A/N: I was paging through the graphic novel when I came upon the Captain Carnage reference. The idea was so hilarious that I just had to write something about it. So, here it is; from my whacky imagination to your computer screens. Enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Watchmen or any of its characters.
The man looked ridiculous, even by supervillain standards. Vermilion tights, yellow go-go boots, bright green waistcoat, orange beret. He looked like a mime on acid. He stood before the shattered store window, the burglar alarm wailing, and struck a defiant pose that made his potbelly jut dramatically over his spindly legs. He shouted in a surprisingly deep voice, "Behold! It is I, Captain Carnage! The terror of New York!" His index finger stabbed out towards the figure before him. "It is I who have vandalized this establishment! I, who challenge you, O caped one, to single combat! Have at you!"
Nite Owl regarded the Technicolor apparition with admirable restraint, biting viciously on the inside of his cheek to hold the hysterical laughter at bay. He'd heard of this guy; if anything, his description toned him down considerably. "I don't think so."
Captain Carnage blinked. "Huh?"
"Look, I've heard of you, okay? I know getting beat up by masks is how you get your rocks off, and I'm not playing. You're just gonna have to settle for the regular old police when they get here." He turned with a swirl of his cape and started to walk away.
"The police? The police?" The weirdo's face turned nearly as red as his tights. "How dare you lump the likes of me in the same category as the common thieves! I'm the deadliest foe you'll ever encounter! I'm your nemesis!" He ran after the retreating hero. "I shall lay waste to the city! I shall make my victims beg for mercy!"
Shrill as his voice is, I can believe it, Nite Owl thought sardonically. A sudden yank at his neck brought him to a startled halt. He spun around to discover his "nemesis" had grabbed hold of his cape. "I demand that you punish me!" the man shrieked.
"No!" Nite Owl yanked the garment free. "Get lost." As he climbed aboard Archie, the dreaded Captain Carnage shook his fist at the masked man's back, spittle flying from his lips. "You'll live to regret this, coward!"
Nite Owl rolled his eyes.
One week later…
Archie's police scanner broadcast a hostage situation in a downtown office building. The place was surrounded with armed policemen. Nite Owl glided the flying vessel to the building's roof and he and Rorschach debarked. Once inside, they took the elevator to the appropriate floor. The sight which greeted them as they entered the office break room brought a groan from Nite Owl's lips.
Captain Carnage stood in all his garish glory pointing a gun at half a dozen befuddled men and women in business suits.
"Aha! The game is now afoot! But be warned," Carnage held up a finger, "this weapon has a hair trigger! Once false move and innocent blood shall spill!"
Rorschach, hands stuffed into his trench coat pockets, leaned towards his crime fighting partner and muttered, "The hell is this?"
"It's that guy I told you about," Nite Owl whispered back.
"Ah. Thought you were joking."
"Stay back, I say!" Though neither hero had moved since coming through the door. "I am deadly accurate with this gun!"
Nite Owl snorted. "That's not even a real gun. It's just a water pistol with shoe polish on it."
The Captain's eyes darted back and forth. "No it isn't"
"Is," Rorschach rasped, "Shoe polish rubbing off on your hand."
"Er, well…yes. But!" he rallied, "It is filled with deadly acid! Yes! One false move and the hostages get horribly maimed for life!" A drop of liquid formed on the bottom of the pistol and dripped onto his shoe. It had a decidedly un-acidy quality to it.
"You actually filled the thing?" Nite Owl asked, incredulous. One of the "hostages" started to chuckle. The Captain seemed to deflate at the sound.
"Well," Nite Owl clapped his gloved hands together, "I'd say our work here is done. Let's go, Rorschach." The partners turned and walked out the door, followed by the increasingly amused hostages who returned to their offices. Captain Carnage stood in the middle of the now empty room, bereft.
"B-but…Wait!" He dashed after them, dribbling water. "I held these people against their will! I've committed a crime! I'm a criminal mastermind, dammit!"
"Only criminal's the guy who sold him that goofy outfit," Nite Owl muttered.
Rorschach nodded. "Heh. Ow!" He nearly fell over as the hurled water pistol struck the back of his head. He rounded on the spindly man, but his partner grabbed his shoulder.
"Don't. It's just what he wants."
"I have assaulted you!" Carnage declared, "You are honor bound to mete justice upon me!"
Rorschach forced his fists to unclench and once again turned away. They neared the elevators, passed one whose open doors were blocked with a hung paper sign declaring: DANGER! SERVICE ELEVATOR OUT OF ORDER.
"Don't turn your backs on me, you charlatans!" The man scurried after them waving his knobby fist. "You frauds! You dare to pass up a golden opportunity and defeat the dreaded Captain Carnage! I will have my retribution! You cowardly sons of whores! You--AAAIIIIiiieeeee!"
Nite Owl spun in alarm. His masked partner stood before the open elevator shaft, its paper warning sign flapping on its broken string. "Rorschach! What the hell!"
Rorschach held his open hands out on either side of him, the picture of false innocence. "What?"
"What do you mean 'What?'! You threw the guy down the elevator shaft!"
Rorschach shoved his hands into his pockets. "Didn't. Pushed."
"Christ!" Nite Owl ran to the open doors and leaned over the abyss. He couldn't see a thing.
"Relax. Only one floor up."
"What about the basement?"
Rorschach paused. "Basement?"
"It's a service elevator, you idiot!" Nite Owl waved his arms. "It goes all the way down the building's basement and probably even a subbasement!"
While Rorschach didn't appreciate being called an idiot, the sight of a man dressed as an owl frantically flapping his arms as if to launch himself into the ceiling was more than worth the insult. Thank god the guy couldn't see his expression.
Nite Owl leaned over the shaft and shouted, "You alive down there?"
From below came the faintest, "Ohhh…yeah."
"Great." Nite Owl pinched the bridge of his nose; no easy feat with goggles on, "Now we have to rescue him."
"Damn right! You're the one who threw him down there."
"Whatever," he snapped, "The point is, he's down there because you couldn't control your temper, so now you have to help me get him out."
Rorschach peered into the seemingly bottomless depths, looked at his partner. "No."
"Fine!" Nite Owl threw up his hands. "I'll do it myself." He swung himself out onto the dangling cables and slowly made his way down the shaft, grumbling all the way. It seemed an eternity before he finally reached the bottom. When his boots hit the floor he discovered he and Captain Carnage weren't alone. The narrow shaft swarmed with paramedics who tended to the wounded Captain whose limbs all bent at funny angles. The expression on the "criminal mastermind's" face could only be described as blissful.
Nite Owl gaped. "How did--"
"Your friend here came out and got us," a policeman who stood at the elevator doors spoke up and jerked his thumb towards the familiar trench coated figure beside him, "Said the hostage thing was a false alarm, but some poor guy fell down the elevator shaft." On the cop's other side stood a man in a maintenance uniform with a crowbar in his hands.
Rorschach's mask bore a striking resemblance to a shit-eating grin. Nite Owl glowered at him.
"Sir," one of the paramedics addressed the Captain, "Are you in any pain?" It struck the two masked heroes as a singularly dumb question.
"Oh, yes," Carnage replied dreamily, "Agony."
"I could give you something for it."
"Mmm…No, thank you." The paramedics exchanged looks. Freak.
"Now, this was an accidental fall, was it not?" the policeman asked, giving the masked men a suspicious sidelong glance.
Captain carnage nodded. "Most definitely. Clumsy me." He beamed at Rorschach's shifting mask. "Thank you so much."
As the two heroes walked away, the maintenance guy muttered, "What I don't understand is, why didn't that owl fella use the workin' elevator ta get down here?"
Nite Owl scowled at his partner. "I hate you."
Rorschach shrugged philosophically. "Everyone does."
Captain Carnage suffered multiple fractures to all four limbs, a broken pelvis, and several cracked vertebrae. While he was eventually able to walk, he remained in chronic pain for the rest of his life. It was Heaven.