Tales of Heroics and Villainry, Volume 5!

September 5, 2007

“What just happened?” asked the Wraith, as the Dark Chonologist’s machine slowly powered down.

There had been what seemed like a sudden burst of light, though the Wraith wasn’t sure if that was truly what had happened, or merely the only way his mind could process it. He had felt something momentarily shift… but already it was fading from thought and memory.

“Um, aheh, yes… the device, well, has not yet been fine-tuned. I tried to… tried to warn you, didn’t I?” Beads of sweat were dripping down Theodore’s face, and his voice was strained and thin. “Perfectly harmless, but… ahh, the machine just sent us into the future.”

The Wraith snarled – and you must understand, when one is a being formed of vapor and will alone, one can wear a profoundly frightening expression indeed. A smoky hand wrapped around Theadore’s neck and lifted him into the air. “How much time have we lost?”

Eyes nervously glancing at the readings on the machine, Theodore responded, “Not… not long. No more than a week… a week and a half! And, in a sense, no time at all!”

“What? Explain yourself, Tempus!”

“As I said, the device… isn’t focused, yet. It didn’t just send us into the future… it sent everyone. Everything! There might be some slight… temporal inconsistencies, perhaps, but for all intents and purposes, activating the machine did absolutely nothing at all!”

The Wraith paused, his expression becoming entirely unreadable. After a few moments, Theodore began to relax, and waited for his employer to set him down and, perhaps, even discuss the possibility of some additional funding.

Then he felt the smoke beginning to drift into his lungs, and his eyes grew wide. He thrashed about, clutching for a weapon, a loose cable, any sort of salvation – but the Wraith’s hand held him immobilized in the air, even as it spawned waves of black smoke that cut off his breathing.

Eventually, his struggles ceased, and his body grew still. The Wraith dropped him to the ground with a disdainful grimace. “A useless end for a useless man. I had hoped to have some good news this quarter, for a change.” Shaking his head, he billowed away out of the lab and into the night.

And in his haste, he didn’t notice the subtle glow shining under the skin of the apple left atop the Dark Chronologist’s device. The Wraith hadn’t thought to ask the important question – when the machine stole nine days from every person on Earth, every star in the sky, every atom in the universe… where did all that time go?

Add it all up, and then condense all that time into a single moment of infinity – and you have more than time enough for a simple apple to become something far, far more.

Sentient, possessing massive psychic powers, and now with a handy lair whose previous owner had no need of it, the Omega Apple floated into the air, and began its plans for world domination.

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