Disclaimer: I don't own Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures. Laird, Clarrain, and Brown would enjoy my TMNT toy collection too much.
Author's Note: Doing an edit here. Red turtle suggested giving an exposition on Scumbug and I agree as he's extremely obscure for the average Turtle fan.
I am not sure which one came first, the comic version or the action figure in 90. Essentially in Archie's TMNT Adventures comic (he wasn't canonized/written anywhere else), the man who would be Scumbug was an exterminator hired by Shredder to take care of his sub-base's roach problem. While he was doing that, he was bitten by a random roach and tried to kill it when both he and the roach fell into an open sewer full of mutagen and became a roach mutant.
As he wondered the sewers, he found the TMNT (searching for the Shredder) and got into it with them as he thought them roaches when another byproduct of mutagen (established in the introduction scene), Wyrm, a mutant planarian worm, arrived and wanted to eat both Scumbug (he wasn't called by name) and the TMNT. He and Scumbug fought around the TMNT and ruptured pipes of natural gas and falling, wiggling, power lines. As Wyrm was choking Scumbug to devour him, the lines connected and they seemingly were killed by the explosion. All in one issue, # 10, right before the Rat King's conversion as in the following issue.
42 issues later, he was bought back with Wyrm, with small Wyrms (remember planarian worms, the damaged pieces grow into new worms) feeding off him as he was found by Archie's newly made April rival Macintyre and his cameraman Squirt (I believe that's right). Both mutants went insane with hunger and Scumbug teamed up with the reformatted Wyrm and got killed by turning into crystal by the TMNT's opponent du jour, the Dimension X thief, Toxeem, as they got into the battle. Curiously Scumbug was finally called by his name in that encounter by both Wyrm but surprisingly Raph later on in the issue.
A final funny note, when Archie cancelled the title right before the finale, Shredder was apparently going to resurrect Scumbug as a minion via magic (he got mystical later on in the series). There are plans to print those lost issues, thankfully.
So there is your exposition and edit, back to the actual Author's note.
As I apparently had insomnia because this fic and my research for it were on my mind, I figured to do it in the hours of the morn as it was fresh. As with my expanding horizons this year, I thought it was time to address an extremely obscure character I rather liked in my youth in the only place he got characterized and get my feet wet into this fandom as well. I blame this one sticker I had in my youth and Ken Mitchroney's fine pencils for my liking him (to red turtle as to why I like him). I'm a sucker for good character designs. Also hence my love for the Bane type anti-turtle Slash.
Beta: H.Moth and a possibility for a roach hoard for her to go with the hobos. (Moth—No. Just…no. I only associate with CLEAN hobos, y'hear!)
Timeline: Sometime after TMNT Adventures issue # 10, but before issue # 52 at least.
Chirp, chirp, klak, klak.
I hear more roach-boys crawl past me in the darkness, as I drift in the shallow waters of the sewers. I want to exterminate them; after I rest a bit first. One minute, I hunt one roach-boy and slip and fall into the sewer, the next I see four big, green roach-boys—ready to kill them when that yellow worm freak attacked me. Nearly tried to eat me ,and, on top of that, kill me instead with an explosion. But I'm stronger, for I am the hunter—the executioner—not the prey.
I don't know where I am now. However, I do smell fried fuses and the burnt metal from the pipes, so I haven't drifted too far from where the explosion was. Damn—stupid explosion. I sigh as I fight not to drift into sleep, but I'm so tired. I've been hunting these roach-boys for so long, it's all I can do anymore; I have nothing else. Never had much with women or those high end fancy jobs or life, just killing the roach-boys. I only ever had one sweet gig, working for Saki Incorporated; so much money too.
It won't do me much good now, damn it—I would have done that job right too. Maybe I could still finish the job when I escape from here. Although I was careless there, I didn't see the green slime as I was skipping along into the sewer drenched in it. I was so obsessed with getting that roach-boy, it was at all costs. It was him or me. It had to be, especially after he made a fool out of me. No one makes a fool out of me; certainly not a roachboy.
I feel a nibble. Are those rats nibbling at my fingers, or just more roach-boys? They can try and try to eat me and kill me but I won't submit. They are giving me ideas though, as I am getting hungry. How long as it been since I last ate? I can't think about that now, I have to get out of the water first—just…where to get the strength? I can't think about that now; survival is the key.
For I am the exterminator, the executioner. It takes strength and endurance to survive, as it's needed to kill the prey. To do what no one else will do. Speaking of that, I'm going to gut that giant worm that put me here once I get out.
I'm going to use his long, stretchy fingers as a sling for my broken arm and his buggy eyes as maracas. And that long slippery tongue that tried to cut me and suck on me, I'm going to use that as a cane or a…club or whip to beat him with, and stick it in where his heart should be, just to see how it feels. I almost smile, if I could smile. Funny, I never smiled before. I have smirked in delight as I have killed many a roach-boy, but I never smiled. I want to smile now, so why can't I?
On that, why can't I smirk? Why I can't do a lot of things I used to do? Why…do I have a normal hand and another hand with three fingers? Is this a joke? I'm not laughing. Another thing I never learned to do right, and that's funny, since everything feels like a joke now. At least I'm alive and I'll live. I may not know much of anything, but I know survival but I will survive. I must.
As I grow more determined to live, I feel more gnawing on my fingers and my…new antennae? I can hear and sense things with them now that I'm alone to use them. I hear insects communicating, mating, and plotting to overtake humanity. Filthy insects, I loathe them so. And yet…I am one now or at least half one aren't I? Didn't I read this somewhere in a book long ago, in high school, called "the transformation"? Is that what this is? It doesn't matter, but I'm glad the author of that is dead for if he wasn't...I'd hunt him down and have him see the irony before I feed him to the roach-boys.
That's all I am now, nothing but a bug. Even worse, it's the scum of the earth. Maybe that's what I am now, a scum…bug. A Scumbug. Almost rolls right off the tongue if it didn't sound so disturbing.
I feel the nibblers everywhere now. They are getting stronger, uniting against me. I want to fight back, I want to get up and squish them and feel their little lives snuffed by me, but I can't get up, I can't fight, I can't…I can't…survive.
Is this hell? Is this my punishment for killing all those roach-boys? To be eaten? To be killed?
I can't be killed. I survived the explosion, even while I was being choked by those long, yellow, spindly fingers. I was blessed, yes, but if I was truly blessed, would I have a claw for a hand, would I have antennae that can hear the roach-boys I hate chirp at me, telling me that I am not a man anymore? What am I then? No, I can't think about that, I can't think about anything beyond my survival and what it is that's eating at me.
I use all my strength grabbing with my good hand at my tormentors, and bring it to my new eyes, eyes that can now see in the darkness. It is a worm. A yellow worm with googly eyes, a tuff of hair on its head, and a long sucking tube staring at me. I hold it as long as I can, but my strength goes and it falls to where his big brother sucks on me, on my chest. I can feel them draining me slowly, nibbling, feasting on me.
I don't want to submit but what do I have left? What is there left to cling to? No life, no one to care for me, nothing at all—except the roach-boys. I am not even a man anymore, what am I now?
I was an exterminator, I was an executioner, now I am one of those which I have killed many times over; and last of all, or perhaps most of all, I'm…food.
I may write a following chapter in Wyrm's POV, seeing how I am appreciating him more and more as I age.
Leave a review if you wish and see you in the funny papers.