Cosmic Union (The Directors' Cut) Issue #8

Written and edited by the Silver Surfer Message Board
With finishing edits by Morfex
Published by the Cosmic Powers Fan Fiction Group in
THE COSMIC POWERS UNLIMITED FANZINE ISSUE #8

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Editors' Note: This continues from last week's Cosmic Union #7!
Visit the Cosmic Unionverse Reference Page to go to any issue of this series!


ISSUE #8: "THE BEGINNING OF THE END?"

Cosmic Union Writers from the Silver Surfer Message Board: Asterisk, Anomaly,
Azmodi, Brother Voodoo, Grim, Marvelite, Morfex, Mystic, and Number 6.


Part One - Cosmic Reunions (Morfex)

Quasar and Captain Marvel had had a chance to get to know each other better as they caught up with the 'Star Master' vessel trailing Drax. They found they had a lot in common, and developed a friendly rapport quickly.

Drax found the very point in space where the conflict between Tyrant, Thanos, and Galactus had just taken place. The 'Star Master' ship was in close pursuit. Not coincidentally, the 'Io', war vessel of the Spinsterhood, arrived at the very same point in space tracking Tyrant. The ships joined airlocks, and quick introductions were made.

Quasar was surprised to find both Kismet and Moondragon on the Spinster ship. He had expected to see Ganymede and Jack of Hearts. They both seemed to recognize Genis, and still referred to him as Legacy.

Quasar took Kismet aside. "I've been looking for you! There's something you need to know about that little spud you grew on my back months ago."

"Yes, Quasar. I sensed its birth. I swear to you, I did not know it had been cross-pollinated. But once it was born, I wanted it to stay alive. I am sorry. My propagation instinct is overwhelming. It is one of the reasons I joined the Spinsterhood."

"I don't blame you. I just don't know what to do about it. Maybe we should meet with Starhawk together..."

With Xenith's help, Ganymede scanned for Tyrant using the 'Star Master' ship's sensors to amplify those of the 'Io'. She was not surprised to find residual traces of Galactus' presence. "Our next stop will be Taa II."

Moondragon gave her father Drax a warm smile and hug, surprising many there that had thought her to be more aloof by nature. "Father, it is good to see you!"

Drax's eyes flashed with a keen intellect recently recovered, but they also flashed with a ferocity of purpose that startled Moondragon. Drax pushed her gently, but abruptly away. "There is no time for this. I must find Thanos!" Suddenly, Drax fell to the floor, grasping at his chest, as if suffering from a heart attack.

Moondragon yelled out, "Father, what's wrong?"

Drax mouthed one word, "Kronos…"


Surrounding the outer worlds of the Sol system, Kronos writhed as the cosmic wave of disruption struck him. For had he not become Abstract as well? As his sentience dissipated, his last thoughts were of Thanos, the Mad Titan. "Don't do it, Thanos. I did, and it was nothing like I had hoped…"


Glorian sensed a gathering of cosmic entities, along with several recent spatial ruptures. He arrived to find two ships united as one hovering in the void of space. Before the cosmic audience, he made his announcement, and even in the vacuum of cold nothingness, his voice could be heard. "Hark! All ye who would know the portent of these events! I come with glad tidings! Our lord approaches! Soon shall arrive my master, the Universal!"


Adam Warlock had shattered Pip's Goddess soul disguise. But when he attempted to send Gamora and Pip to new bodies, nothing happened. Adam spoke. "It is too late. I should have foreseen this. The Soul World is suffering changes from this strange Union phenomenon. I am powerless to free you, so I must save you by restoring the cosmic order from outside. Finally, an incentive worth fighting for."

Gamora spoke. "Adam, I have no doubt that we and Soul World will survive. You will defeat Thanos, you will find a way to reverse the effects of the Union. You will do whatever it takes. That is one of the things… that I love most about you."

"Gamora please…"

Pip spoke up. "Listen up, Adam! I've known you two longer than I can remember, and I always knew you were perfect for each other. You're an idiot, always hidin' your emotions, scared that they might run out of control again. Maybe just the opposite will happen! Maybe if you acted like normal people and vented real feelings once in a while, control would come eventually. You'll never learn to be good at something if you're not willing to work at it. Trust me, buddy. Lettin' loose is the only way to get to know yourself, not all this 'brooding introspection' garbage."

Adam looked at Pip, then back at Gamora, and his expression was one they had not seen since before Adam had worn the Infinity Gauntlet, even before he withdrew to become a hermit even amid the joys of Soul world.

He spoke. "Gamora, I can't undo the past, but I can try to fight for
the future." He kissed her hand gently. Suddenly another tremor hit. Adam's face filled with grim determination. "I must go, my
friends."


Part Two - Synchronicity (Morfex)

Galactus knew what was coming next. He reached out with all his
senses and re-absorbed every iota of Power Cosmic he had ever given life or form...

... and in deep space, Firelord dissolved to nothing....

... and on a primitive planet, Terrax dissolved to nothing...

... and in a nameless asteroid field, a lifeless non-mechanoid Airwalker dissolved to nothing...

... and in the heart of a star, a lifeless Nova dissolved to
nothing...

... and in Thanos' lair, the Destroyer armor shimmered momentarily, then remained still...

… and on the Collector's vessel, within a display tube, an armored figure stirred slightly…

... and in the midst of Surtur's return to Asgard, the Silver Surfer was protected from the Power Cosmic drain by the protective mystical sheath Doctor Strange had had the foresight to cast around him back on Earth. For a while at least, the Surfer would remain a player in the cosmic game.


The Fantastic Four alerted the Avengers and the X-Men by viewscreen. Johnny Storm spoke anxiously. "Bring in reinforcements! We did everything we could for as long as we could, but we failed! The Negative Zone is pouring out into Manhattan!"

And in a private meditation chamber, Iron Fist felt the first tugs
of K'un L'un...

And by a shimmering lake, the Black Knight sensed the impending arrival of Avalon...

And as Wong nervously paged through ancient tomes seeking clues about the Union, he looked up at the calendar and realization hit. It was obvious. December 29, 1999. Two days until the new millenium. Surprised, he left the tomes and reached for the calendar to page through previous months. November 1993? October 1987? September 1981? August 1975? What was the meaning of this, a simple publication error? It would matter little if he did not find what the Master was looking for. He returned to his studies, intent on finding a reference to this Union event. Event? Calendar? Dropping the calendar and ignoring the tomes, Wong rushed down the extensive library shelves. Opening a protective glass box, he removed the dust encrusted scrolls of the Almanacs of Mu. They were really nothing more than astronomical calendars and historical data. Leafing roughly through the delicate parchment, he translated furiously, remembering a particular reference he had encountered his first day in the service of Doctor Strange. And there it was. "Union!"


Part Three - Enlightenment (Mystic)

Wong came running to the study with an ancient scroll that had been passed down from generation to generation of Sorcerers Supreme. It was part of some of the historical manuscripts that Doctor Strange had. One that he hardly ever looked at since it had little to do with casting spells or the usual nomenclature he dealt with.

Doctor Strange translated the text aloud as all became aware of what the Union was. "The passing of dimensions intersecting a single point in our universe all at the same time. The event tended to cause dimensional portals to open easily and even at times for dimensions to superimpose themselves over parts of this universe. Those in tune with a particular dimensions' energies could access them far better when intersecting this universe, allowing for greater power reserves to be called upon."

Warlock gathered the group to sit around the table. Only Doctor Strange, Warlock, and Starhawk remained. Thor and the Silver Surfer had not returned from Asgard, Quasar had left to track down Epoch, and Captain America was busy coordinating defenses with the Avengers and the X-Men against increasing extra-dimensional creatures. It all made sense now and a plan was formulating...

"This explains the tarot cards a bit more and we can tell who our
adversaries are," Doctor Strange commented. "Warlock, you were most likely chosen to counter Thanos."

"That is possible," he said, "Although I have recently discovered that the Magus and Goddess are involved as well."

"If I have been chosen," Doctor Strange continued, "Most likely Dormammu is involved also. Considering the dimensional threat, I'd say it is most likely."

"Maelstrom and Korvac were seen on Earth awhile back," Starhawk added.

"Yes. That brings Quasar and the Avengers in. Perhaps even you fit in there, Starhawk," Doctor Strange continued.

"For the Silver Surfer, Mephisto might be involved," Warlock began. "Thor informed us with his last brief telepathic report that his brother Loki was involved."

Stephen considered. "That might explain why Asgard is..." he paused as his eyes opened wide at a realization. "If the dimensional bonds are weak, the Asgardian creature Surtur might be freed!" he said, alarmed. "He will set the entire universe aflame!"

Warlock frowned, "It doesn't seem like a plan Thanos would follow." Warlock stood up and paced about attempting to brainstorm for ideas that might explain some of the reasons behind all this. "This Dormammu, what role would he play?" Warlock asked the Doctor.

"He is a powerful dimensional creature that feeds off of dimensions and worship," Doctor Strange began. "I am sure he would love for the universe and his dimension to merge so that he could feed off the entire universe instead and expand his power further."

Warlock snapped his fingers as though a revelation had occurred. "Of course," he said. "We have multiple players here," Warlock said with a hint of a smile on his face, "and I believe it is a perfect time for us to go on the offensive. Contact Thor and the Surfer," he quickly told Strange. "If I am correct, they are wasting their time trying to save Asgard. We have played right into the Grandmaster's hands."

As Doctor Strange finished sending a mental recall message to Thor and the Surfer, the three heroes began to discuss Warlock's plan.


Part Four - The Legion's Blood Feast (Asterisk)

From the realm of Everinneye, outside the known multiverse, sat Mephisto, his blood red skin seethed with pure evil, the whites of his eyes dismissed all good. He need not look into a viewscreen or mystical orb to see in distant realms, for he truly was ever-present. He looked through the eyes of his lowly demon Azagthoth, who stood in his place as he had many times before this. Mephisto turned to the darkness where a legion of forms started forward from the depths of the obsidian shadows that lurked in every corner of this realm. Out from the depths emerge the forms of the demons D'Spayre, Hate, the Dweller in the Darkness, Dusk, Satannish, Satan, Necromancy, Spite, Thog, Denak, Anu, Azathoth, Beelzaboul, Scarecrow, and hosts of others stretching far into the depths of this realm seemingly into eternity. In reality, there were six hundred and sixty six forms embodying every aspect of negativity imaginable, every single dark corner of emotion. That which dwells in all things that live, that which dwells in all things that do not.

Mephisto addressed the crowd, and even though it seemed as if it were a conversation as humans have, in reality it took place on a level unimaginable to most minds, "As you know my brethren, my lowly mitochondria worm Azagthoth was given my form. When his task is done, we shall tear.. his… soul… apart, and feast on his ichor for eternity." Mephisto's left upper lip curled up, as his mouth grimaced open, his gums spewing forth a thick red viscous fluid that seemed to be a type of blood. Mephisto continued. "As you are well aware, the Union of dimensions is at hand. Most abstract entities have had the sentience sucked out of them, and only a few remain, those parasites that cling to physical entities to survive. We too are abstract entities, but we also exist in all beings. We feed from them, but we give them our juices as well. We bring them our being, and they succor on our gifts as babies to a mother's teat. They need us to survive too; it is a dark symbiosis."

The being known as D'Spayre melded from the shadows into the red. "The physicals fight amongst themselves: the Eternal seething slug Thanos; the Elder gamesman known as the Grandmaster; the assembled champions of the universe of Marvels; those dual aspects of the so-called Warlock, the Goddess, and Magus; and this reality's current manifestation of Galactus. There shall be repercussions when the Living Tribunal feels there is need to intervene, but his actions have no bearing on us, as we are nature, and we play our roles."

Necromancy, the embodiment of the selfsame magic continued. "When the physicals have disemboweled each other, we shall emerge and feast on their souls! Then we shall take control of the Union of dimensions, remaking it in our image. Then we will be as one again, we will again be Lucifer. Then we will rule all, we will be all. Pain and suffering, torment and fear, hate and evil, death and destruction, will be all that is. The souls and minds of men will be beyond begging for release. Not one soul, not one being, not one thing knows of our plan, nor will they know. We who existed before existence, shall once again be the fallen one, and all will dread." The realm of blood and shadows quaked with the dark rapture of its inhabitants. Mephisto observed the cacophony in silence, seething in his own ambitions.

CONTINUED IN COSMIC UNION #9


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