Determined hands, guided by a brilliant mind, worked tirelessly, completing final touches. The last circuits being completed, the whole of the husk being welded together into its final, beautiful, perfect form.
Lex Luthor permitted himself only a spare second to wipe the sweat from his brow before returning to work. Months of planning, and an entire lifetime of unrestrained ambition were about to be brought to culmination.
"Now, you're perfect!" Lex's voice carried a hushed awe as he stood back to admire his handiwork. He mused that this must have been what the fictional 'mad' scientist, Dr. Frankenstein, felt as he toiled in his laboratory that fateful night, working diligently on the body of a lifeless husk whose birth to life would signal his transition from mortality to godhood. Of course the good doctor, while ambitious for his day, was clearly naïve. The power to give life was a power held by any common doctor.
No, the true qualities of a god were far greater, grander, than such mediocrity. Ultimate power, ultimate knowledge, immortality; these were the traits of a true god, traits that he would soon posses.
"The perfect, super powerful, immortal body; a suitable place for me to spend the rest of eternity." The body in question lay flat on a kind of operating table, surrounded by assorted instruments and equipment found only in a handful of places on the entire planet, for this was no mere human husk. The body in question was an almost perfect duplicate of the nano-tech android first developed by the late Professor Ivo, though it had undergone some minor facial reconstruction to now carry Lex's own unique visage, as opposed to the otherwise featureless head on the original android.
"How ironic," Lex mused as he began walking over to a nearby control panel to retrieve a large cable that had, till now, lay harmlessly amidst the horde of electronic devices scattered about the place. "Years of plotting, hundreds of millions spent on Cadmus R&D, and none of it bore fruit. No, it's a lowly employee of Lexcorp, Prof. Ivo, creator of Amazo, who we have to thank for my impending godhood." Even as Lex spoke, he connected the large cable to a kind of outlet attached on the left side of the android's head.
"That was the last piece I needed." Lex's monologue was interrupted by a dark voice coming from the other side of the room. The voice belonged to a familiar masked man bearing the symbol of the bat. If this arrival came as any surprise to Luthor, it was not revealed through his facial expression, or his tone of voice.
"Got it all figured out, have you?"
"When you and Atom worked together to stop the first Amazo, he showed you the blueprints, and I suspect you have a photographic memory." Batman recounted.
"I'm too modest to boast." Lex merely shrugged off the accusation as if being showered in praise.
"The real purpose of Cadmus was to give you super powers." Batman concluded.
"And to ruin Superman's reputation." Lex finished as he stepped down from the raised platform upon which the dead android lay. "Imagine how sweet it will be when I save the world from 'the menace of the Justice League'. Now, when I kill Superman, they'll build statues in my honor." Lex's lips seemed to almost drink in the delicious irony of his statement.
"Maybe next time." Even as Batman had began to speak, he had already produced a batarang which he hurled, all in the same instant, straight for the head of the grey husk laying on the table. Batman's aim was true, but his shot was intercepted as Luthor's hand flew up in the air, catching the projectile inches from its target. As intended, the weapon exploded with enough force to take a man hand off.
"That… was uncalled for." Luthor spoke as he lowered his unfazed hand down to try and flex the minor pain out of its joints, revealing his digits to be miraculously unharmed.
As the shock appeared in Batman's face, Luthor moved to grab a nearby tray full of tools and swing it at the Dark Knight with inhuman strength, knocking him to the side. Batman rolled with the force, bringing himself back up to his feet just in time to see Luthor running straight at him.
The bald businessman attacked the masked hero with a series of punches that he easily dodged. Reaching into his utility belt once again, Batman produced a gas capsule that he quickly detonated right in Luthor's face. The capsule in question contained a chemical compound powerful enough to put a dozen elephants into a deep coma.
Luthor was merely taken aback by this attack. Even the famous detective could not account for Luthor's apparent superhuman strength, yet he would not allow this complication to stop him now. Batman acted as best he could to compound upon Luthor's momentary lack of guard by digging his fists as hard as he could into the side of Luthor's face. Yet his attacks had no apparent effect as Lex came back up with a powerful strike that knocked Batman straight across the room, causing him to impact hard into the side of the wall.
"You like?" Lex mused to a groaning Batman as he indicated to his own strength. "It seems that Cadmus has made some remarkable accomplishments with nanotechnology recently. Certainly nothing even close to the brilliance of Dr. Ivo, but I was able to use this technology to give myself super human strength, just in case any of your fellow League members came snooping around while I was working. I was even able to modify it to cure my cancer. A bit redundant I suppose, given my plans, but it just seemed so… tedious to die of kryptonite poisoning before ascending to godhood. Now, if you'll excuse me," Lex moved over to the largely stilled figure, grabbing him by the shoulder as he carried him over to a nearby window "I'm in the middle of a private experiment, and you're trespassing." With that, Lex hurled Batman through the glass window, shattering it, leaving the dark knight to fall down to the street below.
"Hmmph, I wonder if I should have called the police, or the street cleaners." Lex spoke with tremendous satisfaction as he returned to his work.
Shrill winds brought the Batman racing back to consciousness. Even before his senses fully comprehended the speed at which the ground seemed flying upwards towards him, his arms moved on their own, quickly retrieving his grapnel gun from his utility belt and firing upward to the perch of the nearest building for safety.
But even the sharpest instincts are a poor substitute for a steady aim. The grapnel's aim was short, harmlessly and ineffectually impacting and bouncing off the solid side of the Lexcorp building, leaving gravity's pull on the Batman uninterrupted… that is, until a familiar arm reached down to grab the masked hero by his shoulder.
Lex forced down the anticipation in himself as he steadied the last of the equipment. A specially designed headset went over his scalp. The set was connected via a series of delicate cables and wires to a nearby control console, which was in turn connected to the large cable currently leading into the side of the grey android's head.
Lex's eyes focused on the control panel to the side of his chair, making sure the control had been properly set. There could be no room for error.
No. There would be no error this time. Everything had been calculated, recalculated, and then done all over again to ensure that there were no mistakes.
Luthor's hand reached out to activate the controls when a familiar voice shattered his dreams.
"Sorry Lex, not this time."
The sound of the voice opened a flood gate of rage within Luthor's mind. He didn't need to look over to identify the voice's owner.
Sure enough, seven tall, proud figures stood before the very window that Luthor had thrown Batman through. Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Hawkgirl, Flash, J'onn J'onnz, and even the apparently rescued Batman. Luthor had come to intimately know and hate every one of them. Now they were here, now, when he was so close.
"Waller sends her best. Something about you're under arrest for using our space cannon to murder everyone at Cadmus, high treason… I just got so emotional after she said you were under arrest." Flash smirked triumphantly.
"You're finished Lex. You're caught, and this time, you're fresh out of presidential pardons." Superman spoke with authority, and a hint of satisfaction himself.
"No, you won't stop me. Damn you, not this time." Even as Luthor ranted, he pressed down on the activate control on the console before him. In an instant, the headset over his skull began to emit a bright electrical display that lit the entire room. Luthor's eyes went wide with almost unnatural terror as the machines throughout the room roared to life. The console connecting his headset to the cable running into the android announced the analysis of complex data with a series of irregularly beeps at varying intervals.
This lasted for less than a second. From out of the eyes of Superman, twin crimson beams laced out across the room, instantly searing the cables and wires connected to Luthor's headset. The effect was instantaneous. The process seemingly interrupted, the various machines throughout the laboratory powered down with an audible hum, as though disheartened that they were interrupted in their work.
Tense silence filled the room for a moment longer as the Justice League cautiously stepped forward. There was nothing. No movement from either Lex, or the android.
The Flash was the first to reach Luthor, waving his red hand before Lex's seemingly lifeless eyes in an attempt to elicit some kind of response. Yet there was naught but stillness.
"Is… is he alive?" Flash asked hesitantly as Batman moved forward, grabbing Luthor's arm.
"Weak pulse, but steady."
"Well the power may be running, but I can tell you the lights are definitely not on upstairs." Flash spoke with a mixture of humor and horror as he referenced the frozen look of wide terror in the face of Lex Luthor.
Even as the two took in Luthor's condition, two more of the League moved hesitantly to the android.
"What about the android?" Hawkgirl asked, flanked by Superman.
As if on cue, the giant golem rose up in a swift motion. The entire League leapt in terror as the beady orange eyes brightened slightly to life. Then turning towards Superman, they emitted a horrifically familiar, pure white glow as the eyes of the android scanned the last son of krypton.
"Why, I'm just perfect." Lex Luthor's voice echoed from the mechanical goliath throughout the entire room.