GODLING # 36: TENGU
by J. Vandersteen
– GODLING – THE ONE MAN PANTHEON: TENGU
Ninjoid runs towards Godling, laser-katana in hand. “I will need to defeat you.”
“Go ahead and try,” Godling, The One Man Pantheon and Olympian Prophet says.
The katana swooshes over Godling’s head who manages to duck just in time, countering with a roundhouse kick in Ninjoid’s stomach as he channels the fighting skills of Ares, God of War.
Unfortunately, the kicks lack the power to harm Ninjoid’s metal. The robotic ninja chops Godling in the neck with his right hand. Godling falls down.
Ninjoid lifts his sword above his head, ready to strike down at the One Man Pantheon, lying on the ground.
“Kill him!” Professor Tsuraya yells.
“I don’t think so,” Godling says and gets up on his knees, chanelling the strength of Heracles as he grips Ninjoid’s wrist, preventing the katana from hitting him. With his free hand he punches Ninjoid so hard the dents the robot’s face. He follows up with a big roundhouse punch that sends Ninjoid flying through the lab.
Ninjoid crashes into the wall, badly damaging some fancy looking monitors, sparks flying.
Professor Tsuraya curses in Japanese, not happy about the destruction of his equipment. “Stop that round-eyed bastard!”
Ninjoid slowly gets up from the floor and looks at Tsuraya. “Your behaviour does not compute. It is extremely irregular and beyond normal parameters.”
“You are wrecking my lab. What would you expect?” Tsuraya says. “Now stop Godling!”
“Affirmative,” Ninjoid says and throws laser throwing stars at the hero. Using the speed of Hermes Godling manages to evade them.
Ninjoid runs straight at Godling and jumps up, executing a flying kick. Godling catches him in mid-air and throws him, with Heracles strength right into Tsuraya.
Tsuraya falls, Ninjoid on top of him. As Ninjoid gets up he looks at his master who seems to… change?
New Troy PD, interrogation room. Wade Hudson paces around the room, hands behind his back.
“How long are you going to keep me here?” he asks.
Darlene King enters the room, carrying a pizza box. “Until Godling tells us what’s been going on with you and that armor of yours. I’m sorry, but that really sounds like the most sensible thing to do.”
Wade sighs. “Maybe. But I swear I feel pretty calm already. Whatever influence that armor had over me according to you guys it seems to be wearing off.”
“That’s good news. Have some pizza now,” Darlene says and opens the box.
Wade picks up a slice of pizza from the box. “Will you join me?”
“I try to cut down on pizza. Goes right through my thighs.”
Wade smiles. “Your thighs seem to be just all right.”
On the other side of a one way window Monica and Janson are standing.
“Is he flirting with her?” Monica asks Janson.
“Don’t worry about it. That’s just Wade,” Janson tells Monica. “Goes naturally with him. Guess he still fancies himself god’s gift to women. I’m glad Quentin isn’t like that… Oh… Sorry! I didn’t mean anything by that. Wade is generally a nice guy. And strong and handsome. Quite a catch. Oh, sorry… I didn’t mean I fancy him or anything like that. I mean… Maybe I should just shut up.”
“I know what you mean, don’t worry,” Monica says, a hand on Janson’s shoulder. She thinks, I really know what you mean…
Professor Tsuraya, spread-eagled on the floor is changing slowly from a human being into a grey-skinned demonic looking thing with pointy ears, red eyes and a tail but also a birdlike beak and wings.
“What the Hades?” Godling says.
“A shape-changer? According to my database a tengu!” Ninjoid says.
“Looks like we have our explanation of why your master would be involved with villainous activities,” Godling says.
The tengu gets up. “Damn you for breaking my concentration and having me show my true form!”
“And an ugly one it is,” Godling says. “Where is the real professor?”
“Dead of course! I broke his neck like a twig. And I will do the same to you!” the tengu says.
“I’d like to see you try,” Godling says, arms crossed, posing in true macho superhero style.
“I am programmed to avenge my master’s death,” Ninjoid says and slices the air with this laser-katana as a demonstration.
“Come on then. I have a bone to pick with both of you. I don’t like it when my plans get thwarted. Wade Hudson was the ideal testperson to see what the professor’s technology could do to influence the minds of men. If that had worked out I would’ve inserted that technology in computer, cell phones, and all kinds of gadgets… Thus turning all humans in aggressive barbarians and soon have the entire world at war.”
“Interesting plan. Too bad for you that’s not going to happen,” Godling says and he sprints towards the tengu, fist raised.
The tengu flies up, showing birdlike claws at his feet, trying to dig him into Godling’s flesh. He is quicker than Godling thought and indeed, the claws strike his flesh, leaving bloody scratches.
“Aargh… That hurt,” Godling says, his hand on the worst scratch.
“Evil monster, you will be terminated!” Ninjoid says and slashes at the tengu with his laser-katana. Some feathers come flying from the tengu’s wings.
The tengu produces a katana from his back and slashes back at Ninjoid. The robot catches the katana on his wristbands and kicks the tengu in the stomach. The tengu loses balance and falls on the floor.
He gets back on his feet, but Ninjoid immediately hits him with two kicks and a punch in the beak. The tengu stumbles a few steps back, then changes into a fiercesome looking tiger. He roars and jumps at Ninjoid. Ninjoid falls flat on his back, the tiger on top of him, snarling.
Godling grabs the tiger by the tail and swings it above his head. In the air the tiger changes back into the tengu-form, punching at Godling. Godling lets go of the tengu and the demonic creature is sent flying through the lab, crashing into a machine.
Godling throws a lightning bolt at the tengu, which turns out to be enough to knock out the demon. He falls down and as soon as he hits the ground turns to smoke. The smoke dissipates, traveling out of the lab through the window.
“Looks like we defeated him,” Godling tells Ninjoid.
“Yes. So it seems. Sorry for battling you before,” Ninjoid says.
Godling shakes the robot’s hand. “No problem. This demon was pretty convincing as a human I guess. Do you think we’ve seen the last of him?”
“I lack the data to confirm or deny. In case he returns I will be ready. I still have to avenge my master.”
“Yeah. I’m sorry about his death.”
“I lack any real human feelings. No need to be sorry. I am programmed to continue my work as Japan’s protector, even without my master. I will continue that work to the best of my programmed abilities.”
“Good for you,” Godling says.
“First task is to find the body of my master.”
“No need. I believe you have people waiting at home that need more information about the armor and its origins.”
“Guess you’re right. Thanks!”
And Godling speeds off with the speed of Hermes.
NEXT ISSUE: Aftermaths and a new villain