As if a switch had been thrown off in their heads, the few remaining zombies collapsed.
I was riding on a dizzying endorphin-fueled high, but I didn't let that stop me. The first thing to do was to secure Toy-Master--but Mulligan was on it. He removed his remaining armanents (brass-knuckles, a few odd-shaped 'smiley-face' gas-canisters, a giant extendable boxing glove, a set of wind-up teeth...). Paladin turned and leveled several searing hot blasts at Brick, shattering the ice that covered him. Woot and I turned to grab Boomerang Kid.
Except he was missing.
"Crap," I said. "He got away."
"He was fighting you with boomerangs," Woot said.
"He was beating you with boomerangs," he said.
"Look, the guy's some sort of boomerang ninja, okay?"
Brick shook off what ice remained, his skin returning to its dark, ruddy color. Mulligan kept an eye on the unconscious Toy-Master; Paladin was waiting for me. Hadn't even taken a step forward before he seized one of the zombies up in a giant white hand and turned it my way.
"Look familiar?" he asked, using his other oversized hand to point at the zombie's forehead.
There was something burned into the corpse's temple--a black symbol. A skull without its jaw.
"Scourge," I said. "How did he find us?"
"We didn't squawk," Brick said, brushing off a few chips of ice from his arms.
"Well I sure didn't tell anyone," I said, and I meant it. Not even Anna.
"That doesn't make any sense," Paladin said. "If you didn't tell anyone, and we didn't tell anyone, then--"
He stopped in mid-sentence. And then he turned to Woot.
The goggle-clad boy was suddenly looking very, very quiet.
"Woot," Paladin said, speaking very slowly. "...you didn't tell anyone, did you?"
"Um--I mean," Woot said, "I didn't tell anyone any specifics... But I might have, uh, mentioned something about meeting the Skull on twitter..."
The sound of four hands simultaneously slapping their foreheads was like a gunshot.
"You twitted about this meeting?!" I said as I clenched my fists.
"It's not twitting, it's tweeting," Woot said with a defensive tone.
"It's twitting, you twit," I corrected him. "Jesus Christ!"
"Look. Calm down," Paladin said. "We managed to beat them. Nobody got hurt. And now we've got at least one of Scourge's men in custody."
"Fine. Right. Okay. You getting all this, big bird?" I asked, touching the side of my helmet.
"Hey," I said. "This thing working? Testing, testing. Can you hear me?"
"Oh, God," I said. The realization hit me head-on like a truck full of rocket-fuel.
I pulled the drawstring that activated the Noot Suit. The electromagnetic sheathe hummed with energy; a noise was emitted from the circuitry that engulfed me--the sound resembled someone slowly saying the word 'noot' over and over.
"Where are you going?" Mulligan shouted.
"Parking lot. Two blocks south," I said. "I think this was a decoy. Scourge wasn't after me."
The suit's circuitry burned with power. The whole room shimmered around me.
"He was after my handler."
In a shock of blue flame, I disappeared.