Princess Tutu Fan Fiction ❯ The Madrigal: Princess Tutu and the Secret Six II ❯ Chapter 2
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After Annie had left them to their own devices, they began to horse around and have fun as they usually did after a great show. Billy decided he was going to tease Ahiru about her clothes a bit. “I have never understood the concept of the grand tutu. I mean, look at it, that has to get in the way!”
“It's for freedom of movement, silly!” said Ahiru, wondering why he would not see that.
“What do you mean?” asked Billy, “You can dance in those skirts.”
Rue decided to chime in, and said, “You don't understand, we have to kick that stuff out of the way, and it can drag a bit. If it wasn't fit right, you could take your leg out from under yourself.”
Now his sister chimed in, and said, “This way we can do this,” and she did the standing “Y”, as Rue said, “Or we can do this,” and she popped up on one toe, lifting her other leg and crossing it in front of her bent as she crossed her arm across her chest, with her other elbow on her hand, the other on her chin. Ahiru then did a high leg arabesque, as she put her hands under her chin palms down, fingers touching, saying, “Would this look as pretty?”
Billy, seeing that he was being ganged up on, decided to try to defend himself, and went, “Pretty, I would say that. Practical, I am not sure.”
“It's practical for us!” said Mary firmly.
“It's not for us guys,” said Billy, “For example, when we have to waltz, (and he came up to Ahiru and took position,) look—you have a ton of tutu up your crotch. And then when I make a life, (he went behind his sister,) see—I feel like I am being attacked by an amoeba!”
“Just shut up and do a lift, would you, I want to show you something,” said Mary, and Billy complied. He grabbed her at the waist and she gave a jump up. He held her over his head as she arched her back and put her legs in a jette position. As he walked around, she said, “See, this looks visually appealing.”
Billy got funny, and said, “Well, I guess it could be good for one thing.”
“What's that,” Mary asked.
“If I drop you, you have a built in parachute,” and he slacked his arms for a split second. Mary felt the shift and put herself back erect as quickly as it was feasible in order not to throw out Billy's back, and snapped, “William H. Batson, don't you even think about it!”
Everyone laughed as he set her back down. Fakir looked at his watch and said, “Come on, we have to get changed up and get you three back to school so you can get ready for orientation tomorrow.”
As they went, another drama was playing out with which they would soon get involved.
There had been a rash of bank robberies in the city in the past two weeks. The jobs were being done by a group of five thieves who had gained the name of the Terminator Bandits. They would all dress in boots, jeans, tee-shirts, leather jackets, large and black sunglasses, and slicked back hair. They would hit banks with large picture windows in front; because of the way they would act. One would come in and ask a common question that anyone would ask, but without the glasses, slick hair, and leather jacket on. He then thanks the teller for the information, and that he would be back. A few minutes later, a pick up truck would smash through it, with two in the cab, three in the back, and they would then rob the place. They would time it with when the police would be there, and get away before anyone could act. A large bounty was placed on them by the police, and that was enough to make the man watching this one bank want to act. He stood on a ledge around the corner of a building across the street from a bank that he did all he could to lure the bandits to by finding ways to feed them information about the bank, cameras in the bank, security, and how much actual cash was on hand. All this was in an attempt to catch them red handed, and then move in for a citizen's arrest, (CA,) which was right in line with any good bounty hunter that acted within the law. Sure enough, a purple pick up truck much like the one described in the other jobs was parked at a T-bone intersection across from the bank, and it let out a man in much the same apparel as had been described before. However, because of the reports, he was wearing a blue sweatshirt to try to throw off any suspicion.
He entered the bank, and asked a couple of questions about new accounts, and what was offered. They gave him some brochures and he thanked them sincerely, saying, “We'll, I'll look at these, and I'll be back.”
Because he laid it between his other words, the teller did not pick up on it right away. By the time she did, the truck was already on the way. The bounty hunter watched and waited for the job to actually be done. He was not going to charge in and risk the lives of the people in the bank. He rather was going to give chase, lessening the chance of people being hurt. Within about three minutes, the truck pulled out. As it was, the hunter was already jumping down, using a light pole and a tree limb to guide him down. He hopped onto the high powered black and white BMW motorcycle and gunned it up as the truck started to pull away. He tore after them, knowing that a $10,000 payday awaited him if he could make the collar.
The six were outside the building in which the studio sat, being followed by both Mr. Katt and Mr. Tawny. Mr. Tawny approached the kids and said, “Well, personal appearances don't seem to pay as much as your other shows, but its great publicity anyway.”
“I just thought it was fun,” said Ahiru.
“I'm glad to hear that,” responded Mr. Tawny, “Keep that good attitude, and I'll take care of these things. No need for money worries breaking your concentration when you do the voodoo you do do so well.”
Billy laughed, and said, “You and that dry sense of humor or yours—you're going to kill someone with it someday!”
Katt and Tawny both got into their own cars to go discuss a few act related matters, and the kids were heading for the van. After the cats had left, they heard the roar of a large hemi engine heading in their direction. It shot by in a blur, followed by the sound of a loud motorcycle in hot pursuit. It was moving so fast that they could not see very well who rode on it. All they could guess was that he was wearing black bike leathers. However, about three cars from Fawcett's finest were also in pursuit, lights and sirens wailing away. “It just couldn't be a quiet day, could it,” said Rue, who was already heading into the back of the van with the others to make a certain transformation. Billy and Mary were already moving once they saw the sight. They ducked into an alley and both hollered, “SHAZAM!” preparing to jump into action with the rest of the Secret Six. The van was also black and unassuming, but inside laid a mini-crime computer and crime lab, as well as anything they needed to do what they did. It also had a 427 engine under the hood, and a wider wheel base than other vans for making high speed turns. It began to tear off as the Marvels followed up.
As they were catching up to the pursuit, the Marvels got ahead to see what was going on. It looked like the Terminator Bandits that they had read about in the papers, but they had never seen the person chasing them before. In fact, by the way he was dressed; they knew they had not seen this person, because they would have remembered something like that. He, (or she—they were not sure yet,) was wearing black racing leathers, motorcycle boots with white trim, steel racing plates on the shins up to the knees, white motorcycle gloves, a black, open faced helmet with a pair of highlighted bird's eyes, with a tinted glass visor that hung down below the nose that had the appearance of a straight bird's beak. He or she was wearing a cape shaped like a pair of bird's wings, all black, except for the feathered ends, which were white. With this person bent over it was hard to see anything else. The biker was fixed like a laser beam on the truck ahead, slowly gaining on the target, but still keeping a distance of sorts. The men in the truck saw the pursuit, and then bore their shotguns on the target. The hunter saw this, and he was about take evasive action when two red blurs appeared in front of him. He then realized that the Marvels were also in pursuit, and took the rounds that were meant for him. He then saw Captain Marvel whisper something the other Marvel's ear, and she pulled away. Captain Marvel then picked up the truck off the ground and started to take it down the direction of a side road. He cursed under his breath, thinking that he was about to lose a payday. Thus, he found the road, cut a racing turn, and followed up.
Back at the van, Mary appeared at the driver's window, and told Fakir where the Captain was taking the truck, and they cut down the road that would lead them right to the truck. Meanwhile, the police cars were flummoxed. They did not expect such a change of affairs so quickly, and tried to change course and follow the pursuit. It would take them time, though, because they were not as maneuverable as the motorcycle that had been ahead of them. They were not sure, but it seemed that they bounty hunter of whom they had been informed was also in the chase. Since they knew what the reward was, it was easy to see why he would be interested. Marvel set the van down, but before he could blink, the men were already out of the truck on foot. They were heading back down the road from which they came, and ran smack into the rest of the Secret Six. Tutu already had one of the bandits tangled up in a nearby hedge, and White Knight disarmed a shotgun out of the hand of another with his sword, followed up by a spinning kick to the gut. The bandit, though big and muscular, was on the ground in a fetal position. His eyes did not close, for they too wanted to know what had hit them! Another came up to Claire, tried to bring up the shotgun, but she was too quick with the barrel, batting it upwards, grabbing the wooden handgrip under the barrel, and whipping the man around to the ground, disarming him. He stumbled to his feet, not knowing what she intended with the gun, but was then shocked when she tossed it aside. She looked athletic, but he was bigger and stronger, and he thought he had it made. He grinned and started to approach. However, since she had twice the strength, speed, and agility in this state, (not to mention the Aikijutsu and Tai Chi training that she had,) he was in for a surprise and a rough ending to his day. He charged, and she knuckle locked with the man. She then twisted his wrist and started to turn him as he began to flip. He hit the wall upside down hard, and then slid to the ground and conked his head, leaving him with a pretty good concussion. The fourth was tackled midriff, and he went down hard. However, when his attacker rolled away, he was on his feet, but not as fast as Black Knight, who hit him solar plexus and chin about fifteen times before he could react. He was out before he hit the ground. The last one was getting away with the loot, but they figured that the Marvels could handle that. However, before that could happen, the man on the bike appeared, the white bird emblem on his chest being clearly seen now, as was his face cover that went up to cover his nose, so only his eyes could be seen, and the white utility belt that he wore. The last man brought his shotgun to bear, but the man managed to snatch the barrel and even snatch the shotgun out of the man's hand before could react. The bird looking man tossed it aside, knowing that this bounty was only good if the man was taken alive. However, the last bandit, (bigger than the rest,) produced a healthy bowie knife and looked skilled in using it. Yet, before he could do any damage with it, the hand that held the knife was twisted, and then broken at the elbow. This was followed by a spinning foreleg to the gut that brought the man down in a heap. In a short time, the Terminator Bandits' crime spree was over. The bird man pulled out plastic pull ties and started to restrain all the men, saying, “Thank you for the help, but this bounty's mine!”
“Have at it,” said Fakir, “We just do this as a public service.”
“That means you have the money to do this,” said the man, “I don't, and this is how I am able to do this—bounties.”
Tutu, ever the congenial one, came up, smiled, and said, “And may I have your name?”
“Just call me the Magpie,” said the man, and he went to deal with the now approaching police. The police recognized the Marvels and the rest of the team, and thanked them for the help. “You know, there is a bounty on these guys. We could split it between you seven…” but Captain Marvel said, “That's okay. Just give it to the Magpie here. He stopped the important one before he got away with the money.”
Magpie nodded his approval as the six headed out. Magpie then gave a report, and then gave them a card. “Contact my manager—Johnny White Wolf. He takes care of the financial side, and all you need to do is tell him where to pick up the check.”
With that, got on his bike and left as the police and EMT people took care of business.
Oddly enough, the whole affair was being watched. In a shop across the street marked “Otto's Toy Shop.” The proprietor of the shop was watching keenly as he adjusted his owl eyed glasses on his pointy nose. He was an old, balding man who had the Benjamin Franklin haircut. He had an old, friendly, but wrinkled face and a warm smile. He wore a white peasant shirt, dark green apron with various pencils, pens, and various tools in the pockets, brown trousers and tan shoes. He was old, but still cut an imposing figure for his age. His specialty was mechanical dolls that were designed in the old style. Even though the kids loved the new, electronic gadgets, there was still a wide market for what he built. However, as he watched, he said, “Tisk, tisk, tisk: the young people of today are so sloppy. They were too loud and brash. I knew they would be caught before long.”
He then turned to his creations around him and said, “But soon, they shall see the true genius of Otto Drosselmyer. Ah, my lovelies—soon you shall show these people what true crime is all about!”
He lovingly caressed the dolls one by one, knowing that they would soon make him a wealthy and powerful man. Sure, there was still a market for his work. Yet, for years, he tried to get science and society to recognize the practical uses for his mechanical genius, and he was turned down flat at every hand. Even that Dr. Savannah would not touch him. Lexcorp laughed at him, as did the rest of the world of business and upper crust society. Soon, they would rue the day they laughed at him. As he mused, he went back to his workshop to his masterpiece. He was almost done with this one, and this doll would be unique. It would be self winding, and completely mechanical—no electronics involved. However, it would be the first true artificial intelligence. Such things had been discovered even back in colonial times. All that needed to happen was to have the right things preset inside the mechanical dolls, and they would behave right. They could even mimic breathing, and there was not an ounce of electronics in them. He set this one so that it could have senses and even talk. In fact, the inside was completely set up as if it were a human, but every organ, bone, and piece of tissue was mechanical, inside a body of wood. The head contained the countless pins and wires that would make everything work once it was initially wound up to work, and the rest would take care of itself. Many of the pin settings would act like memory, and it could then learn and act as it was told. This one would make the world turn on its ear. “Oh, my dear Uzzura—you are going to be my masterpiece. You could usher in a whole new existence. I cannot wait for the day to activate you!”
By the time the got to Kinkan, they had all gone back to themselves, and Rue said, “We'll be by for your placement trials tomorrow. However, it would shock me if you three didn't make advance placement again. We'll practice after, but we will not be there on Wednesday: we have to go over the blocking for the city ballet's next show.”
“Then we'll kick around some new ideas on that day,” said Ahiru, “We'll see you tomorrow.”
They turned to enter the gate, and that is when they saw the limousine. They had just come in as the passenger stepped out to greet Mr. Johansson. They seemed cordial enough, and that was when they recognized former President Luthor who had gone back to heading Lexcorp after he left the White House. Ahiru and Mary just thought it neat that he would be here, but Billy got an angry look on his face. The girls were both surprised when they heard Billy spit out, “Oh God! What is HE doing here?”