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Jolt City # 19, "The Little League of Doom!" (June 2010, Tom Russell) is the eighty-fourth Eightfold publication. It pits Martin Rock (the second Green Knight) and Derek Mason (Blue Boxer) against a murderous little league softball team, the Proctor Products Fighting Badgers, whom have all become endowed with Doc-Class powers: super-strength, flight, invulnerability, increased speed, and destructive vision powers.

Said powers were contained within an alien artifact that was stolen from Dr. Fay's lab by Hotspur, an artificial intelligence driven mad by the works of William Shakespeare and inhabitating a gigantic insect-shaped robot body. Green Knight and Blue Boxer manage to defeat Hotspur, but not before the artifact is activated, flooding a young boy, Ralph Zurich, with its incredible power. Ralph, hospitalized and unaware of his newfound abilities, unwittingly bequeaths the majority of his power to his eight little league teammates. The team is then employed by its sponsor, J. Donald Proctor, to destroy an expensive Cradle Industries construction site.

Realizing that this can only be the work of Doc-Classers, and finding it unlikely that it was just a case of industrial sabotage (which, ironically, it was), Martin and Derek figure that Anders Cradle himself might be targeted. Anders, still deeply shaken by having killed the Balloonist in self-defense, has become even more of a recluse, preferring to stay inside his heavily-guarded mansion. When Martin warns Anders that his defenses, and even Martin's own best efforts, would be for naught against a group of Doc-Classers, things become heated; Anders uses a racial slur against Martin, and reveals that he knew about Martin's affair with his mother.

It occurs to the alpha male of the little league team, Jack, that at their power level, none of their actions have consequences. There is, indeed, no need to do jobs secretly for money-- anything they want, they can just take it. The coach, who had been their contact to J. Donald Proctor, tries to talk sense into Jack; Jack responds by ripping the coach's head off. He then leads the other seven boys on a rampage of murder, rape, and wanton destruction.

None of this sits well with the weakest of the boys, Fish. He tries to stand up to Jack and to explain that what he and the other boys are doing is wrong, but is repeatedly cowed by the very real threat of his own violent death at their hands. He instead remains an impotent observer.

Reports of their rampage spread like wildfire, though their identities and number remain unknown. Martin, knowing he's out of his league, employs his allies Dani Handler and Brian Clipper (the second Darkhorse) to contact as many other heroes as they can and ask for their help. But, either because they fear for their own safety or because they've been snubbed by the sometimes anti-social Green Knight in the past, they all refuse. Even the President refuses the aid of the National Guard.

Martin catches up to the eight boys. Knowing that no one is coming, and knowing that there's no way to stop them, he resolves to try anyway. Dani tries to talk him out of it via the comm-link, but fails. Martin tells her he loves her, and figuring that he is about to die, he rushes in.

Fish reacts without thinking, grabbing Martin's left wrist and pulverizing all the bones within it. Martin is knocked out cold. His life is only spared after Fish and another boy ask Jack not to kill him.

Martin is taken into the hospital, and Dani is informed that his hand will have to be amputated. She calls Martin's other lover, Pam Bierce, and they discuss what Martin has done-- Dani thinks it was brave, while Pam thinks it was stupid and suicidal. While Martin is still in surgery, Blue Boxer is admitted to the hospital with second-degree burns on his hands. In talking with Pam, he has an epiphany regarding the nature of the little league team's powers: i.e., that Ralph controls the flow of the powers, and that the finite power amount has been divided equally among the nine boys. Derek meets up with Dr. Fay, and they convince Ralph to divide the power among every living thing, thus instantly robbing the boys of their powers. Inadvertently, Derek may have revealed Martin's secret identity to Dr. Fay.

When he loses his powers, a steel girder crushes Fish's legs, paralyzing him for life. He and the other seven boys (Ralph not having been a party to their actions) are arrested. Jack and the other boys, encouraged by J. Donald Proctor (who wishes, for obvious reasons, to keep his criminal involvement with the team a secret), claim that Fish had been the ring-leader all along. District Attorney Blake Foster and ADA Tad Dmowski seek the maximum penalty against Fish-- life without parole-- while ensuring none of the other boys serve more than ten years.

Criticizing the failure of Dani Handler's Four-Colour Liason Office to secure help for the Green Knight and Blue Boxer, city councilman Carlos Canton announces his candidacy for mayor in the autumn election. Mayor Bernie Bates demands that Dani fall on her sword; she resigns from her post.

Martin deals with the loss of his hand the way he often deals with things: that is, but not dealing with them. Moody and withdrawn, he seeks solace in Pam's bed but finds the normally game younger woman unresponsive, due in large part to his prosthetic. Dani is more accepting of it, and as they make love, together the two of them discuss their uncertain futures.

First-AppsEdit

Little League of Doom;

Kickflip Kingpin;

Rivetrix;

Rainshade;

Hotspur;

Tad Dmowski.

LinksEdit

Jolt City # 19, PT. 1

Jolt City # 19, PT. 2

Jolt City # 19, PT. 3

FOLLOWS CHRONOLOGY FOLLOWED BY
My Father's Son 01 (83) 8FOLD MASTER LIST Journey Into 13 (85)
Jolt City 18 Jolt City Jolt City 20

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