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The Masked Avenger


“You’ve lost some weight.”  Underby said, lighting a match and touching it to the end of his cigar.  He stood on the back porch of the Strife House looming over the still mostly chubby boy.

“Tepic’s been workin me.” he huffed, then added: “Still calls me Tubby, though, he does.”

Underby smirked.  “Well, tell then.  I’m not out here for the fresh air.”

The boy smiled.  “It were the most craziest thing I ever saw!”

Underby twirled his hand impatiently, urging the boy to continue.

“There were a lady walking on the street, and a guy came from the shadows, and he looked mean, and he had a knife, it were a big knife, and he grabbed the lady, and the lady screamed, and he said shut up you miserable bag, and pulled at her and pulled her toward the alley, and I was real scared Mistah Underp- bee… real scared, and she looked at me and she screamed again and said help help and I just stood there like I didn’t know what to do, and then… and then…”

The boy smiled again.

“And then… what?”  Underby asked.  He touched the knife, thinking that Bianca was nowhere nearby.  Who would know?

“And then he swooped down to the street.”

“Who did?”

“Don’t right know his name, sir… he sort flew down. Had on all black, and I think maybe he even had wings.”

“Wings, eh?”

“He threw a small ax at the man’s arm which held the knife and the ax hit the guy’s coat and pinned it to the wall.”

“An ax?”  Underby asked.

“Sort of an ax.  Like an ax that a cooking guy would use.”

“A cleaver.”

“Thanks sir, I just thought that idea about the cooking guy up now, it was rather clever.  I’ll remember that sir.”

“So this gentleman with black bat wings, he did what then?”

“He jumped over the lady, and pulled her away from the man and told her she shouldn’t walk in dangerous areas without an ascot.”

Underby blinked, but otherwise ignored this comment.

“The funniest part, though, Mistah Under…. bee… is that the chap’s face… the chap’s face…”

“Yes?  The chap’s face, what?”  Underby was leaning forward.

“It were a skull sir.  His face were a skull, but he could speak.  He talked sort of funny.”


“Yeah, sort of funny.”

“Well, funny how?”

The boy shrugged.  “Don’t know sir, just spoke funny.”

Underby closed his eyes and shook his head.  “Then what happened?”

“The lady she ran off, and the skull man tied that guy up in ropes and left him dangling from the street lamp.  Before he flew up to the rooftops again he looked at me sir, I swear he did, he looked at me and said “Do be careful now, my portly friend.  Is portly mean trustworthy, sir?”

Underby flicked his cigar into the canal.  “Something like that.”  He tossed a two dollar coin to the lad, then kicked open the trap door and stepped inside, thinking: this is ALL I need.


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  1. Victor1st Mornington Victor1st Mornington July 27, 2011

    A caped crusader in The Gut!

    Ohhhhhhhhhhh im gonna have fun with this on Thursday….

  2. Wallis Graves Wallis Graves July 27, 2011

    Skull for a face? Definitely not me then.

  3. Gabriell Anatra Gabriell Anatra July 27, 2011


    Tall tales, nothing more.

    A man-bat with a skull head? 



  4. Giles Berithos Giles Berithos July 27, 2011

    This doesn’t sound good for business…

  5. Emerson Lighthouse Emerson Lighthouse July 27, 2011

    //wonders which urchin will become the faithful sidekick//

  6. Bianca Namori Bianca Namori July 27, 2011

    Looking to Underby as he entered, she finished folding a letter and arched her brow.

    “Troubles dear?” she said simply, but the lifting of his hand to quiet her informed her that there where, and then some. She shrugged and rubbed her face as he retold the tale of the fat one’s interaction with this phantom of the Gut. After a few moments she let her mouth open to a fitful laughter.

    “Doesn’t that fil know that it’s the WOMEN in New Babbage you have to worry about?” she then rolls her eyes and then smirks utterling softly as she seals the letter with the initials C.F. on the wax seal, “Or so some may think you should worry….”

  7. Kristos Sonnerstein Kristos Sonnerstein July 28, 2011

    ::wonders about the stature of this winged skull faced man, frowning to himself::

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