Who’s the Arrowest of Them All?
Star City’s newest heroine, Queen Arrow, is a beauty queen with a bow. Can Arrowette manage to find some way to get along with her long enough to keep the Archer and the Dart from killing them both?
Arrowette was miffed. Her friend Flare was away with family business, and she was so bored with doing her patrol solo. She felt good about meeting new heroic friends like Star Sapphire, Coral, and Black Canary, but they weren’t around, either, and the blonde teenager was feeling isolated and bored. (*)
[(*) Editor’s note: See Arrowette: Legacies.]
She finally caught a police bulletin about a robbery at some jewelry store in the heart of Star City, so she raced down there in search of excitement. “With my luck, the police will have bagged him before I even get there!” she pouted.
Luck was with the teen heroine, since she did beat the police to the crime scene and arrive in time to see the fleeing felon. This guy is totally lame! she mused as she spotted the costumed crook, whose black and white costume had a vague bird motif.
“Give up now, Crow, or I’ll make a pin-cushion out of you!” she said, posing defiantly with her bow ready.
“I’m Magpie, not Crow!” he sneered, and picked up his pace.
She started to pin him down with some easy archery, when a whiz sounded above her ear, and arrows sped past her blonde locks to do exactly what she had planned to do regarding Magpie. He tripped and lay stunned as several arrows pinned his boots together with a netting, and a third held him to a wall.
“Red Arrow?” she said excitedly, whirling around and expecting to finally meet Oliver Queen’s famous sidekick, who was now a member of Infinity Inc.
“You need glasses, honey, if these legs make you think of any male!” said a Southern drawl.
She saw a pretty blonde with flowing, golden hair. Her bow was drawn, and her green costume consisted of a green bra and a miniskirt with high heels.
“Who are you?” said Arrowette.
“Your predecessor and your superior, Queen Arrow,” she said. “Get used to it, little girl! A real woman’s here to steal your thunder!” She fired upward and swung off on an arrow-line just as Arrowette might have done.
“Great. First that Connor Hawke phony, and now this witch,” fumed Arrowette in anger.
“Well, first of all, she really is a predecessor to any Arrowette,” explained Max Lord at his plush office. “She first appeared awhile before that name was ever used. Queen Arrow, in a more conservative costume, of course, partnered with Oliver and Roy a couple times in the mid-1940s before disappearing. Then the first Arrowette showed up.”
“So what’s her problem, and where did she go back then?” said Arrowette. “She looked twenty-something!”
“I’ve got that info, too, since she called me recently,” said Max. “Her name is Diana Dare, and she is a wealthy debutante who took up the Queen Arrow identity in the early days of Oliver’s career. She was doing it — get this — in her sleep, until he exposed her secret to her! Diana didn’t know that she even was Queen Arrow at first. (*) She vanished shortly thereafter. She says she was abducted through time by a creep named Atoman but never saw him again. She just woke up in our time a few months ago, and we can only guess this Atoman failed to use her in whatever scheme he planned. So, like Roy, Diana is a time-lost case. She knew a time decades earlier, only to literally wake up in our time. She’s handled it remarkably well.”
[(*) Editor’s note: The Earth-One Queen Arrow, on whom the Earth-Two version is based, appeared in “The Queen Arrow,” Adventure Comics #241 (October, 1957).]
“So she’s a good gal?” asked Arrowette.
“Sure,” he said. “She just doesn’t like you for copying her style, as she sees it.”
“Well, she has no style, in my opinion!” said Arrowette, storming out.
The next day, Bonnie Jones-Carter rolled out of bed to hear an alarming announcement on her clock radio: “The dynamic new heroine Queen Arrow announced today that, in addition to sponsoring a line of sportswear, she will be challenging the younger heroine Arrowette to an archery match, with all proceeds going to charity. Tickets are on sale now.”
“What? I didn’t agree to anything like that!” she said as her mother burst through the door.
“Bonnie, what is the meaning of this?” shouted the publicity-minded mother. “You didn’t clear this photo with me! You look positively fat in that photo! Look at Queen Arrow! She’s a supermodel, for gosh sakes! How could you let her run these posters? They’re all over town, and she makes you look like… like… some pimply teen!”
“Mom, I didn’t — she–” began a sputtering Bonnie before tossing up her hands and stalking out of the room. “Fine, this Queen Arrow wants a contest? I’ll give her a real match! If the money goes to charity, then what can go wrong?”
The answer came soon enough as the day of the contest drew near, and two felons broke out of jail shortly before. They were called the Archer and the Dart.
“So that brat, Arrowette, seeks to show she is the best archer, huh?” said the Archer, alias Connor Hawke. “We have a say in that. Plus, the charity money will buy you a new wardrobe, my pet!”
Dart kissed him and said, “You know it, baby!”
Bonnie fired bullseye after bullseye, and the crowd cheered louder with every salvo. Her mother watched nervously and critically from the stands.
“That girl!” she fumed. “Just look at her hair! She’ll never learn.”
The beautiful Queen Arrow matched her shot for shot, and her crowd-pleasing outfit seemed to get smaller every time she appeared in public.
She’s good. Her ego and her cover-girl attitude irritate me, but I can’t deny she can use that bow, thought Bonnie.
After several tie-breakers failed to settle the issue of who was the arrowest of them all, Queen Arrow flounced out on the stage and posed like a swimsuit model for Sports Illustrated.
“I guess we’ll never know just who is the best, and since little Smurfette… I mean Arrowette is still growing, let’s just call it a draw and give the little girl time for rest,” she said tauntingly. “After all, it’s a school night!”
Arrowette frowned. “Smurfette? What a witch!”
Then a loud voice rang out, “The box office is being robbed!”
Arrowette ran forward to see what was up, and to her annoyance, Queen Arrow followed and even outdistanced her. Just because she has legs the length of Christie Brinkley is no excuse for her to show off! she mused.
In the box office, two costumed figures helped themselves to the money. “Charity does begin at home,” laughed the Dart in her white fluffy miniskirt and white sports bra.
Her green-suited hubby, Connor Hawke, smiled at the sight of the approaching Queen Arrow. “Well, well, if it isn’t the Barbie doll of the archery world — and the soon-to-be-late Arrowette!” he sneered.
The Archer fired rapidly, and the agile Arrowette dropped to the ground and swung out her bow to trip Queen Arrow. She fell in the mud, but the arrows soared just over her blonde curls.
“Thanks sooo much!” she said in an icy tone.
Arrowette fired a flare arrow that brightened the night sky with the hope of blinding her enemies.
“Not so easy, babe,” said Dart. “Contacts!” she said languidly.
The red darts she took her name from clipped down around Queen Arrow and Arrowette, and the narcotic tips sent them both to sleep.
Bonnie awoke to find herself hanging upside-down from a rooftop beam over a glass tank full of swimming white sharks. Her fellow archer Queen Arrow was across the room, also chained, but to a wheel.
“Ah, ladies! Welcome,” said Connor Hawke. “This little wheel is set to spin the leggy Queen until she literally dashes her brainless head open as it lowers with each spin. And you, my teen dream, will be shark food when the chains holding you break!”
“Oh, and girls, he is really the best Archer of them all!” laughed Dart. The criminal couple hugged, and Connor scooped up his wife and carried her giggling form away.
“Queen! Diana! Can you hear me?” whispered Arrowette.
“Yes! I hear you! This whole mess is your fault. If I’d been alone, I would have–”
“You would have been a Vogue version of a pin-cushion, and you know it!” interrupted Bonnie.
Queen Arrow gasped as the wheel began to spin.
Arrowette felt her chains drop lower, too, and her hair dropped down to touch the top of the water tank. Got to think, she mused, tugging on the chains; as she did, a fold loosed and dropped her lower. “Glub!” she gasped. Her head broke the water, and she almost panicked.
The end of the chain may not help me, but it’s my only chance, she thought, then prayed silently and took a deadly risk. With a mighty tug and skillful aim, she ripped free the end of her chain. She plunged helplessly into the tank, but as she hoped, the loose end soared out as she aimed and wedged itself under the spinning wheel that held the shapely Diana Dare.
The wheel hit the metal chain, and with a wrench tore it free from the wall as its orbit was forcefully blocked. Queen Arrow saw her chance and rolled free just as it tore itself apart. She fired from her bow, which lay nearby, and shattered Arrowette’s tank. A few more arrows tranquilized the gasping sharks. The blonde bombshell pulled Arrowette to freedom and thanked her for her timely save.
“OK, I’ve been a real witch,” said a sincere Queen Arrow. “You just saved my life. I was helpless. I admit you are the best.”
“Thanks! Now let’s get the happy couple,” said Arrowette.
They ran through the old building to find the criminal pair happily kissing. “What the–?” cried Dart as the Archer quickly pushed his bride off his lap.
Queen Arrow fired a blunt-headed arrow that slammed into Dart’s pert little chin and knocked her cold. A second arrow netted her stunned form, and Queen Arrow tied her up easily. “Hate you, love your skirt,” she teased.
Meanwhile, the Archer had pinned Arrowette down with a rain of trick arrows. “Sooner or later, I’ll hit you, brat!” yelled Hawke.
“Eat arrows!” snapped Bonnie as she fire upward over his head. The buzz-saw-arrow brought timber crashing down to disarm Hawke. Bonnie fired again, and her handcuff arrow trapped the Archer’s hands. “Not such a smart mouth without your bow!” said Arrowette as she leaped forward and belted Hawke across the mouth. He kicked at her, but she danced lithely up and back, swinging the bow to catch him in his smug face.
Queen Arrow smiled. “Well done!”
Arrowette curtseyed and said, “Thank you, Your Majesty!”
Later, as the press and police congratulated them on the capture of the crime couple, Arrowette fumed as Queen Arrow stepped deliberately in front of her for most photos and winked to the photographers, who gladly gave the gorgeous woman the best angles.
Some people never learn! thought Arrowette.