Preparing the satellites took little time. Soon several different satellites were broadcasting interstellar warnings in all know languages. The messages stated for all to stay away from the Earth at the risk of spreading the plague to other worlds.
Superman's return to Earth brought the news that Luthor and his cohorts had seized the Gotham reactors, and they were holding them ransom. If the safe-zone acknowledged them as the new rulers, power would return to all.
Superman touched down outside the nuclear power plant to land next to Batman and Robin. "Where's Diana?" Superman asked.
"Before Luthor took over the reactor, Wonder Woman needed to see if Paradise Island survived the plague. You know she hasn't been home since before the plague."
"Should I just fly in and finish them off before they damage the reactors?"
"Superman wait," Robin grabbed the Man of Steel's arm.
"They have Lois," Batman said flatly. "Robin and I may be able to sneak in..."
However, before the Caped Crusader could finish, Superman had already flown through the steel door barring the entrance to the power plant's interior. The thunderous clap of the steel door busting off its hinges reverberated throughout the power plant.
As Superman entered the power plant's operation room, he saw Luthor and Solomon Grundy holding some kryptonite.
"How predictable," Luthor laughed. "I knew you'd charge in without care."
Waves of weakness washed over Superman's body as the radiation from the glowing green kryptonite reached him. The Man of Steel dropped to his knees; he no longer even had the strength to carry his own weight.
"Solomon Grundy found pretty rock," Solomon Grundy said in his Cajun accent. Grundy was a different sort of zombie from his undead cousins. He could more or less think, react quickly, and move about freely. However, rigor mortis, slow decay and virtually no mental faculties restricted the plague zombies. Nevertheless, many of the undead mimicked duties they did in life, such as trying to drive a car without knowing how to start it.
"Before you die Superman, I want you to notice that Metallo -- even now -- is holding your girlfriend over a catwalk. If you somehow overpower us, you could never reach Lois in time," Luthor laughed again.
Superman looked over Luthor's shoulder to see that Metallo did indeed hold Lois Lane off the edge of the catwalk. It was obvious that he was to die or Lois would die.
Superman lowered his head onto his chest as his strength continued to wane. He gave one last glance up at the laughing Luthor. That was when he noticed the movement behind Metallo.
Suddenly, an object whistled past Superman's head and a batarang embedded itself into Luthor's hand. Lex dropped the kryptonite as he screamed in pain. Before Solomon Grundy could react, Batman burst into the room and slammed his shoulder into Grundy's chest momentarily stunning him. Without slowing down, Batman grabbed the kryptonite and flung it out the window and down the deep cavernous opening the led to the reactors.
Before Metallo could drop Lois, Robin had already flung a rope around her with his batarang. A quick blast in Metallo's face with a gooey compound from his utility belt blinded the cyborg.
Lois hung suspended over the catwalk as the Boy Wonder and Metallo danced around each other. Both swinging at each other, Robin was at a great disadvantage for the robot's steel fists would instantly crush him if any of Metallo's blows landed.
Superman's strength quickly returned and he launched himself into an attack on Metallo. He had to save Robin and Lois before the steel monster killed either or both of them. The Man of Steel flew out the window past the Caped Crusader fighting both Lex Luthor and Solomon Grundy.
Metallo finally grabbed a hold of Robin. He was in mid throw when Superman grabbed his arm. Metallo dropped Robin unceremoniously onto the mezzanine catwalk stunning him. Metallo turned onto Superman both locking each other in a death grip.
Batman continued his attack onto Solomon Grundy. The hulking man was the greatest threat and Batman had to neutralize him quickly. Lex Luthor pulled out a small canister that he sprayed into Batman's face.
The Cape Crusader felled to the ground coughing. Grundy and Luthor quickly left the control room and ran out onto the catwalk. Superman and Metallo were slamming each other into the wall. Huge chunks of concrete showered the room.
Luthor tripped over the cord suspending Lois. He gave an evil smile and produced a knife. He motioned for Grundy to reel in Lois. In a matter of seconds, Luthor held Lois in his arms with a knife to her throat.
"Superman!" Luthor yelled.
Everyone stopped and looked toward Luthor and his hostage. Metallo and Superman released each other. Robin started to rub his head and Batman's cough still echoed from the control room.
"I see once again the advantage is mine," Luthor laughed. "Metallo, finish him off."
The steel grin on Metallo's face opened into an electronic laugh. "Gladly, Luthor."
Superman felt Metallo's metal hands dig deeper into his throat. Superman knew he could not react fast enough to stop Luthor from slitting her throat. Grundy was now trussing up Robin.
"Oh, the hell with it," laughed Luthor as he began to slice Lois's throat. However, before he could begin the cut a black gloved arm reached out from behind him grabbing his arm. Luthor felt pain shoot through his wrist and he released the knife. In a last desperate attempt, he shoved Lois towards the railing of the catwalk.
Lois bounced off the railing and fell onto the catwalk driving the knife into her stomach. Superman watched in horror as Lois pulled her hand away from her belly to see blood flowing from her wound.
A red cloud filled Superman's vision and a manic scream escaped from his lips. In a mad rage, Superman grabbed Metallo's arms and he twisted them off the robotic giant. Before Metallo could register the loss of his appendages, Superman grabbed Metallo's head and he squeezed with all his might. The steel cranium exploded.
Robin quickly took advantage of Grundy's short lapse of attention and kicked him away. Before Grundy could swing around on the Boy Wonder, Robin had already launched into the air aiming a kick towards Grundy's skull. The vegetation-covered zombie grabbed the Boy Wonder out of mid air and slammed him into the concrete wall. The snapping of bones shot through the air.
Batman grappled with Luthor. The Caped Crusader kept one eye on Superman and Robin's conflict as he tried to subdue Lex. It was out of the corner of his eye that he saw Robin, his ward flung against he wall and slide off with a sickening crunch to the ground.
Unconsciously, Batman tossed Luthor over his shoulder and accidentally tossed the bald man over the catwalk and into the reactors below. Luthor screamed until his body landed with a broken thud onto the concrete below. Before Batman could reach Solomon Grundy, Superman flashed over to the last villain. Before Grundy could react, Superman had his head between his hands. With a sickening crack and a shower of splintered wood Superman twisted Grundy's head off and tossed it over the catwalk to join Luthor's broken body below.
Superman lowered himself down to Lois's unconscious body. He held his hand over the wound of Lois's stomach to staunch to flow of blood.
Batman held the Boy Wonder in his arms, tears streaming down his mask.
"Clark, we have to get them to the Bat Cave immediately if we hope to save them," Batman choked.
Superman silently picked Lois's body into one arm and lifted Batman into the other. In no time, the superheroes were back at the Bat Cave. Batman worked feverishly to tend to Lois and Robin's wounds. Superman paced back and forth in the mansion above.
It was hours later when Bruce entered into the darkened library. There still was not any power.
"Clark, I don't think there is anything I do for either one of them," Bruce broke the silence.
"Bruce, you have to!" Superman cried.
"Even I can't bring the dead back to life. For now they are both conscious and Lois has asked to see you."
Superman lost no time in rushing down to the Bat Cave. He was at Lois's side. Lois turned her head towards Superman and a smile broke across her face.
"Clark, Batman...Bruce, Bruce Wayne," Lois said still trying to grasp Batman's alter ego was the famous millionaire playboy.
"Shhh...don't talk. Rest, you need to rest," Superman said soothingly.
"Clark, I'm going to die. But, before I die, I want to marry you. Please hurry and grab a priest," Lois pleaded.Posted by deg at July 26, 2006 5:00 PM