Tin Man: The Wrath of the NOME

A Fan Fiction by: D W Tyn

Prologue:

"It's just down this way, Sir Jeb," said the Site foreman to Sir Jeb Cain, Head Tin Man assigned to Edge Town, former Leader of the Resistance Guild, and son of the newly appointed Chief of the Tin Men, Sir Wyatt Cain. Jeb raised his lantern to reply, "Lead the way; and stop calling me 'Sir' Jeb. I'm almost as uncomfortable with my new status as my father."

"Oh," said the foreman, "and how is he handling his, Jeb?" Jeb slightly smirked, "He once told me that he'd rather go back in a Iron Suit than behind a desk." They both chuckled, and then the ended up to the entrance to a strangely lit cave. As he entered, Jeb's eyes gleamed with fascination as he saw a large orb glowing a dark purple color. The foreman walked to the nearest wall to show Jeb strange markings. "Over here," he said to Jeb, "are what our local archeologists believe to be either the story or the instructions of the Orb left by the Ancients; this is a great discovery: an artifact of the Ancients that still works."

Jeb took a closer look at the Orb. When he touched it he discovered that it was made entirely out of magical energy. Also, when he looked closer he thought he saw the outlines of faces appearing and disappearing right in front of his eyes. If the Ancients made this thing, Jeb thought, why would they bury it underneath Mt. Edge? Edge Town is an outpost town under Mt. Edge, and the closest town to the EV, or Empty Vast, the great desert surrounding the Outer Zone, or OZ.

Suddenly, he thought he heard someone else's footsteps in the cave. At first, he thought he was hearing things, but then, Jeb heard not only footsteps, but someone humming what sounded like an old lullaby. The voice humming it sounded female, ancient, and insane. Jeb said to the foreman, "There's someone here." He then turned to the direction of the humming, pulled out he revolver and shouted, "Who ever is here, show yourself, by command of this Tin Man." The last part was the command all Tin Men use to announce themselves; also something Jeb was still getting use to.

There were only two of them, but Jeb felt that there was something dark and unsettling about them; or, at least for one of them. One was a girl that looked around Jeb's age. She had red hair tied in a pony tail, and light-brown eyes that had a mix of pain, sadness, and fury. Also, she was wearing a duster the color of saffron and was holding two pistols aimed at Jeb and the foreman.

The other was an old crone wearing what looked liked an older form of a female Royal Advisor that looked worn and tattered; and she was clutching a sinisterly crafted walking stick. She reminded Jeb of Glitch, the Head-Case who turn out the be the top advisor to Queen Glinda. But, instead of the zipper that Glitch had on the crown of his head, her entire head was made entirely out of rusted metal. The only things that weren't metal were her gray hair, that stuck chaotically to both sides, and her eyes, that were both bulging insanely, and glowing an eerily green. It seemed to Jeb that she was the one in charge. The crone's mouth piece opened, and with a voice that also sound rusted and mad, "Ah, so the Tin Men have been reestablished, eh?" she then cackled slightly, "Good, good. That means that horrid girl is no longer possessed by the Wicked One. Now we can begin."

With that, she turned her head to the girl, "Jinjur, would you be a dear and disarm this shiny, new Tin Man, but without killing him like last time?" she said to the girl that sounded more like an order than a request. The girl bowed her head, "I will fight the urge and shall obey you, Lady Mombi." Suddenly, one of her guns fired and shot Jeb's gun right out of his hand. The ricochet made Jeb fall to his knees. Jinjur then walked up to him and looked down on him with a confident smirk on her face. "It's a shame you're one of those heartless, murdering Tin Men," she said. " Because you're kind of cute. Oh, and you should count yourself lucky Lady Mombi wants you alive, because I never miss. Never." Jeb then slightly smiled. "Well, maybe, if we meet again, you can put your coin where your mouth is." Jinjur smiled puckishly at the idea, winking before saying, "Cutie, you got yourself both a deal and a date."

After that, the foreman tried to make a break for it. before he could even make it to the tunnel, the crone made a gesture with her walking stick, and the foreman floated towards her, and, when he was near her, she made a hand gesture with her open hand, made his mouth open, and devoured his Life-Essence, just as Azkadellia did when she killed the Mystic Man. When she was finished, the Forman's body fell to the ground, then she turned to face Jeb, saying while cackling, "Run, young Tin Man. Run to Central City and to your Queen, whoever she be now, and tell her two things: One, that Mombi has returned. And, most importantly, that, after all these Annuals of searching, she has at last found the NOME, and they will feast upon the OZ and everyone in it."