Themes vs. Concepts on CV

A moderator told me today of a change to the wiki, and I had some concerns about it that I took to @wcarle in PM. He asked me to put it up to the forums for discussion. This is the PM I sent him, with only minor edits:

Hi. It's just been brought to my attention that a "Themes" option on the Volume pages is going to replace many of the "Concept" pages. I was told that stuff like genres and items like "Trade Paperback" (TPB) will be gone from the Concepts.

I don't edit as much as someone like Pikahyper (easiest example). In fact, my current focus is on two large volumes- Gwandanaland Comics and Classic Comics Library. Both are a series of trade paperbacks, and I've used that Concept throughout (or will as I add the solicitation info to each). Each TPB in the series could be a different genre, so marking each with "Western, Space Opera, Horror, Humor" etc. has been essential. If I can now only add that on the Volume page, the info is going to get muddy real quick.

For someone who adds as many issues a year (and to various volumes) as Pikahyper does, I can see that adding a concept only once to the Volume page would be very convenient. As an additional tool, I think it's great, but as a replacement for the Concept pages, I don't. The convenience of Themes only serves the wiki-editor. It doesn't serve the wiki-user.

A wiki is for both the seasoned reader refreshing their memory, and for that little kid that's just learning about this stuff. If the Concept pages go away in favor of Themes, a lot of info will be lost to the wiki-user. What is a Trade Paperback? What does Digital Only mean? What is LGBTQ? What is Space Opera? All of this info goes away without the Concept pages, and for a wiki, it should really be defined.

If this change is not already set in stone as a replacement, please reconsider it as only an additional tool. I think it's very important to the overall user friendliness of the wiki.

***

Later, further discussion with the moderator brought up some other points:

Descriptions of the themes could be added to the theme page, so that the definition is not lost. The mod was talking about brief descriptions, which would disallow any kind of history being laid out.

In playing with the Themes option a bit, I found that it's set up like to be a listing of associated volumes (not issues), and as was pointed out to me, there are a number of search tools in the right column of the Themes page to narrow down the search. I found that those search tools do work, so okay, it's kind of a reformatting of what is available on a Concept page.

As the mod pointed out, a Concept page shows associated Issues, and the Theme page shows associated Volumes. The Concept listing shows the volumes with the highest number of associated issues first, and works down to the volumes with only one associated issue. This cannot be changed, and the mod thinks that's useless. I like that function, so I wouldn't say "useless," but it's certainly limited. So why can't the search options on the Theme pages also be made available on the Concept pages? (Or on all pages, for that matter?)

Finally, using Trade Paperback as an example, the mod said: if you have ten volumes with ten issues each, and all of the issues are trade paperbacks, then would you rather associate it ten times (with Themes on the volume page), or one hundred times (with Concepts on the issue page)? The mod sees the ten as easier. I say why not 110 associations- ten on Themes and ten on Concepts? The purpose of the wiki is to make info available, and having it cross-referenced in two different ways can only make that info easier to find. Why not have both?

***

Also, I have a side concern: I make a lot of lists, and some of them have a single Concept as the entire list- serving as a placeholder in most cases- until I can edit more items onto the list. If the Concept is deleted in favor of a Theme, is my list going to be empty, or will it disappear? If it disappears, this means I lose the info currently in the list's text space (at the top of the list). Is that going to happen? The mod wasn't sure, and I forgot to ask wcarle.

***

So, okay, now it's out to the CV community. What do you think? Please chime in with your thoughts on this.

Thanks for reading. -cb

11 Comments

CCC #82 - Voting Thread

Hey, all! It was Batkevin74's turn to pick the theme this time, and he delegated the pick to his daughter, Emma! So, Emma wanted a dragon married to a monkey named Swingy-Dingy, and for them to have adventures with fairies and stuff. We got a few interesting entries, and now it's time to vote on them. To recap, the rules were:

  • There’s a monkey called Swingy-Dingy who’s the main character
  • Swingy-Dingy either marries or is married to a dragon
  • There’s an adventure

The voting rules:

  • READ the stories, PICK your favorite one, and CAST your VOTE!
  • If you wrote, you should vote! (It's just sporting)
  • No voting for yourself. (Also sporting)
  • Batkevin's vote is actually going to come from Emma, after he reads her the stories.
  • This vote is going to be two weeks, ending this on Valentine's Day. The deadline is Thursday, February 14, 2019 @11:59pm New York time. (click the link if you're unsure)
  • Remember: All are welcome to vote, and the winner gets to pick the next contest.

The stories:

Stumpy49er - Swing Dingy and the Dragons of Mount Ploom

Swing Dingy and the Dragons of Mount Ploom

Swingy Dingy, the cutest, pink monkey girl in the land of Auria floated on her favorite flower cloud, which she named Beddy.

"Fly higher, Beddy." Swingy Dingy yelled. "I want to see the peaks of Mount Ploom."

"Higher still?" Beddy asked nervously.

"Yes, nervous Nelly. Go Higher!" she yelled louder.

Beddy flew up towards the gargantuan, floral mountain which floated in the sky and bloomed multiple colors.

Sapphire butterflies flew through the air, while jade grasshoppers jumped to greet them. A mountainous elk troll walked upside down under the mountain, waving to the newcomers.

Swingy Dingy waved back.

"It's so beautiful here." she said. "Everyone is so nice."

Just then, a gorgeous, blonde dragon woman flew by her so closely, the updraft made Beddy sway, knocking Swingy Dingy off.

"Oh no!" she screamed as she fell through the air.

"Oh my, what did I do this time. So clumsy." the dragon said to herself.

"It's okay, mom." A young voice said from behind her. "I'm on it."

A young dragon boy of teal scale flew down towards the plummeting monkey girl.

Swingy DIngy felt more excited than scared as she fell. She planned on grabbing some tree vines on her way down and swinging her way out of this predicament.

She looked up towards Mount Ploom and saw something that made her blush.

A very handsome dragon boy was coming to her rescue.

**

to be continued...

4donkeyjohnson - (untitled)

Swingy Dingy was a purple monkey who liked to eat bees. one day while bee hunting she saw the mst beautigul thing she'd ever seen. A dragon. It was long gold and spiky and eating bees. She fell instantly in love. swingy dingy approached the dragon carefuly and said hullo.

Hello the dragomn replied. swingy dingys heart wnet a flutter as did the dragon as he looked at her. it was love at first dight foir him also

do you like bees? the dragon asked

oh yes

And so began a wonderful life of the mokey and the dragon. they got married and lived on a honey farm happily ever after

the end

Batkevin74 - The Tale of Swingy-Dingy

The Tale of Swingy-Dingy

Swingy-Dingy was a unique monkey. She had soft pink fur, purple nails, and a golden tip on the end of her tail. Her eyes were sparkly blue, and she wore a rainbow bow in her hair. She lived in an enchanted jungle in a hidden valley on a mystical island.

Swingy-Dingy lived in a hut made of books that sat in the fork of a giant eucalyptus tree. In the next tree over lived her parents Wingy-Dingy & Lingy-Dingy and in the tree across lived her brother Blingy-Dingy. One tree over, there lived her cousin Mingy-Dingy.

One day, Swingy-Dingy went down to the water hole in the middle of the island. When she got there, she saw something she’d never seen before. It was tall, taller than the tallest tree and it was wide, wider than two elephants. It was red, scaly and had wings like a bat on its back.

“What is that?” Swingy-Dingy asked her cousin Mingy-Dingy who swung in beside her to get a drink.

“It might be a lizard?” Mingy-Dingy shrugged. “I like your bow today Swingy-Dingy.”

“Thanks. I like your bracelet.”

Swingy-Dingy watched the big red creature drink and decided she needed to find out who and what it was. Swingy-Dingy bounded over and stood nearby waiting until it had finished drinking.

“Hi!” Swingy-Dingy said cheerfully.

“Um, hola,” the creature replied as a torrent of water dropped off its chin.

“My name is Swingy-Dingy and I’m a monkey. Who are you?”

The big creature sat up, wiped its mouth and smiled. “My name is Ricardo Eduardo Benito

Enrique Logroño. And I, am a dragon.”

“Ricardo Eduardo Benito Enrique Logroño,” Swingy-Dingy repeated. “You have a lovely accent, where are you from?”

“I come from a far away magical place known as Spain. I like your golden tipped tail, us dragons like gold.”

And so Swingy-Dingy and Ricardo chatted the day away and slowly but surely fell in love.

__

“Mum, Dad, this is Ricardo Eduardo Benito Enrique Logroño,” Swingy-Dingy introduced the dragon to her parents. Wingy-Dingy & Lingy-Dingy were a bit surprised to see a giant red creature peering into their house who was gingerly holding their daughter’s hand by one of his talons.

“Nice to meet you,” said Wingy-Dingy waving at the dragon.

“We are going to get married!” Swingy-Dingy said excitedly.

“Hmmm” Lingy-Dingy grunted. “How long have you known this…dragon?”

“All afternoon,” Swingy-Dingy said with a smile.

Wingy-Dingy & Lingy-Dingy looked at each other. “Well if you are going to get married, you have to go on a quest.”

“Quest?” Swingy-Dingy and Ricardo said together.

“You will have to retrieve three things,” Lingy-Dingy told them. “Flowers from the top of Mount Smelly for the ceremony. A gold nugget from the bottom of the Bottomless Pit to make a ring. And the invisible music from…”

“Your father is just joking,” Wingy-Dingy interrupted as she saw the puzzled looks on their faces. “But at the very least you should go on an adventure, get to know each other before you rush off to get married.”

“Phew” exhaled Ricardo, smoke rings shooting out his nose.

Suddenly the sky darkened, like a huge disc had been put in front of the sun. Everyone looked up to see a massive robotic duck hovering in the sky.

“MY NAME IS SANDRA QUACKENBACK! THIS ISLAND IS NOW MINE!” She roared in a huge metallic voice that shook the air.

“What is going on?” Swingy-Dingy shrieked grabbing Ricardo’s talon.

From above came dozens oblong metal balls dropping like rain.

“EGGS!” Wingy-Dingy screamed.

CHOOM! CHOOM! The eggs hit the ground but when one came near a creature, it split open and captured them and shot BACK up to massive metal duck above. Lingy-Dingy shoved his wife out of the way but was taken instead!

“DAD!” Swingy-Dingy shouted and she jumped up to attempt to save him, but Ricardo swung her up onto his back. Then her mum, Wingy-Dingy, was captured.

“MUM!”

“We must go!” Ricardo said and flew zig zaggedly through the metal storm pounding the island. Swingy-Dingy held his scales tight as they flew off to safety.

_

After a few days of evading the eggs, Ricardo and Swingy-Dingy were safe on the far end of the island, hidden in a secret lagoon.

“We’ve got to save my parents,” Swingy-Dingy fretted as she clasped her tail.

“We shall,” Ricardo said. “But how?”

“What do we know about robots?”

Ricardo shrugged. “Not much.”

“I know they’re metal. And metal rusts. We need water.”

“Okay,” said Ricardo. “And then what?”

Swingy-Dingy shrugged. “I don’t know. But I can’t hide here for much longer. How much water can you swallow?”

“Let’s find out,” Ricardo smiled.

_

Lingy-Dingy, Wingy-Dingy, Blingy-Dingy, Mingy-Dingy, and a dozen other Dingy’s along with other creatures all sat in cages inside the belly of the giant robotic duck. They were scared, but relatively safe. Several robotic ducks with laser eyes watched over them.

_

Ricardo flew straight up like a rocket to the face of the giant duck and spat a stream of super-heated water into its face. It bounced off like literally water of a duck’s back, only it was its face.

“It’s not working,” Ricardo panted.

“I have an I idea!” Swingy-Dingy spun her golden tipped tail and tossed it, the tip shattered the eye glass and Swingy-Dingy shot inside the metal beast. Several robotic ducks with laser eyes scrambled to stop her, but she was a monkey on a mission. She flipped and spun and bounced and soon made short work of them.

“Where are my parents?” she yelled at one of the guards. The duck pointed to a large metal door. Swingy-Dingy pushed the door open only to be confronted by…

“Sandra Quackenback?” Swingy-Dingy growled at the duck-woman standing before her. She had sleek white feathers, a red bill, and was holding a stick that pulsed with electricity. “Where are my parents?”

Sandra rolled her eyes. “The last golden tipped monkey. Now I can start the machine.”

“What are you talking about?”

“I need gold for my robots. You monkeys and quite a lot of you magical creatures on this island have gold in or on you. I am going to take the gold, make more robots and then take over the world.”

Swingy-Dingy looked at Sandra. “You’re a nutcase lady!”

“Perhaps,” Sandra smiled. “Now give me that tail!”

Swingy-Dingy dodged the strike from the stick, ducked between Sandra’s legs and scrambled into the hold where all the creatures were. Sandra chased after her swinging her stick.

“Get back here!” screamed Sandra.

Swingy-Dingy danced and jumped about and saw a large red lever that said RELEASE. A plan formed in her head.

“You can catch me!” Swingy-Dingy mocked.

“Grrr!” Sandra yelled.

Swingy-Dingy flipped and pulled the lever, and the whole floor of the robot duck opened, and EVERYONE FELL OUT!

“Oh dear!” Swingy-Dingy shrieked.

“You stupid little pest!” yelped Sandra as she fell towards the ground.

Ricardo saw the robot duck open and became flying in a circle, creating a vortex. The spiral got bigger and he caught all the creatures in the updraft of this giant whirlwind.

“Hooray!” cheered Swingy-Dingy.

Ricardo lowered all the creatures safely to the ground and collapsed in a heap from the effort. Sandra Quackenback dusted herself off and suddenly came face to face with an island full of angry creatures.

“Ah, yes, let me explain,” she cowered.

“Don’t explain,” Swingy-Dingy told her. “Just go. Now!”

Sandra Quackenback gulped, pulled a gun and fired a grappling hook up to the duck. “You win this time, Swingy-Dingy.”

And so, the bad guy flew off in her duck and the island was saved. The whole island cheered and lifted Ricardo and Swingy-Dingy up on their shoulders.

“Will you marry me?” Swingy-Dingy asked Ricardo.

“I will, but how about tomorrow, I’m really tired,” Ricardo laughed.

Remember: Votes due by Thursday, February 14, 2019 @11:59pm New York time. (click the link if you're unsure)

I'm glad you're here. Thanks for reading, thanks for voting, and see you in fourteen days! -cb :^D

29 Comments

Would U Buy It #100: The Human Fly

DateWUBI # 100:View:Attached to Forum:Last Issue:
01/11/19The Human Fly(Blog) (Forum)Human Fly.WUBI #99.

We all have trade paperback (TPB) collections we'd like to see. Here's one of mine:

Proposed Title:The Human Fly
Collecting 19 Issues:
  • The Human Fly (1977) #1-19.
Covers: (click to enlarge)
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10
That's right kids- he's real!
That's right kids- he's real!
TPB Cover: The Human Fly #17
TPB Cover: The Human Fly #17

For a few years now, I've been wondering what I would do for WUBI #100. I mean... it's the hundredth issue, y'know? In comics, that usually means an epic issue, and for this issue, I think it should be the same. When it hit me today that I have yet to do a WUBI on Marvel's The Human Fly, I thought, "What could be more epic than a hero that existed in real life?!"

Well, okay, he was a stuntman- a daredevil- but that name was already taken. Believe it or not though, The Human Fly was indeed based on a real guy- one Rick Rojatt, aka The Human Fly. Which is why the comic covers carried the tagline, "The wildest super-hero ever--because he's real!"

Now, when Marvel took on this title, they already had a Human Fly- a villain whose real name was Richard Deacon. They even addressed it in the comic by having Spider-Man fight the Rojatt Human Fly, thinking that he was the Deacon Human Fly. Once that was settled, the Deacon character pretty much fell off the face of the Earth, until revived in the 2000's as just Fly.

Marvel's other Human Fly
Marvel's other Human Fly

You can read a reprint of Bill Mantlo's explanation of the character on The Human Fly page, but to sum up, he was more than a stuntman- he strove to be an inspiration. Eventually, in real life, Rojatt jumped twenty-seven school buses, breaking Evel Knievel's record of thirteen buses along with his ankle (and other injuries), and he retired from public life. As I recall, one of the later letter columns of the comic mentions that The Human Fly was going on to record a music album after his retirement from stunts, but I've never found any evidence of that album.

I think The Human Fly deserves a trade paperback simply because it was based on a real guy. That makes it a little more than just comics- it's history. A footnote maybe, but history. For the cover, I imagine Marvel would simply go with the first issue's cover, but my personal choice would be Issue #17. Rather than use the actual issue's cover this time, I used a commission by Bob Hall, found on the website for Catskill Comics. It gives a better idea of what the TPB cover would look like. I think it's as dynamic and eye-grabbing as it can be!

Would you buy it? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading.
5 Comments

Would U Buy It #99: Wild Cards

DateWUBI # 99:View:Attached to Forum:Last Issue:
01/11/19Wild Cards(Blog) (Forum)Wild Cards (1990).WUBI #98.

We all have trade paperback (TPB) collections we'd like to see. Here's one of mine:

Proposed Title:Wild Cards
Collecting 4 Issues:
  • Wild Cards (1990) #1-4.
Covers: (click to enlarge)
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10
TPB Cover: Wild Cards #1
TPB Cover: Wild Cards #1

First things first: if you've never read the Wild Cards novels, shame on you. They are hands down the best superhero prose universe you will ever read, and as far as I have ever been able to tell, they pretty much pioneered the concepts of the "common origin" and "heroes in the real world." That is: all powers come from one source, and powers with true consequences/side effects to the human body.

Yes, Marvel has had mutants way longer, but that only accounts for a segment of the powers in the Marvel Universe. Marvel later said that there was something about the human genetics that allowed for the random development of superpowers. DC made basically the same statement, but called it the metagene.

In Wild Cards, the common origin is an alien virus that becomes known as the Wild Card Virus. There are four different outcomes to the virus:

  • Black Queen - usually referred to as "drawing the Black Queen," these are the ones that die from coming in contact with the virus. 90% of those who contract the virus draw the Black Queen.
  • Jokers - Of the remaining ten percent, 9% become physically deformed or transformed in some way, like having transparent skin, becoming a human lizard, or human centipede. You get the idea.
  • Aces - The last 1% get true super powers, like being invulnerable, controlling inanimate objects, or having sonic screams- that kind of thing.
  • Deuces - Actually part of the Aces, these are the ones with some minor superpower no one wants- like only being visible from others' peripheral vision, or being able to screw a lightbulb into their elbow and making it light up.

The common origin was picked up in Smallville's exposure to kryptonite, and The Flash's particle accelerator explosion. Real world consequences/side effects for superpowers were picked up in Heroes, Alphas, and No Ordinary Family. But Wild Cards did it first.

Add to all that info that the books were edited by Game of Thrones writer George R.R. Martin, and that his name on the series has caused Wild Cards to be picked up for development for television. Much like the HBO series did for his Game of Thrones books, I think you can expect a Wild Cards TV series to increase interest in the original books. In fact, my research on Amazon shows that the original books are danged hard to find at reasonable prices. The original twelve books of the series are listed for anywhere between $20 and $200. So, would a trade paperback of the Marvel Epic imprint's 1990 four-issue Wild Cards mini-series be called for? I think it would.

I honestly cannot recall whether the series was ever collected into TPB before. I don't think it has been, but if it was, it has long since gone out of print. For the cover, I'd simply go with the first issue.

Would you buy it? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading.
2 Comments

Would U Buy It #98: 'Mazing Man

DateWUBI # 98:View:Attached to Forum:Last Issue:
01/11/19'Mazing Man(Blog) (Forum)'Mazing Man.WUBI #97.

We all have trade paperback (TPB) collections we'd like to see. Here's one of mine:

Proposed Title:'Mazing Man
Collecting 16 Issues:
  • 'Mazing Man (1986) #1-12.
  • 'Mazing Man Special (1987) #1-3.
  • Secret Origins (1986) #16.
  • Who's Who... (1985) #15 (one page).
Covers: (click to enlarge)
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10
TPB Cover: 'Mazing Man #1
TPB Cover: 'Mazing Man #1

Well, it's been a year-and-a-half since the last WUBI, so welcome back. The choice for this installment- 'Mazing Man- was inspired by @airdave's review of the first issue, Wearing Your Underwear on the Outside and Your Heart on Your Sleeve.

Every now and then, DC decides to do something that is just wacky fun, and the 1986 title 'Mazing Man was one of those decisions. Without stealing too much from Airdave's review, this series starts off with 'Mazing Man's story being introduced by his friend and fellow insane asylum alumn, Denton Fixx... who just happens to look like a dog. If that doesn't tell you everything you need to know about the tone of the series, then I don't know what else I could say.

'Mazing Man had a solid twelve-issue run from January to December, 1986. The first 'Mazing Man Special came directly afterwards in January, 1987, followed by 'Mazing Man's origin in the July, 1987 issue of Secret Origins. This was followed by January Special issues in 1988 and 1990. Just for the sake of completeness, I'd include the 'Mazing Man entry from Who's Who #15, but I imagine that page would be left out if DC ever reprinted this.

For the cover, I'm tempted to go with the (sort of) infinity cover of 'Mazing Man Special #3, but it has a different logo from the rest of the series. So, I'd simply go with 'Mazing Man #1.

Would you buy it? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading.
2 Comments

CCC #81 - Voting Thread

Creator, meet your creation
Creator, meet your creation

Hey, everyone! Time_Phantom had an interesting challenge for us this time around- to write a creator meeting (at least) one of their characters. Let's get right to it:

The voting rules:

  • READ the stories, PICK your favorite one, and CAST your VOTE!
  • If you wrote, you should vote! (It's just sporting)
  • No voting for yourself. (Also sporting)
  • This vote is going to be two weeks and two days to get us back to a Sunday deadline, and to get us past Christmas. The deadline is Sunday, December 30, 2018 @11:59pm New York time. (click the link if you're unsure)
  • Remember: All are welcome to vote, and the winner gets to pick the next contest.

The stories:

Batkevin74 - Kevin meets Scalphunter

Kevin sat at his computer looking at old fan fiction stories he’d written a few years ago. The middle-aged man with a distinct lack of shape, mongrel blonde hair and glasses like coke bottles chuckled at his former glory.

“Oh, I loved this one,” he said out ‘loud to his empty apartment, which resembled a small war held within a comic book shop. He scrolled down seeing his spelling and grammar mistakes. “I miss the Iron Age!”

Outside a storm raged across the sky. It made its presence known by making the lights dim as ionized particles danced through the sky above followed by a massive lightning strike with simultaneous thunder which sent the apartment into complete darkness as the windows rattled from the rain.

“WTF!” Kevin swore as he climbed back into his chair. He fumbled for his phone and managed to illuminate the room. “That was intense!”

“You’re telling starking me!”

Kevin yelped and held the phone up. Standing there in the dark was a man in a stylised red and black bodysuit, katana in hand with a slightly confused look on his face.

“Scalphunter?” Kevin asked.

“That’s my name tubby, don’t wear it out,” Scalphunter looked around. “Seems I’m not in Nebraska anymore.”

“It’s Kansas…” Kevin slowly stood as he corrected the character, he’d created for a fan fic universe, thinking he’d bumped his head when he fell out of the chair from the lightning strike. “We’re not in Kansas anymore!”

Scalphunter stepped forward and grabbed Kevin by the collar. “I WAS JUST IN NEBRASKA! Judging by the décor that isn’t of the Smoke Stack, where I JUST WAS can mean either I’ve been snatched into another dimension or this is a level of hell because Darius Stane killed me! So, which is it, fat boy?”

Kevin gulped. “This isn’t possible…”

“Spit it out tub of guts,” Scalphunter shook him like a British nanny. “Speak!”

“You’re a character I created for a fan fic universe on a comic book site!” Kevin wailed as he felt his mind melting at the whole concept he was verbalising. “You’re not rea…”

Scalphunter slapped Kevin silent. “How was that for real? Stark for brains! Okay, I prefer to do my killing when it’s well lit, so where’s the holo-pad that runs your mainframe?”

Kevin was simply stunned and unable to reply. Scalphunter sighed and shook him again as the power clicked back on.

“Oh goody!” Scalphunter tossed Kevin onto the floor. “Please beg, I always like it when they beg.”

“You’re the head of the European Assassination Division!” Kevin blurted out.

“So, you read up on me,” Scalphunter shrugged. “That extended your life by seven sec…”

“Your name is Gerald Wimple and your parents were killed by the Suppai Jorōgumo!”

Scalphunter stopped dead. “We shall never suffer a spider to live!” He said on reflex. He gazed intently at the man on the floor. “How the stark do you know that?”

“Um because I wrote it!” Kevin gulped as slowly stood up.

Scalphunter lunged forward, impaling Kevin through the shoulder to the floor. “START TALKING! NOW!”

“AHH! F$%&! OH GOD!” Kevin screamed as blood seeped from the wound down the sword.

“It’s gonna hurt more when I reef it out,” Scalphunter declared. “Now talk!”

“What are your parents names?” Kevin blurted out.

Scalphunter opened his mouth and stood there like a carnival clown. “Um…mum and dad, der!”

“You don’t know because I haven’t written it. I created you!” Kevin panted.

“So, you’re my real daddy?” Scalphunter said in a weird falsetto voice. “Maybe the Supreme Commander is messing with my head again.”

“IT’S ALL TRUE!” Kevin screamed. “Check my computer!”

Scalphunter looked around in a circle and shrugged. “Where?”

Kevin pointed to the black, oversized late 2000’s computer. Scalphunter whistled. “What year is this, like 2150 tech?”

“2018!”

“GET THE STARK OUT!” Scalphunter cried. “I need me a sports almanac, or is that an anorak? Okay crouching wombat hidden pop-tart, what am I looking for that is going to prove this starking pile of krang crap you’re shovelling!”

“Iron Age Library file,” Kevin panted. “It’s all there. My notes, stories…”

“Deepest desires, sickest fantasies, perhaps? If I find naked pictures of me then…Old Man Scalphunter? What is this stark?”

“I starte…”

“SHUT IT!” Scalphunter snapped. “Trying to read here! Seriously, you write like ten-year-old!”

“Gerald, cou…”

Scalphunter stopped, walked over and smacked Kevin into unconsciousness. “Seriously, stop calling me Gerald, starking piece of stark!”

--

Kevin awoke spluttering as he spat out water that had brought him back to consciousness.

“Wake the stark up!” Scalphunter yelled waggling the empty bucket. “I’ve just read the ENTIRE Iron Age thing, must thank @wildvine for the reading order and whoever @cbishop is for such a neat orderly library, but I digress; you need to explain…like now!”

“Don’t kill me!” Kevin whimpered.

“Oh, look at yourself nutcage! I’ve bandaged you up, put a field dressing on you BECAUSE I NEED YOU ALIVE! Now talk, explain how you’ve written my whole life out before it’s even happened huh? Wizard? Time traveller? Deus ex Machina? Make with the talk!”

“I don’t know!”

“From what I’ve gather you’re either some sort of fat useless nerd from Australia OR some sort of god, can’t decide which yet. You know more about me than I do and I’M ME! THAT DOESN’T MAKE SENSE! And for some reason I don’t win, which is just rude!”

“You’re the bad guy, that’s why,” Kevin coughed.

Scalphunter smiled, “Bad guy, hell’s yeah. Now explain WHY I don’t jump down and kill Ngumi Takada at the end of Hole In The Shield huh? That’s such an UN-ME thing to do.”

“Ngumi is a character created by…”

“So, all my world lives in your head?”

Kevin pushed up his sweat-caked glasses. “No, Josh came up with the concept.”

“WHO THE STARK IS JOSH?” Scalphunter slammed the desk. “Seriously this is like keeping an eye on your girlfriend during an Indakistan orgy!”

“Stop yelling at me.”

Scalphunter rolled across the floor and grabbed Kevin by his piggish nose and reefed it hard. “You don’t get to tell me what to do, Kevy my boy. Now you’re going to talk like your life depended on it, because it does. So, breathe, focus annnnnd…….go!”

Kevin exhaled. “You’re a fictional character I created for a fan fic universe called Iron Age in which Stryfe, now calling himself the Supreme Commander, took over the world and has ruled for about two hundred years. Characters were created and we wrote collectively in the universe which was created by @joshmightbe, well that’s his user I.D on comic vine where we post the stories. I created you.”

“Based on what? Because reading me over, seems you’re not that clever to have created someone like me by yourself.”

Kevin hung his head. “Your name comes from an X-Man villain.”

“There’s an X-Man villain called Gerald Wimple? Get the stark out!”

“No, Scalphunter. Gerald Wimple was a name I came up with as I wanted something distinct but relatively normal. You’re also partially based on Deadpool…”

Scalphunter turned to the reader who was looking at these words and said to them. “Well he sounds cool, doesn’t he kids!”

“But that came later. You’ve got the super power of healing slash regeneration which is a blessing and a curse for you because you take extreme risks because you can’t die although fire and gas-based toxins take longer to process because they destroy your cells.”

“You seem to spurt extremely large sections of word bull$#!+ from your noise hole,” Scalphunter remarked. “But go on.”

“You’re the head of the European Assassination Division or EAD which is a poorly defined section of the Supreme Commander’s army. I based it in Sweden because it was close to where Doom’s empire was and I’m tired of every super story being US-centric.”

“Preach brother, preach,” Scalphunter hallelujahed.

“You grew up in Japan and could’ve easily become part of S.H.I.E.L.D or any one of the resistance movements we set up in the Iron Age, but a splinter spider group killed your parents when you were ten which set you on the path to becoming this universes premier assassin and killing machine.”

“…You killed my parents?”

“Sorry,” Kevin hung his head as he saw the wave of sadness sweep over the man holding him hostage in his own home. “They’re just chara…”

Scalphunter lashed out and knocked Kevin’s two front teeth out with a backhand. “NOT TO ME! They were my parents! Any idea what that does to a ten-year-old, you fat STARK! And seemingly because you wrote them…you wrote them…oh that’s just brilliant!”

“Ooo bwoke my teef!” Kevin coughed blood.

“Ah shut up nerd! I’m going to memorise this life of mine you’ve written out for and then, you are going to write me BACK into the universe, WITH ALL MY NEW KNOWLEDGE, and possibly some cosmic powers and hyper extended adult pokey bits, and I’m going to rule the world!”

“Vat’s inthane!”

Scalphunter crouched down. “You, Kevin Toothless Fat Bastard, are going to rewrite my universe or I’m going to do some horrible stuff to you, starting with engraving every name I know into your back with a fork! Then I’ll throw you in a tub full of salt and lemon juice! Then I’ll…”

“Othkay, othkay!”

Scalphunter flicked him on the forehead. “Don’t interrupt! Then I’ll tie electrical cable to your nipples…”

--

Scalphunter stood triumphantly as he held the four hundred pages of “The New Adventures of Scalphunter, Super King Sexy Man of Every Single Universe”. He looked down at the battered, bloody and tired Kevin slumped in the computer chair.

“You’ve done well, little fatso. Sleep. This is so cool, I mean beyond cool. I go back into the Iron Age, defeated Darius Stane with a finger click, shove the Supreme Commander’s head UP his own butt and take over. Carol Danvers becomes my love monkey, I do like that but you’ll have to make her nineteen again somehow. Then, to begin my magical universe conquering adventure these Chronos Cops you half-assedly wrote a bit for show up and BOOM I’ve got access to time and space, which gets Warstar, a gay Native American mutant from my universe, to show up with a whole bunch of other magical Doctor Strange fan fic amalgams you made up which I easily defeat and take all their stuff giving me, insert Genie rip off, PHENOMINAL COSMIC POWER! I don’t know who this Dallas Riordan character is you slot in, but I do like a redhead, so she can stay but she’s got to cut down on the effing swearing. She’s like a starkmouth!

I do like a bit of conflict where you have me fight your original creation Gunship, which as I find out is essentially just John Cena as Colossus who can fly and shoot beams but I’m tangenting aren’t I, and couple of others. Honestly you should’ve emailed that @delphic dude and used Kon-El from Corrupted, that dude can write! But you were on a dead line.

I take over universe after universe with pockets of love, lust and tragedy. It’s almost Shakespearian if that’s even a word. You’ve finally written something worthwhile, Kevin from the Wonder Years, and it makes me so happy. And the fact you named my parents and wrote them back into reality without using time travel or cloning which is SUCH A MARVEL thing to do! Ladies and gents, my mumma and papa, Mr & Mrs Fred and Wilma Wimple…why does that sound familiar? No matter, they’re alive and okay and…

BLAM!

“…why do I feel strange?”

Kevin sat shakily holding the gun Scalphunter had left lying around. “Becath now, you arthowl, you’re no wonger you! By having me rewrith you, your mootant powerth didn’t twigger in Japan.”

Scalphunter looked down at the hole that went right through him and blobs of blood pumped out. “No, not like this…”

“You totally skwipped over the small paragraph in chapter theventy,” Kevin lisped as he stood up. “If I can wewrite you, I can make thith end my way!”

Scalphunter dropped to his knees, paper flying about like a John Woo film. “Mummy! Daddy!”

“Thhark isn’t even a thwear word, iss your ooniverses version of thwearing thince you can’t thwear on $%#^&@! Comic Vine!” Kevin aimed the gun at his creations head. “Thouldn’t of methed with me!”

Scalphunter felt his life ebb from his body, the first time that had ever happened considering his powers. His eyes flickered as darkness rushed in to take him. Suddenly pain returned, his eyes bolted open and he was being crushed.

-Oh, this isn’t good- Gerald thought as he looked around. A peal of light poked through and he twisted his head to see a man pulling his sword from the rubble like a knight of old.

“Oh, this is that lazy but clever writing where Kevin links it back into something he’s already written,” Scalphunter addressed the reader. “Not bad fat boy. Okay, let’s see if I remember my lines…ahem…me me me me. Mo mo mo moooo. Red leather yellow leather. Okay…”

The end but continued here https://comicvine.gamespot.com/forums/fan-fic-8/marvel-iron-age-distain-part-4-651234/#1 if you really want to read some Iron Age stuff

TommytheHitman - Soar

Soar: CCC #81

When I was born I was able to fly, someday I'd like to use it to get away from everything.

My name's Arthur, people call me 'Soar'. I'm a superhero, crime fighter, vigilante... it's not like the comics or movies though. I'm the only one who's out there, and right now I wish that wasn't the case.

I wish I'd never become Soar... wish I'd never tried to fight for justice.

I'm standing in the city of shadow, perched atop the tallest building I could find and really just thinking about the way the world is. There's rain pelting down from the sky, warm summer's rain that reminds me of the blood I've seen so much of recently. Like I said it's raining, the rain resembling little white dashes in the night sky. Feeling empty I hold out a gloved hand and let the raindrops fall into my palm for a good few minutes, the cold wetness reminding me that I'm alive... but then the rain stops and I'm left standing alone. I just want to feel something.

There's a vibration in my suit's back pocket so I reach in and pull out my cell phone, the thing's screen flashing as it displays a message that's just been received.

Dana: "R U Okay?"

Reading the text I shove the phone back where it came from and grit my teeth. Dana doesn't understand me... nobody understands me. A sigh, built up over the last few weeks finally escapes my lips and I lower my head feeling completely useless.

Something far below catches my eye. Looking at the ground in my saddened state I spot a couple of police cars in an alleyway, switching to my telescopic vision I catch the faces of the detectives and understand that regardless of how I'm feeling this is a matter that requires my attention. Stepping off the ledge of the rooftop my body simple refuses to fall and I hover in the air until a quick mental command sends me descending peacefully towards the scene below. As I descend the red ribbons tied to my shoulders flap behind me violently thanks to the updraft, blue and black and gold of my outfit visible in white moonlight, I try to forget the events of the past few days. After a few seconds of peaceful descent I land upon the ground and instantly break into a walk, the detectives at the scene (a few of whom I recognize) don't even acknowledge me as I arrive, not because they're too busy inspecting the scene but because they simply don't care.

"Good evening, gentlemen." I say as I duck under the yellow police tape telling me not to cross and enter the area. Again, nobody even looks up at me.

"Got a nasty one here." A detective named Taylor grumbles whilst crouched by the sole dead body at the scene, corpse next to a red convertible. "Soar, check the area." I stare at the detective, flabbergasted. I've done nothing to disturb such abruptness, but that's what I'm getting. My mouth begins to open but it snaps shut before any words comes out. Stepping into superspeed I move to the body, a brown haired, middle aged fellow wearing red flannel, his wallet's in his shirt pocket and upon inspection it tells me his name.

"Victim's called Michael Morgan. Lives in an apartment on Spiel Avenue." I switch my X-Ray vision on in that area's direction and feel sorrow strike my heart. "...his wife's waiting for him... but there's something else." Looking to the vehicle I notice that not only is the driver's door open, blood from Michael's hand decorating the outside window, but the back passenger seat's door is open as well. A small penguin plush toy lies on the ground, the sole remains of its occupant. "He has a daughter." I mutter before scooping up the toy and holding it close to my chest. My eyes flash towards the other end of the alley, picking up a set of tire marks burned into the ground. "He forced them into this alley..." I mutter to myself. "Watched them pull to a stop, then he shot Michael... and took his daughter." The penguin drops to the ground by my feet, forgotten. Detective Taylor steps up calmly behind me, smokes a cigarette that makes me cough and doesn't even pretend to care.

"Then go sort it, superhero." He grumbles past his cigar.

That's when it clicks and I realize that I am taken completely for granted. These men don't appreciate me in the slightest just like the rest of the world, completely underappreciated. My feet leave the ground as my nose catches the scent of hair lotion that seemed to almost be clinging to the penguin toy. I leave the scene frowning, my fists clenched.

Right now I really want to hit something.

My flight path takes me over Shadow City's darkly lit skyscrapers, commotion filling my ears as I follow the trail. At this very moment people are talking about me, discussing whether or not I'm a boon or a burden. I just want to help, but people on TV are talking about me like I'm some sort of monster, and everyone's watching so I can hear it coming from every single apartment I pass. My mind wanders to the kidnapper, a mystery man who's not only killed an innocent man but kidnapped his daughter and picked the absolute worst night to do it. God... I'm so angry. I... I think I might kill this man.

Ahead the buildings begin to shrink, skyscrapers giving way to a more seedy area of the city. Touching down in the Lights district a gang of hobos watch me land in the middle of the street and whisper excitedly to one another, heroic needles lying in a clutter by their feet. Ignoring them I look to the apartment building looming above me, lights in the windows watching me like a thousand eyes. A moment of queasiness fills me but taking a deep breath I grip the door handle to the building and step inside, only to not find myself in the building's lobby but instead in someone's bedroom.

Confused I step back against the door through which I entered only to find it closed shut behind me. Then I notice the young man sitting just to my right.

"Oh wow." He says with a notable British accent. "This is neat."

Taking a second to regard the room I realize I'm too tall for it, my head almost touching the ceiling and forcing me to tilt my skull slightly. It's a very small room, a double bed in the center under two windows, one to the left and the other just behind. There's a desk to my right next to a brown cupboard, and sat at the desk but looking up at me is a strangely peculiar young man.

"Hi there. Welcome." He says, looking excited under a pair of smart, black glasses. "Sorry about the mess, didn't realize this was gonna happen until it did."

My hand reaches for the door handle behind me. "I'm sorry. I must have-" But it can't find it. My head snaps around and finds that not only has the door handle vanished but the whole door has been replaced by a white wall. "What's going on?" I ask, looking back around.

"So you're not gonna believe this." He says before catching himself mid sentence. "In fact you might want to sit down." He pats the edge of the bed and I feel oddly compelled to do as requested, I sit down on the edge of the bed resulting in a loud creak. "Right. So you won't believe this but I'm your creator."

I think I misheard that last part.

"No, you heard me." He says without me saying anything.

"So... you're God?" I ask after sitting silent for what must have been a few minutes. He just sits there smiling with his weird, pudgy face.

"No. I'm your creator. You can call me 'Matt'." He holds out his right hand and we shake awkwardly. Sat upon the bed I think I have a sort of existential crisis, my mind screaming whilst I sit completely stone faced.

"Then why am I here?"

Matt, or Matthew as he's called seems to shift in his seat, uncomfortable or unsure I can't really say. He seemed to be thinking about his next words which after a moment he finally says.

"I think I've made some mistakes." He mutters, voice low as he stands up from his seat. "With you I mean."

"How do I exist?" I ask almost blurting the question out. "I mean you're..."

"I'm not God!" He yells, agitated. "Nowhere even near, dude." His agitation seems to turn into embarrassment. "You're a character I write about in short stories and stuff."

Short stories? Is that all I'm worth?

"Do I sell well?"

The look on Matt's face is an odd one, like he's been sucking a lemon dry. "Not really... but that's not important! You're more important so let's get back on track." I nod at the boy to continue. "I love Superman." He says that like I'm supposed to know who that is, before I can ask he carries on. "So I wanted to make my own Supermanesque character." He gestures to me but then a pained expression fills him. "But... I've been through some sad stuff recently and my mood just changed. Y'know?"

"I can relate."

"Yeah. So I thought about what if I made this Superman guy depressed! That way I could write all my thoughts and feelings down and have it on the page." A bit of anger fills me, am I just a plaything being used for the entertainment of others? "But this is your first issue." He says, sad tune chirping up a little. "And now I think I wanna change it."

I lean forward in the bed causing it to creak once again.

"So you want to change my life tonally?"

"Yeah! I just thought I'd chat it through with you first though."

The two of us lock eyes, I'm busy trying to figure out if this is real or not and Lord knows what he's thinking.

"I'm alright with that."

"Great!" He holds out a hand and pulls me up from the bed, excited once again. "Great. Well I'll get started right away!"

There's a loud creak only this time not from the bed, swinging out from the wall is the door I entered through and on the other side a swirling black void that presumably will take me home. I look back to Matt who's already sat back at his desk taking out a pen and a pad of paper.

"Hey, Matt." I place a hand on the boy's shoulder, a sparkle of hope stirring in my heart. "It'll be alright." He smiles at me.

"Thanks Arthur. Now get outta here."

I do just that, stepping through the door I instantly find myself back in the seedy apartment building I started in wondering if what I just experienced was real or not. The kidnapper's standing across from me and holding a knife to the throat of the young girl he kidnapped.

"I don't know how you got here, Soar." The kidnapper snarls, voice hinting at the truth. "But you won't be leaving."

Something strange, the feeling of depression and doom I felt before is gone in its entirety. In its place is a sense of hope and optimism not felt for months. A smirk fills my face and with the merest flick of my power the kidnapper is up against the wall, unconscious. The little girl who'd been taken looks up at me shocked, then the tears begin to flow so I crouch down and wrap my arms around her.

"You're safe now." I tell her. "Everything will be alright."

An hour or so passes with the cops coming to take the girl somewhere safe, this time they're thankful and look me in the eye. With everything else quiet I fly home, climbing through the window into my apartment where, with a burst of super speed I switch from my costume to my night wear and jump into bed.

"Hey..." My wife, Dana sounds exhausted next to me. "How was your day?"

"It was okay." I say, giving her a tight hug before rolling over. "...I think everything's gonna get better."

Cbishop - The Bar

The Bar

Two guys walk into a bar. One's me- a five-foot eight vampire P.I. in a red leather trench coat and hat, with a cheap dark suit underneath. The other's a six-foot something old guy with a bald head, a handlebar mustache, a tan trench coat, and a rather expensive charcoal grey suit. The bar is dark, smokey, and filled with bikers playing pool. The group of four at the table closest to the door decide our looks need rearranging, and come stalking towards us.

"You two smell like pigs," says the first as the room goes quiet. "We don't like pigs." He swings and I mist, flowing around and between the group, solidifying behind them. They're startled, but too dumb to stand down.

They turn on my companion, two of them swinging pool cues at him simultaneously. One breaks across his chest, and the other breaks across his nose. He doesn't even flinch. Instead, he grabs a fist of each biker in his hands, and just squeezes. I'm honestly not sure if it's the bones or the pool cue handles I hear splintering as they go to their knees. The bald guy snorts smoke from his nostrils without having taken a drag on anything, and then lets out an inhuman growl that causes the other two bikers to grab their companions and haul them out the door.

The rest of the bikers in the room suddenly become very interested in their games, and the room climbs back to a low buzz as they mutter to each other and start clacking balls across the tables again. I see the guy I'm looking for sitting at the bar nursing a rum and coke. I nod to the bald guy, and we head over. I stop at a respectful distance, and say, "Are you Chris Bishop?"

The guy looks tired, and rather than turn around, he just glances at us in the mirror that's behind the bar. "Who's askin'?"

"The name's Solomon Seal. I'm a P.I.," I say, tipping my hat slightly.

"Hmph," the guy chuckles. "And a vampire."

Okay, he surprised me. "How did you--"

"--And you are definitely Heironymous," he says to the suit.

"Special Agent Heironymous," he corrects. "Buy you another drink?" the special agent asks.

"Nah," he says. "I just drink the one so the bikers don't harass me."

"Why not go to another bar then?" asks the agent.

He shrugs at the mirror. "Because I thought the biker fight would be more interesting?"

"More interesting than what?" I chime in.

He finally turns towards us, but looks no more interested than before. "Would you guys really have wanted to have this chat in my bedroom?" That's when I notice the laptop sitting in front of him, the light at the top indicating that he's recording with the webcam.

I'm not really making any sense of his answer, but "Guess not," I acknowledge.

"No," confirms Heironymous. Pointing at the laptop, he adds, "You mind turning that off?"

"I do," Chris says with a firm tone. "You don't like it, there's the door." Heironymous doesn't respond. "Look, guys, this is weird, and I'm tired. What the fug do you want?"

"Heironymous hired me to find you," I say to explain my presence.

"I just have some questions," Heironymous says gruffly.

"Psht," Chris huffs. "You have questions? Kevin," he calls to the bartender as he grabs his laptop. "I'm moving to table nine. Send me an unsweet tea, will ya?"

"Sure," says Kevin, flipping him off.

Chris ignores it. "You guys want anything?"

"You got Kentucky whiskey?" Heironymous asks evenly.

The bartender nods.

"Straight double then."

Kevin nods again and grabs a bottle, and points at me.

"Manhattan," I order. "Vermouth, Kentucky whiskey," I say in deference to Heironymous, "and your choice on the rest of it."

Kevin nods, rolling his eyes when he thinks I'm not paying attention. The three of us head over to the table, and a cute redhead with "Amy" on her nametag arrives with our drinks just after we're seated. Heironymous tips her a twenty, and says, "If you see our drinks run out, bring another. Otherwise, we need a little privacy, okay?"

Amy smiles at the twenty, and winks at Heironymous as she turns to walk away. "Sure," she says over her shoulder in an almost-sultry voice. The agent pays her no mind.

"You mind if I get right to the point?" Heironymous asks Chris.

Chris sets the laptop at the end of the table against the wall, the light still shining from the camera. He smirks. "Please do. There's only a little less than two hours until my deadline."

"Deadline?" I ask.

Chris just looks at the agent. "Seriously? You didn't tell him anything?"

"What?" I ask, now completely lost.

The agent's mustache twitched, which I think was him glowering at Chris. He cut his eyes at me, then definitely glowered at Chris. Chris just looked back at him patiently, but clearly still tired. The two said nothing for a few seconds, then Chris just shrugged, and reached for a couple packets of Sweet & Low. Ripping them open, he dumped the contents into his tea, and stirred it with his straw, giving Heironymous a bored but expectant stare. "You know I'll win," he said. "Weren't you getting 'straight to the point?'" he mocked dryly.

Heironymous growled in mild frustration, then looked at me. "Solomon Seal, meet our maker."

I craned my neck back sharply. "Say what?"

"Look, we're characters. Created by this guy," he says as he points at Chris.

Chris just gives me a mirthless, closed mouth grin.

I look back at Heironymous like he's lost his mind.

"Your life's just 'one bad joke after another,'" he says, quoting me. "Before you became a vampire, how much do you recall?"

I open my mouth to answer, but close it again, looking at the ceiling as I realize I don't remember anything before Jeanine Fairchild bit me, other than vague memories of a flirty history between us.

"How many cases do you actually remember?" he asks me.

I look at the table while I wrack my brain for an answer. I can only remember hiring a few doctors to try to find a cure to vampirism, and then having to immolate them after things went south. That was over a course of months though! Between that... I look up at Heironymous. "I've got nothin'." Then I look at Chris. "What the hell?"

He just looks at Heironymous.

Knocking back his whiskey, he says, "That's pretty much where I was going to go with this too. So," he says as he leans forward slightly, "what the hell?"

Chris gets defensive. "Whattaya mean? You've had several stories!"

"The damned things are all over the place!" countered Heironymous. "First I'm an Escort for a princess in some vague location. Then I'm fighting some former president lizard man in Chicago. Then I'm in Indigo City with a partner that was never mentioned before, fighting a ninja in high tech samurai armor. Then I'm in New Vegas giving Roulette the lay of the land. Then I'm in the City of Dragons, and I'm the princess' father. Then I'm in Norfolk fighting another dragon and a jinn!"

"You forgot your fight to save Lincoln, and the excursion with the Vikings," Chris says with a smirk.

Heironymous ground his teeth so hard I could hear it from across the table. "I decided to omit the ancient history," he said testily. He calmed when Amy brought over another whiskey. "Thank you. Go ahead and bring me another, please," he requested, knocking back the second drink.

Chris shrugged. "Look, I know- your continuity doesn't flow well. You were an experiment on Comic Vine!" he protests.

Heironymous cocks his head, looking unamused. I just took a sip of my Manhattan, and listened.

Chris sighs. "At first, I wasn't going to name any of my characters. Partly because I wanted to keep my ideas to myself, and partly because it makes the writing harder. I wanted an exercise in writing without names, but eliminating 'he said/ she said' as well."

Amy brought the agent's third drink, and walked away again. Chris looked over at the bar, and Kevin was typing on his own laptop, and laughing. Chris' laptop dinged, and he checked the site he had mentioned. "Damn. He's posted again?" He looked at Kevin, the bartender laughed, and they flipped each other off. Kevin went back to typing, and Chris just shook his head.

Thinking for a few seconds, he said, "I gave that up pretty quickly, and decided to give you a name."

"Why Heironymous?" the agent asked pointedly.

"It sounded old," Chris said flatly, "like something out of Lincoln's time. Which is what I needed. And there was this story I read as a kid- my first story about dragons, I'm pretty sure- and it said that no one could ever know a dragon's true name, because then they could control it. That's been in the back of my mind, so I've always figured Heironymous probably isn't your real name."

Heironymous grunted.

"I kind of ignored your first two 'no-name' stories, and decided you'd be my crossover character. So you had stories with Terminator, Predator, Savage Dragon, some time-travelling Vikings I made up, the post-apocalyptic Fallout, the world of 5th Column Comics, and even some Real Life Super Heroes." He shrugged. "It just seemed like fun." He fidgeted nervously, then said, "But I kept thinking of bits of continuity, and I tried wedging them in there, and... agh," he trailed off in frustration. "I don't know. It's not really working. I keep thinking I need to go back and tighten it all up. Make your story your own- get rid of the crossovers that have others' copyrighted stuff, and rework them to make them all mine. I've got so much more story in mind for you."

"Do tell," said Heironymous expectantly.

Chris wagged his finger, "Now now. No spoilers."

Heironymous growled.

"Nice try though," Chris said, not worrying about the agent's frustration. Then he looked at me. "What about you?"

I just raised my eyebrows in surprise.

"Any questions?" he prompted.

I laughed. "Yeah. Lots." Taking a big gulp of my drink, I sat it aside and thought.

"Look, I'll give you two," said Chris. "The deadline's getting close, alright?"

"That deadline again. Is this a story?" I ask.

"I'm trying. One question left," he said tiredly.

"Oh, come on," I protest.

"Okay, fine," he says, waving me down. "Get on with it then."

His computer dinged, and he checked the site. He rolled his eyes, and looked across the bar. He and Kevin flipped each other off. "Guy's a damned machine," Chris muttered before looking back to me expectantly.

"Okay, why the red hat and trench coat?" I ask, waving a hand over my coat. "Kind of conspicuous for a private investigator, don't you think?"

"Yeahhh," Chris sighed. "I can't get the danged color out of my head. I haven't mentioned it in a story until now, because I'm trying to let sense win out, but I think we're going to have to go with it. In my head the tone of your stories is really a cross between Hellboy and Dick Tracy. So as much as I've tried to fight it, we might just have to roll with the matching hat and coat."

I started to say, "That's it?" but I didn't want him to count it as a question, so I just nodded instead.

"Simple as that," he answered anyway.

"Hmph," I chuckle. "Okay. Then what about my name? Why 'Solomon Seal?' Alliteration from a writer I get, but 'Seal' just seems like an odd choice." Before he can can say anything, I add, "Let me guess, you like the singer?"

He gives a non-committal look, but says, "It didn't hurt, but actually, your name has more to do with my grandmother."

"Come again?"

"She liked flowers, and often spent hours reading the dictionary. I kind of picked that habit up as part of my search for character ideas. I ran across 'Solomon's seal' in the dictionary. It's a kind of plant in the lily family, and the dictionary I had at the time described it as having 'circular scars' on the stalk, if I'm remembering it correctly." He shakes his head, and says, "Anyway, 'circular scars' made me think of 'vampire's bite,' and 'Solomon's seal' - alliterate, as you pointed out- sounded like the down-to-earth type name a private eye of the forties or fifties would have. So," he shrugged, "that's how you got to be a vampire P.I."

I grunted. "Well, how 'bout that?"

"Alright, guys, I hate to wrap this up, but time's wastin'. What's the point of all this?" he asks, finally taking a pull on his straw, draining about a third of the tea.

Heironymous knocks back his last drink, and when Amy starts over, he holds his hand up, and makes a check mark motion in the air. She nods and goes back to the bar. "I just want my damned story straightened out," he says gruffly.

"Oh, wah," says Chris. "I'll get to it, okay?"

"When?" demands Heironymous.

"When I get to it," Chris says, now clearly annoyed. "Don't make me write a mystical weapon through your heart, okay?"

The agent grunts, but decides to leave. He stands, reaching in his coat for his wallet as Amy approaches. When she gets to the table, Chris snatches the bill before Heironymous can take it. "Dude, I've got it. Your money's not real," he says, making a shooing motion.

Heironymous glowers, then nods at me before heading for the door. I look at Chris, and say, "Don't get up," before misting my way out of the booth, and falling in step behind the agent. As nights go, this has been a weird one.

Remember: Votes due by Sunday, December 30, 2018 @11:59pm New York time. (click the link if you're unsure)

I'm glad you're here. Thanks for reading, thanks for voting, and see you in fourteen days! -cb :^D

29 Comments

Character Creation Contest #81 - A Talk With The Creator

The very meta Stan Lee
The very meta Stan Lee

Okay, peeps, Time_Phantom has some stuff keeping him away from Comic Vine, but he sent a PM with his contest idea, and asked me to set it up. So, here's the theme: A Talk With The Creator.

Your OC for this contest is the fiction version of any comic or writer you choose, interacting with their character, and the character's world. In Time_Phantom's words:

My idea was to have the prompt be about writers being able to actually speak with their Characters and interact with the world's they've made.

Can be a fan fic (like Spider-Man asking Stan Lee what Brand New Day was about or Liefeld telling Deadpool why he can't draw feet and why so many pouches.)

Or an original story with OC's.

That second part means that your story's OC can be YOU talking to YOUR character, and interacting with their world.

No word limit, and the deadline is in two weeks. So, Thursday, December 13, 2018 @11:59pm New York time. (click the link if you're unsure)

Remember: All are welcome to compete, and the winner gets to pick the next contest.

I'm really glad you're here! Have fun, and see you in fourteen days! :^D

26 Comments

CCC #80 - Voting Thread

Vampire
Vampire

Hey, everyone, Batkevin74 asked me to do the voting thread, so here we are! The theme this time was an all-original tale of the vampire!

Gotta tell ya: I am very happy that we have SIX entries this time! You go, writers! So let's get right to it, okay?

The voting rules:

  • READ the stories, PICK your favorite one, and CAST your VOTE!
  • If you wrote, you should vote! (It's just sporting)
  • No voting for yourself. (Also sporting)
  • This vote is going to be two weeks and two days to get us back to a Sunday deadline, but this is Batkevin's contest, so that means the deadline is Sunday, November 18th, @11:59PM Sydney, Australia time (click the link if you're unsure)

The stories:

4donkeyjohnson - Fangs

Fangs

I need to feed.

An endless hunger, a craving, yearning for more.

Never satsified. Never saited.

But worse is the lonliness.

Especialy when you love them. Worse when you love them.

But...

I need to feed.

-fin-

FreshQ - Death is a Vampire

Death is a Vampire

It all began on a foggy night, where HE was seen dragging several coffins into a cemetery.

I woke up as the first rays of the sun began to clumsily illuminate the room in their familiar yellow Light. As i was still fatigued, the bright Light of the Sun bothered me a little too much, so i stood up from my bed to close the curtains. In this moment, someone knocked at the door, so i quickly changed my clothes to a manner befitting a detective and hurried the stairs down, to greet my guest.

A police man stood in front of the door. „Good Morning Mr. Shen. Please come in.“ „ Thank you very much Mr. Byte“, he said while wiping the sweat on his Face of, with a small handkerchief.

Mr. Shen was the police officer in this remote town. He had a small but quite corpulent build and was something like a local celebrity in this town, thanks to his kind nature that made it so that nobody could hate him.

„Its still so early in the morning, but its already so hot, isnt it Mr. Byte?“ „Definitely Mr. Shen. But why are you here today? Did something important happened?“ „Ah,, yes“ he answered as he was searching through his pocket for something. Seconds later he pulled something out of his Jacket.

„ There were some people complaining about someone, or to be honest...“ he said as he got a little bit closer to me „... something that has been roaming in the streets during the Night and it has made the townspeople anxious.“

Time_Phantom - Recovering Vampire

Recovering Vampire

“God.” Aiden Brooks said with his head bowed as he led that evenings meeting to a close with the serenity prayer. “grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change…”

His attention was broken for a brief second by the impatient sigh of a young woman across the table. Her face displayed about as much care as a statue. Aiden did not mind. Half of the people who attended the meetings just need his signature on their court papers anyway. Aiden hoped that at least one person left the group changed after hearing stories of struggle, recovery and triumph. Or at least would use a ride sharing app next time they go clubbing.

Aiden continued, “courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference."

The AA meeting attendees filed out of the restaurant Aiden used with permission from the owner to hold the meetings. One by one the court ordered attendees handed him their documents he signed so they could be on their way. The last one was the young woman.

“You didn’t speak.” She said.

“Sometimes it’s good to listen.” Aiden said as he put a hand on her shoulder and ushered her out of the door. Aiden was close enough to smell the scent of her hair, his hand could feel the warmth coming off her body and as she faced him he noticed how attractive she was.

“I thought everyone was supposed to talk about how, you all used to be fun.” She said with a smile as she reached to Aiden’s hand and grazed it with her finger tips.

Aiden’s chest tightened and he cleared his throat, “I know a thing or two about having a problem.”

The woman smiled and touched reached for Aiden’s hand again, “You feel cold.”

Aiden laughed and began to relax, “I probably need to eat.”

“Same here.” She said. The woman gestured at the sign above them, “This is your place, right?”

Aiden nodded and opened the door to the restaurant, “My neighbors, upstairs.”

They both went inside. His senses felt over loaded and all he could do was focus on the woman. He studied every detail, her clothes, her walk and how she spoke. Her touch felt like fire on his cold skin. She began to talk but, Aiden had already stopped listening. Aiden relaxed and a calmness came over him.

Aiden awoke in his bed, the woman from the meeting was there and he immediately began to panic,” Oh no!”

Aiden rolled her body toward him, he put his hand on her neck and was relieved to feel a strong pulse. Aiden could not recall the rest of the night after he brought the woman back into the restaurant. Aiden could feel himself after so long begin to slip.

“Congrats, you monster.” A voice at the foot of Aiden’s bed mocked.

Aiden looked over and was met with the neutral gaze of a woman in a long black coat and tired eyes. Aiden said, “I’m happy with it, but it was an accident.”

“If you were having urges you should have called.” The woman yawned and directed a glance at the woman in bed with Aiden. “Instead of flirting with a relapse.”

“It’s been ten months.” Aiden said as he got up and sat on the edge of his bed, “The farther I am from the last time the harder it is to control.”

Aiden frowned as he picked his clothes up from off the floor, “I should have been more mindful.”

The woman at the foot of the bed walked around to the side of the bed that Aiden’s partner from last night slept on. She frowned and said, “So you accidently charmed the pants off her?”

“Yes, actually!” Aiden answered.

The woman from the meeting awoke and gasped at the sight of the woman watching her from the side of the bed. She covered herself with blankets and turned to Aiden, “Who is she?”

“Laurin Grey. Aiden’s non-monogamous life partner.” Laurin said with a hand extended to the other woman.

The other woman groaned in disgust, threw a pillow at Aiden and stormed out of the room. Laurin backed away and laughed, “I’d want to get out too. He’s a total energy vampire!”

“Funny.” Aiden said as he got dressed into his clothes from last night that were still on the floor. Laurin was Aiden’s girlfriend and as Laurin said they were non-monogamous. They had to be out of necessity, it allowed a level of closeness that suited her and allowed him a connection to a living person outside of an AA meeting.

Laurin leaned against the wall and asked Aiden in a stern tone, “Are your meetings going to become a hunting ground?”

Aiden looked at Laurin in shock, “Are you serious?”

Laurin glared at him, “I have to ask. This isn’t the first person I’ve found in my bed from your meetings.”

“I didn’t do anything!” Aiden said defensively.

Laurin snorted, “Really?”

Aiden exchanged a knowing look and said, “I didn’t do… that.”

Laurin shrugged and started to walk out, “Can you shower and change? You aren’t sitting next to me in my car with the clothes you wore last night.”

“Where are, we going?” Aiden asked without an immediate response.

Aiden showered and got dressed as asked. Aiden’s problem wasn’t exactly a normal situation. Although Laurin said it to make light of the situation and to embarrass Aiden, she was telling the truth. Aiden was a vampire. Aiden did not have a taste for blood, he drained the life energy from other beings to extend his life. Aiden despised the blood drinking vampire and made sure to keep himself under control. Aiden just wanted to live as normally as he could with his unnatural life.

Laurin was not exactly normal either. Laurin was a spiritual medium that worked for the city’s paranormal police. In this world, there were legends that were true. Fantastic creatures coexisted with humanity for eighty years, following the misreading of the Mayan calendar prophecy. A transformative event occurred. It took decades, but a peace was formed and everyone moved on with the new reality. In a world where fantasy was real.

“So what kind of, vampire is it?” Aiden asked as he rode in the passenger seat with Laurin.

“Um, the regular kind?” Laurin answered.

“It does matter you know!” Aiden said, as he faced his girlfriend.

Aiden continued, “There’s the blood sucking kind that look like super models. The long-toothed shambling corpses—.”

“The kind that suck the joy right out of you!” Laurin laughed and reached over to ruffle Aiden’s hair.

Aiden smiled and playfully shoved her hand away, “Seriously though.”

Laurin yawned and stopped in front of an apartment complex. Laurin answered, “He’s a blood feeding type. Recently turned.”

“So why haven’t you called a coven?” Aiden questioned, a vampire coven was usually called in to deal with their own. Laurin wasn’t following police protocol, it made Aiden uncomfortable, a vampire was loose and the rules used to keep people alive weren’t being followed. Aiden ignored it as best he could and followed her lead.

“This close to, Samhain?” Laurin said in an annoyed tone as she reached into her jacket and pulled out a gun and a prescription.

“How long has it been since you slept?” Aiden questioned as he watched Laurin swallow a pill.

“Nine days.” Laurin answered as she checked the magazine of her gun.

Aiden was consumed with worry. With Laurin being a spiritual medium, she was open to spiritual encounters in her dreams and often forced herself to stay awake with drugs to avoid them. But she still did need to sleep, even if it was infrequent. Now she was about to have an armed meeting with a vampire. Aiden didn’t feel safe with letting her go alone.

Laurin faced him and smiled. She seemed to be able to read his worried face like a book, “I would have rested last night but you had a woman in my bed!”

Laurin holstered her gun and got out of the car and Aiden followed, “The least you can do is help me take in a kid before he turns his neighbors into juice boxes.”

“A Coven busted an illegal feeding operation and reported it in.” Laurin explained as they both entered the building, “Twenty bodies. Probably homeless.”

“Was the vampire there?” Aiden asked as he listened to Laurin explain.

The vampire was a teenage boy who was living on the streets when he was picked up by a vampire gang and was thrown into a pen with other homeless people. They were fed on one by one. A squad of vampire knights from a coven arrived as the boy was being fed upon and they destroyed the gang. When the police had arrived, the boy had turned and was scared. Laurin could feel his emotions and took pity on him.

“Are you crazy!” Aiden whispered harshly.

“He was a kid and the police would have shot him on the spot!” Laurin whispered back. Laurin had housed the vampire in a vacant apartment and not but a few days later had disappearances from the area been reported.

“For good reason!” Aiden said back. He continued angrily as the neared the top floor of the building, “Young vampires aren’t able to control their blood lust. They’re little psychos!”

They both stopped at an apartment and Laurin grabbed her pistol and readied herself at the door. Aiden placed his ear to the door and focused. Like other vampire types his physical abilities were above that of a normal human’s. Aiden listened and heard, what sounded like faint sobbing, loud music and what smelled like blood.

In a rush, Aiden pushed against the door with enough force to send it flying from its hinges. The apartment had no furniture, streaks of crimson stained the walls and in the corner of Aiden’s eye an arm that had appeared to have been chewed on laid on the blood-stained carpet. Aiden shuddered and continued inside.

“Aiden.” Laurin whispered.

Aiden turned around and turned around to meet his girlfriend’s gun in his face. Tears were in her eyes, “Aiden, I’m sorry.”

Aiden frowned and said, “He has you under a charm and you’ve been bringing him fresh bodies?”

Aiden felt a chill come over him. A rough pair of hands grabbed his arms and faster than Aiden could move, he could feel teeth tear and rip into his throat. Aiden’s vision went hazy and he could hear a howl next to him. Aiden lost his balance and crashed to the floor, he landed on his side and watched the vampire walk to Laurin.

“What did you bring me?” The vampire screamed, the undead being slapped Laurin to the floor, her head bounced off the ground and knocked her out.

“That blood!” The vampire wailed as his body thrashed and contorted in ways that would have snapped a human in half, “The blood was wrong!”

The vampire retched and his torso heaved. The vampire spit up into his hands and cried. Blood spewed from the creature’s mouth as he tried to catch it and put it back in his mouth. The vampire wiped the bile on his face and skin and cried. Aiden applied pressure to his wound and could barely contain his own amusement at the young vampire’s ignorance.

“Can’t…” Aiden struggled to speak as the wound on his neck began to heal. “You can’t feed off me.”

Aiden sat up as the vampire began to punch and kick at the walls of the apartment. He moved as if he were on fire. Pale skin colored with blood and stank of death. The monster eyed, Laurin and snatched her up and glared at, Aiden.

“I will eat her.” The vampire said, the monster’s eyes began to glow as Aiden looked right into his eyes. The vampire continued, “You will take her place and bring me more food!”

“No.” Aiden said as he stood up. Aiden’s injuries had healed and he took a confident step forward.

“No?” The vampire cried in confusion.

“I’m a vampire myself and you can’t compel me.” Aiden said as he pointed at Laurin.

“Spirits, in thy presence be a willing vessel,” Aiden prayed with his head bowed, “Speak now.”

The air in the room shifted. There was a still ness that hung in the room as Aiden prayed. The vampire seemed to have sensed a change as well and let go of, Laurin. Her body did not fall, however, it hung in the air and then she awoke. Her eyes glowed white, her hair turned white as well and she began to whisper to herself in tongue that no one could understand.

“She’s a spiritual medium.” Aiden explained as he stepped closer to the vampire. “If she stays asleep she can channel spirits through her body.”

Aiden said as Laurin’s mouth opened wide and balls of light poured out of her mouth like bubbles. Violent death kept spiritual energy on the mortal plain. Aiden did not know how many victims Laurin had delivered in nine days, but knew that some spirits had to still be present and Aiden could use that to beat the vampire.

The vampire tried to flee to the exit but was blocked by a wall of light that scorched his body. The monster screamed and the entire building shook. Aiden rushed to Laurin as the vampire lunged at him and dug its claws into his shoulder. Aiden tried to push him, but couldn’t move the vampire. The vampire flung him into a wall, the force of which smashed the drywall and knocked the air out of Aiden.

Aiden’s body screamed! Sharp pains shot through him and he could feel his ribs shift with each breath. The vampire that had been feeding for over a week was much stronger. Much faster. Aiden had willingly starved himself. The gulf between their abilities was wide. Aiden was so week.

The young vampire continued his assault. A gleeful expression widened on the boy’s face as he shredded Aiden’s back with his claws, it then sent Aiden soaring through the apartment with another kick. With blinding speed, the vampire pinned Aiden to another wall and began stabbing into Aiden’s stomach.

Aiden was lost in a trance and didn’t process the pain he was in. Aiden instead, looked at his partner that was lost in her own mind. The energy coming from Laurin was so beautiful. It was spiritual energy, from the people a mind controlled Laurin brought to the blood sucker and Aiden knew it. The spirits of those who died violent deaths were so strong. It made Aiden hungry.

Like a normal human’s `fight or flight` instinct, Aiden responded to his need for power and his body reacted. The vampire was too strong and he knew what he must do. Aiden, desperate grabbed the vampire’s arm and twisted it and slammed him into a wall. Strength Aiden didn’t know he had returned to him as he leapt over to Laurin.

Aiden’s eyes began to glow as he cradled his girlfriend in his arms. His veins bulged and seemed to crawl under his skin. The energy coming from Laurin was absorbed by Aiden until, her body went limp and the emissions of light ended. Aiden put Laurin down and turned to the vampire.

Aiden’s injuries were healed. His heart beat like a drum, the world seemed to slow around him and adrenaline flooded his body. Aiden’s mind went to somewhere primal, he felt like a passenger in his own body and loved how it felt. Aiden had no idea how many people the vampire had fed on in the week Laurin was under his influence. Aiden could hear them though. They whispered in the back of his mind as their essence turned into new found power.

The vampire lunged at, Aiden again. Aiden was faster. Aiden had caught the vampire by his hands and crushed them. Aiden then, with one step and speed that made him a blur to the young vampire slammed him into the same wall where, Aiden had been assaulted.

Aiden paused. With one hand he had pinned the vampire. Aiden relished the sight of this monster’s struggle. Aiden said, “Young vampire, I’m going to rip the wings off you.”

Aiden allowed a wave of vengeful intent from the spirit energy he absorbed to consume him, like diving into deep water. Aiden slowly separated the vampire’s right arm from his shoulder and shuddered at the sound of tendons and meat being separated. Aiden then went for the vampire’s other arm next. He squeezed it until the bones popped in his hand and its muscle tissues parted. The vampire’s arm went limp as Aiden dropped half of the limb on the ground.

Aiden grasped the vampire’s jaw with his free hand and held its mouth closed. Aiden said, “Stop me.”

Vampire struggled, his screams were muffled by Aiden’s hand as his grip grew tighter. The whispers grew rapturous. The vampire thrashed beneath his grip. Aiden was on a high from the power he had denied himself. Aiden like this, could not find the fault in his consumption and could not fathom coming down from this ecstasy.

Aiden felt the vampire’s teeth break and his jaw pop, Aiden continued, “Stop me from killing you, vampire!”

The vampire’s jaw splintered under Aiden’s grip before he let go. Blood fountained from the vampire’s mouth, its teeth fell and bone was held by hanging flesh. Aiden pressed the vampire harder into the wall, the sun light crept in through cracks that began to form in the wall. Wisps of smoke rose from the monster’s flesh as it had stopped struggling. The vampire was unable to scream, Aiden had collapsed his chest and pressed further into him. Terror filled its undead eyes.

The wall finally gave from the pressure and the sun gleamed upon the vampire and flames consumed him. The whispers from the spirits Aiden had consumed ended and Aiden backed away from the burning corpse at his feet. Aiden knelt at Laurin’s side and cradled her. Her face frowned and she began to awake.

“Did you kill him?” Laurin asked. Laurin embraced Aiden and held him tight against her chest.

“Yes.” Aiden said as he began to sob. For ten months, he had not fed. Like other vampire’s he needed to feed on the life force of other beings. It made him strong. It added to his immortal life span and made him a monster he hated all at the same time.

“I’m so sorry.” Laurin apologized, but more so to the souls she fed to Aiden. They would not see an afterlife, but they would have vengeance and it was the only way she knew would for sure free her from the vampire’s influence.

“I’m selfish, Aiden.” Laurin said as she took a deep breath to stifle a yawn.

Aiden mourned his ten months of progress. He had resisted his urge to feed on life’s energy to extend his own. Echoes of those he devoured haunted his mind, unlike the vampires that consumed blood. Each was a pang of guilt and a reminder of his inhumanity. Aiden had fed many times in the beginning after he was turned eighty years ago, when the world of fantasy became real.

End

SpareHeadOne - The Origin of Vampires

The Origin of Vampires

The story of vampires begins long, long ago, soon after the dawn of humanity herself. It begins with the story of two brothers. The younger brother Lebaa was a shepherd who kept flocks of sheep and goats, while the older brother Niaac, a gardener and farmer, cultivated the ground and tended the orchards. Niaac worked very hard; every day from dawn til dusk he toiled, digging and planting, weeding and slashing, pruning and harvesting, fencing and netting. There was little time for rest and recreation.

Over the course of time Niaac began to tire. He was still a young man by the reckoning of years but he had worn himself down with work and worry, he had burdened himself with responsibility and pressure. People had even began to ask if Lebaa was Niaac's son!

On the rare occasion that Niaac would raise his head and look up from his work, he would see Lebaa lying down with his sheep or playing with his goats in the fields which Niaac had had to fence off to stop the flocks coming in and eating the fruits of his labour. At first Niaac would laugh and shake his head at the sight of his brother, but in these later times Niaac had begun to feel jealous and taken advantage of, he had begun to despise Lebaa. An Evil One might say that Niaac's heart was ripe for the pickin'.

Niaac took to the forest to cut wood. As he worked he brooded and raged within about his lazy brother and his unfair life. The whole scenario had taken him over, it was all he could think about until...

..."Hhhh" Niaac inhaled. He was stunned, dumbfounded. A veil of awe and hazy forgetfulness enveloped him as he gazed upon the vision of a woman clothed with the forest. She stood at a distance, beckoning him seductively to come to her. He felt as if she was right next to him breathing sweetly on his neck and yet she was still at least a stone throw away. He could feel her all around him, embracing him and drawing him closer. He began to move toward her as if he was in a trance. Never once did he take his eyes off of her sublime beauty and as he stepped toward her, branches and roots moved out from in his way. The nearer he drew to her the greater he could feel the veil of her presence around him. Closer and closer he came to her. Feeling her magic, he began to realise that she was every woman he had ever loved, sister, lover, mother, prostitute, grandma, dancer, girl next door, aunty, crush. Every movement she made awoke desire within him, the desires a boy or man has for the women in his life. He wanted her in every way.

Finally she opened her arms to him and he fell into her and they held each other. She stroked his hair and comforted him. As he rested in her arms, he felt that he was going to cry, but before a tear could form she released him. There would be no healing in his heart.

"Come." She bade Niaac as she turned and began to walk toward the centre of the forest. Niaac followed closely, trying to touch her as they made their way through the forest. Turning back and seeing him, she smiled and held out her hand to him, hand in hand they made their way to the centre.

In the centre of the forest was a tree that was so tall that clouds formed around its foliage. It was so wide that it would take a hundred people holding hands to encompass its trunk.

"Come in." She bade Niaac as they reached the trunk of the tree. She then disappeared through a door way sized knot hole at the base. Niaac followed.

Upon entrance he saw her lying on a couch, welcoming him with a smile. Still in his trance he knelt down before her and she lay his head in her lap.

"You are tired my son." she said as she stroked him.

'Yes." he answered.

"You have worked hard my son."

"Yes."

"You have watched as others have benefitted from your work, while you continue to labour without benefit."

"Yes." And rage began to build once more in Niaac's heart.

"You grow old though you are young my son."

"Yes."

"You will die early and those who take advantage of you will inherit all you have worked so hard for. Is this what you will?"

"No."

"Then I will grant you youth and strength. Is this what you will?"

"Yes."

"Then I will grant you powers and immortality. Is this what you will?"

"YES!!!"

The hollow tree boomed and vibrated like a drum above them. The scratching and clawing of some immense creature.

"Come my son. Receive your reward." and she quickly led him through the rooms of the tree. Along the way she grabbed a large golden ceremonial vessel, a cup relieved with a serpent twining up a tree, rubies decorated the cup, a ruby for the fruit of the tree, rubies for the serpent's eyes and rubies as blood dripping from the fangs of the serpent.

They exited the tree out of another door sized knot hole in the back.

"Behold! She called to Niaac. My first son and my lover, Bonelya!"

Like lava from a volcano came Bonelya out of the top of the hollow trunk. Black and scaly, a slithering serpentine creature, yet with the wings of a dragon and though his head was scaled it bore the resemblance of a bat.

"Mo-Na you have decided to complete your journey!" Spoke Bonelya to the woman in a somewhat surprised tone."

"Yes my lover." She answered.

Mo-Na seemed as entranced by Bonelya's presence as Niaac was in her's.

"And who is this Mo-Na? Is this our son?

"Yes my lover."

"Then let us make the covenant." said Bonelya as he lowered his head down to Mo-Na.

Niaac was still under the enchantment of Mo-Na. He knew the great serpent was there and ordinarily such a sight would have him fearing for his life but his focus was on her and her alone. Her extraordinarily large breasts, plump and firm. Her hips wider than any he had ever seen, forming curves in her figure that no man could ignore. He watched as she drew a spile from the golden cup. Bonelya lowered his head to her a little more and she reached up to lift a scale on his neck. Niaac mused over her movements, so sweet, so sublte, like he could just sweep her off her feet, pick her up, passionately kiss her and she would feel safe in his arms. Then it all changed. Mo-Na thrust the spile into Bonelya's neck, a drop of blood hit the Earth and she woke from her enchantment. Suddenly Niaac's eyes were open. The forest instantly grew dark and he could feel the trees were dying slowly. Mo-Na turned the spile with its large auger like thread drilling into the serpent's neck. Another blood drop hit the Earth and Niaac noticed the flaws begin to show in Mo-Na and he knew that she too was slowly dying.

Mo-Na opened the tap on the spile and filled the cup with blood from the serpent. She turned to face Niaac holding the cup up high above her head. A terrible look on her face, her eyes piercing into his soul, a countenance full of power and resolve. Niaac felt as though the whole forest was focussed on him, ready to pounce on him and tare him to shreds if he set a foot out of line.

The Serpent Bonelya and the Woman Mo-Na spoke in unison "When you drink you will pour out a libation to Me."

Niaac stepped forward and accepted the cup from Mo-Na and took a sip of the Dragons blood. He woke soon after on the ground with blood all over him and all over the Earth.

"Thank you for pouring out such a generous libation, my son." They spoke as one.

Mo-Na was holding the cup once more above her head now looking dark and wicked as though she was about to kill Niaac.

"Drink my son." They encouraged.

Niaac took the cup once more and drank. With his first sip he felt his youth and strength return and he began to have many inspired thoughts, ways to improve his life and the lives of all those he loved. Encouraged by the results of his first sip he drank again only more deeply. Mo-Na and Bonelya looked on knowingly. Niaac felt power surge through his body, he no longer felt fear in the presence of the witch and the dragon. He began to feel as though he could over power them if he wanted to. His rage and his resolve, his will to enforce his will grew and as the power surged through him he began to rise up from the earth, levitating.

Arrogantly he lifted the cup to his lips once more, he was going to drink the last of the blood in the cup.

Bonelya rose up "Ignorant!" and struck Niaac with a powerful wing "Prig!!" Niaac hit the ground and without realizing it, transformed himself into a bat.

Blood from the cup hit the Earth and Mo-Na said to Niaac "Thank you for pouring out such a generous libation, my son."

As Niaac picked himself up off of the ground he realized his place within his new family, he was but a whelp compared to his new Mother and Father, he now knew the abilities his power afforded him.

What he did not know was that a great hunger would burden him for the rest of his life. This hunger would satisfy his Mother and Father while he would remain unsatisfied. In his hunger he would kill all of his brother's flocks and eventually he would kill his own brother and then thousands of innocents down the ages. What he did not know was that he himself was dead.

"Take this cup with you my son" they spoke "Build our family. Return when the cup is empty. Goodbye 'Son of the Dragon', Goodbye 'Draculaa'."

Cbishop - Family Drinks

Family Drinks

It was Halloween, it was time for me to find some blood, my family was up to their usual non-inclusive bull, and I just thought, "You know what? Enough." So I drained every last one of them like you might a twelve-pack after a shitty day of work, lopped off their heads, put them on spikes in the front yard, and handed out candy to the neighborhood kids all night, raking in the compliments on how "gross" and "lifelike" my Halloween decorations were. All of 'em: dad, stepmom, first brother, second brother, his wife, her sister (she was tasty), all five of their bratty ass kids, and that yappy little dachsund.

After all the trick-or-treaters had gone home, I siphoned the gas out of three of their vehicles, soaked said vehicles, the garage, the house, the corpses, and torched the whole shebang. Except for the heads. I left those for the cops so the bodies could be identified, because the sooner they identify them, the sooner they put the mess to bed. Oh sure, the news'll bring it up the next few Halloweens, but whatever. Maybe it's just that I'm a vampire, but I was honestly surprised that it didn't bother me. It was like just wiping away a bad memory. Even when it played all the next day on the news, I didn't regret it... much. I just turned the news off and went to the bar.

You wouldn't know the place. You know those miles of tunnels and built-over old city structure they talk about being under newer cities, where the homeless and junkies live? It's great for vampires trying to avoid the sun too. It's about two stories underneath the actual city proper, with a cop bar-and-grill at street level. So the bar I'm headed to is known to us Pipe Dwellers as Under Arrestaurant. Yeah, I know, it's terrible, but when you're living in a shithole with jerry rigged fans trying to move the air, you take your laughs where you can get 'em.

As I push through the swinging saloon-style doors and slink up to the bar, the bartender flicks his tongue and hisses amiably, "O Negative, Russsssel?" He hisses because he's a lizard man- the kind you hear about in conspiracy theories. He got his name from a comic of The Terrific Whatsit that hangs above his bar- his favorite comic character because he's a reptile like him, and a hero- the first that he knows of.

"Nah, Whatsit," I say with a wave as I reach the bar. "I'm full; killed the family last night. I'll just have a beer."

Whatsit just stares at me for a few seconds, tongue flicking in and out several times, and that scaly hide of his making his reaction inscrutable. Finally, his eyelids blink sideways, and he says, "We only have Zima."

"So you're out of beer then," I deadpan. "Just a Coke."

Whatsit puts a glass and a cold can of Coke on the bar for me, and a highball glass at the edge of his side for his tip. Both glasses are impeccably clean. How he does that in this inherently dirty atmosphere is a mystery, but not one anyone is interested in solving. I crack the top on the can, pour it into the glass, take a swig of the soda through the foam, and sit back and think about my night.

I really wish I hadn't had to kill my family. I mean, it's not like I'm going to miss them. They never called, never let me know about anything involving the kids, and were generally the least family-like family I could imagine. It was like draining any other nobodies as far as I'm concerned. Except for dad. He didn't deserve that, but he would have tried to stop me, because he was a good man like that, and I just wasn't having that last night. Plus sometimes I just get really pissed off at him for not standing up to that shrew of a second wife. Yeah, I regret killing him, but at least he'll have some peace from her now. Now, we all will. I just wish I hadn't had to kill them, because it's not the kind of vampire that I want to be. I was warned it might happen eventually though.

As I'm watching the foam finally subside in my glass, someone sits down beside me, and Whatsit slides him a drink without having to ask what he's having. "My friend," he says in some Old Country dialect that no one is quite sure of, "I see the news. You finally cut tides with family Stane. Is good." Vlad Oprica is the owner of Cafe Oprica- AKA Under Arrestaurant- and a vampire himself. Head of the Clan Oprica- all of them vampires- he's also rumored to be the one-and-only Dracula, mostly because his name is Vlad, like Vlad Tepes, or Vlad the Impaler. No one knows for sure, but as I watch him concentrate on pushing plastic swords through olives, I think that maybe they're right. His son, Romulus Oprica, is my sire. Only reason he did it was because I was interested in his sister, Adriana. I never have decided whether I should thank him or not.

"It's 'cut ties,' Vlad. Ties. And yeah, I guess it is good. Beats having to watch them die off over the next few generations." I raise my glass. "To the end of family lines."

"To the end of family lies," Vlad misquotes, raising his glass.

"That too," I say, clinking his glass with mine.

"Salud," he says, and we both knock our drinks back.

"Whatsit," I say, shaking off the melancholy, "give me a Zima."

After a long, stuttering hiss that passes for Whatsit's laugh, he says, "Ssssilly Sssstane, nobody has Zima anymore. I wassss pulling your leg. "Bud Light?"

"So you really are out of beer," I deadpan again. "Another Coke."

Vlad laughs loudly. Whatsit sets up another can and a backgammon board, and Vlad and I roll the dice to see who goes first, ready to wile the night away. Nice thing about being a vampire? You get to choose your family.

Batkevin74 - The N.A.T.U.R.E. of Vampires

No Caption Provided

The N.A.T.U.R.E of Vampires

Page 1

You tear open the crimson envelope with your name on it to find a yellowy piece of paper with beautiful calligraphy upon it. It reads “You have been chosen as a candidate for N.A.T.U.R.E the Nosferatu Academy of Training, Understanding, Research and Elimination. We are dedicated to removing the vampire threat on our planet and hoping you will become one of us. You will meet Mr Smith at the international airport tomorrow who will be waiting with a sign with your name on it. Bring your passport and come alone.”

The paper slightly shudders in your hand before bursting into flames, vanishing into smoke and ash leaving only the envelope with no return address.

Do you go? Turn to page 41

Do you stay? Turn to page 7

__

Page 41

You arrive early at the airport, unsure if this is all a prank but hoping that at least some of this mystery is true. The airport is bustling like a beehive. You wander through looking for a man you’ve never met holding a sign with your name on it. As you head towards departures you spot a roundish man of average height wearing sunglasses holding up a sign, your sign.

Do you go? Turn to page 33

Do you wait? Turn to page 32

Do you go home? Turn to page 99

__

Page 32

You loiter around looking for cameras, or your best friend Kim, who could’ve easily set this all up. But as time ticks by the man simply waits. Vampires, pfft, really. But it is something intriguing about the whole thing?

Do you go? Turn to page 33

Do you go home? Turn to page 99

__

Page 33

You approach the man and smile. He nods, folds the sign up and extends his hand.

“It’s nice to meet you, my name is Mr Smith. You have passed N.A.T.U.R.E’s first test by coming and coming alone. Well done. Now follow me past these mirrors, have to check you aren’t a vampire posing as you, and we’ll be off.”

You start to speak when Mr Smith stops, pulls off his glasses and looks you dead in the eye. “Yes, vampires a real. No, this isn’t a prank. We think you could be an asset to us which is why we contacted you. Yes, it’s a dangerous job. No, it doesn’t pay well but it’s quite exciting. Does that about cover it?”

You shrug. “I guess so…vampires?”

“I’ll fill you in on the plane.”

And for the next few hours Mr Smith explains all about vampirekind, what’s real, what isn’t, who N.A.T.U.R.E are and their history.

“Nobody knows when the first vampire arrived, but they’ve been around since Ancient Mesopotamia at least. They look human but they’re dead, no blood, no breath and for some unscientific reason no reflections. Exposure to sunlight will kill them, as will a wooden stake through the heart. Garlic and silver are just movie magic. Some can transform but usually only the European variety of vampire; African and Asian vampires can’t but they have other powers. Dracula is just a story, but a lot of vampires imitate the look as its cool, or at least they think so.

N.A.T.U.R.E was formed in 1887 by Johannes Halsingor whose wife, Elsbeth, was turned into a vampire. He loved her and didn’t want her to become a fowl creature of the night and she was also unhappy at her new transformed status. So, he locked her up and studied her with his friend from the University of Warsaw, Professor Lech Wallachia, learnt about the vampire. Sadly, it was not a happy ending as she killed them several years later as she’d gone mad from being in captivity, but from there the organisation grew and grew. Our headquarters is in Prague and we have locations across the globe because vampires always tend to move around.”

__

R.A. Montgomery stopped as he lowered the book, his round face confused. “Where is the rest?”

I shifted nervously in my chair. “Um, well…”

“We gave you a thirty-thousand-dollar advance for what, half a book?” He snapped. “Are you serious?”

“Mr Montgomery,” I started to explain but I was going to literally make it up. “The thing is…”

“You’ve spent the money and turned in half a book and hoping what, I don’t turn this over to the lawyers? Really Mr Kevin? This isn’t amateur hour!” He picked up the yellow phone on his desk. “Hello Maureen…?”

“I’m a vampire!”

He looks at me like I’m mental. “What?”

“I’m a vampire.”

He lowers the phone. “I’ve heard a lot of BS excuses in my life, but that has got to take the cake.”

I shrug. “I’m a vampire and I can prove it.”

He points behind me. “See behind you, it’s a mirror. I can clearly see your reflection. Also, vampires are fiction just like your tale about being a vampire! You can either leave or I can have security haul you out the building, up to you. But I will not waste any more time on you, the legal division of Batman Books can deal with you!”

I stand up, circle my hand and lock eyes with him. “You will drop the phone.”

“What are you doing?” He asks angrily.

“You are under my power,” I continue my charade.

“Maureen, get security up here. Mr Kevin is…”

I launch across the desk and grab the elderly writer by the collar, hauling him up and over the desk as if he was made of straw. He gasps, and then again as I sink my fangs into his neck. He struggles but I am way stronger. I take what I need and throw him back into his chair.

“You will feel ill for the next few days,” I tell him as I wipe my mouth clear of his juices. “I’ll feed off you again and then if I feed a third time you will become a vampire like myself. It isn’t all bad Mr Montgomery, you’ll see.”

He’s stunned, everything he ever believed has been shocked to the core and I’ve revealed myself as a vampire, but also as the amateur novelist I am.

“You will forget the book,” I tell him, looking deep into his eyes.

“You will forget the book,” he recites back obediently.

“Everything is fine.”

“Everything is fine.”

Security burst through the door on cue. “Mr Montgomery?

“Everything is fine,” he says to them. I smile and shake his hand before leaving, taking my poor attempt at writing with me.

“Goodbye,” I say and leave.

__

https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-authors/article/64786-obituary-r-a-montgomery.html

_

“Bastard!” I curse as I toss the obituary in the bin. “Another one drops off before I can turn him!”

“You’ll get there one day Master,” Igor, my faithful sycophant encourages. “Perhaps next time you’ll try my suggestion?”

“Alright, I’ll pay Tom Clancy a visit,” I tell him.

Remember: Votes due by Sunday, November 18th, @11:59PM Sydney, Australia time.

I'm glad you're here, and thanks for reading! -cb :^D

49 Comments

CCC #79 - Voting Thread

Thine thundergod is disappointed, mortals.
Thine thundergod is disappointed, mortals.

<sigh> Not gonna lie, I'm really disappointed. A handful of people expressed interest in this contest, and no one showed up... again... except Batkevin' and myself... again. This used to be fun.

Anyway, the voting rules:

The stories:

Batkevin74 - Lightning King

"Where is the one called Thor?" The man in bluish-white armour holding his katana aloft declared, peals of lightning danced from it that sent the busy New York street into chaos. Civilians fled, cars mounted the sidewalk to get away from the man tearing up the city.

"NYPD!" roared an amplified voice from a police cruiser. "Put the weapon down!"

"BAH!" The man pointed and lightning shot from his hand. The officers scattered as the massive blast exploded the car. "I will speak with Thor, and Thor alone!"

"THOU HAST MY ATTENTION!" Thor roared from above, his mighty weapon Mjolnir spinning above his head to slow his descent. The man watched the thunder god carefully. As Thor touched down the man took a knee and bowed.

"Kaminari-ō, Sūzanō no musuko!" He said solemnly.

"Rise and be recognised, Lightning King, the son of Susanoo god of the storm and sea," Thor replied in All-tongue. "The son of Odin greets you."

"You honour me, Odinson," Lightning King replied as he stood.

"Why dost thou threaten the Midgardians?"

"I was unable to reach the Eternal Realm to issue my challenge," Lightning King replied. "This seemed appropriate."

"Challenge?" Thor looked at him quizzically.

"If I am to ascend to the Eternal Chrysanthemum Throne to take my fathers place, I must be tested in battle," Lightning King said.

"If it is battle, then thou shouldst seek Hercules!" Thor laughed. "He doth crave battle for pure pleasure."

Lightning King shook his head. "I must battle one of the lightning, and add their power to mine."

"You seek to kill me?"

Lightning King nodded. "I take no joy in this."

Thor looked at Lightning King. "If thou raise..." Thor paused as Lightning King's katana came up to eye level. "Thou should rethink thine actions."

"I have no choice, Odinson. To fulfil my destiny and honour my father, you must die!" Lightning King stated as he dropped into a stance.

"Thou must know that I didst not come alone," Thor said as nodded behind Lightning King. He glanced over his shoulder to see Iron Man with his cannons ready, Hawkeye aiming a bow, Vision hovering above, Scarlet Witch readying a spell and She-Hulk cracking her knuckles.

"Say the word Goldilocks," She-Hulk said. "And we'll kick his tail til his nose bleeds."

"THIS IS HOW YOU HONOUR A CHALLENGE BETWEEN GODS!" Lightning King screamed and exploded a ball of lightning upon himself that radiated out like a bomb. Iron Man shielded Hawkeye as Scarlet Witch threw up a shield to protect herself and She-Hulk, Vision copping the brunt of the attack. "YOU MANGY CUR!"

"HAVE AT THEE!" Thor hurled Mjolnir only to watch it be deflected away by Lightning King's sword. The mighty mallet slammed into the forcefield erected by Iron Man sending him and Hawkeye who he was protecting flying. Lightning King leapt forward slashing his weapon.

"I must fulfil my destiny!"

Thor grabbed Lightning King by the wrists and summoned Mjolnir back to his hand. Sensing that an attack from behind was coming, Lightning King headbutted Thor cracking his nose and sending blood everywhere.

"That'll make a list on Buzzfeed," She-Hulk remarked to the reader. "Fastball special, Wanda!"

Scarlet Witch wove her hands like they were covered in taffy, ruby sparks and red energy spun through her hands as she magically lifted She-Hulk into the air and tossed her at Lightning King.

"How dost thou like it?" Thor remarked smashing his forehead into Lightning King's nose, with the same result. The Asian god staggered back to step into the path of the jade cannonball who smashed him across the street.

"I bet he gets up in two panels," She-Hulk stated as she brushed off debris.

"FACE ME LIKE A GOD!" Lightning King roared, a column of lightning ripping up into the darkening sky. "THIS IS MEANT TO BE A WORTHY CHALLENGE, NOT A BRAWL WITH YOUR PETS!"

"See, two panels," She-Hulk pointed out as she grabbed the bottom corner of the page. "Oh and there's more..."

Thor tackled Lightning King and the pair traded blows like schoolboys. Uru stone clanged with immortal steel showering sparks on every exchange.

"This is getting out of hand," Iron Man said. "Wanda, can you send our new friend somewhere."

"Anywhere you have in mind, Tony?" Wanda flexed her fingers.

"He likes to fight, why not send him to someone that needs a good kick up the tail," he said cheekily.

"I'm not sending him to Latveria!" Wanda declared.

"I WAS thinking somewhere else, but now you mention it..."

Lightning King's fingers struck Thor in the eye, which sent the thunder god backwards, leaving his throat exposed. The blade flashed and sliced low across Thor's neck. If he hadn't been moving back the attack would've decapitated him. Thor roared in pain and frustration and uppercut Lightning King in the jaw with Mjolnir sending him skywards.

"NOW!" Iron Man barked from the air.

Vision flew through the god intangibly, slight increasing his density to disrupt the god's nervous system. Lightning King yelped only to be hit in the face by a mace arrow courtesy of the world's best archer. Iron Man flew in and belted the god towards the ground, which put him on a path with She-Hulk who smacked him towards a glowing red portal created by the Scarlet Witch.

"NO!" Thor roared as he raced after his foe but it was too late, the portal winking out of existence. "WHERE DIDST THOU SEND HIM, WITCH?"

Wanda was startled by her teammates fury. "I sent him somewhere he can break whatever he likes and he won't cause any harm."

"WHERE?" Thor grabbed her by the shoulders.

"Remove your hands from my wife, Thor," Vision said as his hand latched onto Thor's shoulder. Thor unclenched his fists and looked down at the crimson curtain flooding down his chest and pooling at his feet.

"Od's...blood..." Thor went white and keeled over.

__

Lightning King stood on a bridge that bent like a corkscrew. The world around him could only be described as drug-adled hallucination given form. "THOR! SHOW YOURSELF!"

Upon the horizon he spotted a cloud of bat wings heading towards him. He raised his sword to call down the lightning but found that something was amiss.

"You shall pay for this, Thunder God!" Lightning King declared as he spun the sword in a circle. "First your pets for their insolence to touch me, then you for being an honourless dog of the lowest order! I shall fulfil my destiny!"

The cloud of wings came closer, a massive purple and green monster at the forefront.

Cbishop - White Lightning

White Lightning dropped the charred, smoking corpse of the banker he had just electrocuted for no other reason than the color of his skin. He took a sip of a clear liquid from the mason jar in his hand, and eyed the third teller. "Your turn," he sneered.

Thor was enraged as he landed, having responded to the distress call relayed from the bank to the police to Avengers Mansion. Knocking the bank doors out of their frames with one mighty blow of his fists, he roared, "What is the meaning of this!?"

"Thor!" declared White Lightning. "At last! The very symbol of the Aryan ideal! Have you come to join me on my quest to cleanse this planet of the foul waste in the human gene pool?" he asked, as he dropped to one knee, bowing before the god.

Thor raised an eyebrow. "Indeed I have," he said, motioning for the electrically powered bigot to stand. "I've only met a group with an agenda such as yours once before. They were called the Marauders, and they strove to end the 'mutie' population that swelled below these very streets."

White Lightning chuckled. "Sounds like my kind of people."

"Yes? And dost thou know what I did for their cause?" asked Thor, as he held his hammer out to his side, electricity crackling across the uru metal.

"What's that?" the man snickered.

Thor swung his hammer, caving in White Lightning's chest, and throwing him across the bank into the stone wall. As he looked on the fallen man, he seethed, "I ended it."

Remember: Votes due by Friday, October 12th, @11:59PM New York Time.

I'm glad you're here, and thanks for reading! -cb :^D

13 Comments

Artist Show-Off #166

Hey, all. I won the ASO 165 by default with a completely awful Octowoman picture, so here's your chance to take it back lol.

(Edit: My apologies- the Octowoman pic was supposed to be for the Character Creation Contest, and I posted to the wrong thread. I was declared winner-by-default though, so um... here we are.)

The theme this time is going to be a DC amalgam between Hawkman and Blackhawk.

Hawkman:

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Blackhawk:

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Deadline is 2 weeks- Friday, October 12th, @11:59pm New York time (click the link if you're unsure). I'm glad you're here. Have fun, and see you in two weeks. -cb

4 Comments