Silver Surfer/Red Shift: Conflicting Agenda #2
Written by Marvelite with assistance by Anomaly and Morfex
Logo created by Lord Thanos
Published by the Cosmic Powers Fan Fiction Group in

Characters are the properties of Marvel Comics

Conflicting Agendas

(Note: For other stories taking place in this continuity, see the POTU Archive Page.  However, you do not need to read previous stories to understand this one.)

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Continued from Conflicting Agendas #1

The Present… New York City

(Following the Silver Surfer’s appearances in Powers Cosmic, Captain Marvel, and Maximum Security.  Before his appearances in The Defenders and before the events in Conflicting Agendas #1 took place)

Alicia Masters joined the Silver Surfer as he overlooked the metropolis known as New York City.  She could tell he was tired of the place, not comfortable with the people and culture surrounding him.  That is why she planned a trip to Hawaii, a chance for her to show him another part of Earth, to change the scenery.

“I grow wary of this place,” the Silver Surfer sighed as he holds the hand of Alicia Masters.

“I know, Norrin.  But I’m sure you will love Hawaii.  It is very beautiful there.”

“No, Alicia.  It is not just this city… it is this whole planet.  Why won’t you let me take you to the stars, show you my haven?”

“I’ve seen the stars, Norrin.  I cannot leave now.  I feel needed here, among my fellow human beings… Please, Norrin, don’t do this to me… I am tired of adventures.  I just want to be with you.”

Silver Surfer let go of her hand.  “I’ve seen this planet.  Its beauty is tainted by mankind’s ugly ways.”

Alicia began to weep.  “Norrin, I cannot let you do this to me.  I can’t just drop my life here and venture out with you.  Please don’t ask me to choose, I don’t think I could bare it.”

The Silver Surfer’s voice turned cold.  He knew what he was putting her through, but discussing it would not help the matters at this juncture.  He jumped on to his board.  “I will be back, Alicia, but today the Silver Surfer must be alone.  In solitude I must think.”

Silver Surfer hovered into the skies.  His mind was moving in all different directions.  A part of him reflected on recent events.  The death of Galactus and his warnings of a greater evil to come.*  His fellow team members in the Powers Cosmic disappearing.**  And the recent events with Ego and the Kree.***

(*See Marvel’s Galactus: The Devourer.  **See the latest editions of CPU’s Powers Cosmic.  ***See Marvel’s Maximum Security.)

Then his mind returned to Earth and Alicia Masters.  Earth wasn’t all that bad.  In fact, it was the closest thing he had to a home in many ways.  But he felt himself drawn to the stars.  He also felt himself drawn to Alicia Masters, a woman who he had always had attachments to.

He remembered the first time he laid eyes on her.  As herald to Galactus, he led the World Devourer to Earth.  It was her face that showed him everything worth saving on this planet.  It was her face that changed the course of his life.  No longer could he serve Galactus.  He could not let her and this entire planet be destroyed to serve the needs of one being.  He betrayed the World Devourer and lost his freedom as a result.  For years, he was exiled on Earth.  It was during this time period he saw the dark side of Earth’s humanity.

He now had his freedom.  And he in no way despised the humans on Earth.  He had come to their rescue countless times.  But his devotion was to Alicia Masters, not to them.  He did not wish to have Earth as his home but the stars instead.  Alicia’s calling was to Earth though.  Would her love now be the second barrier to trap him?

Scrier stood, still in space . Behind him was the greatest construction in all the universe: Taa II.  It was built by Galactus.  Planets revolved around it as if it were a sun.  Its power was beyond comprehension.  It stood in the center of space.  It represented a universe long dead.  

But he was Scrier.  He was older than time itself, or so he claimed.  He was even before the universe Taa II represented.  And he waited.  He knew who his opponent was.  More importantly, he knew the consequences of the coming battle.

The universe suddenly tore before his eyes.  Out of the opening came his opponent.  First, he saw his dark red boots, then his eyes gazed at his opponent’s two powerful swords.  He possessed the Power Cosmic.  For his opponent was Red Shift, the final herald of Galactus, but he did not fear, for he was older than Galactus himself and his power was greater than that of Red Shift.

“It is useless, Red Shift, you are powerless to defeat me, and you shall not proceed any farther.”

“You are a worthy opponent, but my master has given me the tools I need,” the former herald responded.  With that he rose his arms and with the swords produced from the Power Cosmic, he sliced a gap into the universe, through which a flood of great power pushed the cloaked being back.

Red Shift’s master was determined to win this battle and with it the war.  Channeling through the rip made in space, energy continued to attack Scrier and push him backward.

Scrier covered himself with his cloak, dodging the power blasts pushing against him.  He then disappeared from the scene, reappearing behind Red Shift’s back.  He quickly made his move and blasted the two-faced herald.

Red Shift was taken by surprise, but quickly reentered the battle.  Scrier could tell Red Shift’s powers and abilities were added upon since he last watched Silver Surfer and Red Shift duel preceding the death of Galactus.  

Scrier shot at Red Shift, who formed a portal to dodge the blast.  Red Shift then charged at the cloaked being, flinging his sword across Scrier’s neck.

Scrier grabbed his neck in pain and fell backward in agony, while Red Shift charged forward, set on completing his mission.

Scrier recovered himself, but he was too late.  Red Shift was on his way to Taa II and he was left helpless to follow, for he was forbidden from entering the orbit of Taa II.

Silver Surfer stood, one side of him reflecting Earth, the planet he was overlooking, and the other side reflecting space and its many wonders.  He was contemplating his purpose and his future, when suddenly, from deep space, he sensed a calling.  A very familiar one.  He rode upward and was soon visited by a silver board, identical to the one on his feet.  Immediately he found he could command the board and he knew it was in fact his own – even though he also knew the board under his feet was his own as well.

He felt as if it was speaking to him and telling him what he needed to do.

He looked down into its silver reflection to see images of the near future, images recorded by his future self.  A voice accompanied the images.  The voice of himself, “You must prevent these events from happening.  The universe is ending.  I am convinced things are not how they should be.  Something happened.  Something is not right.”  The board’s surface then portrayed images of events* in the very near future, seen through the eyes of his future self.  Earth was being destroyed by natural disasters, international wars, and life-consuming plagues.  The images switched to other worlds showing every civilization suffering the same fate.  Planets were being destroyed and the very stars were shaking.  He saw the dialogue between his future self and Scrier, and he witnessed the cosmic cauldron slowly devouring the universe’s matter.  His future self then flew into the storm, being torn by its consuming flames, until he was snatched by Eternity, the very sentience of the universe.

(*See last issue.)  

Red Shift moved closer toward Taa II, the large structure created by the deceased Galactus.  It was the greatest technological achievement ever accomplished in the universe.  It was so large that planets revolved around it as if it were a sun.  It was the home of a god.  It was the home of Galactus.

However, now it was now vacant.  No one lived there.  No one except the Retaliator.

The Retaliator was unlike any of Galactus’ creations.  His current incarnation was not even a creation of Galactus in fact.  After the World Devourer’s death, he was created by Eternity to protect Taa II and the legacy of Galactus.*  His form was composed of Galactus’ Punisher Construct** and the Power Cosmic placed in the Destroyer armor.  Unlike the other creations of Galactus, the Retaliator did not have a sentient life before being given the Power Cosmic.  The other heralds of Galactus were sentient beings from different planets who were given the Power Cosmic so they could better serve him as his herald.  But the Retaliator was no such thing.  He had no sentient life.  Not until Eternity commanded him to watch the sanctuary of Galactus and guard it from outside forces.

(*See Powers Cosmic #9, **See Marvel’s Fantastic Four Vol. 1 #49 for his first appearance)

Though its sentient thoughts were not formed until after Galactus’ death, it was more devoted than any of Galactus’ creations at protecting its master’s legacy.

The Retaliator was in full alert and detected Red Shift approaching.  Its mind did not quite know how to view Red Shift.  He was considered a foe of Galactus by some but he was also entrusted with the Power Cosmic.

Retaliator flew out to approach Red Shift, its mechanical structure surging with the Power Cosmic.

“Welcome, Red Shift, what brings you to Taa II?”

“I come on a mission of great importance.  There is an object in which I must retrieve.”

“I am sorry but nothing is to leave Taa II.  This creation of Galactus must remain untouched.”

Red Shift smiled, as he wrapped his hands tight around his two swords.  “Very well…”

Silver Surfer quickly raced toward Taa II.  As he approached, he noticed the body of Scrier distanced away from the gigantic structure.  Normally, Scrier seemed quite formidable but this time he looked very distressed and vulnerable.

He came closer to it.  “Scrier, what is going on?”

“Silver Surfer, I am glad you are here, but I am afraid it may be too late.  Unless Red Shift is stopped, the entire universe will certainly be destroyed.”

Silver Surfer knew just how true Scrier’s statements were.  The images that showed the devastation that would soon be caused still penetrated his mind.  He still had no idea how Red Shift could destroy the entire universe and what Taa II had to do with his plans, but he had little time to find out.

His questions could be answered later.  Right now, time was of the essence.

He quickly headed toward Taa II.

Red Shift lifted his sword and charged toward Retaliator.

Retaliator stood and waited.  Inside the construct surged the lifeblood of Eternity himself, the Power Cosmic.  This was its weapon of choice.  An energy lance hit it with the force of a thousand meteorite.  This was enough to give it pause.  Red Shift did not leap, he simply willed himself forward and with a force equal to that in Eternity’s veins, it was so.

Red Shift struck with a multitude of unanswered strikes to the Retaliator’s abdomen and shoulders with seemingly no effect..

The Retaliator had been given sentience by Eternity himself and through this shell Eternity defended himself with fury.  He blasted at Red Shift with the Power Cosmic.

Red Shift screamed but the shoved his word into the construct, as an aperture of a considerable size made its pathway through Retaliator’s chest and out his backside.

“You should be dead… such power is quite intoxicating, won’t you agree?  Perhaps we should be partners, that is if you are truly alive as I sense.”

Retaliator wore a mask of grim determination, as he began to grow white hot.  The construct would spit on Red Shift’s face if he was created with the ability.  “I only serve the memory of my creator,” Retaliator answered.  The construct then blasted Red Shift with all of the Power Cosmic it could muster.  If such energy would not bring victory, it would turn to weapons under its control within Taa II itself.  Retaliator was confident it would not come to that, however.

The blasts threw Red Shift back.  He looked severely wounded.  At last, Retaliator looked victorious.

Red Shift, however, was still confident of his own victory, for he had a plan of his own.  “Pity,” he whispered.  He then made a commanding gesture with his hand, as sidecracks formed across the Retaliator’s armor.  All the seemingly ineffectual blows Red Shift landed were now opening up.

Red Shift charged forward and stabbed Retaliator in the chest, creating a miniature vortex then drew them both in.   A field of distortion was created about them. For as long as Red Shift willed the aperture to exist, none could distinguish where Retaliator ended and Red Shift began. The plan had worked to perfection.

"If you cannot beat them..." he muttered.  Using Retaliator's unlimited clearance, Red Shift easily tracked what might otherwise have taken several lifetimes to uncover, even with his cosmic senses.  Soon the object of his desires would be at hand.

Finished with Retaliator, he willed the portal to close.  Red Shift laughed and looked toward Taa II, his final destination, as Retaliator faded away, lost and nearly lifeless somewhere deep in space on the other end of Red Shift’s portal.

Red Shift glided toward Taa II, with Retaliator’s knowledge, he could easily navigate around the gigantic structure.  Inside, he found wondrous creations.  Labs filled with DNA of life from various planets, exhibits of artifacts taken from lost cultures, and technology never glanced upon by eyes other than a select few.

He then made his way to the heart of Taa II, the control room.  The sight was amazing.  Its size, like the rest of Taa II, was beyond belief.  Red Shift looked around and then quickly found what he sought.

“I have found it,” he whispered.  “I have found that which I seek.  Soon, Taa II will be destroyed and the universe will be yours.”

To Be Continued!

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