An alarm clock, which sounds more like a submarine siren, blares out into the darkness. Two eyelids flip open like window shades retracting. The eyes stare up at a perfectly white ceiling. SMACK! A fist silences the ringing alarm clock.

Count Nemesis sits up in his bed and yawns. He is bare chested, wearing nothing but a pair of black boxer shorts and purple slippers. Sunlight lightly shines through a nearby window onto his flawless muscles. A lazy growl emits from the foot of the bed. Count Nemesis reaches down and strokes a mane of fur belonging to a fully grown male lion.

Besides the enormous cat, the bedroom of Count Nemesis is surprisingly normal, clean, and well decorated. Tasteful art hangs on the walls. Photographs of The Count with friends and loved ones sit on his nightstand and dresser.

Count Nemesis stands and stretches, then departs for the bathroom to prepare for the day. He does not notice Bossman peeking his sunglass-concealed eyes in through the bright window pane as he passes by.

About an hour after waking from his slumber, The Count finds himself waiting in line at his local coffee shop. This particular morning the line for coffee is an abysmal twenty-two rubes deep. This lingering will not stand for someone as significant as Count Nemesis.

The Count feigns scratching a hard-to-reach itch and lightly presses a hidden button on his robotic appendage. A small compartment opens within his metal forearm and a miniaturized cannon pops out. Count Nemesis taps the man waiting in line before him. The unsuspecting patron turns around to see a weapon of unspecified destructive power pointed in his direction.

One by one, the coffee shop’s patron­s part the line, making way for Count Nemesis to approach the counter. An unimpressed teenage barista waits behind the register as The Count looms. She holds out his coffee simply labeled “Count.” Count Nemesis proudly grins. He takes the coffee and shakes his robot arm above the beverage. A hefty amount of sugar falls out of the canon’s muzzle and into the drink.

Count Nemesis departs the coffee shop as the other customers watch stupefied. The Count pays them no mind; otherwise, he would have noticed Decimator hiding behind a puny newspaper at one of the coffee shop’s tables.

Finally at work, Count Nemesis spends his morning ripping Portal and Angel’s writing and artwork to respective shreds. He leans back in his desk chair, gladly presenting comic book pages labeled Captain Crawfish to the two creatives. Entire panels of the pristine artwork have been X-ed out with dripping, blood red marker. Portal raises his hands in anger, as if to strike The Count, but thinks better of it. Angel of Justice appears deflated, almost on the verge of tears. Count Nemesis sits back unconcerned, almost relishing in their frustration.

Fed up with their whining, Count Nemesis crumples the artwork into a nearby trash receptacle. Portal and Angel depart, presumably back to the drawing board. The Count subsequently stands from his chair and opens his desk drawer. He takes one step in, his foot and long leg disappearing into the small space with uncanny ease. As The Count enters his desk drawer lair, his computer screen flickers. The face of Kill-Switch flashes across the flat monitor, observing Count Nemesis depart for his private quarters.

Count Nemesis spends his lunch break eating a magnificent submarine sandwich, made with the contents of his personal refrigerator. He eats at his command center surrounded by monitors. Some project world events, others monitor the goings-on of the office outside his drawer. While devouring his Italian sub, The Count holds a screw driver in the other hand. He is putting the final touches on a new robotic arm model, one that incorporates sharp retractable finger claws.

Hovering above The Count in his drawer of solitude is none other than Whisper, Delightful Greeting Cards’ resident teleporter. No one else could have gotten into Count Nemesis’ hidden fortress without him being alerted to an intruder.

After lunch, The Count spends an exorbitant amount of time pitching his latest scheme to take over the world to his fellow co-workers. Today’s plan involves hiding subliminal hypnotic messages within the company’s comic books. It makes little sense to the simple-minded employees but is perfectly logical to Count Nemesis. During his speech a delivery girl arrives with a package for Stan. Alter-Ego signs for it but does not recognize Ice Queen beneath the uniform and hat. She lingers in the reception area, listening to Count Nemesis’ speech.

At last, the work day is over. Count Nemesis returns home to his domicile. As soon as he opens the front door to his house, his pet lion playfully lunges at him. The Count wrestles with his jungle cat companion. Outside, Bossman watches the adorable scene through a window. He smiles to himself and steps away from the house. He continues on down the suburban street, contemplating his next move.

Later that night, at the offices of Delightful Greeting Cards, Bossman holds an afterhours meeting. Each super villain employee has assembled around the conference table. Bossman begins to speak: “Based on the fact that we were able to follow Count Nemesis undetected all day, I motion that he be deemed unqualified for villain status.”

“Oh really?” a disembodied voice questions.

The group of villains look around startled. They then hear the sound of a button click, and Count Nemesis materializes in the room from behind the camouflaged shimmer of a cloaking device. He lifts his finger off of a depressed button on his robotic arm and beams confidence at the astonished criminals.

“I’ve been well aware of your spy games all day. And I’d like to know what it is that you’re after.”

We’d like to know what the villains are after, too! Stay tuned for new chapters every Tuesday and Thursday right here on!