After Marina and Pascal had finally managed to put out the fire, they immediately saw what had happened on the ground level. Acting quickly, they transported the men inside and used some of the shops’ healing items to cure their injuries.
Despite this being mostly fully healed, all six members felt horrible about what had happened. They were easily dispatched by one man. Sure, he was insanely powerful but he was still one man.
“Poor Mel…” Pascal frowned. “She must be terrified right now…”
“Yeah, being stuck with a ruthless psycho like him.” Samurai Bob frowned.
“I was too lenient with him.” Marina said, looking at her hand. “I should had gone for a headshot.”
Samurai Bob raised his head in shock. “Y-You don’t have to go THAT far!”
“Well, anyway, come on, we are all healed up for the most part right?” Pascal asked. “We have to go save Mel! I mean we ARE the All-Star Heroes.”
“I wonder about that.” The Wraith said.
Everyone looked at the Wraith when he said this.
“Huh? What does THAT mean?” Samurai Bob asked.
“Well, at least I actually thought that it was just me.” The Wraith said, crossing his arms. “But I was confused that we had all been chosen to the protectors of an entire WORLD after ONE act.”
“Yes, I admit that was rather strange too…” Samurai Bob noted.
“Well, here is what I was thinking. We may not actually the officially Elympios branch of the A.S.H.” The Wraith said.
Everyone looked shocked when they heard this.
“Wha… What are you saying?” Tetsuo asked.
“Yes, who else would be the official Elympios branch?” Samurai Bob added.
“I don’t know…” The Wraith said. “But that is what Cortez is trying to find out in the limited time he has with us “in charge”.”
Samurai Bob stepped back at this. “W-Wait, you are not saying that…”
The Wraith looked at Samurai Bob. “That’s right. We are put in charge of protecting this world just to calm everyone down until he could find a bunch of professionals to protect this world.”
Tetsuo’s pupils shrank when he heard this.
“That’s a lie!” Samurai Bob scolded, swinging his arm. “Admiral Cortez would never do something so underhanded!”
The Wraith merely cast his leader a strange look. “Never do something so underhanded? You only met him twice! And that was a holograph!”
“So he is the founder of the All-Star Heroes, thus the reason the universe is safe!” Samurai Bob retorted. “And I won’t stand to hear you slander such a great man!”
“Oh, if he is so great, why did he put US in charge because of ONE daring act!” The Wraith challenged.
“I…” Samurai Bob said.
“We are the decoy team, Samurai Bob.” The Wraith said, crossing his arms. “We are only here to give the world hope so that when Cortez finally DOES form a proper team, they would replace us in a flash.”
Everyone stared in Wraith after he had said his words. Tetsuo was the most thunderstruck when the theory. Was it all true? Was they really nothing but then a decoy to make sure that the people of Elympios could sleep at time.
He then looked down at his hands. He could still remember that horrible feeling that he had felt when fighting Barbatos. Despite all of his strength, he was absolutely helpless as he was easily dispatched by his enemy and could do nothing but let the person who they were supposed to be protecting get kidnapped. Was he really that weak? Was he nothing but then some kind of twisted warm-up act?
“Alright… I don’t want to admit it but I would be lying if I said that there isn’t logic in your words.” Samurai Bob said, looking down. “Being a part of the A.S.H. seems far too good to be true.”
The Wraith nodded his head.
“Though is it alright if I ask one question?”
The Wraith raised an eyebrow. “Depends but shoot.”
Everyone looked at Samurai Bob in surprise, only to see him with his eyes narrowed.
“C-Come again?” The Wraith asked in disbelief.
“It is just as I said. Who cares?”
The Wraith blinked twice in confusion. “Um, the last time I checked but most people don’t like being played as if they were going to be some grand hero but instead just going to be a decoy.”
“Even still, if Cortez DID do this to us, he did it to install hope into everyone.” Samurai Bob said, clenching his fist.
“...You have GOT to be kidding me.” The Wraith said in disbelief. “You are actually okay with becoming somebody’s opening act just to make a few people content?”
Samurai Bob paused for a moment. “One of the survivors of my home is a teenaged girl who had witnessed her friends die left and right. But I could make the atmosphere one where she could smile just like she did in Simsville, I could do so. She along with a few other people are counting on me to protect them and that is what I am going to do.”
Everyone looked in Samurai Bob with mixed reactions. Most of them were of course awe.
“Again, I don’t believe that Admiral Cortez would do something like that but if that is the case, I will accept my role of a decoy.” Samurai Bob said before looking to the side. “I… I guess want my friends to be able to live in peace…”
“Samurai Bob…” Tetsuo said, softly.
“Are you… Going to be this world’s Captain Superpop?”
“Tetsuo, you don’t know much how we are counting on you and the rest of the A.S.H.”
Tetsuo then narrowed his eyes.
“Yeah, that’s right! They are worried people everywhere!” Tetsuo piped up. “If we just quit, it would cause a lot of unneeded panic in the world!”
He then looked at the others.
“And besides, when I went to City Hall to help out with the fight, did I do it to be a part of the A.S.H.?” He asked. “NO! I did it to protect Trigleph! Did the rest of you fought just to be in the A.S.H.?”
“No, I did it to help!” Pascal said, clenching her fists.
“Breloom loom!” Panmusu agreed with narrowed eyes.
Marina crossed her arms. “I must admit, I didn’t wanted to live in a city that was run by someone who had power over the dark beings.”
The Wraith paused before sighing. “...And even I admit that I probably didn’t care less as long as I have some fun.”
Tetsuo actually ignored the Wraith’s comment. “Exactly! And instead of wasting our time here, we should be going after that creep and Mel!”
“Right. Mel saved my life and it is only fair that I should return the favor.” Samurai Bob said, narrowing his eyes.
“Wait though.” Marina said, holding up a hand. “I wouldn’t mind trying again but do we even KNOW where our enemy is headed.”
Samurai Bob paused in realization before putting his hand on his chin. “He said that he is going to kill Mel but Mel said herself that the armor that she is wearing could only taken off willingly by her.”
“So in other words, Barbatos is trying to find a way to do so.” Marina agreed.
Everyone then paused in thought for a moment, trying to find an answer to their riddle. Assuming Barbatos had average intelligence, how could he kill Mel knowing perfectly well that not even he could get passed her armor.
Suddenly, Pascal raised his head with a look of shock on her face.
“Uh-oh…” Pascal said in horror.
Everyone looked in her in confusion.
“What’s wrong? Do you think you found a weakness in Mel’s armor?” Pascal asked.
“Yeah and we may not have that much time!” The technician said before rushing off. “Come on! Hurry!”
Despite confused, everyone else nodded before following Pascal outside of the shop. Whenever Pascal was leading them, they could only hope that they were leading them to Barbatos and Mel. This time, they WILL save her.
It didn’t took long for the All-Star Heroes to find Barbatos. Or rather, it didn’t took them long to find his trail. There was a trail of destroyed cars and smashed walls making a filthy path. The others looked around as they continued to follow the strange set of bedcrumbs.
As they ran, Tetsuo looked around at all of the damage with his anger boiling up with each passing second. This man had shown no restraint and literally destroys anything that was in his way. He didn’t care how much he outmuscle him, he wasn’t going to let him get away with this.
Soon, the gang had made it to see a large crowd surrounding a particular building. Upon further inspection, they noticed that the entrance to said building was torn down as someone crashed into it. It was safe to say who was the culprit but they needed to be sure.
“Pardon us but could you let us through?” Samurai Bob asked.
The crowd quickly saw that it was the All-Star Heroes. Almost immediately, their eyes brightened up when they saw this.
“Oh, the A.S.H.! Thank goodness you are here!” One man said in relief. “Some blue-haired brute carried a Medieval knight on his shoulder and crashed into the gym!”
“That seems like the beginning of a joke…” The Wraith said, flatly.
“Don’t worry, we are here now!” Samurai Bob reassured.
“Yeah, just stay out of harm’s way!” Tetsuo nodded.
The crowd nodded before it made a path for the A.S.H. The team then wasted no time rushing up the stairs and making their way into the gym. There, they saw that the hallway was just as messed up making too easy to guess which way did he went.
“Is NOTHING sacred to that brute?” Tetsuo growled.
“Come on!” Samurai Bob urged.
The A.S.H. then made their way, following the trail of destruction. All Tetsuo could hope were that they were not too late to save Mel. Especially since she ended up saving THEIR lives and got taken because of it.
Suddenly, Pascal’s eyes lit up before pointing to a broken down door. “THERE! They’re in that room!”
“You sure?” Samurai Bob asked.
Pascal nodded her head. “Positive, boss! Come on!”
The others nodded before making their way through the doorway Pascal pointed at. They immediately got into their stances when they indeed saw Barbatos and Mel.
The axe-wielder in question had Mel by her neck with her struggling in vain to escape his grasp. However, what they noticed was that they was inside of an indoor swimming pool. Barbatos turned his head in surprise.
“Guys!” Mel said with hope brimming through her muffled voice.
Everyone quickly realized what Pascal was talking about. Barbatos had taken Mel to the pool to drop her in the deep end. Even if Mel was mostly invulnerable, she still needs to breathe so she could drown.
Marina immediately aimed her pistol at Barbatos. “It seems that you are smarter than you look…”
“And unfortunately, since you had actually decided to go against me again, I can’t say that feel the same way.” Barbatos said, darkly.
“Who are you? And why are you doing this!?” Tetsuo said, narrowing his eyes.
“I am Barbatos Goetia.” Barbatos scoffed. “And I am doing this because this woman annoyed me, she attacked me while cowering inside of this armor instead of using her own power and for that, I have to kill her.”
“Cowering inside of the armor instead of using her own power?” Samurai Bob asked. “Is THAT why you are destroying item and weapon stores?”
“Exactly! True fighters doesn’t uses stuff like healing items instead of their natural combat ability!” Barbatos said, narrowing his eyes. “These things are a menace to warriors to me so I take it upon myself to destroy them!”
Tetsuo narrowed his eyes. “And who the hell gives you the right to act like item shops shouldn’t exist!? You say that items are cheap but a lot of people who put in a lot of hard work keeping shop and you had crushed all of said hard work in just a few minutes?”
Barbatos scoffed. “Spare me. Save it for someone who cares. Going out of your way to protect something that nobody should care about. I am going to destroy every single item shop I see! The only reason I haven’t destroyed the last one is because I wanted to teach this woman a lesson!”
He then smirked.
“Now that you are here, I want to show you on how useless EVERYONE’S attempts are.”
With that, he threw down the armored Mel into the pool like a rag doll. Everyone looked shocked as the poor woman fell into the water like a stone.
“MEL!” Tetsuo yelled before rushing over to the pool.
Barbatos smirked as he got ready to slash Tetsuo in half while he was distracted.
However, Marina had other plans as she shot a bullet into Barbatos’ shoulder causing him to cry out in pain, giving Tetsuo enough time to dive straight into the pool to save Mel.
With Barbatos’ prisoner in the care of Tetsuo, everyone felt like that they had no reason to hold back. Especially after that disgrace of a defeat they had earlier. Marina was the first to take advantage of this while locking her pistol and firing.
One bullet to Barbatos’ other shoulder, followed by one to his leg and his other leg followed by a bullet to his arm and his other arm. Samurai Bob, Pascal and Panmusu all stared with wide eyes as Barbatos collapsed on his knees in pain.
“Goodness, Marina…” Samurai Bob said in pure horror.
“What?” The sniper said, casually. “I didn’t went for a headshot just like you instructed.
The Wraith on the other hand smirked. “Ooh, I am loving this woman!”
Despite having several bullets inside of his body, Barbatos merely growled before slamming his axe down on the ground, creating a tremor that took the A.S.H. by surprise and knocked them to the ground.
However, Marina quickly recovered and while still on the ground, she fired a bullet at Barbatos. However, the dark-skinned man quickly blocked it with his axe. Getting up to his feet as if he wasn’t shot at all, he rushed towards the group.
Pascal yelped before poking her shotstaff into the ground and yelling at the top of her lungs.
Suddenly, a large geyser had appeared in front of the charging Barbatos and struck him causing him to stagger back.
“Attack! Don’t give him a chance to even breathe!” Samurai Bob instructed.
With his command, he, Pascal, the Wraith and Panmusu had all rushed over to the stunned Barbatos. Samurai Bob tackled Barbatos by the legs, knocking the axe-wielder to the ground. The Wraith placed himself onto Barbatos’ chest to pin him to the ground. Pascal took it brought herself to try to stop Barbatos’ weapon’s hand. Finally, Panmusu pounced onto Barbatos and started to pummel his face in.
Marina looked on while aiming her pistol, just in case of the worst. However, things DO turned out for the worst as Barbatos had aggressively got up while throwing everyone else in random directions with the Wraith crashing into Marina, knocking her down.
Samurai Bob weakly got up after being flung into a wall. “Is there anyone who could beat this man?”
Meanwhile, Tetsuo had emerged from the water while carrying Mel in one hand. Acting quickly, he climbed himself and Mel out of the pool.
“Mel, are you okay?” Tetsuo asked, concerned while panting.
The young woman slowly sat up before removing her helmet to reveal a pale and terrified face.
“O-Oh, thank you…” She said in relief. “When I found out that brute was taking me to the pool, I saw my life flash before my eyes!”
“It is alright…” Tetsuo reassured. “All that matters is that you are safe.”
Tetsuo and Mel’s eyes widened before turning their heads. Barbatos had kicked the Wraith in the stomach, knocking him away. The rest of the A.S.H. were all down, struggling to stay conscious.
“Ha! Not like I expected anything else but this is exactly what happened the last time I had faced you!” Barbatos taunted, readying his axe.. “All you are doing is wasting your lives and more importantly, your lives!”
Tetsuo’s pupils shrank as Mel gasped putting her hands to her mouth. Tetsuo frantically looked around knowing that he may not reach his allies in time.
Then, his eyes had caught sight on a poolside chair. He stared at it for a moment before narrowing his eyes. Wasting no time, he rushed over to the chair and grabbed it, easily lifting it over his head. He then threw it across the pool where it crashed into Barbatos’ back. While all it did was make Barbatos stagger forward, it gave Tetsuo the opening he needed.
“Mel, stay out of harm’s way!” Tetsuo said, rushing around the pool to face Barbatos.
“R-Right.” Mel said before putting up her helmet in case she needed it. “Please! Be careful!”
Tetsuo nodded as Barbatos turned around to glare at the guilty party.
“You!” Barbatos growled before rushing towards Tetsuo in a blind rage while swinging his axe in a horizontal fashion. Tetsuo jumped over the attack and kicked Barbatos hard in the face. As Barbatos staggered back, Tetsuo landed on his feet and did an uppercut into his enemy stomach.
Despite having the wind knocked out of him, Barbatos still managed to raised his axe to block Tetsuo’s next punch. Tetsuo tried to make up for his mistake with a kick. However, Barbatos grabbed the leg before it could reach him and swung him right into a wall hard. Tetsuo groaned as he sat against the wall, holding his head.
His eyes then widened when he saw Barbatos charging at him before swinging his axe downwards. Acting quickly, he rolled to the side to avoid the attack and wrapped his arms around him from behind and did a hard reverse bearhug on him. Barbatos winced as Tetsuo tightened his grip, desperate not to let the axe-wielder escape.
Then, Barbatos pushed backwards off of the ground with his feet. Tetsuo wasn’t expecting the sudden shift in momentum and found himself falling on his back with the weight of Barbatos knocking the wind out of him.
Barbatos then sat up and turned around before pulling his axe back to swing it down on Tetsuo. However, the bearded man snapped out of his daze in time to see the weapon. His eyes bugged out before he launched his palms into Barbatos’ chest as quickly as he could, sending his enemy flying backwards and skidding on his back.
The two strongmen got back up to their feet while glaring into each other’s eyes. Then, Barbatos had let out a loud yell before charging at Tetsuo shoulder-first. The brown-haired man merely narrowed his eyes before raising his arms to catch the attack.
While his action was a success, he still found himself skidding on his feet with Barbatos barely losing any speed. Despite this, Tetsuo gritted his teeth and stood his ground. Soon, Barbatos actually slowed down. Finally, Tetsuo picked Barbatos and held his over his head before slamming his down on the ground. Tetsuo then let himself fall to the ground while slamming his elbow into Barbatos’ back hard.
As the two fought, everyone else looked on from the sidelines. Panmusu couldn’t stand watching Tetsuo fight alone so he tried to get up while holding his arm. However, he quickly fell back down.
“Panmusu, no! You are too injured to fight!” Samurai Bob scolded.
“But we can’t just leave Tetsuo all by himself!” Pascal said before frantically looking around. “Marina, can’t you do something?”
The sniper shook her head. “I am too hurt to aim properly. If it is just Barbatos, this wouldn’t be THAT much of a handicap… But one wrong move…”
Pascal’s eyes widened before looking at Tetsuo in concern.
Tetsuo cried out in pain after being thrown in the wall hard. He groaned before looking up. He then gaped when he saw Barbatos rushing towards him. Acting quickly, he ducked underneath his axe. However, Barbatos made up for his mistake by grabbing Tetsuo by the neck.
He then started to engulf Tetsuo in dark energy. Tetsuo cried out in pain as he struggle in vain to escape Barbatos’ grasp. Soon, Barbatos stopped the attack before slamming Tetsuo into the ground before doing a couple of electrified stomps on his back before kicking him to the side, knocking him away.
Barbatos watched with a bored look as Tetsuo struggled to get back up to his feet.
“You are all nothing more than flies to be crushed by my axe!” Barbatos taunted.
“N-No… We would never fall to you… We are the All-Star Heroes and we don’t back down to ANYONE.” Tetsuo said, trying to get into a fighting stance.
Barbatos merely scoffed. “Well, that is your biggest and last mistake. And after you kill you people, then I WOULD be this world’s A.S.H.!”
Suddenly, the entire pool had went straight up by Barbatos’ loud claim. The only sign of noise of that the sounds of drips coming from Tetsuo and Mel after being in the pool.
Finally, Tetsuo slowly broke the silence. “W-What?”
“You heard me! When I killed you, this world will recognise me as its hero!” Barbatos grinned.
“I-I-I…” Samurai Bob said before narrowing his eyes. “I can’t believe you just said something so ridiculous!”
Barbatos raised an eyebrow. “Ridiculous?”
“Yes! Just because you had killed us, doesn’t mean this world would call YOU an All-Star Hero!” Samurai Bob scolded.
“Excuse me? Aren’t the All-Star Heroes supposed to protect THE ENTIRE WORLD?” Barbatos challenged.
Pascal blinked twice. “Y-Yeah… But…”
“Exactly! If I killed you guys, that would prove that I am a great hero!” Barbatos grinned before pumping his axe in the air. “Heroes do grand things and what is more grander than killing this world’s protectors would get inputted into history!”
Tetsuo’s pupils shrank when he heard this. So far, he had destroyed several buildings, vandalized stuff and was currently attempting to kill them. And yet, he thinks if he gets his way, he would be seen as a HERO?
While standing in shock, a voice echoed inside of his side which sent chills down his spine.
”I am a great man! Hahahahahaha!”
Then, Tetsuo slowly narrowed his eyes as he started to breathe in and out heavily. He could only feel like his entire vision was turning red but he didn’t cared.
“How deluded are you!?” Tetsuo roared, getting Barbatos’ attention. “Heroes don’t destroyed property and hurt people! Heroes help those in need and protect the things they hold precious!”
Barbatos then let out a mirthless laugh. “Please! Power is everything! And even if your ridicuously ideal logic is true, I am STILL a better hero than you because at least I have the strength to protect anyone period!”
That was the last straw for Tetsuo. Letting out a loud roar, he ran towards Barbatos in a blind rage as the rest of the A.S.H. and Mel looked in horror. Barbatos merely smirked before raising his axe.
“Tetsuo, NO!” Samurai Bob yelled.
But it was too late. By the time Barbatos swung his axe down, it was too late for Tetsuo to get out of the way.
The A.S.H. and Mel all stared in shock as Tetsuo cried out in agony from Barbatos’ attacks. Red drops of blood quickly fell to the ground as Tetsuo gritted his teeth, trying his best to fight tears of pain.
Even Barbatos stood absolutely stunned by what he was seeing before.
Tetsuo had actually caught Barbatos’ axe with his HAND. He had actually managed to stop the bladed attack without his hand being cut off.
“H-How is that even possible!?” Barbatos asked, not believing that his attack were stopped in such a way.
Tetsuo pulled his fist back. “You are NO hero.”
With that, he launched his fist into Barbatos’ chin as hard as he could, sending the blue-haired man flying up into the air before landing hard on the ground where he skidded a few feet before coming to a stop. Everyone looked on, still looking in awe. After a few moments had passed, they noticed that Barbatos was not moving. He was out cold.
Tetsuo glared down at the unconscious man in pure hatred. He then held his hand in an attempt to stop the bleeding.
Finally, the Wraith broke out of his daze before slowly getting up. “Tetsuo…”
The strongman looked at his fellow giant. “Yes?”
“Stay right there.” The Wraith instructed.
While confused, Tetsuo didn’t say anything as the Wraith made his way over to the unconscious Barbatos. He then fished into his pocket and pulled out a few items.
“Um, what are you going to do?” Tetsuo asked.
“I am going to use a spell so that Sleeping Beauty here would be trapped him until we find a way to take him to prison.” The Wraith explained as he used chalk to draw a circle around Barbatos’ large frame. “For some reason, I strongly doubt that handcuffs would work.”
Tetsuo paused. “So what do you need ME for? I don’t know the first thing about magic.”
“Don’t worry, you will find out soon enough.” The Wraith reassured with a smirk. “All I ask is that you don’t let all of the blood from your hand pour out.”
Everyone watched as the Wraith continued to draw a circle around Barbatos. Then, Tetsuo heard metallic footsteps from behind him. Turning his head, he saw Mel walking over with her helmet off.
“T-Tetsuo…” Mel said.
“Mel, I am sorry that we couldn’t do anything about the roof and the window.” Tetsuo apologized. “I am also sorry that you had to get captured.”
“N-No… It’s fine.” Mel reassured. “J-Just thank you.”
Despite his injury, Tetsuo smiled. “It’s fine, Mel.”
Cortez gaped in shock as he watched the All-Star Heroes, save for Tetsuo, completely covered with bruises with their hair messed up and their clothes torn. While this wasn’t a surprise to see one of his teams injured when he was talking to through holographic channels, that still didn’t made him any less concerned.
“Oh my goodness! What happened to you guys?” Cortez gasped.
“Well, remember when you said that we will face foes even more dangerous than Morcubus?” Samurai Bob asked, sheepishly. “It is safe to say that you weren’t exaggerating.”
Cortez paused. He then noticed that they were one short. “Um, where’s Tetsuo?”
“In the hospital.” Samurai Bob explained.
Cortez’s red eyes widened. “You mean the vandal was more stronger than we thought!?”
“Definitely. Not only did he possessed great physical strength but he had special powers and little remorse for whatever or whoever gets in his way.” Marina explained.
Cortez’s face fell. “Ah, I see… So what happened to him?”
Samurai Bob then smiled. “Don’t worry, the vandal, Barbatos Goetia is currently being transported to prison.”
Cortez’s eyes bugged out at this. “Barbatos Goetia!? You not only came up against Barbatos Goetia but apprehended him!?”
The A.S.H. looked surprised by this.
“Y-Yes… You heard of him before?” Samurai Bob asked.
“Yes, he is the self-proclaimed Killer of Heroes.” Cortez explained. “He had killed countless people, a lot of them being vigilantes. He had been a threat to whatever planet he was visiting at the time!”
“Oh my…” Samurai Bob said before narrowing his eyes. “Well, don’t worry. His days of killing heroes.
Cortez gave a relieved smile. “Well, that is pleased to hear. Though I have to ask. How were you able to hold them?”
“Wraith!” Pascal said, brightly as the zombie-like man in question rubbed his knuckle against his chest.
“Oh, really?” Cortez asked, raising an eyebrow.
“Yes. While we were stationed at the Power Stone Shop, I purchased from items from Mel.” The Wraith explained, proudly. “They were ingredients for a black magic spell that holds whoever’s traps in it in place no matter how strong they are.”
“Yeah, you should had seen Barbatos’ reaction when he saw what was binding him down!” Pascal grinned. “It was priceless!”
“However, it has its drawbacks. Said spells needs blood for them to work…” Samurai Bob said. “And if you want the spell to work efficiently, you need a lot of blood.”
The Wraith then grinned. “Don’t worry. Thanks to Tetsuo, getting a lot of blood was that hard.”
The others glared at the Wraith.
“Even if that is true, you didn’t had to say it while grinning.” Samurai Bob scolded.
“Speaking of Tetsuo, was his injuries that bad?” Cortez asked.
“Well, actually, it is just AN injury but it still warrants medical attention right away.” Samurai Bob said.
The Wraith raised an eyebrow. “Did it? Tetsuo was in pain for sure but he seemed fine otherwise.”
Samurai Bob narrowed his eyes. “I am NOT going to sit back and let somebody bleed, especially after they stopped Barbatos for us!”
“Well, anyway, I would like to apologize.” Cortez frowned. “Evil never sleeps but I would had never imagine that you would come across a dangerous threat so soon.”
Samurai Bob shook his head before giving a salute. “It is fine, sir. I knew what I was getting myself into when I joined this team. We all did. And even then, I want to stick to this team as long as there is evil.”
The others nodded their heads, though the Wraith rolled his eyes at Samurai Bob’s speech. Cortez gave a small smile.
“I am so glad to hear it.” Cortez said. “You know, I knew that you six have potential but I would had never realized that you would impress me this early.”
Samurai Bob scratched the back of his head while blushing, Pascal, Panmusu and the Wraith all grinned while Marina nodded her head.
“Anyway, send Tetsuo my regards.” Cortez smiled. “Rest up and keep up the good work, team. Cortez out.”
With that, the hologram had faded, leaving the team to talk with each other.
“I can’t believe it! We completed our first mission and it was taking down a powerful threat!” Pascal grinned.
“...Did we?” Marina asked.
Pascal’s grin vanished as she looked at Marina. “Huh? What do you mean?”
“When you really think about it, it was really Tetsuo who had defeated Barbatos. Not us as a team.” The dark-haired woman pointed out. “And even then, it was mainly because he was so stunned by Tetsuo catching his axe with his bare hand to defeat us.”
“Agreed. In the end, it was mere luck that the reason why we are here today.” The Wraith said.
Panmusu winced before looking down at the ground in sadness.
“T-That’s…” Pascal frowned.
“...Exactly why we have to improve ourselves!”
Everyone looked at Samurai Bob, who had a stern look on his face.
“Look, one may argue that our win was a fluke and maybe it was but we survived, didn’t we?” Samurai Bob asked. “I mean we are a bunch of ragtag people brought together with little to no time to interact and know each other! That gotta count for something.”
Marina paused before putting her hand on her chin in thought. “That’s not something to be proud of but I can’t argue with that logic. Especially since Barbatos had killed various vigilantes in the past.”
“Exactly! If we were able to defeat Morcubus AND Barbatos when we had little chemistry with each other, just think what we would do after a good amount of training in!” Samurai Bob grinned.
Panmusu’s eyes lit up and he hastily nodded his head.
Samurai Bob then looked at the Wraith. “...And fluke or not, we DID played a major part in taking down Barbatos. Seeing us as a mere decoy team would be disrespect of the highest level.”
The Wraith scratched the back of his head with an exasperated glare on his face. “Ugh, fine, I’ll admit it. Even if I still think we are just an opening act, we may be on our way to becoming the main event after today.”
“Exactly!” Samurai Bob nodded.
Pascal grinned before rushing over to Samurai Bob and wrapping her arms around him, startling him.
“Oh, Samurai Bob! I knew that you would be an awesome leader!” She smiled.
The green-clad man chuckled nervously. “Pascal, please. You give me FAR too much credit.”
”Besides, if it wasn’t for HIS words, I would be sulking along with the rest of you.”
“Come on, try it!”
“But you are hurt!”
“Hurt, not ill.”
“But you lost a lot of blood. You could be affected!”
“Are you for real?”
Tetsuo (now with a bandaged hand) looked in exasperation as he sat in a hospital, talking to a nurse. She was a young woman who actually looked like he was in her late teens with short blonde hair and a black eyepatch had had a winking eye on it.
YAKKO-CHAN/Pop’n Music/Konami/Nurse/Expert On Medicine/Super-Happy
“Aw, come on!” Yakko-chan whined. “Don’t be so stubborn.”
“You are the one being stubborn here…” Tetsuo said, flatly.
“Tetsuo, you had caught an axe with your HAND.” Yakko-chan reminded. “You mean to tell me that you don’t need medical attention?”
“No, it is not that.” The muscular man said. “It’s just…”
He then eyed the items that were inside of Yakko-chan’s hands. They were a giant pill and tablet.
“...I don’t see how pills will help me.” Tetsuo said, flatly.
“Of course, they will! They would give you energy!” Yakko-chan scolded.
“I don’t NEED any energy right now…” Tetsuo said, calmly while trying not to seem annoyed.
“But… But…” Yakko-chan sputtered.
“Yakko-chan, I appreciate the concern but I don’t need the… Additional help.” Tetsuo reassured.
“Honestly, Yakko-chan, are you pestering our patients AGAIN?”
Yakko-chan’s uncovered eye yelped as she and Tetsuo turned to the direction of the voice. They then saw another nurse. However, she was much older and her skin seemed a bit pale. She had long brown hair in a ponytail with her bangs covered her left eye.
SAN PAOLO YOKO/Pop’n Music/Konami/Nurse/Like To Go To Clubs In Her Way Time/Sexy And She Knows It
“Yoko!” Yakko-chan gasped before narrowing her eyes. “What a mean thing to say? Tetsuo isn’t just any other patient, he is our friend.”
“Even still, he doesn’t need TWO nurses looking after him.” Yoko said with half-open eyes. “Especially since they are other patients that need more medical attention than him.”
“Y-Yeah… But…” Yakko-chan frowned.
“Darling, do you want the head doctor to find out that you are not doing your regular rounds AGAIN?” Yoko asked.
Yakko-chan’s uncovered eye widened at this. “W-What? No! He scares me! I am going! I promise!”
With that, she rushed past Yoko and out of the room. Yoko smirked triumphantly before looking at Tetsuo.
“Sorry about her, darling. You know what she is like.” She said.
Tetsuo gave a small chuckle. “Y-Yeah, I know from too well.”
She then let out a deep sigh. “You know, Tetsuo. While she is overreacting, her concern is more than warranted.”
Tetsuo’s face fell before looking down.
Yoko continued on while narrowing her eyes. “Honestly, Tetsuo, what were you thinking when you caught that axe with your BARE HAND? I know that you are strong but from what I heard, so what that Barbatos creep?”
“Oh, he was…” Tetsuo muttered while gritting his teeth in anger at the memory of Barbatos.
“Then why did you do it?” Yoko asked. “It is amazing that you haven’t lost a hand!”
Tetsuo looked down at his bandaged hand. “I… I’m sorry. I lost my cool with that Barbatos and before I know it, I had to catch his axe so that I wouldn’t get killed.”
Yoko shook her head. “Tetsuo, darling, we had lost so many friends. Do you really think the people here would want to know that feeling all over again?”
Tetsuo slowly looked up. “Listen, I know that I was reckless but I can’t help it. That man. Barbatos. He reminded me of HIM.”
Yoko’s eyes widened when she heard this as Tetsuo continued.
“I just can’t do it. I just can’t let someone who tries to justifies their actions of hurting people get away like that.” Tetsuo said. “Especially since there are a lot of people counting on me. Rita even asked if the Elympios branch were going to be this world’s Captain Superpop.”
Yoko’s face fell as she weakly nodded her head. “Tetsuo…”
The tan-skinned man looked up. “That is why I have to risk my life. To protect this world. You can’t protect the things you love then having power of any kind is worthless.”
Yoko paused for a moment. She then sighed. “Fine, Tetsuo. Just promise me one thing.”
Tetsuo raised an eyebrow. “And that is.”
Yoko looked up with a stern glare.
“Don’t get yourself killed. No matter how exactly you killed, you would make a lot of people upset.” She said.
Tetsuo looked down in thought. He then raised his head and nodded his head. “Don’t worry. I promise not to get myself killed. I have far too much to do anyway.”
Yoko nodded her head before stepping over. “Anyway, could I check over your hand? I know your injury is not as severe as I initially thought but it is better to be safe than sorry.”
She then gave a smile.
“After all, it would be impossible to protect everyone with one hand, right?”
Tetsuo gave a small smile. “Sure, go ahead..."