BLINDED BY THE LIGHT
by Arkhaine -- firstname.lastname@example.org
Disclaimer: Iron Lantern, Dark Claw, Super-Soldier, Speed Demon, and the
Amalgam universe are all copywright of DC Comics and Marvel Characters,
Inc. Any similarities to pre-existing trademark Amalgam characers and
the ones described within are purely coincidental. This work contains
mild profanity and descriptions of violence and graphic material.
Discretion is advised.
//Sub-designate Green Cyclops identified! Terminate immediately!//
"Give it your best shot, tin man."
There is always room for improvement, no matter how far technology
progresses. Case in point: despite being designed solely for combat,
crafted from state-of-the-art technology and armed with enough firepower
to level a small city, the organic robot's reflexes were still not quick
enough to bring its weapons to bear on its target -- not quick enough to
stop the beam of emerald force that hammered through the titanium
breastplate, obliterating the bio-synthetic heart and leaving a hole a
large dog could jump through.
Alan Summers brushed a strand of blond-white hair from his face as
the monstrosity collapsed before him. Although he felt remorse for
whatever creature had lost its life to create the killing machine, all
that remained was an unholy marriage of flesh and circuitry. Such could
be destroyed without regret -- indeed, he felt better about doing so.
Disposing of the abused remains might grant the departed spirit that
much more peace.
Green light flickered as Summers adjusted the alien visor,
refocusing it until the patterns of energy once more swam visible to the
naked eye. He was quick to catch one particular signature, and he
followed it down the now-empty corridor, his heels clacking on the
As he progressed, he could not help thinking about the past events
that had earned him this present state. The son of a pilot, both he and
his brother had been forced to jump from a plane that a blast of emerald
energy had rendered inoperative. Their parents had not survived the
crash. It was not until much later that he learned the blast of energy
had come from the life-force of a dying alien.
Whatever the cause, the strange power triggered a latent mutation
hidden within his genes. His cells began producing the alien energy,
building up a continual charge. His body had become a living battery of
destructive power, release found through his eyes in the form of twin
beams of emerald death. It was only later, with the aid of an Oan visor
giving to him by another alien, that he learned how to control that
//Sub-designate Green Cyclops, halt! You are to be terminated!//
Two more technorganics approached him, one huge and hulking, the
other small and wiry. Blades bristled from every inch of the smaller
one, while cannons mounted on the larger one's plated body swiveled to
bear on him.
"Sure," Summers said dryly. "I'll just wait right here." God,
you'd think some of these things had some kind of common sense
programmed into them? He supposed the fact that they didn't reflected
more on their master.
Emerald light glowed again, but found shape as something other than
a beam of force this time. A spiked ball filled the room, coalescing
from the gleaming visor to roll down the corridor with the velocity of a
The larger technorg fired its proton cannons, obliterating the
energy construct. The smoke cleared, revealing -- an empty corridor.
//Unit 2514, scan for designate Summers!// the larger technorg
commanded. The smaller one merely giggled, drooling a steady stream
down its chin, its mind destroyed by the genetic tampering and
cybernetic implants. Nostrils flared at it took in the surrounding air
-- and with a triumphant, screaming laugh, blade-fingers darted out,
shearing through flesh and cloth.
"Arrgh!" Green Cyclops wavered into existance, clutching at his
side as he fell against the wall. Blood streamed through the tears in
his green and gold uniform, flowing much too heavily. Pain seized and
tore at his side, ripping with the frenzy of a rabid tiger, and he felt
his entire right side give out, spilling him on the floor. Summers
pushed it all from his mind as the smaller technorg howled with
laughter, leaping at the fallen man with its blades outstretched.
The emerald lens gleamed once more, sending an array of swords and
spears hurling through the space between them, catching the technorg in
mid-air and pinning it to the far wall, stopping it in mid-laugh. Which
left the larger unit --
Summers barely had enough time to erect the solid energy shield
before the missles reached their target. The barrier buckled under the
force of the explosion, but held.
//Resistance is pointless, designate Summers. Surrender.// Lasers
flicked out through the air, sighting on his chest, his head, his
stomach as the next salvo prepared to launch.
"You tinheads should know me better by now," Green Cyclops returned
as he raised a hand, refocusing his visor. This time, the emerald force
beam sprang forth once again, taking the larger robot's head off.
The threat gone, pain returned with a vengeance, tearing ravenously
at his body and forcing a cry from his throat. His teeth clenched, he
slowly removed his hand from his side, gasping as the torn cloth pulled
at the wounds. Three ragged, gaping slashes showed hints of bone
through the shredded muscles, blood pooling on the floor.
He would have to move quickly; he was already weakening from loss
of blood. Soon, he would lose the ability to concentrate, and then he
would die for sure. A shaking, bloodstained hand shifted the visor's
focus to a lesser intensity. Knowing his opponent, the technorg's
blades had probably been coated with some sort of debilitating virus.
It was with this in mind that he trained the disinfecting field over his
side, the agony of the wounds masking the antiseptic sting. A stronger
intensity amplified the green glow, and he watched with satisfaction as
the torn muscle and flesh slowly drew itself together, leaving not so
much as a scar. Finally, the tears in the uniform drew together,
mending themselves as the bloodstains vanished.
*Always have to keep up appearances,* he thought to himself as he
sank exhaustedly against the wall. He was satisfied with the results --
he had learned long ago how to master his power. It was a matter of
forcing imagination and willpower to work in concert, and within the
confines dictated by the energy reserves within his body. Most of the
time, however, those reserves seemed limitless. It was as though he
could do anything he truly set his mind to -- with a few exceptions.
For some odd reason, the raw energy was unable to affect a very specific
type of organic compound -- wood. Even curiouser, when focused through
the alien visor, the energy pattern shifted to adopt a new vulnerability
-- that of the color yellow. Still, he had managed to work his way
around both, and had gained mastery over wielding the emerald energy.
He sighed, shutting his eyes as he reflected on his life. As far
as he could remember, all he had wanted was a normal life, with a wife
and children. Not that that had stopped him from shouldering the
responsibilities that were called for, but the yearning was still
there. His life had been as far from normal as he could remember -- his
best friend possessed by a living embodiement of the emerald force, and
corrupted by that force to become the Dark Parralax. Dark Claw, a
trusted ally, almost killed when the metal was stripped from his body,
an armored psychopath taking his place. He had even had a visit from
his son, a man called Beacon who had crossed time to describe the
nightmare of an apocalyptic future.
And now, things had come full circle. Things were ending where
they had begun; with the man who had been monitoring and manipulating
him all his life.
Green Cyclops slowly rose to his feet. He still felt weak, both
from the pain and the blood loss. And he had been expending large
amounts of the green energy even before he arrived. His reserves were
not drained yet, not even close, but he had become aware of a limit to
his energy, one of the first warning signs of depletion.
Shrugging off the exhaustion, he focused on the energy signature
once more, and followed it until he met up with a blank wall. A
skeletal fist formed from the air, smashing through the metal with
"I've come for *you*, Sinestro!" Summers snarled as he stepped
through the wreckage.
"That's *Mister* Sinestro to you," the figure within replied
calmly, turning to face his uninvited guest. Metallic blue armor
covered his form, a shredded cape trailing behind him as he walked.
Pinkish skin gave his features a malevolent hue, as did the blank-white
eyes that gleamed without any sign of pupil or iris. The villain had
been the result of a cloning experiment involving a long-time archenemy
of the late Iron Lantern, and the scientifically-minded result had set
his efforts to scouring the galaxy in his quest to create the perfect
lifeform. He had also been controlling Summers' life since birth,
predicting the acquisition of the emerald power and seeking to harness
it for his own purposes.
"Your sick little games come to an end right now, butcher," Green
Cyclops declared, green fire finding focus in a juggernaut-beam of
force. The ray, however, was stopped by an energy field that sprang up
around the geneticist.
"Your emerald blasts may indeed be lethal to me," Mister Sinestro
purred, "but they're useless as long as I'm protected from this yellow
energy force field. At best, you'll make a mess of my laboratory." The
"laboratory" bore closer resemblance to a coroner's office -- cadavers
in various stages of dissection lay strapped to metal tables in the
chilled room, while a computer setup vied for space against one wall
with a chemical rack.
"You're forgetting something, Sinestro," Cyclops returned, touching
his visor. "All I have to do is take this off, and that yellow field
won't be able to stop me. And I doubt you have any wood on you in the
middle of all this plastic and steel."
"Indeed not," Sinestro agreed. "But you may want to keep that
piece of Oan eyewear on for the moment. You'll need all the focus you
can get. You see, I'd like to introduce you -- to Weapon X."
A demonic-looking figure stepped from the shadows, eyeing Summers
with a look of pure malice. The emaciated frame did nothing to hide the
compact strength beneath the greyish skin. A curved spine brought arms
tipped with metallic claws low to the ground. An elongated skull
sported jagged teeth and gleaming eyes, and a restlessly swishing tail
completed the nightmarish image.
"This is the best you could do, Sinestro?" Summers asked. "Your
technorgs looked tougher than horseface here."
"Joke now, Green Cyclops," Weapon X hissed, lunging at the man.
"You'll die soon enough."
"Yeah, yeah, that's what they all say." A wall of green light
formed in the creature's path, but to Summers' dismay, his opponent
crashed right through, slamming into him. He was able to catch the
thing's wrists and hold the claws from his throat as he struck the
ground, managing raise his leg and flip Weapon X off.
"You've gotten stronger, Summers," Weapon X hissed as it leaped
nimbly to its feet. "And faster. But it won't save you."
"Have we met?" Cyclops asked as he circled warily, a quarterstaff
appearing in his hands.
"You don't remember me, Summers? Ah, but I have changed since we
last met. And it *was* forty years ago. I will refresh your memory --
I was an interstellar explorer, a peaceful being who sought only to
discover the mysteries of the universe. My ship crashed on your foul
Earth, and as I walked your streets in search of aid, people screamed
and branded me a monster. You and the speed woman captured me, and your
government performed their abominable experiments on me until my body
began to rot with cancerous growth!"
The quarterstaff clattered to the floor, fading out of existance as
Summers stared in shock, feeling the blood drain from his face. The
woman had been Jean Garrick, the original Speed Demon, a former partner
and current lover. He remembered forty years ago they had been
dispatched by Washington to deal with an alien threat -- "Oh my God.
"*Weapon* X now, Summers!" the creature hissed. "A living weapon
of your destruction! Sinestro found me, cured me of the disease your
people had infected me with! He altered my body and honed my
already-formidable psionic abilities, training them to work in concert
towards one inevitable goal -- your death!!"
Metallic claws lashed out, flickering with psionic energy that
utterly destroyed the shield Green Cyclops reflexively threw up. They
tore into his chest, the energy surging through his nervous system,
paralyzing the scream in his throat.
"Well done, Weapon X," Sinestro commented as Summers' form crumpled
into a nerveless heap. "Your psychic dagger has completely
"Yes. And now he dies!" Claws raised to deliver the blow that
would crush the human's skull like a melon -- when an invisible force
slammed into the alien, throwing him across the room.
"By Qward's light, what -- ?" Mister Sinestro wheeled as a vision of
cold beauty shimmered into existance. Navy blue adorned the woman's
figure, ending in boots and gloves of crimson. A stylized American flag
stretched over her torso, a single dark star with stripes of reluctant
white and blood red. Golden hair streamed down to her back, and her
eyes were a heartless blue, a grim determination darkening them as her
grip tightened on the straps of the red and yellow S-shield she
carried. This was USAtrix, once created to replace the Super-Soldier
when the mighty patriot was injured, now used by the government in their
more covert operations.
Sinestro knew none of this, however. He only knew of an intruder
inside his lab, one that had signed her own death warrant. "Technorgs!"
he called, pointing towards the newcomer. "Destroy her!"
As USAtrix tensed for battle, Green Cyclops was struggling to his
feet. The wounds in his chest burned like fire, and his body felt like
lead, but he was no longer completely paralyzed. He saw Weapon X
recovering as well, rising from where the psychokinetic blast had
"She has granted you a reprieve, Summers," the alien hissed. "But
you will still die in the end."
"What my goverment did to you was wrong," Green Cyclops said as he
approached the alien. "I'd like to think I wasn't responsible . . . but
I know that's not true. If it wasn't for me and Speed Demon, you would
still be free. We shouldn't have been playing ‘good soldier.' We
should have asked questions, asked you what you wanted, instead of
following orders. I regret that now more than anything I ever have in
my life." He reached out a hand, the gold gauntlet stained with his own
blood. "Let me help you. I can reverse what Sinestro did to you. I
can help you find your way back to your home among the stars."
"Pretty words, Summers," Weapon X spat, looking at the human's hand
as though it were diseased. "The speed woman said her share of pretty
words -- but they did not save her from me."
Cyclops stared, horrified. "Speed Demon? You killed her?" Jean .
Weapon X laughed, a horrible sound of madness and evil. "Killed
her? Oh no, no, no, Summers. Sinestro had a much more . . . delightful
fate in store for her. He made her a technorg. You didn't recognize
her? She was the very first one he sent against you!" The alien
laughed again. "You killed her with your own emerald power before you
even set foot in this building!"
Crystalline horror froze his heart, and redness swam before his
eyes, blocking out the green-tinted world that usually greeted his
sight. The scent of her hair, the laughter in her eyes, the touch of
her lips . . . gone. Twisted into some mechanic abomination and
destroyed by his own hand.
"Do not grieve, Summers," Weapon X crooned with mock sympathy.
"Before long, you will join her!" The creature lept -- to be slammed
back and pinned against the wall by a steady beam of emerald light.
"You monster," Summers whispered, all his rage, his agony, his
hatred focusing into that single column of force. Tears flowed from his
open eyes, seeping through the seam of the visor to trail freely down
his cheeks. "Any pity I felt for you is gone. You let Sinestro twist
your hatred, make you into his pawn. You sowed death and misery at his
bidding. Well, there's a saying we humans have -- you reap what you
sow. You dealt death to how many, Weapon X? It doesn't matter -- I
give it now to you."
Tumors erupted all over the creature's arms and chest, swelling
like boils and spreading over its body like a rash. The alien screamed
and thrashed, but was unable to break free, pinned under the relentless
"God have mercy on whatever passes for your soul," Summers muttered
as the alien's corpse dissolved into a mucuous puddle.
Jean . . . He closed his eyes, bowing his head as mourning drew a
curtain over his heart -- to be ripped away by rage. Weapon X was just
a pawn. It was the king he wanted.
Mister Sinestro watched as USAtrix disposed of the last of his
technorgs, sending it crashing through the wall with a single punch. He
was really going to have to get those walls replaced. "Have we met?" he
asked as the woman turned to face him.
"By order of the United States goverment," USAtrix responded
coolly, "I am to take you into custody, using whatever means necessary."
"You are welcome to try." Sinestro grinned a charming grin,
spreading his hands. That grin abruptly vanished as a psi-bolt
shattered the force field surrounding his form. A snarl replaced it as
he grated, "It seems I will have to resort to stricter measures with
Energy coursed along his arms to his hands, slamming into USAtrix
like a tidal wave. The S-shield she had managed to raise for protection
shattered under the onslaught, even with the telekinetic backing behind
it, and the woman fell unconscious to the ground.
"Well, my dear, what to do with you?" Sinestro gazed at the woman
reflectively. "I suppose I could conduct some fascinating experiments .
A beam of raw energy struck him, utterly destroying half his body
and hurling him to the side. Green Cyclops stood over him, his entire
face seeming to flame with emerald rage.
"You've hounded me all my life, Sinestro," Summers hissed. "You
took the only woman I've ever cared about and you raped her -- raped her
body and her soul, tore away her humanity and merged it with a machine.
You sent it after me to kill me, making me destroy all that was left of
her. No more, Sinestro. Today, you die."
Lethal energy coursed towards the man, but was beaten back by an
emerald wave of vengeance. Sinestro shrieked as he felt it envelop his
body, rippling across his nerves in a sheet of pure agony, test the
molecular bonds and break them --
-- and like a black dream fading in the dawn's light, Sinestro
disintegrated into nothingness.
Summers stared for long moments at the smoking scorch-mark on the
floor, thinking everything and nothing. Then he heard the woman stir,
and he made his way over to offer his hand.
"Are you all right?" he asked, helping her to her feet.
"Yes," she replied, glancing at the blood seeping down his front.
"But you are injured."
"I'll heal." Yes . . . now that the nightmare was over, the
healing could begin. Finally.
"It is a shame you had to destroy Sinestro and Alien X," she
noted. "We could have learned much from them both. Still, all is not
"Just what are you doing here?" Green Cyclops asked. "You didn't
come to save my skin, that's for sure -- I don't even know you."
"That is not for you to know. On behalf of the United States
goverment, I thank you for your assistance, but your presence is no
longer required." So saying, USAtrix turned, making her way towards
"My God," Summers whispered, realization dawning as he inferred her
destination. "Sinestro's genetic research. That's what you were sent
here for, isn't it?"
"His work contains incalculable potential," USAtrix replied coolly.
Summers caught her arm. "He was a monster who used his work to
spawn more monsters! What good could come of that?!"
"Surely I do not have to describe to you the benefits in terms of
life-support and prosthetic technology. As a former government
operative, you should be able to appreciate the motivation behind my
assignment. Please, let go of me."
"No." Resolve hardened in the lines of Summers' face. "I played
'good soldier' once before. Two people paid for it with their lives --
Alien X and Speed Demon. The ends do *not* justify the means.
Sinestro's evil dies with him."
USAtrix shrugged easily out of his grip, turning to face him. "I
do not wish a physical confrontation, but I will respond if one is
"Kill or be killed, huh?" Green Cyclops tensed, green fire
flickering behind his visor. "The good old American way?"
"Not at all." Suddenly, the world wrenched before his eyes,
spinning and elongating in a sickening display. Gasping, Summers fell
to his knees, clutching at his head.
"I have no wish to kill you," USAtrix explained calmly. "I
understand that your power stems from concentration. Telepathic
disruption of your equilibrium effectively disables you."
"N -- Nice, lady." Green Cyclops managed. "But -- it doesn't take
-- a whole lot -- of con -- concentration -- to do -- *this!*" His hand
darted up, wrenching off the visor and sweeping the area, searching for
the origin of her voice. The twin emerald blasts struck her full-on,
her body slamming into the ceiling before crashing to the floor.
"You're tougher than you look," Summers noted, feeling his gorge
settle as he replaced his visor. "I saw that while you were fighting.
I don't think that killed you -- " He broke off, staring as USAtrix's body began to liquify, her skin sloughing off to reveal the dull white of bone. "Wha -- ?"
Quickly he shifted his focus, scanning her body in hopes of
determining what had happened to her. What he discovered amazed him --
she wasn't human. Her body was constructed out of a protomatter form, a
form which had reacted with the emerald energy and was now decaying.
She was dying.
He couldn't let her die. Before this day, he had never killed
another living being. He wasn't a cold-blooded murderer and he damn
well wasn't going to become one. Not over something as petty as
Emerald light washed over her body, encasing it in a protective
field. DNA chains and molecular structures danced in Summers' mind, as
he bent his will towards healing the damage he had caused.
To no avail. Her body continued to decay.
Come on, damn it! He increased the intensity of the beam, and as
he did so he could feel his eyes hurt, feel the beam falter slightly.
He had been expending energy continuously for the past few hours, and
now he was running out.
No! Not now! Please God, just a little longer . . .! Sweat broke
out on his brow as his teeth clenched, his hands curling into fists.
His eyes were burning now, feeling like they were melting in his skull.
His thoughts became sluggish as a dread weariness threatened to
The melting stopped . . . and slowly began to reverse.
Yes! Found it! Just a few more seconds under the field . . .
He never saw the yellow blast that snuffed out his life.
The dark-skinned woman watched impassivly as Green Cyclops'
lifeless body slumped over USAtrix's form, which had once more begun to
"Even if you had noticed me," she murmured, walking to stand above the
fallen human, "you would have been powerless against my xantho-death
charge." She stared for a moment more before throwing a vicious kick
into the side of Summer's corpse. "Your kind destroyed my homeworld.
Just as you have destroyed my master. But I will use his work. I will
rally new armies to aid me in obliterating all who wield the emerald
"I am the only survivor of a dead world, and so do I now feed off
death, carry it within my body to release at my whim. Xanshi is no more
-- but Threnody lives on!"
And the woman who was once Yrra Cynril threw back her head, and
laughed into the still, dark night.
Back to GL Fan Fiction
Back to the GLC Web Page