LNH: War Without Worlds #1

Jamas Enright thad at eyrie.org
Mon Oct 31 00:43:54 PST 2005

Blue Light Productions presents...

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     [The cover shows all seven continents of the Looniearth,
      bestrode by a giant colossal figure akin to a pottery
      version of a man. Only in purple.]

                     "Opening Salvo"
           by Jamas Enright and Saxon Brenton

Pluto. Gateway to the scenic Earth solar system, and first stop for any
space-faring species that crosses the Kuiper Belt. Pluses: Cheap real
estate. Minuses: Out of the way location.
      And lack of atmosphere.
      It was this last point that worried Barry Knewbee (otherwise known
as the Net.Elementalist of the Alt.Riders), in so far as he had time for
worry, what with the lack of atmosphere and everything. He had
materialized here after a quick trip through various newsgroups [As seen
in _The Alt.Riders #41_ - Footnote Girl], but hadn't planned for this
      Hence the worry over the lack of air.
      But this did mean he was in a perfect position to see a hole rip
into spacetime before him, above the planet's surface. With a sound that
sounded disgustingly like someone blowing their nose, something large
appeared. [Yes, I know there's no atmosphere, but we're being dramatic
here, okay? Don't look at me. I didn't write this. - Footnote Girl]
Something very large. Something so large that, basically, it could
easily be called another planet, especially compared to Pluto (although
that wasn't hard, as Pluto fans had found out recently when confronted
with some items in the Kuiper Belt). This planet didn't look like
anything made from the long gravitational process applied to dust and
motes of space.
      For a start, the surface of this planet was purple. With swirling
pink colours fluorescing across it. And splashes of bright green and
yellow danced upon the face as well. Dude, it was a trip all in itself.
      Not that Barry was able to appreciate this, as he was nearly dead. 
The last thing he noticed, as his body spasmed from lack of oxygen was a
flash of something blue.
      And then the next thing he noticed was being able to breath. Not
well, but some kind of thin atmosphere surrounded him, giving him just
enough to wheeze and gasp.
      He looked up to see a small blue girl beside him. Something about
her looked a little familiar, but right now his mind wasn't in the best
state to form cognitive thoughts.
      His sight was dragged back to the planet, the surface colours
hypnotically drawing him in, gaining a hold on his mind, smearing his
thoughts across a thousand neurons...
      Barry wasn't sure if it grew, or swung around from another side of
the planet, ...or if he was just going insane..., but somehow the planet
had a nose. A standard triangular affair, two holes at the bottom,
rounded at the sides and everything. The odd thing about it was that it
was a nose on the planet. A planet-sized nose. And if that wasn't bad
enough it looked to be sniffing!
      Barry managed to lurch to his knees, his hand now on the blue girl
for support, her strangeness forgotten in the face of this far larger
      What was that coming out of the nose? A long tube...which had white
and red stripes curling up along it. It was like some kind of gigantic
straw, but that was impossible...wasn't it? Then again, he was looking
at a planet with a nose.
      The straw extended until it hit the planet's surface. Although it
wasn't directly beside him, Barry could feel the impact of it as it
shook the ground beneath him.
      There was a pause, and then the nose started trembling, but not as
much as Barry was right then. It took a moment for Barry to realise that
he wasn't trembling in fear, but because the planet was shaking.
      In fact, more than shaking. It lurched underneath him, sending
Barry sprawling again (although the girl wasn't affected in the
slightest). This was no ordinary planet-quake, something far more
fundamental was happening here. But it wasn't until the ground near him
collapsed that he worked out what was going on.
      The end of the straw was revealed, as a large lump of the planet
was drawn into it. More than drawn, it was sucked in. As were other
parts of the planet. Up and along the straw and into the nose!
      Pluto was being destroyed and...inhaled...by this other planet!!
      And he was still on it!!!


The sun beat down on the bare fields near Sa.LAN.ca, Spain. Wind barely
made any impact on the heat, and the few locals worked at a casual pace,
waiting for the sun to subside before any real effort could be made.
      The few who saw the lightning bolt rent the air could scarcely
believe their eyes. Did this mean rain? But the ones even closer to the
touch down point knew better. This didn't mean anything good at all.
      The figure was cloaked in purple, with blue piping, a short red
cape covering its shoulders. What skin could be seen was rock-like,
grey, hard looking. There was a rumble that echoed whenever it moved. 
And move it did. It stood up.
      The onlookers had to crane their necks to see the top of it.

Outback Alt.stralia was covered in darkness, the sun having departed
quite some time ago. Not that that stopped the desert life, now free
from the oppressive heat, creatures scuttled back and forth across the
sandy rocks, seeking food and water.
      Aborigines tended fires, but mostly slept. There was nothing here
they weren't used to.
      Until the lightning bolt struck. The night was clear, so none of
them could see where it came from, but they could see what it left.
      The figure stood, in purple and blue, ashen features looking
stoicly at the land before it.

Las Vegas was the town that never slept, so there were many people up in
the early hours of the morning. However, as they were nearly all inside,
or staggering blearily from one place to the other, none of them saw the
lightning bolt that struck outside of town.
      Not that many of them would have noticed anyway, the garish lights
and bright colours of Las Vegas being far more impressive than anything
nature could create.
      No, the first sign the populace got of the new figure that had
joined them was the earthquake it caused by punching the ground.


"Woah!" California Kid nearly fell off his chair as the LNH monitoring
board lit up in bright flashing colours. "Like, off the scale, dude." He
scrambled to silence alarms and bring up relevant information.
      "Lightning? Earthquakes? Major bummer, dude." Paging through
screens, he ordered up satellite imagery to see what help was needed. 
After the Asian Tsunami and Hurricane Katrina, the LNH was ready and
eager to help out again when natural disasters struck.
      But when the first photos started appearing before him, California
Kid couldn't help but glance nervously at the phone, then over to the
clock on the wall. Man, he hated to wake the ninja at this time of
night, but he hated worse what would happen if he didn't wake him up.
      More information poured in, and California Kid's eyes widened as he
realised the full extent of the attack, and attack it was. Alt.stralia,
Af.rec.a, Ant.alt.ica, the southern and northern Ame.rec.as, Eur.io.pe
and Alt.sia...all continents had received a visitor, and now...
      California Kid snatched up the phone with one hand, and slammed the
other on the 'Emergency Alert Big Red Button' button, activating klaxons
and circling red lights all through-out the LNHHQ.
      "Dude, dude, dude," he said into the phone, but couldn't hear what
the Ultimate Ninja said in return (which was something of a blessing). 
"Dude, better get up here, dude."
      Before even the ninja could arrive other LNHers started grouping in
the monitoring room, asking confused questions and generally not getting
anything done with all the cacophony.
      A throwing star smacked into the main control board, cutting off
the sirens, but leaving people's ears ringing. The LNHers parted to
reveal the Ultimate Ninja standing in the doorway. "What's going on?"
      California Kid pointed to the board. "It's a full scale attack,
dude. All across the world."
      The UN strode to the world map, his eyes taking in the information. 
"Right, get LNH Europe to Spain, see if LNH Canada can hop over to
Alt.sia. Get List Lad to form up some teams and get them out there."
      The room was still in the wake of the orders.
      "Now, people!"
      The room was still in the wake of everyone suddenly disappearing to
be somewhere else.
      Except for two people who strode in.
      "Ultimate Ninja, we've got to talk."
      California Kid, still at his station, flicked his eyes over to see
the Net.Elementalist standing there with some weird looking naked blue
kid beside him. Was that his daughter or something?
      "Net.Elementalist," the Ultimate Ninja said, barely looking around. 
"I need someone with your power on one of the teams. Perhaps
Alt.stralia, you're from near there, aren't you?"
      "Well, New Zealand, but...listen, Pluto's gone!"
      "I have rather more serious concerns than missing dogs," the UN
      "No, the planet!"
      This stopped both California Kid and Ultimate Ninja. "What?"
      "There was this other planet. And then Pluto was...sucked up into
      The Ultimate Ninja sighed. "I don't have time for this," he said. 
"In case you haven't noticed, we're under attack at the moment. I think
that's rather more important than something happening to one of the
outer planets."
      "Fine, then I'll get someone else to take care of it," the
Net.Elementalist replied, turning around.
      "No, I need you in Alt.stralia! Net.Elementalist!...Barry!" But by
that time, the Net.Elementalist was gone. "Fine!" The UN swung back to
the board. "I want teams of at least seven fighting these things. They
look big, and we have no idea how much power is needed to take one down. 
Get List Lad on it."
      "Sure thing, UN, dude," California Kid responded, then paused. "And
      California Kid wasn't sure but he almost thought he detected the
ninja's eyes flicking after the Net.Elementalist. "If he can find some
people to spare, send a space.thingee to look into it." As California
Kid nodded, the UN added quickly, "but only three people. We're going to
need everything down here."


The frigid wastes of Ant.alt.ica spread out around the looming figure. 
Cold wind blew harshly, but didn't effect it at all. The whiteness
reflected solar rays, blindingly, but again without any effect.
      There was a momentary extra flash of light, then a group of
superheroes stumbled onto the ice. "^*(&!" one immediately swore. "It's
@%&#ing freezing!"
      "This is Ant.alt.ica," another pointed out. "Tendency to ice and
sub-zero temperatures."
      "Fahrenheit or Celsius?"
      "First one, then the other."
      "*sigh* I can't believe I walked into that."
      "I say, he looks like a dreadful blighter."
      "I would have to agree, old chap."
      "Shut the $&#* up!" Innovative Offensive Boy spun around on his
teammates. "The first thing is containment! Captain Napalm, Invisible
Incendiary, front and center. Surround and contain."
      "At once!"
      Captain Napalm took to the air, immediately sending out rays of
fire to strike the ice near the figure, but nothing else happened.
      "II? Where are you? He came with us, didn't he?"
      There was silence, which was broken after a moment by Fourth Wall
Lass. "He's over there," she replied. "I can see his thought bubbles."
      "Hey! I wasn't thinking!" replied Invisible Incendiary.
      Fourth Wall Lass smirked. "I'll say."
      "All right, all right..." Another burst of flame exploded and soon
the giant figure was surrounded. Not that it seemed to notice.
      "Doctor, any ideas?" IO Boy asked.
      Doctor Stomper was studying the ground. "I think we should have
waited a little to see what exactly it was up to."
      "A bit late now for that @#*(ing advice, isn't it?"
      Doctor Stomper reached down and felt the ice. "It's not noticing
the flame, is it? It's just doing...well, whatever. I think we should
find out what that is. After all, it's not going anywhere."
      IO Boy sighed. "Fine. Captain Napalm, Invisible Incendiary, stand
down. Nomex Man, you're up."
      "Stand back." Nomex Man walked up to the wall of flame, treading
careful to avoid falling over on the already melting top layer, and then
stepped into the flame. After only a moment, the fire around Nomex Man
went out, and like a breath of wind the nearby fire fluttered, then went
out, racing around the circle that had just been created, until only
Nomex Man was there.
      Doctor Stomper nodded. "Why's it touching the ground like that?"
      The group stared at the figure intently. It was kneeling down to
touch the ground with its hand. In fact, staring closer, they were able
to make out that the hand was surrounded by a faint purple glow.
      "Fourth Wall Lass? Can you read anything?"
      Fourth Wall Lass concentrated for a moment, then shook her head. 
"Nothing. No thought bubbles. No captions. Perhaps I might be able to
look a few panels ahead and see if it does anything soon?"
      "Fine. Meantime, let's see if we can...push it over or &*## it up
or something." IO Boy rubbed his hands. "Mainstream Man, give it a
      "What? Me? Why? I'm only up to page 14 on the latest Man of Steel."
      "Oh for @*(#'s sake..." IO Boy walked carefully over the melting
ice and kicked the figure in the boot. Nothing happened, Nothing
continued to happen as IO Boy walked around, alternatively punching and
kicking the figure in various places. "It's like it's made of rock or
      "This is a big waste of time," Invisible Incendiary muttered,
although loud enough for people to hear. "So glad we came down here."
      "Um..." Doctor Stomper tapped his foot, watching a puddle of water
splash under his shoe. "Has anyone noticed that the water's still-"
      "Fly!" Fourth Wall Lass shouted, reappearing. "Fly now!"
      The purple around the figure's hand suddenly exploded brightly, but
the heroes had other things to worry about as the ice they were standing
on shattered, sending them all falling downwards into the even more
freezing sea.


The giant that had materialized in the middle of Alt.stralia had done so
near, but not at, Uluru, and was now slowly walking across the moonlit
landscape towards the huge red monolith. For some reason that probably
had more to do with building narrative tension than common sense it had
arrived on the far side of Yulara - meaning that it had to pass through
the sleeping resort town, endangering tens of thousands of locals and
tourists. Fortunately the Legion was there to deal with the situation.
      "You know," said Mouse, "It's amazing that they sent all the
Net.Zealanders they had on a mission into the middle of the Alt.stralian
      "Not really, dear," replied Writers Block Woman. "They didn't send
any of the kiwis," she pointed out, referring to the hordes of small
green flightless birds with hairy feathers that had set up house in the
LNH-HQ. "And it's not as though they have that many Alt.stralian members
left now that Chinese Guy's gone," she added, raising her voice a
      "I would have thought you'd say that even one was one too many,"
said Mouse, matching her increase in volume.
      "He was a perfectly nice young man," Writers Block Woman said
      "You only stopped distrusting him when you found out that his
nickname of 'Cultural Cringe Boy' meant that he hated Steve Irwin as
much as you did," shouted Mouse.
      "I fail to see what that has to do with anything," screamed Writers
Block Woman. "And do you have to make so much NOISE!?" she yelled at
Liefeld's Porpoise, who was having great fun blasting at the giant with
his BigGun.
      "Sorry, what did you say?" asked Liefeld's Porpoise in the sudden
silence that fell after he stopped firing. "I couldn't hear you over all
the noise."
      The cybernetically enhanced dolphin grinned. Well, dolphins were
very good at grinning - but at the moment he was grinning from the
adrenaline rush of repeatedly blasting at something with impunity.
      Mouse squinted at the giant figure. "Has all that shooting actually
done anything?" she asked. "I mean, apart from very efficiently waking
everybody so that they can stumble about in their pyjamas, ineffectually
trying to evacuate?"
      "Hmm. Kind of hard to tell with all that dust adding to the
darkness," admitted Liefeld's Porpoise.
      There was bleep from the comm.thingee. "Ordinary Lady to Writers
Block Woman, do you read?"
      "Yes dear, we're all here," WBW trilled.
      "How are things going for blast damage?"
      "Hard to say, really. All we can really tell is that it hasn't
taken enough damage to fall over yet."
      "Well, it's getting closer to town. We should move on to Plan B."
      "Roger that," said Writers Block Woman. "I'll bring Liefeld's
Porpoise and meet Bladed Lad and yourself at the giant. Over." Then she
looked at the dolphin. "You have all your equipment ready?"
      "Definitely," he grinned.
      Mouse sighed. "I'll go and help Frothing-At-The-Mouth Lad with the
evacuations." She reached for her hip flask and was about to take a sip
when she stopped and stared at the container in her hand. "Nggahhh!" she
yelled, and threw it away.
      "What is it, dear?" asked Writers Block Woman.
      "Something wrong?" said Liefeld's Porpoise.
      "A hip flask!? A fricking HIP FLASK!?" ranted Mouse, ignoring them. 
"One little reference to drinking during the 'Happy Families' arc and
now I'm an alco!? Screw you, Mister Big Shot Writers. You want to make
wild extrapolations of characterization based on off-hand comments, then
go and do it with someone else!"
      <shrug> Okay.

      A while ago, back in Net.ropolis:
      "Where in Net.Hell are my socks?" demanded Frat Boy.
      Frank stuck his head around the corner from the kitchen. "What are
you complaining about?"
      "My socks! I know I dumped them here somewhere. I can always find
them at home!"
      Frank O'Malley wandered in and across to the opposite side of the
room, where he picked up the offending pair of socks from where they
were lying in a bookshelf and handed them over. "You're a slob, man."
      Frat Boy scowled. "This from guy who wears the same unwashed
wrestling leotards to his matches for a whole week?"
      "Hey, I'm a jock," said the big redhead with the build of a sumo. 
"People expect that sort of thing from a guy in my position. But you,
you're a net.hero, and you've got a different set of expectations to
uphold," he told Frat Boy as the latter struggled to finish putting his
shoes on. "Now get moving. You've got a world to help save," he said,
giving Frat Boy an affectionate hug and then pushing him out the door.

      The Legionnaires stared at the flashback scene. Mouse said in a
perfectly neutral tone, "Tom Russell is absolutely going to kill you for
bringing back that plot thread, and all the talking gorilla stories in
the world aren't going to save you. You do realise this, don't you?"


The bright lights of Las Vegas played faintly over the giant figure, and
caught in momentary flashes the superheroes that were fighting it.
      "WHY WON'T YOU GO DOWN?" asked CAPTAIN CAPITALIZE as he crashed
into the figure, barely making it rock on its heels. It responded by
trying to swat at the hero, who managed to duck out of the way at the
expense of getting another shot in.
      "Anything?" Fearless Leader asked, backing away, and trying to line
up another bazooka shot at its foot, hoping that accumulative damage
might eventually take effect.
      "Nothing. There's something...strange about it," Fuzzy replied,
keeping well back. "Occultism Kid, anything on your end?"
      "I'm afraid not. My magic isn't having the right effect on it,"
Occultism Kid responded.
      "Oh really?" asked Limp-Asparagus Lad, attempting to reduce the
damage the figure was doing by reducing the drama of its attacks. "That
sounds rather unusual. What sort of effects were you thinking of?"
      "Now isn't the time, Limpy," Squeaky Clean responded. "That thing
will start destroying Las Vegas in about five minutes, and we don't seem
to be having any impact on it."
      "Hey, don't worry about it. This is #$*(ing Ame.rec.a, and nothing
messes with my country," Obnoxious Ame.rec.a Boy replied. "This is the
best #(*(ing country in the entire *($$ing world, and once we beat this
thing, you can bet that we'll be able to show everyone else how to do
it, and easily, because we're so wonderful."
      The ground under the figure shook, then melted, the figure's feet
sinking in about a meter...leaving several meters of foot above the
      "Nuts," said OK quietly as the figure simply strode out of it.
      "Fire in the hole!" Fearless Leader shouted, then looked away as
the missile shot out and impacted the figure's leg, with as much success
as previously. "Not even a burn mark."
      "It's as if it's not really there," Limp-Asparagus Lad mused as
CAPTAIN CAPITALIZE flew in again. "We can see it, but can't harm it. 
Maybe as illusion of some kind?"
      "Of course! That makes sense!" Occultism Kid yelled.
      "Not really," said Squeaky Clean, pulling Fuzzy out of the way as a
giant foot crashed down where she had just been standing. "What does
that mean?"
      "There's a spell I want to try, but if it works it'll only be for a
moment. But for me to cast it, we need that thing to stay still."
      "Sure, no problems, I'll just ask it to wait, shall I?" Fearless
Leader said, but already looking around for some way to get what
Occultism Kid asked for.
      "Leave it to me. I am an Ame.rec.an, after all," Obnoxious
Ame.rec.a Boy said. He walked out in front of the path of the figure. "I
said, I AM AN AME.REC.AN," he yelled at the figure. "AND YOU WILL STOP
      And stop the figure did. But mainly because CAPTAIN CAPITALIZE and
Limp-Asparagus Lad hit it with a a double flying punch that managed to
knock it off balance.
      But off-balance it was, giving Occultism Kid the time he needed to
fire off his spell.
      The spell hit, and the figure was outlined in purple energy, which
grew brighter, then the figure seemed to waver, as if in a heat field,
before flattening into a two dimensional image that hurt the eyes of the
heroes looking at it.
      But it only last a moment, and then the figure was back to normal,
and this time Squeaky Clean had to pull Obnoxious Ame.rec.a Boy out of
the way. "Hey, get your hands off me, I'm an Ame.rec.an!"
      "Did you find out what you needed to know?" Fearless Leader asked
Occultism Kid.
      Occultism Kid nodded slowly. "But you're not going to like it."
      Fearless Leader winced at the crashing sound that accompanied the
sight of the figure walking into the first hotel in its path. Glass and
metal bent and shattered around it, screaming people filled the air, but
there was no sign this was in any way slowing down the figure.
      Squeaky Clean, CAPTAIN CAPITALIZE, Limp-Asparagus Lad and Obnoxious
Ame.rec.a Boy ran after it as Fearless Leader spun on Occultism Kid. 
"That's going to happen a lot more unless we stop it. What's going on!?"
      "It's not really real," Occultism Kid replied. "It's more...like a
kind of projection...of the mind."
      "What? There isn't a mind there," Fuzzy interjected. "If there was,
I could affect it!"
      "It's...like psychic energy given form, a physical shell so it can
interact with this world."
      "How do we stop it?" Fearless Leader asked, as calmly as he was
capable of at the time.
      "I'm not sure we can..."


"Report!" Ultimate Ninja barked, causing the figures in the monitoring
room to jump.
      "We've got engagements on all continents," wReamhack reported. "But
no reports of success yet. We've lost contact with our teams in Alt.sia
and Ant.alt.ica."
      "Ready back up teams," the ninja ordered. "Whatever's going on, we
need to know about it now!"
      "I, List Lad, am on it," List Lad replied. "But...well..."
      "Well...it's not like we've got a lot of heavy hitters on these
teams," List Lad replied. "No-one's seen Kid Kirby, and most of the back
ups could, well...cook us a nice meal rather than take on city
      "We are all LNHers," the ninja said. "We'll do what it takes. 
Reestablish contact now, and if you can't get through, send in
      "Dude!" California Kid called out. "The dudes in Vegas, like,
called in, man. They say these things are some kind of psychic beings,
dude. Like, wow."
      "Psychic? Get Psionic Lad up here, pronto."
      "Oh no..."
      "What is it?"
      "Ant.alt.ica," wReamhack replied. "I was scanning the area,
and...there's a hole in the middle of it."
      "Like it's been melted. Right where that thing was. And it's
getting bigger. If this keeps up...the southern hemisphere is going to
get rising waters soon, and we're not going to be far behind."
      "Just what the hell is going on around here?"


"C..C..Cold," Fourth Wall Lass managed to stutter out, not able to
achieve more than a doggy paddle.
      "Captain Napalm will get us out shortly," Doctor Stomper replied,
keeping pace with here. "Yes, it's not warm, but not freezing."
      "Fe..Feels freezing to me," Fourth Wall Lass replied.
      "No, it's warmer than it should be. Ah, here you go."
      Fourth Wall Lass gratefully sagged in Captain Napalm's arms as he
lifted her free of the water, just managing to hold on as he flew up out
of the newly created well and onto the sheet of ice that surrounded
them. The rest of the team was already there, standing as close as they
could tolerate to Invisible Incendiary, who was providing them with much
needed warmth.
      "Will he be all right?" Fourth Wall Lass asked, shivering.
      Innovative Offensive Boy looked up from where he was kneeling by
Mainstream Man. "The shock of the water knocked him out, but he'll be
fine. But we've got worse *(##ing problems."
      "Worse? Than this?"
      "How far away is the edge?"
      Fourth Wall Lass turned and judged. "About twenty meters, why?"
      "It was forty when we were pulled out," Nomex Man said.
      "How's that possible?"
      "That thing is still melting the ice, but now it's in the deep."
      "And still capable of doing that?"
      "I think we have a problem!" Doctor Stomper called out, as he
crested the rim, courtesy of Captain Napalm.
      "We #$&*#ing already know!" IO Boy called back. "Any #*#ing ideas?"
      As soon as he landed, Doctor Stomper was at II's side. "We know
where it is. It's just a matter of getting to it and stopping it."
      "If that's so easy, I'll go home now then," II said, his voice weak
from the continual output of his powers.
      "Where is the #(#$er?" IO Boy asked.
      "Straight down. I doubt the currents could effect it, so it would
just drop. And that expanding pool is still centered on the right
      "Shouldn't we move?" Fourth Wall Lass asked, looking at the rim,
which was now only ten meters away.
      "No," IO Boy replied. "We have to ($#(#ing take it out here and
      "Doc, you said it goes straight @)@@ing down. Until it hits the
!_($#ing sea floor, yes?"
      "Should do."
      "And what if we crack the sea floor?"
      "Huh? How?"
      "Never @)#)#ing mind that, what then?"
      "It would continue to sink down...until either the lava or pressure
or something destroys it."
      "Then that's what we (@(@ing do. Would you say the floor would be
)#(#ing frozen?"
      "What? No, water is densest at four degrees Celsius, which is how
fishes and such can survive cold winters. Four degrees is about as cold
as the bottom of the sea gets."
      "Would fire crack it )@)(#ing open?"
      "It...might do..."
      "Then I have a _#(#ing plan."
      "How do we get down there?"
      "Not us. Just two. One to _#)#ing drill a hole through the water,
the other to #)($ing drill a hole in the floor."
      "You can't be serious!"
      "Doctor, we have no @)#*$ing communications at the moment, no
(*$#ing idea what the rest of the LNH is up to, and if we don't do
any-#$*$ing-thing about this, what will happen?"
      "If the water keeps melting? Tides will rise, and..."
      "The rest of the *$#(%ing world floods. We are not ($*#ing having
that again." IO Boy turned to the others. "II. Captain Napalm. I need
you to )(#*$ing do something."


As Mouse and Frothing-At-The-Mouth Lad continued to coordinate the
evacuation of bewildered and be-pyjamaed tourists, the other
Legionnaires directed Plan B against the giant.      After the long
range attack by Liefeld's Porpoise's BigGun had proven futile, the
Legionnaires had shifted tactics to try something more up close and
personal, and were currently engaged in enthusiastically trying to chop
the giant's leg off. Between the deadly swordsmanship of Ordinary Lady,
the monofilament cutter attachments that Liefeld's Porpoise had produced
from his toolkit pouches, and the wickedly sharp implements that Bladed
Lad (another of the aforementioned natives of Net.Zealand) had morphed
his hands into, they actually seemed to be having some success.      Of
course, this was difficult to carry out while the giant figure was on
the move, but fortunately Writer's Block Woman was doing a sterling job
of distracting the entity. The net.heroes had discovered early on that
the thing had no mind, and was therefore immune to both her powers to
sow confusion and indecision and Frothing-At-The-Mouth Lad's abilities
to overwhelm with diatribes about ill-considered comic book stories. But
it seemed that it could still react to certain stimulations:     
"Neener neerer neerer, you fiendish extraterrestrial juggernaut!  You
can't catch me!" WBW taunted as she flitted about in the air before its
face, and then ducked aside to avoid the giant's rather clumsy attempts
to snatch at her. "You'll have to better than tha-aat!" she sing-songed.
     Writer's Block Woman buzzed around the side of the giant's head,
trying to keep its attention. This seemed to be going well overall. How
fortunate that this creature had such a limited attention span that it
couldn't walk and chew gum at the same time. Or walk and swat heroes, as
the the case may be. A ways below her she could see the moving flashes
of light that marked where the headset lamps of the other three
Legionnaires were. She hoped they were doing well. "No," she told the
giant, "Pay attention to *ME*!"
       "How are we going?" asked Bladed Lad. Actually, he had a pretty
good idea that they were inflicting serious damage on the giant, because
by this time it was no longer focusing its attention solely on Writer's
Block Woman. Instead they had their work cut out for them as they had to
dodge about in the air with the personal flight.thingees that they'd
been issued with, ducking away to avoid the attempted swats of the giant
and then back in to inflict another hasty incision or two. The latter
wrinkle was a somewhat gruelling task for Bladed Lad, since he hadn't
logged in much flight training time. Thank goodness the three of them
had a skilled natural flier in Writer's Block Woman providing cover for
       "We're getting there," replied Ordinary Lady. "Although some of
the the cuts are beginning to seep some sort of purple Kirby-dot
       "Do you suppose it's some sort of energy creature within a shell?"
asked Liefeld's Porpoise.
       "Could be," said Ordinary Lady. She glanced about at the lights of
the town. They had lured it to a football oval on the outskirts of
Yulara, and while Writer's Block Woman was keeping it mostly occupied
they had begun their drawn-out assault of trying to cripple it. Ordinary
Lady weighed the situation and said, "We'll need to lure it further away
from town in case a breach in its exterior somehow causes a dangerous
leak, or even an explosion."
       "Gotcha," said Bladed Lad. "Well, it was heading in the direction
of the national park anyway, so if we deflect it around to the north so
that it avoids the center of town, then we can finish this off away from
the general population."
       Ordinary Lady contacted first Writer's Block Woman and then
Frothing-At-The-Mouth Lad and Mouse and told them about the change in
plan. Mouse replied, "Okay, according to the tour operators that we've
been able to contact, all the night sky viewing groups should have
finished around 11 o'clock or so."
       "We've also gotten confirmation that there aren't any camping
grounds on the near side of the park," said Frothing-At-The-Mouth Lad.
"So once you get this bozo around the town you should have a bit of
leeway if he starts to slowly wander. Do you want any help with that?
Mouse and myself can fly out there to help with the flying-in-its-face
if you need us."
       "No, for now you two stay on the ground and keep in contact with
the the local authorities," said Ordinary Lady. "We'll call you if we
need you. Right everybody, let's herd this guy out."


"Get those people out of the way!" Fearless Leader yelled. "At least try
to limit the damage!"
      So far, only Limp-Asparagus Lad was having much effect in reducing
the number of casualties, if only because he could reduce the dramatic
impact of casualties. But that involved a fine balancing act between the
extremes of cinematic destruction which would have caused vast amounts
of over-the-top property damage and more realistic effects that would
harm lots of people, and it couldn't reduce the numbers beyond a certain
point. It certainly couldn't stop the problem.
      Nothing could stop the problem.
      "It's heading onto the Strip!" Fuzzy yelled. "Once it hits those
      "Occultism Kid, can't you do anything?"
      "It's just too big! No area effect spell I've got it powerful
enough at the size needed to have any effect on it! And no direct spell
is working. It's basically just ignoring them."
      The figure stopped moving for a moment, giving them a chance to
catch up, and move civilians out of the way.
      "What's it waiting for?" Squeaky Clean asked, wiping his forehead
after stopping the latest falling wall from creating too large a mess.
      The figure raised it hands...and then smacked them into the ground.
      The heroes, and everyone else in the city, were tossed as the
ground rippled under their feet. Windows shattered from the seismic
shock, alarms sounded, adding to the already intense noise, and more
panic set in.
      "STOP THAT!" CAPTAIN CAPITALIZE roared. The soundwave of that alone
shook the figure, and the follow up punch caused it to rock on its
heels, but after that it merely raised its hands again.
      "Oh no, no, no..." Fuzzy moaned, before hearing something else. 
"What the hell is that!?!?"
      Next to them, the front of a building was rising from the rest of
the building, revealing a large hanger behind it, that contained a very
large construct.
      "Yes!" Fearless Leader yelled, punching his fist into the air.
      "What is that?" Squeaky Clean yelled.
      There was a pause as light exploded in the hanger space, lighting
up the thing inside. It looked like a robot, or a man, or something. One
leg rose and then it took a trembling step forwards. The heroes ducked
as cables fell from it.
      "Hello," a voice blared from a speaker. "Sorry about the late
arrival. Had to cobble this together. This is Kid Pocky, from inside the
Angstvangelion... Oh, all those people...how could this happen? I can
not let it happen again!"
      "Awfully chipper, isn't he?" Fuzzy muttered.
      "It's an Angstvangelion," Limp-Asparagus Lad replied. "Emphasis on
angst. The pilot needs to maintain a level of depression in order to
power it up properly.
      "Get on with it!" Fearless Leader yelled.
      The figure was now looking at the Angstvangelion, its attention for
the first time now directed at something other than its continuing
destruction. It stood, arms dropping to its side, as it turned to face
the newcomer.
      The long limbs of the Angstvangelion swung forwards as Kid Pocky
directed the mecha forwards. In only a few strides it faced the figure. 
Eye to eye. And considering the size of the figure that was no small
      The figure swung an arm up and around, but this was blocked by a
smooth move as the Angstvangelion raised its own arm. In return, the
Angstvangelion reached out and took a hold on the figure's head,
applying crushing force.
      Small fractures appeared on the figure's head, but it didn't break. 
In return, it grabbed the Angstvangelion's arm, and started to bend it.
      "Um, guys," Kid Pocky's voice sounded. "Little help? I don't have
infinite power on this thing, you know."
      "Oh right." Waking up from their distracted airs, the other heroes
leapt back into the fray.


The water steamed around them. II was barely conscious at this point,
but he managed to keep up his power, turning the water into steam so
that he and Captain Napalm could fly through it unrestricted.
      But not unharmed, the water having been superheated above boiling
point in less than a second. But neither of them focussed on that. There
was a job to do, and only they could do it.
      Straight down they plunged, and around them a purple light filled
the water, guiding them on, faster and faster as they flew. Until...
      Captain Napalm exploded his power, even as the water crashed in on
their return path. Their speed was such that they covered the distance
to the sea bed in moments, but that was the easy part.
      The sea bed heaved and cracked under the sudden onslaught. The
ground beneath the figure bowed and buckled as it continued obliviously
to heat the water around it, but now more heat was being pumped beneath
      Which could only go on for so long.
      The sea bed cracked. Lava, barely contained at the best of times,
vented upwards, crashing into the water, immediately creating more
steam. But this was only the secondary effect.
      The figure dropped into the lava, the pressure impacting on it
doubling, tripling, more as it did so. Even it had a breaking point.
      The explosion was a blast of purple, pushing all before it away. 
But the explosion was normal. The frigid waves warmed up, but quickly
cooled down again. Ice started forming immediately as the warmth was
carried away.
      And two superheroes were flung upwards. Although now unconscious.


"UN, Vegas reports the figure is under control. Most likely to be
destroyed in the next few minutes."
      UN nodded. This was the third such report, and he started to
mentally breath a sigh of relief. Whatever this attack was, they were
starting to get it under control.
      "Oh crap," wReamhack said. "Repeat that," he said into his headset. 
"I'm going to put you on speaker."
      "...approaching the Ant.alt.ica site," the voice of Psionic Lad
crackled through, from their flight.thingee. "I felt...enormous psychic
explosion...getting some readings...we've found the team...they're all
unconscious...I think...can't quite tell."
      "From the cold?" UN asked.
      "...no...the psychic blast knocked them out...water's returning to
normal. Looks like they took out that creature. But it caused a huge
psychic backlash when they did..."
      "If it caused this...we can't destroy any more, especially in
populated areas...the number of deaths that would result..."
      "What? Quick, tell the other teams not to destroy the things."
      "Huh? Then what are they supposed to do?"
      "Just...contain them...but they can't be destroyed."
      "Get back to you soon...am collecting the team now." Psionic Lad's
transmission clicked off.
      "Get others on this. We need more people if we have to contain
these things."
      "Uh, dude. Getting something back from space team."
      "What? What are you talking about?"
      "The guys sent to look into Pluto? We got a report back."
      "I don't have time for that now."
      "This sounds important, dude..." California Kid flicked a switch,
and once again the speakers crackled into life.
      "...large purple planet...or pink...green? Really weird..."
      "Who is that?" UN snapped.
      "Parking Karma Kid. He, Kid Not-Appearing-In-Any-Retcon-Hour-Story,
and Bad Timing Boy took the Riki Tiki Tavi to check it out."
      "Bad Timing Boy?"
      California Kid shrugged. "He wandered in asking if there was
something to be done when we picked the team."
      "...Pluto's completely destroyed...but we traced the pink, purple
planet...it's near Neptune...it's...it's destroying Neptune...just
sucking it up...looks like a nose..."
      "It's snorting Neptune," Bad-Timing Boy's voice sounded. "The
planet is snorting up Neptune!"
      "At this rate...it could clear out the solar system in a few days! 
It's only a matter of time before it gets to Looni.earth!"

NEXT ISSUE: Just what the Hell(tm) is going on here? Find out in the
next exposition packed issue!
      But first, find out what the Net.Elementalist and that blue girl
get up to in the official tie-in comic, _The Alt.Riders #42_!

<deep breath>
The Net.Elementalist and the blue girl are Jamas' and used with 
Fourth Wall Lass is Saxon's and used with permission.
Writer's Block Woman and Mouse are Jaelle's and used with permission.
Kid Pocky and his Angstvangelion are Dvandom's and used with permission.
Psionic Lad is Carolyn Vaughan's and cameod without permission.
Bladed Lad created by Campbell "Sasquatch" March and not reserved.
California Kid, Captain Napalm, Doctor Stomper, Fearless Leader,
Mainstream Man, Nomex Man are Public Domain.
Captain Capitalize created by wReam and not reserved.
Frat Boy and Innovative-Offense Boy created by Uplink and not reserved.
Fuzzy created by Connie Hirsch and not reserved.
Invisible Incendiary created by Steve Hutchinson and not reserved.
Liefeld's Porpoise created by Aaron Veenstra and not reserved.
List Lad created by Scavenger and not reserved.
Occultism Kid created by Josh Geurink and not reserved.
Ordinary Lady created by Martin Phipps and not reserved.
Squeaky Clean created by Maurice Beyke and not reserved.
Ultimate Ninja is the Writer Character of wReam and useable without

NOTES: Jamas had an idea to destroy Pluto long before it happened in
comics, so he decided to also take out Neptune as well just because he
could...and lo!, a mini-series was born...
      Saxon got dragged in because Jamas couldn't work out the plot by

Jamas Enright
"Answers answered and questions questioned."
Homepage: http://www.eyrie.org/~thad/
Blue Light Productions homepage: http://www.eyrie.org/~thad/blip/

"If a great state has decided by law that twice two is five, it would be
foolish to allow mathematicians to testify." - Comment during the Scopes
Monkey Trial.

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