Chapter 28:



The main deck of the USS Lexington was full of tourists taking pictures. The sea was free of shark fins. The coast was literally clear. Marilyn’s helicopter flew overhead.

Puck raised her arms and let them fall to her sides. ‘Well, now what?’

Sam smiled. ‘Maybe we could tie Puck to a line and see if Shark Man takes the bait!’

All the tourists dropped the cameras, put on slasher masks, and took out slashing weapons.

A trap! thought Mezu. ‘Zone: Wave.’ Little waves splashed around him.

The other Blue Nasties entered the Zone. Their slashing weapons and costumes materialised around them.

Big Bad Wolf rose atop the giant main gun at the centre of the warship. ‘Well, well, well, what have we here?! We were fishing for a shark, but we’ve caught some premium quality lobsters!’

The slashers cackled.

‘Let’s see now…’ said Big Bad Wolf, ‘the Lumberjack, Puck, Mezu, Sam Jacinto, and even the turncoat Loco Lobo! The famous Blue Nasties! You’ve been making quite a bit of progress in the Death Game as of late! Killed Pigskin! Killed Fubsy the Clown! But you’ve made a lot of enemies too! Lumberjack and Mezu, you killed Golden Bear and Little Red Riding Hood, and I’m going to rip your guts out for that, but I’m not the only one here with beef!’

From out of the crowd, a little Arabic girl holding a bright green viper stepped forwards.

‘Lumberjack,’ said Big Bad Wolf, ‘this is Viper! She was the protégé of Queen Cobra, the Slasher Slayer, before you went and killed her! Apparently, the rest of her slasher hunter gang got mysteriously wiped out while she was in the restroom crying, so all she’s got left in life is killing you!’

From behind a fighter jet, Gozu, Jiangshi, and Onryō revealed themselves.

‘Gozu!’ said Mezu.

Gozu chuckled. ‘Did you really think you could hide how soft you’ve gotten from me?’ He gestured to Lobo. ‘Running a day care for your enemies? Absurd! I’m taking over the Udon Family! I will reassert the strength of the Yakuza! We will once again be the masters of Asia!’

Mezu raised his zanbatō. ‘Over my dead body!’

Gozu nodded. ‘Yes, that was a part of the plan, yes.’

Big Bad Wolf gestured at them. ‘I can tell you two have some issues you need to work through.’

A giant alligator-frog chimera burst out of the water and landed on the main deck. On its back was the brunette with reptile scales in a red dress that had managed to escape the Blue Nasties at the Devil’s Circus.

‘This is Alice!’ said Big Bad Wolf. ‘She’s got it in for Loco Lobo for betraying the Devil’s Circus and helping Fubsy the Clown kill the Ringmaster!’

Alice smiled at Lobo with crazy blue eyes. ‘Bill the Lizard’s going to give you a spanking, Puppy!’

The alligator-frog snapped its jaws.

Lobo snarled.

Big Bad Wolf laughed. ‘The feeling is mutual, I see.’

Puck twirled her bladed hockey stick. ‘Anyone special for little old me?’

The slashers muttered among themselves.

‘No!’ said Big Bad Wolf. ‘No, you’re just generally disliked, Puck! You have a bad attitude!’

Puck frowned.

A luchador raised his hand. ‘She cut me in line at the Sportsmen cafeteria once.’

Puck pointed her bladed hockey stick at him. ‘Thanks, Frank. Appreciate it.’

‘Wait a minute,’ Jack said to Big Bad Wolf. ‘How did a B-list slasher like you manage to get a slasher gang this big together?’

A little girl’s voice came from across the main deck. ‘He didn’t!’

It was Girl Scout! She was wearing an eyepatch and had a new cybernetic right arm.

Girl Scout took a bite out of a cookie and grinned. ‘I did! I knew you morons would come running if you heard one of the Big Five was in trouble, so I set up a welcoming party for ya’! I was thinking since you’re called the Blue Nasties, I’d go with the Butterfly Smashers!’

‘But why, Girl Scout?!’ said Sam. ‘I thought we were frienemies!’

Girl Scout went red. ‘We’re not frienemies, you idiot! You dropped a tree on me!’ She pointed to her eyepatch and cybernetic arm. ‘You left me crippled!’

‘Oh yeah.’ Sam tilted her head. ‘Well, why didn’t you use a Zone Technique to heal yourself?’

You can’t heal something if there’s nothing left of it!’

Girl Scout lifted her eyepatch.

Everyone flinched.

Puck lightly slapped Sam on the arm. ‘Oooh, you’re in big trouble, Mountie.’

Sam frowned. ‘There’s no I in team, Puck.’

‘There’s no U either.’

Big Bad Wolf clapped his hands together. ‘Great! Now that the unpleasantries are over with, let the violence begin!’

Gozu unsheathed his red laser katana. ‘Zone: Laser.’ A red energy shield surrounded him.

Girl Scout took out her chain knives. ‘Zone: Storm.’ Dark clouds and lightning coiled around her body.

The Butterfly Smashers circled the Blue Nasties, laughing and taunting.

Mezu moved over to Jack. ‘You have a plan, right?’

Jack sighed. ‘I was kind of hoping you would.’

The warship capsized so its front was in the water.

The jaws of a Great White Shark half as big the USS Lexington emerged from the sea.

Shark Man had arrived.

Joe Gold
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