Chapter 1 - Night of the Iron Wolf
"St- Stay back!" The security guard yelled. He took out his gun and aimed it at the two metallic figures that were heading towards him.
The two metallic humanoids were dressed the same. They each wore a silver, round helmet with two narrow, glowing eyes and a round vent at where the mouth would have be. Covering their torsos were breastplates of simple design: two grey, metallic hexagon plates lined horizontally across their chest, with the rest of the torso covered by black metal. The same sleek, black metal covered their arms and legs.
It was the Iron Legion's Iron Soldiers.
"Damn it!" The security guard yelled. He pulled the trigger on his pistol three times in quick succession.
Three small sparks on the breastplate. That's all the damage that the three shots did to the Iron Soldier.
The one that got hit by the bullets just stood there, while the other Iron Soldier rushed towards the security guard. Swiftly, the security guard was punched in the face.
Elsewhere, a lone security guard was doing his patrol in a dark corridor. He was shining his flashlight into a room when he heard the gunshots. Quickly, he turned around to head back to where his partner was.
As soon as he turned around, his flashlight landed on another metallic figure that had somehow snuck up right next to him without making a noise. Same horizontal plates on the chest, but the breastplate's abdomen had straight horizontal lines all over it. The arms and legs were covered with silver metal, instead, and one could see claws at the hands and feet. This one's silver helmet was triangular in shape. There were spikes at the back of the head. The front formed a sort of snout, with two fangs on the two sides of the snout. The whole helmet was modelled after a wolf's head.
The security guard started to yell, but the metallic, humanoid wolf kicked the guard in the abdomen. The security guard was sent flying into wall. Hitting the wall, the security guard slumped down onto the ground and fainted.
The flashlight that the security guard had dropped shone on the metal wolf as he walked over to the unconscious guard.
The wolf dropped the security guard next to the other guard that the Iron Soldiers had taken care of at the front reception.
"You didn't kill him?" The wolf asked. A male voice, distorted by the helmet.
"No, sir! Just like you ordered, we only knocked him out." One of the Iron Soldiers replied. A female voice, also distorted.
"Good. Tie them up."
The two Iron Soldiers took out plastic ties and bounded the guard's ankles and wrists. When they were done, the front door opened.
The three looked in the direction of the front door in surprise. A lone man stood there.
The wolf looked at the man, who looked like he was in his mid-twenties. He had a suit on, but otherwise, there was nothing distinguishable about him.
The wolf snarled, "And just who might you be?"
The man smirked. Then he undid the button on his suit jacket and pulled one side of it back, revealing a strange device that he had on, at where the belt buckle would be. It was a white, rectangular, mechanical looking object with a red orb in the middle.
Proudly, the man declared, "I am the knight who delivers justice!"
He pressed a button on the side of the device on his belt, and yelled, "Suit up!"
Squares exploded from the red orb on the device. Then, as if drawn by some magnetic force, they flew back towards the man and covered him, forming an armoured suit around him.
After the suit had finished forming around him, he stated his name, "Justice Knight!"
Justice Knight was now covered in blue armour, with the exception of two silver plates across his chest. The device with the red orb was still on the front of the his waist. His helmet had a black, rectangular visor across where his eyes would be, two gray antennas sticking out from the middle of the helmet, above the visor, and a gray plate covering the nose and mouth areas. On the left side of his chest was a simple, small emblem that combined the letters J and K so that the K was sticking out of the J.
"So this is the secret exosuit that the government has been working on?" The wolf commented. "Well, since you were kind enough to introduce yourself, let me return the gesture. I am Iron Wolf of the Iron Legion."
Then, Iron Wolf took a fighting stance. To the two Iron Soldiers, he said, "Four, Nine. Secure the what we came here for."
"Yes, sir!" A distorted male voice this time, coming from one of the Iron Soldiers. The two Iron Soldiers started to run towards the deeper parts of the building.
Justice Knight ran towards the soldiers to try to stop them, but the Iron Wolf jumped in between the knight and his targets. "Sorry, but I can't let you do that."
"Of course not..." Justice Knight took a fighting stance as well.
"If even bullets can't hurt us, what makes you think your exosuit will stand a chance?" Iron Wolf boasted.
Justice Knight unclenched his fist, and then he clenched it again, "I guess we'll just have to see."
Running as fast as the fastest humans could run, the Iron Wolf charged at Justice Knight. As soon as he was close enough, the wolf pulled his right claw back, then stabbed at Justice Knight's chest.
Justice Knight twisted the left side of his body back. The wolf's claw missed and went under the knight's left arm, which was already pulled back. Justice Knight threw the left side of his body forward, launching his punch. His punch managed to land on the right side of Iron Wolf's head, causing the wolf to stagger back.
Iron Wolf reached up and felt the spot where he was punched. Then, he laughed an excited laugh. "I haven't felt pain since I became a cyborg!"
Justice Knight clenched his left hand into a fist and flicked it open again. Then, he commented, "Looks like the suit works."
"Good... good!" The Iron Wolf flicked his hands. His claws extended about five centimetres. Then, he charged at Justice Knight. "Now I can go all-out!"
The Iron Wolf charged at Justice Knight. As soon at he was close enough, he swiped at Justice Knight's head with his left hand, claws extended.
Justice Knight ducked and manged to escape the claws. Quickly, Iron Wolf used his right hand to slash at Justice Knight, forcing the knight to jump back.
As soon as Justice Knight landed on his feet after his dodge, he threw a punch with his right fist, aimed at Iron Wolf's head.
Before the punch could connect though, Iron Wolf grabbed the incoming fist by the wrist and pushed it away. Quickly taking advantage of the opening that he made, the wolf uppercut the knight vertically up the chest with his claw.
Sparks of damage shot out of Justice Knight's chest as the claw slashed him. He staggered back, with a hand to his chest. Not giving him time to recover, Iron Wolf charged at him again and slashed at his head.
Justice Knight managed to duck under the claw. Reacting quickly, he jumped up and drove his right knee into Iron Wolf's abdomen, causing the wolf to step back.
Snarling, Iron Wolf swung his right leg at Justice Knight, who jumped back. Before Justice Knight could land, the wolf leaped at him, and managed to slash the knight across the chest with his right claw.
Justice Knight yelped in pain. He landed, but lost his balance and fell onto his back. Iron Wolf jumped up to stomp on him, but he managed to roll out of the way. Instead, Iron Wolf stomp on the floor, strong enough to leave an indent.
Justice Knight stood up quickly and kicked Iron Wolf, knocking the wolf on to the floor. Quickly, he followed up by jumping into the air, pulling back his right fist for a punch.
The metallic wolf stood up just as the blue knight was about to punch him. Instead, Iron Wolf jumped into a backflip, sending his right foot into kick. The kick connected and Justice Knight was slashed in the torso by the claws on the metal foot.
Justice Knight yelled in pain as he was knocked away. He hit the floor and rolled a little before he started struggling up.
Iron Wolf charged at the struggling figure. His target had just managed to stand up when he was within range. He pulled back his right claw during the approach. Then, he slashed Justice Knight across the torso.
The knight yelled out in pain. The impact of the slash threw him into spin. His legs gave up and he fell to the floor.
Iron Wolf stood triumphant over Justice Knight. Placing a hand over where Justice Knight had kicked him, the wolf groaned from the pain. He glanced at the fallen knight. "I look forward to our next fight, knight."
In the distant, police sirens could be heard. Iron Wolf tapped the side of his helmet to turn on his communicator, "Nine! Four! The police are coming. Get what you already have into the van and drive around the front."
Iron Wolf ran outside. He looked to his right and saw a van coming towards him. The two Iron Soldiers were inside.
The van didn't stop as it approached the wolf. Instead, he ran towards it and jumped. Landing on top of it, he ordered, "Go!"
Back inside, Justice Knight struggled to get up, but found that he couldn't. Giving up, he let him body slump back on to the floor and passed out as the sirens approached.
David opened his eyes.
He looked around, trying to figure out where he was. The ceiling of the infirmary at the Justice Knight Headquarters greeted him and he found himself in a bed.
The Captain greeted him, "You're awake?"
The Captain was an older man, probably in his forties, with his hair already gray. He had a serious face. He wore a dress shirt, dress pants, suspenders, and a tie as his outfit, with his badge proudly on his chest. The Captain had a real name, but everyone affectionately called him the Captain; even the other captains did.
David sat up and rubbed his eyes, "Yes, sir."
A younger man, most likely in his mid-twenties, David was currently wearing a hospital gown.
"No need for formalities here, David. How are you feeling?"
David traced his fingers along where Iron Wolf had slashed him across the chest. Finding no trace of the slash, he said, "I... seem to be alright, I think."
"The exosuit managed to protect you well enough so that you don't have any serious injuries. Just some bruises and scratches."
"I'll have to thank Courtney for that."
The two of them went over the events of the night. About David's first time out as Justice Knight. About Iron Wolf and his Iron Soldiers. About how David, as Justice Knight, had lost to Iron Wolf.
"You're lucky you're not dead," said the Captain.
"I don't think he would have killed me anyways. The security guards were bounded, instead of dead, when I got to the scene."
"A general of the Iron Legion with mercy?" The Captain scoffed at the idea. "That's new."
"What did they take anyways?" David asked.
"Another cache of Alberloy."
The two paused for a second at the thought.
"Damn," David swore. "They've been doing this for months now. Stealing caches of the alloy, I mean. That can only mean one thing."
The Captain nodded, "They're building up their army."
Moving onto a related subject, David asked, "Any leads on where Dr. Alber could be?"
"A few. The most probable is that the Iron Legion kidnapped him. After his discovery of Alberloy, he went on to use his new alloy to help with the research of a new generation of prosthetic limbs. In fact, before his disappearance, his research had pretty much evolved into cybernetics."
"Right..., and from what we know, the Iron Soldiers are most likely cyborgs, meaning that Dr. Alber is helping them, whether he wants to or not."
"And if we could find him, he could help us pinpoint any weaknesses the Iron Legion might have," the Captain concluded.
"The Network is still monitoring all the feeds from the city?"
David got out of the bed, "I should get going."
The Captain stood up. "You sure you're alright? The doctor gave you the all-clear, but I understand if you want to rest a while longer."
"No, there's work to be done."
The Captain nodded, "Alright, I'll be in my office if you need me."
David nodded back, and the Captain departed.
David started putting on his outfit. Dress pants, dress shirt with the top button unbuttoned, a tie to hid the unbuttoned button, and a sports jacket. Finally, he clipped the same badge that the Captain had on to his chest as well. On the badge were the words 'Justice Knight Unit'.
David walked into the Science Lab of the Justice Knight Headquarters. A lone woman wearing a lab coat sat in front of a computer at the counter to the side. On the computer, were the blueprints for the Justice Knight exosuit.
David walked up to the woman and greeted her, "Hi Courtney."
Courtney sighed. She turned around and greeted David with a tired, "David."
"Is it that bad?" David asked, noting Courtney's fatigue.
"Take a look for yourself." Courtney got off her chair and walked over to the work bench in the middle of the room, where the device that was on David's belt laid. She pressed the button on the side of the device and said, "Maintenance."
Squares flew out of the red orb and gently formed the exosuit on the table. The exosuit had scratches all over it; most notable were the five huge gashes in the torso where Iron Wolf had slashed Justice Knight to finish the fight.
"As you can see, the Knight-Former works just fine. However, the exosuit has be damaged quite a bit. Luckily, most of the damage was only to the external armour. I should be able to fix it in a few hours."
"Thank you," said David.
"No, thank you. Years of research into this exosuit, finally getting proper funding after this cyborg mess started, months of training you, and we finally have our first field test. Now I can adjust the suit a bit to fit you more and to make it more formidable."
"That's good to hear," David said. "But I think I'm going to need a weapon though. An actual weapon."
"I'm currently working on a pistol and some ammo that will be able to finally hurt the cyborgs, but it won't be ready until a week or so later, at least."
"I guess in the meantime, I'll just have to rely on your masterpiece then," David offered Courtney a smile along with the compliment.
"It's not a masterpiece yet," Courtney shrugged off the compliment, "The Justice Knight exosuit still needs a lot more work."
Courtney turned to look at David, "Is there anything else that you need?"
"Nope. I'm good. Thank you, Courtney. Please remember to take a break."
"I'll take one when I'm done." Courtney walked back to her computer and started looking over her blueprints again.
David sighed. Courtney loved her work - maybe a bit too much. David would have to check back in later to make sure that she wouldn't be working all night again, but, for now, he had to pay a visit to the Network.
As David was walking out the door, he waved goodbye, "I'll see you later, Courtney."
"Yes, yes," was Courtney's quick and distracted response.
David walked into the busy section of the Justice Knight Headquarters that belonged to the Network.
It was a huge room, with computers everywhere. There were five people in the room, going back and forth between the computers and each other. Handing each other documents, talking to each other, or looking at the computer screens together.
The youngest of the people there, a girl with pink-rimmed glasses caught sight of David as he walked into the room. "David! You're alright!"
Everyone stopped to take a look at David, most of them giving him a smile.
The girl with the pink-rimmed glasses rushed over to David and drew him into a tight hug as the others got back to what they were doing.
"Too tight! Sasha, too tight!" David said.
"Oh! Sorry..." Sasha loosened the hug a bit. "It's just that we were watching you fight over the security feed from the building, and it looked like you were hurt really badly!"
"Don't worry, I'm alright. The exosuit took most of the damage."
Sasha pulled back and gave David a smile, "I'm so glad that you're okay!"
"Thanks, Sasha," David said. "So, how's the monitoring going? Anything new?"
"Nope, we're still monitoring the security feeds from all the probable targets of the Iron Legion. So far, nothing new after Iron Wolf's break in from last night."
"Speaking of last night, I noticed that the security guards were bounded, instead of dead."
"Yeah, that was strange. I mean, I am happy that the security guards didn't die, but, usually, the Iron Legion doesn't show any restraint in that regard. Usually, they just kill whoever gets in their way."
"Hm...," David pondered for a few moments. Not getting anywhere, he decided to let the Network continue their work. "Thanks, Sasha. Let me know if anything comes up."
"Of course!" Sasha waved goodbye as David headed out, "Bye, David!"
David sat down at his desk. He picked up one of the pictures on his desk.
In the picture were two smiling cops, one of them a younger David, and the other one was his partner. David looked sorrowfully at the face of his partner, and he said to it, "I went out as Justice Knight for the first time last night, Alan. But... I lost."
David put the picture back onto the desk and he started flashing back.
Half a year ago, David and his partner, Alan, were in their patrol car. Suddenly, a voice came over the radio, "There is a possible break in happening at the Williams Science Lab at 92 Owen Street! Witnesses have reported that it could be the same metallic creature that was at the break in at the other science lab a few days ago!"
Alan reached down and reported over the radio, "This is patrol car 43, we're heading there right now! We'll be there in five minutes!"
"Roger that. Reinforcements are on the way, be careful!"
At the Williams Science Lab, the metallic figure was outside, with a suitcase in its hands. It turned to face the security guard, intimidating the guard with its round head, its narrow glowing eyes, and its round vent for a mouth. It was an Iron Soldier.
The security guard, trembling backwards, fired his gun at the Iron Soldier.
The bullets bounced off the metallic creature harmlessly as it headed towards the security guard.
In the distance, a police car sped towards the two with the sirens blazing.
"There it is!" Alan shouted, pointing at the Iron Soldier. "Ram it!"
"What?!" David shouted back.
"You saw what happened! The bullets didn't even make it flinch!"
"Brace yourself, then!" David stepped onto the accelerator as hard as he could.
The Iron Soldier turned to look in the direction of the police car. It didn't move. Maybe it was expecting the car to stop, but when it did decided to jump out of the way of the car, it was too late. David drove the car into the Iron Soldier.
The creature hit the front of the car, then the windshield, and then it flew off and hit the ground as David hit the brakes hard.
The two policemen got out of the car, groggy from the crash. There was a large dent on the front of the car.
"You think we got him?" Alan asked as they both drew their guns from their holsters.
The Iron Soldier stood up slowly.
"I... don't think so," David replied.
Angered, the Iron Soldier ran towards David.
Though still dazed, David manged to jump to the side and land on the ground to avoid the metal creature charging at him.
The Iron Soldier roared as it turned around to face David. It lunged at David.
Unable to get up in time, David braced for death.
However, before the Iron Soldier could kill David, Alan tackled the Iron Soldier. As Alan hit the Iron Soldier, it looked like they would both fall to the ground. However, the Iron Soldier managed to keep its balance, and kept itself from toppling over.
"Get the gasoline!" Alan yelled at David.
David nodded and ran to the trunk of the police car. Quickly, he unlocked it and took out the can of spare gasoline.
David turned to see that the Iron Soldier had thrown Alan against a wall. There was blood on the wall where Alan had hit it, and the blood followed him as he slid down into a slump on the ground.
"Alan!" David ran towards the Iron Soldier with gasoline can. Quickly, he poured gasoline all over the steel monster.
The Iron Soldier punched David in the abdomen, hitting David with enough force for David to fly through the air and land on the hood of the car.
The Iron Soldier began to walk menacingly towards David, but David was not out yet. He took out his gun and aimed it at the enemy.
For a second, the Iron Soldier hesitated. Then, it resumed its walk.
"Don't laugh me off yet, monster." David fired.
The bullet hit the armour of the Iron Soldier. Sparks flew out as the two connected. Sparks which ignited the gasoline that David had poured onto the steel humanoid. Fire started to consume the Iron Soldier, who began to wreathe in a panic. It stopped, dropped, and rolled on the floor, but there was gasoline all over the pavement as well.
The Iron Soldier gave up, and rolled onto its four limbs. It roared and ran towards David, as if trying to take David down with it as well. However, before it was able to get far, it exploded.
David breathed quickly and painfully as he watched the Iron Soldier explode. Satisfied that he had taken care of the enemy, he blacked out.
David woke up. He looked around and saw that he was in a hospital.
An older man, probably in his forties, with gray hair and a serious face greeted him. He wore a dress shirt, dress pants, suspenders, and a tie as his outfit, with his police badge proudly on his chest. "Hello David, I am Captain-"
"Where's Alan?" David asked, in a dazed panic.
The Captain paused. Then, he said, "I'm sorry, but Sergeant Alan Winters was a brave man. He died from his injuries fighting that metal monster."
David's eyes went wide. Then they filled with sorrow and he turned away from the Captain.
"Listen, I am heading a new unit that's being put together to fight this Iron Legion - that's what these metal monsters are calling their group - and I would like you to be part of it." The Captain took out a card and placed it on the bedside table. "Give me a call if you're interested."
David offered no response.
The Captain stood up. "I am sorry about Sergeant Winters."
The Captain left the room.
After a long while - after David was finally able to sort his thoughts about their fight with the Iron Soldier and about Alan's death - David picked up the card. It read 'Justice Knight Unit'.
Suddenly, David's ringing phone snapped him out of his flashback.
David picked up his phone, "Hi, David here."
Sasha's voice came through the receiver, "David! Iron Wolf is attacking another science lab right now!"
David stood up, "Okay, I'll go pick up the Knight-Former from Courtney, and then I'll head straight there! Keep me updated on the situation!"
Iron Wolf jumped onto the van, and shouted to the Iron Soldier who was driving, "Go!"
As the van sped along the road, a police car was speeding towards them from the opposite direction with its sirens blaring.
In the police car, David saw the van and the metallic wolf on the top of it. He pressed the brake hard and swung the car around so that it blocked both sides of the road, with the passenger side facing the van.
"Ram it!" Iron Wolf ordered, as he dug his claws into the van's top so that he wouldn't be thrown off when the van hit the police car.
In the police car, David saw that the van was speeding up towards him. "Oh, you have got to be kidding me."
"Suit up!" David yelled, as he pressed the button on the Knight-Former on his belt and opened the car door to jump out.
The van rammed into the police car.
Both vehicles slid a little before the they stopped. Iron Wolf shook his head to get rid of the dazed feeling from the van's impact with the car. He pulled his claws out of the van and stood up to take a look at the situation.
Suddenly, Justice Knight jumped on to the police car. Then, he jumped again toward Iron Wolf and landed a kick on the wolf's chest.
Iron Wolf fell onto the ground and Justice Knight landed on the roof of the van. Courtney had done a good job fixing most of the damage to the Justice Knight exosuit in the few hours that she had, but one could still see little scratches on the suit here and there.
Still, David hoped, it should be enough to hold off the Iron Wolf.
Justice Knight jumped off the roof of the van to land behind one of the Iron Soldiers that was getting out of the car. Swiftly, Justice Knight kicked the Iron Soldier into the van door.
Justice Knight opened the side door of the van, and saw the caches of Alberloy. Crates and crates of them. There was no way that he could just run out of there with all of them. So much for that plan.
Iron Wolf roared and charged at the armoured knight. He pulled his right claw back and swiped at Justice Knight.
Justice Knight managed to duck underneath Iron Wolf's slash in the nick of time. From his crouch, he jumped up and drove his knee into Iron Wolf's chin.
Iron Wolf staggered back as one of the Iron Soldiers jumped and kicked Justice Knight's back, causing the azure knight to hit the ground. Reacting quickly, Justice Knight rolled onto his back, and pulled his knees towards his chin, and then quickly kicked out his feet into the Iron Soldier's abdomen.
Justice Knight got up as the Iron Soldier that he kicked staggered back. Another Iron Soldier charged at Justice Knight with her fist pulled back. However, before she could punch the blue figure, Justice Knight managed to punch her in the face, sending her tumbling back into the other Iron Soldier.
In the distance, sirens could be heard as the Iron Soldiers were getting up.
Iron Wolf snarled, then, he barked his orders, "Retreat!"
The female Iron Soldier spoke, "But, sir, we can just kill-"
"No killing, Nine!"
Nine paused for a moment, before answering, "Yes, sir. We'll retreat."
"Hey, don't I get a say in this?" Justice Knight asked.
Suddenly, the male Iron Solider threw a canister at Justice Knight's face. It exploded right before it hit his helmet and released a huge cloud of smoke.
"Good job, Four!" Iron Wolf's voice shouted through the smoke. Then, directed at Justice Knight, Iron Wolf said, "Not bad, Knight. Until next time!"
Justice Knight ran out of the smoke and looked around. But it was too late, the three cyborgs were gone.
As the smoke dispersed, the other policemen arrived. One of them walked up to Justice Knight and asked nervously, "A-are you alright, sir?"
"Yeah, I'm alright," Justice Knight replied. Then, to the policewoman at the van, he asked, "How's the Alberloy?"
"There's still crates in the van, but we'll have to do a count to see if they got away with any."
Justice Knight pressed a button on his Knight-Former, and the exosuit dispersed into tiny squares, which were then pulled back into the red orb on his Knight-Former.
David walked up to the van and took a look.
"Damn," David gently hit the side of the van in frustration. "They took a crate."
"Here you go, Courtney," David said as he placed the Knight-Former on the workbench.
"How did it go?" asked Courtney.
"They managed to get away with a crate of Alberloy."
"Right," Courtney said, "but how was the exosuit?"
"... Oh," David replied. "Well, not much damage this time. The little adjustments that you made made the exosuit feel a lot smoother to me, so thank you for that."
"I will repair the damage, and make more adjustments for you."
"Thank you, Courtney."
David left the lab and headed in to the Captain's office. On his desk were two glasses of whiskey.
"Here, David." The Captain handed a glass to David.
"Thank you, Captain, but..."
"I know they got away with a crate of Alberloy, but you managed to hold them back, and we haven't had good news like this for a while. So here, to being able to beat the Iron Legion, one day." The Captain held up his glass.
David looked at his drink and decided that the Captain was right, "Yeah, to being able to beat the Iron Legion."
David raised his glass as well, and the two clinked their drinks together.
Iron Wolf kneeled before the figure in the shadows, who sitting on a throne. All that could be seen was the lower half of a metal body, with feet that ended in sharp, deadly claws, and two glowing, narrow, angry eyes. Iron Wolf spoke, "I am sorry, all I could get was one crate."
A grand, booming voice came out of the figure in the shadows. It was a commanding voice. A voice that was intimidating to all who heard it. "I am disappointed. But we have enough for our plans for now."
Iron Wolf exhaled in relief, "That's good to hear, sir."
"Tell the Iron Bull to come see me," the voice said. "Then go get some rest, my son."
"Yes, sir," Iron Wolf stood up and walked out of the room.
A claw came out of the shadows and clenched itself into an angry fist. Angrily, the voice said, "Justice Knight... You will be eliminated."