RACCCafe: RACCQuest, part 1

I'm not cool enough to have a nickname lord_soldeed at yahoo.com
Wed Mar 15 20:58:16 PST 2006

RACCCAFE:  RACCquest, part 1
by Adrian James McClure

Note:  This is a sequel to Arthur Spitzer's "Death of RACCCAFE" story
of two years ago, which can be found here:


	Ultimate Mercenary was sitting at a table in the restaurant which was
formerly known as the improbably-spelled RACCCafe but had now been
transformed into Chooters by the intervention of the Chuggernaut, who
embodied the elemental power of beer commericals.  It was a wonderful
place where the beer was plentiful and the women were half-naked and
gorgeous and very, very willing.

	 Still, he was looking somewhat restless, which wasn't surprising
given that he'd been sitting at that table for most of two years while
waiting for his current author to get off his behind and write another
issue of his series.  He only left his continuous sulking fit to order
food, go to the bathroom, and occasionally behead someone when waiting
around became too much to bear.  Even the half-naked women who were
stationed throughout Chooters didn't make things any better.  Well, he
took that back.  Half-naked women made everything better, unless they
were drawn by Rob Liefield.

	"Gah!" he shouted.  "Liefield jokes!  That's how desparate I'm
getting.  Why won't my author come back and write another issue of my
series?  I'm getting tired of this!"  He pulled out his ginsu katana
and beheaded a passing Squidman.

	The other people sitting at his table continued to ignore him.
Ultimate Mercenary was sitting at the Adrian McClure Characters' Table.
 At the moment, it was very small, and consisted of his intelligent and
independent-minded quasi-love interest Varda, his would-be enigmatic
cosmic mentor Masterplan Lad, some poorly defined mystery villains, a
bunch of killer tomatos, and Tom Russell's deceased parallel universe
counterpart.  He'd rather be sitting with the cool net.heroes, the ones
whose authors could be bothered to write at least one issue of their
series per year, but after that incident with Peelix the Cat he'd
decided it was better than sitting at the Characters Tom Russell Would
Rather Forget He Created table.  He sat down and sullenly let himself
be massaged by two gorgeous women.

	"God, this place is horrible," said Varda.  "It's so ugly and
superficial.  I want the old RACCCafe back."

	"I don't see what's wrong with it," said Ultimate Mercenary.  "I mean,
it has beer, and hot women in wet T-shirts!  If it had more cutting up
your enemies until the streets run like rivers with blood and hearing
the lamentations of their women it would have everything anybody ever

	"Ugh.  It's making you ugly and superficial too.  You're not this bad
in our real series."

	"Come on, Varda, that's just exaggeration of character traits for
comedic effect.  You're not this whiny in our real series either."

	"I am too this whiny in our real series!  I mean..."

	"Don't you see?" shouted Masterplan Lad suddenly, pulling himself out
of the slump he'd fallen into.  Everyone jumped in their
seats--Masterplan Lad was very formidable.  He was also very, very
drunk.  "This place has been corrupted by an ancient and terrible force
of evil!  It will spread throughout the entire usenet heirarchy and
destroy all our souls!"

	Everyone rolled their eyes, even the killer tomatos, who didn't
technically have them.  Masterplan Lad was desparate for some kind of
unstoppable force of evil to fight.  He was constantly pontificating
about how some impending apocalypse would destroy everything.  Last
montht it had been global warming.  Before that it had been the "grey
goo" problem, due to malfunctons in beer enhanced with nanotechnology.
  Before that it had been rabid chipmunks from R'yleh.  No one gave him
much thought because, of course, RACCCafe had no continuity and if it
was destroyed it would immediately come back.

	But something stuck in Ultimate Mercenary's craw about what Masterplan
Lad had said.  Maybe it was the fact that Varda's complaints had given
him guitly conscience.  Or maybe it was that the stench of Dead
Alternate Universe Tom Russell's decaying animated corpse sitting next
to him was making him even more irritable than usual.  "There's nothing
wrong with this place!  I mean, yeah, so it has a lot of half-naked
women in it now.  So what?  That's just harmless wish fulfillment!
Didn't Martin say just a few days ago that 'If a comic book, book,
movie or novel is not somebody's fantasy then who wrote it and to whom
does it appeal to?'"

	"You're missing the point!" said Masterplan Lad.  "Mere escapism alone
is not sufficient to make a good story. THis escapism must resonate
with the transcendant struggles and conflicts that define human nature.
 This is if anything even more important in a comedic setting such as
this one.  True comedy comes from character, and this cheap scenario
which satisfies only the grossest physical pleasures leaves no room for
character.  Wish fulfillment is good, but shouldn't it satisfy deeper
wishes than this?"  He gestured around him wildly, almost knocking over
another half-naked supermodel who was coming over to massage Ultimate
Mercenary.  "Is this gaudy pantomime really the highest your soul can
aspire to?"

	Ultimate Mercenary blinked, snapping himself to attention.  "I guess
so," he said.

	Masterplan Lad wouldn't have any of it.  He jolted out of his seat and
grabbed one of the women by the shoulders.  Ultimate Mercenary and the
other two women edged uneasily away from him.  "You there!  What's your

	She looked confused for a moment. "Um, Debbie, I guess."  She giggled

	"Where do you come from?  What is your favorite movie?  What is your
relationship with your parents like?  What are your hopes, your dreams,
your aspirations?  What defines you as a person?"

	"Um, er..."  She looked profoundly confused.  "Say, you have a very
sexy accent.  .."

	"Really?" said Masterplan Lad.  "I mean--Don't you see?  The
Chuggernaut is reducing people to mere objects!  He must be stopped!"

	Ultimate Mercenary sighed.  "You know, maybe you're right."  The other
two women, seeing that he wasn't enjoying their attentions anymore,
walked away from him dejectedly, then started massaging one of the
genetically-engineered killer tomatos.

	"I also think you're right," said Varda, "but there's no continuity
here so we could just solve this problem by ignoring the 'Death of
Racccafe' story."

	"Nonsense!" said Masterplan Lad.  "We must reveal the full
meaninglessness of the empty conformistic hedonism that the Chuggernaut
offers us by engaging in a quest that will test the full valor of our

	Dead Alternate Universe Tom Russell said something that was
undoubtedly very witty and profound, but no one could understand him
because his lungs had decayed.

	"What kind of quest?" said Ultimate Mercenary.

	"According to an ancient prophecy that has been passed down through my
order, the Knights Temporal, throughout the ages, the only being who
can defeat the Chuggernaut is Sig.Lad, the successor of King Arthur.
But the Chugggernaut has frozen Sig.Lad in an impenetrable block of
ice.  The only way to melt this ice is with the Holy Blowtorch held in
the Tower of Mysterious Forbiddingness which lies in the darkest depths
of the conceptual non-space surrounding us, next to the local comics

	"You just made that prophecy up, didn't you?" said Varda.

	"Well, yes," said Masterplan Lad.  "But what's important is the
profound inner reality it symbolizes!"

	"Does this quest involve killing people?" said Ultimate Mercenary.

	"I suppose so," said Masterplan Lad.

	"Then I'm in!"

	"Does it involve sex?" said Debbie, running her fingers down
Masterplan Lad's chest.

	"No!  Well, maybe..."

	"Then I'm in too!"

	"So am I, I guess," said Varda.  "I mean, it beats sitting around
waiting for the next issue of our series."

	Dead Alternate Universe Tom Russell unintelligably burbled an assent.

	"Then it's settled!" said Masterplan Lad.  "We'll need at least one
other party member, of course.  You usually go in with seven, or nine
if we're emphasizing the fantasy quest aspect of this story over the
superhero aspect.  Five is all right, but you never go in with six.
Eight only works if one of us is a Saxon Brenton character who can make
Discworld references..."

Find out in the next installment.  If there ever is one.  Which, given
the fact that no one bothered to follow up the previous RACCCafe story
in almost two years, there probably won't be...

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