THE RESURRECTION OF DESUTOROIA:
Hellspawn's Legacy
 
 
CHAPTER 5: Mount Rodan
 
 
 
Matthew Laurence and his fellow conspirators had made their way up the mountainside. 
"Bring me the tablet." The man who had mocked the guard back at the check point brought it. "Soon, we'll be the richest men on Earth in a world where everything for everyone is perfect!" In actuality, Laurence had every intention of killing his followers. He was just keeping them around to hold off the Mods when they got there and distract them so he could have everything he had ever dreamed of for himself. 
 
*****
 
The Garuda .5 flew toward its destination, which could clearly be seen although they were still far away. Boo squeaked in amazement at the mountain. Rado Goji was getting nervous as he needed to be brave at this point but not used to doing so (without getting in trouble). Minsc looked at the mountain in anticipation, eager to see what was there. 
"Only a couple of minutes until we reach Mt. Rodan," he announced. He saw Rado's nervousness. "What's on your mind, partner?" 
"I was just thinking about EDCOLE," Rado replied. "What they wanted us to stay out of, and why. Maybe this is it. Maybe we should check on Gamingboy." 
"There's no turning back now," said Minsc. "Just think, Rado. We could be heroes! Or better!" It got Rado to thinking. He saw Jet Jaguar's car below. If there was anything to do to get recognition, this was it. 
"You know, Minsc? I got to thinking. You were right all along. I've been a wuss all my life. Wusses don't get recognition. It is time to be brave, and, um, kick... evil... butt..." 
"THAT'S THE SPIRIT!!!" shouted a happy Minsc. "Rado has been awakened, Boo! The time has come to kick the hiney of evil ten-fold of our normal evil-hiney-kicking potential! Rado is a wuss no more and the RMB Mercenary Service is at full power!" Boo squeaked in delight. 
"Let's punch it!" said Rado as they sped toward the mountain. 
It wasn't long before a blip came on the radar and a large black terranodon like monster came into view. 
"Minsc, divert some engine power to the shields and prepare for evasive maneuvers! I don't know what this thing is but we should steer clear of it before it kicks OUR butts!" 
As Raptor, Sheriff Jaguar and Queen Ghidorah were plotting their course of action for tackling the rugged terrain of Mt. Rodan, a strange craft flew overhead and buzzed them. Raptor's first thought was to unload the Mossberg at the brash fly boy but the nimble craft dipped its wings in salute. 
"You think it's Kobayashi?" JJ asked. 
"No telling. Let's try to hail that thing." Unlike the Terror from Osaka, Minsc knew what a radio was for and relieved Boo of the mike, even if he himself sounded like an extra from SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT. The prospect of finally being able to talk to the Sheriff was sufficient encouragement for the RMB crew to circle around and land at the base of Mt. Rodan to join up with the four wheelers. Miyako Aso also picked up the transmissions and announced her and Obake's addition to the squad. 
"There's always room for another were-Goji or two, as the Geek himself would insist," Raptor grinned. 
"The more the merrier!" JJ rogered. "Let's meet up where the road ends and plan a course of ascent up this rock pile. What craft are you bringing?" 
"Oh, just a little something from the East River version of the Citagon," she advised. "It should prove handy for getting around these parts." 
"See if you can ID whatever else you're sharing airspace with. We just got strafed by two banzai buddies and a hamster." The Sheriff figured he could find something to keep the newcomers occupied if they proved to be more of a liability than an asset to the operation. 
"What we really need is communication with Ubergeek and the Count. We wouldn't want to risk friendly fire if it comes to that." 
"I'll see if I can raise him on the portable," Miyako advised. "Let's just hope he thought to pack it." 
"Roger, Air One. S.O. out." JJ broke off and set to scanning the mountain looming ahead of them. 
 
*****
 
 
Matthew Laurence was holding the tablet that he, Dr. Phish and Desutoroia had found on this very mountain. It explained, in an ancient language that only a select few (including Laurence) knew, the secret to entering the golden land of Utopia. But he wasn't satisfied. First he had to find the gateway. He spotted an old cave entrance. 
"Utopia is mine," he whispered. His men followed as he entered the cave and in fifteen minutes, they had reached the exit. Utopia's gateway was nearby. 
"This is it! Another mile and our heart's greatest desires will soon be filled with a sense of satisfaction." Little did Laurence realize that up above them on a cliff, Ubergeek and Super Jet Jaguar were lost and searching for a way off the mountain. Luckily for him, they didn't look down and see them. 

Chapter XXXIIII  
Mount Rodan, 12:27 AM:  
  

Having noted the Count's rather subdued demeanor, Ubergeek had wasted the better part of the morning leading them about in figure-eights, hoping Super JJ would reveal what was up with him before he had to ask the cyborg vampire outright. 
“Eh….just a bad trip. Indigestion. Too many Matango spores on that pizza we picked up in town.” The Geekspawn was having none of it. 
“Really? Then why aren't you sporting the Undead ‘Shroom-Man® look? Y’know, this is just how those miserable Stephen King/Wes Craven/Hack Horror Author of the Week™ stories start! Nobody ever blurts out their Unspeakable Secrets™ in time which, of course, just eats up any window for snipping the Great Evil® in the bud. And next thing you know-“ 
“ALL RIGHT! I’ll tell! Just make the rant stop!” shrieked SJJ. Ominously misty and dank as the surroundings were, said shriek attracted rather more of an audience than either Roostafarian might've liked. And thus was the Count's sordid tale of his nemesis, the Blue Devil™ revealed. 
An upper echelon Lord of Hell, this bloodthirsty beast, barred from the mortal plane since time forgotten, built up power with every death on the surface world around his former haunts (which, unfortunately, just happened to be the rural district of Roostville). With the recent campaigns of his over-zealous brother-in-torment, Hellspawn, El Diablo Azul® was only several innocent sacrifices short of the might to shatter the seals that bound him and wreak havoc upon the outer world anew. Uber goggled at these and other revelations. With such a nemesis, no wonder the Count acted so unhinged at times. 
Neither traveler was given much time to brood as the wind shifted, giving away our aforementioned audience. Nostrils flaring as enhanced olfactory nerves took in a familiar aroma, Count and Geek turned to see Goji Son and the TMC® but their greetings died as both took in the aura of blue-black energy crackling about GS. A feral snarl twisted around SJJ's rapidly-lengthening incisors, eliciting an unnaturally deep chuckle from the apparently possessed Mod™. 
"SO, YOU TWISTED LITTLE TURNCOAT! SEEKING HELP NOW THAT I STAND ON THE VERGE OF FREEDOM?" The undead warrior’s snarl actually rose in pitch. 
"Uh… did you know he could possess people?" Ubergeek, not really expecting a response, edged back several steps, spying the multitude of dark-robed figures quietly encircling them. 
A new voice, laced with smug knowledge, rang out from one Cultist™. “Not without a little help from us, gork. The Lord Hellspawn’s gonna return for you ALL and this time he felt like inviting an old friend-“ 
"IDIOT! WHAT HAVE I TOLD YOU ABOUT DISCUSSING OUR PLANS IN FRONT OF VICTIMS?!" 
"Eh… don’t?" The Cultist, reduced to a tremulous whimper, shrank back among his comrades which did him absolutely no good as a bolt of blood-red Death shot from Demo-Goji Son’s outstretched palm, literally splattering the wretch across any immediate scenery, not to mention several fellow Guys in Black. With a disgusted snort, the possessed movie producer turned back to Super JJ and Ubergeek, sneering at the former’s shudder as he fought an upwelling of bloodlust. 
"NOW, THEN… WHERE WAS I?" 
"You were just about to die by my claws, scum!" With that proclamation, the Count was flying at the Blue Devil’s host with taloned hands extended, only to be repelled by a blazing azure force field, then brutally thrown aside. Leaping up, SJJ took in his nemesis’ disgusted sneer, uttered an ear-splitting roar and dove in again. The combatants became a nigh illegible blur of claws, fists, kicks and Flashy Eldritch Bolts™, leaving Ubergeek to glumly survey the assembled Todd McFarlane Cultists® as they closed about him, reverting to their true shapes. Robes and flesh tore, horns sprouted, newly compound eyes glowed various shades of red; freshly fanged jaws hyperextended, limbs popped and snapped as muscle and bone expanded. When the metamorphoses were finished, twenty of what resembled Violator’s inbred second cousins bared infernal dental arrays in hideous slobbering rictuses, promising carnage by the Double-Hefty-Bag™. For good measure, some forty Walking Skeletons®, drawn to the spot by El Diablo Azure’s command, erupted from the ground at the transformed Cultists’ feet. The Geek groaned. 
"Say, Jaggy… Don’t suppose you have a spare Red Button© I could borrow?" No intelligible response was forthcoming as the Count and his possessed foe continued to trade bone-crushing, landscape-reformatting blows somewhere behind him. 
“Never mind.” 

  

One Spinning Rodan Signal© later, we rejoin the Count and Geek at Mount Rodan: 1:17 AM:  
  

Super Jet Jaguar had furiously unloaded every weapon in his vast and improbable arsenal upon the unfortunate who housed his greatest nemesis. In return, the Blue Devil had deftly countered each energy blast, supercharged blow or projectile with improbable evasive moves; his host's own lesser but still-formidable arsenal and a seemingly unquenchable font of dark might, never losing the contemptuous leer. 
Not far away, a fully transformed and currently T.rex proportioned Ubergeek was faring slightly better. His foes’ early ‘dog pile’ tactic had backfired in a rather ugly fashion as the were-Goji elected to bear hug one Cultist-Demon, snatch up another in his jaws, roll over still another five, then blast the remainder off with an Atomic Pulse he’d been charging up during the prior moves.  he undead ranks, creepy and EC-esque as they were, proved of little use against prey sporting Uber's mass and speed. From there, a combination of constant motion, judicious heat beamery and his regenerative mojo prevented the McFarlaneites from surrounding and savaging the Geekspawn, though their near-constant slashing assaults were fraying his nerves. Shaking one especially stubborn demon off his head and sustaining a nasty if superficial set of muzzle lacerations in the process, Uber unleashed yet another atomic ray, then spun, sweeping the red-gold lance of death about him in a circular pattern, intended to buy him a second for Situation Analysis®. The Cultist-Demons promptly obliged, scrambling back as the volcanic rock at their feet was scattered in glowing chunks. 
That accomplished, the Geekspawn hazarded a look at how Super JJ was faring with his dance partner.  Relieved to observe the cyber-vamp holding his own, Uber feigned a moment of weakness, staggering in a slow, painful looking circle, narrowed eyes and heat sensing pits sorting out the remaining dozen Demo-Cultists who didn't seem to be taking the bait but were instead warily spreading out to his right and left, perhaps preparing a flanking attack. Upping the ante with an exaggerated left limp, the were-Goji managed to sucker in four D-Cs. A vicious tail swipe caught one midway through a leap at his haunches; the second and third were caught underfoot as 7.5 tons of saurian sprang to meet them and crushed into submission. Number four barely ducked a sweeping right hook. Newly incensed, the remaining eight Demo-Cultists bored in from several directions at once, seeking to ravage their temporarily distracted target with a final mass assault and smashing Super JJ to the hardened lava that served as their battleground. The possessed Goji Son followed up with a wave of blue-black power which tore rock apart as it forced the Count up and over the rim of Mt. Rodan's crater. Sliding towards the volcano's hellish depths for a good ninety meters, SJJ clawed his way to a stop then froze, transfixed by a primordial fear as he felt the mountain tremble. 
The Black Rodan™®© erupted from its lair, a terrible blur of motion as it zoomed straight up with one flap of mighty pinions. Coming to a dead stop in midair, the midnight-dark beast, silhouetted by the glow of molten rock its emergence had stirred, pumped its wings to stay aloft, bowling over assorted fighters with gale force winds before fixing its penetrating ruby gaze upon El Diablo Azure's human vehicle who was snarling with hatred and fear. 
A fiendish booming cackle erupted from the razor-toothed beak as if mocking the Blue Devil's terror. The hideous sound was followed by a terrible crackling coruscation of power along the pterosaur's cranial horns. Jagged bolts of white-hot death raked across the landscape, converting Ubergeek's erstwhile foes to heaps more ash than matter and narrowly missing the Geek (who'd immediately started moving upon detecting an immense ‘heat-spike’ within the monster) and slamming full on into the energy barrier Demo-GS had thrown up. Punching through as if it wasn't there, the Black Rodan's flame wreathed about and rapidly devoured the aura of dark power surrounding Blue Devil's host. With a final soul shredding howl, the Hell Lord was banished from Goji Son's body, driven from the mortal plane. 
Astonished by this display of eldritch might, Ubergeek and the Count shrank back. The Geekspawn reverted to human form, hoping to go unnoticed. The Black Rodan spotted the unconscious (and, miraculously, non-incinerated) Goji Son's body and the wicked head tilted slightly; sharp predatory eyes locked on and that terrible beak darted, only to be brutally diverted from its mark as the Geekspawn, now towering a full 70 meters at full Neo-Godzilla stature, launched himself into the pterosaur's path. One taloned hand deftly snagged the winged fiend's lethal beak and another struck sparks as Uber's claws ripped at the Black Rodan's ventral armor. Then pterosaur and Godzillasaur derived mutant truly clashed, rolling back and forth near Mt. Rodan's rim. Beating limbs, snapping jaws and slashing talons raised gouts of ichor from both Daikaiju, their screams and roars making what had transpired barely seconds ago look tame. 

Ogasawara HQ 
Same Roost Time, same Roost Channel:  
  

Struggling through a morass of long overdue paper crunchery, Suki Ryota (humanoid Demi-were-Goji and yet another of Ubergeek's many contacts) acknowledged the brief Beacon of Temporary Freedom®-to-be - mail call - with impressive alacrity, appearing out of nowhere a good half minute before any of her human co-workers. Conveniently enough, this allowed for a quick chat with several fellow Children of the G-Cell™, or would have, if the first bit of relevant ‘snail-mail’ hadn't been a prefabricated Roostville Mod notice announcing Sheriff Varan's death and scheduled funeral. Since any conventional postal correspondence with the highly eclectic city-state was erratic at best (and Uber, bent entirely out of shape by the news and his own pursuits, had totally forgotten to inform her), this news was an ugly surprise. Rolling into the hallway upon custom-modified inline skates, Jun Katagiri, Jr. (were-Mire-Goji© and son of the Former Government Flunky®), was first to feel the waves of anguish rolling off his comrade. With a visible attempt to curb said emotions, Suki stiffly handed him the notice.  Casually scanning it, Jun looked up, understanding dawning in his eyes. 
“So you worked with this guy?” A nod. The ex-rudie slammed a clenched fist into the wall, leaving one very prominent dent. Drawn by the noise, yet another fellow were-Goji, cerebrally transplanted primate Carl “Kongzilla” Englehorn, knuckled up to the pair, was informed in turn and extended a massive paw to gently offer condolences. Perhaps fortunately, the P.A. system quickly broke up this poignant scene. 
“All on duty personnel. We have an NLKI (Non-Local Kaiju Incident) in progress, repeat, NLKI in progress.  Proceed to the nearest conference room immediately.” First into said room, Suki, almost in tune with half the Monster Island ‘lifers,’ groaned upon recognizing a satellite based IIR (Imaging Infra-Red) picture of Roostville, which zoomed in upon the vicinity of Mt. Rodan. Via the wonders of live satellite feed, two distinct infrared ‘blobs’ could be distinguished dancing back and forth near the volcano's summit. 
“We've informed Ornithology and they confirm the airborne contact matches up exactly with a Rodan,” growled Col. Heiachiro Gondo. “But according to our local Audubon Society™, its thermal readings are off the charts.” This information, disturbing as it was, had little effect upon the Ogasawara troops who'd grown all too used to the overblown chaos that defined Roostville. “Now, unless I've misread the Geiger, Contact 2 is some sort of Gojira derivative. Damned nimble one, too.” 
“Sir!” Suki, recalling a certain someone's search for a certain Legendary Rodan Derivative™, had a very good guess just who Contact 2 would turn out to be. “Might I investigate and see about defusing this situation?” 
Gondo arched an eyebrow. “And just how are you planning to…oh, right, the were-Goji thing. And odds are that's the Geek tussling with this pumped-up Rodan, right?” 
The Demi-Goji shrugged helplessly: “What can I say, sir? He certainly keeps busy.” 
“All right, then. Anyone care to tag along with Suki for documentation, backup, whatnot?” 
Carl was first to raise a paw. “My sector's been too quiet for the past month. Not much in the way of Evil Stuff to Smash™ since the Gigatyrannus© incident. I'm in.” 
Not far behind, Jun cleared his throat as he stood up. “It's about time I got off my butt as well. Besides, something about this sitch reeks of plot-device-ness… Or something like that.” 
“That's settled, then. If you three will follow me to the hangar, we'll hop on a transport.“ 

Mount Rodan 
1:28 AM:  
  

Dripping ichor from an especially nasty eye gouge, the Geekspawn ducked his airborne foe's next pass; the sonic shockwave of which still rattled his inner ear and teeth with equal abandon. Reflexively whipping his tail upward, he scored a glancing blow to the Black Rodan's dire skull with roughly the same effect. Coasting on a thermal updraft as it regained its wits, the dark Guardian passed scant meters in front of Garuda v.5, giving said craft's crew one helluva shock but fortunately ignoring them in favor of its waiting foe. Wheeling about, the Black Rodan dove straight for the Geekspawn, fury blazing in crimson eyes and eldritch energy dancing about its horns. 
Arriving early at the foot of Mt. Rodan, a female were-Goji, her shaman comrade and their bio-armored pilot landed their craft, then sent out a GPS position update to Raptor's crew, intending to make sure they didn't end up missing the dark-grey Stingray™ against the volcano's dismal terrain. 
At about this point, a fresh bout of malefic cackle and a thunderous roar reached the trio from above.  Extending their senses, Obake and Miyako caught the faintest sight of an incredibly swift winged shape which pivoted and dove back for the mountain's peak as if attacking some unseen prey. 
“It would seem the Guardian has been roused yet again,” mused the shaman. 
At that moment, the winds above shifted, bringing down a jumble of scents, one of which was instantly recognized by Ms. Aso. 
“Great… The Geek's up there and I doubt that critter is all too happy about it. All right, you,” she addressed their pilot, who seemed all too ready to be on his merry way. “Stay here and keep a line open for the Sheriff. We'll be off bailing Uber's bony behind.“ With that, mage and She-Goji were on their way up Mt. Rodan's craggy face, perhaps moving a bit too rapidly for safety by human standards. Burbling its dissatisfaction with the situation, the Grey settled back in its seat and awaited Jet Jaguar's arrival. 

   
*****
 
Laurence had heard the startling cries of some mammoth beast coming from the skies above. He turned to see what the screeching cry of terror was. 
"What the Hell is that?" The man who had insulted the guard at Roostville's gate stood in amazement. 
"So, such a creature as the Black Fire Rodan really does exist..." Laurence didn't look too pleased as he quietly continued his journey up the mountain, hoping that the disastrous creature would stay up on the ledge where Ubergeek and company were. 
The  Black Fire Rodan had also been spotted from the ground. 
"My God! What on Earth is that?" a Mod whispered to himself. 
Jet Jaguar had also seen the monster. "What on Earth could that be? I've never seen anything like this before." He, Raptor and Queen Ghidorah were shocked at the site of the Black Fire Rodan. Never before had a species of Rodan so fearsome and enormous been known in all Kaiju history. 
"The Geek told me about his discovery, remember?" Raptor reminded them. "The Ebon Mutant Pterosaur™ indeed does exist. As well, it seems that both Goji Son and the not so Reverend Michael Lazarus who found a certain tablet here have also shown up." 

     "I don't know about Goji Son's relationship to all this but Lazarus is now a wanted felon for interfering with government operations," Sheriff Jaguar added. "You don't go shanghaiing MY deputies and casting them in Little Theater productions out in the boondocks!"  
"Oh, well. Maybe we can do something with the idea for ROOSTVILLE: THE SOAP OPERA," Raptor suggested. "If we can also charge Lazarus with bad scripting and insulting the intelligence of his audience, I'd be quite satisfied." Queen Ghidorah heartily agreed. 
As they were preparing to ascend Mt. Rodan, the Garuda came flying in low to avoid any giant flying Kaiju that might be up for an early breakfast. Its erstwhile crew (complete with a hamster wearing a flight suit) presented themselves to the Sheriff with unusual aplomb and ceremony, considering the circumstances. 
"RMB MERCENARY SERVICE at your disposal SIR! NO JOB TOO TOUGH! BUTT-KICKING FOR GOODNESS BY APPOINTMENT ON A COMMISSION BASIS OR AS THE NEED ARISES!" JJ looked the shouting Minsc up and down as he stood there at attention, all the while holding a salute. 
"At ease, fella. We'll see what we can come up with," Jet assured him, eying Boo curiously. The hamster rose on his hind legs in a fair approximation of Minsc's posturing in response to the robot's scrutiny. The review was soon interrupted by the sound of various giant entities venting their rage at one another at the top of the mountain. 
 
*****
 
Still recovering from his brawl with Blue Devil's host, Super JJ had been hard pressed to corral Goji Son in a frantic effort to avoid either monstrous combatant. Toss a raging thirst into the equation and the Count was basically at his wits’ end, which probably accounted for his failure to detect one blackened, battered Demo-Cultist as it slunk up behind him, stretched its hideous maw wide and plunged silently down for the kill. The Count did detect a red-hot lance of flame that intercepted the fiend mere inches from his back and a second later was gaping at a scuffle both brutal and very one sided. The indescribable noise of a severed arm's wet end being jammed into its owner's palate finally brought Goji Son to his senses. 
“Damn! Anyone bring Tarantino? Dude could learn from this shize…” Yamoto, still a touch dazed by the speed with which they'd ascended the mountain, leaned on his staff for a moment, surveying a thoroughly battered pair of Roostafarians and the grotesquely mangled Ex-Demo-Cultist© they were staring at before ushering them out of harm's way. 
Having gained Mt. Rodan's summit within 20 minutes, fallen upon the Count's attacker roughly half a second later and messily disabled same within roughly half a minute, Miyako turned her attention to the Main Event™ in time to see the Geekspawn and his foe trade atomic fire. The red-gold standard ray merely seemed to disorient the Black Rodan for a moment; its twisted horns crackling as the excess energy was absorbed. The same couldn't be said of this new Rodan's own heat beam which twisted and sizzled with a life of its own. After a split second exposure to the white-hot blast, Ubergeek reeled, fangs bared in agony. A charred streak of hide ran down his left side. With a furious snarl, Miyako 'hulked out,' dorsals crackling crimson to blue-white before they even finished sprouting from her back. One friend (the depressingly departed Sheriff Varan) had already been lost recently and she was damned if her consort would suffer the same fate. 
Vapor pouring off its wings as it pulled through a Mach-1 turn, the Black Rodan lined up for another run on its stricken prey and met a pillar of blue Hell head on. Several times more potent than a normal atomic beam and fueled by its user's towering rage, the Spiral Ray™ simultaneously overloaded its target's impressive heat metabolizing mojo and stopped it in midair. Nearly stalling, the demoniac pterosaur clawed desperately for altitude to no avail as Miyako adjusted her aim to rake across its left pinion, putting the flier into a flat spin that took it into Uber's reach once more. Sliding back a bit too close to Mt. Rodan's crater for comfort as he caught the stunned beastie, Uber perhaps unwisely scanned his surroundings, picking out the Count and his charge, a staff-wielding ancient whom he recognized with a jolt of surprise and the imposing sight of his female counterpart charging up to join him. The only temporarily stunned Black Rodan sliced into the Geekspawn's chest with outsized talons, clapped its wings together about his head to produce yet another stunning sonic boom and opened jaws for a point-blank heat beam. With an extremely pissed off bellow, the were-Goji kiboshed this last move by slamming open palms into both sides of its skull, wedging opposable thumb claws under the throat and forcing his foe's beak back out of play. Thus hindered, the Black Rodan's treatment only got rougher as Miyako started working its exposed back with tail strikes, each thunderous blow causing vertebrae to grind and splinter. 
“I must say, that does not look pleasant,” grunted the Count. 
“No #$#$ing #$%%, suckhead-GAH!” Goji Son, still a bit out of sorts, now sported a fresh bit of cranial trauma to complement his recent release from Upper Level Demoniac Possession®. 
Obake, with a warning shake of the Disciplinary Staff™, returned his attention to the battle, frowning as he took in the punishment both were-Gojis were dealing. The mage decided it was time to intervene. 
"If you will excuse me, I must offer that Guardian a reprieve." 
In more or less perfect sync, GS and the Count expressed the following sentiment: “What?” 
With a shout of "I shall explain later!" the shaman tore off, racing toward the fray with great ki-propelled leaps but he was too late to make any difference as a frenzied Black Rodan unleashed a nasty surprise. Mistaking the fresh energy spike within their foe for another of those murderous beams, both were-Gojis were instead blasted with an especially potent Atomic Pulse. Thrown back on her side, Miyako scrabbled for purchase on the volcanic rock, coming to a stop after three rolls. Ubergeek, lacking such space, instead found himself plummeting a good thousand feet into the liquid fire below, a death-grip taking his foe with him. 
Molten rock enveloped both monsters, then shifted, bubbled and flashed ominously. Clearing her head with a brisk shake, the She-Goji swept her gaze across the summit of Mt. Rodan, instantly realized what had happened and sprang up to its peak, diving in after her consort without a second thought. 
Circumstances, as Super JJ astutely observed, could be summarized with one word: “Crap.” 
Cursing in antiquated Korean, Yamoto-san turned away from the crater to spy the second Ogasawara crew's late-arriving V-22J. With a display of eldritch light, the tilt rotor transport was waved down about 60 feet away and the Demon-Goji shaman was soon filling his cohorts in on the recent developments. 
As one, Katagiri and Englehorn let a hearty "Crap!" roll off their lips. 
More to the point, Suki wondered aloud, "So just what the hell do we do now?" 
Col. Gondo considered for a moment. "Well, Yamoto-san has the new Sheriff and a couple locals en route, right?" 
"Hai, Colonel." 
"I say we pick 'em up and hash out a plan before we do anything else. It's gonna be a long night but I wouldn't write those two off just yet." 
Down below, the sudden quiet was also noticeable. 
"Maybe we should get up there and see what's going on," Queen G suggested. As everyone was about to ascend, Raptor picked up a familiar sensation she not only felt from the ground but the very air about them. 
"This could get tricky," she advised. "The Earth Sounds are rising in volume." Jet Jaguar had also been monitoring the seismic activity but the patterns did not particularly conflict with norms for such an area. 
"The early peoples of the world were well in tune with the land and could 'hear' what it was saying," she continued. "Modern geology has yet to apply this to earthquake prediction and other uses but to put it simply, it is like the effect of opening a door on a closed room that has been isolated from the rest of the house." 
"What are they saying?" Rado asked, thoroughly engrossed in Raptor's hands now pressed to the ground. 
"A door has opened," was all she could make out. 
Indeed, a door had opened. As the Geekspawn and the Black Fire Rodan struggled in the lava, there was a blinding flash of light and a wall appeared before them; more of a vortex as the lava drained away. The Fire Bird flapped its wings and with a SLIDERS - (first season) - like plop!, deposited the Geekspawn on solid ground once more. He was soon flattened by his fellow were-Goji landing on top of him. Miyako promptly rolled free and assumed an upright stance, ready to fight whatever presented itself. Quickly turning about, she was much surprised to find they were now within a magnificent tableau with all the splendor and architecture of ancient Greece or Rome. 
"Seatopia..." she whispered. 
 
*****
 
Back in the surface world, the V-22 was soon spotted rapidly descending from the summit of Mt. Rodan. Well before the rotors stopped spinning, an ancient shaman, Jun Junior, a great ape-like creature, Suki Ryota, Col. Gondo and Count Super Jet Jaguar piled out. Goji Son remained aboard, in no shape for further adventures at the moment. 
"Well, looks like the gang's all here," JJ quipped. 
Col. Gondo presented himself and introduced his party from Ogasawara. "I believe it would be proper protocol for you to take command of this situation, Sheriff, as this is your jurisdiction..." 
"Thank you, Colonel," the robot nodded to him. "Now if someone would update us on what's going on up there, we can proceed accordingly. Sensei, I believe you should begin", he addressed the shaman. 
 
*****
 
Obake Yamoto's attention was drawn to a blinding flash of light. Laurence had the gateway to Utopia opening before their very eyes. 
"Don't do it!" the shaman shouted. Laurence smiled but didn't immediately turn from the task at hand. 
"And why exactly, should I not... Obake Yamoto?" 
"Listen to me! Do you even know what you're doing?" The sinister smile hadn't left Laurence's face when he finally faced his audience. 
"What kind of a fool do you take me for, Obake?" 
"The legends of this place say the portal is a mere gateway to a mythic Golden Land but it's not. The portal is a pathway to the ancient undersea world of Seatopia. This place has brought death to all who seek it." 
Laurence just laughed maniacally. "Seatopia is the mythical Golden Land. Utopia is the name given it by the ancient Jewish travelers of a thousand years ago. I've been aware of this for quite some time, Obake. And I thank whoever for holding off the great Black Rodan, allowing me to reach such satisfaction without death." 
"Alright, Lazarus. Your days are numbered," Sheriff Jaguar reminded him. Laurence snapped his fingers and his henchmen popped out their KF-7 Soviet Rifles, all aimed at Obake. 
"Drop your guns or the spiritualist will get it!" Jet dropped his and nodded to the others to do likewise. 
"Hahahahahahahahahaha! There's no stopping me, Jet. Utopia's gateway is almost completely open!" 
The bright glow of the inter dimensional portal had also drawn the attention of the Black Fire Rodan and Minsc was about to reach behind him to grab the Two-Handed Sword +3 from the sheath on his back. Rado Goji stopped him with a reminder that Obake would die if any hostility was shown. 
"Stand and deliver, evil!" shouted Minsc. "What is it you are doing here?" 
"That is none of your concern," replied Laurence. 
"I will MAKE it my concern!" Luckily, Rado was able to stop him from doing anything stupid. 
"Don't berzerk, Minsc," he warned his partner. "OK, dude," he turned to address Laurence. "You should stop whatever it is you're doing. Maybe this 'Utopia' whatnot is really a myth and it's just some stupid ruins." 
"Care to try and stop me?" Laurence snapped his fingers and one of the henchmen pointed his rifle at Rado who now had his hand around the holstered Z-Saber, ready to act at a moment's notice. 
Unknown to everyone but Jet Jaguar (due to his sensors), Boo had scurried behind the gun-toting henchmen, ready to plot his next move. Just then, a roaring noise filled the area to announce the approach of Ancalagon the Black™, Melkor, Kedzuel and the Phish (whom they'd picked up on the off chance anyone needed a spare Anti-Psi Field© or Re-Animating Injection™). Observing the tense standoff as they moved to flank Laurence's thugs, the mighty demon-dragon figured if he couldn't weigh into things, a mild distraction was in order but said roar also happened to attract the Black Rodan. 
Still nursing an ugly mood from its inconclusive battle with the were-Gojis, the ebon horror decided to vent said mood upon this new flier, swooping in with an unholy war cackle. Forcing its passengers to cling for their lives, Ancalagon wheeled to meet the challenge, a sky shredding roar escaping his fanged jaws as flame built up within. 
At the last moment, both monstrosities balked, sensing a faint but tangible bond. Shifting their attack patterns to a lazy circle, demoniac pterosaur and Dragon of Morgoth eyed one another, an uncertain rumble escaping the Black Rodan's beak. Able to more eloquently vocalize this new factor, Ancalagon spoke. 
”This creature… I believe it's a Guardian.” 
“Damn… It makes sense, considering the ‘Phoenix’ angle. And I guess that'd make you the Dragon?” mused Melkor. 
“And this means…?” wondered a disheveled Phish. 
“It means we'd better haul ass down there and check out what's up!” asserted Ms. Graham. 
”But of course,” hissed Ancalagon. Folding thousand foot pinions back, the demon-dragon plummeted toward the fray below, closely tailed by the Black Rodan. 
 
*****
 
Back at the standoff, Obake exploited the distraction Ancalagon had caused with panache. Snapping up his Staff of Eldritch Arse-Whoopery™, the mage spun it before him with unnatural speed. Laurence's frantic scream of “PLUG HIM!” came too late and round after round was thrown straight back in his goons’ direction by the defensive ki field Yamoto-san’s staff generated. Several rounds struck home in shoulders, calves or bellies, prompting howls of pain as the afflicted n'er-do-wells collapsed. 
In turn, Boo scrabbled across the rocky terrain, straight into the pant leg of Rado Goji's gunsel. Teeth capable of dismantling two day old bagels severed the hired muscle's Achilles tendon, prompting the unfortunate to mimic his (literally) shell-shocked comrades. The last thing this particular thug glimpsed was a terrible flash as Rado's Z-Saber descended. Adding to the confusion, a missile streaked in from an outcropping to Laurence's left, knocking six thugs off their feet as it blasted a crater in the rock. A white mist erupted, enveloping a further five thugs whose limbs stiffened and lungs wheezed for air as the KR-20 PCR (Personal Cadmium Rocket) worked its magic. 
Unshouldering the launcher, Col. Gondo dropped back to avoid a poorly aimed burst of return fire before directing a grim smile at the eager were-Goji trio. 
“All yours, guys.” 
Jun was off, a rocket skate boosted leap putting him past the debilitating mist's reach. Weaving between gunmen with a skill born of years on the streets, the ex-rudie alternately clothes lined his targets with an outstretched arm, slammed his elbows into noses and crotches and then snagged a thug with a rapidly sprouting prehensile tail, tossing the man a good 30 feet as he skidded about, facing his foes in full Mire-Goji mode (if not height). 
In Katagiri’s wake, Carl “Kongzilla” Englehorn barreled over any gunmen his comrade had left standing, vicious backhanded blows sending several goons on an unscheduled flight. 
With an exultant bellow, Minsc succumbed to the Berserker's call, unsheathing his 2-Handed Sword™ and charging to join the hulking primate. The barbaric brawlers fought side by side, giving their foes no opening to pull back and open fire. Unfortunately, all this left a good eight gunsels, in addition to Lazarus himself, free to lend a hand (or clip, as the case may be). Which is where the Mods© came in. 
With an Ultraman-esque call of ”SHOOWAT!”, Raptor assumed a form befitting her handle, retrieved her large caliber handgun and drew a Rapier/Broadsword Hybrid™ to complement a wicked set of talons. Pumping off several shots to keep her perps’ heads down, the were-Dino™ jumped skyward and was among them in a flash, blade and killing claws slashing in a blender-esque blitzkrieg of motion. Three assassins fell, ichor spilling from wounds designed to cripple rather than slaughter. 
Not far behind, Queen Ghidorah, using the Sheriff's alloyed form for cover against stray shots, darted into the fray. Reluctant to employ his seizure inducing Strobe Light Optics™ with so many allies within range, the Sentai-bot opted for a flurry of hydraulically powered karate blows, busting guns, shoulder blades and heads with equal efficiency. QG, noting one female were-Goji caught in a clot of thugs, moved to assist Suki, launching herself into that fight with the eerie undulating “laugh” characteristic of her kind. 

Back in Seatopia:  
  

As the events topside transpired, Ubergeek noted two things: (1) an approaching phalanx of Seatopians clad in armor vaguely reminiscent of Spartan Hoptites and (2) what felt like an oddly high body temperature, even for him. 
“Say, is it hot in here or is it just me?” Taking her first close look at the Geek since their trip through Mt. Rodan's Dimensional Portal™, Miyako gasped at the burn scar her counterpart had picked up from the Black Rodan, as well as a patch of hide on his chest pulsing with a white-hot glow. Even as she watched, his dorsals crackled with a similar aura. Reading the She-Goji’s horrified expression, Uber felt his mood drop from bad to worse. 
“Hey, what's the prob-“ The Geek perceived his reflection in the base of a nearby bronzed sculpture. Cocking his head to peer down at his chest and left side in succession, the were-Goji further confirmed what he’d seen. 
“Oh.” 
 
*****
 
Breaking away from the brutal rout, Matthew “Lazarus” Laurence snarled at the ancient form blocking his path. 
“Out of my way, Yamoto!” The shaman's eyes glowed white. 
“I think not, charlatan. Pitting your hired guns against dedicated Guardians, presuming to disturb the peace of a world best left hidden… It's time you paid the price for such arrogance.” 
“Fine. I’ll break every bone in your wretched husk and toss what remains on the offal heap of Hell!” Laurence lunged, right fist crackling with fell power and gouging out a lump of volcanic rock as his foe deftly sprang above the attack and spun in midair. Taking a kick full on his right cheek, Lazarus was smashed aside, sliding a good 50 feet before jack knifing upright again. This time, both hands pulsed with negative energy, throwing out a massive black blast which Obake countered with an equally impressive ki bolt. Back and forth the energies danced, neither combatant willing to back down and risk annihilation until a tie-breaker arrived in the form of a certain robotic law enforcement official. Catching JJ's approach in the corner of his left eye, Yamoto-san threw an arm up before his eyes, barely in time to avoid the Strobe's kaleidoscopic effect. Laurence reeled with the loss of vision and balance and was off his feet as an uncontested ki bolt smashed into his chest. Thrown against the mountain peak, he reeled from the strike's power. 
“GIVE IT UP NOW, ‘LAURY.’ YOU'RE DONE!” But the false cleric recalled a final source of aid. 
“Far from it, Jet,” croaked the ambitious Devotee of Hades™. “I've only just begun!” With a sweep of his arm, Laurence released a final wave of dark power which washed over several fallen gunmen. Terrible screams tore from their lips as the unwilling sacrifices were rent limb from limb by the spell, granting El Diablo Azure™ the freedom to walk the Earth upon his own feet. 
An unholy rumble shook the entire mountain, throwing many a Mod and mercenary off their feet. The ground in front of Laurence exploded, disgorging his Guest of Honor©. 
”SAVING ME FOR A TRUMP CARD, LAZARUS? NO MATTER. I'M HAPPY TO OBLIGE---” The Blue Devil noted the unusually still form of Super Jet Jaguar, staring him down with luminescent crimson eyes. 
”AH, RIGHT… THE UPSTART. YOU TRULY SEEK A SECOND DEATH TO CHALLENGE ME AGAIN.” A blood-red aura exploded about the Count, concealing a horrendous transformation and when it faded, the demon Afiag™ stood in Super JJ's place. 
”Bluster all you wish. Talk won't forestall your doom.” 
The amalgamated Roostville Mod/RMB Mercenary Service™/Ogasawara Security team collected their wits and weaponry and prepared to assist Count Super Jet Jaguar©, a.k.a. the Demon Huntsman Afiag, in taking on the Blue Devil, said warrior's most terrible foe. 
With a horrendous cackle, El Diablo Azure™ had upped the ante, summoning forth waves of the Fiendish Evil Green Fluid™®© to drive his assembled foes down the mountain or into the air whilst engaging SJJ/Afiag. Thanks to quick thinking and reflexes by Sheriff Jaguar, Rado Goji and the Dragon Trio (Melkor, Christine Graham and Ancalagon), not to mention Obake's successful effort to temporarily divert the FEGF’s flow, the assembled Forces of Good™ survived unscathed. 
Staggering to his feet, Laurence waved jauntily. “You kids have fun now. See you in Utopia!” With that, he dove for the Dimensional Portal©. 
”YOU'RE GOING NOWHERE, PUNK!” Rocketing after him, Jet Jaguar locked powerful arms about the villain's legs in midair. Unable to brake quickly enough, he guaranteed them both a one way trip into whatever lay beyond. Laurence entered the mystic Golden Land of Seatopia, only to be greeted by a monstrous cry from the other side of the gateway. 
A second Black Fire Rodan came flying out, grabbing a screaming Laurence in its claws. Upon reaching the summit of Mt. Rodan, it set Laurence free, dropping him hard on the ground. 
"No! You cannot... Utopia is mine!" 
Seatopian troops soon stepped through the gateway to their homeland with Emperor Antonio leading them. 
"Who of you surface dwellers dare disturb the secret world of Seatopia?" he called out. 
"I DO!" Laurence materialized and grabbed Antonio by surprise, holding a knife to his neck. "Anyone of you Roostafarians or Utopians move and I'll cut the Emperor's throat!" 
Two Black Fire Rodans were soon flying toward each other and fused into a much larger and more powerful creature; a monster that ancient legends referred to as the Dark God Rodan. It wheeled about and flew overhead as Laurence held Antonio as his shield against sudden death. 
"Now," he said calmly. "Myself and the Emperor are going on a little trip and none of you shall stand in my way." They walked towards the gateway. The riches of Utopia would soon be his and Laurence would crown himself the new leader of the undersea world. It had been his heart's greatest desire since his dear daughter Jessica had betrayed and left him and he found the ancient Seatopian tablet on the mountain. 
Before Laurence entered the gateway to his dream, he offered a thank you to Dr. Phish, Desutoroia and the others who had helped him find the tablet on their expedition a few years back. 
A hideous cry, far more ominous than the sounds of the Black Fire Rodan, echoed over the mountain. It was the fierce and demonic looking Dark God Rodan. Laurence dropped the knife and let go of Antonio as the mere presence of this Rodan was too mesmerizing for him to behold. Antonio hit Laurence, knocking him to the ground. The Dark God Rodan came flying right at them. 
"NOO!!!" Laurence cried out as the great beast entered the Utopian gateway. Its mystical magic caused the portal to begin closing, permanently. 
"My legions. Returneth now to Seatopia!" Antonio commanded. The Emperor and his troops hastened through. Laurence was left outside, surrounded by Mods and were-Gojis. 
"This be where it ends, Reverend Lazarus," the Sheriff declared. 
Just then, a helicopter appeared over the rim of the mountain. Laurence ran toward it and ducked out of sight before reappearing and grabbing onto a ladder that had been lowered. He was pulled up as it made its escape. 
"Lazarus is getting away!" everyone groaned. 
"Not if I can help it!" From Jet Jaguar's robotic arms sprouted twin rocket launchers. "I don't plan on losing this one, even if it means killing him. He's caused enough trouble already so we can't have him startin' any more." Jet fired off two homing missiles which exploded on impact with the fleeing helicopter. 
The Sheriff, Raptor, Ubergeek and the others soon reached the crash site where the remains of the chopper had fallen and found some charred bodies. Jet's sensors indicated Laurence was amongst the dead now. As he and Raptor were retrieving what IDs and other immediate items they could, the rest of the Ogasawara contingent and the RMB Mercenary Service joined them. 
 
*****
 
Ubergeek was relieved when the Seatopians had hurried on their way, leaving him to consider his own predicament. The area on his chest continued to expand, increasing in both size and depth. The were-Goji's dorsal array soon became a blinding streak from his head to the base of his tail. Miyako watched in fascination as the glowing white aura quickly enveloped her consort. 
Within the glare, Uber could feel his very molecules rearrange themselves as an ethereal voice, oddly reassuring, seemed to emanate from all around him. 
"Do not be afraid, Spawn of Kenny. The Guardians simply require your assistance." 
Never had the Geekspawn experienced such an overwhelming sense of power and doubted his worthiness to even be in its presence. 
"Do not despair, for we shall assist you," the voice continued. "In turn, you will be doing a great service to both humanity and planes unknown. There has been a disturbance in the balance that must be rectified by the Guardians. The Dragon and the Phoenix are at hand but the Tortoise must see to another problem in the far reaches of space. The Black Fire Rodan sensed your atomic energy acquired from the Earth's elements themselves and opened a channel to that mana with its Atomic Pulse. You will need its power for the battle ahead." The voice faded and the blinding aura subsided, revealing a Gamera derivative in the were-Goji's place. The prominent dorsal spines had flattened against his back into a shell-like carapace, hinged at various points for flexibility. A sectioned plastron covered his chest and abdomen and at its center, the initial glow was the last of the eldritch light to fade. 
"Wow..." Uber whispered, shaking his head to regain his bearings. 
"Yeah, I'll say!" Miyako heartily agreed. Offhand, things were getting profoundly interesting, even by such standards as the Geekspawn's. 
 
*****
 
 Several X-Factors™ had emerged. First, the advent of a second Black Rodan®, which melded with the first Ebon Demoniac Pterosaur™, creating a still more powerful Guardian beastie one observer had dubbed a Dark God Rodan. It had quickly and efficiently barred Matthew “Lazarus” Laurence from the kingdom of Seatopia. As of yet, nobody had recovered sufficiently to criticize the name. This monstrosity, neglecting the Blue Devil Situation©, had instead opted to seal off Seatopia's only known link to the outside world, defusing that situation for the moment. 
Blue Devil and Count SJJ's second battle had been halted by still more Uneasy Volcanic Activity™, culminating with an eruption of superheated magma from within Mt. Rodan's crater. Wherever this molten rock came in contact with the FEGF®, it instantly withered away, as if some supernatural force negated its fell taint. 
Observing this phenomenon with relief, Raptor and Yamoto-san also sensed the opening of that ‘door’ the were-dino had sensed earlier and in the shaman's case, two familiar psyches approaching. 
A voice, strangely imbued with nervous energy, addressed Obake's questing mind: Hope you weren't missing us, sensei… Be with you in just a second. 
And with that, Mt. Rodan disgorged a massive ovoid form which hovered upon white hot plasma jets as it touched down at the volcano's base. Opening a clawed fist, the mana mutated Ubergeek bent down to carefully release his mate who elected to gracefully jump the last 20 feet or so. Both were-Kaiju sized up the tableau, Uber doing so with a deep growl as freshly enhanced primal senses detected the all too familiar reek of Eee-Vil™. Having reverted to human form preceding their return trip from Seatopia, Miyako fixed an exasperated stare upon the Gamera Geek. 
“You will explain all this later.” It wasn't a question. 
“Of course, milady. With footnotes. Ah, and thanks for having my back.” 
“Anytime.” 
“Now then… BLUE BOY...” The Geekspawn addressed El Diablo Azure, who'd performed an almost comical double take as he sized the Gam-Geek up. “I'm in no mood for your brand of $#!t. Get gone or get char broiled.” 
"Whoa,” observed Melkor. “That's the first halfway decent threat I've heard from him in a while.” Sizing up this apparent new Guardian, Ancalagon froze. 
“Wait… Do you mean to imply that… THING is the misbegotten GEEK?!” 
“Yep.” 
Grinding six-foot fangs, the demon-dragon scowled. “Truly the Valar seek to hound me from beyond, allying such as myself with HIS ilk.” 
Meanwhile, instead of taking the opportunity to flee, Blue Devil had rocketed straight for the Colossal Chelonian™, a black aura building up about him. 
“Char broil, then.” And with nary a warning, the Geekspawn's tusked jaws snapped open, disgorging a white-hot plasma fireball. Expanding as it fed off the surrounding atmosphere, this lethal projectile smashed full into El Diablo Azure, obliterating his dark aura with a horrendous explosion and throwing the fiend, flesh afire, back as quickly as he’d closed in. Three more fireballs, pumped out with incredible speed and precision, further pulverized Blue Devil. 
Unable to take any more, the Hell Lord vanished, a howl of “I’LL BE BACK!” reaching his assembled foes’ ears. 
With the battlefield cleared and the Dark God Rodan™ apparently at rest, an exhausted crew of Unlikely Heroes™ reconvened, Ancalagon maintaining a thermic staring contest with Ubergeek. 
At a prompting from his consort, Uber attempted to regain human form and succeeded, more or less. His hands remained green-gray and wickedly taloned up to the elbows which sported a lethal pair of opposite swept spurs, the fore-pointing ones longest. His eyes radiated a steady amber glow and a pair of elongated lower incisors made speech somewhat difficult at first. 
“Crack-tastic,” observed Goji Son before accepting Raptor's guidance to the waiting All-Terrain Squad Buggy™. He and the other Todd McFarlane Cult members, with the Blue Devil now drawn from their bodies, decided to leave Hellspawn's little cult and go back to living their lives before he tricked them into becoming his slaves. 
Suki Ryota had hoisted a video camera to document their efforts at Col. Gondo's urging, should any questions of continued funding of his little Special Operations Branch come up. Well versed in governmental thought processes, he made sure she got every little detail of the location and participants involved. Ancalagon the Black even touched down to get his share of publicity and confer with Obake, Melkor and Ubergeek. The Dark Lord assured him he and Ms. Graham could catch a ride back to Roostville with the other locals before the dragon made a particularly impressive departure for the viewing audience. 
Jet Jaguar dubbed a copy of the tape on his cruiser's fore and aft deck for his personal library and by the time they got back to Roostville, Raptor had formatted a Special Report for broadcast as soon as they ran it through the editor at the Roostville Cable & Telephone studio and Jet did the voice-over. 
"So what if you end up interrupting ROOSTVILLE: THE SOAP OPERA," she informed the sheriff, who had every reason in the world to get a little recognition. "You are NEWS!" 
And indeed he (and of course, what had occurred at Mt. Rodan) were. With a quickly arranged simulcast on KIJU 108 Radio, all of Roostville would soon have something to cheer about. 
But during the confusion with the Blue Devil, Laurence had made his escape, hopping aboard a beefed-up UH-60 his disciples kept in reserve. He had made the switch with his now deceased double c/o a handy incantation. Of course, he had neglected to elaborate on just what would happen to the dupe. 
Everything on Mt. Rodan wasn't exactly peaceful as Laurence looked at the the fallen helicopter. 
"I knew having a body double take my place was a good idea," he said to himself. "But now with the gateway to Utopia destroyed, there's only one other way to make my dreams become reality." 

 

CHAPTER 6: The LEVIATHAN