ducktales: Let's Get Dangerous (Review): "When there's trouble, you call DW!" Just finished watching the Ducktales Darkwing Duck special episode Let's Get Dangerous and I got to say that it was pretty awesome. I won't go to deep into the plot and you shouldn't be ready what I've written next because it does contain spoilers. That being said. The main story is that Drake Mallard (former stunt actor for the Darkwing Duck movie, who now plays the real role of the caper crusader) is trying to start up his superhero gig in St Canard, only to find that theirs ironically zero crime. Plot goes on to set up Darkwing meet Gosayln Waddlemeyer who along with Launchpad work together to stop Taurus Buldba from opening an interdimensional rift machine from ripping all of reality apart. Introducing the original Darkwing villains QuackerJack, Liquidator, Megavolt and Dr Bushroot. One of the main things that interested me in this was that the rift machine (Ramrod) is a lot like the machine used in the Spiderverse movie. Opening different realities in time and space. Also the fact that Taurus himself is portrayed as a sort of Kingpin/Lex Luthor character. The other subplot involved Scoorge and his nephews finding out that Brad Buzzard one of the Buzzard Brothers is a member of F.O.W.L (Fiendish Organisation for World Larceny). Which will defiantly add more drama elements with the McDuck clan facing off against them in upcoming future episodes. Also confirmed, Launchpad will be working with Drake as his sidekick. Duckburg at day and St. Canard at night. This episode is probably my most favourite so far in the 3rd season and I hope that perhaps we can get a spin off show of Darkwing Duck someday. All and all, I give it five out of five stars...
Super Story Sneak Peek! For the past few months, I've garnered enough inspiration to write up a new story featuring the fabulous and funky duo, Jean-Luc & Joey!,After months- no, years of putting them off, its about time I gave these two a kick in the pants and gave them a brand new story (especially after previous attempts have either been fruitless or lost due to unforeseen matters).If you'd like to get a sneak peek and read the first 5 chapters of this official tale, then I have two options for you:Option #1: My PatreonYou can join my patreon and get access to the story right then and there as well as have the option for commissions and other neat goodies. I might even display finished comic strips or artwork there EARLY before they're displayed anywhere else! Link: https://www.patreon.com/posts/super-story-peek-43475696?utm_medium=clipboard_copy&utm_source=copy_to_clipboard&utm_campaign=postshare Option #2: My Ko-Fi Shop!Ko-Fi's the easiest place to support creators like me (without needing an account, just paypal), and you'll catch glimpses of sketches, works-in-progress, and posts that I don't make here on deviantART! Ko-Fi's also got a brand new shop feature for creators to sell products. So in a hare-brained moment, I thought it'd be a great idea to give you the option to buy yourself access to the sneak peek yourself. It's a "Pay What You Want" ordeal, but the minimum amount is always ONE DOLLAR. SHOP LINK: https://www.ko-fi.com/s/b09a6e010a Please Note: Access to both options cost only ONE DOLLAR. But you should only choose the one you are most comfortable with. Do no attempt to republish, forge, steal, or any action that could be considered illegal. But most importantly, don't forget to show your friends. Your support is what keeps me thriving, even in periods of serious drought. Thank you very much, and I hope to see you there! Sincerely yours,Mr. Toontastic,