4 Calling Birds - Chapter 1

Hark, The Herald Villains Sing

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Author: Smega

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"Don't look at me, Janice! I'm a vile wretch, a monster! …I killed my own mother!"
"But, Lance… I
am your mother!"

With a THWAK! Nefarious awoke bent over his desk.
"Good evening, sir. I trust you slept well." It was Lawrence. The doctor just gave a "hmp" of acknowledgement, sighed, and hung his head on the desk.
"If I may be so out-of-character, sir," Lawrence said, "is something troubling you?"
"I'm fresh out of supervillainy, Lawrence," said Doctor Nefarious. "I ain't what I used to be. I'm a failure!"
"Tell me something I don't know. - Ah, there I am again."
"I sent a doomsday device down to Luminopolis designed to conquer planet Igliak by blowing up everyone's butt… but I ended up blowing up my own butt!!!"
Lawrence just stood there.
Nefarious looked at him.
Lawrence blinked. "…No comment."
"I'm a failure!!" Nefarious banged his head on the desk. "I'm pathetic!" And again. "I suck!!" And again.
"There there, sir. Take a break from your work over the holiday season. You'll feel like you never became a supervillain at all."
Nefarious groaned softly. "Go and fetch me an active plasma sedative."
"Very good, sir." Lawrence departed. "Merry Christmas."

Nefarious slouched over his desk, idly staring at its surface. He looked at it for a while, then he looked to the evil cat calendar on the wall. The first week and a half were crossed out.
Lawrence was right. Christmas was just around the corner.
With his wandering eyes, Nefarious discovered he was holding in his right hand the polaroid of himself with Ratchet, Clank, and Copernicus Qwark. He viewed it fondly as wave files from his previous adventure played in his robotic mind.
"Perhaps using your intelligence for good will yield better results."
"You woulda done the same for me, right?"
"I'm impressed, Nefarious! You did good!"
"I'm sorry I pushed you around in high school."
"I still consider you a friend."

Doctor Nefarious set the photo down, and pressed a button on his desk.
"Lawrence, cancel the sedative." He perked up, ducked under his chair and produced a toolbox filled with implements and materials of all sorts; or at least those that will fit inside a toolbox. He clapped his hands and set to work.

It took him all night, but by the crack of dawn, the doctor completed his project:
a scale model of a Light-eating Z'Grute.
Wasting little time, he packaged it and put it in the outgoing mail chute.
He smiled.

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