Chapter 1: Hired Dude
It was a dark and stormy night in Northern California, something not very strange, as it was pretty north from the famed "Sunny So-Cal". Rolling on the 101 heading towards Oregon, was a black Rolls Royce dashing by, driven by a dark haired man wearing a green business suit and smoking on a pipe. With him, there was a blonde slightly wrinkled man with a combover in a black suit with a fedora. Behind them, there was a young grain haired girl in a similarly green spandex suit with her arms secured to her back with an armbinder top that covered her small breasts, her face under a black mask featureless that had only two white lenses for her eyes and her feet were trapped in ballet boots without heels. She was trying to get free, using her feet to reach her face, but unable to pull her mask off. Her screams were strongly muffled by the mask. The blond man sighs. "Seriously, Jackson, why do we even bother? You know her friends will follow us and all that. And even if they don't, there are those SHD agents and shit."
The smoking man, Jackson, smirks. "Worry not, McHale. I took the liberty to have all her friends busy by calling some... "acquaintances" of mine. By the time her friends get their act together, we will be very, very far." He smirks and looks at their prey, who seems to be trying to fidget with her arms, like looking something. "Looking for this?" He holds out a blue ring with the shape of a ball gag, but it seems the "ball" is broken up. She sees it and shocks. "I took the liberty to defuse your little beacon. And I would not keep trying with those, the inner boning takes care of your enhanced flexibility AND your super strength. Hahaha!"
McHale looks at the now wildly struggling girl and sports a surprised smirk. "Well done, partner! These girls be somewhat tricky and I was really worried." The young girl was right now fighting like mad, pounding the bulletproof glass the best she could, but her feet were not making impact due to the boots. "Ha! Look at her kick! Not even her strength can save her now!" He pulled out his cellphone and made a quick dial. "Lady Storm? We got her." The maniacal laughter was loud. "Y-Y-Yes, ma'am, we have her well stashed and defenseless, just how you asked." He held the phone to a distance, as the screaming from the woman at the phone was very loud. 'Sometimes I wish I had hearing loss due to my age..."
The girl couldn't hear it well due to the bullet proof glass muffling the voices from the phone, but she saw McHale flinch from the noise. 'Thank God I can't hear her voice with this glass in the middle.'
She sighed, as she knew what was gonna happen once they arrived to wherever they had to. 'Well, with my beacon destroyed and my body locked down, no chance to get out. Just my luck...'
She took advantage of Lady Storm's gloating to try once more to dislodge her bonds while she thought about the mission that got her here...
"Swift Strika to HQ, Swift Strika to HQ. Do you copy?" The girl was sneaking into a boiler room after hearing a silent alarm, which for her it was not that silent, with her green unitard and soft green slippers, her green hair tied in a ponytail and her glowing green eyes helping her look in the darkness. She was talking to her hidden comm, but there was no response. She sighed. "Great, everybody's out. Means no back up for this..." She looked around for any sight of the stolen plants she was tasked to retrieve. She used her enhanced flexibility and strength to leap to the nearest boiler, glad the engines were all turned off that day. Her enhanced hearing helped her getting the noise of two people discussing, two men she knows very well.
"McHale, really, stop messing things up!" Jackson was berating his friend at the sound of something that seemed to had fall into the ground. "And you're supposed to be the 'experienced old guy'? Come on"
"You would also be this clumsy if you were suffering arthritis yourself, Jackson! Dandy life is hard on the guys my age!" Jackson sighed at his partner's quipping. "Well, what were you expecting? I'm on my 70's almost!"
Swift Strika was surprised to hear that part. 'Really, he is? Well conserved for his age, must say.'
She leaped to the pipes in the wall and crawled until she got above of them, ready to fall with all her might. They seemed to be tampering with a strange device on one of the boilers. 'That must be the injector device they stole from the laboratory. I won't let them poison the water of this city!'
She leaped from the wall ready to fall on them, when the machine suddenly expanded outwards then shrunk super fast, causing a loud "GONG!" to spread all over the place. "GAAAAAHHH!!" She lost her focus and fell on the arms of Jackson, feeling in her whole body the pressure of the sound waves.
"Seriously, Jackson, why do they send the noise intolerant to a boiler room?"
"Beats me, McHale, but lucky us." Jackson was keeping her in a tight grip, of which she seemed unable to escape.
"GAAAAHHH! DAMMIT!" Swift Strika tried to escape from his grip but her body is resounding hard and her strength and flexibility are both totally blocked. "W-W-What did you do to me?!"
McHale sighs. "Well, duh! It was a trap, genius, meant specifically for you."
Jackson manages to pin her down and pulls out the armbinder he's gonna put on her. "We have orders of taking you with us... again..." Jackson sighs. "Really, McHale, this is all we do now? Why can't we go back to the bank robberies? My wife keeps thinking I have intercourse with them." McHale looks dumbfounded to his partner. "Yes, I know she should know better, but you know how women are..."
McHale sighs as he takes her slippers off and puts on the heelless ballet boots on. "Tell me about it. My wife keeps insisting we 'practice my art' and have me try to 'break her will' and I'm too old for that shit. I still dunno why I married a 30 something to be honest."
"Because she's hot?" McHale was not amused and sighed in annoyance while his partner puts the mask on her and tests the lock function with the remote. "Well, it seems we're done." They stand up and admire their work. Swift Strika was now bound in the armbinder top, the ballet boots and the mask. She tried to scream, but it was so muffled it was barely audible, even for her. "Let's drag her to the car before she regains her powers." McHale carries her princess style while Jackson takes the machine off the boiler and packs it away. They place her in the back seat of their Rolls Royce and then climb in and roll off into the 101.
Back to present times, McHale kept listening at his "boss", her voice raising every now and then. "Yes, ma'am, we made a long turn and we shall be approaching the manor soon-" Another ear blowing order. "Uh-huh... uh-huh... yes, ma'am, sure we will." He hangs, pulls a remote and suddenly, the white lenses become black, which shocks the superheroine. Inside the mask, her sight just went dark.
"Boss wanted her blinded?" Jackson smirked, still with his pipe on his mouth.
McHale smirked back, waving the remote. "Gotta love technology, man. Now, let's just relax. We're too far from the town those other heroines and shit are, we can just kick back and rela-FLYING CAMARO!" McHale shocked when he saw by his window a black and yellow Camaro shooting right from the nearby wildlife center and flying over their own car, barely clearing the Rolls Royce's roof. Jackson saw this and was surprised. The girl in the back was confused, as she could not see what happened. But she could hear the police sirens in coming.
Jackson freaked out when several police and park ranger patrols began to circle them, even when it was obvious they were chasing the Camaro in front. "Shit, I hope they don't note our cargo." The girl was trying to kick on the doors to call the cops attention, hoping "tinted glass" plus "incessant pounding" would equal "unwilling cargo" in the officers minds. He was sure that, as they were slowly speeding behind the Camaro, he had a chance to try the nearest Exit and try another road. After a while, he noticed the "Exit 698" and tried to get a clearing to take it.
Jackson was really not happy with the "escort" they were enduring, as well as seeing how reckless the guy is. As they were approaching the exit and the cars were speeding up around them, McHale had wishes to ram the car into that Camaro. "Damn, I so wanna punch that guy! I'm happy it didn't hit us, but do you have any idea of how bad is this for my old heart? Stupi-GORILLA WITH A BAZOOKA!"
Jackson looked shocked at his partner by a split second before he followed his sight. There it was, the black and yellow Camaro having drifted to the passenger seat facing the cops and them, where a t-shirt wearing gorilla was aiming at the cars behind them with a bazooka. "Damn, we must hurry!" He sped up towards the exit, but due to the rain, the speed he was going and the hairpin turn, he had little success in getting away, ending up flipping on the grass near to road, which the cops noticed for a second before the gorilla shot one of the patrols with the bazooka. The Camaro reversed the drift and now the driver was facing the cops. It was a young brown haired man wearing a Hawaiian shirt and sporting a goatee. He also had several grenades, which he tossed to the cars behind him, blowing some of them to smithereens.
The back doors of the wrecked Rolls Royce were now an easy hit for the blinded and secured girl, who managed to kick one of these doors off its hinges, as she painfully crawled from the vehicle. 'Damn! What was with this guys? Gorilla with a bazooka... stupid morons. Wish they had put me in the trunk instead...'
She manged to get on her feet, a great feat given her feet forced to stand en pointe, ballerina style. Awkwardly, she tried to get away from her captors, which was hard due to her weighted footwear, when one of them used a hook to tangle one of her legs and tumble her, then drag her back. 'No, not again! Somebody help me!'
She struggled against the pulling, but it was too late, because as soon as she was within reach of the guys, she got her legs secured.
McHale was huffing at both the crash and the task of dragging the struggling girl back. "GAH! Could you help me, Jackson?!" He waited for an answer but he got none. "Jackson?" He left the girl in the floor. "Hey, Jackson, you okay?". He saw Jackson was fully covered in his own blood, as it seemed he got the worst part of the crash with the milestones on the curve. But he had no time to be shockedd, however, as he got hit in the head by something solid. He held his head in pain at this. "Hey, what give-?!
The girl felt the blast nearby as she was struggling to get freed from the rope holding her legs in a frogtie and got a bit dizzy from the whole noise. 'Damn noise! Why did I have to get a weakness to that?'
She suddenly felt her whole body heavy. 'Great, my super strength defused and now these things is too heavy for me. Just my luck...'
She then felt somebody lifting her up. 'Damn, here we go again'. She was now too weakened to struggle against the men and her legs were even worse than before. She was at their mercy now...
"Hey, Kiddo, check this freaky chick out!" The girl was surprised as the voice didn't match any of the voice from her captors. Soon, her mask began to short circuit due to the rain and the blast of the nearby explosion, which began to glitch out the lenses. After a while, the lenses became white again for a couple seconds, allowing her to see for a second. The guy in front of her was brown haired, messy and sporting a goatee. 'Who's this guy? Is he with Lady Storm? Is he the gorilla?'
The mask lenses became black again and suddenly a cringe worthy noise surged from it. It was like a super loud scream for her, which got her out cold.
She woke up in a strange smelling bed, holding her head from the whole deal. She still could feel dizzy, which meant her powers were still out. Her arms, feet and face were now out of her restraints, which was good for her. She also felt her hair curled instead of straight. She got shocked when she realized her wig had been taken of, revealing her short curled blond hair. 'OMG, my wig! I hope the guy doesn't know who I really am...' She looks around for a way out. The windows boarded and all that meant no exit without her powers. Luckily, she still had her agility, so may try the main door and pass by the guy. She was sure she could out run him and get help. 'Stupid kidnapper! He should had left me restrained. Now, let's get out an-!' She got shocked when a Silverback Gorilla wearing a large white T-Shirt that said "MY OTHER SHIRT IS A TUXEDO" opened the door and stared at her with an angry face. "Um... hi?"
The gorilla huffed under his breath and shouted at his human partner, who was right now combing the wig. He had jeans, a Hawaiian shirt and red sneakers, as well a messy brown hairdo and a black goatee, meaning he dyed either his head or his beard. "Oh, you're up!" He gave alast look at her wig and took it from the bust he was using to restyle it, giving it back to her. "You should try something more lifelike, that one's a bitch to comb."
The girl sighed and got her wig back on. "Says the guy with less style than a gorilla." The gorilla howls like laughing at this.
The man sighs. "Why do people always say the same... and shut up, Kiddo."
The girl raises an eyebrow. "Kiddo?"
"Yeah, that's his name." The gorilla turns around and shows the back. It has a black and white drawing of him 'smiling' with the legend "#APEKIDDO
" below. He then proceeds to smile like in the pic, unsettling the girl. "I'm Dude Johnson." He offered his hand for her to shake.
The girl was taken aback by the name. After all, who names his son "Dude"? But then again, he had a gorilla called "Kiddo". She decided the guy may not know her real name. "I'm Swift Strika, Damsel Operative" Dude and Kiddo were pretty shocked. She sighed. "D.A.M.S.E.L. Dynamic Action and Mega-Special Evolution League. I'm part of a team of super-"
"How many males do you have in your organization?" Dude seemed to go straight to the point.
Swift tried to offset the deal, least she get in a situation she can't get free from. Again. "Well... D.A.M.S.E.L. is an off-branch of R.E.S.C.U.E., the-."
"How many?" Dude's unamused face was pretty cold on her
"I..." stammered the heroine, clearing her throat. "D.A.M.S.E.L. was founded by Emerald Girl and Soul Woman in 197-"
"HOW MANY?" Dude's voice got very firm and loud and even Kiddo seemed to flinch from it
"None, okay?! Sheesh, can you try to go lower on your voice tone, please?" She felt like a massive headache incoming from the shout at earshot. "There's no male operatives in Damsel, okay? Happy?"
Dude crossed his arms at her. "How times per week you end up in situations like the one from prior? Or your mates, for that matter."
Swift Strika sighed. It was not gonna be good PR. "There's at least one operative captive at any given moment, members can be out of action for even months and some just get either depowered or enslaved or brainwashed even. We usually have beacons to trace, but-" She saw Kiddo holding her damaged beacon ring and groaned of tiredness. "As in the past, the government is not really willing to trust us with any advanced tech, probably because how most of us are easy target for certain villains. Like for example, I have super flexibility and strength, but I get depowered by strong sounds and the weaker I am, the more they hurt me. Right now, I still have the blasts from a grenade in my head, which is shutting down my power source. I need to get that out of my head. I could try and get back to the base, but I think I'm too far for-"
"I have an armed Camaro, lotsa gas and a reason to get out of this place ASAP. Kiddo and I should suffice to take you back there." She looked at him and the gorilla and sighed, nodding at him. He smiled and pulled her along, towards the garage where his car was resting. It was a 70's Camaro all pimped up into a race car with what seemed to be a pair of machine guns in the entrance. "Okay, which city?"
"Um... San Francis-GAAAAAAAAAHHH!!" The Camaro started in a blink and she got pushed aback by it's sheer power and speed. The roaring of the engine was giving a pretty powerful sound, making her pretty dizzy. "OMG... too strong... can't focus..." And quickly passes out.
She wakes up in a more familiar place: her dorm in the D.A.M.S.E.L. HQ. She sighed, as she tried to listen if her bones were still vibrating. Luckily, they were not, so her powers were back. She was in her D.A.M.S.E.L. pajamas and realized by looking at the clock she was gonna be late for college. She dashed and went to the bathroom, but it was occupied. She waited until it got open and she shocked when a robe-wearing Kiddo came out with a newspaper and huffed at her. "W-W-Wha..."
"Food's ready!" The voice belonged to Dude, who was readying the table for breakfast. Some girls and women were already in the table, others were arriving.
A red haired woman saw Swift Strika awaken and smiled. "Loretta, I'm so glad you made it." The woman made a cup of coffee glow and levitated it to her. "We were really worried we didn't got your beacon, but thank god this young man was there to help you AND us."
Swift Strika/Loretta was pulled of her shock by the coffee mug floating to her, which she held and took a sip from. "What do you mean with 'us'? And what is he doing here at all?"
The red haired woman stood up and signaled to both the kid and the gorilla. "After convincing the Raging Evolved Super Combat Universal Enterprise-" Dude groaned at the whole phrase. "AHEM! After convincing R.E.S.C.U.E. and the SHD about what our group does for the sake of San Francisco..." She sighed. "Which actually involved Mr. Johnson threatening to have Kiloshock being sat on and farted by Mr. Ape..." Everybody in the room winced at that, Dude and Kiddo just fist bumped each other. "Anyway, thing is, say hi to our new Damsel Retrievers: Mr. Dude Boy Johnson and Mr. Ape Kiddo."
Loretta was utterly shocked, which made her spit the coffee. "W-W-W-Retrievers?" She never expected to hear something like that. "You can't be serious, Ellie- I mean, Redlight, ma'am..."
The red head nodded. "I am, Loretta. As you know, we either had to trust in our fellow operatives and the SHD for support on our operations, but given our records, well... we recently lost Angel Sagitta and Galaxy Shot to a slave ring in Saudi Arabia and Storm Howl's beacon was destroyed last night." Loretta was shocked. "Hell. most of us would had fallen to our mission to save you had these young fellow not been around." Loretta was a bit surprised.
Dude scratched the back of his head. "Well, it was not all that planned and... let's say it was mostly an accident."
Loretta shook her head and took a sit. "I need to know. They saved my life, but they also endangered it and I still dunno if I can trust them." She stares at Dude. "Tell it all. How did you meet my mates?"
Jackson and McHale woke up in a warehouse, full of bandages all over. Jackson was groaning in deep pain. "GAAAAAAAAHH!! FUCKING GORILLA WITH BAZOOKA AND GRENADES AND SHIT!!!" The place was familiar to both. "Hey, are we-?"
"Yes, you sons of a gun, you are." They shocked to see a red haired girl in a full domme outfit wielding a black sword. She had her hair a bit singed and had endured some clothing damage. With her, there were several grunts in pain, a large cyclops robot with several damages and a fallen arm and a dark haired cat girl who was trapped in a kind of sstraitjacket dress, while a couple of damaged anthro panthers were struggling to get her out.
McHale looked at them and punched the ground. "Let me guess: A black and yellow Camaro just appeared and broke in with a T-Shirt gorilla and-" Suddenly a grunt comes in with a flash drive and sticks it in the computer. It shows official D.A.M.S.E.L. profiles, but instead of the regular ones they find something more unsettling: A man with a bad hair day, a goatee jeans and red shoes and a awkwardly smiling Silverback Gorilla with a T-Shirt that says "YES, I'M FUZZY. DO YOU HAVE ANY TROUBLE WITH THAT?" and a bazooka. Their titles are also strange: D.A.M.S.E.L. RETRIEVERS. Finally their names: Ape Kiddo and... "Dude... Boy... Johnson... GRAAAAAAAHHH!" He grabs the nearest Tommy and wrecks the hell out of that computer.
Jackson was taken aback by his partner's outburst. "Lady Inferno, I'm so sorry for his outburst and-" He was smacked by the woman in the face. "Okay what in the-?"
"You know those two blokes that ruined our planes, right?!" Lady Inferno was very angry. "Look what they did to my beloved Cyclopunisher!" The robot had troubles to getting started up. "Master Hail got a meltdown and won't be standing for a week and look what they did to Night Cat!" He points to the fulle enveloped cat girl whose eyes and hear were the only thing out of that straitjacket suit. "You better tell me what you know about those two RIGHT NOW!" She got set ablaze, but stopped wincing and clutching her chest. "GAAAAAHH! Stupid Grenade wielding man..."
Jackson sighed. "Sorry, but we know not more than you do and-" McHale punched the nearest computer, still in his rampage. "Um... partner-?"
"FUCK DAMMIT!! FIRST THE PARENTS AND THEN THE CHILD?! GRAAAAAAAA!!" McHale kept wrecking the place. "When I find you, I'll make you wish you haven't meet me-URK!!" He held his back in pain, his old age hitting back. Jackson was surprised, but Lady Inferno was shocked.
"No... you can't mean it!" She forgot her anger and got it replaced by a bit of terror. McHale just nods. "Nononononono he can't be their child! N-N-No way!"
McHale sighed. "I wish it wasn't true, but it is... He's the child of Lena and Harry... the Mystery Pair." Everybody got in shock, from grunts to other villains, except Jackson.
"You know, I think I need an update in all this, because I had been frozen until recently: Who are the Mystery Pair and what's so bad about this... this...?"
"Dude, my dear partner..." He looks at him with a honest and dark stare. "Just... Dude."