Murder on the TransDimensional Express
I don't own Quiverwing Duck, Darkwing Duck, or any of the AU DWs. They came from the brilliant minds of Tad Stones, Ian Brill, and James Silvani. Disney owns them all. The Deadly Malicia MaCawber belongs to Vaporish, used with permission.
Daring Duck of Mystery, Champion of Right, swoops out of the shadows, Quiverwing owns the night, somewhere some villain schemes, but his number's up, cuz here comes…Quiverwing Duck
I watched with fascination as Werewolf Darkwing, or "Darkwolf Dog", as he styled himself circled where Deathvalley's remains had been before. We had frozen them and quickly taken them away for an autopsy. Darkwolf circled the spot several times, snuffling along with his beak/snout to the ground.
He snuffled over to a spot about 30 feet away and howled.
"This is where the murderer stood," he said at last.
Aside from Darkwolf, only Sherlock Darkwing, Rorschach Darkwing, Darkwing Doubloon and myself were present.
"Excellent," Doubloon said.
"Can you track him?" Rorschach asked.
"No," Darkwolf said shaking his head.
"Why not?" Rorschach responded. Darkwolf sighed.
"Because the murderer smells just like, you," he said.
"And you," He pointed at Sherlock,
"And you," He pointed at Doubloon,
"And you," he pointed at me, "And all the other Darkwings sans the non-mallard ones"
"It's elementary my dear Rorschach," Sherlock said. "Deathvalley was murdered by another Darkwing. At present, I know of only two Darkwings capable of such an act."
"And since one has been tron-split into millions of particles of evil and slightly less evil floating around St. Canard Prime," I said frowning.
I grabbed one of my few arrow-arrows, and thus one of the only lethal parts of my arsenal and marched away from the crime scene.
The murder had taken place just outside of town (hey, it was a small town) but I was headed in the opposite direction. Less than a half-mile from the spot, I came across a boarded up mine entrance.
The mine had long since been abandoned and sealed up. The sign above it said "McDuck Mine". There were actually a number of entrances to the mine, but this one was the nearest.
Not in the mood to play games I placed the arrow-arrow between my beak, whipped out my mallet-arrow and fired, shattering the boards. Pulling the arrow out of my mouth I marched down into the mine.
It wasn't long before I found the TransDimensional Express sitting on the mine tracks. I marched up to the back of the train climbed aboard and marched through the empty cars till I came to the third car from the engine. ArachnoDuck saluted me with three of his arms and opened the door for me. I marched into the room where DarkWarrior Duck sat, tied to a chair by ArachnoDuck's spider-silk.
DarkWarrior smirked as I aimed an arrow at his face.
"You know we have an audience?" he said, noting that Sherlock, Rorschach, Doubloon, Darkwolf, and ArachnoDuck had followed me in.
"Wouldn't be the first time," I said.
Quiververse, 7 months earlier; St. Canard Underworld: 2:31AM
"And this is a live feed?" Taurus asked frowning.
"Are you kidding boss?" "Hammerhead" Hannigan responded. "It was hard enough getting any kind of video of this nut…have you seen him? He moves like the wind! This was shot ten minutes ago…the freak is long gone."
"Yes," Taurus said stroking his chin, "He moves with such purpose, such conviction…not like the bumbling imbecile…this is an interesting development. I must remember to keep an eye on this...Duck…"
The grated elevator door suddenly opened as Steelbeak stepped out. Taurus smirked as Malicia MaCawber followed him into the room.
"Oh boy," Hannigan said looking at the duckubus in surprise. The goat then decided to make himself scarce.
Malicia looked around Taurus's hideout in appreciation. The bull certainly knew about the finer things in life. His office had a desk with an imposing chair in one corner, the chair being bigger than the bovine himself (a hard enough task in and of itself) in the opposite corner, a large love seat big enough for the bull and someone else, with a television resting in front of it, though the TV was currently rotated towards the desk. She could see the black and white images flickering on the screen. It was some kind of modern retelling of Robin Hood by the looks of it. Her heart skipped a beat. She had always been a fan of Errowl Flynn, but the duck playing Robin was even more dashing than he was.
There was a bar in the right hand corner, opposite the desk, and the elevator took up the remaining corner.
Hammerhead was gone, though where, Malicia couldn't be sure. Taurus Bulba dominated the room. He was tall and imposing, well muscled and with strong chiseled features. He wore a pinstriped suit and a bowler hat. She'd seen his pictures in the papers and on the news serials before his "death" last year, but in person, he was even more impressive.
Malicia surprised even herself; she had always been a fowl-and-feathers kind of girl, only interested in Mallards and the occasional goose. She'd never before been interested in a mammal, but Taurus's physique certainly opened her mind to new possibilities.
"Miss Malicia MaCawber," Taurus said in his most charming tone. "I've been expecting you."
She shuddered at those words. Steelbeak chuckled nervously and hurried himself back into the elevator. Malicia didn't like that…
"Have a drink with me my dear," Bulba said, pouring a fine wine into a glass. "Pinot McDuck. Scrooge demands top dollar for his products…if they weren't worth every penny that he demands, I wouldn't even bother. Come now my dear…surely you can enjoy the finer things in life. After all, in a way, you're paying for this wine."
His words snapped Malicia back to reality. She suddenly remembered why she had come here in the first place.
Her eyes flashed as he turned around with the glasses in his hands.
"Forty percent of my profits are outrageous," she said. She started to say more but his look froze her with fear.
"I'm afraid it's non-negotiable," Taurus said matter-of-factly as he forced the drink in her hand. "You will be paying me forty percent of your profits, or the Malicious will find itself under new management."
"Do you know who I am?" She snarled, throwing the expensive wine down on the carpet and shattering the glass.
"Quite well in fact," Taurus said. "That's why this rug has the symbol of Hecate woven into it."
Malicia's eyes widened in shock. She was powerless. Since Taurus owned the rug, he alone could say who could and couldn't use magic when standing on it. Such was the law of the goddess of magic. Taurus had done his research and he had the upper hand, in fact, Malicia had never been more vulnerable. If the crime lord wanted to do away with her, there would never be a better time.
"Relax," Taurus said. "If I wanted you dead my dear, you would be. There are ways to pay me my cut without money…"
She blinked in surprise. She reached up towards the back of her dress.
"No," Taurus chuckled. "Business before pleasure. I am in need of a magic-user. A sorceress for my operation. Magic is a…tricky business, I have fingers in every aspect of St. Canard…except one…"
"Ah," Malicia said, realization dawning on her. Knowing what he wanted and what was expected of her, she felt her magic return. She waved her hand over the shattered glass. It reformed and the wine flowed back into it. "Taurus my dear, this could be the start of a beautiful friendship."
Quiververse; St. Canard Docks: 9:31AM
"What do you suppose it means?" Chief Police Commissioner Hooter said frowning at the three Beagle Boys tied up neatly. "Detective Grizzlikof?"
"I am not sure Chief-Commissioner," He responded. "But you should be coming to see this…"
Two arrows were stuck into the wall of the warehouse and between them a single banner was strung.
THE QUIVERWING STRIKES ONCE MORE
"Oh my," the police chief said.
Quiververse; St. Canard- The Silver Cauldron Restaurant: 11:31AM
"Is something bothering you Jake?" Morgana asked the Cajun cook as she stepped into the kitchen.
Jambalaya Jake jumped when she spoke. He had been staring blankly into his gumbo for almost fifteen minutes.
"I'm sorry, miss Morgana," he said shaking his head and stirring the gumbo. "I'll try to stay focused I gare-on-tee."
"What is it Jake?" Morgana asked, "Your Étouffée isn't up to snuff, I just wanted to check on you."
"It's just that…it's been one year," He said taking his toque off and crinkling it in his hands. "One year since…the incident at the St. Canard Dam…you know the one…"
Morgan shuddered. She knew the incident all to well…the very reason that Jake had given up crime…and the very night she had lost her Dark. He had simply vanished from her life that night. She alone knew his secret identity, and had gone to his house to find it deserted. Everything of sentimental value was gone, and so was Darkwing. She hadn't seen him since.
"We're not very busy," Morgana said. "Let's feed the customers we have and close for the day. We'll say it's a holiday, it kind of is."
"Most of St. Canard don't know what she did," Jake said. "They don't know what happened. If they did, it WOULD be a holiday I gare-ON-tee."
She nodded and frowned. She had heard something odd on the radio that was playing in the dining room.
"Archie," she called, "Turn it up!"
The tarantula—who lived in the radio during business hours—grumbled in annoyance but did as he was asked.
"And the Beagles, claimed the masked mallard was like Robin Hood," the newscaster announced. "If Robin Hood was ten times scarier than Duckula and more intense and focused than Gizmoduck. The hero left no name but there was a message written at the crime scene: The Quiverwing Strikes Again. Leading many officials to speculate that that dynamic duo, those daring-do-gooders Darkwing Duck and Quiverwing Quack have once again returned to our fair city."
"Dark!" Morgana cooed before realizing what the broadcaster had actually said. "Wait…"
"That's not possible miss Morgana," Jake said shaking his head. "Quiverwing's gone…I saw it myself…it don't make sense."
Quiververse; St. Canard: McDuck Enterprises Munitions and Arms Manufacturing. 6:32 PM
"Hurry, hurry my players," Tuskernini called out to the Eggmen. "We mustn't dawdle. Act One Scene One. Scrooge McDuck, the robber baron of Duckburg grows a conscience, and orders the closing of several dozen of his munitions factories. Enter F.O.W.L, the Fiendish Organization for World Larceny sweeping in to relieve the factories of as many armaments as possible before the military comes in and does it for them. After all, what will the military use the munitions for? Mundane unimaginative things like protecting its citizens, no F.O.W.L. has much bigger and better plans for these babies."
"Come now," he said as his penguin assistants directed the Eggmen. There was a loud crash as an arrow came through the window and landed in the center of the room. Once again green smoke came pouring out filling the room.
"Come, Come," Tuskernini said gesturing to the Eggmen as he backed towards the door. "Our lives for the Theater!"
The green smoke filled the room and obscured all vision. Tuskernini could hear no sounds beside the frequent "FWIPP" that occurred every ten seconds or so. He attempted to escape through the door to the munitions factory only to find the door melted shut with the shaft of an arrow sticking out of the molten metal. He gingerly touched the metal and jerked back, realizing it was still hot.
"I am the Arrow that Strikes in the Night," a voice behind him said. The overweight walrus jerked and spun around to see the silhouette in the smoke of a strange masked figure with a bow and arrow pointed at him.
"A bow and arrow?" he crowed. "How pleasantly, quaintly, Native American…allow me to play cowboy to your Indian."
He whipped out a small revolver but no sooner was it out then Tuskernini was wincing in pain as the gun clattered to the ground, an arrow sticking out of its trigger.
"I am the Crazy Horse to your General Custer," The duck said, igniting a flaming arrow and aiming it at Tuskernini's head. Tuskernini swallowed at the reference.
"I am Quiverwing Duck," he said. "And you, are Tuskernini, chief agent of F.O.W.L. Tell me where the Asterion is."
"I don't know what your are…" he started to say. FWAPP. A flaming arrow whizzed past his head, knocking his hat off and striking the wall behind him.
"Do you really want to play with flaming arrows in a munitions factory?" Tuskernini asked.
"Do you?" Quiverwing asked, pulling back another arrow with a flaming tip. "I know that all crime in St. Canard needs to be cleared with him first, and he always takes a cut. Even from F.O.W.L."
"Ah yes," Tuskernini said suddenly. "The Asterion…hmm…never met him in person, we talked over the phone."
"ARGGH!" Quiverwing growled in frustration. The flaming arrow whizzed past Tuskernini's head once again, singing his whiskers as it passed. Quiverwing turned and disappeared into the green smoke.
Tuskernini sighed in relief, and then stepped forward. The smoke was slowly lifting from the warehouse. He looked on in horror as he saw that each and every Eggman, as well as his penguin assistants, was tied up or bound in some way, by some kind of trick arrow. Then he heard the sounds of police sirens surrounding the building.
"How embarrassing," He moaned. "High command will not be pleased to hear about this.
OK Canard: Now
DarkWarrior never even flinched as I raised my arrow towards his face.
"Are you kidding me?" he sneered. "You actually think I killed Deathvalley Duck? You can't be serious. One; I've been tied up in this room since we got here…since we got anywhere really. Two; as soft on crime as I think you inferior versions of myself are, you're the only thing preventing your universes from devolving into utter chaos. Why would I advocate ANY kind of lawlessness? That's just ridiculous."
"Actually," Sherlock said frowning. "By DarkWarrior Logic, that argument is sound. I truly do believe he's telling the truth and is completely innocent this time."
"Well," Rorschach said. "Innocent of this crime. He's still a monster in his own universe."
Realizing that they were right, that DarkWarrior had no real motive for killing Deathvalley, I slowly lowered my bow and quivered my arrow.
"Which leads us to an inevitable but horrifying conclusion," Sherlock said.
"What's that?" Doubloon asked.
"One of us killed Deathvalley Duck," He posited as he took his pipe out of his mouth. "And we have no idea which one of us that is."