Gramishthral, Sector 2815
Calliope Jordan skidded across the rough tiles to the base of the throne dais. Her hands and feet were shackled, her Green Lantern power ring in the possession of one of the grey-skinned, four-armed Branx warriors who’d ambushed her as she’d come to investigate the silence coming the small planet of Gramishthral. Two Branx grabbed her and held her up on her knees.
“A Green Lantern is never a good sign,” grunted a deep voice. Calliope looked up to see a Khund waltzing down the stairs to her.
“Who are you?”
A rocky fist cracked her across the head. “Speak when told!” barked the Branx.
The Khund held his hand out and Calliope’s ring was placed into his purple palm. “Why are you here?”
Calliope studied his alien face. “This is my sector, I belong here. You, Khund, are a long way from home.”
“RUDENESS!” The other Branx shouted as he clipped her across the back of the head.
The Khund smiled. “And you’re a long way from Oa. But now I have your ring, I don’t need you. Execute her!”
“WAIT!” Calliope shouted. “Whoa! Slow down! You’re not going to tell me who you are and your grand plan? My mother told me most galactic conquerors did that. Must mean you’re not in the same league of Despero or Kanjar Ro.”
“THOSE PINK SKINNED SNOT LICKERS! THEY ARE NOT IN THE SAME CLASS AS ORGMUL THE MIGHTY!” The Khund roared, the Branx warriors began chanting his name.
“So Mighty Orgmul; first Gramishthral, then the universe?” Calliope inquired.
“My mighty war machine, that I have enslaved the Gramishthralians to build, will make the universe kiss my heel. Bend to my will! BOW IN MY PRESENCE! FOR I AM…”
“ORGMUL! ORGMUL! ORGMUL!” The army of Branx chanted.
Calliope stood up, casually snapping the chains around her wrists. “That’s all I needed to know.”
“On your knees!” The Branx warrior beside her used all four hands to force down on her, as did his fellow guard. Calliope moved slightly, like she’d been wearing a heavy backpack for quite some time.
“The only reason I LET you touch me was I didn’t know what was going on, now I do. Now get your dirty rock paws off me!” In a display of strength, she threw one Branx warrior into the air, then flipped the other over her shoulder onto the floor.
“But, but I have your ring?” Omul roared in confusion. “You are powerless.”
“I am the daughter of Diana of Themyscria, I am NEVER powerless!”
“I see you have brought me a visitor, Calliope Jordan of Sector 2815,” boomed Voz, the warden of the Sciencells located deep below the Green Lantern headquarters on Oa. “And who is your purple friend?”
“Voz, this is Orgmul the Mighty. Khundian trouble maker who organised a military coup of the planet Gramishthral,” Calliope said as she floated Orgmul into a cell, surrounded by a field of green energy from her ring. “I made the bubble extra thick purely to drown out the sound of his complaining. He’s quite strong.”
“Welcome Orgmul the Mighty,” Voz waved as the cell door shut behind him. “Just him?”
“His army of Branx are essentially lost children, so I placed them on Phentan’yl near Eniphorme V,” Calliope smiled.
“The pleasure moon. Interesting punishment.” Voz nodded as he tapped onto his hovering console. “Seems you are wanted by the Guardians.”
Calliope enveloped herself in a green bubble and took to the sky, heading to the council chambers of the Guardians of the Universe.
Perhaps you shouldn't say they hand out Green Lantern rings like crackerjacks," Calliope said defiantly, folding her arms as Guy Gardner peeled himself out of the wall of the Watchtower. The ageing former Green Lantern, now wielder of a Blue Lantern ring, groaned in a combination of age and pain.
"You punch like your father," Guy sneered as he used the Blue Ring to make some sexy blue nurse constructs to help him stand upright.
"Did Guy ever tell you about the time that Batman knocked him out cold with one punch?" Dinah Queen asked as she entered the room. The matriarch of the Queen family was an impressive figure in her trademark black. "He always did like letting his mouth lead the way. But that young lady, is no reason to hit people. Apologise."
Calliope glared at her godmother. "Aunt Dinah!"
Dinah locked eyes on her goddaughter; a stare that Oliver Queen knew all too well along with most members of the JLA who'd challenged her. Calliope threw her head back and sighed. "Sorry! Jeez!"
"How is outer space?" Dinah asked warmly as she gave her a hug, and Guy a slight scowl.
"It's okay," Calliope shrugged. "Would rather be in this sector."
"We're kinda full of GL's!" Guy laughed. "Your dad, Kyle, Alan, Jade, Barbara, John..."
"By Hera..." Calliope muttered as she began to cross the room only to have Dinah swing her back around gently in the opposite direction.
"He's a dirty old Vuldarian living in the past," Dinah said firmly. "You are here for other things."
"...yes, Aunt Dinah."
"Guy! Stay!" Dinah ordered as they got into the lift.
"Good dog," Calliope added as the doors shut. "How's Lorelai?"
Dinah smiled as she thought about her youngest. "She's calling herself Arsenal now, after Roy. I believe she's dating some girl, because she thinks that her having a lesbian relationship will annoy me. I'm really just glad she isn't dating Zelman Fate anymore."
"Dr Fate and Zatana's son?"
"He always struck me as too strange," Dinah said as the lift doors opened to the massive conference hall that had a perfect view of the Earth below. It was breath taking, even though Calliope saw it when she travelled back home, seeing it without the green tint of a Green Lantern bubble made her smile. “Are you ready?”
“Honestly, I’m a bit nervous,” Calliope said. “She’s been gone for three years.”
“Your mother is one of the finest people I’ve ever met,” Dinah said. “She saved the world from Darkseid singlehandedly by agreeing to be Earth’s ambassador on Apokolips. Diana has sacrificed a lot.”
“Yeah,” Calliope sighed as she looked down at the gathering of heroes below who had come to welcome Diana home from her tenure on what essentially was a hell planet.
“Callie.” The Green Lantern of Sector 2815 turned to the very familiar voice and threw her arms around her father.
“Hi dad!” Calliope fought back tears of joy. Between her job and his job, they managed to catch up once or twice a year; and today was especially hard because both hadn’t seen nor heard from Diana for an age.
“Missed you,” Hal whispered into her ear, a tear sneaking out from under his Yellow Lantern mask.
“Still got yellow fever?” Calliope said as she kissed his cheek. “You look better in green.”
Hal released his daughter and pulled his green ring from his belt pouch. “I still have it, for emergencies.”
“Hal,” Dinah said flatly, folding her arms.
“Dinah,” Hal nodded at her. “How is…”
Black Canary spun on her heels and headed off towards Connor Kent and his partner Blackfire.
“She holds a grudge well,” Hal stated. “How are you? What’s happening with you?”
Calliope smiled at her father. “Busy. Stopped a rebellion Gramisthral, locked Dev-Em in the Phantom Zone, shut a wormhole from the 40th Century, y’know Green Lantern stuff. You?”
Hal Jordan beamed with pride at his daughter’s exploits. “Wow! I…”
PING! PING! PING! The room erupted in sound and light as the Boom Tube from Apokolips. Hal and Calliope held hands as the tunnel solidified and from the light emerged Wonder Woman.
“Mom?” Calliope looked at her mother in confusion. Gone was the red, blue and white outfit made of stars replaced by a harsh uniform of black and gold complete with a nightmarish ebony cloak and a patch over her left eye; her trademark tiara replaced with a crown.
“Diana?” Hal was aghast at the sight of his wife.
Diana looked at the gathering, almost a look of disgust on her face, as she thrust her hand back to take the hand of Grayven, Darkseid’s youngest son, who in turn was holding the hand of a small boy.
“What the hell is going on?” Hal snapped, the nimbus of yellow flared up around him as he headed for the stage.