LNH20/HCC: Wrapped #0 'Secret Origin!'

Saxon Brenton saxonbrenton at hotmail.com
Sun May 12 01:25:10 PDT 2013

[LNH20/HCC] Wrapped #0
Wrapped #0
A Legion of Net.Heroes-20 story 
'Secret Origin!' 
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 
Gift-Wrapping Granny. 
[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.] 
Authors notes: 
     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 		 	   		  

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