A FEM-FANTASTIQUE ,INC. ADVENTURE
BY CMQ 9-97
What has gone before: After escaping their alien captors, the Fem-Fantastique team encounters a race of alien amazon women. Transparency Girl (Susan) is turned into a living statue by a rogue amazon but is released from her immobile captivity when the deception is revealed.
It had been one month since the members of Fem-Fantastique, Inc. returned from their deep space exile. Dee was dressed in her full Shadow Lady regalia. It felt good to be back in familiar clothing, she thought, although I did come to like the harem-like outfit that the late Prince Kargh of the Mok'tn made for me after a month of living in it. Her pale yellow halter twist top revealed incredible cleavage to her navel and her high cut yellow bikini-style trunks made her long bare legs look all the more lengthier. She had designed the costume to distract enemies, and the sheer volume of exposed skin and her own ample charms accomplished that task more than once. And to those not interested in her beautiful form, she was trained in a variety of martial arts techniques and was armed with a multi-function wrist projector strapped to her green gloved wrist which could project a blinding shadow-like beam, a high-voltage taser, or a mini-laser beam. In addition, she had infra-red and nightvision built into her reflective sunglasses-like goggles and a combination hologram camera/projector built into her ruby amulet.
She adjusted the ruby hologram lens which served as the clasp to her olive green cape and straightened the green belt with its distinctive "S" buckle around her hips. Dee had agreed to this public appearance at a local mall to help reassure the public that the city's super-team was back and ready to protect the populace. Fortunately, the criminal underground had not taken advantage of their disappearance and it had been as quiet, relatively speaking, as it had been since the day they were abducted. This "meet-the-public" affair had actually gone quite well, she thought. At least when the older men and teenage boys weren't leering at her while she signed autographs. Oh well, she thought, that was exactly what my costume is supposed to do. The real joy was meeting the children, especially the adorable little girls who told her they wanted to grow up to be just like her. Dee smiled at the thought of them. Nothing like inspiring the next generation of crime-fighters, she reflected. She was delighted that some had even brought crayon drawings and home-made gifts for her.
Dee waved one final time at the assembled throng of people amid dozens of flashbulbs going off and stepped offstage to a back maintenance hallway separated from the rest of the mall. A couple of city policeman waited to escort her to a waiting cab. "Thanks for agreeing to do this appearance, Shadow Lady," the tall, handsome one said. "It really has helped soothe the public confidence."
"It was my pleasure," Dee smiled. " I think I'll recommend to Transparency Girl that we do this more often. It really looks like a lot of goodwill has been spread. Could you make sure all the gifts are forwarded to F.F. INC HQ?"
"Sure thing, Shadow Lady," said the shorter, middle-aged cop. They walked the length of the corridor to a door which led outside. "I'll get that for you, miss."
"That's okay," she grinned. "I think I can take care of it. Thanks for the offer." She pressed the bar and swung the door outwards. As she stepped into the outdoor parking lot, the bright sunlight momentarily blinded her.
"Shadow Lady?" a voice came from someone being obscured by the open door.
"Yes?" she answered off-guardedly, turning towards the direction the voice came from.
Suddenly, a man dressed in a purple jumpsuit and armored helmet and shoulder pads stepped in front of her. Before she could react he had leveled a silver weapon of some sort at her. It had a rounded tip and a six-inch barrel with tubes running around to twin tanks strapped to his back. He sprayed a fine, clear mist at her as she stepped in front of open door and she only had time to take a breath before the mist coated her entirely. "Wha-?" she uttered, in total surprise before she abruptly felt herself become as stiff and hard as a statue. The process was virtually instantaneous and she only had the briefest of awareness as to what had happened to her before she stiffened completely, her delicate lips frozen in an "o" position.
The two policemen following behind her drew their weapons, but the helmeted assailant swiftly turned his weapon on them and shot streams of some sort of gooey substance which enveloped their pistols and hands and hardened into a solid mass instantly. "Hey!" yelled the taller one holding his encased hand up to his face. "What the heck is this stuff?"
"Just a special concoction I developed," the mystery man boasted. He grabbed the immobile heroine around her waist and turned her sideways so that she was horizontal to the ground but still locked in the same pose she was in. Everything coated with the spray was hard and rigid, from her dark hair to her cape, frozen in mid-sweep. Even her nipples, which portruded through the thin fabric of her top, were hard as buttons. "My, my..." he grinned as he stroked one of her thighs, " You're stiff as a board!" He pressed a button on his belt with his free hand and a tiny, saucer-shaped open-air hovercraft descended from above. "Gentlemen, I, and my new trophy, thank you for staging this wonderful affair!" The man boarded the craft with his mannequin-like captive and set her against the side of the craft. As the two policemen watched helplessly, the craft rose into the air and sped out of sight.
"Okay, let me get this straight," Flamestar said over the vid-phone line. "Some costumed goon just kidnapped Shadow Lady at the mall?"
"That's right, Dee." replied Transparency Girl. "We just got the call from the mall's security department. We're homing in on the tracking beacon she has in her belt buckle. It looks like she's somewhere in the south end of town."
"Then I'll meet you and the others en-route," Flamestar replied, disconnecting the vid-phone connection.
"All right, let's get moving," ordered Susan. She turned her seat and began to run towards the hanger bay. Cosmic Girl and the Crimson Sorceress followed close behind.
"I knew it was too quiet," said Cosmic Girl, sounding somewhat annoyed. "Something like this was bound to happen sooner or later."
The three heroines arrived at the hanger bay via the main elevator. It was situated just below the rooftop recreation deck. In the middle of the hanger sat the Mok'tn shuttle which had carried them home from their space oddysey. It had been dubbed the "Inc., Jet" by Dee after their return. Since the shuttle had superior capabilities than their old jet it had become their new all-purpose transport craft. Each member of Fem Fantastique, Inc. was now flight-certified to operated the Inc., Jet because Dee had spent the better half of the month training all the others in the operation of the shuttle. As they boarded, a portion of the building opened up, revealing the sky outside.
Sue sat in the pilot's seat with Wanda at her side in the co-pilot's chair. "Okay, all systems look ready," she declared while checking the instrument readings.
"Engines are on-line," Wanda stated, running down the quick departure checklist. "We're ready to go."
"The tracking signal is coming in strong," said Darlene from the rear, adjusting the scanner to follow Shadow Lady's personal tracking signal. "I've got a lock on her position."
"Lift off," said Sue as the Inc., Jet silently hovered off of its landing pads and moved slowly until it cleared the building. Upon reaching open sky it accelerated quickly into the clouds en route to the southern tip of the city.
Scant minutes later, the blazing flame contrail left in Flamestar's wake came into view. "There's Angie," said Wanda, pointing towards the flying heroine. Flamestar waved at the occupants and settled into a parallel course with the Inc., Jet.
"We're closing in on Dee's position," said Cosmic Girl.
"Prepare for landing," Susan acknowledged and lowered the landing pads.
As the Inc., Jet descended to the streets below, Flamestar gradually reduced the flaming aura which kept her aloft and touched down on the sidewalk. "Lots of deserted warehouses and run-down buildings," she said the other heroines disembarked from the jet and approached her.
"The tracker indicated it was that one," Cosmic Girl pointed to not too run-down, but obviously deserted warehouse and shipping complex.
"All right, we have no idea who kidnapped Dee," said Sue. "Let's proceed cautiously. We have no idea what we'll be facing in there."
"I'll take the northern side," volunteered Cosmic Girl.
"All right. Wanda, take the western entrance and I'll enter through this side," decided Sue. "And be on your toes for any traps. I have the feeling we've been lured here."
The three heroines split off to conduct their respective searches. Susan tried the door in front of her. It was unlocked. Not a good sign, she thought but I can throw a monkey-wrench into our mystery villain's plans. She concentrated momentarily and entered her transparent state. Within that state she became completely undetectable to normal sight. That invisible edge had made covert operations ideal for her. She opened the door and silently entered the darkened building. There were some pieces of heavy machinery around the floor, and it looked like the building's interior had been partitioned off into many segments by tall walls. As her eyes scanned the darkness for movement she stepped into another room filled with giant metal tanks. These seemed to be still operational, she noticed. LIQUID PLASTER SOLUTION 122A she read, straining to see the writing on the side. That seemed quite odd to her. Wouldn't large tanks of liquid plaster be somewhat unwieldy? As she stepped around the tanks she didn't notice that a portion of the floor she had just stepped on had been depressed ever so slightly.
In a darkened control room, the helmeted kidnapper grinned as he viewed numerous video screens in front of him. One of the screens showed the giant plaster tanks which Transparency Girl had just passed. A blinking light below the monitor made the villain grin. Too easy, he thought as he waited for a darkened light to illuminate. It blinked on. "Got you!" he laughed as he turned a large dial on his control panel.
Susan stepped into a large open area of the room. In the darkness, she didn't notice the many tiny pin-holes in the floor of the section she was now standing in. Suddenly, the pin-holes erupted in a jetspray of white liquid which was blasted upwards at high speed and revealed every inch of her tightly-clad invisible body. Before Sue could even react she was sprayed head-to-toe in a fine coat of plaster which hardened instantaneously upon contact with her. She had only a split-second of consciousness to realize she was now as hard and pristine as a pure Cararra marble statue before her senses went blank. The plaster spray had frozen her now-former blond locks in a windblown look. Every strand was as hard as the rest of her body. Sue's arms, slightly raised, were immobilized under a micro thin coat of the plaster and revealed her full and shapely breasts with erect nipples from the cold spray which had turned them rock hard. Her dark blue tights were now pristine white, revealing slender legs which were bent slightly at the knees. Sue's face was captured looking slightly down and to her right, frozen in the act of looking at the erupting plaster spray that was coating her.
From the control room, the villain pumped his fist into the air. "YES!" he exclaimed. "One down and three to go..." He got up from his seat and headed downstairs. Everything is going according to plan. Now I just have to move my new prize to the workroom and the rest will fall like dominoes.
Cosmic Girl cautiously probed the darkened room before her. She had just heard something and gingerly treaded into the dusty interior. It doesn't look like anyone has been in this section of the building in years, she pondered. She turned her head sharply to the right. This time I know I heard something, Darlene thought. But as she peered around her she still saw nothing. I'm getting jumpy, or is it something else? Stay on your toes, she reassured herself. Listen... Suddenly, she dived to the floor, tucking her body and rolling until she was behind a pile of dusty crates as she heard a sound similar to high-powered fire extinguisher discharging itself.
"Very good," a mysterious voice said. "I didn't think you could have detected me sneaking up on you."
"Who are you?" Darlene questioned. She peeked out from behind the crates she was behind and saw that the wood on one side was now coated in something which made it look pure white. What the hell is this? she thought, confused at the apparent trasformation of her wooden shield.
"Come out, come out wherever you are," said the stranger. "Or I'll have to flush you out..."
Cosmic Girl was suddenly surprised to see a stream of some sort of thick goop shoot over the crates and splatter against the wall behind her. She scrambled away from the stuff, figuring it definitely wouldn't do her any good if she touched it. Charging the cosmic energies in her body and channeling it to her right hand she shot a cosmic bolt projectile wildly, hoping to distract her assailant as she ran for cover. Her bolt took out part of the ceiling, causing her shadowy attacker to misfire in return.
She dodged a second stream of the same sort of goop on the run. Recharging her cosmic energy for an offensive strike she attempted to take cover behind a metal shelving unit but suddenly felt her legs go out on her. She tumbled to the ground and rolled against an empty wall. She tried to shake off her disorientation and pushed herself up into a sitting position. Why can't I feel my legs? she thought and looked down at her colt-like stems. "Oh!" she gasped, surprised at the sight before her. Each of her bare legs were stiffly pointed out in front of her. Darlene had always been especially proud of her sleek, well-toned gams and specifically designed her mini-skirt costume to show them off. Now, however, her formerly lightly tanned legs were coated in some sort of hardened substance from her crotch to her toes. A tiny portion of the edge of her mini-skirt also was coated in hardened white. "Wh-what have you done to me? she screamed, horrified at the sight of her immobile legs and losing the cosmic charge she had built up.
A second blast of liquid spray enveloped the rest of her body as she instinctively threw up her arms, but it was too late. Her body instantly became rigid and solid as a rock. Coated in a thin white plaster sheath, Cosmic Girl was now an instant statue with a look of fear and anguish permanently frozen on her pretty face.
The man walked up to the marble statue-like heroine and studied her body carefully, admiring the plastered fabric clinging to her breasts and the slightly upraised mini-skirt, frozen in a flirty, blown-upwards manner. "Another masterpiece," he congratulated himself. And one step closer to a full collection of heroines. I just have to lead the two others in the right direction and everything will be set, he thought.
Flamestar's heat aura lit up the darkness, but she still had found nothing to report on. She flew around a corner to find a faint light coming from behind a door further down the darkened hallway. This may be it, she thought and increased her own body heat so that she could burn right through the door without losing any speed. The metal door melted like hot cheese as she flew into a bright room which had a combination of mechanical pipes and tubes going to open vats. Angie hovered in the air scanning her surroundings. Around the room were white sheets covering tall stacks of crates as well as wooden shelves, filled with tools and pails, lining the walls. There were also striking white statues of nude and variously clothed women on pedestals all around much of the room in various poses. Some were posed glamourously, others in almost defensive-looking positions. It almost looks like this is a workshop, or some sort of sculptor's studio, she thought as she turned to her left and saw a familiar yellow and green clad figure which she almost mistook for a statue. "Shadow Lady?" Angie said haltingly. The figure she saw was motionless, like it was frozen in a moment of time.
"Beautiful, isn't she?" said a voice to her right. An armored man stepped out from behind a stack of boxes.
"Who?" she answered, startled by the broken silence.
"Just the one who has immortalized both of your friends." he gestured to one of the white statues.
Angie looked again and realized one of the statues looked uncannily like...Sue! It was Sue! She was frozen, albeit differently, just like Dee was. And another statue was dressed as Cosmic Girl! She was so distracted when she turned her head that she failed to hear a noise from the celing above her. Panels from the celing dropped open like a trap door, unleashing a flood of white plaster which cascaded down upon Flamestar's yellow-clad body. As it dropped and made contact with the floor and Angie's shapely form the plaster hardened instantly, freezing her in mid-flight in a mass which looked like a frozen waterfall of white. Like her other teammates, Angie was only aware for a micro-second what was happening to her before her world went dark. She was caught looking up, her left arm raised and totally engulfed in the frozen torrent. Her right arm emerged from the solid mass just past her elbow. The instant-hardening shower had frozen her arched body in such a way that her tight buttocks were projecting from one side of the frozen plaster and her breasts and shoulders on the other side. Flamestar's left leg was bent at the hip and knee so that it emerged from the hard prison while her right leg became totally encased in frozen slopes of plaster. Bits of plaster were frozen in an upward bounce, as it struck the floor, like inverted icicles or some sort of bizzare curved stalagmites.
"What's going on here?" yelled a startled Crimson Sorceress as she stepped through an open door to the studio just seconds after Flamestar had been encased. She had been following a series of winding corridors which led her to a lighted, open door. When she thought she heard voices, she had dashed into the room, just in time to see her fiery teammate being encased in a mountain of plaster. Instinctively, she bent over and threw both of her arms forward as she prepared to cast a defensive spell.
"Just a little surprise party!" answered a voice from the helmeted man as he shot a thick stream of plaster towards the Sorceress with astonishing speed and accuracy. The gooey plaster completely enveloped both of her hands up to her wrists and flowed to the ground to harden into a pillar.
Startled by the swiftness of the attack, Wanda instinctively tried to pull away from the hardened mass which had encased her hands. With her hands rendered immobile, she was unable to do the necessary motions to cast a spell. Her torso was almost parallel to the ground as she struggled, spreading her legs for more leverage. And then the mystery man unleashed another two streams of plaster which covered each of her feet to her ankles, essentially glueing her to the spot with hardened plaster. "No!" she screamed as she struggled unsuccessfuly to extricate herself from the rock-hard plaster which bound her. "Ungghh! What...is this stuff?" she yelled in her vain attempts at freedom. She looked almost like a human saw-horse, when the plaster pillar rooting her arms to the ground were taken into consideration.
"It is a unique combination of my special quick-hardening plaster and a little something I discovered quite by accident," the armored man boasted as he strode towards the helplessly trapped heroine.
"Who are you?" Wanda demanded.
"You may call me...the Plaster Master!"
"What have you done to my friends?" Wanda looked at beautiful Flamestar, frozen in a mass of white like some sort of marble frieze. Shadow Lady was still as a waxwork figure and poor Sue was nothing more than a statue of plaster. Cosmic Girl, another vision in white, lay on her back, her stiffened legs straight up in the air. They had all become some sort of strange sculpture, looking just like all the other works of art in the room.
"Don't you like them this way?" he said, seemingly taken aback by her confrontational tone. "I think they make exquisite sculpture. Shadow Lady has been preserved by a special chemical solution I created. I call it statue-spray because whatever it is sprayed upon becomes as hard and solid as a statue. I was once an artist with great aspirations to become a sculptor of beautiful women. But I was frustrated with the time and methods used in both sculpting clay and catering to fussy, uncooperative models so I used my rather extensive teachings in chemicals to try and create something which would solidify the clay more quickly. After a series of discoveries, I finally stumbled upon a formula which would instantly harden whatever it was sprayed upon." He walked around the captive Wanda and began to unclasp the cape around her neck.
"Stop!" she yelled, suddenly feeling very vulnerable.
"My dear, you are in no position to demand anything," he said, admiring her backside thrust backwards and up into the air. "One night in the middle of a long sculpting session, my model, whom I had asked to pose motionless for over three hours in order to finish my work--artists can be quite one-track minded, don't you agree?" he leaned forward to look directly in Wanda's face. "Anyway, after three hours of standing still, she was quite disoriented and stiff and was about to fall off the model's stand. Instinctively, she tried to brace herself on the shelves behind her and caused the containers of my special hardening solution to spill onto her body. I, in my one mindedness, rushed forward only to see my precious solution splattered over the floor." He started to unzip the back of her costume.
"I'm warning you...don't do this," Wanda felt him pull her outer scarlet one-piece down to her waist, causing her breasts to move more freely under her sheer pink bodystocking.
"I was about to curse her for being so clumsy," he continued, taking out a small pocket-knife and slitting the side-seams of her one-piece. "When I realized she was frozen stiff in the position of shielding herself from the falling liquid. Fascinated, I touched her and found every part of her body from the hairs on her head to her skin had become hard as stone to the touch. I was suddenly inspired to sculpt another clay statue and worked for 24 hours straight, sculpting from my now completely motionless model as inspiration." Plaster Master removed the one-piece from around Wanda's hips and began to slit the pink bodystocking on her left side.
Wanda gasped. "What are you? Some sort of sick perv-No!" she lost her train of thought as he suddenly pulled the stocking from her. She was now completely nude with the exception of her gloves and boots encased in plaster. Her tanned body was completely exposed and her ample breasts were free to hang unrestricted. This can't be happening to me, she thought. Please stop...
"It wasn't until two days later that a pair of police detectives arrived at my studio. They had gotten my name and address from the model's apartment and were checking into her disappearance. Panicking, I poured a pail of liquid plaster which I used to cast from over my immobile model to disguise her. The detectives came in and asked me when was the last time I saw her. I lied and said she went home after I completed the sculpting the statue of her the fateful night when she became a living statue. On the way out, one of the detectives complimented me on the statue of her! He said it looked exactly like her! She's right over there, my first masterpiece. I just couldn't bear to part with her," he pointed to a nude figure, frozen into a plaster display, next to the paralyzed figure of Transparency Girl. "Dear Andrea, who has made all of this possible."
They look so alike, their poses, thought Wanda. Each caught completely unaware, helpless to resist the statue-spray effect. Now immortalized under a coat of plaster. Forever beautiful...She snapped at the man with her teeth, shaking her head as he took hold of her bare arm, stroking it to the elbow. "Let me go! Now!"
Plaster Master laughed and began to cut away the portions of Wanda's gloves and boots which remained uncoated with the hardened plaster. "I eventually discovered that I could mix portions of the statue-spray and a special liquid plaster I developed to create an instant hardening spray which could turn a model into a statue instantly! I call it 'body-casting' a subject! Quietly, I moved all my operations to this location and have lurked here for months, immortalizing lovely ladies and selling some as realistic works of art to finance my ongoing work. When you returned I just knew I had to have you become parts of my personal collection so I went to work adapting this warehouse complex with all sorts of booby traps which could trap your teammates. The public appearance at the mall only made it easier to get you to fall into my little scheme!"
"You sick fiend!" she said, defiantly, now wearing only her crimson headdress.
"And now you have the honor of becoming beautiful forever. Let's see, how should I start..." He used the barrel of his weapon to trace the lines of Wanda's exposed back muscles, letting a tiny bit of plaster dripped out of the nozzle. She winced as the cold metal gun followed the small of her back to the cleft of her buttocks. "Hmmm...perhaps we should start here?" he teased, moving the nozzle down her firm ass to between her legs.
"No!" she pleaded. "Please...no..."
"I know!" he exclaimed, suddenly sounding like inspiration had just struck him. He quickly turned away and left the room, his footsteps echoing in the high ceilinged room.
For the next few minutes, which seemed like hours to the restrained heroine, Wanda was left alone in the studio with only dozens of frozen women for company. Each statue reflected the anguished, fearful feelings which were building withing her. "I've got to get out of here. If only there was some way I could free my hands..." she muttered to herself. She felt completely violated, standing naked in a provocative bent-over position with her legs spread apart. And it will only get worse from here on, she suddenly realized.
After what seemed like an eternity, the Plaster Master returned carrying two large buckets of plaster in both of his hands. He wasn't wearing gloves anymore and his sleeves were rolled up to his elbows. "I will immortalize you like your friends, eventually, but since I have you in this delicious predicament..." He plopped the pails to one side of Wanda. She looked astonished as if he really wasn't going to do what she thought he was going to do.
"You...you're going.." she said haltingly. He began to tie Wanda's long curly hair into a ponytail so that it was away from her body.
"Make a body cast of you!" he finished for her, his mouth spread into a diabolical smile. Plaster Master stooped and wiped off his hands. He scooped a large handful of vaseline from a jar he obtained out of his pocket. "A little dab'll do you!" he grinned and spread his hands over Wanda's pubic hairs. His fingers migrated to her genetalia a number of times as Wanda squealed in distress. "We wouldn't want this casting to have any problems now, would we?" He said, making sure her groin was liberally coated with slippery vaseline. She cursed at him as he then plunged both of his hands into the thick gooey white substance and held it over her back. "This isn't my quick-hardening formula, but good old-fashioned plaster-of-paris! I made it extra thick and creamy just for you!" He slapped the ice-cold blob of plaster onto her bare skin and began to smooth it out over her back.
"Ooooh!" Wanda moaned as the cold plaster momentarily caused her to forget her peril. She felt him spread it around her shoulders, and across her bare arms to the plaster-encased hands attached to the plaster pole. "Stop this now...please..." she begged but could do nothing as he began to massage it into the crack of her derriere. Drops of plaster dribbled onto the concrete floor around her plastered feet.
He scooped out another handful of plaster from the buckets and applied it liberally over her pubic area, making sure every crevice was filled with plaster.
"Ahhh...soo cold..." the Sorceress moaned, tensing her body.
Plaster Master began to work the sticky goop around her stomach and up to her hanging breasts. He molded them in his hands, making sure the plaster covered every inch of visible skin and coated her nipples completely. "You know, I'm finding this most enjoyable," he smiled slyly. Then he began to work up and down her long tanned legs, running his hands over her thighs and calves with great pleasure. "You know, you are going to make an absolutely gorgeous statue my dear!"
Wanda was completely coated in a thick coat of plaster from her neck to her toes now, and could feel it beginning to get warm as it started to set. It's getting hard as rock and I'll be trapped inside, she thought.
"Let's see, now...should I do your face as well?" said the smiling villain. He saw Wanda's astonished reaction of both disbelief and fear and chuckled. "No, I think when I statue-spray you I'll get the desired expression."
"You won't get away with this you sick pervert!" seethed Wanda.
"That plaster I have coated you with is extra-slow setting, so you'll be like this for hours. I suggest you get...comfortable. It's going to be a long night! And I have an appointment with a few new models at the "front" for my studio downtown! I'll see you soon, to prepare you for immortality!" He packed up his belongings and headed for the door. 'Do try and get in the mood for your statue, like your friends..." he gestured at her frozen colleagues and exited laughing heartily.
"Unghfhh!" Wanda tried to move but couldn't budge in her slow-setting plaster prison. I've got to get free or somehow summon help, she thought. Minutes passed, and the plaster continued to harden around her sexy body. If there was only some way to contact headquarters! Our resident robot RT-10 could free me if I could only contact him! And I'm still wearing my wrist communicator under my glove, it's just sealed inside my plaster bonds. Maybe I could somehow trigger the emergency beacon or something. She strained to twist--to try to twitch--her encased wrists. They didn't budge at all. 'Come on!" she angrily yelled in the deserted room. "Move!" She continued to struggle for what seemed like hours. The really crazy thing about this, she realized, is that I'll never know if I somehow manage to trip the signal button or not. Between her struggling and the warming plaster, she had managed to work up quite a sweat. I can't give up, she tried to force herself to continue. More time passed, the plaster tightened more and grew hotter and hotter as it hardened. She was starting to get delerious from the heat, starting to swoon... "Concentrate.." she said aloud to herself, for none of her teammates could hear her in their frozen state. "Unghhh...." she moaned, trying to fight off unconsciosness. She tried to exert herself one more time, but passed out, her chin dipping into the plaster as her head hung in defeat.
"Wake up, my dear!" Plaster Master chirped.
Wanda stirred, trying to reorient herself after she had blacked out. As she slowly regained consciousness, she remembered what had happened to her and her teammates. How they had become living art and how she had been coated in plaster. She looked around and found herself nude, without the hardened plaster around her. "Wha-?" she spoke, "The plaster cast, it's gone!" Quickly trying to re-orient herself, she found her hands had a thin coat of hardened plaster which immobilized her fingers and her wrists were shackled by chains stretching to the sides of the room. "How? How did you remove the plaster around my hands and feet? I-I thought it was indestructible?"
"Yes, while you were unconscious, the plaster hardened completely around your voluptuous form," Plaster Master answered. "When I returned, I found you gloriously frozen in the same shape in which I left you and removed the casting from you." He gestured to a statue, posed in the same way Wanda had been encased. "That's your body, captured in every detail by my plaster! I made a quick cast mold from you and there's the finished result!" He began to strap the twin portable tanks onto his back. "I used a special solvent of my design, which is the only thing my statue-sprayed plaster is susceptible to, to remove your hands and feet. Once you were free, I thinly coated your hands again to prevent any possibility of you escaping. I then made the little memento you see before you. It and you, once you are preserved, will be reminders of the wonderful time I had tonight!" He removed his weapon from its holster and pointed it menacingly at Wanda.
Wanda studied the pure white casting in front of her, wondering if that's what she would look like when she was coated. It was sleek and sexy work in pristine white which duplicated every inch of her body from her neck to her toes. She watched as Plaster Master strode away to his "collection" of statues lining the walls.
"As you can see from my other works, every minute detail from the pores of your skin to every delicate hair will be preserved forever!" He continued, walking up to the frozen figure of Sue, touching her frozen hair and placing a hand on her hardened shoulder. "Let me see, how should I immortalize you? Like your friends, Transparency Girl and Cosmic Girl in 'body casts'?" He turned to the v-spread legs of the upside-down Cosmic Girl and ran his hands over the smooth surface of the statue's calves before moving on to the mannequin which was once Shadow Lady. "Or should I preserve you in a coat of statue-spray alone? And then there's something to be said for the frieze effect, or something more artsy, perhaps?" He smiled, admiring Flamestar's encased body and finally twisted a dial on his pistol, setting it for a mixture of equal parts statue-spray and liquid plaster. "I think you would look better in white, my dear!" He aimed his weapon at Wanda's nude form.
Wanda stared at the pistol in Plaster Master's hand, knowing her time as a statue was at hand. She and the others would become pretty decorations, trophies to Plaster Master's triumph. Struggling against the chains which bound her, she pleaded, "Noooo!"
"That's it, resist, you'll make a lovelier statue that way," he boasted. Taking aim, he began to squeeze the trigger...
And then the ceiling exploded.
Plaster Master's spray blast, his aim thrown off by the rain of debris, just missed Wanda's body. She twisted out of the way as one of the chains anchored to the wall came unbolted. She blinked, looking at the early morning sunlight streaming through the collapsed roof. Some of the nude statues against the wall had fallen off their pedestals, but being encased in unbreakable statue-spray plaster, were undamaged. Wanda recognized the nose of their old Fem-cruiser emerging into the room. "Who?" she began, then suddenly realized, "Artie!"
The squat robot emerged from the dust coming from the ceiling and hovered down to Wanda. RT-10 was the loyal service robot created to maintain and support the Fem-Fantastique, Inc. HQ building. His lower body was an inverted half sphere, with a mechanical torso and extendable arms ending in mechanical claws. His oval-shaped cranial compartment had a thin optic sensor strip and ear-like radar/sensor units on each side. Artie, as the members of F.F., Inc. fondly referred to him, scanned for the plaster-wielding villain as he began to use his claw saw to cut her chains. "Assailant-incapacitated-Mistress-Wanda-this-unit-will-free-you," he said in his classic-robot monotone voice.
Wanda, now freed from her chains, squinted for any sort of movement. "Careful, Artie," she cautioned. "He's a tricky one. He took out all of us in mere minutes." She looked around, spotting a metal cannister laying on its side. "That wasn't here last night," she remarked, using her plaster coated hands to point. "It must be the plaster solvent."
Artie hovered over to the cannister and extended a claw to retrieve the solvent. He began to unscrew the top. "Hold-your-hands-out-Mistress-Wanda," he instructed.
"Artie! Look out!" Wanda shouted noticing Plaster Master crawling from underneath some debris and aiming his weapon at Artie's back.
A blast of gooey plaster struck Artie, shoving him into and gluing him to the wall. "System-alert-this-unit's-maneuverability-has-been-restricted," Artie cried out to Wanda in an unemotional tone, the open cannister of solvent still clutched in his metallic claw.
"Damn!" Wanda shouted, running for cover. Her hands were still frozen, and with her nudity, she felt most vulnerable. Diving behind the pedestals of some of the statues, she crawled to some tarp-covered crates to escape being coated.
Plaster Master staggered to his feet. His helmet had probably saved him from a concussion, but his ears were still ringing from the ceiling collapse. He looked through the thick dust for the Crimson Sorceress. Her hands are still frozen, he thought. She's still helpless and the robot can't help her now. He smiled at the thought of hunting her down and freezing her in her tracks with a blast of plaster. All the better, he grinned.
Wanda silently observed the Plaster Master from her hiding place. He's coming this way, she thought. What can I do? she wondered frantically. I can't even pick up anything with these plaster coated hands of mine! Wait a minute! It's crazy, but it might just work. She waited for him to come closer, and braced her bare shoulder against the tarp covered crates shielding her. That's it, come closer...If this doesn't work, I better get used to being a statue...
Plaster Master limped to the stack of crates protecting Wanda. His finger poised on the trigger of his pistol, waiting to fire at the slightest movement. He thought of the moment when he could examine his newest statue, frozen in surprise, and gloat in her frozen face.
Now! Wanda shouted in her mind. She shoved the heavy crates with all her strength and the stack began to topple over.
Plaster Master raised his pistol and fired at the sound of the falling boxes, encasing the descending crates and tarp in a super-hard coat of plaster. "Nooo!" he screamed as the tarp, coated in hardened plaster and partially glued to some of the wooden boxes fell onto him, pinning him under their weight.
"It worked!" Wanda exclaimed, noticing the tangled plastered mass of wood and canvas, fused together into a makeshift plaster prison. She dashed over to Artie. "Are you okay, Artie?" She sounded worried, as if her robotic friend could actually feel emotions like pain and suffering. "Can you tip the solvent cannister?"
"Affirmative-Mistress-Wanda," Artie answered, tilting the cannister so that the solvent poured on the Sorceress' plastered hands.
The plaster began to liquefy and dissolve almost instantly, to Wanda's relief. She then slipped the cannister from RT-10's claw and poured it over the plaster encasing him to the wall. "We're going to have to find a lot more of this stuff," she observed, looking at the many statue victims surrounding her. "And I'm going to need something to wear when the cops arrive," she noted, wrapping her nude body in one of the dusty white tarps nearby. "I'm going to have enough problems explaining all of this..."
Three days later, all of the plastered victims in Plaster Master's hideout had been restored to normalcy. The plaster dissolving solvent was easy enough to replicate, given Artie's chemical anlalyzing capability, but it had taken two more days to devise a counter-agent which could release the frozen women from their statue-sprayed state. Apparently, the liquid acted like some sort of suspended-animation process and none of the victims were any worse for wear than the day they were coated. "The police are tracking down the statues Plaster Master sold," Dee said, hanging up the vid-phone. "They expect to find them all within a few weeks."
"Well a few hours of being a plastered statue were quite enough for me," Darlene replied, sitting at the desk across the room. "I can't imagine being a statue for months, like all those poor women."
"Tell me about it," Dee said, crossing her legs. "I mean, it's not like I remember anything while I was frozen or anything, but to be like that forever..."
"Morning, everyone!" chirped Wanda, walking by the monitor room. "How are you all feeling?"
"Well, there's no ill effects," replied Susan looking up from the morning paper. "It's just another weird case to file away."
"At least we won't be seeing that creep anytime soon," added Flamestar, sipping a mug full of coffee. "Dee just said the police are going to have Plaster Master locked up for a long time. He's facing charges of kidnapping, aggravated assault, theft and a whole bunch of other charges." She took a bite out of a toasted bagel and perused the business section of the paper.
"Well, that's good news." Wanda said. "But if there's one good thing that came out of this is I learned not to rely on my spell-casting ability too much. And if it weren't for Artie's timely arrival, we would all have been museum pieces. By the way, when did you get my signal, Artie? For a moment, I thought for sure I was going to become his latest statue. You really made that entry in the nick of time."
RT-10 turned his torso to face the Crimson Sorceress. "This-unit-never-received-a-distress-beacon-Mistress-Wanda."
"What?" said Sue in a startled tone, looking up from the main news. "Then how did you know we were in trouble?"
"And you purposely crashed the Fem-cruiser through the roof to distract Plaster Master, right?" asked Wanda.
Artie hesitated, "This-unit-actually-underestimated-the-strength-of-the-warehouse-roof-as-a-landing-platform."
Dee shook her head and grinned widely, while Sue and Angie looked at each other in disbelief and returned to the morning paper. Cosmic Girl wandered off, muttering something about blind luck. "Oh Artie," Wanda finally said. "I still appreciate you coming to my rescue." She leaned over and lightly kissed Artie's chrome plated head. As she walked away, she noticed a slight waver in his ruby optical stripe. Almost as if Artie was...blushing? I guess there's more to Artie than just a bunch of microchips and metal parts. There may be hope for him, yet!
TO BE CONTINUED IN... "HARDBODIES"
author's note: While the author had tons of fun writing this installment, concluding this chapter bedeviled him. If the ending to this story seems somewhat contrived, or even weak, it is because the author wrote himself into a corner and was at a loss on how to extricate the heroines from their plastered fate. The author would also like to acknowledge the suggestions and ideas of the asfr chatroom in solving the dilemma of how to end this story. A special thank you to Alex, who caught a glaring plot hole in an early draft. Thanks, Alex!