PlayStation All-Stars

Volume Two, Season One

Episode Four

Revenge of the Rampaging Clown

By Cole Bezotte

At the Zorko Bros. Scrap and Salvage junkyard, Needles sat in his ice cream truck and thought about his previous battle against Ratchet.

"That was a strange fight we put up," he thought to himself, his hat shading his eyes. "I never suspected that Ratchet would go REALLY mad. And yet, I can't help but think about what his eyes must have been fixed on. That's it! Now I remember! He was focusing on that new wrench of his; he was worried that it would break and fall apart. He is completely dependent on the wrench; THAT is his weakness through which I shall defeat him at last!"

Needles started the engine to his truck and drove out of the junkyard, eager to extract his revenge from Ratchet.

Minutes later, an old man entered through the front door of the mansion of the League of Heroes. He lifted a hand at Talwyn Apogee, who was standing nearby, and spoke to her: "You! Come to me! I command you!"

Talwyn's mind was soon struck blank as the old man's hypnotic spell overcame her mind. She slowly walked over to him as she was commanded. She had now found herself transfixed by the strange, inhuman eyes that overwhelmed her will.

"I must see Ratchet at once!" the man commanded.

"At once…" Talwyn whimpered in reply. "Go right in…"

But before entering the main office, the stranger whispered a command to his dazed subject: "Hear my instructions! Remember them! And when the time comes, obey!"

Moments later, Ratchet saw the man at his door and wondered why he had not come for an appointment like his many other previous visitors. "I don't recall settling a meeting with you," Ratchet spoke up. "How did you get past Talwyn?"

"Getting past a mere mortal is no problem for me!" the man replied, taking off a rubber mask. His true face was revealed to be Needles himself.

With reflex-action swiftness, the Lombax seized his Omniwrench and threatened Needles with it. "You dare come here!"

"I'd dare anything to destroy you forever!" Needles replied. "I have come to do battle with you! And if you refuse my challenge, I'll cause such havoc throughout this puny world, that you will HAVE to fight me!"

"You leave me no choice. I defeated you once, and I'll do it again!"

"No, Ratchet! I CHOSE to dive into the river last time we fought. This time, I shall be the victor! Meet me at the park, in one hour! There, we shall test our mettle!"

"So be it!"

The challenge was accepted; and so Ratchet eagerly arrived at the park to meet with the grinning Needles. "He comes!" Needles thought as he faced his angry opponent. "Prepare for battle, Ratchet! And prepared to be vanquished by me and no one else!"

"You deceive yourself, Needles! You should know the old saying: EVIL NEVER WINS!"

With that, Ratchet furiously threw his wrench at Needles with desperate action. But suddenly, with catlike reflexes, Needles side-stepped the oncoming wrench. And, at that instant, the weary Talwyn entered the scene, walking slowly towards Needles.

"The female has followed my instructions," Needles thought. "Now for the rest of my plan!"

Using his magic powers, Needles transformed a nearby tree into a snarling tiger. Then, before Ratchet could retrieve his wrench, he saw the tiger crawling towards Talwyn, ready to spring and attack her. "NO!" Ratchet thought. "I won't let this happen!"

Without an instant's hesitation, Ratchet leapt to Talwyn's defense and attacked at the tiger. And while Ratchet battled the ferocious beast, his wrench lied on the ground, and precious seconds ticked grimly away.

After the tiger was slain, Ratchet suddenly saw Needles using his powers on his wrench, creating a force field over it to trap it. Needles did the same thing to Ratchet, trapping a force field on him and pinning him to the ground.

"I've won!" Needles exclaimed triumphantly. "I've beaten Ratchet at last! No one—nothing—can pierce my force field! You shall never again rise to save another being! And now, I shall have sport with your helpless planet! I shall go and kill every single living being on this earth! After that, I'll come back to finish you for good! You shall be my best for last!"

The triumphant Needles began his rampage as he butchered many innocent people on the streets. With a machete, he slaughtered anybody who was in his sight. He did not care who they were; all that mattered was that he wanted to kill any person. After conquering a certain area, he would use his powers to transform motorcars into ice cream. "What a treat for me to celebrate my victory!" Needles thought as he enjoyed his treat.

Back at the park, Talwyn had fully recovered and saw that Ratchet was trapped. She knew she had to get him out of that force field somehow. She went over to him and whispered to him a secret plan. Only Ratchet understood what she planned to do, and it just might work.

The next day, Talwyn put her desperate plan into effect. Many newspapers were printed, saying that Ratchet vowed to defeat Needles before the end of the week. Once Needles saw the headline, he could not believe his eyes. "Ratchet?!" he thought. "But that's impossible! I trapped him in my impenetrable force field; nothing can get through it! Yet, what if I am wrong? What if he discovered a way? I must find out at once!"

And so, once again Needles went back to the park and saw that the force field was still there. And right next to it, Ratchet stood. "I've been expecting you, Needles!" he shouted to him.

"Ratchet!" Needles exclaimed. "But it's impossible! You could not have escaped! I must remove the force field and see!" And so he did; but he was very surprised to see that Ratchet was still there on the ground. The one he saw before was only a plastic dummy.

"What a trick I pulled on you!" the real Ratchet said as he got back up to his feet. "I'll make sure you don't kill anyone another day!"

"You haven't won yet!" Needles replied. "I shall escape and devise another plan!" With that, he transformed himself into a pigeon and mixed himself in with a nearby flock of pigeons.

"Crap!" Ratchet thought. "I can't tell which one he is! I must not let him escape me again! There's only one way to find out: if there's anything pigeons like, it's peanuts!" With that, Ratchet headed for the nearest peanuts stand and grabbed a full bag. He threw it onto the ground and watched as the pigeons ate all the peanuts that scattered around. Only one of the pigeons rejected them and flew away. "That one is definitely Needles! Now this will be fair!"

Finally, Ratchet threw his wrench as far as he could, and it hit Needles and made him fall down to the ground. He saw that Needles had transformed back to his normal form and had landed into the Blackfield Asylum. He was now held prisoner… but for how long?

NEXT TIME: "THE THICK-SKINNED THUG!"

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