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Armored Underworld (fanfiction) pt 22 of 41

More fanfiction! Tony Stark, a.k.a. Iron Man, follows a lead in Las Vegas that brings him up against the terrorists after his robot tech.

Want to read this from the beginning? CLICK HERE!

Iron Man mask

Gambling wasn’t Stark’s thing — unless it came to gambling on which woman he could convince to join him for a drink. With his charm and money, that wasn’t gambling. More like, simply, asking.

Stark hoped he could simply ask Vanko up to the suite for some drinks, which would turn into a question and answer session.

Stark wasn’t good at that either, but if Batman didn’t hurry up…

Luckily, Vanko wasn’t very good at gambling either. He was about to order another round of chips when Stark hustled in. He covered the purchase, much to Vanko’s chagrin.

“Anthony Stark!” Vanko said in disgust. “I do not need nor want your filthy money!”

Stark moved to Vanko’s side. He was watchful of the two Russian bruisers in suits who moved a bit closer. Vanko waved them back with a casual shake of his head.

Stark wondered if these were Vanko’s boys or SHIELD replacements watching him.

“My filthy money was good for you until I caught you getting Roxxon’s filthy money,” Stark said. Vanko ignored the comment.

A hostess brought more chips.

“This isn’t your style, Vanko!” Stark continued. “The gambling, I mean. You need to go enjoy the high life you’ve stumbled into.”

Vanko threw some chips on the table and waited for the dealer to return his effort with some cards. “I have enjoyed the high life for several days now, Stark. I do not need your help.”

The dealer issued five cards to Vanko. He took them, gently lifting the edges to read the cards. Stark looked over his shoulder.

“My poker skills are limited but, with that hand, you’re gonna need help,” Stark said.

Vanko put his cards down and looked at the table. “I told my men to stand down, Stark. Do not make me have you removed.”

Stark watched as Vanko played out his hand.

Predictably, he lost.

While the dealer prepared the next hand, Stark said, “Well if you wanna lose all my money too, be my guest. I’m sure there’s some genius-level IQ in town who can help me figure out the positronic matrix that keeps screwing up my new drones.”

Stark turned from the table, but Vanko grabbed his arm.

“Positronics are fiction,” Vanko said.

“They were before SHIELD dumped a few billion dollars into Stark Industries specifically to make that fiction a reality.”

Vanko had that look of curiosity. Stark pressed the advantage. “I just happen to have some schematics in my suite next to the vodka.”

Stark was lying when he was talking about the positronic stuff. He brought with him some schematics that were similar in design. They’d be enough to fool Vanko. It appeased him while Stark worked on some more vodka.

The two conversed a bit about relevant tech breakthroughs, most of them done at Stark but also a few Vanko had supposedly read about elsewhere.

Stark secretly took this to mean projects people had hired Vanko to reverse engineer.

With the pleasantries done and Vanko in good spirits, Stark thought it time to get to the good stuff. He couldn’t wait around for Batman.

Stark pulled up another schematic on his tablet, one he’d drafted for the armored glove he’d encountered at the Gotham Convention Center. He showed it to Vanko.

Vanko’s chipper mood went dark. “Where did you get this?” he asked.

Stark sat on the sofa with his martini. “Gotham City of all places,” he replied.

Vanko’s mood went further south.

“I figured it was something you could figure out,” Stark said, “as it’s got your tech creation fingerprints all over it.”

Vanko set the tablet down on the table between them. He looked past Stark and out the window wall with its view of Vegas at night. “It is not something you should involve yourself with, Stark.”

“Well, see, that’s the problem. I am involved. Someone tried to shoot me with it.”

Vanko looked to Stark.

“I don’t care about you, Vanko. You’re just a hired gun. I want whoever’s pulling the trigger.”

Vanko hesitated. He took a sip of his drink before answering. “A former KGB associate asked me to work on a project. Curiously, she paid me far more than even an ex-KGB should be able to afford.”

Stark sat up. “She?” Stark asked.

“Yes. I believe you know her as —”

The windows behind Stark and across from Vanko exploded inward, showering the two men in glass. Luckily, the wounds were largely cosmetic, save for Stark’s martini.

Next, Stark heard two new explosions behind him, these much smaller than the windows. He recognized the sound as smoke grenades. A black cloud flooded the room, obscuring his vision and confirming his suspicion.

Stark knew the next sound he’d probably hear were machine guns of some kind, held by ex-KGB forces.

Were they here to capture him and Vanko?

Or worse?

Stark was starting to regret having Vanko’s bodyguards stay outside. Luckily, he had another Iron Man suit in the bedroom — if he could make it there.

Staying low, Stark crawled on the floor toward the bedroom. He could barely see, causing him to run into some furniture and, unfortunately giving away his position.

That was moot anyway, as whoever was going to come in after the smoke obviously had the tech to clear their vision.

He heard four sets of boots land on the hardwood floor by the blown-out windows.

Stark pressed ahead. He heard two sets of boots move into the room. Vanko yelled something in Russian. Someone attacked him.

The machine-gun fire concerned Stark. Bullets peppering the ground around him. Mandalay’d add it to his already hefty tab.

A few more crouched steps and Stark made it unscathed to the bedroom. The smoke hadn’t reached here. He threw open the closet where his armor lay in wait. It’d take a few seconds to let it suit up around him.

Stark heard the boots fast approaching.

To be continued…


While writing this fanfiction, I used Green Ronin’s Mutants and Masterminds, 3rd Edition RPG, to leave some things to chance. Check it out!

Like this fanfiction? Check out Mark’s original “Shadowdance” saga books!

Copyright Info

DC Adventures, Copyright 2011, Green Ronin Publishing; Author Steve Kenson. Now it’s Mutants and Masterminds, 3rd Edition

Advanced Player’s Manual, Copyright 2005, Green Ronin Publishing: Author Skip Williams.

The characters Iron Man, Tony Stark, Pepper Potts, Vanko, Black Widow and Nick Fury are Copyright Marvel Comics

The characters Batman/ Bruce Wayne, Batgirl/ Barbara Gordon, Black Mask, the Penguin/ Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot, Renee Montoya, Commissioner Gordon, Alfred Pennyworth, Robin/ Dick Grayson, KGBeast and Bane are Copyright DC Comics

The character Juri Han is Copyright Capcom

None of the characters belong to me as this is fanfiction, done for fun, and as a creative exercise.

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