Originals Work Force #3

Stan Lee’s Work Force Book 3, Chapter 1: New Neighbors

The office of POW! Entertainment is abuzz with the hum of the daily grind. The super powered employees are laser-focused on the task at hand, which is to finish a comic book for publication. They bustle around trying to get their respective work done before Stan bursts out of his office looking for an update.

Zip rockets through the cubicles, carrying piles of papers to a destination unknown. She comes terrifyingly close to a collision with Count Nemesis, who tilts back in his chair reviewing comic book pages with a red correcting pencil hanging out of his mouth. He pays no attention to the pink blur as it passes.

Nearby, Portal is banging his head on his keyboard, frustrated with his lack of inspiration. Angel is fidgeting anxiously beside him, waiting for new script pages to fly her way, but things don’t look promising. Ditto rolls by their cubicle, ejecting papers back at Bolt, who chases after him carrying new ink cartridges for installation. Ditto flees toward the elevators, passing by Alter-Ego, who is engaged in an animated phone conversation with the off-site printer. Politenessman leans on his reception desk, reading off a check-list of procedures for him to relay.

Mouse is doing her best to manage the madness. She marches through the bullpen like a general inspecting her troops. She passes Portal and Angel of Justice.

“Portal! Stan wants those rewrites ASAP!” she prods him.

Portal jumps up from his normal resting position hunched over his keyboard, startled by Mouse’s blunt prying. “Yikes, Mouse! I’m working on it! I’m working on it!”

“And what about you, Angel?” she tosses out like a grenade.

Angel’s head snaps up to attention. She frets, unsure if she’s giving the right answer. “Um… gosh… I can’t start drawing until Portal gives me the script…?”

Mouse squints her eyes, scrutinizing Angel’s demeanor. Finally, Mouse responds. “I’ll accept that answer.”

THUD! Everyone stops and looks up at the ceiling. THUD! THUD! THUD!

“Not again,” Portal complains.

BANG! STOMP! THUD! More sounds erupt from above.

“What could they be doing up there!?” Mouse ponders.

CRASH! THWAP!

“How am I supposed to write CAPTAIN CRAWFISH with all that fuss?” Portal asks.

“We’re on a deadline here,” Count Nemesis reminds them without looking up.

“Now you knuckleheads know how I feel most days!” Stan Lee says as he bursts out of his office.

BANG! BOOM! SCRRRRRAAP!

Stan cringes away from the sounds as if the sky itself was falling. “That’s it! Form an investigative party and find out what all the hullabaloo is up top!” Stan orders while pointing an index finger up toward the shuddering ceiling.

Before they know it, Politenessman, Count Nemesis, Zip, and Bolt find themselves conscribed for the mission and stuffed into the elevator, traveling one floor up. Inoffensive music plays from hidden speakers as the four patiently wait for their short jaunt to be over.

DING! They have arrived. The doors slide open, revealing five evil looking super villains in dark brooding costumes. They are each carrying boxes and furniture around a cluttered office space.

The villains freeze, mouths agape, looking at the elevator full of superheroes staring back at them as if they’ve been caught red-handed.

Tune in next Tuesday for the second chapter of Book 3!