Menace of the Mighty Microns!
The empty factory was cold and its chambers seemed cavernous to the tiny figures that filed into it one by one. Atop an abandoned workstation, they saw Dr. Milton Raton (otherwise known as the Mouse Man) lounging upon a makeshift throne formed from overturned milk cartons. Like his furry namesake, Dr. Raton was around two inches tall. He was clad in a gray costume with a long pink tail and wore a headpiece affixed with large round ears and a whiskered nose-guard.
“Welcome, my friends!” he called to the new arrivals. “Come forward! Join me!”
The Mouse Man gestured to a doll-sized ladder beside the workstation. The small beings each ascended this (or flew to the top under their own power) and gathered before the throne. Milton rose from his seat, beaming excitedly at the assembly.
The tiny creatures stood in a semi-circle, muttering amongst themselves suspiciously. Each had received the Mouse Man’s invitation but was skeptical as to its purpose.
“Thank you for answering my summons,” Milton said. “As you know, I am the magnificent Mouse Man. Some of you may know each other by reputation but allow me to make introductions.”
He turned to a three-inch-tall man dressed in a bodysuit of blue and white. A cowl covered the top of his head and he wore a yellow belt with an atomic symbol on its circular clasp. In his hand was a long, menacing Bowie knife which he periodically flipped and caught by the hilt.
“This is Dwarfstar, size-changing foe of the Atom…” Milton declared. Dwarfstar gave an unsettling grin.
Beside him was an ugly green caterpillar-like creature about two inches long. Large white bug-eyes surveyed the group and the pincers of its mouth clicked disapprovingly. Hanging around its neck was a tiny electronic speaker.
“…Mr. Mind, Venusian mind-worm and enemy of Captain Marvel…”
Next in line was a beautiful blonde woman who stood only half an inch tall. A tight purple leotard hugged her minuscule figure and she sported a long yellow cape and matching gloves and boots.
“…Lesla-Lar, ‘science criminal’ of the Bottle City of Kandor and rival of Supergirl…”
If Lesla was the smallest of the group, the being beside her was by far the largest. At a foot tall, he towered enormously over the others (though he was a mere dwarf by human standards). The somber creature was dressed in high-tech gray armor with an elaborate and oddly shaped helmet.
“…and Devouris the Conqueror, the so-called, um, Eater of Worlds.”
‘Very small ones, no doubt,’ Milton thought to himself. ‘If it’s not just boastful bravado.’ He felt it wise not to offend his guest however.
“The others I have summoned remain invisible to the naked eye,” the Mouse Man said. He gestured to a small Soder-Cola bottle cap lying nearby. “However, we arranged to meet at this time on that very spot. Dwarfstar, if you would be so kind?”
Dwarfstar grinned wider. “You got it, boss.” He stepped over to the bottle cap, turned a knob on his belt buckle, and instantly began to dwindle in size. In seconds, he descended to a microscopic range and vanished completely from sight.
A few moments later, he returned to his previous three-inch height, accompanied by two individuals who could not be more different. Dwarfstar had used the white dwarf radiation of his bio-belt to enlarge these new arrivals, bringing them from sub-atomic size to roughly his own dimensions. The first was a redheaded woman with cold green eyes and regal bearing. She was clad in a slinky emerald dress with a plunging neckline and high shoulder pads. On her forehead, she bore a golden crown.
“Allow me to introduce Queen Atomia of the Atom Galaxy,” the Mouse Man said. “Like myself, an adversary of that Amazonian harridan, Wonder Woman.”
The others bowed or politely nodded their heads to the tiny queen. They next turned to Atomia’s companion and immediately wished they hadn’t.
Beside the queen floated a hideous entity that resembled a yellow pulsating mushroom with the legs of a praying mantis. A faint golden glow filled the area surrounding the creature and those closest to it were overcome by a sudden uneasiness and fear.
“And this is the final member of our company,” Mouse Man announced with pride, “Despotellis, sentient virus of the Sinestro Corps.”
The other villains gasped and took a few steps back. Despotellis was one of the most feared enemies of the intergalactic Green Lantern Corps. At full strength, the virus could wipe out an entire planet’s population in days.
Thankfully, Despotellis was not at full strength. It had been weakened by a battle with the Green Lantern Leezle Pon (a sentient smallpox virus) and by the experiments of Dr. Soranik Natu, the Lantern medic who sought to cure Despotellis’ pestilence. Only the Mouse Man knew of the virus’ weakened state from their previous correspondence. He chose not to share this with the others just yet.
“All right, so now we know each other,” Mr. Mind said haughtily, his voice crackling through the amplifying speaker on his neck. “Well and good. But just what have you brought us here for?”
“Indeed,” added Devouris. “Thou darest much to summon the terrible Devouris, Earth-man. What is thy purpose?”
The Mouse Man adopted an air of solemnity as he addressed the crowd. “My friends, each of us has been wronged by the superhuman community, dismissed and ignored for our…shared condition.”
“Cause we’re all so teensy, right, boss?” Dwarfstar interjected.
“Er, yes. Quite,” Mouse Man stammered. “Thank you, Dwarfstar. What I propose is that we form an alliance. We shall be a team of miniature menaces to reign terror upon the superheroes. In their arrogance, this world’s defenders will never suspect us. We will be underestimated, considered a non-threat. But through stealth and guile and our collective genius, we will utterly destroy them. Ladies and gentlemen, I propose that we kill the Justice League.”
This statement hung in the air like a pall as the gathered criminals considered it. At last, the moment was broken when Lesla began to laugh hysterically.
“Bwahahahaha! You’re kidding me, right?” She snorted derisively and tried to compose herself. “This lot kill the League? Despotellis might be able to manage it. Maybe. Assuming Earth’s Green Lantern hasn’t inoculated them against his poison. But what in Rao’s name do you expect the rest of us to do?”
“I must concur with Ms. Lar,” said Mr. Mind. “I see no tactical advantage to a team such as this. Surely we would be better served by hiring larger creatures as muscle, whilst we plan our stratagems behind the scenes. That was always my method when I led the Monster Society.”
“I myself have many henchmen,” Queen Atomia announced. “A vast legion of Neutron Robots. Enlarge them, as you have me, and we shall sweep over this world like a cleansing fire!”
“Devouris tires of thy folly, Earthlings,” the armor-clad alien declared. “He shall return to the depths of space and contemplate the infinite.”
“Silence, all of you!” the Mouse Man shrieked. “No goons, no henchmen, no larger creatures! It must be us, don’t you see? It’s the principle of the thing! David vs. Goliath! The small and meek triumphing over our loutish oppressors! Have you no confidence in yourselves? No backbone? Are we men or mice?!”
“I thought you were both,” said Dwarfstar.
“Never mind that! At least hear me out! This plan will work, I swear it!”
Listen to him, an icy voice intoned. Despotellis had spoken at last, or rather had beamed its thoughts directly into their minds with its yellow power ring. The group felt a chill run down their backs.
“Let me explain,” said Mouse Man. “I’m not suggesting that we take on Superman or the Martian Manhunter or anyone like that.”
“Or Wonder Woman?” asked Dwarfstar with a cocky smile.
The Mouse Man bristled at the mention of his hated archenemy. “No. Not her either. Not yet. We start smaller, if you’ll excuse the pun. Strike the League when they are weakest. And I know the perfect opportunity. I have received intelligence from my vast network of spies—”
“Your mice,” said Dwarfstar.
“Yes, my mice,” Mouse Man snapped in annoyance. He was beginning to regret recruiting Dwarfstar to the group. “They have informed me of a gathering of several Justice Leaguers. Second- or third-tier members at best and all female at that. The weaker sex. Er, present company excluded, dear ladies.”
“Watch it, rodent,” Lesla sneered, her eyes glowing a menacing red. Though she only came up to the Mouse Man’s knee, Lesla-Lar possessed all the powers of a Kryptonian under Earth’s yellow sun. Unfortunately, her last escape from the shrunken Bottle City had been without the aid of a re-enlarging ray.
“According to my agents—my mice—” Mouse Man corrected himself before Dwarfstar could speak. “—the fools are gathering for some sort of insipid ‘ladies’ night.’ It is then that we shall strike!”
“Now pay close attention,” he continued. “I have devised a plan and have a role for each of us. I shall serve as leader, coordinating our efforts by—”
“Why you?” asked Mr. Mind, his bug-eyes narrowing.
“I beg your pardon?”
“Why you?” the worm said again. “I am the former leader of the Monster Society of Evil, a renowned genius and master of telepathy and mind control. Surely I should be leading this assault.”
The Mouse Man clenched his tiny fists but held himself in check. “No one doubts your power or your experience, Mind. But this is, after all, my plan and my team. And I have need of your mental abilities in the field.”
“Very well,” said Mind. “But I dislike taking orders from anyone.”
“As do I,” Atomia agreed. “I am a queen, not some lowly underling to be issued commands!”
“Devouris concurs,” the would-be world-eater said. “He does not answer to lesser beings.”
The Mouse Man nearly exploded in fury but once again took a deep breath and composed himself. “If it helps, you may consider yourselves co-chiefs of our organization.”
Lesla frowned and put her hands on her hips. “Hey, wait a minute! Why do they get to be—?”
“Fine! We’re equal partners, all right?! No leaders!” Mouse Man shouted. “Now may I please continue?”
“Speak, Earth-man,” said Devouris. “Tell us what thou wouldst.”
* * * *
A few hours later, the Mouse Man and his team stood assembled on a rooftop overlooking their target, an oval-shaped art deco building in downtown Washington, D.C. The tiny tyrant was preparing to order his warriors into the field.
“Everyone knows their role?” he asked.
“Like a book, boss-man,” Dwarfstar said.
All is in readiness, Despotellis added. The heroes shall soon know fear.
“Excellent. Now, when I give the signal—”
Devouris reached into a compartment on his belt and removed a small green globe. “First, Devouris must send forth his herald to prophesize the destruction of their world.”
As he held it out, the item suddenly floated into the air and began to twist and writhe, altering in shape.
“Your what?” said the Mouse Man. “That’s not part of the plan!”
“This is how it has been done since time immemorial,” the dwarfish alien insisted.
“Damn it, Devouris! It’s a stealth attack! We’re not supposed to announce our arrival!”
The green blob coalesced into the shape of a tiny but feature-less humanoid creature perched in what appeared to be a flying toboggan.
“What’s that idiot doing now?” Lesla spat.
“Behold the Genetixos!” Devouris declared. He held out his hands towards the little green figure and energy sprang from his fingers, bathing the doll-sized creature in light. “I imbue thee with the Strength Celestial! Go forth, my herald, and do my bidding!”
As the green being floated serenely towards the building, Mouse Man desperately barked orders to the others.
“Change of plans! Now! Go now!”
* * * *
Meanwhile, at the Hall of Justice (the Justice League’s embassy linked via teleporters to their orbiting Watchtower), a group of heroines was enjoying a celebratory drink. Gathered around the table were Supergirl, the Last Daughter of Krypton; Zatanna, top-hatted lady magician; Vixen, master of the animal-powered Tantu Totem; Jade, green-skinned offspring of the original Green Lantern; Jesse Quick, super-strong speedster; and Mera, Queen of Atlantis.
“Here’s to surviving another crisis, ladies,” Zatanna said, hoisting her glass. “Thanks for coming tonight, by the way. It’s nice to have some time to just hang out. You know, before the next alien invasion, world-conquering despot, or Multiverse-threatening cosmic event.”
“I hear that,” said Jesse, pouring herself some wine. “It was almost a cosmic event getting Rick to watch the baby tonight. I told him Hourman’s ‘hour of power’ can wait. Mama needs to get her drink on.”
Supergirl snickered and leaned over to whisper to Mera. “Guess we know who wears the pants in that house, huh?”
The redheaded Atlantean glanced at the short shorts of Jesse’s uniform and arched an eyebrow.
“Well, I didn’t mean literally!” Supergirl protested.
“What are we drinking, by the way?” asked Jade.
“A Themysciran red,” Vixen told her. “From the finest wine-makers of Paradise Island.”
The green-hued heroine took another sip. “Hmm. Not bad. Has a lot of body to it.”
“So did the wine-makers,” said Vixen. “Amazons, am I right? They probably don’t even exercise!”
The heroines looked up suddenly as a shrill alarm began to blare throughout the building. Someone or something had triggered the proximity sensors. The Hall of Justice was under attack.
Jesse Quick sped to a nearby control board and inspected the report on the screen. “It looks like we have an intruder. No one’s showing up on the security cameras though.”
“What did I tell ya?” said Zatanna. “A new crisis already. Never a dull moment.”
Vixen walked up behind Jesse and looked over her shoulder at the security feed. As her teammate had said, there was no one to be seen on the monitors. The ebony beauty leaned in closer, perplexed. “What do you think, Jess? Invisibility? Cloaking tech?”
“Not sure, Mari. It’s almost like—wait! I see someone! He’s—he’s right on top of us!”
The women turned as a tiny green-skinned man riding a flying sled phased right through the wall. He came to a halt above the round meeting table and hovered over their heads pensively.
“Hearken ye, mortals!” the green man said. “I am the Genetixos, herald of the almighty Devouris! The Conqueror has come! Pray to thy gods for this world’s hour of death is at hand!”
“Devouris?” Zatanna repeated. “Never heard of him. That name ring a bell with any of you?”
“Can’t say that it does, Zee,” said Jade.
“Atlantis knows him not,” Mera added.
Vixen reached up to poke the little green elf with a fingertip. “What do you suppose this thing is, some kind of probe?”
The Genetixos backed away from the huge feminine finger and floated higher. “Accost me at thy peril, mortal!”
The front of the tiny sled suddenly morphed into a pair of guns that shot forth two quick blasts of electricity. Vixen yelped in pain and pulled her hand away from the sudden shock.
“Oh, you did NOT just do that!” she snarled.
“Whatever it is, it’s hostile,” said Zatanna. “Somebody catch it!”
The heroines leapt to their feet and began to chase the tiny herald. Genetixos zipped about the room with incredible speed, staying just ahead of the huge grasping hands that attempted to capture him. He swooped this way and that, circling about the ladies’ heads, under their legs, bouncing off the top of Zatanna’s hat, and even whooshing through the thick red curtain of Mera’s hair. Supergirl and Jesse charged after him at full speed but only succeeded in crashing into each other. Jade tried to enclose him in a bubble of green energy but the creature phased straight through it.
At last, Zatanna had had enough. She raised her hands, focused her will on the Genetixos, and cast a spell. “Elttil gniylf nam, pots!”
The herald suddenly froze in mid-flight. The twinkly ion trail he had left in his wake gradually faded as his every motion ceased. Satisfied, the magician took a step forward and reached out to pluck the little thing from the air. As a slender hand closed around his tiny body, the Genetixos exploded in her grip like a popping grape. A sickening green goo oozed between Zatanna’s fingers, dripping down to the floor.
“Eww!” the sorceress cried. She shook her hand vigorously, trying to fling away the slimy remnants.
“You killed it,” said Supergirl.
“Wasn’t trying to,” Zatanna insisted. “I barely touched it. It just sort of…went kerblooey.”
Down at Zatanna’s feet, several semi-solid puddles of goo began to bubble and writhe. After a moment, the green gel started to slither away like half a dozen tiny garden snakes.
“It’s still alive!” Jade called. “There it goes!”
Before anyone could give pursuit, the alarm blared to life again. Once more, Jesse was at the control board.
“Multiple breaches!” she exclaimed. “We’ve got hostiles in the monitor room, the teleport bay, the hangar, the trophy hall—We’re being invaded!”
“What are we dealing with?” said Vixen.
“Again, there’s no one on the screen,” Jesse answered, clearly puzzled. “But the sensors are going nuts!”
“Fan out, ladies,” Zatanna told her teammates. “There’s something really weird going on here.”
* * * *
Speaking the scientific mantra that unlocked her powers, Jesse Quick was off like a shot. At superhuman speed, she made a circuit of the entire building but saw no sign of the intruders. It made no sense. How could they evade her? How could they stay hidden when every piece of equipment was blaring its electronic warning? She thought of the little floating man in the meeting room. It was clearly some sort of shapeshifter. Could the others possess the same abilities? Were they all around her even now, disguised as ordinary items?
She was pondering this as she sped into the trophy room that served as a museum for the public. In truth, this was the second time she’d passed through. This time she eyed every item in the hall carefully, seeking for a tell-tale sign that things were not what they seemed.
Queen Atomia crouched in a corner, hiding behind a display case containing the Gamma-Gong of Kanjar Ro (a non-working replica of it at least). If the towering speedster was inspecting every nook and cranny, Atomia knew she could not stay hidden for long.
‘Hmm. The swift one grows suspicious,’ she thought to herself.
Jesse raced from one display case to the next, drawing ever closer to the atomic monarch’s sanctuary. Each time she ran, the ground below Atomia shook from the impact of the heroine’s footfalls. Violent quakes that lasted only a few seconds shook the earth. Soon, Atomia had to fight to keep her balance.
When Jesse stopped to inspect the glass case and the gong, the tiny villainess saw two huge red boots planted dangerously close on either side of her. Mortified, Atomia realized she had come within a hair’s breadth of being stepped on. Thankfully, the giantess had not yet looked down. Atomia craned her neck back and stared up at the long, muscular bare legs that stretched into the sky above. Satisfied with her inspection of the Gamma-Gong, Jesse sped off again, forcing the tiny queen to press herself tight against the wall of the case for protection.
It took a few moments for Atomia to catch her breath. Once she had done so, she returned to her mission. The minuscule redhead reached into a pocket of her gown and removed a handful of blue dust and a glass vial. Holding the dust in one hand, she uncorked the vial with her teeth, allowing a fine mist to seep out into the air. With a sweep of her hand, she scattered the dust into the cloud of mist. She took a few steps back and waited.
It had taken some spirited debate but Atomia had finally convinced the Mouse Man to allow her the use of her minions. She did not have enough “hydroxo-gas” to enlarge them to full human size (nor would Mouse Man have allowed it, the proud deluded fool) but she had accepted the small victory.
As the gas spread, the tiny dust particles within it began to expand. They grew larger and larger until they took on the form of small warriors with a blue metallic sheen. Atomia concentrated her telepathic powers, sending a silent command to her Neutron Robots.
The air around Jesse was suddenly filled with dozens of tiny metal men, each about three inches tall. They swooped about the room with their rocket boots and fired miniature laser pistols at the bewildered heroine.
“Aha! There you are!” she declared. Laser beams stung the skin of her arms and legs as the tin soldiers encircled her. “Ouch! Hey, watch it with those things!”
When she reached out to grab them, the Neutron Robots scattered in all directions. The speedster began darting about the room, trying to catch as many of the robots as possible. Her hands quickly filled with tiny, struggling automatons. She looked around for some sort of box or container to trap them in. But as more emerged from the mist, the trophy room and the surrounding chambers were soon swirling with hundreds of the things.
“That should keep her busy for a while,” Atomia said proudly. She ducked for cover in a knothole of the floor as the giant blonde sped back and forth, futilely chasing the ever-growing swarm of mechanical men.
* * * *
Zatanna wandered through the hangar bay that housed the Javelin jets the League used as transportation. She had lost the little green man’s trail and had seen no sign of the other invaders. Puzzled, she stopped near one of the aircraft to plan her next move.
Far below in the shadow of her black high heels, a tiny green worm inched its way towards her. Mr. Mind activated a jetpack of his own design and lifted off into the air. The pack was on its lowest setting to minimize noise so his ascent up the length of Zatanna’s person was slow. Up, up he floated past the seemingly endless tower of a fishnet-clad leg, past the wide expanse of a meaty thigh, past an enormous building-sized torso draped in a long black tailcoat. His flight took him further, alongside a mountainous bosom that strained against the white button-down shirt that barely contained it. When at last he approached the lovely moon-sized face in the sky above, Zatanna finally turned her head.
She hadn’t been sure what to expect but a caterpillar with a jetpack was pretty low on the list of possibilities. Her shock only lasted a moment though and the lady mage opened her mouth to recite a spell.
“Now!” Mind cried. From the top of the worm’s head, a nearly invisible speck leapt into the air. Dwarfstar grew larger and larger as the arc of his jump carried him directly into Zatanna’s open mouth. He was a good three inches high as he slid along the length of her tongue, four and a half inches when he slipped over the precipice of her throat, and was soon enlarging to six inches and more when his body lodged itself in her gullet. All this had happened in a split second.
Zatanna’s spell died mid-syllable and she gasped for air, choking on the sudden obstruction. As the sorceress flailed and wheezed, grasping at her throat, Mr. Mind casually redirected his flight. The jetpack carried him around the side of Zatanna’s head and stopped before the cave-like entrance to her ear. Landing on its lower edge, the worm wriggled his way directly into the woman’s ear canal. Once safely within, the Venusian mastermind unleashed the full fury of his psychic powers. Hypnotic suggestions filled Zatanna’s brain and within seconds, her desperate flailing ceased. The lady’s eyes glazed over and she became oddly calm. Mr. Mind had taken control.
“I have her,” the worm spoke into his communicator. Deep inside Zatanna’s esophagus, Dwarfstar scrabbled his way back up the slick, fleshy walls, pushing his hands and feet against either side. He shrank back down slightly and slipped through the epiglottis, clambering up onto her tongue. At last, he stood before the wall of her closed teeth and knocked three times on the white enamel.
“Ahem,” he said. “Open sesame.”
Mr. Mind sent out a mental suggestion and the brainwashed magician opened her mouth once more.
“Thanks, you’re a peach,” Dwarfstar called as he jumped back out of Zatanna’s lips. Lowering his body’s density, he floated gracefully down to the floor. Dwarfstar eyed the magician’s enticing curves as he descended, enjoying the tour much more than his wormy companion had.
“Just imagine it,” Zatanna said in a flat tone, though it was Mr. Mind speaking the words through her. “One of the world’s most powerful mystics is now mine to command! Oh, this is going to be such fun!”
To be continued...
Felt like doing some silly fan fiction. This is a sequel to my DC Comics story The Mouse Man’s Revenge. It’s inspired by a discussion from a few years ago on GiantessCity.com about a team of miniature super-villains. (Scud1, if you’re out there, I hope you don’t mind me taking a crack at the idea you suggested.) The characters belong to DC, I get no money from their use. This is all just for fun.
Note for comics fans: This takes place in the pre-Flashpoint DC Universe, rather than the current New 52 reboot. (Because let’s face it, the New 52 kind of sucks.) Let’s assume that the world of this story exists somewhere out in the Multiverse.
Menace of the Mighty Microns!
This story has a lot of characters so I thought some visual aids might help. Check out this thread for pics: