Auto King’s Man

I was shaking as I entered the Auto King’s lair, knowing things couldn’t go well for me. I hated being the messenger, especially when I had to deliver bad news. 

The Auto King was lifted high in the air, currently being worked on by a team of professional mechanics. It seemed like they were giving him a full suspension service. The slick black car looked down at me and frowned. 

“What is it, Nathaniel?” he asked.

I tried to slow my breathing and stop the trembling but had no luck. My voice shook as I spoke. “My lord, I’m afraid to inform you that Operation Sneaky Fighters has failed. Somebody found out about it and single-handedly destroyed the base. Rufus was found there. He is dead, my lord.”

The Auto King was contemplative for a moment. “Is our plan to take control of all Ringwood automotive services still intact?”

“It is,” I said. “Do you want to go forward? It’s a dangerous plan without the sneaky fighters there to help manage it.”

The plan involved taking control of all the auto shops so that every sentient car would be exposed to our campaign for autocracy. With all the sentient cars thinking about it, either consciously or subconsciously, they’d be more likely to join our resistance and our fight against the Church of the Tinted Flock. 

“Do it,” said the Auto King. “I don’t want there to be any vehicle inspections within Ringwood or its surrounding suburbs without our influence. It is crucial that this part of the plan works, with or without the sneaky fighters there to help. Do not fail me again, Nathaniel.”

I bowed low and retreated out of the room, my hands still shaking. When the Auto King got mad, he kind of reminded me of Dark Invader, the villain from the Space Battles movies. But at his core, the Auto King was a good guy. He had to be, right? Because I definitely wasn’t one of the bad guys or serving one of them. Autocracy was what the world needed, not democracy with humans. We were the good guys. Right?

Great Auto Conspiracy

I was going to get to the bottom of this conspiracy, even if it was the end of me. I didn’t care if I lived to tell people the truth. I just wanted to know what was actually going on. What did space flight engineers have to do with car repair? Why had I been mysteriously sent a note saying to find a mechanic in space? 

My latest lead brought me to a mechanic workshop in Brighton, where everything seemed perfectly normal. I entered the reception with a shortsword on my hip and an automatic crossbow in each hand. The receptionist almost leapt out of her seat, so shocked to see me. After a moment she recomposed herself.

“Is this a Brighton auto electrical shop that offers services in space?” I asked.

The woman wiped her brow and seemed relieved. “You’re here for the tryouts, then? Want to be one of the Auto King’s space crew? You were supposed to bring your own lab equipment, but I suppose what you have there will do for now. Head on in.”

So the Auto King was behind this, huh? He was building an army of science bandits for some nefarious purpose. That explained why this whole operation was in Tasmania, and why they needed car workshops involved. If the Auto King needed tyre replacement around Brighton, he could come straight here. And if they needed transportation through the Bass Strunnel for their crew of lab staff, it only made sense to enlist some workshops.

The receptionist pointed me through the back door, and I headed there without thinking it through further. I’d already come this far. No turning back now. Somehow, I had to destroy the Auto King’s army. And it seemed I was doing so from the inside.

I hoped it wouldn’t take too long. My wife was going to have dinner ready in twenty minutes, so I had to dismantle this operation quickly and head home. This definitely wasn’t how I expected my day to pan out, I’ll admit.

Challenge Accepted

I’m so glad that Bandit is feeling better. We had to continue with our work while he recovered in the hyperbaric chamber, cleaning all the sewers of Melbourne so that we could stop Evil Space Wizard from destroying the entire city. Today we received a letter in the mail from said evil wizard from space. He’s challenged us to a final battle back where this whole thing started: the suburb of Sweden, where Australia’s Next Top Office was filmed. If we defeat Evil Space Wizard, he won’t be able to hurt anyone like that good looking rogue, Bandit, anymore. If he wins, though, this city is doomed.

It will be strange to go back to Sweden. By now, we should have been finishing our best efforts at office interior design. Melbourne residents would be watching the show on Not Flicks, wondering who was going to win. It would have been amazing. Archerak would have kept cheating through his magic. Jack Zebraman would have brought charisma to the cast. Bandit and the non-evil Space Wizard would have continued to make an awesome team. We would have made some awesome offices. Unfortunately, it was not to be. Maybe once this is all over, we’ll get together to design some commercial office fitouts around Melbourne for fun. We could even work together. I’m sure that would be really cool.

Space Wizard has a plan to stop his evil clone, which is good news since he’s super powerful. We need Bandit back, though. He’s essential to our plan, with his glass smashing abilities. Hopefully, he’s feeling up to it. He doesn’t need to heal in the hyperbaric chamber anymore, but I’m not sure he’s ready for such a big showdown. It’s not like we have much of a choice, though. This is the fate of Melbourne we’re talking about. I’m sure he’ll be fine. If he can achieve some of the best office designs I’ve ever seen, he can help us save the city.

– Ms Frankie