LNH: Hungry, Hungry Sabertooths #INFINITY: "The Waste of Time"
mrfantastic7 at gmail.com
Tue Nov 24 21:15:07 PST 2020
HUNGRY, HUNGRY SABERTOOTHS!
Issue #INFINITY: "The Wastes of Time"
A tale of deep time wasting, by Jeanne Morningstar
When the lockdown started, Time Waster Lad wasn't too worried. This was
an opportunity for the thing he was the absolute best in the world at
which was, of course, wasting time. He had wasted time for billions of
years to get back from the creation of the universe [Flame Wars
II--Footnote Girl]. Wasting enough time to get to the lockdown was over
would be trivial.
There were so many things that he could do. He could watch all of
Supernatural, which was, allegedly, going to end this year [Amazingly,
it actually did--FG]. He could finish properly learning how to play the
bass. He could try and write the Great American Novel, or maybe make a
GPT-3 script that could do that for him. He could... what was he doing
again? Oh yes. He could list out all the things that he could do during
while he waited for the lockdown to be over. He could organize all his
rubber bands by color. He could... what was he doing again?
He decided to go ahead and start watching Supernatural. About ten
seasons in, he started to feel a little strange. Not from all the
dubious-quality television watching--that, he did all the time; he had
even survived an day-long Baywatch Nights marathon once. No, it was
Usually, once he'd wasted time enough time, something would pull him
back. Like aliens invading, or a cheesecake coming to life and rampaging
across the LNH cafeteria. Usually he didn't have to waste time *all the
His mind felt like a smear on a pair of glasses. He tried to rub his
eyes but suddenly felt he had no eyes to rub and no hands to rub them
with. He was floating outside his own body, drifting through the walls,
floating outside the LNHQ.
There was a huge battle of different net.heroes, net.villains, kiwis,
sheep and other that bursted out of the HQ and violently meandered its
way toward the Net.ropolis Bandshell. "Oooh," said Time Waster Lad.
Giant robots and monsters lumbered across the city and fought in
sped-up, herky-jerky motion.
An enormous wave of violet energy flowed out of the Bandshell. A crowd
of people flooded into the LNHQ. More heroes showed up, more battles
broke out over and over again all over the city. Gradually, things
started to change. Buildings were torn down and replaced by sleek
metallic monstrosities. Neon signs popped up everywhere. Massive
corporate logos dominated the scene. There were cyber-warriors and
gangsters fighting it out int he alleyways. It was always night now,
because of Drama.
The LNHQ itself was still there, though, now a museum which people
walked into and out of every day. And Time Waster Lad still waited.
"Man, I wonder if Supernatural ever ended," he said to himself. "I
forgot to check."
He watched and waited. There was a huge explosion that set fire to the
sky. Net.ropolis was in ruins. Gradually, life took back hold; the
buildings were overgrown by plants. A group of anthropomorphic animals
milled about the city and soon moved in, their small huts turning into a
larger civilization built on top of the old city. They left the LNHQ
alone, though some stopped by to leave offerings.
"Huh. Furries," said Time Waster Lad.
Then new spaceships came down from the sky. The furries were gone; it
wasn't clear where. The humans had come back to the city, rebuilding all
the ruined towers into shiny sleek vaguely future-y edifices. More
spaceships came, bringing aliens from everywhere, converging as one onto
the LNHQ. There were other heroes, some of which Time Waster Lad
recognized as alternate future heroes from adventures past [such as the
Then the sky turned red again, spaceships began to explode and their
flaming pieces fell down and wrecked the new towers. The ruined city was
mostly left empty and alone, but beings came in and entered the LNHQ at
times, some human, some otherwise.
And then the city began to grow back again, a series of even higher
towers with a web of silver threads connecting them and joining them to
something in space above. New heroes flew through the sky, including a
pyramid-like being that Time Waster Lad immediately recognized as Usenet
Prime of the Agents of the Intergalactic Network [see Flame Wars
Final--FG], making his way, of course, for the LNHQ.
Gradually, over the course of what was probably thousands of years, it
began to change. The towers transformed into cathedral-like buildings
covered in gargoyles. Dragons began to fly through the air along with
robed figures bearing staffs and spellbooks. A world of science had
become one of magic, or science-magic or magic-science. There seemed to
be a school of magic where the LNHQ had been. There was a kind of
spiritual humidity, a sense of a powerful energy that was slowly dying.
The light of the world began to darken. The sky slowly turned red. The
towers began to decay. The magic that the battling sorcerers flung at
each other had a baneful air. Gradually, there were less and less
people, and then there were none. The towers gradually crumbled away,
leaving a plain of red sand.
The LNHQ was still there.
Surrounding it were a ring of stone statues, each as large as one of the
old towers, that glowed a sickly green. Their forms seemed to slowly
(even in this sped-up time) shift and twist. These were the Chaos Gods
of the Deep Omnilooniverse, probably, or something like that. Time
Waster Lad wasn't really up on his presbytertheology. [pseudo-Greek for
'study of Elder Gods'--FG]
"Shit," said Time Waster Lad. "Well, I guess I can't stop now. I'll have
to ride this out to the end, whatever that is."
The sun grew larger and larger and the Earth began to crumble. A wall of
red fire advanced on him, growing steadily larger and larger, and then
swallowed up everything. Then it subsided and faded away, leaving a dim
light that faded to nothing. The Earth was gone.
The LNHQ was still there. With the Earth gone, the sub-basements were
now exposed to open air, a huge structure that seemed to shift like a
hypercube. Time Waster Lad wondered if his body was still in there
somewhere, or if even the dust had crumbled away into dust.
He waited a very, very long time. He saw a floating rock flash by with a
Time Crapper talking to an ethereal figure and a group of young
net.heroes [Ultimate Mercenary #7--FG] And then--
His nonexistent nostrils were hit by a distinctive horrible stench. He
was in the Rear-End of Time, a time when space itself seemed to be
rotting away. And there was a fortress in the shape of an outhouse with
the symbol of a moon on it, the Time Crapper's citadel--which had once
been the LNHQ.
He wondered what would happen next. There were a number of theories of
how the universe would end and, because of the nature of Hypertext-Time,
all of them were true. He wondered which one he would end up with. Would
he enter the birth of a new universe, or would he suffer through the
final heat death, wasting time as the universe got darker and colder
He had his answer. The remains of space rushed back together. There was
Time Waster Lad saw, for the second time, the creation of the universe.
He wondered if he'd entered into an entirely new universe and was about
to become some kind of Galactus analogue, but then he caught a glimpse
of him and his teammates fighting the Anti-Drizzt [FWII again] and
realized that this was one of those stories where time loops back in on
itself in a kind of Nietzschean way. He waited. From the glowing cloud
of creation stars and planets began to congeal, the Earth itself formed,
and he gradually drifted back down into it until he found himself in his
own body in the present.
He rubbed his eyes, finally, and looked at the time on his laptop. One
minute had passed.
"Oh come on," said Time Waster Lad.
He went back to catching up on more TV shows. It went on like that for a
while. He'd managed to stabilize himself after the first burst of
time-wasting, especially when he started playing more games and
interacting more with other people, but every so often the time-wasting
acceleration would hit him again, giving him a somewhat different future
each time but always ending up in the same place.
It wasn't *all* bad, though. The third time he ended up in the Rear-End
of Time, he heard a voice calling to him: "Hi, cutie!"
He looked up and saw, wearing the Time Crapper's robes, the familiar
face of Tamela. "Oh hi!" he said. "What are you doing here?"
"Well," she said, "that was the final outcome after the Time Crapper and
I were split. He erased himself from history, in the end, and I took his
"Just like the original Time Trapper and Glorith, I guess," said Time
Waster Lad, clearly being written by a writer who had never let go of
referencing arcane comics plots.
"I wonder if he ever really existed apart from me, in a sense. Maybe he
created me, as a result of his initial experiments with time, as the
person he always wanted to be."
"Wow," said Time Waster Lad.
They talked for a while, about everything and nothing. Time Waster Lad
now had those conversations with the Time Crapper who was Tamela (he had
no idea which number she was) when he reached the Rear-End of Time.
Still, he was getting a little tired of it, and after the seventh time
he witnessed the death and rebirth of the universe he decided to talk to
someone about it. He randomly dialed Bad-Timing Boy.
"Hi," he said. "Listen, I've been going through some stuff..."
"Me too." Bad Timing Boy laughed. Time Waster Lad wanted to talk, but he
coudln't even begin to put it into words.
"Listen," said Bad Timing Boy. "I know things have been tough lately,
but they could be worse. At least we're safe..."
The alarm went off. The LNHQ was under attack.,
Well I primarily blame William Hope Hodgson's House of the Borderland
for this. Also reading Drew's wonderful recent arc on Burst Beetle
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