[LNHY/ACRA] The Daily Super Short-Short Story #43

Saxon Brenton saxon.brenton at uts.edu.au
Fri Oct 22 06:11:29 PDT 2004

The Daily Super Short-Short Story #43
A Devil Came Down to Georgia 25
Last time: The Banjo Duelling Kangaroos attacked.
     There were two kangaroos. And they were duelling with banjos. Most 
everyone else was trying to get out of their way.
     .oO( Well, everyone who has any sense, ) thought Martin as he tried 
to help bystanders to escape. The Kangaroos had that sort of effect.
     Most people fled. The Kangaroos were Just Too Darn Weird for most 
people to cope with - and apart from everything else their duels almost 
invariably had a video clip-like atmosphere that involved lots of 
pyrotechnics and explosions. But some people, some people just stopped 
and STARED. And an unlucky few were so overcome that they did the 
equivalent of dropping to their knees and drooling while their minds 
checked out to the Hotel California and never came back. Nobody knew 
where the Banjo Duelling Kangaroos came from, although rumours that they 
were escapees from the Grant Morrison run on the 'Doom Patrol' were still 
     Martin found one lady who was backed up against a wall, whispering 
"...not kangaroos... no, not kangaroos..." to herself. "Ms? Are you okay?" 
Martin asked, but she didn't seem to respond. He picked her up and 
bounded away, his leaps eating up several meters at a time. Under other 
circumstances he would have been revelling in that sort of physical 
achievement, but now was neither the time nor place for enjoying himself.
     Certainly Delroy had been pretty adamant that they should get the 
heck out of there, and had been quite incredulous when Martin had made 
his decision to stay and help:
     "You're not going to try and play hero, are you?" Delroy had said. 
"You've only just *gotten* a metahuman ability, and you have no idea how 
to use it, let alone whether it's going to be any good against *them*!"
     "I don't plan to tackle the Kangaroos," Martin had said with a touch 
of sullen resignation. "I'll just try and help people get out of the way 
until the Deadly Serious Squad or somebody turns up and deals with them."
     Delroy had given him a sardonic look. "So much for keeping a low 
profile, huh?" Delory hadn't failed to notice that Martin had pulled the 
hood of his sweatshirt up over his head once the two of them had left 
mutant town.
     But the comment had produced a useful outcome, as it had caused Martin 
to pause for a few seconds and try to morph his metal-alloyed body into a 
simulation of an anime battlesuit, complete with half face covering visor. 
He just hoped that in the stress of the moment he didn't inadvertently 
shift from a clean-cut looking rocketranger wannabe into a hideously 
deformed mutant of superhuman size and strength with metallic cancer growths.
     About the time he came to his third group of refugees, another costumed 
hero appeared on the scene. "Quickly, fellow doer-of-Good!" the man 
exclaimed, "Where are those fiendish Kangaroos?!"
     "That way!" pointed Martin.
     "My thanks!" he proclaimed in a stentorian voice, and strode forth. 
"Halt, musically malevolent marsupials! I, Exclamation!Master!, command 
you to desist in destroying the city!"
     The Kangaroos flinched, much to Martin's amazement. How did he do 
that? Did have some type of voice-of-command power or something? Then to 
his horror they turned their banjo playing upon the newcomer.
     Exclamation!Master! staggered back two steps from the combined force 
of the banjo playing. Nearby, a newsstand - which had so far avoided being 
destroyed by flying debris - collapsed. "Nay, I... will... not be driven 
away... by the likes of you!"
     Martin watched this with growing apprehension. He had no idea 
whether he had the wherewithall to go up against the Kangaroos, but he 
had a growing sense that he had to do something. Then, in a moment of 
inspiration, he lit upon the idea of a distraction. He scuttled around 
the perimeter of the battle, grabbed a piece of debris, and hefted it 
towards the Banjo Duelling Kangaroos, hoping to distract them for long 
enough for Excalmation!Master! to regain his equilibrium. Then he found 
them turning their attention to him!
     Meanwhile, Delroy was several blocks away, waiting and worrying about 
what trouble Martin might be getting himself into. He didn't notice the 
cloaked and hooded form of Tsurlich approaching until she put a hand on 
his shoulder. He spun around, immediately ion the defensive - this was the 
big city after all, and you could never be too careful.
     Tsurlich dropped the hood of her cloak, and Delroy's eyes bugged out 
as he got a look at her. Then he started to scream. They went totally 
unnoticed amongst the noise coming from the banjos.
Tomorrow: Unless I can think of something clever that will pad out the 
fight scene, Martin and Exclamation!Master! will probably run off the 
Kangaroos. And I guess I'll have to think up what Tsurlich has done with 
Delroy after she finished terrorising him...
The Daily Super Short-Short Story series created by Arthur Spitzer, and
used with belated permission. The Duelling Banjo Kangaroos are Usable 
Without Permission creations of Arthur.
That isn't the mainstream Looniverse Exclamation!Master! by the way. 
That's his heroic Looniverse Y counterpart from LNHY.
Contest results: Well, there was no particular *single* suggestion that 
excited me into incoherent gibbering, but after the extra time to think 
things over, it occurred to me that I could get a really creepy result if 
I took Jesse Willey's suggestion of an evil being made out of body parts 
and combine it with Martin Phipps's recommendation of sticking to the 
succubus. So, imagine for instance the situation where you've got some 
poor schmuck who's seduced and used (perhaps carnally, perhaps not) by this 
apparently beautiful woman - and then when she's finished with him she lets 
him see that in truth she looks like a *very* grotesque patchwork corpse, 
and his mind shatters. Or perhaps is shattered by her, using some sort of 
magic that uses his horror and magnifies it to insanity-inducing levels.
     Anyway. Thanks for all the feedback from everybody 
Saxon Brenton University of Technology, city library, Sydney Australia
     saxon.brenton at uts.edu.au
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