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The Second-to-the-Last Battle

by on July 16, 2015

“I just hate existential fights with myself,” Madeleine thought, as she pummeled her evil possessed twin with all her might and main. Unfortunately, since Eviler Madeleine had exactly the same flying-brick flame-producing powers as her, Eviler Madeleine had a good deal of might and main in her own right. Thus the two Madeleines with their respective mights and mains meleed away at each other, for many long minutes.

After a while, a little voice in the back of Madeleine’s mind began to wonder how this would end. She hadn’t given it much thought, beyond the immediate concern of trying to snap-kick her evil self clear into next Tuesday. Now she wondered, in a distant sort of way, as Eviler Madeleine unleashed a series of fireballs at her. By the terms of the deal, if she defeated her evil twin, she would escape from hell. But the whole point of her descent into hell in the first place had been to rescue her evil twin so she could get back out and save reality. Gaseous Girl couldn’t leave hell without her evil self. But, in order to leave, she had to defeat her evil self, and the way this fight was going, it looked to be turning lethal fast. That meant only one of them would walk away. She wondered. Had she been wrong? Had she been blind? Had she-

“You know what?” Madeleine said. “This isn’t a Natalie Merchant song.”  And she pitched back into it. A second little voice piped up in her mind, one that had stuck with her from all the lawyer-type shows she had watched. What had been the devil’s exact words?  Inspiration broke upon her mind like a sunburst. She ducked suddenly, and aimed a sudden snap-kick combined with a burst of burped flame at Eviler Madeleine’s boots. Eviler Madeleine was, momentarily, caught off guard. She stumbled and fell, hitting the ground hard. Being a flying brick, and fairly durable if not nigh-invulnerable, she wasn’t hurt at all. Eviler Madeleine, howling in rage, started to bound up again.

“Ah,” Madeleine said. “You’re not standing. I win.”

“What?” said Eviler Madeleine. “You haven’t won. I have barely begun fighting!”

“Yeah, sure, John Paul Jones. Except that the exact terms of the deal was ‘whoever’s left standing’. You’re not standing anymore. So, I win. Now, dispossess my evil twin and we’ll be going. It was fun.”

Eviler Madeleine smiled. “Well played. Except that I’m the Big Bad. You know what that means?”


“I was never going to abide by the deal anyway.”

She whistled. Across the way, the armies of hell surged forward, into and across the river Acheron. Madeleine signed. “Not again…”

Incidentally, and completely off-topic, I am now on Twitter. I am @Indiana_Michael. And so we enter into a new era, where lion and hyena come together, in a great and glorious future! (not really. But I like the quote and use it where I can.)

  1. Sneaky devil! Of course, he makes a fair point. Evil is kinda what he does best. Too bad lion and hyena aren’t really coming together – that would be something to behold. But it’s great to hear that you’re on Twitter! 🙂

    • I’d been thinking about it for a while, but finally decided to take the plunge. 🙂

  2. Great battle scenes. I loved that. I like the way you went in the classical direction by finding a loophole in a deal with the Devil. Unfortunately, the Devil isn’t playing by his own rules. The Dirty Master of Lies! A great and fun story as always! 🙂

    • Thanks! It’s tricky to write superhero battle scenes, I think, because one is used to seeing this stuff on the big screen. I’m glad it worked. 🙂

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