Zapping Eagle Archer presented a problem. I briefly considered a villainous career, but this body had all the fighting power of a drunk sidekick. Plus I’d resolved never to fight a superteam by myself. Again. On the plus side this body was designed for maintenance and had some basic cleaning tools. On the minus side the oily gunk on my limbs proved preternaturally resistant. Thwarted, I opted to shave Eagle Archer. It was better, but still unpleasant. Some of that was the odd burning smell coming from his insect wings.
I looked for the base’s communicator planning to get help. Thumbing the Radio Shack button set up a screech, but seemed to work. “Hey…anyone…there’s been an accident in…the room that Archer was in…” I tried to make my voice as soothing as possible.
“GROBDILEHUIKsqeeee” came an immediate response. I oriented myself—I was still angry but really wanted to know who was in charge here. A man threw open the door within seconds. I assumed a teleporter, but the size of the base meant that most rooms were seconds away from each other. Except the garage. And the portal lab. And the showers.
I had a mixed impression of this first member of the team. He’d chosen a distinct outfit for crime fighting: a dark-blue suit with a lime colored shirt. He appeared to be aiming for the all-important bouncer demographic. I was surprised he didn’t wear a mask– most human looking heroes I know keep a secret identity. Then he opened his mouth.
“WHAT’S GOING ON? IS EVERYONE OK?” his voiced boomed across the room.
I took a guess. “um…yes…Yes Man? There was a little electrical short when Eagle Archer…”
“That’s what I meant, when he…she activated me. Some kind of static build up from…cleaning. But Archer seems OK, waking up any time now.” I gently nudged her head with my shoe. “Looks like it burned off that beard as well…”
“OK THEN! GOOD TO HAVE YOU ABOARD…UM…” His brow super-furrowed trying to think of my name. I had the feeling this was a common facial expression for him.
“…Robot Zero, and you’re standing next to me. I can hear you fine.” He’d moved to beside me—right beside me. Breath fogging my mirrored finish next to me. The scent of his hair oil began to play havoc with my sensors. A side note– my creator had decided that the key to human empathy was scent awareness, since smell is so tightly linked to memory. So I smell. A lot. Can’t track with it, can’t do a comprehensive analysis of it, but boy I can tell you which villain lacks hygiene skills.
“WHAT?” That furrowed brow again.
“You don’t have to shout, my auditory systems are A-O-K…” I tried unsuccessfully to lean back away from him; he just moved in closer.
“I’M NOT SHOUTING.”
“Okaaaay. My mistake—must need some recalibration. Anyway, maybe you could show me around. I’d like to see if I could use a phone or something to call…” This would explain the lack of secret identity.
“GREAT. I’LL SHOW YOU THE KITCHEN. WE OUGHT TO GET YOU CLEANED UP THOUGH.” He poked at the black gunk on my arm with a forefinger.
I took a step back, not easy in what was apparently their trophy case/storage room/flea market. “Kitchen? Um…I appreciate your interest in my cleanliness, but why the kitchen?.”
“SO YOU CAN MAKE ME A SANDWICH.” He flashed his perfect pearly whites.
Yes Man proved as susceptible to a quick taser to the stomach as Chrysalis Archer.