Startup Escalation 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Opposites .
Superhuman World 2010 is a work of fiction. The characters herein and the commentary about them should not be considered "real".
SUPERHUMAN WORLD 2010
What exactly is the opposite of nothing? Primal forces of the universe have chosen champions to find out. These forces are opposites themselves, as are their champions. Can all these opposites survive?
(signed) Wyatt Ferguson.
Can Unlikely Buddies Save Earth from the Abyss?
Gaia and Death met in a church in France to choose their champions. To any who looked at them, they seemed like nuns. No one disturbed them.
Gaia held up a tabloid newspaper and spoke: "Mine is life but carries death. Or fancies he does. And he did not come from me."
Death was silent. She simply pointed at a mosaic on the church floor.
"... I see. Yours is death but carries life. Or fancies she does. And she did not come from you. Appropriate. Let us proceed."
Gaia took a piece of clay from a pouch. She pressed it onto a picture in the newspaper, then peeled it off.
A duck was stuck to the clay - as though it had been peeled out of the picture! It stretched to duck size - and then human height! And it spoke: "&^@%ing Gak! Have I been kidnapped by super-penguins!?"
"You know better, comic bird. I am Gaia, Life Goddess of the Earth. My compatriot is..."
"&^@% me hard, I thought Gaia was the fabulous goddess of gays! But don't let that interrupt our relationship because I just know it will be fabulous. You may address me as Psychovant, Lord God of Duck Vengeance!" (See Related Story)
"Hardly. In Lord God terms, you are a minor demon in comic duck form."
"So if you're so damn holy and I'm so damn lowly, why you talking to me at all?"
"You and one other will now go forth into the realm of legends, to defend both Life and Death."
"Legends? What's this Realm of Legends crap?"
"All life has dreams, duckling. Those dreams get shared and then take form in legend. This new threat approaches from where the legends live. You have some bits of legend in yourself. That is why you will be one of our defenders."
"&^@%ing defend your own damn legendary selves. I'm gone... Gak!" As Psychovant the Duck turned to stalk off, Death touched him and pointed at the floor.
"God damn, lady, you're creepy. You saying I need to be six feet under?"
Death shook her head, then traced a line around the mosaic on the floor.
"Oh, I see. I admire the interplay of the different colored tiles and the devotion the architects obviously had, so I hope you don't mind if I express my appreciation in my own unique manner and SHOOT THE MOTHER&^@%ER UP!"
Psychovant pulled an impossibly large gun from under his wing, and shot a burst of fire at the floor. Dust rose - and took the form of a woman with a harp! As the woman solidified, Gaia said, "Your partner will be the Christian saint Cecilia."
Psychovant responded, "Oh, will she? I bring a &^@%ing big gun to this enterprise. What's she got?"
"She is legendary. Saint Cecilia is the matron of musicians in her belief system. She was put to death by burning. When that didn't work, she was beheaded. She preached for three more days, before my acquaintance finally took her." Gaia nodded at Death. "At the very least, Cecilia is durable."
"Oh? Let me tear her a new orifice to preach through!" Psychovant shot Saint Cecilia.
The saint bled. But she held out her arms, and without moving her lips finally spoke: "I forgive you."
"Oh yeah? Well..."
"No more words." Cecilia's harp grew to encompass her - and the duck! They all disappeared - to be replaced by an acoustic guitar with wings and a grin-shaped hole - with pointy teeth!
Gaia commented to Death, "Now we see how the opposition of our champions only enhances their commonality, especially when enhanced by the realm of legend they now enter. They now take the form of something they both believe in: a musical instrument.
"Now our champions go to face their true opposition. We shall observe."
The walls of the church faded to darkness. Gaia, Death, and the flying guitar remained. A dark shape approached them all.
"There. A little lost sliver of the personality of the Ultimate Darkness. Other Earths in other universes call these things Null or Void or Hunger, and have legendary battles to repel them. We shall soon see what battle occurs for us."
The winged smiling guitar flapped and strummed as the dark shape oozed around it. Gaia commented, "Darkness often overwhelms at first. The question is, shall our champions combine their strengths and shine through?"
Then the guitar reappeared, like a lighthouse through fog. The dark shape swarmed around it, but didn't obscure it. Then it receded, carrying the light.
Gaia concluded, "As we hoped. The spirit of Psychovant gives even Nothingness more than can be digested, and the soul of Saint Cecilia gives guidance toward the Infinite. Infinity is after all the opposite of Nothing. Those opposites will meet and work together, even as Cecilia and Psychovant did, and as you and I do."
"Opposites must never destroy each other."
Afterword by Wyatt Ferguson.
On the 30th of March 2010. a lot of people had dreams about a smiling winged guitar. At a game convention I was at, I saw role-players teaming up to portray that guitar.
Our Earth of the New Orbit has been having some unrest, as we head out toward the dark. But since the guitar flew, the unrest has taken a rest. (Oh, look, another opposite!) It looks like our universe might just be too silly for the forces of darkness to swallow.
I once went on my own mission for Gaia and Death. My special relationship with them didn't last very long. So I don't think the relationship between Saint Cecilia and Psychovant is going to last very long either. But long enough may be good enough.
These credits were fun to write...
The Superhuman World website now works with concepts from the Usenet group rec.arts.comics.creative. "Opposites" arose from Andrew Perron's challenge for Contest #8: "Write a story about a protagonist coming into conflict with an antagonist who is somehow their opposite." This should do.
Who knows how many companies have tried to trademark Nothingness? "The Void", "The Hunger", and "Null the Living Darkness" are all characters of Marvel Comics. "The Darkness Before Creation" is a character of DC Comics, and if it ever shows up in a movie, Alan Moore will loudly not take credit. Gaia (not Gaea), Death, and Saint Cecilia are all public domain. But at least Psychovant the Duck and the phrase "Superhuman World 2010" are copyright © 2010 by Eiler Technical Enterprises. I wanted to use The Elf With A Gun, but Marvel owns that one too, and it's more fun to write Psychovant anyway. The map of the Superhuman World is based on one from Henry Bottomley's map software which is well worth a visit.
On a personal note, I don't think the relationship between Saint Cecilia and Psychovant can last long in any world. But long enough sometimes has to be good enough.
(signed) Scott Eiler, 10 April 2010.