Random Acts of Science III, Part Six: Cold Hearts

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(February 4th)

“Well, Ada called. Operation Get Ecchs Out Of Town was apparently a roaring success. She barely had to suggest it and he jumped on the bandwagon.” With a smirk, Lucy swung herself around the edge of the doorframe into the meeting room, then sighed heavily. “Aww, it’s just so quiet in here these days. Hazard is off with Shivarex getting ready for our operation, Psi-Borg is off looking for our next recruit…” She sighed dramatically. “It’s just you and me, Smithy.”

“I wish you would not call me that, Lucy. My name is Joshua.” Sitting in the only other occupied chair, Lord Mayhem raised an elegantly-trimmed grey eyebrow.

“Yeah, well, I already know a Josh. Don’t want to get confused or nothing.” Shrugging, Lucy strolled forwards and flopped down into one of the chairs.

“Then kindly refer to me by my moniker. I don’t appreciate the nickname.”

“Sorry, Lord Mayhem.” Rolling her eyes, Lucy tilted her chair back on two legs, then carefully shifted her weight until she was balancing on a single leg. “Didn’t realize it was such a sore spot.”

“Given that we’ve had this conversation a half-dozen times, I find that a little hard to believe.” Lucy didn’t respond, and Lord Mayhem smiled faintly. “Is something the matter, Lucy?”

For a few moments, Lucy stayed quiet. “You’ve had a lot of experience, Mayhem. You fight in many wars?”

“Not particularly. I have been in more battles than I could count, but I was not a soldier. That was my father’s life.” Mayhem settled back in his chair. “Mercenary work did not appeal to me, nor was I particularly a patriot – not that the United Kingdom has fought many wars regardless. When the Throx returned in ’78, I fought against them, of course – you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who did not. But no wars.”

“I’ve been in wars.” Lucy stared off into space. “And now we’re about to get involved in another one, just because Rex Mundi’s worried about getting one-upped. I don’t like it.”

“I see.” Mayhem smiled.


“Nothing. Nerves, I can understand.” He looked over to her. “I was simply beginning to worry that you were coming down with a case of the conscience. It’s been the bane of many young supervillains.”

“Please. You want moral qualms, go chat up Hazard. This girl is one hundred percent conscience-free. I’ve seen where that gets you.”

“Excellent. I apologize for even mentioning it.” Mayhem said. “Still, I must confess to being slightly confused. With your impressive powers, I would have thought that a war would be the least of your concerns.”

“Hey, I’m not indestructible. Wars are the worst sort of place for me to be. I survived one by the skin of my teeth. Lost a lot of friends. This time…” Lucy shrugged. “Well, we’ll see.” She pushed off her chair, hopping lightly to her feet as it crashed to the ground behind her. “What’s left to do before the big day?”

“I will be traveling to Atlantis and making sure that the psi beacons malfunction when necessary. I believe that you simply need to prepare the teleporter, and arrange for Malefico to take the blame.” Mayhem stood, bowing to Lucy, then moved to set the chair she had knocked over back. “If you have any preparations to make, now would be the time.”

“Think I’m good. Got the suit all gassed up and ready to roll. Should be fun.” Lucy made a fist and mimed punching someone. “Set the Champions up, and later on we can knock ‘em down.” Strolling to the door, she paused and leaned back across the doorframe. “Oh, hey, Joshua?”

“Yes, Lucy?”

“Good luck.” With a wink and a salute, Lucy pulled herself around the door and sauntered off. Mayhem shook his head with a quirk of a smile.

“Quite a child. A few more like her and we’ll either conquer the world or burn it to ashes. Either way, it will be interesting to watch.” Shaking his head, he walked from the room.

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