5th Column Comics: Wind Duster #38

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TommytheHitman

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#1  Edited By TommytheHitman

Thanks to @impurestcheese for writing out the fight scene.

Dervish based off an idea by @batkevin74

Dervish: Part 5 of 5

Indigo City.

I can hear their voices from my little prison.

"What the hell are you doing here, Peacekeeper?" Alexander Wolffe asks from the streets. "What are WE even doing here?"

"We're looking for Wind Duster." A woman sighs, she's somewhere near the entrance to the warehouse I'm stuck in. Her breathing's steady, heat beating at a normal pace and it's clear she knows exactly what she's doing. I can't even see her and can already tell she's in control of this little posse that's come to pick me up. "Obviously." She adds before stopping right by the entrance and peering through one of the warehouse's windows. "He's in here." The woman says. "Diver. Kick it open!"

"Sure thing, PK." A loud, crashing sound fills my ears and I realize that help has finally arrived. "Hey! I guess what they say is true!" The blindfold around my eyes gets ripped off, and I see light for the first time in a few days. Granted the room is basically pitch black but its close enough. "X really does mark the spot!" Diver jokes before grinning slightly, behind him Alexander Wolffe and the woman he's with step into the building, both seem completely serious and bored.

"That's a pretty good one, Diver." His hand reaches out and helps up off the ground that's been my home for the last three days. "I may have to steal it for later."

My friend gives off a laugh. "Don't you dare." Quickly I brush dust and dirt out of my hair and away from my face, my hair's unkempt, with bruises and cuts still covering my skin from the beating I gained from my doppelganger recently. Also I stink like something a dog threw up.

"Mark." Wolffe nods respectfully from the door, face ugly and bloody. He tosses a bundle of blue and black fabric towards me, only for it to bounce off my chest and hit the ground. My reactions have been a bit slow since my captivity. "We brought you something." He says. "God knows why."

PWOP!

"Welcome back."

I pull down my mask, attack my cape and tighten the Velcro straps on my boots.

"I mean... I guess 'welcome back' works. I mean to me you've only been gone for a few hours but I guess in reality you've been gone fo-"

"Thanks Wolffe." I interrupt from behind the comfort and warmth of my mask. "How'd you guys find me?" I ask.

This time it's the woman who speaks. She's dressed in light body armour, a helmet covering most of her face with a bunch of different types of weapons strapped to her body.

"Simple. The abandoned district of Indigo is the most logical place to hide someone." She gives me a cold stare from beneath her gear, I glance at her for a second and honestly can't tell if she's insane or something else entirely.

"Peacekeeper, right?" She smiles and nods her head. At least she has emotions. "Nice to finally meet you." The two of us shake hands, and that's when I realize this is like some kind of superhero team-up that all the geeks get excited about. If Freight Train was here he'd probably be freaking out. I know I am.

"Likewise." Peacekeeper tells me.

"Seriously. Thanks guys." I say, relieved to be free from the hell that my life's been recently. "I owe all of you a huge favour for this. And if there's every anything you need I'll be happy t-"

VRRR!!!

"I'm in love with you, girl! You know you blow ma mind, you're the one I think about most every ti-"

"Whoops, got a text!" All of us glance at Diver who's quickly trying to turn off his phone's ring tone. After his choice of music stops torturing my ears he stares at the screen for a solid five seconds before looking back up at us. "The Response have hit a bit of a snag..."

I almost laugh at the idea of a superhero getting a call for help from his phone. "You gave the Response your phone number?" I ask.

The four of us all group together, a quadrilogy of badasses that all feel the need to hit something.

"That's probably going to come back to bite me." Diver sighs while holstering his mobile.

"Probably." I look at my friends and allies, amazed at my luck. "I'm going to go kick the crap out of myself." I tell them. "Do you guys wanna come?"

The three heroes all nod.

"Great."

PWOP!

_______________________________

Months ago... When I first 'became' Wind Duster, before I joined the Response and before I met some of the greatest people in my life I had a talk with my daughter.

Daisy Brooks. She says it's her mother's last name, not mine. Whatever works I guess.

I'd just faced off with that heat blasting idiot in the alley... My first real tangle with a super-powered criminal, and as I lay on my bed in tattered robes with bloody bruises my daughter explained something to me that I once laughed at.

She told me there are two types of super villains in the world. There's the mind villain, the monster who attacks me from behind the scenes and lacks the physical presence to fight me full on...

Matthew Scythe kinda fits into that category.

Then there's the soldier villain. A villain of pure skill that can match me blow for blow. People like Axe-Man and the various assassins I've faced over the last few months come to mind.

Obviously my daughter was right. The bruises and emotional pain I've been through have proven that. But there was one thing she was wrong about. There's another category she neglected to mention.

There's a type of villain who's my exact opposite. Someone can match me physically while also managing to manipulate my every move and torment my loved ones.

The type of villain that has me matched in every way.

His name is Dervish. I've had some time to think of a name for him that doesn't involve cursing... and a twirling Dervish seems to fit the guy.

"You son of a b!tch." He says from across the street, knowing full well that I'm the only one who can hear him. "You utter ba$tard."

We're stood in the street just below the CBTF headquarters, my daughter is in the building's lobby, watching through glass as her father prepares to go up against a man who's already kicked the crap out of him. But this time I'm not alone.

I finally understood why people in the comic books team up. It's not because they feel less awkward running around in spandex when they're with other people... it's because sometimes there are people they can't beat alone, no matter what they do. I finally understand that, and I'm glad that I happen to know some of the greatest people on the planet.

The people around me all brace up and begin to draw their weapons. The World's Greatest Heroes are by my side, ready to fight for the life of my daughter, and somehow I'm the one who's leading them.

"It's over." I tell him. "There's nothing you can do. There's nowhere you can run. Or hide. Give up and maybe I'll go easy on you."

In response Dervish simply laughs, a foul chuckle that I know too well.

"Oh Mark. You little piece of crap. What makes you think I'm trying to hide?" He sniggers slightly, pulls down the hood on his jacket and summons a blast of wind that wraps around his legs and levitates him into the air. "I'm not going to run." He tells me. "I'm going to kill your friends... and make you watch, like I promised. Then I'm going to take my daughter back, and get the life I deserve." He sneers, a high powered gust of wind radiating out from the base of the tornado, one that leaves cracks in the concrete by his feet and sends the cars parked on the street flying outwards.

"What do we do?" Freight Train asks from behind me, I can tell by his heartbeat that he's not in the best physical condition. Neither's Maystrike. The Response have had their teeth kicked in and are still trying to fight.

"Go get my daughter." I tell them, body tingling as I prepare to move against the ba$tard smiling down the street.

“Okay we need to approach this from a tactical…” Peacekeeper begins to say, only for her words to be interrupted as I burst towards Dervish, rage bubbling in my brain as he calmly waits for me to approach. It takes a second to reach him, and in that second I know what he’s going to do, yet when he grabs me by the throat and uses my momentum to slam me into the ground, it still surprises me. In sharp contrast all that’s happened to my sinister doppelgänger, is that he’s been forced to land, unharmed and amused at my predicament.

“Get him!” Wolffe bellows as he and Diver rush in, only for Dervish to teleport off of the ground, cackling with malice before swooping down and throwing Wolffe up into the air with sheer strength. Going for a throw of his own, I see Diver narrowly miss hitting Dervish, as he teleports up to where Wolffe's hovering before smashing him back down to Earth, his body smashes through the concrete of the sidewalk and into the gas pipe below, sending fumes up into the air.

Coughing and spluttering, Alex staggers away from his landing zone, just as Dervish rips up one of the fence posts and slams it into Diver, catching him by surprise and sending him stumbling back a few steps. Its quickly followed by a shard of the fence post stabbing into the aquatic avenger's arm, sticking out as blood starts to well.

“Oh cra-” Diver starts to say, just as a gust of wind sends him skidding across the road, the metal post sparking against the exposed gas main, the detonation sending him flying into the same building as me. Turning, Dervish locks eyes with Peacekeeper before teleporting behind her and slugging her in the back of the head. I could barely stand his attacks... I don't want to imagine the pain she's feeling.

Responding quickly she tries to strike, only for Dervish to teleport again and strike her exposed back, the pair of them repeating the actions three more times before he gets fed up of the game and throws her into the same wall he threw me into.

“Guess it’s time to rinse and repeat." Dervish sighs, as he leaps onto Wolffe, his feet slamming down on to the man’s spine with considerable force. Flipping him over, he starts raining punches down onto my friend causing the silent rage to come forth again. Charging in I see him turn what would have been a punch on Wolffe, into a powerful slap directly in my face, the blow sending me sliding back across the floor into the wall I’d smashed into only half a minute before.

“Ow..." I groan, just as Peacekeeper pulls me onto my feet, her eyes bloody and her helmet slightly cracked.

“Go find your daughter, we can hold him here until you…” She never gets to finish her speech to me, the anger still very much burning throughout my body as Diver makes a lunge at Dervish only for him to step out of his path and straight into mine.

For the first time since this fight started I get my hands on him and keep barrelling forward, through the electrified fence and into the wall of the CBTF headquarters, the thick concrete wall terminating my flight with a satisfying crunch. Taking advantage of the sudden stop I punch Dervish in the chin as my friends start to converge on us.

THIS is the moment where we get the upper hand. It’s the moment when the nightmare…

PWOP!

With a quick flash of purple light I suddenly find the two of us spinning head first towards the roof of the CBTF Headquarters.

“I’m STRONGER than you!” Dervish snarls, as I land on the roof with a thud. “I’m BETTER than you!” He continues as I land a few punches on his torso and legs, “I’m smarter than you!” He growls as he aims a kick at my throat, only for me to teleport away from the blow. “I love HER more than you!” I strike him from behind only for him to grab me and slam me back down onto the rooftop. “And I’m more POWERFUL than you!!” He roars, just as the entire roof lifts up, followed by the vehicles on the street and even some of the CBTF agents in the buildings, all of them heading to one single crushing point high above me. “You are nothing! And you have everything!!” He cries, as he tosses me up towards the singularity, my body smashing into one of the CBTF Patrol Vehicles caught in the maelstrom.

“All I see is pr!ck with my powers..." I spit as the singularity releases everything it picked up in a crushing hail of debris, with the Huntress Patrol Vehicle slamming flank first into the ground leaving me pacing upwards as Dervish lands, surrounded by debris.

Advancing on me with a sneer, he knocks me to the ground with a quick swipe of wind and cracks his knuckles. I can tell he's been looking forward to this...

He towers over me before placing his foot on my chest, keeping me pinned down. With a small groan I try to struggle, too tired to even teleport, however it's all pointless as I accept what's about to happen. His foot comes slamming down on my left arm... and I hear a snapping sound, followed by pain. Screaming, I watch as he grips me by the neck and brace his fist to pummel me to death. He's not even bothering to pick me up... he's just letting the rest of my body lie on the roof.

"You have everything I had, Mark." He tells me. "And now..." He seems to relish in the moment. The guy has a flair for the dramatic, something we have in common. "I'm going to take it back."

"I have... I have something you've never had." I gasp.

"And what's that?"

“Friends.” Peacekeeper’s voice radiates across the street. A shiver seems to go through Dervish's spine and he turns to see the vigilante on the other side of the roof. Tossing me aside, Dervish takes to the air so he can look the last hero standing in the eye, just as a red laser washes over his body.

“Peacekeeper, right?” Dervish snorts. “What do you think an optical laser would achieve? Are you trying to blind me?” He cackles as he gains even more altitude over the defiant young woman.

“That would be fun, but I’m afraid we’re going to have to make do with the fourteen HE warheads my brother scavenged up for you.” Peacekeeper replied as a salvo of rockets came flying towards Dervish, the villain smirking as he summoned up a gust of wind that knocked the majority of the projectiles off course.

Groaning I watch as one of the missiles falls towards me, getting to me feet I take to the air and grab the rocket and slam it into Dervish’s legs, the explosion knocking both of us to the street below. My head ringing from the explosion, I stagger towards Dervish and practically collapse on-top of him, my body keeping him pinned to the scarred tarmac.

“You are not better than me!” I hiss, as Diver rushes forward and pins Dervish’s arms. Seconds later Freight Train and Dark Arrow come running out of the CBTF building, each one of them taking an arm or a leg and holding down Dervish as he tries to shake us, the motion knocking me off of him.

"Keep him pinned!" I yell. That’s when the first blow lands, I don’t know who threw it, but seconds later a mob mentality takes over us and we all start attacking Dervish as he lies helpless. Our fists pummel into his body, each of us desperate to keep the unstoppable villain down.

Rushing over Wolffe and Peacekeeper try and pull the attackers off of Dervish. Well.... Peacekeeper does anyway. The girl rushes forward, however Alex simply holds out his hand, telling her to stop.

"Let HIM decide." He tells her, sternly.

Then I realize what we're doing.

“ENOUGH!!” I yell, my voice causing everyone to freeze, and then step back as we all look down in horror at Dervish’s bleeding and broken body.

“You’re... wrong." Dervish hisses, somehow still awake. "You're not better then me... none of you are 'heroes'." Blood drips from his mouth and he climbs up to his knees, kneeling before me. "Daisy needs to be protected from all of you.” His words stoke the furnace inside me one more time and I brace my still functioning hand into a fist. "I...I'm better then you." He says one last time.

My fist slams into his face, knocking him down to the ground, unconscious. A sigh of relief seems to wash over all of us as my heart beats violently in my chest.

"I. Don't. Care." I tell him.

It's over. The monster is down and I can finally relax.

"Daddy?" The crowd of heroes around me seems to seperate, revealing my daughter. She looks tired, her hair's messy and she seems unsure of what's actually going on.

"Hi Daisy Bais..." I mutter before opening up my arms and embracing the most perfect girl in the world.

The two of us hug for what feels like an eternity, my friends seem to stare at us in an awkward silence.

"Thanks fellas."

_____________________________________

"Oh god."

Mark Brooks, the twirling Dervish seemed to shiver in his newly created cell below the CBTF Headquarters, his body was covered with bruises and his eyes were shielded in a blindfold that prevented him from teleporting to freedom. He was terrified of his surroundings, he had no idea where he was and felt like something terrible was going to happen to him.

Once he'd been the most powerful being on the Planet. Partly because he'd killed everyone else who challenged him. Now he was just a quivering husk that was too scared to breathe without permission. He was the equivalent of a school yard bully who'd realized that whatever reputation he had in school didn't matter to the outside world.

"Calm down." A voice said. "Just tell me it again."

"Tell... tell you what?" Dervish asked.

"How you feel."

"I... I feel like I made a mistake." Mark admitted, leaning against the wall of his cell. "I was too brash. I've never been much of a thinker, I... I think that's pretty clear now."

"I know."

"I'm powerful. But all the power in the world doesn't mean a thing when you don't know how to use it."

The man in the other cell simply laughed, sending a chill down the villain's spine. The second time that had happened recently.

"That's what I'm here for." The man said.

"Who are you?" Dervish asked.

"Scythe." Dervish's cell mate answered. "Matthew Scythe."

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TommytheHitman

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knightofthechronicle

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@tommythehitman: So worth the wait. I loved how everyone came together to beat Dervish (I'm using that ringtone for Diver in the future). The classic villain helping villain thing at the end was cool, too. Are we ever going to get how Dervish came into the main 5CC world?

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ImpurestCheese

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@tommythehitman: Will drop a comment later, just got home via tow truck and I'm exhausted. Looks good though.

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cbishop

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TommytheHitman

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@knightofthechronicle: The song is called 'Girl You Know It's True' I literally found it by typing in 'cheesy 90s songs'

We're definitely going to learn more about Dervish.

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ImpurestCheese

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@tommythehitman: Uh oh Scythe and Dervish, obviously someone corrupt organised that mix up. Astani help us if they ever get released, or worse busted out by someone...