RealmArt Comics Karudo: Showdown with The Super Predator A hostage situation at the bank was not how I wanted to spend my morning. But unfortunately, that’s what I had to do. As an Augmented, it was my duty as a hero. According to the local news, the bank was being held hostage by The Anello dei Serpenti, or the Ring of Snakes. The Ring of Snakes was a mob/miniature crime syndicate. The members were some of the most dangerous Italian-American criminals in the state of West Virginia. They were turned into half snake hybrids thanks to their master/creator, The Super Predator. The Super Predator let them do their own thing most of the time, but when he needed them, they were his henchmen. The Super Predator was with them at the bank. They were stealing money, while The Super Predator was picking hostages to cannibalize, as that is the only meat that he ate now. I left the school (which had been put under the jurisdiction of the CROSS & SWORD) and flew to the Charleston Bank. I found they had left but left a note for anyone who came after them. They had retreated to their lair, on the West Side of Charleston. I traversed the sewer system to get to the West Side. I emerged outside of their lair, which was an old, run-down, apartment complex. I entered the building silently. I had mastered the art of stealth and silence in my quest to become the Ultimate Hunter/Predator for my “hunts”. The floors were covered with water and mold, and there was a smell of raw sewage, including fecal matter and urine. It would be impossible for a normal human to stay in these conditions, but neither The Super Predator nor the Anello dei Serpenti were normal humans, they were animal hybrids, and I was an Augmented who could adapt to environments and situations. I traversed the cold, dark maze that was the decrepit building. Finally, I heard the screams of victims, as well as the crime syndicate laughing over the wealth they had acquired from their heist. Standing in the shadows, I saw the half-snakes making cash angels on the ground, while The Super Predator had his victims handcuffed to a pipe running along the wall. They were badly injured and bleeding badly. There were 7 against the wall, and 3 in a pile that had already been feasted upon by The Super Predator. There was hardly any trace of humanity left in him whatsoever, the serum combined with anger and embitterment from his childhood turning him insane and completely predatorial. Blood was dripping from his crocodilian snout, and his teeth was lined with the flesh of his victims. “Please let us go!!!! We won’t tell the authorities about any of you!” A woman screamed. “I don’t care whether the authorities find me, I helped the Anello dei Serpenti rob a bank so that I could find my next feast. I plan to eat all of you all. I may let one of you go, but the Anello dei Serpenti will not let you escape alive. Any last words!?” He said as he hovered his snout over her head. “She might not, but I do.” I said as I emerged from the shadows. The Anello dei Serpenti froze upon realizing it was me. They feared only three mortal beings, The Super Predator, me, and their berserker member, Sandusky’s Boomslang. They turned their attention from me to the Super Predator, then back to me, unsure of what to do. He motioned for them to stand down, for now. “Karudo, still pursuing me, are you?” He said sarcastically, his venom saliva dripping onto the floor, which caused it to steam due to it having traces of acidity. “Well, you are a serial predator, and you have butchered countless individuals, and committed other heinous crimes. I’m taking you in.” I said, as I pressed a silent paged meaning, I would need swordsmen as backup to capture The Super Predator as well as the Anello dei Serpenti. They would most likely send the Angel Squad, which were the elite spartan class in the swordsmen factions. “Over my dead body!” He screamed, punching the piping with his crab claw, which began leaking a gas, and by the smell of it, it was flammable. I felt a double vibration from my pocket, meaning Dr. Ellison and General Bennett were sending swordsmen to me. I turned into my beast form and we began circling each other. If I could get him to try and squirt me with flammable stinger venom, I could set him alight with my combustion breath. He lunged at me, and I turned on my armor plating, which made my skin impenetrable to his bite. He then grabbed me by the neck with his tentacle arm and began choking me out. I manifested poison glands, which in turn spread to his tentacle, causing him to writhe back in pain. Finally, he did what I was hoping for him to do. He squirted a stream of flammable venom from his scorpion stinger, and I turned on my flamethrower and combustion breath, which came into contact with his venom, and set him alight. At that moment, the Angel Squad arrive, with very heavy fire power. It was at that moment that the Anello dei Serpenti decided to make their move. They attacked the Angel Squad while I was dealing with The Super Predator. If I needed to, I could unleash a menacing roar that would summon the animals of the earth to me, and they would help me in my fight. If I lost to The Super Predator, however, then he would claim my Alpha Dominion, and he would have control over the Animal Kingdom. He quickly doused himself with water and regenerated from his burn wounds. I would not be able to use his venom against him again. I would have to think of a different approach. He lunged at me again, tackling me, and we rolled around the room, biting and slashing each other. I had a new idea. I used my leech ability to siphon off his venom and it filled the venom cavities in my fangs and twin scorpion tails. I injected him in his abdomen, as well as in his nippular areas. I had found a way to use his venom against him other than to burn him. He would be weakened by his own venom, and I planned to try and get him in the middle of the piping, then break all of it, and set the gas and consequently him on fire. I turned back to the Angel Squad, who was still quarrelling with the Ring of Snakes. They had not yet managed to free the hostages, and they were being overwhelmed. I knew what I had to do. I used a surprise attack against The Super Predator, injecting him with venom once again, and knocking him back into the main piping, where I shot webbing at him to keep him from escaping. I turned my attention back to the Anello dei Serpenti, who were about to deliver crippling blows to Angel Squad. I set the snake-men on fire with my combustion breath, and they retreated into the sewers. “Heavenio, Chernobyl, free the hostages! The rest of you, fire at the piping and The Super Predator.” I said. Nate and Randy got to work untying the hostages, Heavenio turning metal to break the chains, and Chernobyl using his selective radiation to rot away the metal. The hostages got out. The rest were firing at the piping and The Super Predator. As I had hoped and planned, the channel locks on the pipes explode off, making the gas leak with extreme pressure. “Heavenio, Chernobyl, get behind me! The rest of you, get out of here quick!” I screamed. I manifested fire-proof armor over my body, then I use my combustion breath to set the gas alight as well as The Super Predator. As I had hoped, the gas and venom in The Super Predator caused a massive explosion, causing everything to catch on fire. I grabbed Chernobyl and Heavenio, and rolled up like a giant pill bug, and the fire spread around us and brought the building crashing down on us. An hour later, the fire died down enough outside, so I unrolled myself, and we inspected the damage, and more importantly, to see whether The Super Predator was still here, and had even survived. The Super Predator was where we left him, badly burned, but still alive, but unconscious. Dr. Ellison and the rest of The CROSS & SWORD arrived shortly after, with a full military escort to take The Super Predator to the Undercroft, or the superhuman prison on the moon. As he was about to be taken on the Osprey, The Super Predator completely regenerated, and quickly took care of his escorts. He unfurled his moth wings and began to fly away. Chernobyl was on it, however. His veins started to glow, and from his eyes came nuclear discharges, in a form of mixed lightning and laser beams. The Super Predator was hit and fell to the ground. Heavenio took over from there. He turned solid Heavenium, and using his strength and selective magnetism, he carried The Super Predator off into space to personally incarcerate him. Heavenio would not require oxygen while in metal form, and even though the Super Predator still needed air while he was unconscious, he would arrive before he died of lack of oxygen. We had managed to get The Super Predator, but the Anello dei Serpenti had got away. They were less of a threat with their leader and creator no longer being able to give them orders, meaning they would just resort to petty mob crime, making it easier to capture them and subdue them.