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Night Shift Chapter 8 Match 17939 Hannibal King and The Night Shift (Marvel) vs. The White Rabbit and Walrus vs. Deadly Ernest and Swarm


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Chapter 8: You Always Keep Me Guessin’

Max delivered a kick to Jerome’s groin.  He crumpled over in pain as Max kipped up to his feet.  Jerome shook his head to gather his senses then snarled at Max.  Max tried to land another kick but it was caught by Jerome who tossed him aside against the stone wall. Dansen leapt on his back and her arms around his neck in a choke hold.  He waved his arms until he grabbed fistful of her hair and flipped Dansen off him.  “Stay out of this, babe!” he snapped, moving towards Max.  “This is between and your knight in shining armor over here!”  Max yanked a tapestry off the wall, and hurled it, covering Jerome.   Jerome tore through the fabric just in time for Max to deliver a punch to his face.  The big man fell to the ground, and in an instant Max was on top of him, fist raised to strike again. 

“Brothers!  Hold!”  Everyone turned to the doorway.  Standing there was a statuesque woman draped in black silk robes.  Her skin was white with albinism, and her black hair was tied into a single ponytail that reached down below her waist.  She was flanked on either side by two women in purple and red robes.  Dansen scrambled to her feet and bowed her head.  “Sister Nekra.  I apologize for this disturbance.”  Nekra strode into the room, giving a disapproving look to Dansen.  “Are you the cause of this, Sister Dansen?”  Jerome pushed Max off him and rushed to Nekra.  “I was just trying to get a fighting lesson, sister.  But then Brother Max jumped in attacked me!” 

“That’s a lie!” shouted Max.  “Calm yourselves, brothers,” Nekra soothed.  “We are all children of Kali.  Kali does not wish us to fight amongst ourselves.” 

“But Jerome is lying!” Max argued.  “Dansen didn’t want to be with him!”  Nekra looked back to Dansen.  “Well, Sister Dansen?”  Dansen kept her head bowed and took a deep breath.  “I made a mistake, Sister Nekra.  I behaved inappropriately.”  Max was taken aback as Jerome leered at him.  Nekra closed her eyes, and the other sisters drew close behind her.  She opened her eyes and smiled at Jerome.  “Brother Jerome, I have good news for you.”  Jerome looked confused.  “Um, you do?  What kind of good news?” 

“The best kind, brother.  Kali has spoken to me.  You have been chosen to receive her blessing.”  The sisters behind Nekra raised their hands above them.  “All praise Kali!  All praise Kali!” 

“You’ve got to be kidding!”  The three women stared unblinking at Max.  “Why would Kali give him a blessing after what he’s…” 

“Brother Max,” Dansen said with a strained voice.  “Do not question the will of Kali.  We must obey her commands in all things.”  Nekra nodded to the other sisters.  “Well spoken, Sister Dansen.  Sister Ushas?  Sister Shaya?  Escort Brother Jerome to the chamber to receive his blessing.”  Jerome looked very pleased as the two attractive woman took him by both arms and walked with him out of the room.  He looked behind him at the fuming Max and chuckled as disappeared into the hall.  Nekra bowed to Dansen and Max.  “Please remember your words, Sister Dansen.  And you remember them as you, Brother Max.  Kali’s blessings upon you.”  After Nekra had left the room, Max whirled to face Dansen.  “What was that about?  Why didn’t you tell them the truth?”  Dansen picked her robes off the floor and started to put them on.  “I cannot speak against someone who Kali has chosen.  That is not the way of the temple.” 

“Well, maybe Kali has made a mistake!  Or maybe Sister Nekra did.”  Dansen turned toward Max indignantly.  “Sister Nekra is the voice of Kali!  She guides us in her teachings!  She will lead us on the glorious day of Kali’s return!”  Max shook his head in disbelief.  “I don’t know about that.  I only came here because I wanted to learn how to fight.”  Dansen scoffed.  “Of course!  You don’t truly believe in Kali!  You’re no better than Brother Jerome!  He’s only interested in finding women, and you’re only interested in training.  Why?  So you could make up for not being able to save your parents?!”  Dansen stopped short, seeing the hurt expression on Max’s face.  She looked away from him.  “I think you should leave, Brother Max.  And do not approach me again.”  Max took a step forward, then turned and walked out, leaving Dansen standing by herself in an empty room. 

“Hannibal?  Earth to Hannibal?”  Hannibal King looked across the table at Terri.  They were sitting in a French restaurant that Terri had been telling him about.  He never could pronounce the name, but it was French so it probably sounded less interesting in English.  All around the dining room were guests being ushered to their seats and engaging in quiet conversation.  “Huh?  Yeah?” he asked.  Terri rolled her eyes.  “Typical.  The one night we have off, you ask out for dinner, then you just sit there staring into space.”  Hannibal adjusted his tie then moved the salad around his plate with his fork.  “I’m sorry, Terri.  I’ve just been thinking.” 

“About Shroud?”  Hannibal tapped the plate with his fork then set it down again.  Terri sighed.  “Look, it’s over.  You haven’t heard from those freaks in weeks.  Ever since what happened at the Headmen’s lab, no messages, no leads on Tombstone, nothing.  They dragged into their world, then they let you go.” 

“But why?  Why would Shroud ask me to help and then just let me and you walk away?  Maybe it’s some kind of test; he wants to see if we go to the department and tell them what happened.”  Terri gave a small laugh.  “Yeah, because I would really want to go to DeWolff and tell her that I was kidnapped by Tombstone and rescued by a bunch of monsters.  She would have both our badges and put psych watch for weeks.” 

There was the sound of shouting coming from the front door, then the maître-de came flying into the dining room and crashing into the table next to Hannibal and Terri’s.  Everyone in the dining room looked to the doorway and collectively dropped their jaws.  In the doorway, stood a woman in a one piece swimsuit, a blue plaid trench coat, and a pink bowtie.  Her face was painted white with whiskers and she had headband with bunny ears.  She was accompanied by an extremely large man in a brown bodysuit, who had what looked like tusks sticking out from his mask.  The woman twirled her folded umbrella and pointed it at the customers.  “Good evening, all!  This is a stick up!  Allow me to introduce myself!  You can call me… The White Rabbit!”  Her large companion nudged her with his elbow.  “What about me?”  White Rabbit rolled her eyes and hissed under her breath.  “I’m getting to you!  Shut up!  You’re ruining the moment!  Ahem.  And my friend, the greatest force of mass destruction alive: the Walrus!  Now, we’re already running late, so if you would be so kind as to hand over any valuables, we will be on our way without causing you much bodily harm.” 

Terri looked at Hannibal incredulously as other patrons started laughing at the sight of the bizarre pair.  “Do you think this is a test too?”  Hannibal stared at the would be robbers.  “Well, they sure aren’t any member of the Night Shift I saw.”  Walrus looked around at the laughing crowd.  “They aren’t giving us their money, White Rabbit.”  White Rabbit groaned and waved her hand dismissively.  “Then show them we mean business, moron!”  Walrus nodded and lumbered to an empty table.  He picked it up with ease and hurled it at one of the booths, forcing the people eating air to run out of the way before the table crushed them. 

Terri and Hannibal drew their guns and aimed at Walrus.  “Freeze!” shouted Terri.  “LAPD!  Stay where you are!  Get down on your knees now!”  White Rabbit yawned.  “Blah blah blah.  Sorry, but we can’t.  You see, we’re not ourselves today.  But the best way to explain it… is to shoot it!”  She twirled the umbrella and pulled a hidden trigger.  Explosive bullets struck Hannibal and Terri’s table, forcing them back.   Walrus stomped toward them with fists raised.  “Now we got ‘em!  Oh yep!  We sure do!” 

“Think again, lardbutt!”  Walrus turned behind him to see two men in business suits rising from a table.  Another stood up from a booth next to them.  “Who are you guys?” Walrus rumbled.  “Just some people…” Barton Grimes said.  “That want to tell you a story,” continued Percy.  “Or just kick your ass,” finished Hangman.  Barton and Percy raised their hands to their faces and shouted in unison.  “Once Upon a Time!”  They transformed into the forms of the Brothers Grimm, summoned their clouds and flew to Terri and Hannibal’s side.  Hangman pulled on his hood, and threw his noose like a lasso.  White Rabbit sprang through it with a mighty leap and opened fire at him.  “You guys again!” Terri shouted.  “Shroud wanted to make sure to keep an eye on you,” Percy explained as Walrus trudged toward them.  “And that you didn’t do something stupid!” Barton snapped as they all jumped out of the big man’s way.  He crashed through their table and went on running through the doors in the kitchen with a clatter.  “Leave these two to us!” Percy shouted.  “Get the civilians out of here!”  Hannibal and Terri nodded, then turned to the frightened guests still hiding at their tables.  “All of you!” yelled Terri.  “Follow me to the emergency exit!  Move!”  Terri led the crowd behind her, as the sounds of battle followed them.  Hannibal noticed two men sitting at a booth watching the fight calmly.  “Hey!  You two!  This isn’t dinner and a show!” Hannibal called to them.  “Move it!” 

One of the men slid a glove off his hand and rose to his feet.  “I assure you, monsieur,” he said.  “We are exactly where we need to be.”  A waitress ran past the table to get to the exit, and the man grabbed her by the wrist.  The girl screamed in agony, twisting her arm to try to free herself from the man’s grip.  But her screams grew weaker and weaker, until her legs collapsed out from under her.  Finally, the man let go, leaving a lifeless husk on the floor.  White Rabbit looked annoyed at the macabre scene.  “Hey!  Did the Headmen send you guys too?!  They said this was our assignment!”  The man removed his other glove and nodded to his friend.  “Not at all, mademoiselle.  We have an assignment of our own.  To all of your petty leaders.  All praise Kali!  Brother Fritz?”  The other man cracked his neck and had a demented look in his eyes.  “All praizzzzzzze Kali!  All praizzzzzzzzzzz!”  The man’s skin begin to rise and fall on his face, as if something was moving underneath it.  Suddenly, the skin fell away, revealing countless bees swarming around in a human shape.  Hannibal stood frozen as he shouted to the Brothers.  “You wouldn’t happen to know who these freaks are, do you?”  Percy’s terrified voice rang clear through his mask.  “No idea.”  Barton clapped his hands together and drew a sword from his sleeve.  “But it’s going to be fun trying to kill them!” 

OK:

All combatants at full strength.  The Night Shift is Brothers Grimm and Hangman. Hannibal is still not a vampire.  

Game On! 

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Learn More About
Hannibal King
Read more about Hannibal King at Wikipedia
Official Site: Marvel Comics Links: Wikipedia Marvel Database Marvel Universe

The Night Shift (Marvel)
Read more about The Night Shift (Marvel) at Wikipedia
Official Site: Marvel Links: Wikipedia

Walrus
Read more about Walrus at Wikipedia
Official Site: Marvel Links: Wikipedia Spiderfan.org Marvel Universe Appendix

The White Rabbit
Read more about The White Rabbit at Wikipedia
Official Site: Marvel Entertainment Links: Wikipedia Comic Vine Marvel Wiki

Swarm
Read more about Swarm at Wikipedia
Official Site: Marvel Comics Links: Swarm's Wiki Article Comics Should be Good Official Website

Deadly Ernest
Read more about Deadly Ernest at Wikipedia
Official Site: Marvel Comics Links: Wikipedia

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AND NOW THE CONCLUSION

Barton charged toward Fritz with sword raised.  A deluge of bees flew out of Fritz’s arm and swarmed around him.  Barton cried out in pain as Percy rushed to his side.  “Hold on, Bart!”  He reached to his sleeve and pulled out a seltzer bottle.  A spray of water sent the insects retreating back to Fritz.  “Always kicking hornets’ nets, aren’t you?” asked Percy, creating a second seltzer bottle and tossing it to Barton.  “Ah, shut up and fight!” he grumbled.  “You cannot fight the will of Kali!” Ernest proclaimed.  He slowly moved forward as Fritz started hovering in mid-air.  Percy and Barton summoned their clouds to fly out of his reach.  “Don’t let him touch you!” Percy yelled.  “I know!  I have eyes!” Barton snapped.  “You worry about Bee Movie, I’ll take care of that guy!” 

Walrus had a vice grip on Hangman’s head as White Rabbit menaced him with the umbrella gun.  “So sorry, executioner,” she said, poking him the face with the end of the umbrella.  “I know the queen will need you to chop off people’s heads.  But I guess she’ll just have to find someone else!” 

“I’m Hangman, you stupid, little ARGH!” Hangman’s tirade was interrupted as Walrus tightened his grip.  “Don’t be mean, Mr. Executioner!  Just be quiet while White Rabbit kill you!”  Hannibal tackled White Rabbit to the ground.  “Okay, lady,” he said as he tried to pin her down while reaching for his handcuffs.  “Time for you to go back to Wonderland.”  White Rabbit kicked out with her legs and Hannibal flew back into a table.  White Rabbit kipped up to her feet with wild look in her eyes.  “Everywhere is my Wonderland, mister!”  She gave a bounding leap towards Hannibal with the umbrella ready to swing.  Hannibal caught her by the wrist, and threw him over his head.  She tumbled through the air and crashed into a corner booth. 

“Hey, White Rabbit!” Walrus called.  “What should I do?”  Hangman’s eyes closed, not merely in pain.  The enchanted rope snaked across the floor and slid up the oblivious Walrus’ leg.  Before Walrus could realize what was happening,  the Hangman’s noose had wrapped around his throat and levitated over his head to tighten it.  Walrus started choking and gasping for air, and was forced to let go of Hangman.  Hangman fell to his knees, shaking his head to clear his thoughts.  Hannibal looked to see Walrus suspended in air, and his face turning blue.  “Hangman!” he shouted.  “Stop!  You’ve got him!  Let him go!”  Hangman stared coldly at Hannibal.  “He’s a criminal.  He dies today.” 

“Hangman!  Let him go!  He isn’t like the Headmen!  If you kill him, you better kill me next.  And if I die, Terri will make sure the LAPD shuts you down!”  Hangman fumed, but the rope unwrapped from Walrus’ throat, letting him crash to the floor.  Hangman then rose to his feet and ran towards Barton.  He swung his sword at Ernest who caught the blade and yanked it from Barton’s grip.  “That costume may protect you, mon frere,” he said.  “But not for long!”  He reached out with both hands only to have them tied together by Hangman’s rope.  Barton delivered a backfist to Ernest, who stumbled back as Hangman and Percy moved behind him. 

White Rabbit staggered the booth and ran past Fritz, his bees buzzing angrily as they attempted to dry themselves from the seltzer.  “Let’s get out of here, Walrus!  We are running late!”  Walrus slowly moved up to on knee.  “Late? For what?” he coughed.  White Rabbit shoved him as hard as she could towards the door.  “It was a reference, idiot!  Move!” 

“They’re getting away!” shouted Hannibal.  “Never mind that,” said Hangman, his grip tight on the end of the rope attached to Ernest.  “We still got this one.  I’m sure an evening with Dansen will tell us all we need to know about him.” 

Ernest spit on the ground in disgust.  “Bah!  I shall never be in the same room as the traitor!  Unless it is with my hands around her throat!  Until that day…. Brother Fritz!  Allez!”  Fritz rose into the air again, the swarm filling the room.  The Night Shift covered their faces and dropped to the ground to protect themselves from the stings.  Hundresd of other bees started spiraling around Ernest, and managed to lift him up with Fritz.  The swarm smashed through a window and carried the two into the night.  “All praise Kali!” they shouted, as the Night Shift and Hannibal stared after them in the sky. 

The door slammed shut behind Jerome, and Ushas and Shaya moved to either side of the chamber.  “Hey.  It’s kinda dark in here,” Jerome said.  “Don’t worry, Brother Jerome,” said Nekra.  “We will provide proper illumination.  Sister Ushas?”  Ushas lifted two nunchaku from her belt and began quickly spinning them before striking them on the ground.  From the place where the nunchaku strike, a ball of light rose up and expanded until the entire room was lit.  Jerome stepped back, and saw at the other end of the chamber, carved out of obsidian was a statue of the goddess Kali.  Nekra, Ushas, and Shaya bowed to the idol, and Jerome awkwardly followed suit.  “Sooo,” he said, turning to the women with a grin. “Are you lovely ladies here to give me my blessing?”  Nekra shook her head, as Ushas and Shaya shared an amused look.  “No, Brother Jerome.  Kali has chosen you.  Kali will bestow the blessing herself.  Kneel before Kali.”  Jerome looked back at the statue warily.  He laughed nervously.  “Yeah, listen, just what sort of blessing is this?  I thought that we were gonna…” 

“BROTHER JEROME!” Nekra’s shout wasn’t the only thing that made Jerome take a step back.  It was her face.  Her eyes were filled with fury.  Her teeth seemed to become sharper like fangs.  Then after a few seconds, as Nekra began to breathe and collect herself, the monstrous features began to subside.  She gave a cold smile to Jerome.  “You will receive your blessing.  It is the will of Kali.  Sister Ushas?  Sister Shaya?”  The two acolytes grabbed Jerome by his arms and forced him to kneel before the statue.  He struggled to free himself as Nekra raised her hands to the sky and faced the statue.  “Oh, Kali.  She that is passion!  She that resides in silence!  She who is pure!  She who is mother!  She who is the ultimate!  You have commanded your servants!  We have brought you your chosen!  Let him accept your blessing, and be reborn!” 

The light in the room began to fade, as darkness began to spill from the mouth of the statue.  Jerome screamed in terror but Ushas and Shaya held fast.  The darkness quickly surrounded Jerome, swirling around him as he begged for mercy.  Eventually, patches of fur could be seen sprouting over his skin.  His face cracked open to reveal the painted face of a mandril.  Jerome’s cries were now growls and grunts. 

Nekra looked to the ceiling and smiled, as if noticing something was looking down at her.  “We’re coming for you, Brother Max.” 

The Shroud shook himself out of his meditation with a start.  Dansen took his hand.  “Shroud?  What is it?  What did you see?”  Shroud quickly rose from the cushion and swung open the door, striding down the hallway.  “She’s coming.” 

Nagan drummed his gorilla fingers on the table.  The other members of the Headmen plus Wyndham sat with him.  “How long must we wait?” Nagan grumbled.  “Patience, Dr. Nagan,” said Wyndham.  “We must wait for our leader to fully analyze the data provided by Miss Dodson and Mr. Carpenter.”  Chondu got up and paced around the table.  “Bah!  The White Rabbit and the Walrus?  Honestly, why did he choose them as specimens?  They were lucky to get away from that fiasco at the restaurant!” 

It was not a fiasco, Chondu,” The Headmen rose from the table, as the man who was George Tarleton, former employee of AIM, entered the room.  He was still seated in the chair that he had been imprisoned in, but it had now been converted to allow him to hover.  His enormous head was held in place with metallic supports, held together by the band that ran across it.  “MODOK believes that operatives White Rabbit and Walrus were effective in dealing with the Night Shift.” 

“Does MODOK have any thoughts concerning those other two creatures?” Nagan snidely asked.  MODOK hovered toward him and glared.  “Do not question MODOK directives, Doctor Nagan.  You may have developed the technology may have granted me this form, but it does not mean you are my superior.  My intellect surpasses the combined IQ of the Headmen.  And my power is certainly enough to deal with  a poorly constructed hybrid like you.”  Nagan turned away, and MODOK went on.  “MODOK believes the appearance of these other super powered beings was a coincidence.  Our primary objective must be to deal with the Night Shift.  Then we can worry about other variables.  MODOK therefore demands continued work on enhancing our soldiers, including Project: Spider.  Understood?” 

“Understood, MODOK,” Wyndham said.  The other Headmen echoed their agreement.  But though Nagan mouthed his consent, in his mind, he continued to curse the day of the accident that created MODOK.  And longed for the day where he would resume full control of the Headmen, and use the shattered chair of MODOK as his throne. 

Next Time: Strange Things Did Happen Here! 

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