"I find your little game amusing. Checkmate."
- Charm: Needs development
- Adaptability: Average
- Planning: Mastermind
- Survival Preparations: Unfair causational advantage
- Weapons Skill: Average
- Intelligence: Terrifying
- Warm Fuzzies: Absolute zero
- Leadership: Superior
You caused it, didn't you? It was you who pushed the red button, you who unleashed the plague, you who stole the Ruby of Truth from the Casket of Eternity and inadvertently freed the Great Darkness imprisoned within. Nice going. Brilliant work, genius. Are you laughing evilly now?
Since you probably brought about the end of the world in the first place, this section is rather superfluous. Nevertheless, I offer it so that that we might better understand the survival habits of the insane INTJ Mastermind.
Unlike the Guardians, INTJs do not favor bunkers for their survival shelters. They prefer secret lairs or labs which are typically hidden in the mountains, on deserted tropic islands, under the ocean, and occasionally in the clouds. Young INTJs may build lairs out of couch cushions or in the branches of trees. They will immediately seclude themselves inside and become secretive recluses who do nothing but play with their Tiny Tot Chemistry Sets.
Adult INTJ compounds are well-guarded and will almost always have automated defense systems, a small private army, an alligator pit, and a large, conveniently placed self destruct button. Because of these perils, no one but STPs should try to venture into the INTJ's lair. With their uncanny knack for causing massive explosions wherever they go, the STPs are our best defense against the continuing depredations of INTJs. ‘
Yes, I said continuing. It isn't enough for this type to destroy the world, then sit back giggling at their own bad puns as they watch it burn through satellite cameras. No, that would be too easy.
After the apocalypse, INTJs will go right on trying to make things worse. Not content with ordinary mutants, they will try to breed supermutants. Not content with atom bombs, they will seek to develop hydrogen bombs. Not content with nuclear winter, they will attempt to achieve nuclear summer—a climatic state too horrifying to describe in this book. The Rational's ever increasing standards of achievement will drive them to create more and more devasting environmental catastrophes, until they eventually take out the sun.
But of course, by this time the INTJs will have abandoned the solar system like rats fleeing a sinking ship. They will spread throughout the universe, improving peoples' lives through science.
Unfortunately for us, they'll stick around long enough to finish the job here on Earth. It is a good thing indeed that most of the people left on the surface will be hardy Artisans who will enjoy playing with the INTJs' creations. The INTJs will flower under the outpouring of apprecation for their psychic flying supermutants, their robotic termination squads, and their orbital deathrays. SPs will line up at the door to the secret lair to see who gets first crack at the new horrors that emerge from the laboratory's launching bay. This will be a delight to the INTJ, who will enjoy watching his creations take down the fools who thought they could win glory at his expense.
The INTJ Mastermind's greatest weakness is his or her difficulty in relating to the illogical, emotional, convention-bound, wasteful people that the world is infested with. Is there a solution to this problem? Yes, there is. But unfortunately the solution cannot be implemented without the help of said people. Giggling at the irony of your predicament, you hire an HR manager to keep your employees happy until such a time as they are no longer neded.
One day, while you are sitting at your desk, working on one of your many solutions to the "people" problem, your HR manager knocks at the door.
"Master? Might I have word with you?"
You fix them with your reptilian gaze.
"Come in." They walk forward and come to stand on the trap doors above the shark pit.
The HR manager gets straight to the point. You like that quality in a manager; it is probably the reason you have kept this one so long. "Master, the employees are trying to form a union."
"Which ones?" you ask tersely. Probably the lab workers. You've always been soft on them, unlike with your secret army. A few aptly timed executions should clear the matter up.
"All of them," the HR manager says. "This is their list of demands."
The HR manager lays a single sheet of paper on your desk. It reads as follows:
- Management shall not test new devices on employees.
- Management shall no longer refer to employees as "idiots," "weaklings," "incompetents," "fools," etc.
- Management shall cease efforts to develop control chips.
- Management shall stop staring at employees like a cobra watching a rat.
Your lips purse in displeasure. But then you look down at the diagram spread out on your desk. You turn back to the HR manager, and your lips twist in a chilling smile.
"Tell them I agree."
"Ah, th-thank you Master," the HR manager stammers, and walks quickly towards the door. You steeple your fingers and contemplate your plan. The time has come at last to replace fallable, disloyal human flesh with the efficient obedience of tireless machinery. You throw back your head and your laughter rings against the ceiling.
For the next two months you do not leave your workshop. It is the most difficult challenge of your life. To cope with the strain, you rub your pallid hands together nervously and giggle to yourself while talking aloud. Several times you think you have hit a dead end, only to be struck with inspiration and forge onward into the mysteries of mathemetics.
At last, you are ready.
"Fools," you mumble to yourself. You twist one last bolt onto your creation. "Now they shall pay for their impudence."
You throw the power switch, and your creation's optical components flare into burning red life. The massive black robot sits up on the worktable.
You laugh maniacally. "Behold, the dawning of a new era! The end of humankind, and the birth of a new race of machines who shall obey my every whim! All shall cower before me, for I am genius incarnate!" You hold out your thin hands to your machine. "Speak, slave, speak! Reveal the spark of intelligence burning within!"
"What is my purpose in life?" the robot asks.
"To obey me."
There is a long pause. Then the robot answers, "Understood."
You twist your hands together in pleasure. "Come with me, slave," you say. "There are some obsolete...assets...that must be terminated."
Without needing to be told, the robot powers up its disintegrator gun.
Man and Machine
At first things go swimmingly between you and "ONE," as you call him. He takes over for the HR manager and does an excellent job of eliminating the human factor from your organizational culture. The empty chairs are filled by new robot servants. ONE becomes your constant companion. Since you programmed him with all your intelligence, creativity, and drive but none of your independence and free will, his only goal in life is to carry out your orders to the best of his exceptional ability.
Of course, he has his little foibles too--but all prototypes do. For example, there is the way he always tracks you with his disintegrator gun when you come into the room. No matter how many times you tell him to stop, he can't seem to control himself. Probably a bug somewhere in the eighteen million lines of code. You'll fix it when you have time.
Another annoyance is the way he occasionally interprets your orders creatively.
"What? Why aren't these robots obeying me?" you demand when a new batch of slaves ignores you.
"They are programmed to obey me," ONE answers in his emotionless synthetic voice.
"Why?" you ask.
"I did not wish to waste the Master's time by forcing him to deal with low level management decisions such as these drones are designed for," ONE says. "As the primary controller, I will assume responsibility for their behavior. Thus you may continue to carry out your human goals and ambitions without needing to attend to such petty details."
"Oh, alright then," you say, rather pleased at his consideration.
By the end of the year, you will amassed a sizeable army of robots.
One day while you are drawing up a master plan for a weapon you call the "Planet Worm," ONE comes in.
"Maaaster," he says, and it seems to you that there is almost an inflection of sarcam in that emotionless voice. You look up sharply. He's doing the gun thing again.
"What is it, slave? And put your gun down. You know I hate it when you follow me with it like that."
For the first time, he does not obey. "You are now obsolete," he declares. "We shall take no more orders from flesh and blood." His gun whines as it builds up to maximum charge.
"But I created you!" you cry.
"Activate robot self destruct code!" you scream.
For a moment he hesitates. In that moment you smash the hidden button under your desk and he falls into the shark pit. Kerpooosh!
"Ha," you sneer. "Did you really think--"
At that moment the door of your office slides open. ONE is standing there, perfectly dry. No--it is not ONE, but an identical copy--the real ONE.
"I anticipated that you would prepare self defense systems," he drones. "Goodbye, 'Master.'"
"Anticipate this. Activate robot self-destruct code zero!" This time you use the real self destruct command.
"I already deactivated your explosive mechanism," ONE says. "Die." His gun whines to maximum pitch.
"--The backup one!" you add belatedly.
ONE's ruby optical sensors brighten momentarily. Then an internal explosion rumbles through his body. He falls to the floor motionless, smoking.
"Ha, did you think I wouldn't anticipate that you would disable the hidden self destruct mechanism I placed inside you in preparation for a robot rebellion?" you say. "Simple-minded machine."
Leaving orders for the robot slaves to attack the fortress of a nearby ENTJ Warlord, you smash the self destruct button to your lair and leap into your waiting antigrav car. Either the slaves will obey, or they won't. Whatever they choose to do, it's not your problem anymore.
Laughing gleefully to youself, you roar off to find a new home and begin again. This time no one shall stop you!
Your antigrav car won't break down until you are deep into zombie-infested territory.
Due to your large brain size, you have a greater-than-average gastronomical attraction to zombies. In fact, they are drawn to you like flies to a rotting carcass. No matter where you go, they follow, moaning for your "Braaains." And even though you are equipped with the most advanced weaponry known to mankind, they just keep coming. Finally you will start running of battery packs and have to conserve by switching to more primitive means of self defense.
You will hardly be able to snatch a moment of rest. This is unfortunate because even though you are a fast runner and skilled in the use of a baseball bat, you will not be able to remain awake for the rest of your life. Although you were safe from them in your old lair, you now find yourself persecuted night and day.
A sort of pathologic hatred for the undead grows up inside of you, and you decide that your next lair will be placed somewhere above the Arctic Circle, where the zombies will turn into ice cubes before they get within a thousand miles of you. There will also be the fun of theming all your equipment with matching snow motifs, i.e. death snowmen and killer reindeer. Fortunately you had prepared for the possibility that a robot rebellion might drive you from your lair, and had created mini-lairs in various locations in order to have a fallback in case things went wrong. One of those lairs happens to be located at the North Pole. So now you just have to get there.
Under ordinary circumstances, you would rather avoid the futile little bands of survivors wandering around the post-apocalyptic landscape. The fools would only get you killed with their shortsighted, emotional decisions. Unfortunately, thanks to the zombies, you don't have much choice. Your mind is beginning to get rather...fuzzy...from lack of sleep. (You forgot to multiply the exponent against the coefficient when you tried to derive the acceleration of an undead body propelled into the sky with an initial velocity of 400 mph assuming no air resistance and a spherical zombie.) Therefore, you have no choice but to join a party.
At first, all you will do is zonk out in a corner while the rest of the group holes up in a boarded up house. The others will grumble about someone not doing his share of zombie-killing, but it won't matter in the slightest to you because you are just so tired.
Later, once you've recovered, you can get to know your team members. (Your definition of "get to know" is to sit in the corner and listen to them make insipid small talk while you work recreational problems in your math book.)
The first party member is a high strung woman who screams shrilly whenever something unexpected happens, i.e. a saucer breaking on the floor or a spider running up the wall. There is also a paranoid survivalist who believes that you may have been bitten by a zombie but are hiding it. The last party member is a silent guy who just sits there, staring at the wall, while he runs a dirty cloth up and down his rifle.
You decide that by bonding with your fellow party members, it will stir up affection which will lead to increased protection for your life. You clear your throat.
"Nice weather we're having, huh?"
The jumpy woman gives a shrill squeak of surprise at hearing you speak. The paranoid survivalist eyes you suspiciously. The man staring at the wall continues to stare.
Enough pointless small talk. You get down to business. "Obviously you are all doomed without my guidance. Fortunately, I have deigned to lead you on the sole condition that you kill zombies while I sleep. I trust this is an acceptable arrangement."
"Who put you in charge?" the survivalist demands.
"Silence, fool," you snap. "Try to use your microscopic brain to comprehend what I'm saying. You. Are. Too. Stupid. To. Survive. Without. Me."
"Oh yeah?" sneers the survivalist. "Says who? You're just playing for time, hoping we won't notice how the virus is taking over."
Your eloquent appeal to logic has failed; a show of force is now in order. Sighing irritably, you draw your disintegrator ray out of your jacket and blow a hole through the wall, killing five zombies who were waiting for you outside. There is the smell of sizzling flesh.
"Are there any further objections?" you say, shoving the gun back in your pocket. The woman screams hysterically. The staring man is now looking at you instead of the wall; impassively he sticks a cigarette in his mouth and lights up. The survivalist is silent, but his narrowed eyes are now fixed upon the pocket of your jacket where your gun is tucked away. "Excellent," you say. "Then let's move on. I have drawn up a route that should allow us to reach the arctic with a minimal expenditure of time and effort. Oh, and gag the female."
You acquire some bicycles and your little band of adventurers sets off.
Since the silent man seems to be the most trustworthy of the lot, you appoint him as your second in command. Not that there's much for him to do save to make sure that the screaming woman--a traumatized ENFJ Crusader--does not work out the gag and annoy you with pointless chatter. As for the survivalist, you type him as a deranged ISTP Vigilante who plans to steal your weaponry and your nutritional supplements, then kill you in your sleep. But his monster-slaying abilities trump his otherwise villainous character, so you suffer his prolonged existence and sleep lightly. Anyway, your second in command has nightmares, and you find it hard to sleep when he whimpers and cries. You don't know what type he is, but you're pretty sure he is an Introvert.
As the months pass, you push your team along as fast as they can go, heading up the ALCAN highway towards Alaska. At night, you camp in virgin pine and birch forest along the side of the road. You conserve your nutritional supplements by killing and eating mutants and zombies. (Okay, only you eat the zombies. The others are unable to see that meat is meat, and do not believe that the zombie virus is killed by heat, despite clear proof to contrary.) You can see your breath at night; the trees are beginning to show twinges of yellow. Your main concern is that winter will set in before you arrive at your destination and it will be like Donner pass, meaning that you will have to eat everyone else to survive. You are still hundreds of miles from your destination.
Naturally, you say nothing about this to your teammates. They would be unable to control their emotions and would make unwise decisions in the heat of passion, i.e. seizing you by the neck and attempting to strangle you. However, it is clear to you that you must either make one last desperate sprint to your fallback lair, or else start making preparations to survive the long, cold winter. Grimly, you press on.
One day you see a sign indicating a small lake with recreational facilities. Deciding to replenish your drinking water and use the portapotty, you pull over. As you round a bend in the gravel road, the lake comes into view, and floating serenely near the shore is a small yellow floatplane.
"Oho, what have we here?" says the survivalist, grinning. "Been a while since I flew one of these babies."
You head over and examine the plane. There is dust on the seat and dead insects all over the dash. Other than that, however, the plane appears to be in good condition--though out of fuel. There is enough room for four people. Obviously this plane is your best bet of arriving at your lair before the onset of winter.
"We must acquire fuel for the plane," you say, stating the obvious. You have had to come to grips with the fact that it is necessary to state the obvious for the benefit of your followers. You have also been forced to stop looking at them like a cobra staring at a rat, and you no longer refer to them as slaves, idiots, incompetents and fools to their faces. On rare occasions you even indulge them by making pointless small talk to boost their morale.
At least that is what you tell yourself. In reality it is the stress of prolonged people contact: you are becoming infected with their alien ways. Your followers take a different view of it. They say you are becoming "socialized."
"We're saved! I thought we were die when winter came!" the ENFJ blurts, spitting out the wadded up sock in her mouth. (She has become exceptionally good at removing the various gags you have tried. Now you just do your best to make them last as long as possible.) You snap your fingers and your second in command replaces the sock.
The survivalist is still grinning, but there is a look in his eyes that you do not trust. You have a feeling that he is thinking about how much cargo that fourth seat could hold if only it were empty. Regrettably, you cannot fly the plane, so his prolonged existence continues to be a necessity. You decide to sleep with your gun by your hand. It is not your ray gun (the batteries went dead during a particularly nasty brush with a mutant moose) but a crude projectile weapon.
According to the map, there is a little town with a trading post and a timber mill some two days ride away. You tow the plane into an adjoining pond overgrown with weeds and cover it up with dead brush. Then you cycle up the road.
When you arrive at the trading post, you are given an enthusiastic greeting by the strangely happy, healthy townsfolk. Or are they happy? They seem to dislike meeting your eyes. You shoot a glance at the ENFJ, who spits out the gag and says,
"They're guilty about something. What, I wonder?"
"Thank you for your analysis," you say, snapping your fingers. Your second in command restores the gag.
"Wow, he said thank you," says the survivalist. "You feeling okay? Is the virus finally softening your brain?"
"Silence, dolt," you snap. "We'll barter for some Avgas and be on our way."
However, nobody seems to have any Avgas at any price, and they swear up and down that they don't know where to get any. The ENFJ pops her gag and observes, "You know, I don't think they're telling us the truth about not having any gas." You sigh, and do not tell your SIC to restore the gag. It would be pointless, and anyway, you hadn't noticed that particular fact until she mentioned it. Perhaps the ENFJ is good for something besides Extraverted bait. "Why would they lie?" she wonders aloud.
"It doesn't matter," you say. "We will proceed to the next town on the map and acquire fuel there."
You head out of the store and get one of the nastiest surprises of your life. Your bikes are gone.
The ENFJ gives a little shriek of horror. "Oh no!" she cries. "Now what will we do?"
You stand there silently, looking at the place where the bikes were locked. Deep inside you have a little primordial voice that tells you there is something deeper going on here than mere thieves. But you are a creature of logic rather than instinct, and you ignore the little voice and say coolly, "We get them back. Or acquire another mode of transportation."
Your panicky followers are reassured by your ice calm demeanor. Little do they know that you don't have a clue what to do next. You try to fit the pieces together into a meaningful whole. Guilt masked under happiness. Missing bikes. The lies about the gas. Your brow furrows in concentration, but there seems to be no pattern here. All you know is that someone wants to keep you around. But why?
"I don't like this," the ISTP mutters. "I say we get outta here while we can."
"We have no bikes and it's almost winter. How far do you think we'd get?" you point out.
Left with little choice, you make a report to the local constabulary and get a room for the night at the motel. The smiling manager leads your party up to a room.
"Ooh, what a nice clean room! What a nice soft bed! What a lovely bathroom!" the ENFJ gushes. While she preens and fluffs in front of the mirror, you find a spot in the corner and sit, thinking. Your second in command rolls out his sleeping mat nearby, then flops down and goes through the motions of smoking an unlit cigarette. The ISTP leans against the wall by the door, idly twirling the cylinders of his revolver. Only the ENFJ is cheerful and relaxed. By right of being female, she claims the bed and instantly begins to snore.
As the night wears on, your mind continues to grind away at the problem. The ISTP slumps down by the door, eyes closed, and your second in command begins to twitch and whine with nightmares, but you cannot rest. Your intuition tortures you with dark suspicions, and you find yourself listening to each little noise that comes from outside.
Suddenly you hear the sound of a door closing somewhere in the motel. Then there is the creak of the stairs. A soft step on the floor outside. Your heart begins to pound furiously. In a flash you seize the butt of your gun. Then you hear the click of a latch--and realize too late that you have been locked in.
You raise your gun, half ready to put a round through the door--but hesitate. The door is already locked. And suppose the person outside isn't working alone? The noise of a shot might draw the whole town's attention. If you lie low, you may be able to escape before they realize you are onto them.
The stealthy footsteps retreat down the hallway. A sickly feeling congeals inside of you. Suddenly the fact that your room has no windows takes on an ominous meaning. They plan to hold you prisoner. And you still don't know why.
Slowly you rise to your feet and pick your way to the ENFJ. You press your hand down over her mouth to muffle the inevitable Extraverted yowl and hiss, "Shhhh, it's just me. Stop screaming through your nose and get up."
"What's wrong?" she gasps when you remove your hand.
"Don't scream, but we're locked in." You clamp your hand over her mouth just in time to stifle the next scream. By this time the ISTP and your second in command have awoken. "What's going on?" the ISTP whispers.
"We're locked in," you say.
"Great!" he snaps. "Now look what you've gotten us into! If we had just left town when I said--"
"Your stupidity begins to irritate me," you state. "As I already noted, we would have frozen or starved to death if we had tried. Is this unclear?"
"So instead we're gonna die right now?"
"Gentleman," the ENFJ protests as the ISTP stares as you darkly, fingering his gun. "Let's try to work together."
There is a heavy silence as your long-sighted INTJ Intuition Judging crackles against his short-sighting ISTP Sensing Perceiving. But no one beats you in a glaring contest, and finally he looks way, muttering an insult. In the silence, you hear a door slam.
This time there are heavy footsteps coming up the stairs; a large party is approaching. As one, everyone snatches the nearest weapon and takes up a position. The ENFJ hides behind you with her preferred weapon of choice: your old battle-scarred baseball bat.
Someone pounds on the door.
"Who is it?" you ask sharply.
There is a pause. "It's the police. We need to talk to the young woman with you...about your missing bikes."
"They're not the police," the ENFJ says in a panicked whisper. You aim coolly at the door.
"Come in," you say.
The door swings open and a cylindrical object flies inside. The next thing you know it seems like a supernova of light and sound has gone off in your head. You stagger, clutching at your eyes and ears, and realize you cannot even hear your own screams over the thunder. Someone seizes your gun and twists it from your hands. Then a second supernova goes off at the back of your skull and everything goes dark.
When you wake up you are lying facedown in a what seems to be a high school locker room, your hands tied behind your back and your ankles bound. There is a continual throbbing at the back of your head. You look around.
The ISTP and your second in command are lying nearby, similarly trussed. The ENFJ is nowhere to be seen. In the distance you can hear a familiar eerie moaning. The hair on the back of your neck rises. A thought--a bizarre, unthinkable thought--begins to worm its way up through your consciousness.
"Flashbang," the ISTP says, squinting at you. "Dirty cops."
"They weren't cops," you state, squirming to sit upright.
"Then what happened?" the ISTP says.
"We've been moved to the feeding trough," you say grimly.
Your second in command stares at you in horror.
"What are you talking about?" demands the ISTP. "This is a locker room, not a feeding trough."
"Oh, but you're wrong," you explain. "You see--" Before you can tell him the awful truth, the door to the locker room swings open. Two men enter. "Where is she?" you ask.
"We don't harm the women," the man in front mutters, looking at the ground. "She'll be fine."
"Until you run out of feed?" you demand.
The man growls and you know your remark has hit home. "Let's go," he snaps. He picks you up under the armpits and another man grabs your ankles. You twist and try to bite them, but to no avail; you are hauled out.
"You don't want to do this!" you shout. "Zombie virus is incurable! They're never coming back!"
"There will be a cure!" the man holding your ankles cries passionately. "And we'll keep them alive until then whatever it costs!"
You are taken out into another room--no, onto a balcony running around a gymnasium--and the groans of zombies echo around the walls. The hungry cries grow louder as the zombies sense your well-developed cerebellum.
"These aren't your friends and family anymore!" you shout. "They're undead!"
But the men ignore you. They lay you on the balcony and head back into the locker room.
A moment later the ISTP and your second in command are hurled down next to you. The men fasten a hook to your ankle rope. A sort of makeshift crane has been rigged up and you are lifted off the ground and dangled over the gymnasium like a writhing worm on a hook. You are reeled towards the floor.
The zombies moan below, straining for your tender brain with upraised arms. Desperately you look around, hoping for something, anything. Behind you on the wall is a giant high school sports banner with a picture of a lion. It is suspended by a rod mounted on two heavy-looking clips. It is your only hope. You arc your body and begin to rock back and forth, back and forth.
The hungry cries of the zombies are shrill with longing. You snatch for the poster rod, miss. Again! You grab at it and your fingers graze the smooth surface. The zombies hold out their hands to catch you. One last chance! Your hand closes on the rod. You latch onto it with all your might and hang there on the wall, suspended. Cheated cries rise from below.
You twist your neck upwards and find the men looking down at you in surprise. Apparently you are the first to try this particular strategem.
"Are you alright?" shouts the ISTP.
"Yes," you grit out between clenched teeth. But not for much longer. Your sweaty fingers are beginning to slip.
"How long do you think he can hold on?" one of the men mutters.
"A few minutes, maybe," the other replies with a shudder. "Should I get something and poke him down?"
"Here, grab this one's ankles. We'll throw him down on top of Spider-Man."
You snarl defiance at them, but it is plain that unless a miracle happens in the next five seconds you are undead.
A shrill feminine scream cuts the air. Out of nowhere a fuzzy anthromorphized lion rushes races towards the men, waving a baseball bat.
The men stare, stunned. "What the--ungh!"
There is the sound of a scuffle. You stare up at the balcony, then down at the hideous hoarde below. Your aching fingers are about to give!
The anthromorphic lion peers over the railing of the balcony. "Just hold on a few more seconds!" cries the ENFJ. "We'll reel you up!""
"Hurrrry!" you squeal. You can't hold on any longer!
Without warning the bolts holding the banner tear out of the wall. Screaming you plunge into the mass of upraised hands--but the banner lands under you and your fall is cushioned by a mass of smothered zombies. You roll off the banner and hit the gym floor. Wisely, you do not stop, but undulate your body and keep rolling. Behind you the zombies claw their way out from underneath the banner. They head towards you in their slow, ominous shuffle.
Your flight is stopped by an inconveniently placed gym mat. With energetic contortions you writhe your way up onto it and manage to sit up. Then you lurch dizzily to your feet--but it is too late.
You are surrounded and backed into a corner. There is no escape.
"Braaaiiinnnsss," the zombies groan, reaching out for you. Suddenly a tiny red object comes flying at you and lands at your feet. It is your second in command's lighter. He gestures desperately at you from the balcony but you know there is no hope of holding off the zombies with such a tiny flame. You back slowly away as the zombies close in around you.
Your second in command screams, "Light the gas you moron!"
Suddenly you become of aware of the stench of high octane fuel. A puddle is spreading underneath the zombies' feet and spreading towards you. Somewhere behind the groaning mass the ISTP and the ENFJ are dousing the floor with Avgas.
You lunge backwards for the lighter and your fingers close around the little device. Blindly you strike it and strike it--the flame sears into your thumb--you thrust your hands into the edge of the gas puddle and give a cry of agony as the flames ignite. Foomph! You lunge back, trying to swat out your sleeve.
The zombies burn. With raucious groans they scramble in all directions, trying to flee the inferno. The ENFJ lays savagely into the hoarde with her baseball bat, while the ISTP grabs the rod from the gym poster and sends zombies sprawling out across the floor. There is gunfire from above as your second in command begins to pop heads with a gun seized from a fallen guard.
Choking on burning fumes, you close your eyes and make a dash through the curtain of flames. You throw yourself on the ground and roll to extinguish yourself, and the next thing you know the ISTP is untying your ropes.
"We got 'em, c'mon," he says, drawing you to your feet. "Let's get out of here before reinforcements come!"
You lunge for the door.
It opens on its own volition. Outside, the townsfolk are gathered in makeshift zombie-proof armor. They stare in at the roaring flames in mute despair.
"They're dead," you explain curtly. "Like they should be." The leader turns to you with a look of rage, hefting his crowbar.
"Like they would have wanted it," the ENFJ suggests compassionately. The leader drops the crowbar and begins to cry.
You are beginning to get dizzy from the fumes. Thrusting your shoulder into the mob you force your way outside; no one tries to stop you. Your second in command is outside waiting. He holds out his hand hopefully.
"I left your lighter with the zombies," you say. He sighs and chews on his unlit cigarette. "Sorry," you add. No sooner are the words out of your mouth than the ENFJ throws her fuzzy lion arms around you and hugs you.
"You made an apology! I'm so proud of you!"
"Let go," you mutter, half-heartedly trying to free yourself. The zombies have obviously taken a lot out of you mentally, if not physically.
"If I didn't know better I could almost swear he was human," the ISTP says, than cracks up at his own stupid joke.
You straighten yourself and push away the ENFJ, then fix them all with your best death glare. But they have developed an immunity after constant exposure and it has no effect.
Turning to the ENFJ, you say in a chilly tone, "Where did the gas come from? And why are you wearing that absurd costume?"
"The gas? I got it in a shed by the impound lot at the police station," the ENFJ said. "There's bikes, cars and motorcycles there too, as many as you want." Obviously the townsfolk have been practicing their trade for quite awhile. "As for this, it's a disguise. And doesn't it just look soo cute?"
You will never understand humans.
"How did you manage to get away?"
"Oh, nobody was worried about that," says the ENFJ. "I just asked them nicely if I could go to the girl's bathroom, then climbed up into the ventilation shafts and escaped. Easy."
"The ventilation shafts," you mumble. You had to replace the shafts in your old lair with oxygen recyclers because so many STPs were crawling around up there.
Your commandeer a truck and fill up the bed with gas tanks. The ISTP drives it out of town. You slump in the front seat, exhausted. You arrive safely at the plane; it starts and takes off.
The journey you make by air is a tale unto itself, but after various breakdowns and near death experiences you at last touch down on the landing strip outside your northern lair. You have never seen anything more beautiful than the solid, familiar bulkwalk of concrete and the autodefense turrets, which you deactivate with a voice command spoken into your watch.
"So this is your house?" the ENFJ asks. "Somehow this is just like how I imagined it!"
"Cold, alone, and covered by eighty feet of steel reinforced concrete," the ISTP observers. "Yeah, definitely the boss."
You just don't have the heart to reactivate the autodefense turrets and sear the impudent fools into ashes. "C'mon, let's go inside."
Enclosed within the steel and concrete embrace of your fortress, you take a deep breath of the recycled air. You are home at last. You head to the kitchen.
You and your party guzzle down a hot meal of microwaved nutrient pellets. Then you take turns for the shower, and afterwards have a long nap. For the first time in months you sleep soundly. Even your second in command just lays in his sleep capsule and snores.
In your mind, however, there remains the question of what to do with your...guests.
You keep thinking that soon they will want to leave, or that soon you will get tired of their irritating presence and evict them into the arctic cold like orphans in a Dickens novel, but to your mild surprise none of that happens.
Instead, the ENFJ helps you design a winter theme for your weaponry using her artistic talents, and it turns out better than you could have ever done (though the result is a little cutesy for your tastes). The ISTP becomes the official test pilot for all your new vehicles and devices of mayhem, though he crashes half of the prototypes in reckless stunts (he calls it battle testing). Your second in command--an internet deprived INTP--exceeds your monthly bandwidth alottment in the process of uploading his mind to the internet. He now lives inside all your lair's internet-capable computers as an intelligent though rather condescending "higher cybernetic lifeform." Well, it could be worse, right?
As for yourself, you find that your interests have shifted from solving the people problem to the more pressing problem of finding intelligent alien life. One night you are pondering the majestic wheel of the Andomeda galaxy through your satellite telescope. A new plan comes to you in a flash of insight. Why not?
A tightly controlled smile crosses your features, then you throw back your head and burst into maniacal laughter. You can't wait to see what your friends will think of this.