Cataclysm Chapter 8


The offices of the bugle were quiet for months; a thing that Brant and Robertson both loved dearly. When another wave was reported, the pair of them began to work on a newsletter when a noise they both prayed they’d never hear again sounded out. The pair stared at each other in a cold sweat. 

J. Jonah Jameson burst through the head office doors, demanding to know what they were publishing, if that menace Spider-Man and his little sidekick had come here too, if anyone had pictures. The pair sighed, the vacation was over.

Two months had passed since the avengers had been revived. Vision had once again pushed a message to the real world. “THE AVENGERS HAVE RETURNED. SOMETHING ELSE HAS HAPPENED.” Vision had also gained memories of other lives. He saw himself guarding an undead scarlet witch, a purple alien digging out his mind stone, battling a separate dimension at the whims of cosmic beings.

It troubled him, the knowledge of other dimensions that could stand to increase the more waves that occurred. How much knowledge could one being take? The mind stone helped him, but as he stared across his comrades, he couldn’t help but worry. Captain America and Wolverine in particular had strange stories of being merged with other heroes from beyond their dimension.

There had been some positives out of the previous wave. Yes, the fallen heroes had revived, with a downside of the fallen villains also reviving, as Ultron was confirmed to be skulking about, ranting about how he’d managed to destroy humanity once. Daredevil had been brooding on top of a church in hell’s kitchen. He was plagued by memories of zombification, losing Elektra, Losing Karen Page and helping Fisk in his crimes. What was this phenomenon, why was he being tormented with them? He couldn’t know.

In the real world, the remaining defenders were watching over Hell’s Kitchen. Currently, Luke and Jessica were discussing The Punisher, who had been cutting the crime in Hell’s Kitchen like it was grass, often with the same tools. While they were happy to have less crime, they were a little opposed to the horrific violent ways he was doing it. It felt off, like he was going out of his way to be brutal, like it wasn’t actually the Frank Castle they knew.

Kaine, one of the last spider-men they had was with them, trying to help track the Punisher down. With Peter and Miles both gone, he was there to protect New York in the meantime. This was something that the Punisher was making rather difficult, given that his recent act involved throwing a screaming, begging mobster off of the empire state building. Blade, the legendary vampire hunter, had tagged along too. The waves had sent most of the vampire population away aside from Morbius, who he had last seen having a breakdown over Jared Leto; for whatever reason.

Near the docks of Hell’s Kitchen, a man dressed as iron first was begging for his life. Frank Castle stood over him, looking different. In his hand was none other than the source of all the problems. An ISO-8 shard. He spat at the iron fist impostor with malice, telling him he was nothing but a faker, coasting off the glory of real heroes. The fake Iron Fist wept and screamed for him to not do this. Punisher didn’t even blink as he walked to the car the Fake Fist was tied to by his upper half. The faker looked at the car, then his legs, that were tied to a fence nearby and put two and two together. His screaming intensified as Frank placed a brick on the accelerator.

The car careened into the street, carrying the impostor’s upper half with it. As if by pure coincidence, Luke Cage barely dodged the car as it crashed into a busy street. 

The three watched the Punisher stare at them until Jessica noticed the thing Frank was clutching. A shard, She relayed what she was seeing to the rest of them and the four decided they had to incapacitate him before he hurt himself further.

In the playground, Matt had managed to meet with Vision to request a favour. If he could push a message out of this dimension, could he project a hologram of himself, and maybe even someone else outside of this dimension? Vision wasn’t sure, but he could try.

Elektra sat in a restaurant. With all the heroes vanishing she had taken up her assassin gig again, a few tables from her was Mama Gnucci. A matriarch of the Gnucci crime family. She was waiting for the restaurant to clear, Ma Gnucci loved to stay late in her dear late father’s bistro. Under the table she held her katana, the second the fat man, shovelling carbonara and pizza down his neck, finally let the exhausted looking waiter leave the table and go home, she was going to make Ma’s head roll.

Suddenly, Matt was sitting across from her. Was this a vision? A shapeshifter? He stared dead ahead, presumably his powers weren’t reaching here. She called his name, softly. He perked up, seemingly overjoyed that she was alive and explained he had seen memories of her passing away in his arms, Elektra didn’t even know what to say, she asked where he was, if he knew. 

Matt was about to say something, when a beeping device crashed through the window, sticking to the back of Elektra’s head. Matt didn’t even realise what happened when the explosion tore her apart infront of him. Severing his connection, he begged Vision to try again, but Vision couldn’t lock onto her.

A corrupted Frank flew into the bistro, web attatched to his leg. He stood up, spoke a quick “Hello, Mr Bumpo.” To the horrified man and sneered at the Gnucci Matriarch, who had a shard of shrapnel in her neck. He glanced at the back of the restaurant, and grinned, noticing the damage at the front made a perfect ramp.

Kaine stood atop a clock tower. Laughing at the punisher and asking if that was all he had. Frank responded by staring up at him, pulling out his phone and tapping something. Right as he did that, however, a crystal stuck out of his chest. The Scarlet spider froze in shock at the sight. But snapped out of it when a huge white truck barrelled through what was left of the bistro, flying up the ramp. He didn’t even have time to dodge when it crushed him into the pavement. Punisher walked out the crumbling bistro, dodging a stumbling, screaming Bumpo as Luke and Jessica charged the possessed castle. Punisher dodged them with ease.

Blade pulled out his katana as Punisher scaled the clock tower with ease, much to Jessica and Luke’s horror. Punisher easily disabled him with a revolver shot to the knee, pushing him off the roof with a sticky grenade stuck to his chest. He turned back to face the heroes as the Vampire hunter exploded into chunks. 

Suddenly, before anyone could do anything, a sword pierced his chest.

Matt asked Dr Strange about their home, explaining that something had seemingly killed Elektra and asked him for help. Strange pondered the request. Since he had seen that strange otherworld he had wondered how he could get back to it, to discover who was behind it. 

Vision was with them, and he offered to help. Strange focused all his effort onto himself, and like when they fought the corrupted Groot, his soul stepped out his body. 

Vision focused on him, and the soul flickered out of reality.

Behind the Punisher stood Moon Knight, Jake Lockley in the driver seat. He pulled his sword out of Castle’s chest and kicked him over. He shouted at the two to run, that Frank was filled with whatever energy was causing the Amalgam Waves. 

Doctor Strange stood on a street that looked like hell had come to it. He was home, but what the hell happened here? He couldn’t waste time, he was able to pass through all damage easily, stopping once he saw the remains of Elektra and Blade. Grimacing, he flew forward to discover the four remaining heroes, locked in battle. 

He couldn’t see the crystals protruding out of Castle’s chest, and wondered if Moon Knight was the cause of the destruction. He flew up to him and demanded him to stop, Lockley froze in shock, he wasn’t supposed to be here. How was this possi-

BANG! Frank took advantage of the commotion the re-appeared doctor and fired his last bullet in the revolver clean through Lockley’s skull; putting Jake, Stephen and Marc to rest at once. 

The good doctor froze in horror, the almost demonic grin on Frank’s face reminded him of Dormammu. Luke had climbed the building by the time Frank was able to steady himself, they locked eyes as Frank prepared a taser. 

Doctor Strange spotted the shard in his belt, and realised what was about to happen. The two charged, he reached out, the taser’s hum rang in the air. One more wave hit the earth.

Elektra shot up, back in one piece. She was somewhere else, that was for sure, but where? She kept a straight face as she walked out of the intact bistro, ignoring a screaming Ma Gnucci and a Mr Bumpo, who sat down and asked for a waiter. 

The Punisher and Luke Cage barely noticed Jessica hadn’t come with them. The crystal in Frank’s chest remained. Luke barely registered Punisher’s barbaric attempts to gun him down as he charged, unleashing an uppercut that sent Frank flying. He was finally subdued as the once thought vanished heroes began to hone in on them.

When Strange’s soul awoke, he was in an unfamiliar place. A waiting room, of all places. A large sign reading “TVA WAITING ROOM” was above him. Of all the places he had ended up, this was surely the most asinine. 

He got up, ready to magic his way out of this, when a door slid open. A man with white hair and a nice suit turned to face him with a reassuring, but needing smile.

He greeted him, and explained.

“My name is Mobius M. Mobius. And we need your help.”

In the bugle offices, JJJ watched over the city as they welcomed their new residents, he saw the menace, the evildoer SPIDER-MAN and his little partner and girlfriend greeting another hero. What poppycock. 

When four spiders took to the sky in a large swing. Betty heard a strange howl, then a thump. 

Maybe the vacation was back on after all.

In a cell, in a SHIELD facility; Loki sat staring at a man offering him a solution. He’d get him his staff and space stone back and help him escape, the trickster god sneered about how he was meant to trust him.

Wilson stood forward; and retorted that he wasn’t the only one good at tricking people.