Marvel/DC: Shards of Destiny #4
Written by Jim Seals and Jeff Olson,
Edited by Jim Seals
Shards of Destiny
Gambit Part Two: The Claviers Arrived
Galactus vision was clouded over, as he slowly, but gradually returned to consciousness, darkness giving way to the unbridle fury of light. His eyes jolted open and he searched his surroundings closely, only to find that he was lying face upward on some time of laboratory table. What appeared to be monitory medical instruments were plugged into his body. He moved only to find that constraints were well in place, confining him onto the table.
Overhead a massive monitor screen was placed and active, displaying the unconscious form of the Silver Surfer, dark smoke arose from his limp form, towering over the ex-herald turned turncoat, God-Stalker had his back to the screen and was quickly departing, heading toward the corridors below, hands clenched.
"Hmm," Galactus murmured, his once mighty voice that struck fear into the hearts of millions was still weak and frail. "Fascinating. What would make strange bedfellows quarrel in such a manner?"
"No! This ends now, God-Stalker! You and I!" The Silver Surfer arose from the twisted remains of the computer core. "Your holy quest dies! Now!"
"I think not," God-Stalker said, with morbid humor. "For I am! A Celestial and not ever you, holder of the power cosmic, can destroy one as powerful as I!" Beams of pure energy crackled from his extend fingers. But the Silver Surfer was already airborne and soaring throughout the base, blast of cosmic energy slamming the Celestials massive armored chest. "My you are bold, Herald of Death."
"Fortune favors the bold!"
An explosion sounded, rocking the entire base to its lunar core, but it wasnt from either the Celestial or the ex-herald to the devourer of worlds.
Then the alarms sounded, God-Stalkers vision turned toward the main view screen. "No . . ." The image of an unknown spacecraft appeared on the screen. It soared downward repulsor beams roaring to life slamming into the different power cores throughout the base. The craft slightly pulled upward, and the blue white emblem of the Fantastic Four stood in sheer defiance to the Celestials most sacred desires. "No!" God-Stalker bellowed louder, the deck plates underneath his feet. "Not now! Why didnt the sensor grids warn me of there approach?"
"That was my work, God-Stalker," the Silver Surfer said, his hand glowing with blue green energy. "Before you attracted me with your Galactus fašade, I deactivated the main sensor grids to allow the Fantastic Four undetected access to the base. This ends now!"
The control center was bathed in darkness, "Computer . . . target the craft bearing zero-zero-seven-mark-three-nine, fire all weapons."
"No! Reed! Sue! Get out of there! Now!" the Surfer called out in the hopes that somehow his warning could travel the void between them and penetrate the vacuum of the void. To no avail. The unholy wrath of the bases upgraded weaponry overtook the primitive craft, engulfing it in a hellish blaze, of burning debris. It slammed, noise first, into one of the key power cores of the base, plunging the command center in utter darkness. The emergency lights kicked on and the entire lunar base was paved in bright crimson red. "No!"
"You were right when you said that this ends now, Surfer," God-Stalker murmured turning his attention away from the static filled view screen. He casted his dark vision toward the gleaming corm clad herald in the center of the command center, his body shinned, dimly, from what little light was left in the command center, mostly being created from static plagued screens that lined the walls and command consoles. "This is will end now! But not in the way that you wished it!" God-Stalker laughed, beams of sheer energy lanced forth from his covered eyes.
The Surfer soared upward but could not gain enough speed in time to pull free of beams range. They struck the herald in the small of his back sending him flying backward, striking one of the static view screens and shattering it, into a million different shards. And darkness greeted him.
God-Stalker turned to see five forms, humanoid forms, and burn brightly in the eerie light of living flame! Demented shadows danced across them, a hue of green from the shield, which the Green Lantern had thrown up just in time to save his new found allies from the weapons that claimed their valiant vessel, encompassed them. "Its clobbering time!" the Thing roared, running forth, escaping the safety of the Lanterns shield. Fist ready for a fight.
"You said it, Ben," Johnny Storm, the Human Torch called out. "Flame on!" And with those words Storms entire body, not just his hand that was giving the room new light, erupted into sheer living flame. He leaped into air, and followed close pursuit of his friend.
"Ben, Johnny," Reed Richards, better known as Mr. Fantastic leader of the world renowned super hero family the Fantastic Four, called out. "Hold God-Stalker at bay! Green Lantern," he turned his head to face the one who had brought them here to the aid of a fallen comrade, "go. Find Galactus! The Fantastic Four will try to hold God-Stalker here as long as we can! But if what you told us is true concerning the Brothers then Galactus must be found, at once!" The black haired young man gave off a brisk nod of acknowledgment, then a green outlined fell over his muscular form and he soared toward the main access corridor. "Susan! Help the Silver Surfer, he looks like hes in bad shape."
His wife, Susan Storm, a.k.a. the Invisible Woman, threw a shield around both her and her husband just in time to stop burning hot pieces of debris and shrapnel from scolding them. "What are you going to do, Reed?" she asked over her shoulder, already heading in the Surfers direction.
"Going to reach out and touch someone, Susan. Trust me, go!" Mr. Fantastic replied with a sudden jerk of his head in the Surfers direction, turning his attention to a static filled monitor. He was quickly rerouting emergency power to the counsels command controls. The screen activated, casting a dark green and black hue upon his visage. "Lets see . . ."
Green Lantern soared throughout the labyrinth of corridors and access ports that made up the entire of the massive lunar base. "This is going to take some time . . ." he murmured, finally picking a corridor and then soaring down it with the utmost of ease. The red emergency lights darkened the halls. "Where is he?"
Here, the booming, yet weak voice of Galactus boomed in his head for a moment or two the Green Lantern was taken aback, he suddenly stopped. I know who you are Kyle Rayner and I am also aware of your purpose for me. Open your mind to me, Kyle Rayner.
"Okay," the Green Lantern murmured not truly understanding what was happening. He did as he was told and his mind was flooded with images. First it was all a blur, then as moments passed, he felt and unsettling ease wash over him. The images cleared, and he found himself "staring" upon the layout for the entire base. It was set up in a blueprint manner, and a bright red line blazed through certain tunnels and access ports, stopping quite a ways onward.
Follow the instructions, Green Lantern, and they lead you to my position.
Green Lantern nodded, turned around and went the other direction, in search of Galactus.
The red lettering emerged in bold on the screen before Reed Richards, signaling to him that hed have to change his strategy. "Hmm," he pondered, formulating another means of attacking the defensive block that was in-between him and obtaining victory. He typed it into the computers main terminal and once again a small warning sound rang out, and the words ACCESS DENIED reappeared.
The Silver Surfer moaned to consciousness, a sharp stabbing pain pierced through his chest, much like a hot blade. Upon his vision clearing up he stared into the beaming, yet concerned visage of the Invisible Woman, she was propping his head up with a small slender hand. "Susan?" he gasped, with squinting eyes. "How? I saw your craft explode at the hands of God-Stalker."
"Yes, it is a long story," she said, turning her gaze toward the battle waging forth between Ben and Johnny and the seven foot Celestial. And from the looks of things they were not having much success keeping God-Stalker at bay. "Surface it to say: We need your help, Norrin Radd."
The Surfer nodded. Arose from Susans gentle embrace. "I shall. My thanks, Susan Richards," he nodded. Upon stepping on his silver surfboard he launched himself into battle, beams of pure cosmic energy launching forth from his extended hands slamming God-Stalker in the small of his back.
"Ah, Surfer, I see you are not dead yet," God-Stalker said with morbid amusement. "Ill have to rectify that situation." And beams of sheer energy that rivals even the power cosmic lanced forth.
The Green Lantern entered one of the main laboratories of the lunar base, only to discover the massive devourer of worlds strapped down, to a massive bio-bed that was installed directly into the far wall. Enormous bands of blue energy held him into place, and what appeared to me medical instruments were plugged into his barren skin, in areas where the armor did not cover, they appeared to be monitor his heart and vitals (or whatever was his equivalent to such things). He seemed to be engrossed in the images on the active view-levitating screen before him. "My God . . ."
"God, Kyle Rayner," Galactus rumbled, the view screen before him, levitated to the side, allowing him to gaze upon his would-soon-to-be savior, "had nothing to do with this." His words were soon followed by a scream of utter pain, his massive white eyes squinted, and his hands started to tremble. Soon the episode of pain was gone, his head lowered in defeat, a sigh of relieve escaped his thin lips.
"Whats wrong?!" Green Lantern uttered, soaring upward and stopped shy of eye level with the great devourer, his shoulders squared off, in a futile attempt to hide the fear coursing through him.
Galactus hushed, slowly, "The hunger that consumes me, and urges me to consume entire worlds for energy and sustenance is growing. I fear that in my weakened state I can do no good in order to aid you or your allies in the battle with God-Stalker. I am dying."
Kyle Rayner pondered this declaration for a moment or two. Look at Galactus and then for some unknown reason he casted his gaze toward his green power ring on his right hand. He stared at it, as if it was a newfound ameba under a microscope. And then new revelation dawned on him. "I do not know if this will work. Ive never done this before," Green Lantern declared with a shrug, then added as an after thought, "but in theory it should . . ."
"What is that?" Galactus asked, raising his head upward, and trying to regain whatever dignity he might have left.
"I think if I can re-channel the energy stored within my power ring and have it merge with you, it should in theory provide you with some energy to survive." He looked back from studying his ring into Galactus pure white eyes. "It is a temporary solution, yes, but at least its a solution. And you should have enough energy to battle with God-Stalker."
He nodded. "Do it."
Green Lantern nodded and backed away slightly, aiming his power ring in the direction of Galactus armored chest. And with a heavy breath he released the ultimate power contained within such a small vessel. It lanced out, striking Galactus in the chest, and merging with the weakened power cosmic, re-fortifying it, straightening it. Galactus could feel the power, it was coursing through him, giving him new life, merging with every cell of his being. He could feel that he was . . . He was reborn!
"The power. The power! I can feel the power!" Galactus roared, with a minuet flexing of his muscles, the blue energy bands shattered, the bio-bed gave way, sending debris and burning hot shrapnel in every direction. The Green Lantern was caught in the midst of the explosion, the shock wave struck him in the chest sending him flying into an unmoving wall. In a blur of red Kyle Rayner stared up into the massive monstrosity that was the catalyst for millions upon countless millions of deaths across this realms cosmos. And the devourer of worlds stood there, shoulders squared off. His once pure white eyes burned with a green fire. "God-Stalker beware! Vengeance is at hand!"
And even though Green Lantern knew that it was the right thing to do, he couldnt help himself but to ask: What have I done? What have I released upon us all?
To Be Continued . . .
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