A Night Off at the Watchtower . . . Almost

Black Canary put out a call on all hero channels asking any heroes who could to meet at the Justice League Watchtower. Though only a handful responded, it turned out that the heroine had a small commemorative ceremony in mind–along with cake and punch. (Unfortunately, the bakery had sent a wedding cake by accident, and since deliveries to Earth orbit are difficult enough already, they went with it.) Although there seemed to be some friction between Wonder Woman and Livewire, as well as between Livewire and Firestorm, Black Canary managed to keep things in line long enough to provide certificates of recognition to all the heroes in attendance in thanks for their efforts on the many crises that they’d helped with during the past year.

Before they could get into the refreshments, however, the Watchtower alarms went off and the computer warned of an unknown anomaly within the Watchtower that seemed to be temporal in nature. Before anyone could react, a vortex appeared against the back wall and several shimmering translucent shapes emerged to scatter themselves along the floor of the Watchtower. They quickly coalesced into the form of several velociraptors and one T. Rex. As they advanced toward the heroes–all but one that seemed to be holding back–Black Canary had a distinct sense of deja vu, harking back to when the Time Commander had sent Utahraptors into the Watchtower to distract the heroes while he looted the League trophy room.

The raptors lept at Black Canary, Firestorm, and Troia, while the T. Rex went after Wonder Woman. Unnoticed, Livewire turned into electricity and entered the wiring of the Watchtower. Black Canary managed to send the raptor attacking her flying with a Canary Cry, but it jumped back up and lept at her again, causing her to increase the power of her Cry, knocking it farther back and into the portal it had emerged from. Firestorm went insubstantial and dropped through the floor, and the raptor attacking him crashed into the table, leaping up on it and trashing the cake and punch. Troia managed to get her lasso of persuasion around the necks of both raptors going for her, and it seemed to have a calming effect on them.

The T. Rex seemed uncertain and was sniffing out Wonder Woman who tried to calm it by speaking to it in a soothing manner . . . till Livewire zapped it from below. The bolt of electricity stunned the creature momentarily, though it also seemed to drive it to attack Wonder Woman. Given no choice the Amazon Princess countered with a mighty blow, as Firestorm turned the deck beneath it to tar, causing the Rex to sink even as Wonder Woman’s blow rendered it unconscious. Livewire shifted to the raptor that had been holding back, looking as though it had merely been watching the proceedings. Her electrical attack caused that raptor to begin to spark and smoke and seem to fall apart, before it disappeared, cuing the electrical heroine in that it was actually a machine, as opposed to the other, living creatures.

As the raptor at the rear disappeared, the remaining creatures seemed to get wilder, the one on the table leaping at Wonder Woman and the two charging Troia. Wonder Woman managed to turn in time to deliver a powerful blow against the raptor leaping at her, sending it sprawling and hard into the wall of the Watchtower. It, too, disappeared. Troia sidestepped the other two raptors, causing them to crash into the conference table, and Livewire zapped both of them, dropping them as they disappeared as well. Black Canary, fearing another diversion, had jumped down to the lower level of the Watchtower to make sure the trophy room was secure, but she found no problem there. By the time she returned, the threat had ended and the portal itself vanished as had the dinosaurs.

Livewire filled the others in on the mechanical nature of the one raptor, and the heroes discussed the situation, fearing that they might now be the targets of yet another time-manipulating villian, or possibly even one of a mystical nature, as Wonder Woman ventured. On Wonder Woman’s suggestion, Black Canary determined to contact one of their magical allies–Zatanna or Dr. Fate both being mentioned–to set up mystical wards to protect the Watchower and on Troia’s to try to get the Watchtower sensors set up to search for future temporal incursions. Although Black Canary had expressed the hope that this might have been a random occurrence, the fact that one of the raptors had been a machine, watching and possibly controlling what had happened, seemed to rule that out. So Canary asked all of the heroes to be on the alert for any more similar events happening and to report back should they detect them.

Heros Present: Wonder Woman, Troia, Firestorm, Livewire, Saturn Girl, Black Canary.

Villains: Velociraptors, T. Rex, Robo-Raptor, possible unknown time villain . . .

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