Monday, 31 December 1990

Anglo-Force: Enter Gandalf's Guardians Chapter 1

Anglo-Force headquarters, two miles outside London. A meeting of the members of Anglo-Force was taking place, a meeting that would have serious repercussions on the very future of the organization. Present were the Captain, James Watt, acting leader in the absence of Mr. X, Chameleon, Star Man, White Knight and Woodwose. This meeting was not a pleasant one.
    “I don’t give a damn what any of you say.” shouted Watt. “If it wasn’t for Magus, Anglo-Force would still be operating out of some sort of sewer! Without Magus, Anglo-Force is nothing!”
    “If it wasn’t for Magus, our leader, Mr. X, would be here with us today, instead of some rehab clinic in Essex.” said Chameleon. “We don’t need that old bastard. We can survive on our own!”
    “It may have escaped your notice, Mr. Anderson, but we are now two members under our original government agreement.” said Watt.
    “We wouldn’t be in this trouble if it wasn’t for Magus and your Russian floozy!” snapped Chameleon.
    Watt stormed over to Chameleon, and grabbed him by his collar.
    “For that I ought to kill you! Without Magus, half of our funding is gone, and without me, so is your leader. As of now, I resign!”
    Watt stormed out of the room, neglecting to open the door.
    “Well.” said Chameleon. “That’s another of Magus’ friends gone.”
    “You are lucky that we are still here, Lewis.” said White Knight. “I suggest we hold our leadership election soon, before our money from Magus and the government runs out!”
    “No election is needed.” said Chameleon. “If you look at our charter, it shows that I am third in command. Until Mr. X returns, I am taking command!”

    The leader of the Black Squadron, Mother Nature, and her new second in command, the Grim Reaper, walked through the cold, dark, damp caves of northern Wales. Ever since the Saruman Wars, the Black Squadron had been short of “staff”. Dr. Theophilus and Celsius were now being held in the new Dentonville maximum security prison, recently constructed by Muir Industries. As the two stepped through the puddles, Mother Nature began to look sceptical.
    “I’m not sure about this.” she said. “You said you had found us help, but you didn’t say who. I don’t want any weirdo in my organization.”
    “Those who do not trust the Reaper end up meeting me in my own environment, very soon. We are here.”
    The two of them stopped at a cave wall.
    “There is nothing her!” screeched Mother Nature.
    “Behold.”
    The wall started to shimmer, and then, it vanished, revealing another, long tunnel, but this one had some light.
    “We are almost there.” said the Reaper. “Our associates are this way.”
    The Reaper led Mother Nature down the tunnel. Soon, they were in another chamber, completely lighted by candles. A strange smell filled the room. In the centre of the room sat a large, heavily muscled man, with a skull painted on his face. He stood, gazing into the air, laughing. In one corner of the chamber, stood another well built man. This man was also gazing into the air, but this one seemed to be talking to an invisible man.
    “I present to you our new members, Shango and Dimento.”
    The man in the corner spoke.
    “The spirits inform me that you are allies of darkness.”
    Mother Nature turned to the Reaper.
    “It seems that you have brought me a couple of weirdos.”
    “They are powerful allies. They will serve you well.”
    “I get the feeling that they will serve me to the police. For now, they will come with us. Whether or not they stay with us depends on their abilities. If they fail us, then you will pay dearly.”

    The story of Watt’s resignation leaked to the press. The tabloids were having a field day.
    “Captain resigns over Red Sun affair; Magus vanishes.”
    This was just the thing that the objectors in the House of Commons wanted.

    Another day passed. Watt was very angry. HE was flying at super-speed over London, trying to burn off some of his anger. As he neared full speed, he hit what seemed to be an invisible barrier. Watt had never encountered anything like this before. Quickly, he fell to the ground. He landed in an old alley. He soon got to his feet, and dusted himself off.
    “My apologies, Captain, but that was the only way I could attract your attention.”
    Watt spun round, to see an old man dressed in robes standing behind him. He instantly recognised him.
    “Gandalf! What are you doing here?”
    “It is not often that I visit Earth, I only visit on grave occasions.”
    “Magus?”
    “Magus’ disappearance and the disruption within the ranks of Anglo-Force troubles the Istari greatly. It had caused a shift in the balance of power. Even as I speak, evil forces conspire against the forces of good. What is about to happen could disrupt the entire fabric of space and time.”
    “You’re not talking to Magus here, Gandalf. Speak plainly.”
    “I was, my dear Captain. Your resignation has caused an imbalance. It was written that this would happen. That is why we of the Istari have approached you, Captain. We need your help.”
    “I’m off giving anyone help at the moment.”
    “But you must, because with your help, we can help redress the balance of power. The Istari is about to gather a force, from all over time, to redress the balance. They are a group of powerful warriors, but they lack leadership. You have shown your leadership qualities in the past, now, we ask you to show them again.”
    “You want me to command a bunch of kids?”
    Gandalf raised his hand. They were no longer in central London, but in what seemed to be a prehistoric land. Gandalf pointed to the sky, where a man was flying overhead.
    “From the year one million, B.C., I present Mightor, the powerful tribal warrior. The most powerful man of his time.”
    The scene changed again, this time to one of ancient Egypt.
    “I present Shazzan, the mighty magical genie. His power is without compare in this time period.”
    The scene changed again. Watt recognised it as 1960’s Washington. They saw another man fly overhead, but this one had wings.
    “I present Birdman, upholder of the law, protector of the innocent.”
    “Don’t give me that.” said Watt. “I remember reading that Birdman vanished in the late…”
    “He did. He journey from the sixties to your time period, the nineties.”
    The scene changed again. This time, they floated in space. A space craft flew past them. Gandalf pointed to the cockpit.
    “From the 22nd century, Space Ghost. A powerful warrior, whose technology will help you.”
    The scene changed again. This time they were on an alien planet.
    “The 27th century. Here we find the final pieces of our puzzle. Vapour Man, Meteor Man and Gravity Girl, collectively known as the Galaxy Trio.”
    The scene changed for a final time. They were now in what seemed to be a room in a castle. Gandalf and Watt stood in the middle of the room. On one side of the room, on tables, lay Mightor, Shazzan, Birdman and Space Ghost. On the other side lay the Galaxy Trio. Gandalf held his hands high. A slight flow appeared around the heads of each of those on the table.
    “It is complete. Not only are they well versed in the ways of their own time, but they are now well versed in the ways of your time. The decision is now yours, Captain.”
    “Do I have in choice in the matter?”
    “You are indeed the final piece of the puzzle, Captain. These are  not the only ones the Istari can call on. There are many more, but at the moment, you are the only one we can call from this time period, Your are needed, Captain Watt, to lead the Time Guardians!”

    The remaining members of the Black Squadron, Mother Nature, Trull, Vampira and the Grim Reaper sat in their headquarters, an old farm in the Surrey countryside. As they sat, a strange smell drifted into the old farm house from the barn outside. Mother Nature was not a happy woman.
    “Perhaps it would have been better to help Theophilus and Celsius escape from prison.” said Vampira.
    “I’m beginning to agree with you.” said Mother Nature. “Those two weirdos have turned this place into a devil worship place!”
    “They are powerful warriors.” said the Reaper. “They will aid you in your quest to eliminate Anglo-Force.”
    “Speaking of Anglo-Force.” said Vampira. “Look at this.”
    Vampira handed Mother Nature the current newspaper, with the front page story about Watt’s resignation.
    “They now number only four.” said Vampira. “They are now easy pickings.”
    “Summon your weirdo friends, Reaper.” ordered Mother Nature. “We must make our plans.”

    An unofficial visitor was being received at the Anglo-Force mansion. Sir Angus Campbell-Bannerman had read the many newspaper reports about Watt’s resignation. He was very concerned.
    “This is not good at all. Under your original charter, you said you would be at least seven strong. Now, with Mr. X injured, and Watt’s resignation, coming only a few months after the Red Sun incident, this is all very worrying.”
    White Knight, now in his guise of Arthur Pendragon, and acting as solicitor to Anglo-Force, replied.
    “Believe me, minister, it is also worrying for my clients. We have tried to contact some of our old members, but Axe Kid and Lightning Kid are preparing for their final exams, and Jet hasn’t been seen for weeks.”
    “This is still no good. The Commons Executive Committee on Law and Order is considering calling Anglo-Force’s leader for questioning. By the way, who is their leader now?”
    “Chameleon. The charter elected him as third in command.”
    “That’s another thing the P.M. is worried about. He is an unknown quantity as leader.”
    Sir Angus got up to leave.
    “There are many things that have to be taken into account. The government can not afford to fund the project on it’s own, and with this being an election year, well, you know what I mean.”
    “I will try my best, but I can’t guarantee anything.”