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Almost Invincible (Invincible SI)

What do you do when, without any explanation or reason, you wake up in someone else's body? You survive, you fight, and you stand tall; to stay alive, you do whatever you deem necessary. You become invincible. . . Patreon Early Access Chapters! patreon.com/EmmaCruzader Now you can find illustrations of this and other stories on my twitter (@Emma_pressure) where I will start uploading them some time after being published in advance on my patreon (patreon/EmmaCruzader) there you can also find advance chapters, exclusive votes and previews (like sketches) as well as the final illustration in the best possible quality.

EmmaCruzader · Anime & Comics
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16 Chs

4: Changes and More Changes

4: Changes and More Changes

School, a place he never got along with. Mark stared at the building he had to enter with a furrowed brow. Honestly, he was glad the original Mark was about to graduate; he didn't think he could endure more than a month of attending classes.

As he walked towards the entrance, a familiar guy seemed to be waiting for him: William. This time, he remembered his name. Memories of the original Mark were coming to him, though in a strange way. They were like dreams; he saw flashes of them from time to time while he slept.

It honestly felt a bit weird and creepy. He just hoped that one of those future memories to recover wasn't one where the original Mark was having fun alone.

Maybe he was Mark now, but there were things he didn't need to see.

William approached him with his hand up, and Mark returned the greeting, clapping their palms together.

"Hey, man, you missed out on a lot while you were gone" William began ranting about all the usual teenage gossip, and Mark only half paid attention.

If he was going to waste time going to school, he might as well use it to train with the speed force.

His main goal was to access it without needing to say the formula. His connection was so weak that he needed a crutch like that, and he absolutely hated it.

It made no sense to try to train anything else derived from the speed force if he couldn't even use it at will. So, while he walked to his locker and listened to William, he was also trying to access the speed force naturally.

It was difficult; the thing barely reacted when he prodded it, metaphorically, with his mind.

Trying to grasp it and harness it was proving to be a challenge; something was missing. Maybe he needed to look at it from another angle, try something different?

"And with that, it's more than three students who have disappeared. People are really starting to panic, you know" his attention returned to reality upon hearing William.

Students missing? Confusion and doubt filled his mind. He didn't remember anything like this in the series.

But then again, this wasn't a series; it was the real world, and maybe a bunch of things were happening at the same time, things that wouldn't be mentioned on screen if they had nothing to do with the plot. Still, something told him this wasn't so simple.

A bad feeling filled his stomach.

"That sounds bad. Does anyone have a clue what might be happening?" William shook his head in response to his question.

"No, bro, it's quite confusing. I heard the principal plans to suspend classes again if this continues" they soon reached their lockers. Mark looked at the combination lock and couldn't help a drop of sweat from falling from his forehead.

He hadn't thought about he didn't know how to open the original Mark's locker. When he punched that guy a week ago, he had been sent home without having to worry about it, but now...

He narrowed his eyes and focused his vision.

The Viltrumites were really more interesting than the television program let on.

Perhaps because it wasn't the focus, but their superhuman abilities were something that, in his opinion, should have been explored more.

For example, their vision. While they didn't have telescopic vision capable of perceiving cells or atoms like Superman could, it was still something to consider.

By focusing his sight, he could easily see the microscopic wear generated by time on the metal of the combination lock. This way, figuring out the combination was easy, and with a few simple movements, his locker opened without a problem.

"Bingo~"

While celebrating his small achievement, a sudden voice caught his attention.

"Hey, I heard you gave Tod a beating"

When he turned his gaze, he couldn't help but feel somewhat confused. A blonde girl with short hair down to her shoulders was smiling pleasantly at him.

Okay, this felt somewhat familiar, but at the same time, there was something truly wrong about it.

The bad feeling he had felt before multiplied by a thousand, and cautiously, he opened his mouth, hoping to be absolutely wrong.

"Hey, Amber..."

She raised an eyebrow at the strange way he greeted her, but her smile didn't falter.

"And here I thought you had already forgotten about me. With so many days absent, I thought you had been expelled"

And his bad feeling came true. For a moment, he considered closing his locker, turning around, and going home.

When he thought things were starting to go well, the universe decided to make it clear that being invincible meant being the one who gets beat up.

In one way or another, he swallowed but his mouth felt dry. He stopped his childish impulse to just escape from things and decided to go with the flow for now.

He needed to know what else had changed. And an easy way to do that was right in front of him. Besides the obvious visual difference, what else was there about this "Amber"?

"They almost did it, but I managed to convince the principal that it was all a big misunderstanding. It helped that I've never caused major problems before"

Amber smiled and said, "And that's why everyone was surprised when you sent Tod to the infirmary. You never gave the impression of being like that. Tell me, Mark, what else are you hiding?" She leaned forward, her blue eyes looking at him intensely as if she were really trying to see through him.

"Believe me, you have no idea."

Before Amber could say anything else, the bell rang, indicating they should hurry. She seemed somewhat annoyed by this, but her good humor quickly returned. She took out a piece of paper and a pen from her bag, quickly wrote something down, and put it in Mark's hand before starting to leave.

"Well, Mister Mysterious, if you ever want to tell me your dark secrets, then call me"

Watching her leave, Mark looked at the paper, debating whether he should just throw it away or keep it.

He looked at Amber's back, then at her butt, and then at her legs, and decided that keeping it wouldn't hurt anyone.

After all, he needed to release some stress.

From the side, William watched the whole situation without believing that Mark had actually gotten a girl's number.

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Back at home, Mark was sitting in the backyard, "meditating." It wasn't really meditation; it was more accurate to call it one of his attempts to understand the Speed Force.

While he was sitting, his eyes were focused on everything happening in front of him. Every movement, no matter how small and slow, didn't escape his sight.

The Viltrumites had enhanced perception, and their own version of "bullet time" which was obvious since without something like that, they could never fly at the speeds they did.

It felt very similar to the sensation he felt when he first experienced the Speed Force, although not as focused. There were subtle differences, but it was similar enough for him to use it as a means to understand that state and try to return to it.

Although it was somewhat boring, Mark would say that watching an ant move hundreds of times slower than its original speed wasn't exactly the best entertainment.

Still, he felt it was working. Somehow, seeing everything in his vision move slowly made him feel the strange sensation of speed. It was contradictory, but he couldn't explain it better.

It was the feeling that he was faster than everything else in front of him. In some way, that stimulated the lightning sleeping within his body a bit.

As if it wanted to come out and force everything else to be equally fast.

As if being slow were an insult. It was strange because, literally abstractly, he was feeling the feelings of the Speed Force, or at least those of the small speck of Speed Force within him.

And that was something else he had come to discover. His Speed Force and the Speed Force that had interacted with him was not exactly the same. He didn't know if it was his own discovery or something the Speed Force itself had provided him.

But essentially, the Speed Force was an omnipresent force, but being omnipresent, it couldn't have individuality. If you are everything, then you are nothing.

That's why the Speed Force chose bearers to manifest itself, planting a seed in them that generated individuality, connected to the Speed Force, of course, but at the same time connected to its bearer, as something symbiotic.

And that's why the Black Flash existed. Once a part of the Speed Force gained individuality, getting rid of it was probably not pleasant. He didn't know how or why, but the Speed Force needed the Black Flash to personally harvest their lives and return the energy in them to its original source.

If he had to guess, the Speed Force connected to a bearer was so related to them that even in death, their souls could escape any heaven or hell that existed simply by running. That is, they didn't die completely, and considering the capabilities he remembered in those with the Speed Force, they could very well avoid their own death by running back in time. In this way, the Speed Force would never bring back the "borrowed" energy, and that's where the Black Flash came in.

Of course, there were many doubts with this thought. If the Speed Force is everywhere, why does it need to recover something that is already within it? Is it because of this "individuality" generated by the Speed Force within the bearers that resist returning to being "nothing"?

And if so, what happens with the manifestation of the Speed Force that had appeared before him? If he remembered correctly, Wally West had managed to escape the Black Flash by running beyond time. Somehow, this had made him important enough for the Speed Force to decide that the individuality he had created would be its main sapience?

Of course, this was just a basic explanation and some theories. Mark still didn't know many things about the Speed Force and how it works, and if he was honest with himself, he didn't think he would ever comprehend every aspect of a primordial cosmic force even if he were given ten lives.

"I think I told you when you were eleven years old that Viltrumites don't have heat vision. Even if you stare at those ants all year, you won't make them start burning" Nolan's voice interrupted Mark's contemplations. He turned to see his father, who was wearing his Omni-Man suit and looking at him from the back door leading to the backyard.

"I was just thinking about something. I heard from Will that some guys disappeared at school, and I was wondering if I should try to solve it" he stood up and walked over to his father, giving an explanation he thought was fairly decent.

Nolan frowned slightly.

"Listen, Mark, I know you're still adjusting to your new responsibilities, but you must understand that people like us are made for more... important things. Although the disappearance of some teenagers is worrying, the reality is that's police work. We stop tsunamis, we halt earthquakes, we save the world! We can't waste our time on such... mundane things"

Nolan put his hand on his son's shoulder and continued.

"Maybe it's time I showed you what you're made for. Come with me; it's time you helped your father patrol."

Mark had a lot to say about Nolan's words, but this wasn't the time or place. Instead, he just nodded and went to put on his suit. In fact, he had wanted to talk more with his father for various reasons.

While a week of training together was productive, there wasn't really much conversation between them beyond the advice he gave to improve.

Maybe he could use this to ask some really important questions he needed answers to.

Soon, both took off into the sky.

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Among the clouds, as they flew over the city, Mark conversed with his father.

"How different is Viltrum from Earth?" At his question, Nolan blinked, surprised but in good humor, his son's interest in Viltrum was a good thing, a very good thing.

"Very different. Earth is... backward, even primitive. Much of its technology is honestly obsolete. Viltrum is quite the opposite; we possess the galaxy's best technological advancements and the brightest minds. Every day, new and incredible discoveries that help improve life on thousands of worlds are born on Viltrum"

"As a society, Viltrum and Earth are also different. Humans lack unity; they're selfish and only look out for the interests of a few. A Viltrumite serves the empire with all they have; everyone works together for their improvement. All are part of something greater, and for that, we can be proud"

Pride was evident, as was the clear disdain for Earth. As a human in his first life and half-human in this new one, Mark couldn't help but feel a little annoyed. Sure, Earth might be trash, but it was his trash. Perhaps it was stupid; it was the feeling he had as a human.

"Come on, Dad, Viltrum can't be so perfect. Can you honestly tell me there's nothing wrong with it?" Maybe he pushed his luck a bit there. The way he remembered it and how it sounded right now, his father fit perfectly into the mold of an ultra-nationalist fascist soldier. If he angered him by mistake, things could get out of control

His father seemed to furrow his brow a bit at his question, but quickly his expression relaxed, and he seemed somewhat pensive, as well as... shy? That sent shivers down Mark's spine, making him move away from him a bit without him noticing.

"Well, if I had to give a point to Earth over Viltrum... it would be in relationships, if you know what I mean." The look he gave made Mark understand, though it made him uncomfortable.

"What's different? From what you've told me, Viltrumite biology and human biology aren't so different from each other." Despite the discomfort, curiosity was greater.

"That's true, but the way a Viltrumite views sex and the way a human views it are very different." Nolan tried to find the most suitable way to explain it before continuing.

"For a Viltrumite, sex only has one purpose: procreation. Due to our biology and how powerful our DNA is, there really isn't any effective contraceptive method."

Mark raised an eyebrow.

"Seriously? Not even condoms?"

Nolan laughed.

"Do you seriously think there's a material that could survive two Viltrumites interacting with each other in the bed?

Mark thought about it, yeah, it didn't seem like a condom would be feasible.

Not at least when two Viltrumites entered the equation.

"Anyway, as I was saying, due to this, Viltrumites view sex as merely reproductive. Once you have it, it's because you've decided to have a child, and that's where the second problem comes in"

Nolan debated with himself about his next words.

"Viltrumites... We live much longer than humans, much longer. Therefore, for us, having children isn't really a priority. Our bodies are always in the best condition to do so, so a Viltrumite doesn't seek to have offspring easily"

For that reason, Mark was Nolan's first child, even though he had lived for over a thousand years.

And that probably wouldn't have happened if humans weren't so similar to Viltrumites. In the end, any other species was unworthy of mixing with the pure blood of Viltrum, and humans barely qualified.

And for that reason, it was important for Mark to understand that Earth would be better with Viltrum in it.

Nolan waited for the question he thought Mark would ask: how long his species really lived. This could be tough for his son, but if he accepted it, maybe it would make it easier for Mark once he told him his plan.

But Mark was thinking of something else.

'so my ultimate enemies are a bunch of prudish space nazis... Great'

He didn't know if this was a good thing or not.

"So, the glorious Viltrum is filled with virgins and saints?"

His son's words left Nolan stunned; he didn't know what to respond for a moment before starting to laugh.

"Well, I can't say that's untrue. I certainly discovered a whole new world once I came to Earth and met your mother" Nolan raised his eyebrows in a way that suggested something, and Mark would have been offended if Debbie really were his mother.

"Eww!" Still, he had to play along, making Nolan laugh even more.

At this rate, he could win an Oscar.

Before they could continue talking, there was a strange beep coming from a communicator his father carried with him. Suddenly, Omniman's demeanor became serious as he read the incoming message.

"I have to go, Mark. It seems they need me elsewhere. Remember what I told you, focus on the truly important things, remember"

Nolan suddenly blurred, leaving a secondary image, making Mark open his eyes in astonishment. He looked to where his father had gone and realized he couldn't even see his figure in the distance.

How... how fast was he really?

Even with his connection to the Speedforce, he couldn't catch the moment when he started to accelerate. Mark's expression turned serious; he knew Omniman was holding back during their training, but... he didn't expect it to be to this extent.

Before he could dwell on it further, something else caught his attention: an explosion followed by several more began to rock the city beneath his feet.

With no time to lose, he descended rapidly to the ground, looking on in confusion as an army of thousands of robots began to invade the city suddenly.

His body crashed into a dozen of them, mechanical parts flying everywhere, and suddenly hundreds of laser guns aimed at him.

"All right, Skynet, I'll give you the chance to obediently return to the hard drive from whence you came. If you refuse, don't blame me for tossing you in the trash can" He didn't know who to address, so he looked at all the robots around him.

"who the hell are you?" The voice made him look into the distance where two huge blue figures mounted what looked like a high-tech ship.

Mark blinked as he recognized them as the Mauler twins. Since when did these guys have an army of robots under their command?

"People call me invincible, and if you're as smart as you claim to be, then you'll shut down your terminators and leave the city in peace"

The Mauler twins looked at him as if he were stupid and began laughing uncontrollably.

"Arrogant brat! You have no idea who you're dealing with! With the two of us and our steel army, no name hero can stop us this time!"

So it would be the hard way then. Mark clenched his fists; the Mauler twins were tough from what he remembered from the show. They would be perfect to test how strong he had become.

Silence reigned for a fraction of a second, then hundreds of laser beams rained down on him from all directions.

Unlike bullets, laser projectiles were much faster, pure energy that disintegrated everything in their path. Mark struggled to maneuver through them.

Their quantity, speed, and strength might have vaporized any other person, but Mark had been hit harder. Even as dozens of impacts struck his body, it didn't make him flinch at all.

His hand shot out like a blade, his palm cutting through any robot in its path as he easily made his way toward his target.

"Oh shit!" one of the Mauler twins said, but before he could prepare himself, Mark's fist struck him in the face.

Blood splattered as his nose broke, and his body was sent flying, crashing and crushing dozens of his soldiers.

Mark hurried to the next Mauler, but this one had already prepared himself. He aimed a large weapon that had been in his arms directly at Mark's face.

A beam of crimson light the size of a car shot out at full force. Mark crossed his arms in front of him and felt the extreme heat burning parts of his suit and even irritating the skin on his arms.

His body was sent back dozens of meters, crashing into an abandoned bus. The vehicle then exploded, engulfing Mark in a cloud of smoke.

The Mauler who fired looked at the scene with a smile, which quickly disappeared when Mark shot out of the smoke at full speed.

Controlling his army, hundreds of robots launched themselves in Mark's path to block him.

Mark clenched his fist, ready to carve his way through the endless wave of machines, but before he could do so, a pink energy field extended like a wall of dozens of meters, blocking the robots.

He looked up at the sky and couldn't help but look for a second time.

the program was shit, or did this universe really have some strange rules about people's attractiveness?

Whatever the answer was he wasn't complaining, he appreciated the view

Atom Eve gracefully descended from the sky and looked at the Mauler twin still standing with clear anger.

"I thought you two had learned your lesson. You should have stayed in prison"

From the left, riding his flying motorcycle-like vehicle, Robot arrived at full speed. He leaped into the air, and his vehicle crashed into a dozen robots, causing them to explode.

Mark didn't even have to look to know that Dupli-Kate and Rex Splode had also arrived.

'This isn't supposed to happen' Mark thought, but then again, nothing that was supposed to happen was happening.

The more different things continued to happen, the more his half-baked plans self-destructed.

"Seriously?! The Teen Team? Where are the Guardians of the Globe?!" The Mauler who had been punched by Mark returned to his twin's side, his face bruised and a look of disgust in his eyes.

"Dealing with more important matters than a couple of idiots" Rex shouted.

In response, a dozen laser beams were fired at him, which, fortunately for him, were blocked by a pink energy field.

"I've found the frequency they're using to command their army. I need a few minutes before I can shut them all down" Robot said, and his team members nodded in understanding.

Mark approached them, shaking the dust off his body.

"If you need someone to cover you, I can help" he said, offering the warmest smile he could muster.

Robot looked at him for a moment before nodding.

"I accept your offer"

The Mauler twins, of course, wouldn't just stand by while they discussed how to defeat them. Both of them withdrew further into their army, beginning to plan an escape route.

The one with the broken nose looked at Invincible with clear resentment and snatched the giant weapon from his brother.

"Hey!" He didn't care about his annoyance.

"You command the robots; I'll take care of these idiots" Without giving him time to object, he jumped into the fray about to begin.

The remaining twin frowned at his brother's back and sighed.

"As expected of a clone, only an idiot rushes to get beaten up"

.

Mark introduced himself to the team as Invincible, and they also told him their names, although he already knew them.

Soon they were ready, and the robots began to charge at them.

The laser beams were easily blocked by Atom Eve and her shields, Rex and Dupli-Kate took care of any robots that got too close, and Mark launched himself directly at the Mauler twin running towards them.

His body easily cut through the army of robots, and he saw the Mauler charging that giant weapon, ready to shoot at him, but this time Mark wasn't caught off guard.

When the car-sized beam of light fired, Mark easily dodged underneath it, his blurred figure arriving in front of the Mauler, ready to strike again.

The Mauler smirked, his fist already prepared halfway, anticipating Mark's trajectory.

Mark saw this, and his own fist shot out. Then both blows met each other, and the air exploded. There seemed to be a moment of pause where neither prevailed over the other, then the Mauler's arm twisted in a way that it was clear his bones broke and flesh exploded into pieces.

"Arghh!!" The Mauler screamed, seeing his now useless arm.

Mark stepped forward, his knee hitting his stomach, knocking all the air out of his lungs. Then his hand grabbed his head and slammed it into the ground, making the whole place shake slightly.

"Didn't I tell you before? I'm invincible" Mark taunted him, watching the Mauler writhe on the ground. He couldn't help but mock him. Having so much power, being so strong, was amazing. His amusement lasted only a moment before his body was bathed in laser beams.

He had to dodge and step back a bit, looking at the still huge army in front of him, clicked his tongue. He had gotten distracted, intoxicated by his success. He should remind himself more often that his father was still punching him around like a punching bag.

'You're only cocky when you're not losing' he thought. He needed to get his feet back on the ground. If he got too arrogant, he'd end up dead from some stupidity.

He soon returned to the fray, helping the Teen Team. Though they were numerous, the robots weren't a big problem in themselves, so they soon found a comfortable rhythm.

Then, Robot raised his arm, and invisible waves spread everywhere. One by one, the robots seemed to short-circuit and began to fall motionless.

"It's done"

Mark scanned the battlefield, looking for the remaining twin but not seeing him.

"I think the other one escaped" he said to Robot.

"Don't worry, I managed to interfere with his control device, and now I can track him" Robot replied.

Mark nodded. A genius was a genius, he supposed.

The other team members approached, and Rex slapped Mark's shoulder with a smile on his face.

"That was amazing, buddy! You made that Mauler eat dirt, literally"

"Good job" Atom Eve added.

Mark nodded. "You guys did great too. I couldn't have finished this so easily on my own" It was a lie. If he had decided to use the Speed Force, even if it was just for 30 seconds, it was more than enough to make his way through the army, knock out the Mauler twins, and take the control device from their hands.

While secretly practicing, he had simply measured how much his speed increased when he used his connection to the Speed Force. In simple numbers, it was three, almost four times faster.

Which might not seem like much, but it has to be considered he could easily move dozens of times the speed of sound without using the Speed Force.

and that increase would grow as his connection and experience with the Speed Force strengthened.

"We can discuss thanks later; we need to help with cleanup and rescue. Many civilians were affected by this" Robot said, and everyone agreed.

Mark decided to help a bit by lifting debris and moving small piles of robots to a place where they wouldn't be too much of a hindrance.

With everything said and done, it was time to go home. His suit was a mess, and he needed to take a shower.

"Thanks again for the help in this operation, Invincible. I'd like a way to stay in touch with you for future collaborations" Mark shook hands with Robot and nodded, giving him his cell phone number.

A different one than he usually used. After all, it would be unprofessional to simply use his civilian number, wouldn't it?

"If you ever need help, don't hesitate to call me" Mark bid farewell to everyone and headed home; he still had things to do.

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With care not to be seen, Mark landed in his backyard, stretched his arms, and looked at the sun about to set on the horizon. It seemed like it had been a busy day.

He entered the kitchen of the house and saw his parents at the dining table, looking somewhat serious.

He frowned and asked directly "Why the long faces?"

His father looked at him, his eyes containing different emotions difficult to explain, then sighed and said something Mark didn't expect to hear.

"The Guardians of the Globe are dead" Mark froze, blinked in confusion, and looked at Nolan.

The Guardians were dead? His shock wasn't because the news was unexpected.

No, his astonishment was because if that was true and the Guardians were dead, it meant his father must have killed them. But if that was the case, then why was he sitting in front of him without a scratch at all?

Mark's demeanor was taken as a natural shock by his parents. Nolan sighed and continued speaking.

"Their funeral is in a few days. Until then, only a few know about this. I know I don't have to tell you, but don't say anything until then, okay?"

Mark nodded somewhat distractedly.

"Sure, I... I'll go take a shower." He left without saying more, Nolan watching his retreating back with a furrowed brow.

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Mark felt the water washing over his body, looked at his reflection in the puddle under his feet, and couldn't help but want to curse.

Over and over again! Things changed without him being able to do anything to stop it. What happened?! What was the turning point? What changed?

He shook his head; it didn't matter anymore. Any plan, any prediction, any future knowledge he thought he had, it didn't matter.

No, from now on, he had to adapt, take what he thought he knew with a grain of salt, and not rush.

He felt his shoulders heavier and felt a headache threatening to come on. He really needed to relax. Since he arrived in this world, he had been doing nothing but training, thinking of plans, thinking of the future, thinking of surviving.

What was the point of a life like that?

He had to start thinking about living.

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Note:

I said I wouldn't release another chapter soon, but while I was reading the Invincible comic, while I was in the bathroom, this idea of the robot army came to me. For those who don't know, in the comics, Mark somehow interrupts this plan of the Mauler twins, and that's where he meets the Teen Team.

Well, in this story, Mark didn't interrupt the Mauler twins, so they managed to have their robot army, but still got their butts kicked.

So, I couldn't sleep without writing this, but to get to this, I first had to write what came before, so I ended up with a complete chapter of 5,000 words...

What did you think?