Log Title: Lucky Meeting You Here
Date: April 11, 2016
TP: Out of Luck TP
Summary: Cobra Commander meets with an odd group of underlings, even for Cobra.
As logged by Cobra Commander - Monday, April 11, 2016, 5:07 PM
Rancho Corba Acres - Luck, CA
- Unlike the rest of Luck, California, the gated Rancho Corba Acres community seems to be thriving. The local buildings have been newly renovated. The lawns are trim and green, even with the ongoing drought. Kids can be seen playing outside during the day, looking free and happy, and at night the streets seem to be free of crime. It's a happy oasis in a desert of decline.
Cobra Commander has gathered his forces in the nondescript office building he's been using as a headquarters in Luck, California. For now they're left waiting in the waiting room, and what an odd collection they are. Cobra Commander leaves them to stew a few minutes longer, as his Imperial Crimson Guard stand on either side of the door to his office, preventing anyone from entering before they are called for.
Satan is here, but you wouldn't know it, since he looks exactly like a potted plant. The plant does not move at all. Satan is REALLY good at not having to pee.
Deadline, better known as Eddie in Dreadnok circles, is cleaning his fingernails with a pocket knife as he waits. Over Kill and his BAT guards catch his attention, and he smirks slightly. "You think he's gonna show?" he asks. This particular Dreadnok is apparently not of Aussie stock; he definitely has an American accent.
The door to Cobra Commander's office opens, and a third Imperial Guard sticks his head out. "Satan?" he says, as if unsure that's right. He glances back into the office, and then back in the waiting room, looking around for a red repaint of Storm Shadow. Not seeing one, he turns to go back inside. "I don't see him, sir," you can hear him say to the Commander. "Of course you can't see him, you buffoon!" the Commander's voice rings from the office. "He's a ninja! Send him in!"
Sei Tin flips off his sneaky outer disguise to reveal SATAN, the bright red ninja! There's a puff of smoke and suddenly a bright red ninja is standing next to Cobra Commander. The potted plant is mysteriously gone. Satan bows ever so slightly to Cobra Commander, making sure not to lower his eyes.
Over Kill blinks his eyes off and on in surprise as he turns to see the plant become Satan. "Ahh. Ninjas! It could have been an assassin. I really need to scan the room better." He comments to himself. "Unit: Eddie of the Dreadnoks." He nods "And Cobra Commander." He and the BATs give a in tandem salute.
Since his name hasn't been called, Deadline remains right where he is until it's his turn. In the meantime, he pulls a small tin out of his pocket, and begins using rolling papers to create a few hand-rolled cigarettes for later. The ninja potted-plant trick gives him pause briefly, then he shrugs and returns to his rolling papers.
Cobra Commander steps to the doorway and looks out. "Yes. Security here is lacking, Over Kill. I want you to spread your BATs out throughout Rancho Corba Acres, but discreetly - coats and hats for all of them." Giant metal menaces in slouchy hats and trenchcoats in the middle of mild California spring weather - THAT's not going to stand out. Cobra Commander turns his head towards Deadline, and hisses, "I'll be right with you," and then closes the door with Satan in his office. The Imperial Guard look over Deadline and Over Kill, and then resume staring straight ahead.
Satan glares at Cobra Commander behind his shiny red ninja mask. He flexes his pectoral muscles. First the left one, then the right one. He has amazing control over his body. And this is what he uses it for. Is this intimidating or merely silly? YOU DECIDE.
"'Kay, thanks, Boss." Eddie's on his best behavior today, apparently, as he's never actually met the leader of this operation that managed to save himself and his partner from probably life in a federal supermax lockup, or the death penalty on a state level. He has Cobra to thank for a lot of good turns in his life.
Should Over Kill notice Eddie at all, he might notice that the rather scrungy, skinny, tattoo-laden man bears a strong resemblance to a certain member of GI Joe...a striking resemblance, in fact.
Cobra Commander moves behind his desk and sits down. He watches Satan a moment, but if he's intimidated by the ninja's display, he doesn't let on. Allowing Satan to remain standing, he says in a low voice that doesn't travel outside the confines of the office, "Satan. I have sent Zartan to retrieve the Baroness from the Silent Castle in Transcarpathia, but I am unsure he is up to the task. I want you to travel there and neutralize Destro - he's been a thorn in my side for too long. Bring me his head, and there will be a substantial bonus for you. Am I making myself clear?" Cobra Commander leans forward on his desk, steepling his fingers before him in true super-villain style.
Satan blinks a couple of times and then bows again and abruptly jumps out the window. And I don't mean he's stops and opens the window, I mean he jumps THROUGH THE GLASS. Not much for conversation is this one, huh?
Over Kill tilts his head. "Forgive me Commander. I have been offlne far too long. Are we at war with Transcarpathia? Do I need to ready the BATs?"
Cobra Commander stands as Satan makes his dramatic exit. The Imperial Guard burst into his office, and the Commander hears Over Kill's question - damn that cyborg and his superhuman hearing. The Commander comes around his desk and out to the waiting room of the nondescript office building that is his current headquarters.
"We are not going to war," Cobra Commander explains to the BAT Commander. "If all goes well, Destro will be eliminated quietly, and Extensive Enterprises will absorb their assets. G.I. Joe helpfully removed Darklon from the table, so soon there will be no competition for our resources, and we can produce what we need in-house." Cobra Commander turns his head, looking over Deadline once he's finished addressing Over Kill.
Over Kill nods "ANd Trans-Carpathia will be ours. Very well." He says "It is time."
Unexpectedly, Satan's head pops up out of the shattered window. "Wait, did you want me to work with these guys? Because I don't work with..." he pauses for dramatic effect. And the pause continues. Wait, did he forget what he was going to say? This pause is going on so long it's getting awkward. He pulls his head slowly down out of sight. A moment later you can hear, "...amateurrrrsssssss!" screamed up by a guy who is apparently falling off the side of a building.
"Heh..." Deadline smiles slightly as Satan disappears out the window, down the building. "That's why it's good to have at least a few ninjas around."
Satan disappears into the shadows. Somehow, some way... the potted plant is back. Why let a good trick go to waste?
Cobra Commander looks at the window through which Satan disappeared, and shakes his head slightly. "I should have just send Storm Shadow," he mutters to himself, and then turns to look Deadline over again. "So. I hear you are a unique fellow," he says to Eddie Skeeve. "I have plenty of ninja," he allows. "But there seems to be very few of you. Come into my office." Cobra Commander turns and walks back into his now ventilated room. "You!" he points to Over Kill. "Get someone up here to fix this window!"
Out o the shadows, Billy emerges briefly. He has a look on his face that he was brought here against his wishes. That's the thing with Cobra Commander as a dad. He'll pick you up, but man, there are some strings with that deal.
Over Kill shakes his head a moment, as he sends an internal command. The BATs ibn the room go to fix the window. "At once, Commander!"
"Thanks," Deadline says, looking very reserved and unassuming...even calm, but that could be from whatever drug cocktail he's ingested so far today. "Yeah, I'm one of the portal guys. The portal got closed. So I kinda got stuck here. Zartan picked me an' my partner up when the Feds an' the RCMP were on our trail near the Alaska/Yukon border. We been workin' in the Everglades ever since. You need a medical doctor, I got training in that."
Cobra Commander leaves the door open this time, since his secrets seem to be out anyway. He glances up as Billy is ushered in, but of course his expression is unreadable. Turning back to Deadline, the Commander hisses, "I have plenty of medical doctors, but only one that shares a face with a G.I. Joe. What else do you feel you can bring to Cobra?" Cobra Commander goes back behind his desk and resumes his seat as the BATs work to repair his window. He gives the new potted plant no notice.
William looks at Deadline and his jaw tenses. He merely folds his arms and looks on. The slightest frown comes across his face. Years of fellowship with Storm Shadow has given Billy a slight snobbish disposition against anyone who isn't willing to submit their body and mind to total discipline. He can't tell for certain, but certain people exude that look that they would not be welcome at all in a monk-like dojo. This guy... right there - isn't one of those people.
Deadline doesn't come across as a very disciplined guy, but he talks a little bit better than he looks, which means there's some true intelligence behind the attitude and the tattoos. "Army field training. Specialized in a whole lotta weapons, you name it. Surgery skills, Rescue Ops...I mean, what are you lookin' for? I feel like I gotta lot to offer. I live hard, I play hard, I kill chumps," he tells Cobra Commander honestly. "An' your guy -- Zartan -- he got me an' my partner out of a bad place. I can respect that. So what I'm askin' is...what do you need done? Cause I return favors like that."
A faint curl/sneer comes across William's face, but the shadows thankfully mask that look. He says nothing, not wanting any part of this entire thing.
Cobra Commander hisses in pleasure. "Yes. You will be helpful on many levels. For now, simply support Zartan on his assignments for Cobra. I appreciate your loyalty, and I'll be sure to put you to good use - you seem more of a scalpel than a blunt instrument, which will be a rarity amongst Zartan's crew. If you wish, you may join him in Transcarpathia - going against Destro, he may have need of a skilled medic." Cobra Commander hisses in amusement at the situation.
"Thanks, Boss. I'll do what I can do." Eddie is all business, serious expression. He's just hoping that Geddy never gets called into this office...he really doesn't know how well that would go. Geddy marches to his own drum, and that's just how he operates. Eddie decides that he's just going to have to keep him satiated with books and marijuana.
Cobra Commander nods his head, and comes around the desk, placing his hand with possibly too much familiarity on Deadline's shoulder. "I know you will." He turns to the door, and waves his hand. "Billy. Come in here." He looks at Deadline. "Eddie, this is my son, Billy." Cobra Commander pauses a moment, and then asks with slight hesitation. "On your world... do I have a son, as well?"
Over Kill goes to help the BATs with the window. He mutters to one. "Human things." He shakes his head. He doesnt know why this isnt Cobra Commander model 2.0.
Billy emerges from the shadows. Not looking like he wants to patch things up with anyone. He eyes Deadline up and down, as if looking at a person he'd never admit in his sacred dojo. He gives Deadline a nod of acknowledgement.
Deadline grins faintly. "Oh yeah? Hey, nice to meet you, Billy!" He digs around in his back pocket, and pulls out a wallet. Shaking it open, he shows a number of pictures of various dirty-faced little moppets. "Here's mine. Four sons an' three daughters. Four, I mean. Yeah, there's eight. Kids are amazing." He doesn't seem particularly sad that he's never going to have a chance to see them again.
William nods, trying to withhold his anger about Deadline callously dismissing his own children. He doesn't make an effort to look at Deadline or Cobra Commander. "Kids are amazing. And don't worry, they have a remarkable resolve to transcend even the worst of environments."
Over Kill finishes overseeing the rebuild of the window. "Humans have inefficent reproduction. I do not understand why they do not have a proper factory and several generations at once."
William looks at Over Kill and says in a slightly condescending tone, "Humans require a tremendous effort of tutelage and care - they're not just something you 'pump out' and leave."
Over Kill shakes his head at William "Well that should definately be upgraded. Machines change monthly. How do they intend to keep up with them?"
"Thank you, Over Kill, but I prefer to reproduce the old fashioned way - even if the results aren't always what one would like," Cobra Commander replies with a glance towards Billy. "I've not always been the best father, myself," he admits, "but it's never too late to change all that. That's why I summoned you, Billy. I want you to see how things are done here. I want to make you part of the organization."
William says with a hint of panic in his voice, "My duties at the dojo easily exceed 70 hours a week when Storm Shadow is away."
"Oh yeah, I agree! Lots of care," Eddie says, seeming to agree with Billy's assessment. "Which is great, since your dad wants you in the family business! I mean, why give it to someone else, right? Keep it a tradition."
Over Kill nods "And an honor to serve Cobra. Why wouldn't you want that?"
William looks at Cobra Commander and says flatly, almost in a mantra, "I have no desire for power, or riches, or dominance. My only wish is to achieve a greater plane of enlightmentment than my current state."
"Your dojo is closed, Billy - or has it reopened and I haven't been informed? If it has, I'd find that very interesting." Cobra Commander doesn't sound hurt by his son's rejection. "Perhaps you should contact your old friends and see where they are meeting up these days. When Satan returns maybe I can send him along to pay them a little visit." The Commander doesn't bother to hide the threat in his voice.
William looks at Cobra Commander and says in a measured tone, "That's what's taking me so long. I'm rebuilding." He looks at Over Kill, then at Deadline. "Once I rebuild and reopen my dojo, we'll talk." He nods at Cobra Commander, hoping to negotiate. "Fair enough?"
Over Kill nods "Of you need assistance, I can let you borrow some BATs so you can see what real discipline is." and so they can put bugs in there.
William says, "No - " says almost instantaneously after Over Kill's reasonable offer for help.
Deadline glances over at...well, what IS Over Kill? He hasn't figured out whether that's a guy in a big metal suit, or a robot. He grins, then looks to Billy. Seems ole Will is not into what his father is trying to sell him. "Maybe you got schemes an' plans of your own, an' that's great, but...don't burn bridges." Not like he's ever done that.
"You should accept more of our help, Billy. Don't let your pride get in the way of your goals. I only wish to help you achieve your dreams." Cobra Commander changes to a more reasonable tone, trading threats for coercion by gentler means. "If you don't wish Over Kill's help, at least allow Tomax assist you with the finances. What is the point of all I've created if I can't use it to help my only son?"
William sighs and doesn't make eye contact with his father. He really needs money to get his dojo up. To help young, impressionable people overcome their horrible environments, and learn disclipline and self-control, in the ways Storm Shadow has taught him. However, it's harder to exude self-enlightenment when you're literally at the mercy of your father's purse strings. A bit of his bluster leaves him as he says "I'll think about it."
Over Kill is a little bit of both, actually. He takes a deep breath which is odd from the mostly mechanical being. "As you wish." He comments, focusing his gaze on Deadline.
"Good!" Cobra Commander exclaims, clapping his gloved hands together.
"Scuse me," Eddie says to Over Kill, unable to contain his curiosity any longer, "But what are you? I mean, are you a guy in a suit? Or a robot?"
"Are you building out here in California?" Cobra Commander pries, as if he doesn't have spies watching his son at all times. "Perhaps you should reopen Storm Shadow's dojo in San Francisco. It's still standing, and seems to be pretty well maintained for a building that theoretically stands empty..." Cobra Commander sound suspicious, but then again, Cobra Commander always sounds suspicious.
Over Kill looks at Eddie, his pupil-less optic like eyes focusing on him for a while. "I am Over Kill. Commander of the BATs. Have you never seen a cyborg before?" he asks.
William 's eye widen in hope. "You would let me, father?"
"Well...yeah and no," Eddie admits to Over Kill, wide-eyed in amazement. "I hadda teammate, named Lockdown, who was pretty cybered up, but nothin' like you. I mean, if I had to ask...let's just say you're the most metal of the cyborgs that I ever seen."
Over Kill smiles under his mask, making his almost zombie-like face scrunch a bit. "Thank you. Would you like to see more up close? Behold the future of the human race."
"Of course, Billy. Why don't I have a driver bring you out there tonight? You can look over the place, and just let us know what it needs. I'm sure we can supply you with anything you require to get the place up and running again, and you can start giving back to the community that supported you when you were injured. Cobra isn't all bad, Billy. Let us help you." The Commander's voice is smooth and persuasive.
William gives a skeptical look at Cobra Commander. "No strings attached?"
The medical doctor within the junkie is fascinated. "Sure, I'd love to see what kinda wetware you use," Eddie tells Over Kill. "Now, I never installed the stuff, understand, that's up to the cyberdocs. But it's an interesting branch of medicine for sure."
Over Kill nods "So look but don't touch. Gotcha. I can show you the face." he offers, taking off that weird bandana that covers.. oh god! That face! Skin over metal, the flesh pulled tight against a bald head and the bottom half of his face. UGH. the jaw is..missing. Well the skin is. The rest is 100 percent mechanical. "Yes, William. It is inevitable you know. We are the future. And there is no better one."
"No strings attached, Billy," Cobra Commander lies. "I just want to help. Maybe I can visit he dojo myself, if you invite me - but only if you invite me. Otherwise, I'll stay out of it. I want to be part of your life, Billy, but that doesn't mean trying to control you," he lies. "I just want to try to establish the best father/son relationship we can considering our... difficult circumstances." He reaches out with a paternal pat toward Billy's shoulder, trying to keep his focus away from the freak show in his waiting room.
William blanches in disgust at Over Kill's... show. But like a 'Faces of Death' video, you just can't turn away. But after Cobra Commander's pitch, he refocuses his attention on Cobra Commander. He has given him exactly what he wants. With no strings. And he's been remarkably civil. Suppose it's time to meet him halfway. William nods in acknowledgement and weakly says "Thanks. I appreciate it."
Of course, Dr. Skeeve is not disgusted at all by Over Kill's mods. It's just amazing to him. "Nice. You got any more modification plans? You gonna go for a full skull replacement eventually, I mean...you're pretty into this cyber-life. Just wonderin' how far you wanna take this."
Over Kill smiles. Something that looks even more disgusting with the mask off. "One day. There are human elements that assist with the Over Kill project. It has been tried many ways. Full android, partial, synthoid, full human, complete machine. I am the seventh iteration from what I understand. The combination of synthetic wetware and cybernetics not only helps with the BAT project but helps with further cybernetic projects in cobra's future. Imagine if all of the troops could one day be like this. No disease, no need to eat or sleep or do some of the more disgusting human needs. One full efficient network under the Commander." he looks at the BATs working "They are perfect beings are they not? No disloyalty no outside needs.." no humanity. "I can only strive for half that perfection."
"No problem, Billy," Cobra Commander says, hand on Billy's shoulder. "I'm just glad to be able to help." He turns to observe the freak show in his waiting room, but his face is masked and his body language gives nothing away. "Perhaps you'd better go sooner than later," he allows. "I will call a driver to pick you up and bring you to Storm Shadow's old dojo in San Francisco." He lets go of Billy's shoulder and moves back around behind his desk, pushing a button beneath it and speaking into a small microphone built into the desktop.
William frowns as he hears Over Kill's sales pitch. More human than human. He looks over at Over Kill and sighs "I think I've heard enough today." He nods dismissively at Deadline. "Nice meeting you."
Eddie is perhaps not sold on the idea of going full cyber, but he can understand the appeal of not having to get junk-sick, or feel the pain of a bullet trapped inside a limb. "I like the way you think, man. I think you an' me are gonna get along well." As William heads out, his grin is back in place. "Nice to meet you! Good luck with the dojo!"
Over Kill puts his mask b ack on "I hope so too." He tilts his head and offers a salute. "Nice to meet you as well son of the commander. May your dojo bring you enlightment."
William looks at Over Kill and sighs, giving a resigned nod. "Thank you... it is my hope that I can help out a lot of lost souls."
Over Kill isnt really sure what a Dojo is but hey if it helps William find Cobra so be it. "Yes. There are many out there that do not know their true design. As Cobras. We shall enlighten them."
William shakes his head adamantly "No! No! I have no desire for this dojo to become a recruiting beacon for Cobra. It's purpose is pure! It's not to recruit members into a global syndicate!" William looks at Cobra Commander and almost pleads "Promise me it won't be used for a recruiting tool!"
Over Kill looks lost "What is more pure then that?"
William practically spits out "A person's own damn journey! We're not making a goddamn pitch to these people!"
Over Kill nods "Yes. A person's journey to Cobra. I understand!"
Deadline heads over to a window, opens it ever-so-slightly, then lights up a cigarette and smokes it while watching Billy melt down over the ethics of having his father meddle in his personal affairs. The cigarette gets dangled out the window, ashes spilling down on the people walking below.
William looks at Over Kill and points an accusatory finger at him. "I will say this only once ... No Cobra Recruitment."
Over Kill nods "Confirmed." He says. Until the dojo gets TOO successful, then maybe an additional instructor or 2 would need to be hired... and then some possible side tutoring... Over Kill pauses "Though I hate to ask the question hanging in the air. What is a dojo?" Over Kill adds "Nevermind I'll google it." what he doesnt have a laptop or anything.
William says in a canned response, "It is a safe space where people can go to meditate, a haven from the chaos and technobabble of the outside world, a place where people of similar positions in life can go to achieve mental and physical perfection."
Over Kill tilts his head as he gets search results "A room in which martial arts such as judo is practiced. Ahh. A training facility. An excellant idea. Mental and physical perfection. Seems like we have similar ideas only yours are more wetware based ....pardon. More human based, where mine is more mechanical. There is no need to worry about machines tainting perfection. We are just a shortcut to it."
William says with a tone of pity at Over Kill. "Our goal has never been to reach perfection, because it's impossible. It is the journey that matters."
Over Kill tilts his head at an almost 90 degree angle in confusion. Doesn't he have a neck? He stares at William and blinks his eyes. "A journey without a destination?" he says as if the concept is foreign to him.
"Billy, Billy, Billy - you are in control of your own facility. Only you can guide those who come to you for direction and support. I would never interfere in your affairs to turn your school into some sort of recruitment tool." A place to sort out WHO should be recruited outside the school, sure, but Cobra Commander doesn't mention that. "Your dojo is yours to control. I hope you can someday see why I do what I do, but I can't force that on you. You have to come to that truth yourself."
William nods resolutely to Over Kill, "Exactly." He nods to Cobra Commander. "Thank you again..." And despite the front that he originally brought, he's now back into a place where he's utterly dependent on Cobra Commander for his well-being. "May I be excused, father?"
Deadline is in chill mode, near the window, smoking. He hasn't spoken a peep for a while. It's entirely possible there's more components than tobacco in his rolled-up cig.
Over Kill nods "Ahh yes. When it is complete I'd like to see that. Sounds fascinating." He then heas over to stand by the window with Deadline and focus that zombie stare on someone new.
"Of course, Billy," Cobra Commander replies soothingly. "The car will be waiting for you downstairs." Cobra Commander looks over to see if the BATs have fixed the window or just bolloxed up the whole job, and then either way goes to have a seat behind his desk. "The rest of you are dismissed. Over Kill, see to Rancho Corba's security. Deadline, you may return to the Dreadnoks for now." Cobra Commander returns to his work, protected securely by his Imperial Guard.
Over Kill nods "Confirmed." he starts to order BATs around on the network, standing silently as they move to protect the Rancho.