Symka Issue 9

Copyright Sean McGinity © 2003

Edited by Suzanne Campbell for The Guild Companion

"I think you have something of mine, and I don't have time to ask nice."

PAGE ONE.

Splash Page

We are in the restaurant, Octavian's . In the center of the shot, at a slight bird's eye view, we see El Tigre, Stick, Host, and Watchman. Watchman is holding Host up in the air by the throat. Host is struggling, trying to pry Watchman's fingers away with both hands. They are all looking at the Hi-Tech Henchmen/Katharta Crew surrounding them, who include two Big Thugs (7 foot tall muscled henchmen, both male), two Minions (magic-users in very elegant suits with long pony-tailed hair, with flared pant bottoms and sleeves), and four Hounds/Leapers (two men with short, slicked back hair and two women with slightly longer ponytails, all of whom are wearing stylish suits). The Thugs are coming in from the kitchen entranceway, past Silver, who is standing directly next to them. They aren't even paying attention to her as she is in human form and does not appear to be part of the team. The Minions and Leapers are coming in from the main entranceway of the restaurant and are already several steps beyond that. Within this "circle", the remnants of a table that was blasted with one of Host's mystical blasts is on the ground; all that's left is a leg and a very small section of the table the leg is connected to.

Title: Let's all go to Octavian's

PAGE TWO.

Panel 1.

Tight 3/4 shot of Watchman, Stick and El Tigre. Watchman is looking at Stick and El Tigre with a "What the hell is this?" expression on his face.

Panel 2.

Similar panel as last.

Stick: They're here to get us.

El Tigre: They aren't friendly.

Panel 3.

Tight 1/4 shot of Host, with Watchman's hand choking him.

Watchman: Temporary truce, then?

Host: gurgle.

Panel 4.

Full shot. Watchman lets go of Host, who drops to the ground. El Tigre and Stick stand there with eyes over their shoulders.

El Tigre: Indeed. We settle our problems later?

Stick: Agreed.

Panel 5.

Far shot. Host is on the ground clutching at his throat. El Tigre straightens his stance, looking tough and ready. Stick tightens his grip on his staff. Watchman smiles, ready for the fight that's coming.

El Tigre: You're getting nothing. You framed us, you louts! Here's where you get your comeuppance!

Panel 6.

Tight 1/4 shot of El Tigre at one end of the panel, with one of the Minions at the other end of the panel. In one deft movement, El Tigre unsheathes his kukri blade and throws it, burying the blade deep in the Minion's shoulder.

Blade (fx): SHUK!

PAGE THREE.

Panel 1.

3/4 shot. Stick swings his staff in a wide sweep; one Leaper jumps out of the way, but another Leaper is caught smack in the knees. Also in the panel, Watchman is walking off, with an intense look on his face.

Staff (fx): SWAK!

Panel 2.

Far shot of Watchman and a tight back 3/4 shot of one of the Minions. The Minion is firing a double-armed blast of crimson energy at Watchman's head, which he avoids by shifting his body over slightly, and his head more dramatically.

Blast (fx): ZZOT!

Panel 3.

Tight 1/4 shot, slight worm's eye view to show Watchman's height difference over the Minion; Watchman is 6'6" while the Minion is 5'9". Watchman reaches out with both hands grabbing the front of the Minion's jacket.

Panel 4.

Wide short panel. 3/4 shot of Watchman, full shot of the Minion. Watchman tosses the Minion across the panel (the Minion is traveling sideways in the panel) into two Leapers who didn't expect the attack.

Fx: WOMP!

Panel 5.

Full side shot. Silver runs into the kitchen, shepherding a couple of people out of the building.

Caption: Silver, on the sidelines, is helping the bystanders get to safety, rushing them out through the kitchen...

Silver: Run! Run!

Silver (thinking): This is crazy! Things were bad enough without Katharta's people here.

Panel 6.

3/4 shot of Silver in the kitchen. She is deep in thought, as several people rush out the back door, out the building.

Silver (thinking): I don't like the idea of running, but even if we can beat the Henchmen, we still have Host and Watchman to contend with.

PAGE FOUR

Panel 1.

Full shot of Dale. He is firing a pistol (a Glock) sidelong at one of the Thugs who is in a far shot, striking him in the shoulder blade.

Caption: But Dale Turcott, formerly of Independent News, has had enough of waiting around. He decides to take some sort of action...

Dale (thinking): It doesn't matter if I blow my cover. The odds are not in their favor. I need to help in any way I can. I'm still a damn good shot.

Panel 2.

Same shot as last. The Thug turns around to face Dale, enraged. Dale is starting to run in the opposite direction.

Dale (thinking): Well, I got his attention...

Panel 3.

The back office of the restaurant: full shot of Gideon and Bryce. Gideon is holding up a fist, ready to strike. Bryce is defiant, standing tall, a sour look on his face.

Caption: And where is Gideon during all this? He snuck away last issue to the back office to find Bryce. From information given to them by the courier for the mysterious figure known only as Blue Moon, and by information Gideon was able to glean through the tablet, he tracked another of the tablets to Bryce and Bryan's restaurant, Octavian's.

Gideon: I don't have time to play. The tablet, now!

Panel 4.

Same shot as last except Bryce is leaning forward in defiance, getting right in Gideon's face.

Caption: What Gideon doesn't know is that Bryan has recently left for New York with the tablet, leaving Bryce to guard the fort here at Octavian's.

Bryce: Screw you, murderer! You killed to get the tablet you have! Even if I had it, I wouldn't give it to scum like you!

Panel 5.

Tight 3/4 shot for claustrophobic effect. Gideon backhands Bryce, sending him reeling into the wall.

Fx: SLAP!

Panel 6.

Far shot of Bryce looking up from the ground, a trickle of blood coming from his nose.

Bryce: I thought you were some sort of superhero.

Panel 7.

Close-up shot of Gideon's face. He has his teeth clenched in an evil smile.

Gideon: Remember, you just labeled me a murderer. What's to stop me from killing you?

PAGE FIVE

Panel 1.

Far shot of one of the Leapers, squaring off against Watchman. He has heard the sound of the slap from the office. He is distracted.

Leaper: What?

Panel 2.

Watchman takes advantage of this, smashing a downward fist into the man's shoulder, dropping him hard.

Watchman: Pay attention, squirt! You're in a fight here.

Fx: SMASH!

Panel 3.

Large panel to show off all of the action. Far shot. Towards the left side of the panel, Watchman is squaring off against the Minion and two Leapers he had just attacked. The Minion has already got back to his feet and crimson eldritch energy is flaring from his fists. The two Leapers are just getting to their feet. On the right side of the panel, in the foreground, Stick is striking down with a fist onto the stabbed Minion.

Panel 4.

Far shot of the Minion, full shot of Stick. The Minion turns to face Stick, firing off an eldritch blast at him, who deflects the shot with his staff like he was wielding a baseball bat. A Thug is behind Stick, moving in on him. Stick is unaware of him.

Fx: ZZOT!

Fx: KAZOW!

Panel 5.

Far shot. The Thug sends a fist directly into Stick's back. Stick takes the blow hard, almost wrapping around the impact.

Fx: POW!

Panel 6.

Far shot. Stick is down on the ground, struggling to get to his feet, while the Thug reaches over for the staff, which lies next to Stick.

Panel 7.

3/4 shot of the Thug picking up the staff and receiving the shock of his life. The effect should be obvious with electricity like tendrils coming from the staff, up the Thug's arms.

Fx: ZKKKKKKKKKK!

PAGE SIX

Panel 1.

Far shot, large panel to show the power behind El Tigre's attack. The stabbed Minion is rough around the edges and conjures up a crimson eldritch shield to block an attack from a kicking El Tigre, who leaps in from a dozen feet away.

El Tigre: I think you have something of mine, and I don't have time to ask nice.

Fx: BONG!

Panel 2.

3/4 shot of El Tigre. The Minion is crouched down in front of him, holding up the eldritch shield. Behind, a Leaper is sneaking up on El Tigre, who sees the approach from the corner of his eyes.

Panel 3.

Full shot. The Leaper attempts a sidekick that El Tigre manages to avoid. The kick strikes the eldritch shield instead.

Fx: BONG!

Panel 4.

Far shot. El Tigre grabs the Leaper by the back of his clothes.

Panel 5.

Far shot. El Tigre spins the Leaper around in a circle, impacting his head into the shield.

Fx: BONG!

PAGE SEVEN

Panel 1.

Far shot of a Big Thug running forward into the panel. In the forefront of the panel, Dale is running away from him, between two narrowly spaced tables. His upper body is twisted backwards so he can fire a shot back towards, which strikes the Thug in the shoulder to no effect.

Dale (thinking): I got him coming after me. Now what? I've got to plan this out.

Gun (fx): KA-POW!

Panel 2.

Same shot as last. The Thug is between the two tables Dale passed last panel, flipping them off to each side. Dale is semi-crouched in the forefront of the panel, facing the Thug.

Dale (thinking): Backed up against the wall and I'm out of ammo... I know I can outmanoeuvre this guy, but I can't keep running all day!

Panel 3.

Full side-angled shot. Dale is running towards the Thug at full speed, slightly crouched to remain below the Thug's outstretched hands. The Thug's size should dwarf Dale's in this panel.

Panel 4.

Full shot. Back view of the Big Thug as Dale slides across the floor between the Thug's legs, arms outstretched forward. Dale is exhilarated. The Thug is reaching forward and down.

Panel 5.

Side-angled far shot of Host. With one hand, Host whips his bow in a backhand, smacking a Leaper over the back of his head, catching him unawares. Despite this, he is focused on the doorway to the back office (which got blasted open last issue), trying to peer in from his location.

Host (thinking): What was that? A flare of magic?

Host (thinking): Emerald magic.

Host (thinking): What's going on the back office?

Bow (fx): SWACK!

Panel 6.

Far shot. Host does the reverse attack on the Leaper, downing him.

Host (thinking): Enough of this. There's more going on behind the scenes.

Bow (fx): SMACK!

PAGE EIGHT

Panel 1.

Small Panel. Full shot of Watchman. He is standing, slightly crouched, and looking over his shoulder.

Watchman (thinking): Where the hell is Host going?

Panel 2.

Large panel. Far shot of Watchman on the left of the panel, and the Minion that last attacked Stick off-centre and Stick on the right of the panel. Stick is crumpled on the ground, fighting to get to his feet but completely out of it. The Minion is firing off a blast of crimson energy at Watchman hitting him in the chest. The blast actually illuminates Watchman and part of the room in a red glare.

Fx: ZZOT!

Panel 3.

Large panel. Far shot of Watchman. He is getting worn down and looks it. His clothes are really starting to look tattered at this point. His chest is welted from the energy blast last panel. Behind Watchman is a Leaper. He is standing on a table, half-watching Watchman, half watching the back of the room. At Watchman's feet, another Leaper is starting to get to his feet.

Watchman (thinking): Ow! That freaking hurt! He's too far away for me to close on him and those blasts are strong enough to take me out of this game. Time for a different strategy.

Panel 4.

Far shot. The Leaper from the table lands a flying kick on Watchman, catching him in the side. The other Leaper is almost to his feet.

Fx: THUD!

Panel 5.

Far shot. Watchman is down on all fours, shaking his head. The kicking Leaper stands over Watchman, reaching out an upturned hand towards him. The other Leaper is on his feet.

Kicking Leaper (thinking): What does it take to keep this monster down? Now, while I have the chance...

Panel 6.

Small tight panel. Close-up shot of the Leaper's hand closing in on Watchman's back.

Kicking Leaper (thinking): ... a paralyzing touch will keep him down.

PAGE NINE

Panel 1.

Tight small panel. Close-up of Watchman's fist smashing into the Leaper's face.

Fx; CRACK!

Panel 2.

Far shot. The Kicking Leaper is struggling on his feet, trying to maintain his balance. Watchman is on one knee, pushing himself up on one hand, reaching out to the Leaper with the other hand. The other Leaper is to his feet and moving towards Watchman.

Panel 3.

Tight 1/4 shot of Watchman grabbing the Kicking Leaper by the ankles.

Panel 3.

Large panel. Full shot. Watchman has the Kicking Leaper by the ankles and is swinging him upwards at a 30-degree angle from the ground. The Kicking Leaper is totally taken by surprise. This baseball bat the Kicking Leaper had become smashes across the body of the Leaper that was charging last panel, lifting him a couple of feet off the ground. To the far right of the panel, the Minion that had blasted Watchman last round steps back from the swinging Watchman. Stick is also in the panel, crouched but back on his feet. He is eyeing the Minion. He is picking up his staff.

Watchman (thinking): Whoa! Kind of woozy. This'll buy me some time to shake the cobwebs. My balance is shot. What the hell was in that energy blast they struck me with?

Fx: CRACK!

Stick (thinking): Where am I? I feel like I got hit with a sledgehammer.

PAGE TEN

Panel 1.

Side angled 1/4 shot of Stick. He is still in a crouched position. In the background of the panel is the Minion backing up towards Stick, apparently unaware of Stick. Stick has the staff in hand.

Stick (thinking): Well, here's a target to get me back in the game. I hate to attack from behind but...

Panel 2.

Tight 3/4 shot. Stick swings a strong fist forward aiming where the Minion's head was last panel. The Minion has bobbed his head to one side. The Minion catches Stick's arm with both hands.

Stick: Wha?

Panel 3.

Same shot as last, but at a reverse angle. Electricity courses from the Minion's hands into Stick's body, electrocuting him.

Stick: AAAAARGH!

Fx: BZZZZT!

Panel 5.

Splash style panel. Bird's eye view shot of the action. Watchman (on the left of the panel, sort of in the background) is wildly swinging the Leaper in a wide arc, in the reverse direction this time. The Leaper is barely conscious but hanging on. The Minion (in the forefront) is stepping around Stick to the left, out of Watchman's reach. Stick (right of the Minion, more in the background) is hunched over, trying not to fall over. A Big Thug (just entering the right side of the panel) gets clipped by the Leaper in Watchman's hands.

Fx: SMAK!

Panel 6.

Larger panel. Watchman swings again. The Minion moves in and around to the left of Watchman, ducking under the swing of the Leaper. Watchman is unaware of the Minion. The Big Thug is rubbing his head where he got clipped and waiting to move forward.

Big Thug: You think you're so good, big guy? Think you're some sort of super-hero?

PAGE ELEVEN

Panel 1.

Far shot of the fight, with Silver in the forefront (back angled shot) surveying the scene.

Silver (thinking): There is too much chaos here. I need to change into an animal and help out --- but should I chance it? Can I even still change?

Silver (thinking): I do have the gun Turcott gave me... but is it worth endangering someone's life to stop this?

Panel 2.

Far shot. El Tigre is letting go of the Leaper (whose head he was bashing into the shield), looking off away from the Minion. The Minion is on one knee on the ground, still holding up the Eldritch shield.

El Tigre (thinking): I've had just about enough of this. I can't seem to penetrate that damned shield of his. I could try getting around it, but I don't have the time to play with this guy. When Watchman drops, we'll have lost our big gun. I need to help him out quickly. And I don't want to get too close to that shield. He's liable to be able to shock me through it or something.

Panel 3.

Full shot. El Tigre picks up a table by the legs, large enough to cover most of his body.

El Tigre (thinking): Let's see if it pays to be creative.

Panel 4.

Far side shot. With the table in front of him, he charges towards the shield.

Panel 5.

Large panel. Side angled far shot. El Tigre with the table in front of him rams into the Minion's shield, lifting him up and back.

El Tigre (thinking): Maybe I don't need to get around it.

Fx: THOK!

Panel 6.

Large panel. El Tigre keeps moving, using the table to push the shield the Minion has up, which crushes the Minion between his shield and the wall behind him in a massive impact that breaks through the drywall.

Fx: CRASH!

PAGE TWELVE

Panel 1.

The Minion is stuck in the wall, slumped forward on his chest, arms and legs hanging down. He is unconscious. The shield is dissipating.

Panel 2.

Same shot, except a larger panel to include El Tigre, pulling his blade from the Minion's shoulder. He is looking away from him, apparently completely unconcerned about him.

El Tigre (thinking): Now, Watchman... I'm coming to your rescue.

Panel 3.

Large panel. Watchman in the background is still swinging the Leaper wildly and blindly, hoping to hit anything. Dale, more in the foreground, is coming in at an angle to Watchman, just out of reach of the "bat". Immediately behind him is the Big Thug that was chasing him, completely focused on Dale and not being careful about Watchman. Also in the panel to the right of the running Big Thug is the other Big Thug (who got clipped by the "bat" previously).

Panel 4.

Same shot as last. Dale baseball slides under the swinging "bat". Watchman is still swinging the Leaper blindly. The Big Thug moves into range and is clocked by the "bat". The other Thug tenses, arms partly outstretched.

Fx: SMAK!

Panel 5.

Far shot. The Thug struck by the "bat" has stepped back. The other Thug catches the "bat" by the arms. The "bat" is unconscious. Watchman is a little surprised. Dale is underneath both men, looking up at the "bat".

Big Thug: Ha! Such a big man!

Panel 6.

3/4 side shot. Watchman and the Thug are tugging on each end. The arms of the "bat" dislocate. There is pure exertion in both their faces. Dale is crawling on all fours toward the thug.

Big Thug: Thought you'd clear the room out with this trick?

Watchman: Yeah, I did. Didn't want to get my hands too dirty dealing with the likes of your kind.

Big Thug: It's time to put up or shut up!

Panel 7.

Close-up of Watchman's reddened face, teeth gritted.

Watchman: Think you're stronger than me, buddy-boy? I've been doing this longer than you realize. I used to be as strong as you are when I started out...

PAGE THIRTEEN

Splash.

Watchman stands in the foreground of the page, every muscle tensed, his legs slightly bent, and his feet planted into the ground, actually cracking the floorboards. Watchman launches the "bat" and the Thug in one fell tug, sending both of them crashing into the far wall of the restaurant, breaking through the drywall and part of the brick behind it. The Thug takes the entire brunt of the impact from the Leaper. Dale is on all fours on the ground watching this, eyes wide in surprise. The other Thug is also in the panel, watching, ready to make his move in a three-point stance.

Fx: BOOM!

Watchman: ... but I'm all grown up now!

PAGE FOURTEEN

Panel 1.

Full shot. The second Thug charges Watchman, breaking some ribs in the impact.

Fx: WHUMP!

Fx: CRACK!

Panel 2.

The momentum from last panel carries over, with the Thug bull-rushing Watchman into the wall in a far shot.

Watchman: AAARGH!

Fx: THUD!

Fx: CRACK!

Panel 3.

Large narrow panel. Back office. Full angled back shot. Gideon has Bryce up against the wall, held up by the lapels. Bryce is starting to crack.

Bryce: Leave me alone! Get the hell out of my restaurant!

Gideon: Keep it quiet, Bryce! How far do you really want me to take this?

Bryce: Get out of here while you can. The cops are going to nail you for assault...

Panel 4.

Close-up of Gideon's hand glowing with emerald energy.

Gideon: Listen you stupid...

Panel 5.

Tight 3/4 shot of both men, with a glow of emerald energy between them. Bryce's face is contorted in pain as the blast, at such short range, cracks several of his ribs.

Gideon: ... puissant...

Bryce: AAAAAAAAAAH!

Fx: ZZOT!

Fx: CRACK!

Panel 6.

Same as last panel, except Bryce's body slumps to the ground at Gideon's feet. Gideon has a look of shock on his face.

Gideon: ... oh, shit.

PAGE FIFTEEN

Panel 1.

Far shot. Host is spinning and running towards the back office, his cape flowing behind him and around him. He has a look of panic on his face. One of the Leapers is unconscious at his feet. He has his bow in hand.

Host: What was that? A scream... of pain...

Panel 2.

Wide panel. The last remaining Minion cuts Host off at the pass, putting himself between Host and the office entrance.

Minion: Where are you going in such a rush? Are you hiding something in that back room? Something of interest to us? Is that where Gideon hides?

Panel 3.

Wide panel. Host in the left side of the panel, standing nonchalantly (definitely nothing close to a fighting stance). Host's fists are wrapped tight around the bow, glowing with emerald energy.

Host: I don't know what you're talking about. I don't care. Get out of my way!

Host: Now.

Panel 4.

Large panel. In one swift movement, Host flips off an eldritch arrow from the bow, striking the Minion's hand. The Minion fires off a shot as well from the struck hand, but it goes wild from the impact of Host's arrow.

Host: Maybe you didn't hear me.

Bow (fx): ZZOT!

Panel 5.

Full shot. The Minion moves in on Host, who stands his ground. Both men have glowing hands, Host in emerald, the Minion in crimson. Tendrils of each other's energy reach out towards one another.

Caption: Host and Katharta's Minion start building up their energy, realizing that each of them are masters of their particular spheres. They both decide to pull out all the stops, drawing on more energy than they normally do. So much energy that it cannot be properly contained...Tendrils of each magic flare out, attracted to its polar opposite.

Minion: You're fast. But you're young... inexperienced...

Host: And you have no idea how bad I need to get past you.

Panel 6.

An explosion of crimson and emerald energy erupts between the two men, irradiating the entire restaurant in the two colours, like some sort of super-nova. The explosion sends both men flying back from one another a few feet.

Caption: On contact, the results are explosive.

Fx: KA-BOOM!

PAGE SIXTEEN - SEVENTEEN

Panel 1.

Far shot. Back office. Bryce is on the ground, unconscious. Gideon stands over him, unsure of what to do.

Gideon (thinking): Lost control there... Hit him with a blast of energy at close range... I may have killed him...

Gideon (thinking): What was I thinking?

Panel 2.

3/4 shot. Gideon bends over the man, checking for a pulse.

Gideon (thinking): He's still alive... his heartbeat is strong. I didn't kill him. I'm sure I broke some ribs, though.

Gideon (thinking): He's still of use to us. I can drag him out of here, let things cool down and find out where the tablet is.

Gideon (thinking): Where's that partner of his? The one I saw in the vision...Blue Moon's agent confirmed to us there were two of them. Does his partner have the tablet?

Panel 3.

Far back shot, slight bird's eye view. The Big Thug still has Watchman pinned against the wall, grinding his shoulder into his ribs. El Tigre is walking up from behind the Big Thug, both arms in the air in a double axe handle.

Panel 4.

3/4 back shot. El Tigre drops the double axe-handles onto the Thug's back. The Thug is releasing Watchman.

Fx: BAM!

Panel 5.

Side 3/4 shot. In one quick motion, El Tigre pulls out his kukri blade from its sheath into a slash across the Thug's shoulder and arm as he is turning to face El Tigre. Behind him, Watchman is pulling himself out of the wall while cocking an arm back.

Fx: SLASH!

Panel 6.

Watchman tosses a great haymaker, sending the Thug flying across the bar, into and through the far wall. El Tigre ducks under the flying Thug.

Fx: SMASH!

PAGE EIGHTEEN

Panel 1.

3/4 side angled shot of Watchman and El Tigre. Watchman is looking at El Tigre with a look of appreciation. Watchman is holding his ribs.

Watchman: Thanks.

Panel 2.

Larger panel. Far shot. Watchman holding his ribs and El Tigre whirls around. The other Big Thug is running, body leaning forward towards the two.

Watchman: Look out!

El Tigre: Oh. I got it.

Panel 3.

Full shot. El Tigre drops to a crouch, taking the Thug's arm, and using his own momentum against him. The Thug is starting to look unbalanced and surprised.

Panel 4.

Far shot. El Tigre follows through from last panel, throwing the Thug through the picture window.

Panel 5.

Far shot. Host is pushing himself up from his knee (one knee to the ground). The Minion stands about 15 feet away from him, energizing his hands again.

Minion: So, you do have some power, youngling, but you face one of the Order. Prepare to meet your master!

Panel 6.

Tight 1/4 shot with the Minion's face in the foreground. Silver has her gun pointed at the Minion's temple. The gun is also in the foreground, with Silver's extended gun arm putting her in the background.

Silver: I don't think so, unless I'm your master.

Silver: Power down now.

Panel 7.

Silver: I've had enough of this!

Silver: Do I need to break your fingers to ensure your co-operation? Don't try and see how far I'll go to end this.

PAGE NINETEEN

Panel 1.

Far shot. Host watches Silver, smiling weakly. He is on his feet now. The Minion is powering down, dropping his arms limply to his sides.

Host (thinking): So simply stopped. Sometimes we look at things so complexly.

Host: I think he gets the message, miss. Good job.

Silver: Whatever. Bind him or something. I don't have all day to hold this gun to his head.

Panel 2.

Far shot. Host is creating manacles of emerald eldritch energy around the Minion's hands, ankles and neck. Silver is still keeping the gun to the Minion's head. Gideon is making his way through the door, carrying Bryce in his arms.

Host: What the hell is going on in here?

Gideon: None of your business. This is private. But if you need to know, he hurt himself. I'm helping him out.

Panel 3.

3/4 shot. Host is checking the man's pulse. He is angry. Gideon is annoyed.

Gideon: He's not dead. What am I supposed to be? A murderer?

Host: What did you do to him?

Gideon: Got carried away and hurt the guy. Broke some ribs. He'll live.

Panel 4.

3/4 shot. Host has a hand on the man's carotid artery. Host is looking at Gideon disapprovingly.

Host: You "broke some ribs."

Gideon: No less than what his goon was doing to us.

Host: Point taken. You're likely to have some charges brought up against you. This is a wealthy man.

Gideon: When dealing with people like this, the end justifies the means.

Panel 5.

1/4 shot of both men. Host's eyes are narrow, studying Gideon, trying to determine what Gideon is doing here.

Host: "People like him"? The media lumps you and your menagerie into some sort of category, too. What's to say I don't turn you in myself?

Gideon: The truth.

Gideon: If you knew what was going on you'd be behind me one hundred percent.

Host: You don't know what this guy's done, do you?

Gideon: If he's involved in what we're after, he's slime.

Panel 6.

Large panel. Far shot of the entire scene. One the Minions is in emerald chains, everyone else is knocked out. The heroes look worse for wear despite the victory. Watchman is shaking El Tigre's hand, while Stick watches on. Host is talking to them. Bryce is lying on a table near Gideon. Silver and Dale are talking to one another.

Watchman: You're quite the fighter, El Tigre. You have some good moves. You remind me of an old friend of mine.

El Tigre: Thanks, Watchman. Thanks a lot!

Host: Sorry to have blown your cover, Sean. If I had known...

Watchman: It was just a matter of time before someone came gunning for this guy. Who'd have known all of these people would come at once. We really should compare notes.

Silver: You didn't get anything on film, did you? Some help you've been to us.

Dale: I know, I know. Hard to film anything with giant men trying to bash my brains in...

PAGE TWENTY

Panel 1.

Full shot. Gideon is picking up Bryce. Host stops him.

Host: Where are you going? The police are going to arrive shortly.

Panel 2. Gideon stops to look at him incredulously.

Panel 3.

Gideon continues picking Host up. Watchman is moving in on them.

Host: Wait a minute!

Watchman: Let them go, Host. They're wanted. They have to fight this their way.

Panel 4.

Gideon gives Host a trusting look. Watchman looks on, a half-smile on his face.

Gideon: I know where you live, Host. I'll be giving you a visit.

Watchman: Host, you should try working on the other side of the law. You'd understand this all much better.

Panel 5.

3/4 shot. A flare of green energy goes off on Gideon's back, burning away something that had been there but couldn't be seen, some sort of magical bugging device.

Gideon: You didn't need to bug me. I'm going to need your help when we get back.

Panel 6.

Host puffs out his chest, resting his hands heroically on his hips in an act of defiance. Stick is stepping forward between Gideon and Host. Silver is right behind him. Gideon now has Bryce in his arms.

Host: Bryce stays with us.

Stick: No, he doesn't. He's got lawyers. We don't have the time to play any games with them. He's the shortest, quickest link to his partner Bryan and their tablet.

Silver: We don't have the time or the inclination to slow our search.

Panel 7.

Far shot. Watchman fires off a cheesy pointed finger at them, while Host looks at Watchman, frustrated.

Watchman: Let them go, Host. They'll be back. In fact, Bryce is probably safer with them. It'll be public knowledge what's happened here. We can't stop that. There'll be other heavies gunning for double B.

Watchman: I have a feeling about them. I'm putting my trust in them.

Panel 8.

Close-up shot of Watchman's face. His brows are furrowed. He is dead serious.

Watchman: Don't misplace it.

PAGE TWENTY-ONE

Panel 1.

Full shot of Watchman and Host, 3/4 shot of El Tigre, Gideon (with Bryce), Stick, Silver, and Dale. Watchman is holding Host's arm in a vice-like grip.

Watchman: We'll handle the police. Good luck.

Panel 2.

Overhead angled shot. On a rooftop, blocks away, under a canopy of dirty laundry, the team turns to Gideon. Bryce is lying on the rooftop.

Stick: What the hell was that, Gideon?

Panel 3.

Stick is facing Gideon, pointing a finger at him, leaning forward to look imposing. Bryce is looking up at them. El Tigre is looking down at Bryce.

Gideon: What was what?

Stick: You beat the crap out of Bryce!

Gideon: Come on, he's going to think we're playing good cop/bad cop with him.

Bryce: No chance of that: you're all crazy.

El Tigre: Thanks for the vote of confidence.

Panel 4.

3/4 shot. Stick has his hands off to the sides. Gideon is eyeing Stick accusingly, as he walks off. El Tigre is reaching for Gideon to stop him.

Stick: All we had to do was bring him along if he didn't have the tablet. You didn't need to break the guy.

Gideon: If you're going to question my methods, or my sincerity, I'll do this alone.

El Tigre: Come on, Gideon.

Panel 5.

1/4 shot of Silver.

Silver: I don't want to talk about this in front of him, okay? Enough of this bickering!

Panel 6.

3/4 shot. Gideon is smiling and looking at Silver with his arms crossed. He's stopped walking away. Silver looks adamant.

Silver: Whatever happened, happened. We have Bryce and he's going to lead us to the next tablet. We're on the next phase of this.

Panel 7.

Silver has her face in Gideon's in this 3/4 shot. Gideon is slightly recoiling, surprised by her outburst.

Silver: But hurt anyone else like that, Gideon, and so help me you'd better run! We don't have the luxury of making mistakes. This could have cost us.

Panel 8.

Far shot. Katharta stands in the manager's office at Independent News. He is looking down at a TV set with a report of the incident at the restaurant.

Caption: At the Independent News studio, Katharta is watching the news report by the Independent News crew of the debacle at Octavian's restaurant. He has his arms crossed.

Katharta: It seems that I have overestimated my own people.

Panel 9.

Close-up of the television. A female reporter is standing in front of Octavian's.

Reporter: It appears a battle has occurred at the restaurant called Octavian's in downtown Winnipeg today. Hi-Tech Henchmen apparently attacked members of the radical parahuman group that were responsible for the recent theft and murder at the Winnipeg Museum of Antiquities. On the scene was a government agent for the Canadian Super Team, Host, and former super-hero Watchman. They had this to say:"

PAGE TWENTY-TWO

Panel 1.

Close-up of the television. On the screen: Close-up of Host speaking into the reporter's microphone. Watchman stands next to him.

Host: The parahumans were apparently here to dine when Hi Tech Henchmen attacked them without provocation. Thank God Watchman and I were here to prevent any innocent bystanders from getting injured.

Panel 2.

Same as last panel except Watchman is speaking this time.

Watchman: It's a shame that it seems more important to Hi Tech Henchmen to bring these parahumans in at the expense of innocent lives. They should be ashamed of their behavior here, in a public place.

Panel 3.

3/4 shot. Katharta turns the TV off with a remote control.

Katharta (thinking): My people made a blatant public display without my authorization... and failed miserably. In fact, Hi Tech Henchmen was made to look like fools in the public eye... on our own television station!

Panel 4.

Close-up shot of Katharta's hand pressing a button on his phone.

Panel 5.

Far shot of Katharta, 1/4 shot of Bill Bannerman in the doorway.

Bill: Yes?

Katharta: I just saw the footage, Bill. I am very displeased. I allowed you to work for me when I took this station over. And look what you allowed to air.

Bill: I... I couldn't allow the other TV stations to upstage us on such a huge story. It needed to be reported.

Panel 6.

1/4 side shot of both men. Katharta is in Bill's face. Katharta maintains a cool demeanour.

Katharta: This is my station. What you will and won't allow is of no consequence. This is your first and last warning. Portray Hi Tech Henchmen in a bad light again...

Bill: But I didn't...

Katharta: ... and I will ensure you never work in this industry again. Get out of here.

Panel 7.

Far front shot of Katharta on the left side of the panel. Bill is on the right, opening the door, with an eye on Katharta.

Katharta: And that reporter of yours you had on this story... let her know that today was her last day. I trust you to keep a tighter reign on the employees... for your own sake.

Next issue: We head down to New York, New York where our heroes continue their search for the next tablet. Will our team in fact get their hands on Bryan and Bryce's tablet?

Editor's Note

SYMKA and the World of Genetics are the intellectual property of Sean McGinity - all rights reserved.