LNH20/HCC: Wrapped #0 'Secret Origin!'
saxonbrenton at hotmail.com
Sun May 12 01:25:10 PDT 2013
[LNH20/HCC] Wrapped #0
A Legion of Net.Heroes-20 story
written by and copyright 2013 Saxon Brenton
for the 36.5th High Concept Challenge
Cover shows a grey-haired Black Canadian grandmother dressed in a dark
blue and purple costume launching an energetic flying kick (laced with
speed lines and Kirbian perspective) directly at the face of the
reader. Cover blurb reads: 'The Secret Origin of Gift-Wrapping Granny!'
[The story is a single page feature, composed of nine panels in a
3 x 3 grid, each with a narrative caption underneath it.]
Doreen Haverton was born in Toronto, Canada. She married Harry
Thrackmorton when she was twenty, and worked all her life as a middle
school teacher. Harry worked as a manager in electricity supply.
They had four children, and eleven grandchildren.
[Picture 1 shows a Black Canadian couple posing for their wedding
Doreen's superpowers involved being able to conjure up decorative paper
and bows out of nothing, and using it to instantly wrap up people and
objects. She never considered using it for superhuman activities during
her working life, but found it did occasionally come in handy for
keeping unruly students under control. And of course, for the latter
half of her life those abilities were suppressed during the period of
the Killfile, just like everyone else's superpowers.]
[Picture 2 shows Mrs Thrackmorton pointing at one such unruly student,
who suddenly finds himself in a bodybind of wrapping paper. He has a
freaked out look on his face as he topples towards the floor.]
The Thrackmortons lived a full and happy life, and retired five years
ago. Cancer cruelly took Harry barely two years later.
[Picture 3 shows the bereaved Doreen dressed in funeral black and
sitting in an armchair while one of her sons lays a comforting hand on
her shoulder. Other family members and mourners can be seen in the
In order to keep busy, and as a form of exercise, Doreen took up martial
[Picture 4 shows Doreen in a martial arts class, dressed in a gi.]
She enjoyed it a lot. And it turned out she was good at it.
[Picture 5 shows Doreen in class, using a kick to shatter a plank of
wood being held up by another student.]
*Very* good at it.
[Picture 6 shows Doreen in class, using a bare knuckle punch to break
in half a solid concrete block 6 inches thick.]
Doreen enjoyed using her skills, and combined them with her recently
reactivated superpowers to begin fighting crime under the identity of
[Picture 7 shows Gift-Wrapping Granny leaping down from above at a trio
of criminals who are wearing balaclavas and wielding handguns. One
criminal is about to have her foot pasted in his face, another is
already being entangled by the ribbons she has conjured up from her
left hand, and the third will no doubt be hit with the nunchucks she
is twirling in her right hand.]
Like many superheroes, Gift-Wrapping Granny was attracted to the city
of Net.ropolis to join the Legion of Net.Heroes.
[Picture 8 shows Gift-Wrapping Granny standing before the Legion of
Net.Heroes HQ, looking up at the imposing building.]
And now, at a sprightly 70 years of age, Gift-Wrapping Granny is a
valued member of the Legion's Espionage Squad.
[Picture 9 shows Gift-Wrapping Granny standing arms akimbo, and
flanked by her fellow squad members: Agent Mephitidae, Configuration
Man, Killswitch, and Lass Dragon.]
Written for the 36.5th High Concept Challenge, 'One Minute
Origin': a brief and distilled origin story for a hero.
The above story is the in-universe secret origin for GWG. In
some ways the out-of-universe origin is just as strange.
When Andrew Perron was organising the LNH20 imprint back in late
2011/early 2012, it was suggested that the organisation needed an
espionage squad, which of course implied a martial artist for
ninja-like stealth. Martin Phipps pointed out that another Asian
martial artist would be a bit generic - and in his experience as a
lecturer working in Asia a lot of the younger people weren't that
interested in martial arts anyway. That set me wondering whether a
variation on the theme should use an elderly martial artist, or one
of non-Asian background. And then I recalled a news article from the
Sydney Morning Herald in late 2011 about a grandmother living in
western Sydney who had taken up martial arts late in life for self
defense and enjoyed it so much she ended up going for her black belt,
which neatly encapsulated both options.
So I grafted the notion onto an already existing elderly character
with superpowers that I had created. The original version of Gift-
Wrapping Granny (the Looniearth-A version) appeared briefly in _Legion
of Net.Heroes_ vol.2 #s 27 and 28, as a retired school teacher who had
only ever used her powers to to keep her students under control. Her
Looniearth-20 counterpart is much the same person, but with added late
life interest in martial arts.
Saxon Brenton University of Technology, city library, Sydney Australia
saxon.brenton at uts.edu.au saxonbrenton at hotmail.com
"These 'no-nonsense' solutions of yours just don't hold water in a complex
world of jet-powered apes and time-travel." - Superman, JLA Classified #3
More information about the racc