A second kick knocked out the window. The supervillain's fist reached out. Her segmented bracers running the rim of the pane to clear away the burrs and shards that had been left behind. She swung out of the warehouse before the glass had shattered on the concrete walkway below. She was a blur of white, black and wine red. The glass shards crunched under her armored boots as she dropped the story and a half to the ground.
"Wrong exit, criminal," Came a loud, authoritative voice.
"Oh, fiddlesticks." The supervillain pouted. She flipped backwards, landing on her left hand and twisting away from the shimmering bullet. A second pulse shot undulated for her center of mass but she had drawn her Jian sword, Xie Zhi Ren, during her acrobatics. She slashed through the projectile backhanded. The pulse dissipated with her heavy grunt.
Crimefighter wasn't much of hero but he did look like one. He was dark skinned with immaculate black hair slicked back from his unmasked face. His eye color remained obscured behind his gold tinted eyeshield. He had the strong jaw and the hard body. The supervillain saw a joke.
Gulf City, like every small city in America, had it's own Crimefighter and Action Boy. The off brand superheroes that operated primarily as a local PR arm of Great Justice and secondarily as heroes. The supervillain saw the gold trimmed red armor, his breastplate designed to show off broad shoulders and abdominal muscles. The body armor was worn over scaled under-armor that covered his arms and legs. He had on boots that put her armored greaves to shame. His forearms were covered in gauntlets to match. His cape fluttered pathetically. He stood as if he wore a golden battle flag. He didn't look the part with his cape drooping in the stinking Gulf of Mexico breeze. His symbol was a bright gold C, like a captain's emblem on a hockey jersey, burnished over his left breast. He held a fat mouthed pulse cannon in his right hand. The supervillain was ready.
"Wicked Sharp, identity unknown," Crimefighter read from his gold tinted eyeshield, "Known associate of Jefferson Grant, alias Doctor Nightmare. Wanted for questioning in relation to countless grand thefts, massive vandalism, four disappearances--
"Oh, the boy can read!" Wicked Sharp grinned smartly.
"-- and two acts of domestic terrorism," Finished Crimefighter.
"Oh, shove it in next the stick! Les Belles blew up that ship and the Young Defenders burned down that campus!" She snarled, "Those were your acts of domestic terrorism."
She whined and air quoted but she was smiling. Her identity was still a secret even after Doctor Nightmare's wasn't. She had expected interference on behalf of her superiors. They really had given up on Jeff. She should have ditched much earlier. She hoped her three years of service was worth the spark they had promised her for this mission. A little superspeed would go a long way. Until then, she had her wits and her skills.
Wicked Sharp was an excellent swordswoman, Xie Zhi Ren thrust with surgical precision. She aligned for Crimefighter's center of mass. Her cheongsam, a Mandarin gown, was crafted from a highly protective fabric that didn't cover her arms and legs. The cheongsam was white with a phoenix design in red. It's skirt barely hardly covered the tops of her thighs. A winding red sash rolled off her hips and had scabbarded her sword moments ago. Her raven hair was pulled up into a tail and was tied in a ribbon to match her sash. Both silken lengths rippled in the wind mocking Crimefighter's cape. Segmented bracers protected the front half of her forearms. White enameled boots armored up past her knees.
"Surrender and we can proceed without violence."
Wicked Sharp's eyes looked out from her eye mask with humor. She cocked her dark lips. "Some first date you are. You don't even want to have a bit of fun before you try and take me home."
"Criminal--" Crimefighter seemed shocked that the supervillain would rush him. He fired at her but she eased to one side. His thumb ratcheted up the dial on the side of the gun.
Wicked Sharp wheeled through the undulating projectiles. Xie Zhi Ren squealed as it took in the oscillating kinetic energy. Pimples of dull red light blossomed down the white blade. The skirts of her cheongsam rose up over the muscles of her thighs. She stepped down hard, her foot sideways between Crimefighter's greaves. Her right hand twisting aside his chromed blaster. Her left hand adjusting the grip on her sword. One quick strike, through the dragonsilk and ceramic armor and in below the diaphragm would immobilize the hero. She didn't want him dead. Murdering supervillains didn't fight KMart Crimefighters. Murderers fought Challengers. She had witnessed Meteor Man in Arizona. She'd seen footage of Soldier off the coast of Massachusetts. She had heard stories of the new girl, Pretty Awesome, destroying a tank by smashing it with another tank. A Challenger dropping from the sky would end her.
"This is over," Wicked Sharp declared and lunged. Her body wrenched forward. She slammed her shoulder into Crimefighter's breastplate but her sword wouldn't penetrate a millimeter.
Generally, if someone is carrying a pulse gun, they're not quite capable in the closest of quarters. This Crimefighter failed to meet Wicked Sharp's assumptions. His left hand slammed into her chest in an open palm strike. She was lifted off the ground. She slammed her shoulders back into the warehouse's corrugated steel fence. Her vision blurred a moment under her bandit mask. She had less than a second to react. She only managed to avoid Crimefighter's next attack by a hair. Not even her hair. The pulse damaged the tip of her ponytail. She felt the tingles all the way into her scalp.
"Nice punch," Wicked Sharp growled. Crimefighter was slowly walking towards her. Pulses rippled the air. The lighter the shots the better the accuracy.
"Leave your weapon and strip off your armor and you will be brought in without further injury," He announced. He projected confidence. Wicked Sharp had face Crimefighters from Jacksonville to Juneau. She hadn't even need her sword in most of those fights. She had drawn steel today because she demanded speed. She had gone for the brutal move because she had needed to get away.
"Dammit!" She hissed. A pulse grazed her shoulder as she tried to tumble into position for another lunge. Crimefighter was closing the distance at his pace. She was on his schedule. This was going to have to be a fight. Wicked Sharp wasn't going to take out this Crimefighter alone. Losing to superhero knock-offs wasn't acceptable. She had to change the plan.
The first stagings of his mad science laboratory were built inside the warehouse. Doctor Nightmare hadn't even taken the time to booby trap the complex or devise his patent pending, ridiculous, thrilling, but always effective, escape plan. The warehouse appeared abandoned from the street. It appeared abandoned from the fight. Blacked out windows hid everything but the hiss, gurgle and stench of boiling chemicals.
Wicked Sharp made for bay doors. An unloaded truck waited at the dock. She twisted out and around the onslaught of energy bubbles. Her sword was starting to sing with the energy it had absorbed. The dull red pimples grew livid and were linked by a spiderweb of hot metal. Crimefighter approached.
"My agent is taking out your compatriots inside," Crimefighter ratcheted down the blaster as the distance closed. He did not relent, his shots growing heavier and flying in imperfect trajectories. Wicked Sharp weaved away from a blast that vibrated the massive truck. A center of mass hit and she'd be an erratic sponge on the asphalt.
"You sent an Action Boy into face off against Doctor Nightmare!" She laughed, maybe she cackled, "How badly did you need the insurance money?"
"I'm more than confident--"
But Crimefighter hadn't been confident. He stammered a moment. Wicked Sharp grabbed the back segment of her left arm bracer. It split away from her wrist into two half moons. The squeal of steel blades was shrill as they snapped open from all four ends. They were shurikens, boomerang shaped throwing stars, and they were arcing and airborne in a casual backhand throw. The first shrieked along the barrel of Crimefighter's pulse gun. Plastic and fiberglass peeled back from the gash. The second shuriken sliced the arm off of Crimefighter's eyeshield. The breeze whisked his scored hair from his head. The optics fell down and the next pulse from his blaster expended more than a third of its energy out the side. Crimefighter cussed as the kick threw the gun across his body.
The blaster had been Wicked Sharp's aim. She wanted that weapon out of commission. Its destruction wasn't as complete as she had desired. Her second blade was sent straight for Crimefighter's jugular. Risky! Stupid! A successful hit and there'd be very dangerous reinforcements. Her hasty throw had gone a third of a foot high and he had pulled his head aside in time to save his eye.
"Well, seems like there's no more fun to be had out here," Wicked Sharp laughed as she landed a backflip onto the lip under the door, "Let's see how our boys are doing."
Xie Zhi Ren whistled as Wicked Sharp pirouetted. The hot sword sheared away a wide triangle of the rolling steel door. The ruined door crumpled behind her before she tried to back flip into the warehouse.
.... There is more of this story ...