Chapter 7 Page 75
Posted April 22, 2022 at 03:05 am

You may recognize these guys from way back in the day. Thanks for reading!



Agent Stix was hurtling backwards through the air. Her thick Baxborough accent was somehow still audible within the endless parade of uppercase As streaming in a comet trail behind her. She'd been thrown from atop the barrier, it seemed, and would soon become a pancake on the ground.

Gasps echoed in chorus through the camp of gathered spectrals, then a series of less harmonious shouts and bangs and sizzling splashes of energy as every Consortium agent prepared a different superpower to assist her. Walker clapped his hands together, Spender gathered strands of light, a man with three eyes swelled his own head four times larger, and another agent rolled a pair of dice, cursing as the number she got swallowed half her lifespan.

It was Agent Stix herself, however, whose powers saved her first. "Rewind!" she squealed, pressing two fingers to her temples, and the film reel mouse ears on her head began to spin.

An anticlimactic air settled on the camp as Agent Stix shifted into stuttering sepia and flew into the sky, screaming in reverse the whole way up. Her coworkers used the minute that it took for her to track back through her original climb up Mayview's barrier to shrug and congratulate each other on their hypothetical heroics. Everyone agreed they all would have been very impressive indeed.

At last she reached the ground. Spender waited politely while Agent Stix walked backwards towards him at a brisk one point five times her normal speed. The rewind finished with a fizzing static hiss, at which point she said "Let's see what dis friggin' blowhard's made of!" and immediately started marching towards the bubble to climb up again. 

Spender and the others scrambled to intercept. Several patented Stix punches and a "what's da big idea" later, the group managed to slow her advance long enough to convince the plucky spectral that she'd already been topside. Convincing her she'd almost died was harder—her power to rewind herself also rewound her brain, and, consequently, Agent Stix was certain that she never made mistakes.

"It's true, Cinny. We didn't stand a chance against that guy." Agent Stucks had descended the barrier in pursuit of his partner, clinging to it with his sticky lizard digits. For the small price of never being able to show his face in public lest the government dissect him, Greco Stucks had gained, through his possession, the power to make anything adhesive. Everyone agreed he was a real poor sport about it.

Presently, several of Agent Popova's smaller selves were stuck to him like living Christmas ornaments.

"That spirit's got some nose," one of them peeped. "It sniffed out our exact location from at least a mile off." 

Another tiny Pasha sighed. "Everywhere's upwind when the whole storm's in its control." Each smaller Pasha's voice was higher than the next size up, and everyone agreed that that was cute. "I don't think ambush is an option, I'm afraid."

Agent Walker leered up at the sky, looking weary but determined. "...Then I reckon this one's gotta go down Texas style."

The assembled Consortium members mumbled gravely in agreement... except for Spender, who stepped forward on his own.

"Spirit fusion," he said calmly, and the other agents had just moments to react.

A burst of spectral energy surged forth from him like blinding golden flame.