This story is my first story in my new series, Wanted.
Max Digital had always loved spring. He enjoyed the sun and the blooming flowers, and enjoyed life to it's fullest when spring was present. But most of all, he liked all the fresh fruit that bloomed during that time. Mixed with nuts and bolts, they made a excellent, healthy smoothie.
Laying down in his room on his cot with a ray if light on him, Max felt content and at peace. Whistling a happy tune, he closed his eyes and soaked in the sounds of spring.
The birds chirping, the breeze blowing, and Zach Shockwave whining. The last one Max could skip.
Zach was his teammate on the Sardis Hero Team, which consisted of Darren Bolt, their team leader, Adam Starbeam, an elite Hero, Zach Shockwave, the natural whiner and the master manufacturer of making sounds of agony, and himself, Max Digital.
"Spring is such a nuisance," Zach grumbled, "It clogs up my pipes!"
"Chillax man," said Max, not leaving his cot, "just get them cleaned."
"I did that an hour ago! I wish spring was never created, because it's my least favorite season."
"You say that with fall too, and summer, and with winter!" Said Max.
Max groaned inwardly and silently prayed that one day Zach would be transferred to another team. Then, he got off of his cot, his spring solace shattered. He didn't feel like trying to get it back again.
Oh well, he told himself, things could always be worse.
Things couldn't get any worse, thought Adam Starbeam. He had been sent to observe the famed assassin Noboto at the Nuts and Bolts Cafe, a infamous criminal hangout.
Since a disguise was mandatory, the Hero Factory had gone through "great pains" to try and disguise him. From Adam's point of view, his disguise brought him great pains. The Hero Factory had dressed him up in hap-hazard, green and red non-fitting armor to make him look more like a criminal. He thought he looked more like a Christmas nightmare.
He finally been able to hire Noboto. The famed assassin had had several clients in front of him that were paying more. After a week of arguing, the Hero Factory had finally agreed to give him an extra hundred-thousand credits to get him farther up in the line. So now here he was in a dirty bar with drink stains all over the floor, the scent of alcohol thick in the air, sitting on a chair way too small for him, waiting to pay a wanted criminal. Yes, life sure could be strange sometimes.
Finishing the last of his ale, he looked around for Noboto. No sign yet, but as everyone knew, the criminal was extremely good at sneaking up on people. Adam hoped this meeting wouldn't be the end of him.
Looking out once again, he noticed that the crowd's normal hectic movement with no pattern was no longer all over the place. All the people on the left seemed to be moving away from someone or something, and the other half on the right were backing up as far as possible, squishing unlucky patrons against the hard, metal wall. They all seemed to be moving away from something.
And that's when he saw the figure in wrapped in a black cloak moving towards him. All you could see of the robot was it's glowing red eyes, that had a sinister glint, with a hint of something else, perhaps madness.
Adam stepped up and tried to get out of his chair but tripped. But surprisingly, the figure sat down across from him. Adam quickly got back into his chair and composed himself.
"I want the hundred and twenty thousand credits right now," said the figure.
The voice sounded like one of a ruler's that was pompous and used to getting his way. Adam knew that this was Noboto in front of him. Then, Adam corrected himself about Noboto's voice. His voice sounded entitled, but that was normal for someone who was expecting what was promised for a job. Besides, Noboto wasn't pompous and weak like many rulers. Adam had originally thought there was something wrong with Noboto's eyes, but he realized that Noboto was scanning the room while Adam was talking to him.
"Right here," said Adam, trying not to sound disgusted at the thought of handing over a small fortune to a wanted criminal. He never had had a good poker face.
"And here's the proof," replied the bounty hunter sliding a silver disk across the dented and scarred table.
"Good," replied Adam, and gave him a giant credit bag bulging with credits.
Seeing that the deal was done, Adam pushed out his chair and headed for the bar to grab another bottle of ale before he was going to head out. Since he was supposed to be healthy, a premium ale was a treat rarely enjoyed.
But that was the last thing he thought before he felt blinding pain and he was shoved to the ground. Looking down, he saw the outline of a sword. Above him was Noboto, holding the credit bag in one hand and the sword in the other.
"Nobody messes with Noboto", he said, and Adam's Hero core failed.
The Sardis team got the news just two minutes after Adam's death took place. The usually happy Darren and Max became somber, and Zach became even worse then before, muttering about the insane price about stock and how he was cheated out of victory in a Robo-Ball game three years ago.
Unfortunately for the three of them, they couldn't rest. They had a new mission, which involved Noboto. Hero Factory spies had learned that Noboto planned to murder Zantos, the political leader on the planet Argo.
Since they all had a vendetta against Noboto now, all three of the Heroes wanted to get going as soon as possible. Hero Factory told them to wait a day, hoping for the trio to simmer down. It didn't work.
The next day, as the walked to their Hero Craft, they had an air of they all felt like a beam of sunlight had pierced through their dark clouds of grief. They were being given a shot to find and arrest Adam's killer. It felt good to have that.
Zach cracked his knuckles all the way to the Hero Craft and Max and Darren, once inside their craft pretended they were punching Noboto's face. But after a few minutes, they all settled down and the Hero Craft lifted out of the hangar.
The planet Argo was barren, But was extremely humid because of water twenty feet beneath all the sand. It didn't help that there were also five suns. You were either tough, desperate, or a full-blown fool to live here. But that was before Pandora came to be.
The only big city there was Pandora, the epicenter of all activities, and the location of the President's mansion. Zantos was a good speaker, and he had come to this world. He had quickly built the city of Pandora and the grateful citizens had named him president in three months flat. Pandora now has several busy ports and the business was booming.
Max himself had listened to some of his speeches on the radio. The good thing about Zantos is he didn't lie, cheat, or steal to get his goals like a lot of politicians Max had heard of. The bad thing was that even though he aced brave, he was a coward at heart, and that he just said his speeches, not really caring about justice or whatnot. And he was pompous, VERY pompous.
The Heroes ended up staying in a hotel for free thanks to their status as Heroes. They checked in and went to their suite. Since their were only two beds, Max kindly took the sofa bed. Then, they cooked some food and went to bed for the night.
At the crack of dawn the Heroes awoke. Gathering their supplies and their weaponry, they they hailed a taxi and had it drop them two blocks from the mansion. They needed to walk some, and they could be more stealthy this way.
Already, four of the five suns were peaking out of the clouds, and by the time they reached the mansion, all three Heroes were sweating bullets. Checking in with the burly guards holding energy rifles, they were finally let in after a half hour of going through security.
Heading towards the president's personal quarters they observes their surroundings. Apparently Zantos had a taste for old paintings, because they were all over the wall, clustered in small bunches. After several twists and turns, they finally were escorted to Zantos's private office. The security guards stepped in with them though, not trusting even three Heroes.
"Why hello Heroes," said Zantos, "Care for anything? My chef makes excellent pastries. How about we talk over lunch. Biff! Xerto! Leave us so we can have a private conversation! And have Maria prepare a meal."
"Yes sir," mumbled the two guards, as they stepped outside the doors.
"Now, down to business," said Zantos, "I assume you were briefed at the Hero Factory."
"Yes," replied Darren, "you said send the best available Heroes, so here we are."
"Good, good," said Zantos, "now let me show you something."
He pushed a button on the table, and it flipped open, revealing a secret stairway.
"Not even my guards know about this," said Zantos secretively, "it connects beneath the city. You can exit through any building through these tunnels."
"So this is our contingency plan huh," said Darren. He had to hand it to Zantos. He was well prepared.
"Now let's tour some more of my mansion." Said Zantos, "the food will be in my office when we get back."
Zach tried to zone out. He had been hearing about a home theatre, a hover-bike track, and how great Zantos's house was. It made him sick and annoyed.
He had figured out Zantos was really pompous about an hour ago. He really wished they could eat some of those pastries Zantos had talked about. Then again, the tour had kind of made him lose his appetite.
But then they came to a part of the mansion that caught Zach's eye. It was a big open room with a skylight dome on the top. You could even take an elevator up to an overhanging balcony. It was something that was actually worth putting in your house from Zach's opinion.
Marveling at it he thought he saw a twinkle on a part of the balcony. Looking back again, he could just see the outline of a sniper rifle. Acting quickly he shoved Zantos behind a chair right as the sniper fired. Zantos then proceeded to scream like a little girl and cower behind his chair in fear.
Almost immediately the Heroes reacted and returned fire. Darren opened fire with his chain gun and to his left, Zach saw Max start firing away with his laser pistols. So Zach pulled out his grenade launcher and fired away.
The balcony was being blown apart, but Noboto was not being hit. Pulling out a few grenades he tossed them off the balcony. The explosion was a giant one, and the Heroes turned their faces away, hoping and praying this wouldn't be their last moments.
Tired of their previous unsuccessful attempts, Max activated his boot jets and soared up to the overhang. Noboto was wearing a dark cloak as normal, which disadvantaged him greatly from Max's opinion. Grabbing his cloak, Max, pulled.
The fabric ripped and Noboto was pulled back. Then he leaped at Noboto with a crazy tackle.
Noboto tried to turn, but Max brought him down. Determined not to be captured, Noboto rolled around with Max on the floor, somehow ending up on top of the two of them. Now that he had the upper hand, Noboto was pretty sure this was one fight he'd win. But everything changed when a grenade ripped through the part of the balcony they were on
Max felt himself falling and tried to get on top, but Noboto wasn't having it. Noboto punched him in the visual receptors, and he knew the ground was getting extremely close. Wriggling desperately, he desperately tried to save his short career. But it was no use.
Knowing the end was near, he closed his eyes and accepted his fate. This wasn't the glorious death he wanted, but he would take it with dignity. As if tasting victory, Noboto, loosened his grip.
That was his mistake. Max got him with a kick to the stomach and flipped Noboto under him as they hit the ground. There was a resounding crack as they hit ground, and Max felt a terrible pain in his legs. Looking down he saw Noboto was gone. Then he saw only orange and he blacked out