AUTHOR'S NOTE: Credit for this chapter goes to my friend and frequent collaborator on my fanfics.
Chapter One: Traitor
General Hawk blew out a sigh as he looked at the building in front of him. It wasn't a Joe HQ, but the base of another global defense force. Much like G.I. Joe, the Global Justice Network was a government funded organization that was designed to combat extraordinary threats to the world. However, they preferred to fight in the shadows instead of in the open like the Joes did. While Hawk had no quarrel with the GJN, he wasn't pleased with recent news of what the big wigs at the White House had ordered him to do. The order he was reluctantly forced to carry out was that G.I. Joe was to become a branch of the GJN effective immediately. The Secretary of Defense told Hawk personally it was that so both the Joes and the Network could better combat any and all threats to the world, but the General was wise enough to know better. It was all about cutting costs.
The sad truth was that Joes were becoming old news, and the government was getting tired of paying for them as a separate military force. True, Cobra was an ever-present danger, but the current White House administration did not take the terrorist organization as a serious threat and had been giving less and less funding to the Joes over the years. If anything, Hawk should've seen this coming sooner, but he always believed that the country that he and his troops always fought for would always have his back. But now, it was evident that G.I. Joe had become just another check to write off, and the old General didn't know how to deal with this revelation.
"Everything okay, sir?" a voiced asked as a hand touched his shoulder.
Hawk turned to face Scarlett, his right-hand woman and one of the finest operatives among the Joes. He had brought her along for what he said as a way for the head of the Global Justice Network to get to know one of the Joes' top soldiers up close and personal. However, he had a different, more personal reason for bringing her along: support. Like Hawk, the rest of the Joes weren't too happy about this merge either, and many of them feared that they would lose their jobs in the process. Hawk wanted to personally make sure that the GJN's director would not discharge a single Joe from the team in order to save a few extra dollars.
"If by 'fine' you mean 'a total nightmare,' then yes, everything's fine," the General replied.
"None of us are on board with this merge, but if G.I. Joe has any hope of continuing, then we need to go through with it," Scarlett said. "Like you always say, General: 'A good soldier knows how to adapt to any situation.'"
Hawk couldn't help but grin at that. Scarlett's optimism always seemed to rub off on the other troops, including the General himself.
"Spoken like a true solider," Hawk complimented.
"Uh, excuse me, sir," came a tentative voice from behind them.
The two Joes turned around and saw a young, red haired girl standing before them. Both Scarlett and Hawk instantly knew this girl from just her reputation alone. This was none other than the teen superhero Kim Possible, and from what they knew of her, they were impressed. From time travel to ninja monkeys, the teenager had accomplished feats that would've made even Snake Eyes feel some admiration for her. Kim was among first wave of a new generation of young heroes that appeared several years ago after the Joes were formed and was a worthy torch bearer for the never ending war against the forces of evil. While it was interesting meeting a possible future Joe, Scarlett couldn't help but notice that something was a tad off. The young hero had a sidekick/boyfriend by the name of Ron Stoppable, who was always at her side, but she was here alone. Then again, the boy could easily be away on a family matter or simply wasn't needed for whatever Kim's reason being here was, so Scarlett brushed her suspicions aside.
"You must be General Hawk. It's an honor to meet you in person, sir," the young hero greeted with her hand out stretched for a handshake. "And to you as well Ms. O'Hara. I'm a huge fan of yours."
"The pleasure's all ours, Ms. Possible," the General replied as he returned her handshake. "We've been following your work closely. You could make a fine Joe someday."
"Me? A Joe? Are you serious?!" Kim said with an excited smile before quickly composing herself. "Uh I mean, thank you, sir!"
Just then, one of the GJN's top agents, Will Du, stepped out of the building's front doors to greet the two Joes. However, when he saw that Kim was here as well, he was taken aback, which was odd to Scarlett when she noticed the young agent's expression. According to their information on Kim's recent activity, she was working closer with the Global Justice Network, so why was he surprised to see her? Agent Du quickly recomposed himself before greeting the Joes.
"It's a pleasure to meet you in person, General Hawk," he began. "I'm Agent Du. Dr. Director asked me to escort you to the conference room."
Will then turned his attention to Kim.
"We weren't expecting you, Kim," he said. "Something up?"
"Oh, it's nothing Will," Kim answered. "Wade just wanted to update his network with some of your files on Gemini. If we're going to be working together more often, then we need to exchange more data between us."
"Of course. I'll take you to our data room after I escort the General and Scarlett to the conference room," the young agent answered.
With that, Will lead the trio into the building. While Kim had been inside the GJN's headquarters several times the past, this was the first time both General Hawk and Scarlett. They walked past the staff and agents of the Global Justice Network as well some of rooms that held a multitude of weapons and devices the GJN used in their never-ending war against such villains such as Gemini, a global terrorist and the head of the organization known as WEE, as well as the twin brother GJN's very own Director. The Joes had never faced Gemini or any agents serving under him, but from what they knew of him, he sounded like someone trying to be the next Cobra Commander. It always amazed Hawk and the rest of G.I. Joe the other villainy that seemed to crawl out of the darkness over the years.
Cobra was among the first of the forces of evil that rose out the shadows to bring chaos and death to the world around them. Soon after Cobra's declaration of war came another wicked empire, only this one came from the stars: The Decepticons. A race of savage, sentient machines led by their unstoppable leader, Megatron. After the Decepticons were awakened from four million years of hibernation under the earth's crust, they had only one intention: to drain the planet of its natural resources to fuel their seemingly endless war with the heroic Autobots. Had it not been Optimus Prime and his band of heroic warriors, Megatron and his ilk may have conquered the planet years ago.
However, it wasn't just forces from space that threatened humanity, but also forces from the very bowels of the earth itself. Months after the war between Autobots and the Decepticons was reignited here on Earth, another war began to wage under the planet's surface. A trio of massive, hideous creatures had crawled out of the shadows after centuries of hiding and unleashed what could only be described as a living nightmare onto the human race. The monsters' names were D'compose, Tendril and Metlar, otherwise known as the Inhumanoids. Fortunately, a brave group of humans who called themselves the Earth Corps rose up and fought against the Inhumanoids for the safety of the earth.
If there was any saving grace to any of this madness, it was that whenever a new evil arose on the planet, there would always be some force for good there to challenge it, almost as if the balance between the two sides had to be maintained in some way. From the city of Townsville to the town of Amity Park, a new wave of heroes like Kim were appearing all across the globe. In a small town in California, reports of a magical girl were starting to come in while tales of winged creatures came out of New York as well as reports of what could only be described as humanoid turtles in the sewers, even sightings of a dragon were reported. In France, a duo of heroes called Ladybug and Cat Noir guarded the city of Paris. In Mexico, White Pantera and his son, El Tigre, protected the crime ridden Miracle City from an assortment of villains, that is, whenever El Tigre himself wasn't causing trouble as well. There were even reports of a sort of silver knight being spotted across the globe as he protected citizens from what could only be described as shape shifting aliens.
Soon enough, Agent Du brought the two Joes to the conference room, where Dr. Director's presence was lacking. The moment they stepped inside, they found a pair of familiar faces sitting at the long table. They weren't Joes, but they were heroes all the same: Herc Armstrong and Sandra Shore, the leaders of the Earth Corps. Ever since the government cut all funding from Armstrong's group, Sandra's company had been privately funding the Earth Corps' war against the Inhumanoids for years. Since the Earth Corps had their own funding, it begged the question: why were they at this meeting as well? Upon seeing Hawk and Scarlett enter the room, Herc and Sandra stood up from their seats and approached the Joes to greet them.
"I see you got roped into this crap to, General?" Herc asked as he shook Hawk's hand.
"Sadly, but I thought the Earth Corps wouldn't be sharing out fate as well," Hawk replied. "Isn't your team privately owned?"
"The White House threatened to shut us down after our latest fight with Metlar destroyed over thirty blocks of downtown L.A.," Sandra explained. "It was either join the GJN or face jail time."
"They screwed us too when they wanted to save some money," the General replied. "You can thank your old buddy Senator Masterson for that."
Herc let out an irritated groan upon hearing that. Masterson was a U.S. senator who had been a constant roadblock for not only the Earth Corps, but the Joes as well. The man was more concerned about keeping his job, and more importantly, his paycheck, instead of making sure that the world was kept safe from the likes of the Inhumanoids or Cobra. No doubt that he had a hand in the decision to merge G.I. Joe and the Earth Corps with the Global Justice Network just so he could have a few extra dollars to line his pockets.
"If you'll all wait here, the director will join you shortly," Will informed the group before turning to face Kim once again. "If you'll follow me, Kim, I'll show you to the data room."
As the young superheroine followed the agent out of the room, Scarlett still couldn't the shake this strange sense of suspicion she felt toward Kim's actions. It was odd for her to suspect someone who had all the making of a future member of G.I. Joe of doing something nefarious. Then again, these gut feelings she normally had were right most of the time. However, before she could think of a reason to excuse herself from the room and at least follow Kim and Will to the data room to see if her hunch was right or not, Dr. Director stepped into the room.
"I'm glad you could all make it here on such short notice," she began. "If you'll all take your seats, we can begin."
As instructed, the representatives from both teams took their seats as Dr. Director made her way over to the front of the room so she could address the group.
"First off, I'd like to apologize for this merge of our three teams," she started. "I know it's an inconvenience for you all."
"If by 'inconvenience' you mean 'total pain in the ass,'" Armstrong audibly muttered.
"But allow me to assure you all that both you and your respective teams will be keeping your jobs," the director furthered, ignoring that comment as she did. "The GJN has always respected your work and have no intention of stepping on your toes. But this government-ordered merge is going to happen and I want you all to know that if there's anything the GJN can do for you, we'll be more than happy to provide it. Now that we're a united force, Cobra, the Inhumanoids, the Decepticons or anyone else that wish to do the earth any harm will have to take us all on."
"If that's the case, then why isn't Optimus Prime here?" Sandra questioned. "Or any of the metahumans for that matter?"
Dr. Director paused for a moment, looking slightly taken aback by the question as she did. The leader of the Global Justice Network quickly composed herself before speaking.
"We thought it would be best to work with our most experienced teams," she explained.
"In other words: you don't trust them," Scarlett gathered.
The director didn't answer her right away. She instead narrowed he single eye at the redheaded Joe. There was nothing she could say to bounce back from such a statement that was no doubt true. Rather than try to make an excuse at this point, Dr. Director instead gave them the truth.
"We don't know what they're capable of, Ms. O'Hara," she confessed sharply. "The Autobots have access to advanced technology and they refuse to share it with us despite their supposed alliance with the human race. As for the metahumans, they're unpredictable and do more harm than good half the time."
"Well, I can't speak for the kids, but I've worked with Prime and the Autobots in the past, and they don't trust us with their tech because they know we'd use to kill each other with it," General Hawk defended.
There had been several times in the past where Cobra and Decepticons had united to crush their common enemies, only to be defeated by the combined efforts of the Joes and the Autobots. There was a time when the general was hesitant of working alongside the robotic aliens at first as well, but after seeing Optimus and his troops risking their lives to protect both his soldiers and the civilians that were caught in the crossfire, he realized that they were true friends to the special unit and to the world at large.
"The Autobots have been keeping us safe from the Decepticons for years, we have no reason to fear them," Scarlett added on. "As for the metahumans, sure, some of them may be inexperienced, but they mean well. Maybe if they had some proper guidance, then maybe they would cause less collateral damage."
"GJN has neither the time nor the budget to babysit a bunch of children with superpowers," Dr. Director protested. "As for the Autobots, until they start sharing their tech with us, then I have no intention of including them in any of our operations."
"You're not the trusting type, are you, Doc?" Herc surmised.
"The last time I trusted someone, it was my brother, and I ended up losing an eye because of it," the head of the Global Justice Network harshly reminded him.
"Speaking of whom, you didn't mention him when you were listing off our enemies," General Hawk commented. "I assume you have him in custody then?"
Again, another pause came from the director, only this time it was one of remorse instead of anger. Finally, she spoke up once more.
"No, Gemini is dead," she admitted, much to the surprise of the group. "And we know exactly who did it."
Before anyone could press her for further answers, she pulled out a folder and tossed it onto the table. Hawk was the first to pick it up and see the contents that were within it. It was several pictures that showed the images of Gemini's body lying in a bed of serpents that slithered around his now lifeless form while a sword sat sheathed within his chest. Other pictures showed images of several WEE agents gunned down and dismembered, no doubt trying to fight back against the only enemy capable of such savagery.
"Cobra..." Hawk seethed through his teeth before he handed the folder over to Scarlett.
"An anonymous source lead us to Gemini's headquarters where we found this massacre," Dr. Director explained, holding back sadness in her voice as she did. "We suspect that the attack happened three days after we got our tip."
"Which was no doubt Cobra wanting you to see their handiwork," Scarlett stated. "Cobra Commander doesn't like competition, and you only get two options with that monster: join him, or stay out of his way."
"And it looks like Gemini didn't get the memo," Herc said as he looked through the folder. "I may not have personal experience with Cobra like the General and his troops do, but I know well enough not to screw with Cobra Commander."
"If he doesn't like any rivals, then why does Cobra Commander alley himself with the Decepticons?" Sandra questioned.
"Because he's not stupid," Hawk answered bluntly. "Unlike the Autobots, the Decepticons give weapons to Cobra in exchange for resources they can convert into energon. Besides, he knows better than to try to pick a fight with Megatron."
"In any case, finding Cobra Commander is now major priority for us," Dr. Director said. "Not only did he steal the weapons and technology that WEE had in their arsenal that could prove dangerous to the world, but that bastard also murdered my brother, and I want to see him either in chains or in a body bag."
"So that's why you were so on board with this little merger, because you knew we'd have the experience to fight them," Scarlett realized.
"Precisely," the head of the GJN confirmed. "Gemini may have been a dictator in the making, but he was still my brother, and I want Cobra Commander to pay for what he's done. Not only that, but Cobra wouldn't make a move like this unless they were planning something big, and I want to know what exactly there up to."
As Will led Kim through the halls of the GJN, the young agent noted something off about his friend. Normally, Kim would usually strike up a conversation with him and ask how his life was going, but instead, she remained silent for the entire walk toward the data room. Once they reached it, Will punched in the code to give them access into the room, thus allowing them to step inside. The data room was really a series of computers that housed data that GJN compiled on every person of interest to them, weather they be human or otherwise.
"Well, here it is," Agent Du said. "I can help by pulling up the files on Gemini if you'd like."
"No big, I can find them myself," Kim replied.
"Are you sure? There's a ton of files to go through," the young agent pointed out. "I could pull up them up "
Will's words were cut off when he felt a sudden sharp pain shoot into his chest. He looked down to see Kim's hand holding a knife that was lodged in between his rib cage. Will looked back at his friend's face and saw only a hardened face glowering back at him. He couldn't speak, let alone scream, for the young hero had stabbed him in such a way that the second she would pull the knife out, he would be dead within seconds from blood loss. His eyes could only say the only word that ran through his now dying mind: why?
Kim yanked the blade from Will's chest, letting his body fall to the ground before reaching for the wrist device that was hidden under her sleeve and activated a signal that scrambled the room's security feed before it could alert the rest of the personnel within the base. Once she had done that, Kim reached into her pocket and took out a flash drive that she quickly placed into a USB port before searching for the files she had been ordered to find by her leader. It didn't take Kim long to find the files she was looking for and thus began to download them into her flash drive after bypassing the security codes that guarded them. As she waited for the files to download, she received an incoming transmission from the organization she had recently joined.
"Kingsnake to Diamondback, status report?" a voice ordered.
"I'm downloading the Epsilon Files as we speak, sir," Kim answered.
"Excellent," her leader said, "Return to base once you've finished downloading the files."
"Yes, Commander," the teen complied.
However, unbeknownst to the traitor, the unauthorized download of the GJN's private files sent an alert directly to Dr. Director herself. After looking at her communicator and seeing the alert, the head of the spy network gasped in shock, thus causing the members of the G.I. Joe and the Earth Corps to be interested in what happened.
"What's up, doc?" Herc asked.
"Someone's downloading our private files," Dr. Director explained. "But that's impossible!"
"Where's the source coming from?" Sandra questioned.
"Our data room," the director answered. "But the only people in there are Agent Du and Kim Possible."
Everyone's eyes widened upon hearing. No one wanted to say it out loud, but their fears were collectively growing within them. Reacting on those unwanted fears, Dr. Director reached for her COMM link and reached her security team.
"Attention all units, we have a breach! I want all security forces to be fully armed and head to the data room. If you find anyone in there, detain them at all costs!" she commanded.
With that, she made her way toward the conference room's doorway, but just as she reached it, she heard a voice call out to her.
"We're coming with you," Scarlett told her as she, General Hawk, Sandra and Herc stood up from their seats.
"Fair enough," Dr. Director agreed, clearing not in the mood to argue with them.
Together, the united group made their way toward the data room. As they ran down the halls, they could already here the sounds of gunfire and the screams of dying men. Again, Scarlett and the rest of the group didn't want to speak their suspicions out loud, but what it could it be? Scarlett prayed that her hunch was nothing than paranoia from her years on the job and was actually hoping that it was some agent of Cobra like Zartan or Major Bludd who had infiltrated the base and that Kim was current fighting them off to keep their hands off of whatever they trying to steal from the GJN's computers. It was much better than the alternative.
As Scarlett mentally prayed for her theory was true, the group of heroes had reached the data room, where they saw one of the security guards get thrown out of the room before colliding with the wall. Three more guards joined the first one in a pile in the hallway, all of whom were beaten and bloodied, possibly even dead. Seconds later, Kim walked out of the room, covered the blood of the guards and holding a pistol in her hand. Everyone let out a collective gasp in shock and horror upon seeing the unthinkable before them. Why would someone as good and pure as Kim Possible do this? It was all so disorientating to the four of them that they almost didn't realize that she had raised her gun toward them.
"Hail Cobra," she said coldly.
Dr. Director and the others quickly ducked and took cover as Kim opened fire on them. They still couldn't mentally register that the teen hero who had all the makings of a future Joe would suddenly turn against everything she fought and stood for and join the ranks of Cobra. Hawk and the others could throw around theories after they had detained the traitor. Right now they had to focus on stopping her before she escaped with the files she had no doubt stolen for Cobra Commander. Acting quickly, Herc reached out and quickly snatched up one of the dead guard's guns and fired back at Kim, forcing her to retreat into the data room in the process, all the why shooting back at Herc as she did.
The hallway fell silent as Kim slinked back into the room she had just stepped out of. Dr. Director and the rest of the group picked themselves up from the ground before slowly approaching the room together, gathering up the weapons of the fallen guards for protection as they did. But when they stepped into the room, they only found the body of Will Du laying in a pool of his own blood. Dr. Director gasped in horror at the sight of her top agent dead on the ground, still reeling from the thought that it was Kim who slew him. she attempted to rush over to his body, but before she could get close, Kim suddenly swung down from the ceiling and knocked everyone back with a single kick.
Scarlett was the first to recover and attempted to throw a punch at the girl, but Kim blocked it and roundhouse kicked her in the chest, sending her flying into the wall in process. The red-haired Joe recoiled from the hit and rushed toward her opponent once more, only this time, Kim was prepared. In one swift motion, she drew a knife from her pocket and threw it into Scarlett's leg, causing her to cry out in pain as she collapsed back to the ground. Herc came up behind her and wrapped his arms around her in an attempted to hold the traitor down, but Kim threw her head back and slammed the back of it into Armstrong's face, making him let go and stumble backwards. Kim knocked him out with a kick to the jaw, thus making Sandra rush to aide.
Kim then heard the sound of a safety being switched off of a gun and spun around with another roundhouse kick and knocked the gun that Dr. Director had pulled out of her holster out of her hands. The traitor then threw a punch at the head of the GJN, but her opponent dodged it and in turn threw a punch of her own that was blocked by Kim's quick reflexes before she struck the director with a powerful strike across the face which she followed up with devastating drop kick that knocked Dr. Director unconscious. Kim was about was depart the scene when she heard the sound another gun being cocked and turned to see General Hawk aiming Dr. Director's pistol back at her, all the while his eyes looked at the fallen hero with disappointment in his eyes. In response to the general, Kim drew her own pistol and aimed it back at him.
"Just answer me this: why?" the general demanded.
"Because this what I was trained to do," Kim answered.
Before Hawk could pull the trigger, Kim fired three rounds into the leader of G.I. Joe's heart, making him crumble to the floor in a broken heap. Scarlett cried out in horror as she pulled herself to her general's side just as more security officers ran down the halls to apprehend Kim. However, the young traitor took out a flash-bang grenade and threw it down, vanishing in a flash of blinding light. When the light faded away, Kim was long gone and the general was bleeding out from his wounds.
"Medic!" Scarlett screamed out in hysterics. "Medic!"
After her escape, Kim had managed to sneak back to Cobra HQ, where she reunited with her commander. The young double agent had been serving under Cobra since she was ten years old after being inducted into the Cobra youth program by Storm Shadow where she received the finest training in the arts of espionage, sabotage and assassination. She worked as a superhero for so long, gaining both the public's and the metahuman community's trust until the time Cobra Commander called upon her to carry out her ultimate mission. Nothing mattered except the success of this one mission. Not her family, not her friends, not even Ron mattered to her. Only Cobra and victory over its enemies.
"Excellent work, Diamondback," Cobra Commander congratulated, using Kim's codename as he did. "Not only did you bring me the Epsilon Files, but you also left G.I. Joe leaderless in the process."
"It was my pleasure, sir," Kim replied.
"Forgive me Commander, but there is no confirmation that General Hawk is actually dead," Destro pointed out.
"Dead or not, it doesn't matter, Destro," the head of Cobra reasoned. "Now that we have the Epsilon Files, victory is as good as ours."
"As you've said several times before," Zartan chided with a smirk. "And look where that's got us."
"I've been planning for this moment for years," Cobra Commander explained, hiding his anger toward his agent as he did. "I've waited so long for the moment to strike, and the best part is that our enemies will be destroyed by their own hands!"
He then looked over to Cobra's chief scientist, Dr. Mindbender, as Kim handed him the flash drive.
"I leave you to work on the tools for our coming conquest, Mindbender," he said, "You have three days."
"Three days?! But Commander, even with the equipment we took from our raid on WEE, my team and I still wouldn't have the time to build all of the weapons!" Mindbender reasoned.
"Then focus on the weapons needed to take out our most powerful enemies," Cobra Commander ordered before turning his attention to Destro. "Send word to the Decepticons. Tell them to be ready to intact phase two of our plan the second we initiate phase one."
"It will be done, Commander," the arms-dealer compiled.
"And what of our other allies?" Baroness questioned.
"Tell them to be ready as well," her leader answered. "I don't want a single chance of error from anyone, not when we're this close."
"And I, sir?" Kim inquired.
"I have a special assignment for you, my child," Cobra Commander replied. "Tell me, how much do you know about Danny Phantom?"
Okay, so I feel like I need to answer two questions some people might have.
One: "Why start another story when your others aren't finished?" I fully understand the frustration some of you may have with this constantly happening, but there is a reason for this. My mind works in a way to where if I get an idea it'll fester in my head until I have no choice but to get started on it. Now the thing is that when I write, I want to be fully focused on the story I'm writing. I don't want my mind to get scatter brained and risk the quality of it dropping.
Two: "Really? Secret Empire? Why adapt a dumpster fire of an event like that?" Don't worry, we're not gonna make the same mistakes that Marvel made. We're mostly following the premise of a hero seemingly betraying what he or she fought for and joining a terrorist organization hell bent on world domination. In fact, as you may have seen, there is a little bit of the JLA story "Tower of Babel" thrown in here as well, so no need to worry, we know how awful Secret Empire was and we're not gonna repeat the same bullshit that it pulled on us.
DISCLAIMER: Kim Possible, American Dragon: Jake Long, Gargoyles and Star vs the Forces of Evil are owned by Disney, G.I. Joe, Transformers, Inhumanoids and ROM is owned by Hasbro, Danny Phantom, El Tigre and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are owned by Nickelodeon, The Powerpuff Girls is owned by Cartoon Network and Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir is owned by Zagtoon.