REPOST: RAC Challenge! #16

Arthur Spitzer arspitzer at
Tue Nov 17 20:42:41 PST 2015

Chapter by Wayne "Poet" Parillo, who wrote the LNH series Elf and
did some writings for the Omega imprint..

From: franke at (Jerry L Franke)
Newsgroups: rec.arts.comics.creative
Subject: REPOST: RAC Challenge! Ch. 16
Date: 16 Nov 1995 17:05:49 GMT

Continuing the Challenge!


                                RAC CHALLENGE!
Chapter 16: If I wasn't such an evil, evil man, I'd give a short a pithy title
that could easily be fit into the dialogue. But I am evil, and therefore any
title I'd select must be fit to that evil. And also, it must mention cheese.
Twice. Definitely has to mention cheese twice.

   by Wayne "Poet" Parillo
   title by Matt "My state should be sold to the British" Rossi III
   "You act like this sort of thing happens all of the time!"
   "Well, it's does."
   --Opal and Bobby in a way past issue of the X-Men
   "Doh!" Homer J Simpson
   The black leather jacket and heavily spiked Matthew Rossi III stood
   in front of his computer, a triumphant smile on his face. As he
   stepped closer to his console there was a slight crunching sound from
   the shattered fourth wall that lay at his feet. <THAT'LL TEACH THEM
   On his computer screen was the recently updated Writer Roster. Rossi
   looked to the name beneath his own and grimaced. <OH NO,> he thought,
   *Oh yes, Matt.*
   A steel pen arched through the air. Before Matt could react it struck
   his hard drive. There was a brilliant pyrotechnic display as the
   computer exploded into several billion pieces.
   *The pen is mightier than the disk.*
   Matt whirled and glared at the figure. [POET,] he muttered.
   Standing before Matt was the new writer of the RAC Challenge!. Wayne
   E Parillo AKA Poet was smiling. He was not dressed nearly as
   spectacular (or sinisterly) as the former writer: A white shirt with
   a red power tie, jean shorts, and tiva' sandals.
   *Matt, you've got to learn to relax. Although, since this is
   Providence as opposed to Old Providence I can see why you're
   Poet blinked.
   Matt grimaced.
   *Matt, I blinked. I may be a temporary God, but I still get dust in
   my eye.* Poet frowned. *This is worse than I previously thought.*
   Poet put his hand on Matt's shoulder in a sympathetic way.
   [YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT IT'S LIKE!] Matt's head dropped. [WRITING OMEGA
   'MEGA #4?]
   *Matt, it's time to go on a trip.*
   Poet smiled and in a flash of light they disappeared.
   OK, I'll start using the other three walls
   Mary Lou peered out from beneath the dumpster. She could see
   Armington's body strewn about. <This is bad,> she decided. <Maybe I
   should come out?> She waited. She seemed to remember a spiked man
   causing a tremendous amount of chaos. However, a block seemed to have
   been placed in her mind.
   Footsteps echoed closer to Mary Lou and her hiding place. She
   couldn't see anyone and her heart began to race. Unfortunately, her
   once ultimate mind was slowing down. "I can't remember!" she
   whispered through quivering lips.
   The footsteps sounded further away. Finally, they vanished
   Mary Lou peered out from beneath the dumpster. She could see
   Armington's body strewn about. <Why am I here?> she wondered. Mary
   Lou crawled out from beneath a dumpster.
   4th wall
   "Oh-kay, that's tu 'waffle waffles. A chawklet, an a 'nella." The
   Newport Dairy Cremeary waitress smiled as she put the two drinks
   down. If she knew who she was serving perhaps she would not have
   [Cranston?!] Matt asked in disbelief. [All the places to transport us
   and you pick Cranston?!]
   *I haven't been here since Christmas and I missed the accents. Plus
   the fraps are pretty good.*
   Matt was still in his spiked leather jacket (sans the featureless
   mask) and Poet was still in his normal attire.
   Matt frowned. [They're not fraps. They're Awful-Awful.]
   *Yes,* Poet began, *they're the Ulti--*
   [Don't even say it,] Matt growled. [My voice. What happened to my
   *I'm in charge now. I just took you along to make sure you don't
   figure out a way to cause more damage. You have too much creative
   energy on most days. It can be dangerous.*
   [Wait until the story comes back my way. You think what happened to
   Chad was bad. . .]
   Poet took out a small black object.
   [What's that?] Matt asked, almost afraid to put his question into
   *The Ultimate Remote.* (Couldn't resist) Poet pushed a button marked
   "play." After running through the entire collection of well-written
   and brilliant Voyeur archive at eyrie the story continued.
   3rd wall
   Dirk was cold. Very very cold. Unfortunately he was getting colder by
   the minute. He tried to force his eyes open. <I'm a hero *dammit.* I
   have Ultimate Powers!> He slowly began to move his arms in small
   circles. It was then that he noticed the Ul timate Twins.
   "Wandering walruses! I wonder if this is a dream?" Dirk took the
   opportunity to look down. He noticed a smaller than usual budge in
   his spandex. Alarm quickly spread across his face. "Miniscule
   manhood! It isn't a dream! That would never happen in a dream!"
   Just then a Dirk remembered something. "Form of a beaver," he said.
   His costume transformed into a giant beaver and for a moment the cold
   did not bother Dirk in the least bit. Unfortunately, he had
   absolutely *no* experience at handling a giant beaver . The water
   engulfed him and Dirk began to sink.
   Rex Reeves, The Pen-Ultimate man flew in low over the Arctic water.
   "I don't know how Spurgo knew where they were. But there are Tito and
   Tina." Rex used the Ultimate Distance Vision. <Is that a giant
   Rex flew in for a closer look.
   <It's not every day that a man can say he was drown in a giant
   beaver.> Dirk resisted (as did the author) to make several perverted
   and tasteless jokes. <Ok, enough is enough.>
   "Duck-man!" Unfortunately, Dirk turned into Duck Man. Since Duck Man
   is a cartoon character Dirk found himself relatively at peace in the
   water. Plus, he could now talk without a problem.
   "Holy large lawsuit! Paragon! Make me Paragon."
   And fifteen feet underwater Paragon The Ultimate Man reappeared.
   Rex Reeves watched the giant beaver turn into a cartoon character and
   then into Paragon. "Boss," he said into his wrist communicator,
   "you're not going to believe this."
   As we all know BONK is the sound that is made when flying people run
   into invisible objects. SPLASH!
   As we all know SPLASH is the sound that is made when the flying
   person falls unconscious into the water.
   Paragon reached the surface of the water. The continued morphing had
   given him a rush of adrenaline. He popped up between the unconscious
   twins. <How *do* they float?> he wondered.
   There was a loud splash. "Rex Reeves, The Pen-Ultimate Man?" he said
   Just then a massive shadow fell on Paragon from the ship that had
   uncloaked directly above him.
   "Why is there a spaceship above me?" Paragon muttered. He blacked
   "This could be the Ultimate Failure," Ernie said. Ernie, the last
   member of the Collective struggled with the micro-circuitry of the
   chamber in front of him. Originally, the plan that all of the energy
   of the Collective would be placed into a new Ultim ate Marble and a
   new Ultimate Man would be selected. A person who exemplified the
   ideals of the Collective, a person who would honor them by holding to
   their virtues.
   Fortunately, Ernie's cool head prevailed. Why restructure everything
   when they had the answer right in front of them? Although, it was now
   only Ernie.
   The last touched a micro-circuitry were completed. The music rose
   dramatically as Ernie pressed a button.
   4th wall
   Matt was busy finishing off his sixth Awful-Awful. After then second
   drink his head had become entirely numb. The four after had been so
   simple. He glanced over at Poet.
   Poet was staring off into space.
   *Four hours again. That's why I haven't finished 'Mega.* Poet smiled
   as he spoke.
   [Sure,] Matt replied between sips of his drink.
   Poet opened his mouth to say something. He decided better of it and
   did not say a word.
   [So, what are you doing next?]
   *I regret to inform you of something, Matt.*
   Poet smiled. *You're powerless.*
   Matt blinked.
   Nothing happened to the universe. [Oh no,] he said.
   Poet stared at Matt for a second. *Newt.*
   Matt Rossi III was turned into a newt.
   Just then the waitress walked over. "You don't have to pay," she
   *I love this* Poet said aloud with a smile.
   He pressed a button on the Ultimate Remote and disappeared. Matt
   Rossi III now in newt disguise form was left on the chair in the
   Newport Creamery.
   3rd wall
   Paragon did not stir.
   "Dirk!" some repeated.
   Paragon slowly opened his eyes. He felt as if someone was pounding
   several large drums inside his cerebrum.
   "Better," the voice said.
   Paragon slowly looked around the room. He was in the middle of a
   totally bare room. In the background he heard a HIZZ sound. Suddenly,
   standing before Paragon was a man.
   The man wore red pajamas. Actually, the pajamas included a hood which
   effectively covered the man's face. There was a large gattling type
   cannon attached to his forearm (a la Azrael) and two katanas were
   strapped to his back.
   Paragon got to his knees.
   "Better to die on your back then on your knees," the man said. His
   voice was laced with obnoxiousness.
   "Who the hell are you?"
   "What? My reputation does not proceed me in this backwater dimension?
   The name's Assassin --Obnoxious Assassin." OA bowed dramatically.
   Paragon stood up. He gradually stretched his arms upward. "I suppose
   this is where we have the obligatory fight and I end up wiping the
   floor with your face." Paragon cracked his knuckles.
   "Actually," OA said as he took a small device from an inner pocket,
   "I read you as powerless." He held the device up for Paragon to see
   -- it was a bottle of white out.
   Paragon tilted his head slightly. "A bottle of white-out? Are you
   OA closed his hand around the white-out. Then he punched Paragon
   square in the nose. Paragon fell with a loud thud. "I can't believe
   you feel for that."
   <I can't believe I fell for that either,> Paragon thought. He stood
   up again. He gingerly reached his hand to his face. It came away with
   "Don't worry. It's not like you're good looking or anything. A matter
   of fact you're so ugly that Swordmaster could get a date be--"
   "AAArrrrgggghhhhh!!!" Paragon screamed. <I need a battle-cry,> he
   thought. He rushed forward.
   Obnoxious Assassin effortlessly flipped the hero across the room.
   Paragon landed on his back with a loud THUD.
   "Would you like to try that scenario again?" OA asked.
   As Paragon was flight on his back. A bright light filled the room.
   Paragon realized that someone had opened a door. CLICK-CLICK-CLICK.
   <I don't want to know what those clicks were,> Paragon thought. He
   stood up.
   "Sweet sizzling spuds!" he cried. Standing next to Obnoxious Assassin
   was Doctor Malevo. Standing next to Doctor Malevo was a man dressed
   in bright green. Paragon avoided his eyes.
   4th wall
   Poet was staring at Jerry Franke's web-page. *I'd hate to think that
   I don't leave the next writer with some sort of dangler.*
   Poet thought aloud, *I gotta come up with something-- What's this?
   Splurgo, huh.*
   3rd wall
   "I see that you're powerless," Doctor Malevo said. Paragon's enemy
   boldly walked forward. The man was dressed all in silver and a large
   red cape flowed behind him.
   "Glad to see that you've moved up in the world," Paragon said. "Is
   that conquering attire?"
   "Your whit never fails in my presence. OA, insult this heathen."
   Malevo turned his back on the hero, privately hoping that no one
   would notice his lack of verbal abilities.
   "Paragon, face it. You only have three things going against you. One,
   you've lost your cosmic super-powers. Two, you're uglier than
   Malevo's mom. Three, you're degree is in journalism."
   Paragon winced at the third insult. "What happened to my powers?"
   "If I wasn't such an evil, evil man, I'd give a short and pithy title
   that could easily be fit into the dialogue. But I am evil, and
   therefore any title I'd select must be fit to that evil. And also, it
   must mention cheese. Twice. Definitely has to m ention cheese twice."
   Everybody stared at the man in bright green.
   "Excuse me. Who are you?" Paragon asked.
   "I," the man in bright green said as he pointed his thumb at his
   chest, "am Pesto Pontificiation Parmesian."
   "PPP?" OA asked. "Man, this is too easy."
   "Shut up," Malevo said as he wheeled around. "Enough time has been
   give to you two. I am the focal point of this. Not you two." He
   glared at his two henchmen.
   "Malevo, I hate to tell you this. But you're dead."
   "Rating, my dear boy. Ratings." Malevo smiled evilly.
   4th wall
   *That's right. Rossi was stripped of his power, and the result is
   that Paragon lost his.*
   3rd wall
   "Welcome to PPP Productions! In association with Malevo Enterprises.
   I'm your MC, Mr. Pesto Pontificiation Parmesian. We're happy to bring
   you the gallery event of the century!"
   Pesto was standing in the middle of a room. There was a huge picture
   window directly in front of him and he smiled. Five cameras --shaped
   like small baseballs-- flew around filming Pesto from different
   There was a loud HIZZ and a bright flash. Now, beside PPP, were three
   other people. Obnoxious Assassin, the black clad Dr. Malevo, and a
   large green barrel.
   "How about that!" PPP stated, gesturing toward the green barrel.
   Just then Paragon popped his head out. There was a small metallic
   device attached to his neck.
   Dr. Malevo stepped forward and took out a small box. PPP gestured
   "The wonderful ratings box which we've hooked everyone who has
   ordered this special Pay Per View program will allow you the payee to
   bid for the particularly violent action that will occur to Paragon."
   Paragon blinked in disbelief. He struggled helplessly in the barrel.
   Obnoxious Assassin had managed to chain him tightly. Then the
   Assassin had welded the chain to the side of the barrel. His cosmic
   power having mysteriously waned Paragon felt his bo dy beginning to
   stiffen inside the metallic coffin. <This sucks,> he decided.
   "Ok, let's start the bidding at $200,000 dollars!" PPP smiled at the
   After thirty seconds Dr. Malevo grinned wickedly. "A million dollars.
   Bring in the cement mixer!"
   A door opened up and a former Dynamax Agent (they were all now
   employed by PPP & Malevo) backed in a cement truck.
   "You've got to be kidding," Paragon muttered. He struggled to no
   avail inside the barrel.
   Obnoxious Assassin and the former Agent poured cement into the
   barrel. They filled it up to Paragon's neck. Paragon gasped.
   "Come off it!" Paragon said. The concrete began to harden around him.
   The cameras zoomed in on Paragon.
   "Great!" PPP said. "We're bringing in funds as we speak. Be the
   person who the capping of the barrel is dedicated to! Remember, we
   check you Swiss funds before we announce your name." He waved his
   finger in a "tsk-tsk-tsk" manner at the camera.
   Dr. Malevo sidled next to Obnoxious Assassin. "How much are we
   bringing in?" Malevo asked.
   "Well, these stupid idiots paid a couple-hundred of thousand each for
   the illegal feed. Plus this bidding war. What is it with this
   universe? You don't have much entertainment in this place. No
   Platypus Man. No Wings. Heck, the Simpsons' are real . That alone is
   warped enough to teleport home."
   "You must give me that technology," Dr. Malevo said. He was watching
   the bidding war escalate.
   "Yeah, right," OA muttered. He walked away to go check on some
   "Well," PPP said. "The sponsor of the covering is the villain Franke.
   All hail Franke!"
   Minutes later Paragon was in the darkness.
   What he did not know that the barrel was now lined with explosives.
   There were also two homing devices on the barrel. And everything was
   linked through the device on Paragon's neck. The really annoying part
   was he was chained up, welded to the side of a barrel, and surrounded
   in concrete.
   "This sucks," Paragon whispered. Annoying the fact that his oxygen
   was running out. "I wonder where the Ultimate Twins are? I could
   really use a dramatic save right now."
   Tito and Tina were encased in ice. Definitely not in a position to
   save anyone. Rex Reeves, The Penultimate Man struggled with the class
   10 headache. "What happened?" he wondered aloud. "Why am I
   Rex Reeves was bobbing in the ocean. The lower half of his body
   encased in ice. "Why can't I remember anything?" He looked around.
   "Where am I?" he paused. He blinked. "Whoa, for a minute there I
   thought I was going to have amnesia. What a revolting development
   that would have been."
   The Penultimate Man rose from the ocean and flexed the muscles in his
   legs. The ice shattered. He looked down. "Well, at least I'll give
   the Spurgenator something."
   Moments later he flew off with the two frozen Ultimate Kids'.
   "Ok," PPP began, "the bids are in!" He stood at the now open window.
   The barrel with Paragon inside rested precariously on the edge. PPP
   was resting his foot on hit. "We've trapped the Ultimate Idiot in
   this lovely metal coffin. We've checked out all of the funds and
   everything's okey-dokey. If you look at your special vital reader,"
   he took a small device from his pocket and looked at it. "Then you'll
   notice that Paragon will be conscious for his death. The small
   microphone that we installed on his neck will pick up his screams of
   <Microphone?> Paragon thought. Unfortunately, Obnoxious Assassin had
   given him an earphone before the lid had been welded shut.
   "Hello?" Paragon asked. His own voice boomed in his ear.
   "Well, the Ultimate Imbecile speaks." It was Obnoxious Assassin.
   "Nice to know that you're going to be aware of your impending doom."
   "Hobbling hedgehogs," Paragon muttered. "I'm going to be nationally
   suffocated at the bottom of an ocean!"
   "Nope," OA replied. "We're going to blow you up before you hit
   bottom. Have a nice day."
   <This is ridiculous,> Paragon thought.
   "Buh-bye!" PPP said. He pushed the barrel off the edge.
   <I'm going to die,> Paragon thought. He felt his head becoming light.
   PPP watched the life-signs on the monitor. "Ok, kiddies. The pushing
   of the missiles is dedicated to someone named 'Newt.'" He stared out
   the window. "Nah, you don't think. . ."
   Obnoxious Assassin walked up to Doctor Malevo. "I can't believe you
   let this arrogant jack-ass take over the storyline. I thought you
   were the Ultimate Bad-Guy?"
   Dr. Malevo laughed before he spoke. "You don't think this guy will
   make it past the next few issues? He managed to secure enough funds
   so I can continue my evil dominance of the world."
   "I must have under estimated you. I figured you were a depthless two
   dimensional character. If it's possible to have one dimension then
   you're a living example. I'm out here." HIZZ. OA disappeared.
   ThUD. WHiSH. zAP. zOOM. The two missiles connected with the barrel.
   There was a tremendous explosion. Dead fish rose to the surface. PPP
   was busy dancing. "Yes! Yes! Yes!" he celebrated.
   Dr. Malevo walked up next to him and smiled. "It is over. Paragon,
   The Ultimate Man is dead." He pointed to the vital signs that were
   now a flatline.
   A lil ole prologue:
   Poet appeared inside the Newport Creamery. He blinked in surprise.
   *Excuse me,* Poet said to a waitress. *I know my power is waning, but
   I planned on turning the Newt back into Matt*
   "Oh. Some orange cat put him in a box and married him to London."
   Poet blinked again. *I'm outta here.*
   Next issue: "MEMOREX TrackBall Program Disk. If Used Incorrectly Then
       The World Will Be Conquered." by Fox Cutter
       Author's Notes: I guess. I guess I went a little strange. It has
       been a rather strange week and I'm happy that I was bounced up in
       the order. That way I got a chance to get rid of Paragon.
       Originally, well, originally Drizzt was going to follow me. I
       asked him if there was anything special I could do. He said kill
       Paragon. So I did. Paragon's dead, the next writer is up and I
       hope I did this entire thing justice.
       Matt, I'm sorry I turned you into a Newt. At least you're seeing
       the world. :)
       Best of luck to the next author. I'll be back in late August. Net
       access? Who knows. The title comes from that something's just
       lying on my desk.
       Wayne "Poet" Parillo



Jerry L. Franke                        franke at
Computer Science Dept.                 Indiana University
formerly from Florida State University

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