LNHY: Death of Trophy Wife # 1
mrfantastic7 at gmail.com
Sun Nov 16 09:27:50 PST 2014
NOTE: This takes place after the LNHY issue I'm posting this week, since
apparently I can't write ANYTHING in order. This story is a little ACRA.
The first thing you have to understand is that in the world called T-Bone,
there is no single unified death figure. Rather, each person has their own
Death who is created for them at the moment of their birth, who follows
them throughout their life. Each Death either loves or hates the person
they are assigned to, or perhaps both. Sometimes they serve as a guardian
angel (since most real guardian angels spend their time getting drunk on
ambrosia and arresting innocent spirits), and sometimes as a source of
Trophy Wife was tucking the newest LNHer, Princess Robot, into bed. (See
Looniverse Y #14, coming soon!) She'd been reading her some of the comics
she'd borrowed from Exclamation!Master!--an old issue of Tales of Suspense
with Hawkeye and the Black Widow. They were sexist as hell, but she could
already see the potential for the character Natasha Romanova would become,
fiercely intelligent and able to take on far more powerful enemies.
She saw Exclamation!Master! sitting alone in the lobby, putting up
decorations for thanksgiving. He always went a little overboard--she didn't
know if they needed quite THAT many giant inflatable turkeys--but it was
weirdly charming. "Here you go, Bob," she said, handing back the comics.
"They're safe!" he said. "I was worried that Princess Robot would destroy
them! She doesn't know her own strength! But I was ready to make the
sacrifice--the terrible sacrifice--to ensure that every child has the right
"You're sweet." She grabbed onto him and hugged him with all her might.
"Oh! Thank you!" said Exclamation!Master! He blushed. He was so cute when
he did that. The time to act was now, she realized.
"Say," she said, "what are you doing tonight."
"Why, defeating the evil of this fair city, of course!"
"But you can't do that all the time. Every superhero's got to have some
kind of civilian life, right?"
"Pister Y. Maprika III is away all week doing business in Sig.ago. I've got
too tickets for Michael Bay's Candyland." She pulled them out of the secret
hyperspace pocket of her sheer dress. "Do you want to go?"
"...certainly! But..." He tapped his fingers together. "Do you have any...
ulterior motives?! Are you propositioning me?!"
"Hell yeah I am."
"I... I'm immensely flattered, ma'am, but aren't you a married woman."
Trophy Wife shrugged seductively. (She'd had a lot of practice.) "I usually
am, but they never mind too much."
"I... I am sorry, but I cannot. It would be improper. And besides... as
long as there is evil in this fair city, I, Exclamation!Master!, can never
dedicate myself to love!"
"I get it." She looked down at the floor.
"But I'm certainly willing to see the movie with you!"
"Good." She smiled, even though she didn't mean it--she had a lot of
practice for that too--and handed him the other ticket. "See you tomorrow."
"I certainly will!" said Exclamation!Master! and walked off to bed. Trophy
Wife took a sad but appreciative look at his behind. She loved him. And she
didn't just feel affection for him--she wanted him. She wanted to rip his
clothes off and ride him like a mechanical bull. She felt a deep affinity
with him--physical and spiritual.
That was a bit of a problem.
Most people assumed she married rich, old men who were about to die for
their money. It was a little more complicated than that. There'd been a
news story going around a few years ago about a cat in a hospital who was
drawn to dying patients. It fixated on the people who were near death,
without fail, and lay on their bed until the end came. Trophy Wife,
effectively, was that cat. She felt her deepest connections, both spiritual
and physical, to people who were near death. And... well, given that, no
one would fault her for taking advantage of it.
No one else really knew this, though, and no one knew the reasons for it.
There'd been a time when men had thought of her as plain and ugly, where no
one had wanted her outside that one really embarrassing Star Trek fanfic
she'd written where she had a threesome with Kirk and Spock. It didn't help
that she grew up in an ultra-religious family that threw fits whenever she
got within a few feet of a boy. Eventually, she ran away, hoping that even
if she starved to death it would be on her own terms.
Eventually she fell in with the cult of an Elder God, now dead, that
dwelled beneath the catacombs of Net.Orleans. She wasn't really on board
with the whole destroying the world thing, but they gave her food and
supported her the way her family never had. The first time she had sex was
an awkward fumble with one of the cult boys--the one, as it turned out, who
had been due to sacrifice her next month.
She wasn't going to die though. It was nothing that easy. Instead, they
would sacrifice her own Death. She would become the Elder God's bride, a
living statue which was the conduit of its power, frozen forever in gold as
humanity died around her. Thankfully, that plan didn't quite work out. A
sorcerer from another dimension--Professor Umbrella or something like
that--had been wandering through and interrupted the ritual in the middle.
She escaped just after the transformation had begun--still her own person,
but now immortal and covered in gold, both apart from death and deeply
linked to it.
The first millionaire who'd gotten ahold of her was a legendary treasure
hunter called North Dakota Smith who was investigating the ruins. It had
been a short but exciting marriage, and he'd initiated her into her
lifestyle of high society with a little bit of adventuring on the side.
Later on, she'd gotten bored with celebrity culture and joined the LNH, and
the rest was history.
Of course the LNH had been a bit of a disappointment. She knew she wasn't a
hero, so maybe if she found other people who were, it would give her a
better idea of what to do with her life. In fact, they were all pretty
disappointing--except for Exclamation!Master! She'd thought it would just
be a fling, and enjoyed the challenged of trying to seduce him, but
realized, too late, that it was far more than that. Her attraction to him
had been growing steadily stronger and stronger over the last week. Which
meant that the time was soon.
That night, she sat alone at the usually-empty reception desk (most of the
receptionists they'd tried hiring had quit within a week). She wasn't the
least bit tired. Since she was free from death, she was free from sleep as
A man walked into the lobby at the stroke of midnight. He was pale and
sallow, middle-aged, wearing a drab grey suit--the most boring man she'd
ever seen. He probably spent a lot of time complaining about selfies and
music teenage girls listen to and "millennials." She knew immediately that
he was a Death--Exclamation!Master!'s Death. A Death wasn't easy to stop,
not without the occult resources that her old cult had had. But while he
might be a Death, he was still a man. And she knew men. She knew men the
way Clausewitz knew armies. He would think she was just a bimbo, just like
all the others (except Exclamation!Master!), and he wouldn't expect her to
try anything clever.
"Hello," she said in her best fake-cheerful receptionist voice, "what can I
do for you, sir?"
"I'm here to kill Exclamation!Master!" said the Death of
"I'm afraid you'll have to wait, he's occupied at the moment."
"That's not possible. This appointment has been scheduled a long time ago."
He handed her his business card--completely plain, with no skulls or
anything. It listed him as "Mr. The Death of Exclamation!Master!"
"I'm sorry, Mr. The Death of Exclamation!Master!, but if you want to kill
Exclamation!Master! you'll have to fill out an LNH Member Death form." Her
husband had trapped the LNH within a net of beauraucracy, though she'd done
her best to wheedle him out of it. She had a lot of practice wheedling.
Now, though, she could turn it to her advantage and keep the Death of
Exclamation!Master! off balance. The form she handed him was in fact the
form for drinking sodas not owned by the No-Duh Corporation ("No-Duh! It's
a soda!") on LNHQ premises, but she'd counted on him to be too angry to
notice that, which he was. He gripped the form in his hands and seemed
about to rip it in half, then thought better of it and calmly deposited it
in the trash can. But his hands were shaking.
"All the necessary paperwork has been filled out," said The Death of
"We'll have to make sure it's in order."
"Do you have a qualified occultist?"
"Not at the moment. You'll have to wait until we do."
The look of absolute, pure hatred that briefly flashed through the Death of
Exclamation!Master!'s eyes was both terrifying and oddly satisfying. "This
paperwork has already been reviewed multiple times. If you want to review
it later, you will have to appeal to the Universal Office."
"All right. I'll just have to ask you a few questions. Mr. The Death of
Trophy Wife stood up and drew herself up to her full, imposing height. "Why
are you going to kill Exclamation!Master in his sleep? Isn't that an
awfully undramatic death for a net.hero?"
"Drama!" spat the Death of Exclamation!Master! "Er, I mean. Drama. The kind
of cheap drama that Exclamation!Master! represents is detrimental to great
art. The banality of his death is precisely what will make it profound."
"He deserves better."
"And you think... that you..." the Death of Exclamation!Master twitched.
"I'm afraid you are not capable of defeating me."
Trophy Wife walked out from behind the desk, cracked her knuckles and
smiled. "Says you." And then she hit him with an uppercut that sent him
crashing into the wall.
"I... I am not authorized for a fight scene," said the Death of
"Well that's too damn bad." She grabbed the desk and threw it at him.
(She'd fill out the desk-smashing form later.)
"You... you..." The Death of Exclamation-Master, his suit torn, pulled
himself up. His eyes crackled with arcane energy and his muscles bulged
angrily. "I will not stand for this! The Death of Exclamation!Master! is
inevitable! It cannot be delayed! I--I--NO! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! It
can't be!" He looked at his own hands, surrounded by energy primed for a
blast, in stark terror. "I'M SUCCUMBING TO DRAMA!!!!!!!!!!!"
"See, that's what happens when you mess with the LNH."
"I... I... I see there have been... unforseen difficulties." The Death of
Exclamation!Master! brushed the dust off his suit. "I may have to postpon
Exclamation!Master!'s death. However, there are certain principles that
must be maintained. The law of equivalent exchange. If Exclamation!Master!
is to survive, someone else must die in his place."
"If the balance between life and death is not kept, the consequences for
this city will be far from pleasant."
She knew just enough about magic to know that he was right. She looked off
into the distance, to where Exclamation!Master! was sleeping, and was
surprised that she didn't hesitate. "All right. I'll do it."
Someone else, she now saw, was present in the room. "Bet you weren't
expecting to see me again," said the Death of Trophy Wife. She looked like
an archetypal hairy-legged Birkenstock-wearing butch lesbian. Actually, she
was fairly attractive now that Trophy Wife thought about it.
The Death of Trophy Wife held out her hand. "Let's get this over with
"All right." Trophy Wife took it.
On Sun, Nov 16, 2014 at 1:28 AM, Tom Russell <joltcity at gmail.com> wrote:
> Trophy Wife died.
"Sorry I stood you up," said Trophy Wife.
"That's okay," said the Death of Trophy Wife, "it won't be so bad. You
won't have to deal with men anymore."
"You're probably right," said Trophy Wife, "but it was fun sometimes." They
walked through the walls of the LNHQ together. "Damn it. I never filled out
my will. I never expected to outlive that guy. That means he'll get all the
artifacts I inherited from my first husband. The Complete Unexpurgated
Net.cronomicon... the iCal... That can't be good."'
"Someone will take care of it," said the Death of Trophy Wife. "They always
"Wonder who'll take my place. I hope they get another woman eventually."
"I hope so too."
"So, where am I going? Heaven or Hell?"
"Well..." said the Death of Trophy Wife, "that might take a while to sort
out. Heaven and Hell are both... kind of in a state right now."
"They're trying to figure out what happened to God."
Well, I figured I might as well dump all the ideas I had for this character
now that she's dead. This was mostly stuff that would have gone in the end
of Looniverse Y #13 if I'd written it. The looming death of
Exclamation!Master! would have originally been a long-term subplot for
someone else to resolve. I took care of that in one go here but left a few
The iCal is presumably a cosmic artifact similar to Moebius and
Trophy Wife: Tom Russell
Exclamation!Master!: Saxon Brenton
Professor Penumbra: Lalo Martins
Pister Y. Maprika III and God: Arthur Spitzer
Everything else: me
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