The first story, “Ego and Heroism”, is another story making fun of superheroes. In a world where supermen are actually grown in a lab, equivalent to cloned humans with shortened lifespans, despite their powers. These beings are used as superweapons, deterrents of international aggression in place of nuclear weapons, and champions of their native countries meant to resolve international conflicts, while preserving human life. But when peace is established on Earth and more threats arrive from beyond our solar system these superhumans become more valuable. However, when the demand for these artificial heroes begins to outpace the supply of quality goods, one doctor decides to take it upon himself to attempt to become the hero the world needs—or die trying—in the most common comic-book way.
“Discord” is a story about a girl who is literally overcome by her personal demon. In an effort to gain the power to protect her family, she makes an unholy deal. When the righteous heart is corrupted by a lust for vengeance and mayhem, the former person dissolves, losing sight of who she wanted to be and wanting to kill everything she used to be. This story sums up what I think a lot of people feel when they compromise themselves for others or even try to do something bad for the sake of good.
“Afraid to be Alone” is a horror story about a man being hunted by a monster that only attacks a person when no one else is around. The story follows the man in his normal routine of trying to keep company around him only to eventually find himself isolated.
“The Town of Rumplestiltskin” is a new take on the old story of the eponymous character. It is more of a legacy story instead of an isolated incident as the original was, following generations of people blessed with good fortune in exchange for one child from their town every year. Of course, I reversed the ending, but in stories where children are taken, I usually prefer a happy ending.
Finally, “Fantastic Detectives” is another story made completely with dialogue, following two detectives with names that oddly resemble a famous detective from literature and his doctor-sidekick. There isn’t a deeper meaning to this story, other than reimagining this detective in a fantasy world and playing with funny dialogue.
That covers it for this go-around. Five more down, and plenty more to go. I didn’t expect to finish these features until June, so I will continue to crank these out by the twos and fives as necessary. Be sure to check back, because (obviously) there is more to come! And go on and buy, rate, and recommend Freaky and Fantastical 500 Words or Less if you haven’t already!