DCM Knights
Detective Comics

The Return of the Sinister Six
Part Six: Triumph
by Black Condor

The Super Six
The Shadow
Iron Man
Martian Manhunter
The Sinister Six
Dr. Octopus
Dr. Phosphorous

Six heroes faced a city full of insane innocents.

"There's no way we can stop them!" Shadow said glumly. "Not without injuring these people!"

The crowd lurched forward toward the heroes. Iron Man used his suit to generate a force field around himself and Spider-Man.

Batman pulled Shadow aside and whispered something into the younger crimefighter's ear. Batman fired a grappling hook at a nearby building and soared up above the crowd. The Shadow followed him, nimbly crossing over to near where the Sinister Six were standing.

The crowd began beating against the force field with anything that they could use.

J'Onn looked at the crowd. He had not seen anything this crazy since that time, years ago, on Mars, when he had to help quell the Valles Marineris food riots. He remembered what one of the older members of the Martian Super Police had done - it was a feat that J'Onzz did not know whether or not he could reproduce.

As he saw Spider-Man emerge from the force field and desperately try to hold the crowd back with his webs, J'Onn knew that it was at least worth a try.

"I have to go away for a moment, friends," J'Onn said as he soared up over them. He had to get to a quiet place to concentrate - he was going to use his powers as never before. He sent an urgent mental suggestion to the Flash.

"Use your super-speed to scour the city. Find the source of the insanity - it's probably gaseous fumes that the Joker has generated."

"But what about the other guys?" Flash responded.

"If you do not find the gas, my efforts will be in vain," J'Onn urged.

Flash zipped away, leaving Iron Man and Spider-Man to face the angry crowd.

"What gives?" Spider-Man said. "It's you and me against Boston, Iron Man!"

Lois Lane and Ben Urich stood in the shadow of one of Boston's skyscrapers, watching the lunatics' attack. They had taken the precaution of wearing gas masks to protect against the fumes that had made everyone in Boston insane.

"These people can't stop themselves," Ben said.

"I almost don't want to take pictures of this," Lois replied. "Those heroes don't stand a chance."

But she did keep taking pictures - the on-the-scene reporting would make for one of the best selling issues of the Daily Planet ever.

The Sinister Six watched as the crowd surged toward the heroes. They were so busy reveling in the sight of the troubled heroes that they did not notice the Batman and the Shadow alight on their platform.

Silently, the Batman and the Shadow began their coordinated attack.

The Shadow crept up upon the Catman, which was an incredible feat in itself. He pinned the villain's clawed arms behind his back and kneed him in the spine. It was then easy to beat the villain into unconsciousness.

Batman went for Mysterio. He threw a Batarang with deadly accuracy at the villain's helmet. The precision of the blow shattered the helmet, disorienting Mysterio. As Mysterio fumbled for the illusion-generating controls on his belt, Batman leapt onto him and knocked him out.

There were four of the Sinister Six left now.

The crowd was cumulatively tearing through a large web that Spider-Man had created to hold them back. Iron Man was using himself as a human shield against the crowd - his suit's power to maintain the force field had drained. Iron Man knew that he would need to recharge his suit soon, but he had no idea when he would be able to do it. The crowd would simply not let up. There seemed to be no way they could prevail.

"Gods of Mars, grant me strength. Let me triumph over the frailties I have to attain the power of C'rnn C'rrll."

J'Onn J'Onzz was deep in meditation. He had finally reached the level of concentration he would need to accomplish an incredible mental feat.

Unfortunately, his persistent headaches kept working against his efforts to pool his mental strength. But he had to gather his power - the lives of everyone in Boston depended on it.

"The pain! It is nearly unbearable. But I will prevail! H'ronmeer H'rah C'rnn C'rll n'aar n'aam!!"

At that moment J'Onn was able to make contact with the collective unconscious of the crowd, that mysterious area of the human psyche that all members of our species share. J'Onn began to mentally project an image of calmness and tranquillity, working against the feelings of madness that prevailed.

It was slowly working. People were stopping their attacks on Spider-Man, Iron Man, and the Flash. Men, women, and children began to wake up from their insane rage.

The four conscious members of the Sinister Six finally noticed Batman and the Shadow's efforts, but it was too late.

Stegron turned around to see Batman leaping upon him. Batman quickly threw a fume-spewing canister down the Dinosaur Man's gullet. No sooner had Stegron swallowed the small canister than his eyes rolled and he fell to the ground.

Doctor Phosphorous turned to attack the two crimefighters. In a move that they had coordinated a few moments before, Batman doffed his cape and threw it to the Shadow. Immediately, the Shadow leapt upon Doctor Phosphorous and covered him with the cape. The Shadow held the ends of the cape around Doctor Phosphorous while Batman leapt forth. Batman punched the Doctor in the face repeatedly until he went unconscious, the cape preventing Phosphorous from using his deadly touch. The villain fell to the ground; there were only Doctor Octopus and the Joker left now.

Flash finally found the source of the gas, on one of Boston's highest rooftops.

"Here's hoping I can vibrate faster than those gas particles, or I'm going to be the Craziest Man Alive instead of the Fastest!"

Flash zoomed around the huge gas-emitting canister until he found a control panel. With lightning speed he ripped off the cover and triggered a manual shutdown.

The stream of gas began to wane, and then finally wafted away into the evening air.

"Your plan is finished," Batman stated.

Doctor Octopus and the Joker turned to see that four of their comrades had been quickly knocked out.

"Fools," he muttered at his fallen comrades.

The Shadow leapt at the Joker, who was quick enough to pull out his pistol and fire some shots at the superhero. The Shadow's supernatural quickness allowed him to dodge the shots, and he was able to knock the insane villain aside.

Batman had to deal with the tentacles of Doctor Octopus. Octopus slapped them together threateningly with a metallic crash.

Batman pulled a modified Batarang from his belt. Octopus grabbed it in his tentacles - but when he grabbed it, the Batarang exploded with a flash of light. The Doctor was blinded, and it did not take Batman long to leap upon him and beat the stuffing out of him.

The Sinister Six had been defeated again - and again, it had only taken two determined heroes to stop them.

Flash zipped forward and grabbed the satellite remote control from the ground. Since the crowd had calmed down, Iron Man was able to fly over and figure out how to return the satellites to their own control.

"We did it! Earth's satellites are out of the Sinister Six's control," Flash said.

The people of Boston, shepherded by the Boston police, started to go back to their normal lives.

Over the next few days, things went back to normal in the cities on the East Coast. Each member of the Sinister Six was imprisoned in a maximum security facility on a separate continent. This way there would be no possibility of them collaborating again, at least while they remained imprisoned.

Batman, Martian Manhunter, the Shadow, Spider-Man, Iron Man and Flash met in the Watchtower up on the moon.

"Spider-Man and Shadow, since you were instrumental in saving the world," J'Onn stated, "I'm acting on my seniority in the League to make you honorary members of the Avengers League, with all privileges included therein."

"Awesome," said Spider-Man.

"Wow!" Shadow exclaimed.

Batman had to smile grimly at their youthful exuberance. He wished he could be as enthusiastic as the two young crimefighters, but he knew that his life of tragedy and the scum he had to deal with daily would never allow it.

"We'll generate membership cards from the security computer here in the Watchtower," J'Onn continued. "Should there be an emergency great enough, would we be able to call on you?"

"Definitely," said the Shadow. He knew that his grandfather would be very proud of him when he heard the news. Spider-Man agreed to be available as well.

From the depths of a prison cell in Antarctica, Doctor Octopus was already planning his next scheme. But this time, he would leave the others out of it. There had been too much arguing and too many people to get to agree on the plan.

No, the next time, the revenge would belong entirely to Doctor Octopus. And a sweet revenge it would be.

Next: The Shadow and Spider-Man continue their adventures over in Spider-Man for a while, starting with issue #21. Then, come back for Detective Chimp's Christmas adventure in Detective Comics #16.