Chapter 1: Readjustments

2018

In a townhouse on Staten Island, the three inhabitants began to hurriedly pack their car due to the fact that only just a day ago, a giant alien ship hovered over New York City, taking with it The Armored Avenger, Iron Man.

"Mom, do we really have to leave?" Jake Abiko, who just recently turned 14, asked as he placed his suitcase into the trunk. Naomi, his mom, just shot him a look.

"You remember what happened 6 years ago. There's no way in hell I'm letting you two be caught up in that again." She quickly responded as she shut the trunk of their car. Ian, the youngest at 12, looked at the two of them.

"So we're heading to Grandma and Grandpa's why?" He asked as he brought his bag to the backseat.

"To get somewhere safe." Naomi responded as she rushed back inside to grab some last-minute things, as her sons followed her back inside.

"Then what are we going to do there?" Jake asked in a bit of an impatient tone. Naomi quickly turned around with an annoyed face.

"It doesn't matter! Just as long as-…Where's your brother?" She asked. Jake turned around as he too noticed that Ian wasn't there anymore, but he did notice a weird amount of dust on the floor. The two rushed outside to check to see if he was in the car…And he wasn't there. Just as Jake was about to say something, he stopped as a car crash happened just a couple of feet down the road. Then people began to rush out into the street to see what exactly is going on. Then the horror began as suddenly, random people began turning into dust.

"Mom?" Jake asked in a horrified voice. "What's happening?" He then turned to face her…And he truly became scared.

"Jake?" Naomi questioned, as before his very eye, his mother turned into dust. Jake fell to his knees as he didn't know what just happened, but he knew that it was straight up horrifying. He closed his eyes as he waited to be dusted himself…But after a minute, nothing happened. He opened his eyes as he realized that this wasn't a nightmare. This was the new reality. And he could do nothing but scream in horror.

"Jake?!" Mr. Ichikawa, their older neighbor, rushed over as he dropped to his knees and grabbed him by his shoulders. "Where's…Where's Naomi?" He asked the boy, but no matter how he tied to grab his attention, Jake just stared in horror at the pile of dust that was once his family…

(X)

2024

"So, how are things back at home?" The question caused Jake to snap out of his trance of remembering the events that had transpired just 5 years ago.

"Oh, um…It's been, what's the right word, difficult to readjust to things." Jake answered back to his therapist.

"In what kinds of ways?" The therapist asked. Jake was hesitant to answer the man. "Jake, how many times do I have to say this to you? This is a safe place where anything you can say will never leave this room. Patient confidential, that's my number one policy."

"Sorry Doctor Samson." Jake sheepishly apologized.

"And you also know that my second policy is that a first name basis with my clients." Leonard Samson retorted.

"Sorry Doctor Leonard." Jake responded back. It took a minute for Jake to try and find the right words to explain things that were going on in his life. "Well…Mom really hasn't gotten used to it being…Me being 5 years older. She kind of jumps every time that I accidentally sneak up on her. Not that I can blame her really. I mean, the last time she saw me was when I was in high school. And now I'm about to end my first year of college. That shit's got to be freaking her out more than she's letting on. Ian has pretty much been himself since he got back but hearing what happened with the Avengers…It definitely has hit him hard. Hell, it hit us all hard, hasn't it?" Doc Samson let out a big sigh.

"That it most certainly has." He then wrote down some notes, and then focused his attention back to his patient. "Do you still have the nightmares?"

"Not as frequently as they once were." Jake replied. "And before you ask, I dropped out of the Survivor Counseling." Samson looked at him with a hint of both curiosity and disappointment.

"I thought you were making good progress with the group. What happened?" The good doctor asked. Jake looked down at his feet to avoid any looks that he felt would have been difficult to look at.

"It's because…I don't even know myself. I just want to help my family, you know?" Jake had expected some kind of disappointed reaction but was instead with a reaction of understanding.

"I suppose that is good motivation." Doc Samson said, surprising Jake. "The people who were brought back have been having a hard time readjusting to the world they find themselves in."

"So…You're not mad?" Jake asked.

"Mad? Of course not." Doc Samson replied. "Just shows you have a good heart." He then looked at his watch. "Seems like our time has run out. Same time next week?" Jake grabbed his backpack and jacket as he gave a thumbs up.

"Sounds good Doc." He responded as he head out the door. Reaching the outside of the building, he put in his earphones, pulled out his phone, and started to play music. It was the one of the only ways he really knew how to express himself. Choker by Twenty-One Pilots. A song about just trying to keep your head down, dealing with social anxiety, and just being someone who feeling like no one is coming to help you. If that didn't describe him to a t, Jake didn't know what else could. Just as he was about to put his phone away, he got a text from his best friend and "manager", Kerry.

Kerry: Have you hung up those flyers yet? We got to get your name out there!

Jake shook his head as he began to respond to the text.

Jake: DJ Jumpy Jake is a terrible name; I hope you know that.

Kerry was quick to respond.

Kerry: I didn't hear you come up with any ideas. Plus, those flyers were expensive, so hang them up! Mama needs to make money! Plus, if you hang them up, I'll tell you about the gig I got lined up.

"Why did I agree to let you manage me?" Jake whispered under his breath as he texted back.

Jake: Got it, boss.

Jake had unlocked his bike and began to pedal away from the building to search for telephone poles to use as advertising. As he came across his first one, he couldn't help but notice the many flyers of missing persons there were. He knew they were hung up around the first blip from the families that were desperate to find some kind of answers to why their family members turned to dust. Hard to believe that it was purple crazy space alien based on reducing the universe in half to be able to have spare resources. With that kind of power, he could have just doubled resources. But he knew that these missing people had to be reunited with their loved ones, so he hung up his first flyer. He then hopped back on his and continued to pedal.

After 20 minutes, he had hung up plenty of flyers around town, so he began to head home. As he pedaled, he came across a site that he had tried his best to avoid, until he unintentionally just came across it.

It was a recent put up memorial to the hero who gave his life to save the entire universe. Tony Stark. Iron Man. It was a graffiti painting of him in one of his many suits. Many people had placed candles, teddy bears, and other affectionate gifts they could come up with, showing the love that they had for the man who had saved them numerous times. Jake hadn't stopped by yet, because he didn't know if he had the strength to say the words that we wanted to say. Not wanting to be there any longer, Jake continued to pedal.

His ride passed by many different sites he enjoyed. A coffee shop on the corner that tended to have some nice indie groups stop by once in a while. A cool shop ran by this old guy named Stan that was very kind to everyone that stopped by there. There was also this new tech company that began popping up everywhere called Nugent Technologies. From what Jake has seen so far, they seemed pretty harmless. He then drove past by a blank canvas for what seemed to be some kind of new mural. He figured that it would have been a piece for the rest of The Avengers. But there have recently been talks about some kind of new superhero team running around lately, but he figured it must have been rumors to try and keep people calm.

As the bike continued along it's path, Jake's mind began to rush as many thoughts began to make their way into his mind.

The first were obviously about his family. He wondered if they were ever get used to what had truly happened. As well as him. He wasn't the same kid they grew up with. To them, he must have seemed like a complete stranger.

He was also concerned about his future. To be honest, Jake has not put any thought into what he would want to be for his career. Sure the DJ-ing gig was pretty fun, but he knew that it probably wouldn't last for his life. And it probably wouldn't be something that his mom would approve of if she found out about it as well. And whatever thoughts he had were suddenly gone…Because an explosion from the bank knocked him off his bike. As his ears were ringing, Jake tried his best to get a grip of his surroundings.

"Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen!" A voice suddenly called out, causing the confused civilians to look to see who was speaking. And they were shocked to see a man in a green ringmaster jacket with stars printed over it and a top hat with a spinning spiral on it. "We are glad you are able to join us today for our performance! I am The Ringmaster! And allow me to introduce you to my Circus Of Crime!" As soon as he announced that, many different people of all shapes and sizes followed behind him, revealing themselves to the gawking crowd. "For our resident Master of Strength, we have Bruto The Strongman! Bruto, care to demonstrate your magnificent strength to our dear audience?"

"You got it boss!" Bruto responded as he lifted up a giant piece of rubble and threw it on top of a car, crushing the roof in an instant. Jake then noticed that a man had his leg trapped underneath a piece of rubble. He slowly began to him to try and help him.

"Miraculously done!" Ringmaster cried out as he then pointed his can to the next member of his crew. "From the amazing country of Spain, with a burning passion for crime, our very own Fire-Eater!" In response for being called upon, Fire-Eater proceeded to eat a small amount of fire and spit out a huge plume of flame. "Excellent performance, my good sir! Now then, be amazed at their astonishing acrobatics! Presenting, The Great Gambannos!" Two men in purple in black and purple skin tight suits did flips over one another to try and garner a reaction from the crowd. Jake had reached the man as he grabbed a piece of rebar and put it underneath the rubble as he tried to use leverage to lift it up. He struggled as he barely got it to move a couple of inches, as the man managed to slip out. The rebar snapped under the pressure, causing the Circus of Crime to focus on their attention onto Jake.

"Well, seems the boy's trying to be heroico." Fire-Eater jokingly said as his crew began to laugh alongside him. Jake began to raise the rebar to use as a weapon and began to swing at Fire-Eater, but Bruto grabbed his hand and began to squeeze tightly, causing Jake to drop his weapon due to the immense pain that was inflicted onto him.

"Aw, did I break him?" Bruto asked as he let go of his wrist, which enabled Jake to drop to his knees. Ringmaster took a step forward to the boy and took a close look at him.

"Ah, a young man pretending to be a hero! Shame nobody told him that the age of heroes is over, and now it's our time." He said as he looked to his entourage with a sick smile on his face. "Shall we introduce him to our last member?" The members also had sickening smiles on their faces as a woman in a green dress holding a python. "Introducing our last member, the deadly mistress of serpents, Princess Python!" Princess Python let her snake down with a gleeful smile as it started to slither its way to Jake as Bruto held him in place.

"This is going to be fun. Precious has been dying for a snack." She said as the snake inched closer to its prey. Jake froze in fear as it began to slither its way up him and he thought to himself that if he was going to be a snack for a python…This is not a cool way to die. The python proceeded to lunge at him, and Jake quickly shut his eyes to not witness the horror that awaited. But after what seemed like a minute, Jake opened his eyes to see why he wasn't being attacked. That's when he noticed the snake trapped in a blue glowing cage, shocking the members of the Circus of Crime and the gawking populace.

"Death by snake? I have to admit, not really a cool way to die if you ask me." A new voice suddenly said as members of the Circus of Crime looked around to see the source of the interloper. All of a sudden, a red and black blur struck one of The Great Gambannos, sending them flying into a parked car and knocking them out. The other brother was about to react until he felt someone tap their shoulder. He quickly turned around and was met with a man in a red and black suit with gold highlights running across his shoulders and chest, and a black mask exposing his mouth and was equipped with red goggles. "Hi there." The man said as he dashed off faster than The Great Gambanno could recognize. The remaining twin went flying into another glowing blue cage. "Good one, Doc!" He screamed out to his floating teammate.

"Same could be said to you, Whizzer!" She replied as Jake managed to get a better view of her. Floating above them was a girl in a mainly black costume with the right side of her upper torso covered in a magenta color and her left side covered in a yellow color. In the center of her chest was a black and blue hourglass shape. Her face was completely covered in a black mask, with the only thing that was exposed was her red hair. The speedster stopped in his tracks at the mention of his name.

"I thought that we agreed it was Speed Demon! Not Whizzer!" He shouted out.

"It's not a heroic name!" The floating girl shouted back. "Why not Blur?"

"Nope! It's Speed Demon! No Ifs, Ands, or Buts! Plus, it's certainly better than Doctor Spectrum! What kind of name is that?" Speed Demon shouted, not realizing that Fire-Eater was about ready to set the speedster on fire. All of a sudden, a gold throwing object hit Fire-Eater in the face.

"Now isn't the time to be arguing amongst yourselves." A new voice said as a grizzled man in a black costume, with a red cape that looked like feathers, and a golden bird logo appeared out of nowhere and proceeded to punch Fire-Eater in the gut and then kneeing him in the face, knocking him out.

"S-Sorry Nighthawk!" Doctor Spectrum replied as she rounded up the knocked-out twin into the cage along with his still awake twin. Bruto let go of Jake as he was about to run off.

"You mortals never cease to amaze me." A voice behind him suddenly spoke up behind Bruto. He turned around to come face to face with a woman with black hair and shiny purple armor and a gladiator helmet. Bruto proceeded to punch her in the face…Only to hold his now broken hand as a result of the punch. She then proceeded to pick him up by the neck and punched him in the face, causing him to go flying back into the bank. "I mean, always with the constant arguing. Do you never get tired of the verbal fighting? Back home, we always settled things in a constant of strength, not words."

"Not many of us were on an island of warriors, Power Princess." Nighthawk remarked as he threw a capsule into the face of Python Princess, causing a gas to spew out of it. She coughed heavily because of it, but after a few seconds of inhaling the gas, she was knocked out cold. Ringmaster, seeing his group being defeated before him tried to run away. But he was suddenly picked up by one of his legs and started floating in the air.

"That certainly is true. Mainly of us were raised rather humbly." The man holding Ringmaster replied. He was in a mainly red costume with a yellow cape, yellow boots, what seemed like golden underwear, an atomic symbol on his chest, and a red domino mask.

"Who gives a damn how you were raised?!" Ringmaster shouted. "You ruined everything you simpletons! And I swear, if we ever meet again, I will destroy everything you hold de-" That's when the floating man dropped Ringmaster. As he began to fall, Nighthawk then rushed forward and timed it perfectly to where he kicked Ringmaster in the face, causing him to be knocked out and fly backwards a bit, landing on some rubble.

"Good work Hyperion." Nighthawk remarked. Hyperion then began to land beside the hawk themed hero.

"I'm surprised you were able to give an actually compliment." Hyperion commented. Nighthawk kept his rather stern expression.

"It wasn't." He replied. The superpowered team then began to come together as the public stared in wonder at this new team. Hyperion noticed this and then turned to them.

"My friends, I am sorry that were not able to come sooner to stop this crime from happening. But I promise that will change. The heroes that we once looked up to and called The Avengers are no longer with us. They made the ultimate sacrifice to not only save us, but the rest of the universe from a genocidal mad man. And while we may have not known them, we promise to keep up the promise that they gave to us! We promise to keep the innocent safe from those that seek to harm those unable to protect themselves! To fight the battles they couldn't! This is our promise to you! And when you see The Squadron Supreme, know that you are safe!"

The crowd began to go wild as the speech ended and they began to swarm The Squadron to get better looks at these new heroes. Nighthawk hated it while Speed Demon was absolutely loving the attention as he was taking constant pictures with the new adoring fans. It was around that time that the police showed up to take the Circus into custody. Jake watched on from a distance. He had to admit; this team was certainly charismatic. He then began to search for his bike for a minute and then he found it…underneath a piece of rubble.

"Damn it." He muttered to himself as he stared in disappointment. He then tried his best to get it out from the rubble. But no matter how much he tried, there was no way to get it out. Then, the rock began to be surrounded by a blue glow and lift up in the air. It was moved a couple of feet away from the bike.

"Sorry about your bike." Doctor Spectrum said as she landed beside Jake. He then knelt down beside it to inspect the damage that it sustained.

"It was getting old…But it was still reliable." He commented as he picked up one of the broken handlebars. "I don't suppose one of your powers is making a new one?" He then asked. Doctor Spectrum shook her head.

"If I could, I would." She replied. "I can only make constructs, so it wouldn't be as good as the real thing."

"It was worth a shot." Jake remarked. Doctor Spectrum looked back at her team and then back at the now broken bicycle.

"Do you have anywhere you need to be? If you want, I can give you a ride." She asked. Jake looked at her in a skeptical manner.

"Give me a ride? Seriously?" He questioned. "You would really do that to a stranger?" She shrugged in response.

"I feel bad, you know?" Doctor Spectrum responded. Jake thought about it for a couple of seconds.

"My mom always said never to accept rides from strangers. Don't really know if that would apply to superheroes." He joked. Doctor Spectrum had to hold back a chuckle.

"That was totally cheesy, you know that, right?" She asked. Jake nodded his head. "So, where to?"

(X)

After getting dropped off by the superheroine, Jake placed his broken bike leaning against the garage door, he couldn't help but be a bit saddened by the fact that it was wrecked beyond belief, not only because of the sentimentally value, but also because he knew that it was going to be a pain getting places now. He took a bit of a deep breath as he opened the door to his house. Once inside, he heard noise coming from the kitchen and decided to go in there to talk to who he knew that was in there. He saw the woman in her scrubs making herself some food for her late shift at the hospital.

"Hi mom." He said. His mom then jumped in surprise at the sudden arrival of her now eldest son. She turned around to face him. "Sorry, didn't mean to scare you." He said in a rather sheepish voice.

"No, it's okay." Naomi replied. "I'm just still not used to…Older you, I guess I would put it." Jake merely shrugged it off.

"I get it." He said. That was when his mom noticed a smudge of dirt that was on his cheek.

"Mind if I asked what happened?" She asked.

"Oh, you know. Some crazy people dressed up like they were part of the circus tried robbing the bank I was riding past, then a new superhero team showed up and put a stop to them. But that was after I was almost eat by a python that was controlled by a weirdly hot woman. And then my bike got destroyed because of it." He said in a nonchalant manner. Naomi shook her head.

"What has this world come to? First, it was getting turned into dust. Then it was finding out that a number of Avengers died. Then that how thing in Westview. Now this." She remarked. Jake hung his head.

"Yeah. World's become really crazy." He admitted. He then started looking around in curiosity. "Where's Ian?" He asked. As Naomi went back to packing her dinner, she gave an answer.

"He's having a sleepover with that Chris kid up the street. Which means that you get the house for the night. Now, no crazy parties, is that understood?" She asked. Jake then proceeded to cross his chest.

"Scout's honor." He remarked. She then raised an eyebrow.

"I thought you never wanted to be a boy scout?" She joked. He then chuckled. She then walked over to him and hugged him. "Just promise me you'll be safe, okay?"

"I promise." He responded as he hugged her back. After a while, the two broke off the hug and Naomi went on her way to her job at the hospital. Jake head back up to his room. It still felt weird being back in there sometimes, but at least it was home. He proceeded to lie down on his bed as he was exhausted form the events that took prior to him arriving back home and was about ready to fall asleep…Until he heard a knocking on his window. Looking over, he was less than thrilled to see the black and blue hair of his manager sitting outside his window.

"You going to let me in or what?" Kerry asked, though it was very muffled. Jake pretended that he didn't hear anything, which got her a bit annoyed. After a few seconds, he chuckled to himself as he opened his window and Kerry quickly scampered inside. "Glad to see you are dead. Didn't know what I would do if my money maker was taken from me." She said as she hopped inside.

"Yeah, that's totally the way you greet someone after they just got out of a fight between superheroes and an evil circus trying to rob a bank and was almost eaten by a python." Jake sarcastically said as Kerry strolled her way onto his bed and sat down.

"Fine." She said as she rolled her eyes. "How are you doing?"

"I'm glad you-"

"Yeah, so anyway." Kerry said as she began searching through her bag, cutting Jake off. "Care to hear about the gig for tonight?"

"I assume it's the reason that you are here." Jake remarked as Kerry handed him a flyer. Jake briefly skimmed over it and was shocked to see who was hosting the event. "Alpha Nu Zeta?"

"That's right my sweet summer child." Kerry said as she reached her arm around Jake's shoulder. "Staten Island's number 1 sorority hosting a killer party tonight and they need-"

"Holy crap, I can't believe that you managed to get this gig!" Jake excitedly said. "What's the pay?" He then noticed an uneasy expression on her face. "What's wrong?"

"You…Aren't exactly performing." She sheepishly said.

"…What?" Jake confusingly asked.

"I was trying to explain but you rudely cut me off." Kerry said as Jake gave her a look that said, 'Are you serious right now?' "What I was trying to say was that they already booked a DJ for the event, and he needs an extra set of hands to help set up for the event, like taking care of speakers and that other stuff you know so much about." Jake gives her a disappointed look. "Hey, it was the best that I could do."

"I know, it's just…Still a bit disappointing you know?" He said as he sat on his bed.

"Yeah, well, at least the pay is good." She said to try and cheer him up.

"I doubt that." Jake scoffed.

"Yeah, I guess $700 is pretty bad for one night." She said, though she was unaware of Jake suddenly raising an eyebrow.

"…But maybe it's not too bad of gig." Jake said as he suddenly hopped off his bed.

"That's the spirit!" Kerry exclaimed. "Plus, we get to stay at the party, so who knows? You might some girl and finally get laid." Hearing that, Jake shot her a look that somehow went unnoticed by her.

(X)

"First college party?" Kerry asked as she and Jake arrived on the doorsteps to the sorority house with a good number of people already showing up to be there.

"Yeah, haven't been to many parties. Besides birthday parties of course." Jake honestly answered.

"You're going to love it." Kerry asked as she ran the doorbell. "Just don't make an ass out of yourself. And make sure that your drink is always in your eyesight. Or make sure that your pockets are tight. And make sure you knock before you enter a room because you never know who is in there having se-" She was cut off as a brunette-haired girl wearing a grey and blue hoodie with the Greek letter for her sorority opened the front door.

"Hi, I'm Sarah. You guys are here for the party, right?" She asked.

"We're actually here to help out with the entertainment for tonight." Kerry said as she shook her hand. "I'm Kerry, and this right here is my talent, Jake."

"Um…Hi." Jake said as he also shook Sarah's hand.

"Okay, the DJ is going to be set the corner." Sarah said as she pointed over to that location. "His roadie is already over there setting up, but….Word of advice, he is kind of unique." The two looked to her in confusion.

"What exactly do you mean?" Jake asked.

"Sarah, some help over here?" A sorority sister called over to her to help her set up the snack and drink table.

"Be right there." Sarah replied. She then turned back to go help out finish up setting up the party.

"Well, seems like you're about to meet a new friend." Kerry said as she began to walk off. "I'm going to go…Network with potential clients. You go help finish up set up, cool? Cool." And with that, she wandered off leaving Jake utterly confused.

"Gee, thanks." Jake remarked as he strolled over to the DJ stand and saw someone bent over the back of a speaker.

"Screwdriver." The guy mumbled as his hand fumbled about trying to grab it, but each attempt proved to be invalid. Jake raised an eyebrow as he was through off by the slightly modulated voice that came out of the guy. He then grabbed it and proceeded to hand him the screwdriver. "Thanks, whoever you are." He mumbled as he unscrewed the back of the speaker.

"I'm Jake, I'm supposed to help you out with set up?" Jake introduced himself. The roadie stood up and Jake was a bit thrown off by the guy's appearance. He was slim and of average height, a black hoodie covered up by a spiked vest with ripped up jeans, different kinds of bracelets that helped to show off his many different tattoos, and black studded shoes. But the most defining feature of the guy was the mask that he was wearing. It was a black studded with an LED visor that had X's for eyes.

"Oh shit, really?" He asked as suddenly his electronic eyes quickly switched to questions marks, then they shifted into exclamation points. "I'll be damned! Cheap bastard finally heard my requests." He said as he extended his fist out for a fist bump. Jake looked at it cautiously, but then decided that it wouldn't hurt to do it and quickly fist bumped him back. "Call me Wrench. Know anything about speakers?"

"I DJ part-time, so I happen to know a few things." Jake replied as he shrugged his shoulders.

"Really? Good to know." Wrench said as he replied went back to work on the speaker. "DJ Dipshit barely knows a thing about this kind of stuff, hence the reason why he hired me."

"Is DJ Dipshit really his name?" Jake asked he bent down to help him out. Wrench looked at him with an electronic expression that read as, 'seriously?'

"I wish. It's something stupid like The Trapster or something like that, I can barely be bothered to remember it." Wrench remarked.

"Got it." Jake said as he focused on the speaker and grabbed a couple of wires that were out of place to try and fix them. "So, is that outfit kind of like what the guy makes you wear or something?"

"What do you mean?" Wrench asked as his expression once again switched to questions marks. Jake looked back at Wrench with a confused expression.

"Well, it just seems like your outfit is something a roadie would wear, you know. Like to match the talent in terms of the get-up?" Jake asked. Wrench shrugged his shoulders.

"Nah man. This is pretty much what I wear." He remarked casually.

"Even the mask?" Jake asked he had finished put the wires in place.

"Yup. Can't going around with the mask on, otherwise the ladies would constantly faint as I walk by due to my...Impeccable looks. " Wrench joked as his mask winked.

"So…Why exactly do you wear it?" Jake once again questioned.

"I'll never tell!" Wrench mocked as he continued to work. Jake figured that it probably would be better to not press him to answer. After a couple of minutes of messing around, the two finished their work. "There we go! I think this bad boy is ready to go!" Wrench exclaimed as he looked out into the house. "Whoa, that's a lot more people than I expected."

"Sure is." Jake commented as he also peered out. "Kind of makes me glad that I'm not performing tonight."

"Yeah, bet you would have made a total ass out of yourself." Wrench remarked as walked out from behind the set-up. "I'll let DJ Talentless know his set-up's ready, then I'm going to be getting many, many beers. You want one?"

"Oh, no. I'm good." Jake quickly answered back. The expression of Wrench's mask changed to a pleased look.

"That just means more for me! I knew I liked you for some reason!" Wrench remarked. "Guess I'll be seeing you later, new bestie!" He said as he walked off, leaving Jake confused for the second time that night.

"Uh, sure." Jake said as he looked around, noticing that he barely recognized any of the people there. He figured that it would probably be best to try to get know some people. He made his way through the party trying to find Kerry to see what kind of hijinks she managed to get herself into. He then accidently bumped into an African-American male with a varsity jacket with the number 3 on it.

"Watch where you're go-…Jake?" The guy asked as he turned around and saw who it was.

"Marcus?" Jake asked in surprise as Marcus gave him a bear hug.

"Holy crap, I haven't seen in a while man!" Marcus exclaimed.

"Yeah, it's certainly been a minute." Jake responded. The two were best friends in middle school, but lost touch with one another once they reached high school. "See that you made it onto the football team."

"Managed to get a scholarship and became the wide receiver." Marcus said in a nonchalant manner. "You still do the music thing?"

"Whenever I can get a gig." Jake replied trying to act cool. "But not for tonight. My, and I use this term very loosely, manager just got me here to do some mechanical stuff for the guy performing tonight."

"Seriously?" Marcus asked.

"Yeah. Met the guy's roadie. He's…pretty unique." Jake responded. Marcus raised an eyebrow at that statement.

"In what kind of way?" He asked. Jake was about to respond, but they were cut off as the girl from who opened the door to him walked over.

"There you are!" Sarah exclaimed as she kissed Marcus on the cheek.

"Sorry babe, was just catching up with an old friend." Marcus said as he tried to hide his blush. Sarah then looked back and forth between the two guys.

"Oh, didn't know you two already knew each other." Sarah stated. Jake shrugged his shoulders.

"It's okay." Jake said. "It was middle school, so there's no way you could have known about it. So anyways, how long have you two been together?" The two looked at in a loving kind of fashion.

"High school sweethearts." Sarah admitted. "Started sophomore year and we haven't looked back since." Jake couldn't help but smirk a bit.

"Well, congratulations you two. Hopefully you'll-" Before Jake could let out another word, the entertainment for tonight finally came onto the stage.

"Hi there, party people of all ages!" He enthusiastically said, to which he was met with a less than enthusiastic crowd. "Alrighty, that's what I like to hear! I'm Doc Mic, as in Microphone and not the name, but anyways I'm here to get this party started! If you liked my performance, go ahead and follow me on social media and tips are greatly appreciated!" He then started to play some songs that were…Less than desirable for a college party.

"…This guy sucks." Jake muttered aloud. Marcus nodded in agreement.

"This is the last time I am letting Carolyn pick out the entertainment for these parties." Sarah muttered under her breath. The three of them proceeded to walk outside of the house, where Kerry was waiting for them on the doorstep.

"I was wondering where you were." She said to Jake as she handed him an envelope filled with his payment for the night. "As soon as I met the dude, I knew he was going to suck, so I advise that we make our way to somewhere besides here." She then noticed the two-extra guest alongside Jake. She pointed to Sarah. "You, I recognize." She then quickly shifted her attention to Marcus. "But I certainly do not recognize."

"Oh, right." Jake mumbled. "Marcus, this is my manager, Kerry. Kerry, my best friend from middle school, Marcus." Marcus then lent his hand out for a handshake.

"Nice to meet you." Marcus said. Kerry hesitantly shook his hand.

"Likewise." She replied. After the awkward greeting, Kerry then turned her attention back to Jake. "So, shall we blow this popsicle stand?" Jake raised an eyebrow at the question.

"You booked this event and you don't even want to stay?" He asked. She then folded her arms.

"Oh yeah, because I would so want to hear shitty music played by a DJ that looks like he barely knows what he's doing." She replied. Just as Jake was about to interject, a new voice chimed in.

"Looking for a new place to party?" Everyone turned their attention to the source. "Luckily for you guys and gals, I just so happen to know some cool places." Wrench said as he walked up to them and his LED visor switched to a winking expression.

"Wrench, what are you talking about?" Jake asked. Wrench then pointed in a direction.

"There's a construction site not too far from here that a lot of people tend to use for a party spot. Figured we might drive by there and see if we could crash a party or not. What do you say? You in? You can even bring these random guys…Oh, I'm Wrench by the way." He said as he waved to the group.

"I am not too sure about this." Marcus suddenly spoke up. "Some random guy with, I must admit a pretty cool mask, is offering us a secluded spot for partying? That sounds a bit dodgy."

"Thanks for the compliment." Wrench gleefully said as his expression turned to a pleased one. "But come on, what's the worst that could happen?" Jake pondered for a bit.

"It wouldn't hurt." He said. "Plus, we could just leave if we aren't really feeling the party."

"That's what I'm saying!" Wrench exclaimed as he hurried over to a van parked on the side of the road and opened the panel door. "Come on, let's go. In and out. 20-minute adventure. It'll be fun!" The four looked at each other, then Jake shrugged his shoulders as the four entered the van. After a 10-minute drive, they arrived at the site. Wrench opened the panel door and gestured as if he was a doorman. "Your party site awaits, my good sir!" Jake got out and proceeded to do a similar gesture.

"Oh, why thank you my good sir!" He joked along. Soon, everyone got out and Wrench locked the van. "So, where exactly would a party be here?" He asked. Wrench looked around and soon a disappointed look was on his mask.

"Damn. Seems like a dead night tonight." Wrench sadly admitted. Marcus scoffed.

"Isn't that great. So we just drove here for nothing?" Marcus questioned. Jake was about to step in-between them.

"Hey, it's not that ba-" But before he could finish his sentence, Jake suddenly fell through a loose cover of a hole in the ground. The group rushed over to the opening and looked down in horror.

"Jake?!" Kerry screamed down into the hole, but they were met with silence.

"OH SHIT, MAN!" Wrench screamed aloud as he began to freak out. "WHAT THE HELL DO WE DO?!"

"I don't know!" Marcus replied. "Um…Find a rope and one of us climbs down to go get him!" He quickly said. The group began running through the site trying to search for something to try and help their friend. After a couple of minutes, their efforts came up with nothing. They regrouped back at the hole

"How the hell does a construction site not have a rope?!" Kerry angrily asked as she threw a rock pretty far.

"Goddamnit!" Wrench screamed as he picked up a sledgehammer that was lying about and just started beating a wall that still remained intact…at least until Wrench started beating it.

"Okay guys, crazy idea, I think maybe we should call 911." Sarah suddenly said. Wrench quickly looked at her.

"Sure and have the cops arrest us for trespassing on private property! That's a great idea!" He responded.

"Well, what else are we supposed to do then?!" Marcus shouted.

"I don't know!" Wrench shouted back. The walked away from each other, knowing that fighting wouldn't accomplish anything. There was a good minute of silence, before Wrench raised a good question. "Are those headlights coming our way?" The group looked where he was looking and saw multiple headlights heading straight into the construction site. In what seemed like a matter of seconds, the vans suddenly surrounded the party goers. Half-a-dozen men with guns in gas masks suddenly got out and held the college students at gun point.

"What the hell?!" Marcus asked as the group held their hands up. One of the men began to zip tie their hands together and caused them to kneel on the ground. All of a sudden, one of the doors to the van opened up and a man hopped out. He was wearing a grey trench coat and a hat obscuring his face. On his left arm, he had a logo of what looked like an eagle that was perched above a globe.

"Sssso, it ssseemsss to me that we have a couple of tressssspasssersss on our dumping groundssssss." He spoke, his lisp very noticeable.

"Look man, we didn't mean anything by it." Marcus began to speak up. "We just-" All of a sudden, one of the men hit him in the face with the butt of his rifle. Wrench tried to get up to help him, but he was quickly pushed to the ground and was faced with a gun barrel to his head.

"EEEE!" They began shouting, causing the group to become a bit terrified.

"Now, thisss makessss thingssss a bit more complicated." The man in the trench coat said as he knelt down to look at the face of the now terrified Kerry. "We mainly came by to dessstroy ssssome harddrivesssss. Now we have to worry about the dissspossal of your bodiesss." Kerry was able to get a glance at the eyes of the captor, and she was shocked to see that they almost looked as if they were snake eyes. He then got back to his feet and then began to walk away from them. "Kill them." He ordered the men. They were about to pull the triggers…Until something quickly rose from the hole in the ground.

(X)

Meanwhile…

As Jake opened his eyes, the first thing he could feel was mainly pain. He looked up to the opening where he fell in, it must have been more than 30 feet drop. He was at least glad that he landed on something soft rather than the concrete.

"Guys?!" He shouted out, but there was no response from them. He figured that they must have been searching for something kind of way to get him out of the hole. "Great, that's just great." He remarked as he got up. "Mom's going to kill me for sure if she finds out about this." He tried to look for some kind of way to try and climb out, but there didn't seem to be anything to help him out. Then, he looked for a place to sit down while he waited for the rescue party to show up. That's when he noticed something in the garbage.

He picked it up and examined it. It was some kind of strange white belt with red button like pieces around it, big silver boxes on the sides of it, and on the front was this red fan device that was encased in this oval like contraption.

"What the hell are you supposed to be?" Jake muttered to himself. Figuring it would have been a while before he eventually got saved, he did he was at least going to have a bit of fun. For a goof, he put the belt on to see what it looked like on him. He then noticed a cracked mirror lying near him. He propped it up to get a look as to what he looked like with it on, and he had to admit, he looked ridiculous. But if was being honest that was the fun of it.

Then all of a sudden, the fan on the belt started to spin like crazy and lights started to originate from it. Jake, realizing that this could probably be dangerous, he struggled as hard as he can to get the device off of his waist. But no matter how much he struggled, he wasn't able to get it off. That's when his appearance started changing slowly thanks to the belt. Whatever struggling he once was doing stopped as he watched in amazement as the belt proceeded to make him some kind of suit. He then once looked back at the mirror. What was once just a jacket and jeans became something more.

He was now wearing some black leather under suit with leather gloves and boots that were a light green-blueish color. His chest had some kind of armor on it that was divided up into six overlaying pieces. Around his neck was a red scarf that hung down to his hips. Finally, he was wearing some kind of helmet with a mouth guard that was the same color as the gloves, boots, and chest armor. The helmet had these big red compound eyes and silver antennae that vaguely reminded him of a grasshopper.

"What the hell?" Jake said as he got closer to the mirror to get a closer look at the suit he was wearing. It felt weird, but at the same time…It weirdly felt like it suited him. He then noticed what looked like a heads up display finally starting popping in the eyes of the helmet. All the text were Japanese, luckily Jake was able to understand a good number of what was being displayed. But there was one that really stood out to him, that he read as...

"Jump Shoes?" Jake asked aloud. If what he was reading was true, then that means he finally had a way out. But he wanted to be sure it actually worked. He did a small hop, which resulted in him jumping a good couple of feet. As he landed, his eyes widened in surprise at the distance that he managed to get. "I'll be damned. That's actually pretty cool." He muttered to himself. He then looked up to the entrance of the hole. He winded up his legs and then proceeded to leap as hard as he could. He quickly began to rise out of the hole, and he was able to leap out of it. He then landed on the ground in a manner not too similar to Iron Man…Then he grabbed his knee. "How the hell was he always able to do that?" He asked to himself.

"That'sssss not posssssible." He suddenly heard a voice said. He turned around to see his friends…Being held hostage by many different men with guns. The man in the trench then turned to the gun wielding foes. "What are you waiting for? Get him!" He shouted. A couple of men started to shoot at him. Jake instinctively covered his face to hide from the carnage. They fired upon him, but the bullets had no effect on him. Jake then looked at his suit and was shocked that there were no bullet holes in it.

"I'm bullet proof?" He asked himself.

"Holy shit, he's bullet proof!" Wrench excitedly exclaimed as his mask's expression changed to exclamation points.

A couple of the men threw down their guns, pulled out knives and began to rush him. Jake had some basic self-defense training and he knew how to put up a fight. He proceed to punch one of the men in the face, causing a tube to a pack to be knocked off. The man began choking as if he couldn't breath and he fell to the ground. What shocked Jake the most was the fact that it seemed like the man was dissolving because of this. But he was taken out of this thought as he received a swift punch across the face, but luckily, the helmet took a majority of the force.

Jake then ducked under the attack of one of the men who swung wildly, and then he proceeded to kick the leg out of him, causing him to fall straight to the ground. Jake then proceed to kick him in the face, which surprisingly sent him flying into one of the vans.

"Holy crap!" Jake remarked as he say the damaged he done. Another man tried to attack, but it seemed as if Jake had suddenly developed a kind of, danger sense, and he jumped over the man. He then proceeded to kick the man square in the face.

"Complete and utter imbelclessssss." The man in the trench coat uttered as he began taking off his hat and coat. "If you want sssssomething done right, do it yoursssssself." All of a sudden his right arm began to change into what looked like a cobra and it began to extend to an obscene length. It then attacked the remaining henchmen, causing them to dissolve into nothing. Then he began to change into something truly horrifying. What once was a man, was now a blue and yellow Cobra Man with a red hood emerging from the side of his head.

"What the hell are you supposed to be?" Jake asked as he put up his fists, ready to fight the creature.

"The sssssame can be sssaid to you." The Cobra Man responded as the two began circling each other. "All our intel reported that you were dead, but yet here you are. The Kamen Rider in the flessssssh." He then shot out his cobra arm to try and attack Jake, but thanks to this new Danger sense, Jake was able to dodge out of the way just in the nick of time. As the arm began to retract, Jake grabbed a hold of the arm and began to pull the Cobra Man off his balance. Jake could now add super strength to his ever-growing list of powers, as Cobra Man began to fly right at him. Jake, seeing an opportunity, proceeded to deck Cobra Man square in the face, causing the creature to go flying into the hole that Jake was just previously in.

"Huh…Hole in one." Jake commented to himself as he walked over to his friends and broke their zip ties. "You guys okay?" He asked.

"Are we okay? Dude, what about you?!" Wrench asked. "I mean, you punched a guy and he went flying into the side of a van! And then you took on a Cobra man and won!"

"Yeah…What exactly are you?" Marcus questioned. The group then looked at him in wonder. Jake was quiet as he stared at his hands. Then, after a couple of second, the suit that he was in suddenly disappeared, reverting him back to what he was wearing a couple of minutes before hand.

"I…Don't really kn-" Before he could even finish his sentence, an explosion erupted from the hole that once housed Cobra Man, knocking everyone off their feet. After a minute, they were able to collect themselves, and Jake gave a pretty good suggestion. "RUN!" And with that word, the group began to scatter in different directions to get away from what had occurred there that night…But not before Wrench grabbed a couple of the hard drives that these guys were supposed to get rid of…


Hello there readers! My name is AssassinRider2, the writer of what you just read, The Heroes Time Forgot. I hoped that you all had a great time reading what I hope to be an epic crossover between two of my favorite franchises of all time! What I want to talk about is upload schedule for this story. I am working on another story called Hero of Love & Peace, and I hope to be able to flip between each of the stories. So if I am to be realistic, this story will be updated in a month to two months. But with that out of the way, if you have any concerns, do not be afraid to ask a question. I will be able to respond instantly. Now then, for a technique I use with my other story.

*New update: Hi guys, sorry I'm late with a new chapter, I've been busy with school. Hopefully I can find more time to start writing again.

Next Time: After a terrifying night, our group comes to get to discover a horrifying truth that lies just beneath the surface of their town. But just what threats will they have to face in the future? Find out next time!