This is part 2 of a short story I wrote based on one of the many campaigns I played with my old gaming group in the SF Bay Area. Part 1 can be found here.
Showdown Over San Mateo
San Mateo is not known for its high-rises, so the cell of Bone Corps quislings and thralls based in that city had to make do with the tallest building available to them: the Townhouse Plaza.
Eyewitness accounts estimate the initial size of the expanding gate at fifty feet in diameter. It hovered several meters above the Townhouse Plaza penthouse, and thus was only accessible to heroes with flight capabilities.
At the time, San Mateo had only two such heroes. One was the mysterious Silent Shrike, and, of course, the Avatar of the Omega Bands and Champion of the Bay Area: Omega Man. But despite the steel-shattering strength of Omega Man, and the blinding speed of Silent Shrike, undead atrocities that escaped their attentions managed to make it to street level.
A decade later, it was Silent Shrike revealed in an interview that this was part of a plan. Each of them had fought a member of the Bones Corps before and suspected that the slavering undead hordes accompanying each Bone Corpseman were meant to attract metahuman attention and opposition for an insidious reason. As the laconic Braumeister succinctly put it: “They become stronger when they’re outnumbered.”
When the Bone Corpseman finally appeared, Silent Shrike fled the scene, allowing Omega Man to easily dispatch their undead foe.
Then the reserve sprang into action. Twin streams of high-caliber rapid-fire erupted from opposite sides of the building – courtesy of the deputized man-machine, David Raphael Vega, and the shadowy operative, Alexandra Raven – thinned the numbers of escaping undead vermin. Freddy Killowatt burst onto the scene and, in an explosion of sinuous scintilla, incinerated every foul beast in a two kilometer area before evaporating into a cloud of sparks. From atop a pillar of fire, Jesse Burning Mountain sent spirits of flame spiraling into the Bone Corps gate, turning several incoming waves of undead hordes to ash.
It was then that Krusader appeared, fired both grappling hook chains from his gauntlets and, with a howl of fury, catapulted himself into the Bone Corps gate.
Bound by some unspoken agreement, most of the heroes – led by Omega Man – followed Krusader through the gate. Only Silent Shrike, whose bionic wings had been damaged in the battle remained behind.
According to one Rebecca Smith, in a letter to the editor of the San Francisco Chronicle with no return address, the Bone Corps gate did not simply evaporate after the heroes disappeared into it: “It had to be closed from this end, so I closed it. They will have to find another way home.”
Of course, not all of them did.