Well, that was unsatisfying. Without the threat of severe health risks, I’m just sucking on a flaming paper tube stuffed with bits of dead plant. I guess it’s true what they say about mortals having a “death wish.” I might have enjoyed it if there was some possibility it would have killed me.
But speaking of fire, Tommy and Shockwave returned to their country estate only to discover it was burning. Or at least it had been. Charred wreckage and smoldering beams were all that remained of the sizable mansion Shockwave had built, and the robot tore the door off the car as he scrambled to get out, then fell to his cybernetic knees in front of what was his home. Tommy, who usually had no shortage of ill-pronounced words, could come up with none to console his friend. They remained there for long moments, staring as the smoke spiraled into the sky. But Tommy was beginning to sense something. Or at least realize he wasn’t sensing something.
“Shockwave…where is the sound? I don’t hear things.” Wiseau’s face twisted in confusion as even the sound of his own voice came out muted and tinny. “What is this that is happening?”
Shockwave was out of his daze in less than a heartbeat and transformed his non-gun-arm…into a gun-arm. It was something he rarely did, something he reserved for only the most dire of threats. Wiseau’s blood ran cold at the sight, and he was already in motion before Shockwave bellowed “Take cover!” Oddly enough, the force of Shockwave’s exclamation was enough to literally cause a shockwave, sending Tommy tumbling over his car, but the actual sound barely registered as a whisper. Completely mystified, Tommy still scrambled into a crouch and drew his service revolver. Peering over the hood of his car, he finally glimpsed the source of the danger.
And let me just give you some idea of what they were facing…the sheer magnitude of it. As you might imagine, there’s not a whole lot that can startle an immortal. We’ve been all of there and done all of that. But I’m going to let you in on a little secret, and it’s probably going to fuck that brain of yours over something fierce: There are a few things…that give even an immortal pause. And one of those things is a Mime Wolf.
A pack of five Mime Wolves was bearing down on Shockwave at that moment. And as they raced closer, the silence grew more and more deafening. Tommy’s mind tried to wrap itself around what he was experiencing and couldn’t. It was as though the very concept of sound had been sucked from the earth and replaced with a nothingness so vast it was nearly tangible. Thinking became nearly impossible, and it was all Wiseau could do to stay conscious, let alone try and help his partner. Instead, all he could do was watch in very mute horror as the Mime Wolves each lifted a paw above their shoulders and pretended to fire imaginary rocket launchers. Shockwave returned fire far too late, and was blasted back the length of an entire football field. His metallic purple body tumbled like an empty aluminum can for another 20 or so yards until he smashed through the smoking remnants of his barn.
The Mime Wolves were apparently content to toy with their prey, and merely rope-walked their way over to the barn, then invisible-walled-in Shockwave as they circled him. It was a long while before Shockwave shoved himself to his feet, his chestplate smashed open and flickering, the edges scorched. The Decepticon ran diagnostic after diagnostic, and the only positive thing he could have reported was that he still functioned. Firing his weapons would drain the last of his energon reserves and send him into stasis lock. It was a moot point, anyway. He knew a single blast from even his powerful armaments would do nothing against the Mime Wolves. How he knew this is something I still can’t fathom. I haven’t seen a Mime Wolf in person to this day, and I’d only heard of them about a million or so years ago. And he didn’t just know OF them. He knew about the only way to BEAT them.
Now you see why I’m telling you this. It’s an even better puzzle than the whole Wiseau-Shockwave V. Wiseau-Shockwave case.
The problem was — like Daffy Duck drinking nitroglycerin — he could only do it once. And it would cost him dearly. He hesitated for a nano-second, but saw no other alternatives. He got into position, then triggered the device.
Now, imagine if the sounds of “nails on a chalkboard” and “styrofoam egg cartons rubbing together” had a baby-sound, and that offspring was amped up to 194dB. That was the fail-safe Shockwave had built into his estate in the event of a Mime Wolf attack. Seriously. Not even Batman is that prepared.
The sound was highly focused into a very tight radius. Wiseau, more than a hundred yards away, heard nothing. Shockwave, in the “eye of the storm” and with his aural receptors deactivated, heard nothing. The Mime Wolves, on the other hand, heard something for the first time in their entire lives. As a result, they exploded. Sound rushed back into a world now even more devastated. The force required for Shockwave’s device had vaporized what was left of the barn and about three feet of the turf underneath it, revealing a subterranean laboratory.
Tommy Wiseau, able to hear and think and act again, staggered over to Ground Zero, where he found Shockwave on one knee on the lab’s floor, frantically trying to self-repair something in his chestplate. “Oh hi, Shockwave! You okay down there?” Tommy yelled just before he tried to climb down. It didn’t even occur to him that he didn’t know this lab existed until he got to the floor and looked around. Lining every wall were empty chambers. Human-sized chambers hooked to cables all leading to a massive computer display. And on that computer display was something that took Tommy a few moments to fully comprehend, but when he did, his blood ran cold for the second time.
“Thomas…” Shockwave said warningly as Wiseau turned to face him. The robot was standing again, apparently as hale as he could be with a massive rupture in his torso. “Don’t –”
“YOU WERE CLONING ME?! YOU WERE CLONING ME?! I DON’T UNDERSTAND! WHY HAVE YOU DONE THIS?! YOU ARE TEARING ME APA–”
Shockwave muttered, “Yes, I know,” then raised his arm-gun…and fired.