Powers Cosmic #10

Written and Edited by Morfex
Logo created by Lord Thanos
Published by the Cosmic Powers Fan Fiction Group in

Characters are the properties of Marvel Comics

Powers Cosmic #10
"Posterity" - Part Four: Reincarnations

(Note: This story continues takes place after Galactus: The Devourer!)

The Powers Cosmic are:

The Silver Surfer, Norrin Radd of Zenn La

Starglow, Shalla Bal of Zenn La

Firelord, Pyreus Kril of Xandar

Air-Walker, Gabriel Lan of Xandar

Nova, Frankie Raye of Earth

Continued from Powers Cosmic #9

Also see Powers Cosmic issue #6 and issue #7, and issue #8

Stop up the access and passage to remorse,
That no compunctious visitings of nature
Shake my fell purpose.
                             -Shakespeare, Macbeth I, 5

Upon concluding their assemblage,* the Cosmic Beings departed as quickly as they had arrived.

(* See POTU Spotlight #8: Obsequies, next issue for details.)

Strangely, time seemed to remain static beyond the limits of the Heralds’ presence, as evinced by the frozen Shi’ar vessels in the distance. Eternity had apparently given them an opportunity to grieve in peace.

Air-Walker turned to face Tyrant, whom they now knew was Morg. “Morg, despite your dark nature, you were loyal to Galactus. Have you no regard for his fate?”

Tyrant stared menacingly at the gathering of Heralds. “Bah! I am Morg no longer, Galactus-spawn! Unlike you, I was not rejoined with the Power Cosmic at the conclusion of the Cosmic Union.* I owe nothing more to him. I am the Tyrant forevermore, essential to the workings of this Universe. I have what I came for. Do not seek to thwart my vital purpose as you have that of the Devourer! I will not prove so easy a target!” Vacant orb in hand, the Tyrant disappeared in a swirl of hyperspacial mist.

(*See Cosmic Union #21 for details.)

Nova leapt toward the exact spot where the Tyrant had vanished. “No! Not this time! He murdered Ganymede’s husband! He killed me!!” She repeated the last three words over and over in frustration, firing energy bursts at the empty space where Tyrant had stood. Her friends stared in disbelief at the depths of her anguish. All but one.

Firelord was instantly by her side. “Frankie, now that we know who he is, it will only be a matter of time. We will have our righteous vengeance. You and I, together. He will pay for all his crimes. You have my word.”

Nova, angered by what she took for pity, turned and looked into Pyreus Kril’s eyes. But his words were not meant as gentle consolation. Firelord’s eyes burned with hateful fury. Nova nodded and said. “You’re right. We’ll have our chance soon enough, purpose or no purpose.”

Terrax spoke just loudly enough for the Surfer to hear. “I told you we should have let him die when we had the chance.”*

(*See Cosmic Union # 14 for details.)

Air-Walker knew that the words of Nova and Firelord were spoken in anger, but their intent concerned him. Would the members of the Powers Cosmic invariably come to cross-purposes?

Red Shift took the distraction by Tyrant as an opportunity to open a spatial hole of his own using his dual swords. “Farewell, Surfer. I go now to return to my second Master!” Norrin Radd glared in frustration at the wake of Red Shift’s departure. Yet another mystery for another time, he thought.

Plasma addressed her friends. “That was the being I told you about. The one that served Galactus when the Hunger overtook you all.”*

(* Plasma observed Red Shift in Powers Cosmic #4.)

All eyes suddenly fell upon Blue Shift. Nova put into words what everyone else was thinking. “So what’s your story, lady?”

The Atlantean woman called Andromeda addressed the group with poise and a noble bearing. “Like Nova, I am from the planet called Earth. Galactus rescued me from a terrible fate* and granted me great power on the same day as he empowered Red Shift. Despite this fact, Red Shift and I clearly had opposing intentions. When he began encouraging Galactus’ poisoning, I protested. He entombed me in the heart of a black hole from which I could not escape. Suddenly I appeared here, presumably summoned as all of you were. Rather than haphazardly delving into hostilities with Red Shift, I decided to bide my time and learn why we had been brought together. I serve no second Master, however. My loyalty is to the memory of the one who gave me another chance.”

(*See Namor #62 for Andromeda’s former fate.)

This seemed to satisfy the Powers Cosmic for the time being. The Surfer added, “Welcome. I have work with Atlanteans before. A noble, if stubborn breed.” The Surfer knew something of Andromeda’s past from his time on Earth, but decided that now was not the time for inquiries. He smiled genuinely, and Blue Shift seemed to take his lighthearted comment as a compliment.

Turning to the others, Norrin observed those still in attendance. Air-Walker, Firelord, Plasma, Nova, himself, Terrax, Blue Shift, and the Retaliator seemed intent on remaining to pay their last respects. The Surfer saw that emotions were in turmoil. He decided that, as the first Herald among them, he should speak. “My fellow Heralds, this is no longer a time for vengeance or battle. Eternity has given us this pause as a gift that we should not squander in fisticuffs. Let us take this all too rare occasion to actually gather our thoughts and pay our last respects to our former Master.”

Each being present nodded in silent assent. Each stared deeply into the brilliant star before them and allowed himself or herself to finally honor private memories uncluttered by the sheer overwhelming significance of Galactus’ passing.

Nova took one look at the star, undistracted by enemies or Cosmic Beings, and immediately tears of flame welled in her eyes.  She knew a side of Galactus that she felt no one else could have.  Although she would never utter the words aloud, she knew the truth that had been haunting her since she first came in contact with the Cosmic Being. She loved Galactus.  She understood him.

Now, she was afraid of what the future might hold.  A future without Galactus.  Suddenly, for the first time since her "death" at the hands of Morg, she felt cold throughout her body.  The coldness that her Master must be feeling now.  The coldness of death.

Her tears soon turned to suspicion.  Could Norrin Radd have done something more to save Galactus?  Did the Silver Surfer overstep his boundaries by taking the life of a Force of Nature? Her mind was racing with questions.  If only she had been there to change things, to talk Galactus out of his mad rage.  If only she could have made a difference.

Suddenly, she felt warmth radiating from the star, hitting her soul with comfort. It was not physical heat, per se, but something far more personal. She turned away from the star, looking toward an uncertain future but with calmness from within.  It was a calmness that she had not felt since she first took on the mantle of Herald to Galactus.

Firelord had a difficult time imagining what had transpired before he arrived.  He never felt himself to have been close to Galactus. He was always either a servant or an enemy to the World Devourer.  Now Galactus was dead, and he was in a state of disbelief.

Galactus was always so powerful.  He was a constant in the Universe.  Now, he was not so much saddened by Galactus' demise, as he was for the Universe's future. Every Herald knew something of the special role the Devourer played in the cosmic scheme of things. He suspected what the future held for a Universe without Galactus, and he knew no one could be prepared for what would come next.

Air-Walker kept going over in his head what he could have done differently. He was unsure if he had made the right decision to follow Epoch's orders instead of coming to the Surfer's aid against Galactus.  Now he was not sure of any of his decisions anymore.  He was not sure if he was fit for the position he held, and he was uncertain what lay ahead for the Powers Cosmic.

Could they survive without Galactus?  Could he?  Gabriel knew not what to do next, but he had to do something.  He had to show strength and leadership for himself and for his friends. They would turn to him for guidance, strength, courage, and direction. He must not fail his family.

Air-Walker knew their former Master perhaps better then any other. If there was any whom the Devourer would call friend it was Air-Walker. They had had long conversations which focused not as much on their past lives as men but on their futures as explorers and harvesters. Air-Walker had never had a problem with Galactus sating his Hunger to fulfill his purpose. If anything, there was respect for doing what he was created to do and not apologizing for it. Yet, Gabriel also understood why the races he came across wanted to destroy him. He knew one thing as he stared into the great stellar body that was once the Devourer. Gabriel Lan could not have done any better than Galactus.

It was not tears that the Surfer was shedding for Galactus although he had come to know Galactus quite well as his Herald. Like Firelord his thoughts were for the Universe. The Surfer knew as well as any that, if Galactus perished, so too did the Universe. It was a simple proposition but one that was weighty beyond measure. Would it take a week, a year, a millenium? None here could say, and none of the Cosmic Beings that might know would volunteer the information. The Surfer and his friends were left to ponder the future without guidance.

Plasma was embarrassed by the fact that she was relieved Galactus had died. She felt shame that her first reaction was concern for her own survival and well-being. Now that she was reunited with her birth body, she felt overwhelming relief despite the constant threat of the Hunger overtaking them.

Galactus had taken Norrin Radd from her. She was left on Zenn La to fend for herself with his child out of wedlock. Then, throughout recent decades, Galactus had used her and Zenn La in countless attempts to sway and influence his first chosen Herald.

Now, the Universe was finally free of the Devourer’s influence. Purpose be damned! What purpose could possibly justify the genocide of countless planets, or the tampering of souls to make them willing accomplices to such slaughter? She knew her opinion was not that of the majority, and kept her counsel to herself. But secretly, she thanked whatever deity might have finally answered the prayers of the billions slain and the millions wandering as a result of the Devourer’s existence.

Like Terrax and Blue Shift, the Retaliator’s private thoughts were unknown to the others present. Eventually he spoke aloud. “I go now to safeguard Galactus’ technological legacy. You are all welcome there as long as you do not threaten his home.” With that, the construct was gone.

This left the Silver Surfer, Air-Walker, Plasma, Firelord, Nova, Terrax, and Blue Shift present. Plasma suddenly gave Terrax a friendly embrace, surprising most of the others. “Tyros, how did you escape the barrier of your own making?”*

(*See Powers Cosmic #2-5 for details.)

Terrax purposely avoided the topic of Shalla Bal’s shocking transformation. “Like Blue Shift, I can only assume it was Eternity’s doing. My world is now sealed off from me. I would continue my travels with you for a time, if you will have me.”

Air-Walker smiled at him. “At the first sign of treachery, we go our separate ways, Tyros.”

Tyros grinned mischievously. “Agreed, fearless leader.”

Without warning, the star before them began to alter briefly in color and intensity. Suddenly, as if emerging from a stellar cocoon, a humanoid form emerged. The Heralds senses reeled at the identity of the man before them. Air-Walker was the first to verbalize his suspicions.

 “Master? Is that you?”

“No, dear friend, it is not your Master. Galactus has departed this plane. I am that which came before Galactus. I was once known as Galan. You may call me… the Keeper.”

On the opposite side of the Galactan sun, at the precise moment of Galan’s emergence, there was an equal and opposite discharge from the nascent stellar sphere. In moments, the Master of Guile had composed himself sufficiently to get his bearings, cloak his presence, and theorize how he might have been recreated.*

(*See Marvel’s Silver Surfer Graphic Novel by Lee and Kirby for Guile’s first appearance.)

 Continues in Posterity Part Five

To be continued in Posterity Part Five, found in this issue of Cosmic Powers Unlimited!.  Be sure to also check out our Cosmic Union Continuity Reference Page and Protectors of the Universe Reference Page for other stories in this continuity.  And don't forget to send some comments below or by e-mailing cpufeedback@yahoo.com 

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