Thanos: Dead Men Tell No Tales #3
Written by Anomaly, Edited
"DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES"
Continues from issue #1 and issue #2 of Thanos: Dead Men Tell No Tales
"The devil has the farthest perspectives for god - that is why he stays so far away from him. The devil, in other words, is the oldest friend of insight" --Friedrich Nietzsche
It was not often the devil was allowed to appear before the
great gathering. It was even less frequent that he would be allowed to speak.
But he had been chosen to speak at a trial that would ripple forth and alter
Mephisto waited in his stygian realm for the proper moment.
Then an aperture would be opened and he would stand in the great hall of
manifestations; Mephisto nervously plucked at one of his demons eye balls,
impaling on each of his fingers completely through and swallowing the eyeball in
a single motion, as he waited. The hall of manifestations was a realm where the
abstracts were given form, and cosmic justice was dealt out by a mulitversal
entity who was feared by all. His Title was spoken in whispers across the
galaxies To some he was called the Dread Tri-Judge and his fearsome three headed
visage inspired terror in all who had the unfortunate happenstance to cross his
path, for his judgments were final.
When the great aperture appeared there was trepidation even
in Mephisto’s steps as he walked through the gate. However, the fact that he
was chosen by her gave him faith. The hall of manifestations was a terrible site
to behold as the true essence of a Celestial was manifested before him. Even
Mephisto had to shield his eyes from the glory of what appeared to be a soul of
a God. The essence was like raging fire engulfing itself, and brightness was all
around it and radiating out of its midst like color of amber. In addition,
standing next to the reveled essence of the soul was an armored representative
of the great Celestials. He was called the "One Above All” and the soul
of the Celestial was under his charge. But the leader of the Celestials armored
form paled before the unsheathed essence of the deceased Celestial.
On a great throne of bronze was the Dread Tri-Judge who had
three faces that were like those of men, save they were hewn from stone and were
white like wool.
When he spoke, it was like thunder in the firmament, and
black clouds formed in the Hall of Manifestations, "MEPHISTO, YOU HAVE BEEN
GIVEN VOICE BY SHE WHO IS THE ANTITHESIS OF FOREVER. THE GATHERING BEFORE YOU IS
JUDGING THE ACTIONS OF ONE OF ETERNITY'S MANIFESTATIONS DURING THE SECOND HOSTS
VISIT TO EARTH. THE CRIME WAS DISCOVERED BY THE LEADER OF THE LANDING PARTY. THE
PERPETRATOR OF THE CRIME WAS THE CELESTIAL WHO WAS CALLED THE GOLDEN ONE. A
GREAT BATTLE ENSUED AND IT TOOK THE ENTIRE HOST TO SUBDUE HIM, THROUGH THE
WEAPON GIVEN TO HIM BY GALACTUS HE WAS FINALLY SLAIN. BUT HIS SPIRIT HAS
APPEALED AND SINCE THE CELESTIAL HOST ASKED A MEMBER OF THE GATHERING FOR HELP
THE FINAL JUDGMENT IS OURS. SPEAK MEPHISTO YOURS IS THE LAST VOICE TO BE HEARD
BEFORE THE VERDICT SHALL BE RENDERED.”
Mephisto looked around the gathering and next to the Dread
Tri-Judge was he who was forever the man-like entity who clothed himself in the
raiment of stars.
On his left hand side was the great Galactus who was from another universe. A universe with a different Eternity, with different concepts he was as ever the alien. Mephisto spoke with arrogance as he addressed the great cosmic gathering before him.
"I speak for her. She thinks that the crime by the
Celestial was not a crime and will one day play a part in the mosaic that is
Eternity and asked me to stand as a proxy. When she asked me to speak for her,
she called me as an expert witness. For the actions of the Celestial in question
are of a genetic nature, genetic manipulation if you will, and thus considered
evil. And am I not the manifestation of evil?" A dread silence filled the
comic gathering as he paused to collect his ancient thoughts. Mephisto grinned
sardonically as his serpent tongue flickered in and out of his hellish maw.
“Although I was not aware that one of the mighty Celestials was on trial, it
is irrelevant" Mephisto’s tone was condescending and mocking. The One
Above All moved a leviathan like limb toward Mephisto’s direction, and
Mephisto seemed to cringe, as the great limb seemed to threaten ominously as it
pointed in the stygian lord’s direction.
Energies of an unknown nature began to crackle around the One Above All,
and a great white light filled the gathering. All began to take cover, but a
mere gesture from the dread Tri-Judge was enough to stay his hand.
“I WILL BROOK NO MORE INTERRUPTIONS IN MY COURT, ANY
FURTHER ACTIONS SHALL BE DEALT WITH MOST HARSHLY. CONTINUE,” said the Living
Tribunal as he gestured for the stygian lord to speak his mind.
"Why should evil exist?” He paused as if for effect,
“is it hunger that makes one evil?” And the lord of evil looked at the
Galactus, “Is it appetite? When the great Galactus has plenty of food he can
see his place in the scheme of things, and how he will give back to the universe
far more then he has taken.” The Lord of Lies grinned malevolently but then he
continued, "but when he is hungry then even Galactus is in doubt and he can
no longer see his place in the great mosaic. And certainly they whom he devours
can see no good in it." Galactus eyed the Lord of Evil with contempt as if
to say with a glance that he would not forget Mephisto’s slight. “Perhaps it
is love that causes evil? Perhaps if we lived alone we would have little
trouble.” Mephisto glared at Mistress Love and her companion Sire Hate who
were also among the gathering, "and if something were to happen to one’s
mate,” Mephisto continued emphasizing certain words, "and she is carried
off then there is no rest. Only turmoil and angst. Or perhaps…” said
Mephisto “…evil springs from ill temper,” and Mephisto’s eyes met the
One Above All, the leader of the Celestials. "The moment we begin to lose
our temper, we are undone. Perhaps
it is fear,” and Mephisto looked at the dreadful forces of Chaos and Order.
“Even if it is the twigs breaking or the leaves rustling, it causes us lack of
peace and we have to sleep with one eye open and one ear alert, we are always in
Mephisto stopped as the cosmic gathering seemed to be listening to Mephisto’s every word. “But in truth it is none of these,” said Mephisto, “neither love, nor fear, nor ill temper or even hunger, but all that is evil is due to our different and unique natures. Galactus is different from Love and Hate, and Love and Hate different from the Lords Chaos and Order, therefore I conclude that your evil is not my evil and each fulfills a purpose. Even as Galactus devours a planet, it is done in purpose and the universe could not exist without it. This DNA will serve a purpose, or so my mistress believes, and she would not seek it to perish because of the Celestials, who seek to control every facet of their creation. Let them also know that they too must serve and follow their place in the scheme of things.”
“THE LIVING TRIBUNAL HAS REACHED HIS VERDICT AND ALTHOUGH
THE GOLDEN ONES CRIME WILL STILL BE PUNISHED BY THE CELESTIALS, HIS CREATION, A
STRAND OF GENETIC MATERIAL THAT IS A COMBINATION OF DEVIANT STRAIN AND ETERNAL
STRAIN, SHALL SURVIVE, AND SHALL ONE DAY MANIFEST ITSELF IN THE GENE POOL.
SO DECREES THE LIVING TRIBUNAL."
Then all the assemblage began to depart and Mephisto also
departed to his own realm where he was met by a rat like creature "You done
well, Lord of Lies, the mistress is very pleased and you will be rewarded for
“Then tell me this, what does Mistress Death want of the
Celestial DNA and why does she want it to exist in the scheme of things, is it
not a celestial affair?”
The mouthpiece of Death, which had manifested itself as a
rat with biped characteristics spoke, its words like venom. "You were to
gain the Celestials’ anger, it was this that caused the Tribunal to rule
against him, and she knew that you and you alone could accomplish the task. That
way she will not be blamed and the Celestial will not hold anything against
her.” With that the mouthpiece of death was gone and Mephisto wondered what
would become of the DNA. He looked on at the one who carried it in his genetic
structure. "We will be seeing each other. Alars and I will be curious to
see how your offspring turns out and why Mistress Death seemed to have such a
“We may lie with our
lips, but we tell the truth with the face we make when we lie" -- Friedrich
Mentor had called a family meeting at the request of his
son, Eros. The subject at hand was his other son, Thanos, who had done something
so strange that young Eros had begun to fear for his mother’s life. Eros was
thin and lanky with chestnut color hair and eyes that could change color by will
alone. In contrast, Mentor’s build was wider and more physically impressive.
He pushed his hand through his white hair, which was full and course. And
queried aloud "Where is Thanos and why has he not answered my
summons?" Mentor’s mind was similar to Thanos in the respect that they
both did things for reasons. Mentor had to know Thanos’ reason, and had every
faith in him, for it was obvious to Mentor that Eros had not seen the
circumstances correctly and was perhaps misinformed.
When Thanos walked into his father's chamber, Eros was talking to his mother, Sui-San, and Mentor was pacing nervously. Eros was the first to acknowledge his brother, “Greetings brother, we have been waiting on you for some time now."
Eros began to pour himself a drink, and offered Thanos one
also. "I will decline, brother, you have enough vice for both of us,"
Thanos showed no emotion when he spoke and his face was like immovable stone.
Eros glared at Thanos and then Eros reached out and began to touch Thanos with
his mind. He could feel its sickening touch against his cortex and was not
pleased. He spoke aloud a single word "sensulist" and with utter
disgust. Thanos hit Eros with the back of his hand. Blood was everywhere as Eros
cradled his broken nose with both hands cupped tightly to his face.
"You will find Thanos’ mind not as easy to
manipulate, as our mother’s."
“Enough of this, the both of you, such behavior will not
be tolerated especially in my presence," boomed Mentor.
Sui-San was in tears, but quickly found her stride as she
challenged her darker son's motives. "What is this gift Eros was telling me
of? Thanos, I have always cared for you, loved you."
"Spare me the rhetoric, you are still under the
chemical dependence of my sensualist brother and I will not speak to his
Sui-San was enraged and slapped Thanos across the face. The
effect was more than the mere forces of the blow, but in his mind, he felt
betrayal. Thanos began to walk out of the chamber when his father called out to
him, “Thanos, they do not understand you like I do, how your mind works, how
quickly you learn and adapt."
"Do you?” said Thanos coldly, "Even your mind
is but a pale shadow compared to my own, you are all like children before me!”
Thanos grinned sardonically, "Goodnight mother." Mentor did not
attempt to stop his son for he felt it better if he had time to think on it.
Thanos contemplated how he would deal with his sibling, and
he still had to give his gift to his mother. For as long as she was under his
brother's control, she would never truly be free. He did not fear retribution
from his father for he knew that his father who had been his teacher had the
most respect for his mind and would never do anything as long as he was seeking
knowledge. Although his brother was addicted to every pleasure, he too had his
vices "pride - his one fatal flaw.”
Thanos walked over to the great Plaza in the middle of
Titans Square. Within the plaza was the web, a great collection of wormholes and
portals to over a thousand worlds. The Farcaster Gates had been set up by
I.S.S.A.C., a sentient computer in Titan’s early days. It was through this
series of dimensional travel gates that Mentor had populated Titan and exchanged
knowledge with other civilizations throughout the galaxy. Thanos had already
visited many worlds and had learned many disciplines, from abstract physics to
four-dimensional geometry, which was used in the construction of modern time
travel machines. During his visits to other worlds, he had made certain
observations. For example, the world he was now going to was not heavily
trafficked by other Eternals, nor was it trafficked by the other worlds, which
were hooked to the Farcaster Gates. The gravity alone made the planet
uncomfortable. Add on a hardcore group of zealots that lived for the sake of
combat and it was easily understood why this world was not a tourist attraction.
Thanos made the necessary adjustments and placed a strange helm over his purple
pate. He soon found himself standing on the planet of Vandus.
Large heavily limbed creatures called Taurians were the
dominant life forms. Other races cultivated them for their physical prowess and
size often exploiting them. Seeing as how their technology was limited and most
of them could be trained, it was quite easily understood how they made up the
greater force of bodyguards and servants within their galaxy.
But Thanos did not come seeking a slave or a bodyguard; he
wished to experience what the orange-hued Taurians called “the gift.” Thanos
had been observing the tribe for some time and had learned many things about
their culture. Thanos spoke a challenge in the high tongue of Aruk. An
impressive looking specimen came forth to answer, his thick hide and thicker
limbs ready to bless Thanos with the gift.
Thanos clenched his fists but was surprised by the speed of
the great orange Goliath. He was also encumbered by the planet’s gravity. He
moved as one who moves in water. The Tuarian easily struck him off his feet with
a single blow. The Titan’s head concussed against the rocky terrain but was
unhurt as he raised his great bulk for a counter attack. The Tuarian’s eyes
were like slits, and his toothless maw shot a kind of spittle that blinded
Thanos. The Titan was immediately struck with a series of repeated blows that
were both powerful and skillful, striking vital spots on the Titan’s body. His
limbs effectively paralyzed, Thanos was in no danger, but he had not counted on
the Tuarians being so formidable. But he was ever adaptive and his limbs were
once again under his control. However, he feigned weakness to draw his opponent
in and used utility of movement to conserve strength and wait for the proper
moment. The Tuarian struck another great blow, causing spittle and blood to fly
from Thanos’ mouth in all directions. Soon the Tuarian made a fatal
miscalculation and there was an opening in his guard. There it was, not drastic,
but enough for Thanos to strike him with an uppercut, completely dislocating the
Tuarian’s jaw. Thanos began to get used to the effects of the world's gravity
and was soon in a position of superiority. Although the Tuarian was bleeding, it
still had fight and began to trade blows in a pugilistic manner. The two
warriors fought valiantly and it was unsure who would walk away. But a telling
blow was delivered, and Thanos fell before Taurian and was helpless when it
delivered the fatal blow.
Thanos removed the helm and took out the cable, which was linked directly to the Titan's cortex. This cyberlink connected his consciousness to a robotic simulacrum. The simulacrum was covered by a layer of flesh and blood and the cyberhelm could project his consciousness to any planet within the makeup of the web. Apparently, there was something wrong with his link and he had lost his connection to the world in question and his simulacrum. Another robotic double could easily be constructed. That was no problem, however, he could not easily replace the knowledge that was lost or the time that was wasted. There were still some flaws in the process but it was clear that he could download his conscience into a simulcrum if he desired. Thanos sat for a moment in contemplation and then "revelation" - Perhaps it had not been a complete loss. Yes, he had found a way to deal with his brother.
Continued in Dead Men Tell No Tales #4
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