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Interlude Twentyfour point One, The Cowboy Gets his Butt Kicked

The Cowboy moved across the street toward Tina. She was back out under the lights when he had told her not to be there.

Suspicious, the Cowboy pulled out a pack of Marlboro's from his vest. 'Surely she wasn't this stupid', he thought, the Cowboy knew that word of what happened to Mohawk was on the street. 'Could be a trap,' he whispered to himself and looked around the area.

He didn't see anything, but Tina certainly looked more nervous than alluring.

He sighed, and lit up the cigarette chuckling at how they called them coffin nails. Into the light he stepped, crossing the street. Tina shivered in the night air and caught his movement out of the corner of her eye. First she thought, 'Finally, some action to get me off this corner,' then recognition of the man swept across her face.

"Hu..hi, Cowboy," she said.

"Don'tchu Hi me, with yer thin lips an' scrawny legs." The Cowboy was upon her quickly and grabbed her arm. "Didn't I tell yew I didn't want ta see yew out workin on my street?" The smoke wafting out from the dancing cigarette which looked like a conductor's wand in his mouth.

"But we told her otherwise," came a voice from behind him. The Cowboy turned to face the newcomers. He recognized them immediately as the villians the papers called PowerFist and SpeeDemon. SpeeDemon was the closest, only about ten meters away, PowerFist was six meters behind that. PowerFist spoke again, as he walked closer, "You're a hard man to find, especially for someone causing so much trouble."

"Then I reckon she needs to learn who ta listen to," said the Cowboy releasing her with a gentle shove that put her on the ground. "I take it yew've been looking fer me?" he asked.

"That's right, 'partnuh','" said PowerFist coming up next to SpeeDemon. "There are some things you just don't do in this town, and cutting in on the Dark Lord's business is one of them. Believe me, we learned that the hard way. Now, I'm afraid it's time for you to learn that lesson."

"So yew cusses gonna stampede me, eh?" said the Cowboy readying himself. "Then do I get hired ta work fer the Dark Lord too? I'm a helluva more valuable ta him alive than dead. But if means taking out one of ya then that's fine with me. Who's the lucky volunteer that gets clubbered?"

"Well," smiled PowerFist, "first we gotta beat you up some, you know, as a sort of lesson. Then, you might get hired."

"PowerFist," said SpeeDemon. "He is doing something, I feel heavy!"

"Right, let's see about that," shouted PowerFist as he closed in. Behind him, SpeeDemon struggled to get his heavy legs moving.

PowerFist swung a steel-encased fist and somehow missed. It seemed that for a split second, the Cowboy just wasn't there. He fired another punch, and this time it seemed like the Cowboy flickered, then both the Cowboy and PowerFist screamed. For an instant, both PowerFist and the Cowboy were trying to occupy the same space and space time reacted violently.

SpeeDemon continued on course for the downed Cowboy.

The Cowboy stared up at the oncoming SpeeDemon, and readied himself to deliver a punch. "That thar was a helluva mule kick, come git some of yer own!" he taunted.

Seeing the belt around SpeeDemon's waist he commented, "That's a purty belt ya got there, jess like the one on that feller I fought a couple a days ago, he your kin?" The Cowboy dropped to his knees and struck the sidewalk.

The sidewalk ruptured in several places and SpeeDemon staggered just a step, "You have seen this design before?" he asked in a Russian accent.

"Yeah, some feller in black. Real sidewinder that ran his mouth all the time, I got a score to settle with him and his friends," the Cowboy barked out. Crouching down, he picked up a sizable chunk of concrete and hoisted it back in a defensive posture.

"Da, I know him," SpeeDemon said, "The Wanderer."

"We've got a score to settle with them, too," said PowerFist coming up next to SpeeDemon. "But first, we've got to give you a beating. Unless you want the Dark Lord on our backs," he directed this last comment at SpeeDemon.

"Nyet, I do not want that," said SpeeDemon.

The villians closed in on the Cowboy.

SpeeDemon swung first, but missed. PowerFist's punch was on target.

The Cowboy blocked PowerFist's exuburant but unschooled blow, which left him open to SpeeDemon's rabbit punch.

PowerFist tried to capitalize, but the Cowboy was able to block his attack.

The Cowboy lashed out with a fist of his own catching a surprised PowerFist on the chin.

The Cowboy fought valiantly but sank beneath a hail of blows. As he faded into unconsciousness, he heard PowerFist say, "In this town, no one cuts out the Dark Lord. You're out of the pimp business. You want in on the action, find Reno." Then PowerFist administered the coup de grace.

Visions of cheese fries climbing a chocolate mountain, planting celery stalks with cherries on top danced across the Cowboy's mind as he remained unconscious after his major league butt kicking at the hands of PowerFist and SpeeDemon.

Last Updated 7 August 2002