Elsewhere, while Houston had been liberated, the city and the surrounding areas had been devastated by the war. In addition, swarms of antrons and reptovors from subspace continued to ravage the countryside. As a result, the entire state of Texas was declared a Forbidden Zone, its government shut down and its governor executed. Okay, no, the governor wasn't really executed. He had already disappeared in a hornetroid attack early on.
So anyway, the team did what they could to get things working again, including trying to get some back pay out of Captain Scrappy. While they were setting up the rabbit ears, they caught a broadcast about a new Interlocking Technologies-managed team called the North Coast Guardians. This team consisted of a strangely familiar tech-using character called Sideshow who wore face paint instead of a mask, a woman called Scorpio who wore a glowing opal on her forehead and used a tech-based tail, a woman called Jellyfish who was able to assume an amoeboid form, a man with insect-styled tech called Scarab, and the rogue hero they had encountered in Dimension Q, Blue Shift.
Later, after the deal had gone through, Caravel noticed rising numbers of paranormal incidents with "demons" of a few recurring types, and began to suspect that they were actually aliens. There was also the "Digit 6" political group, which... I'm not going to explain all that here.
Caravel was about to say more, but then our heroes decided that this was a good opportunity to wrangle funding for their now-orphaned enterprise. Using heroic guilt-trips, heroic blackmail, and various other heroic coercion methods, they managed to secure support for their base expenses, regular salaries, and the money Caravel made selling the tablet. Caravel also agreed to help establish The Scrap Pile as a legal business entity.
Caravel, revealing that, "I’m something of a mystic myself," said that he believed something was going on at the Weatherhead Building in an abandoned section of Lightfoot Island. The bizarrely twisted building had been popular with occult practitioners ever since it was abandoned in 2001.
They found the building guarded by brutish aliens with four arms, one pair of which bore fearsome claws. After the team defeated one of the aliens, Disco was able to win over the other with a light show and convince it to take him to its leader.
Subduing and/or brainwashing these two, the Scrap Pile discovered that "the real show" was happening over at the Chandra Hill Observatory. There, Nebulon ("Ulysses Nebul") was planning to summon an ancient god called Shuma-Gorath to take possession of the planet, as promised by the jade tablet.
As they approached Chandra Hill, they could see shadowy forms flitting out from the telescope lens. While Torpedo walked directly into the lobby and then shifted to lava form when attacked, the others made their way up to the telescope and started working on destroying the lens, which turned out to be a great deal tougher than regular non-demon-summoning glass.
Magi, Land Shark, and Disco destroyed the lens fairly quickly and joined the fight. Eventually, Land Shark got his hands on the tablet and smashed it. The ground shook. The portal started to flicker and fluctuate erratically. Nebulon screamed as Shuma-Gorath's six tentacles reached through the shattered gateway and took hold, dragging him through.
The portal snapped shut and vanished. Chondu's various pieces all fell apart, leaving his lifeless head rolling around on the floor. The same thing happened to the man-headed gorilla. The bison head disappeared, leaving a headless corpse behind.