Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Justice League: A Midsummer's Nightmare #1 (9/96)

Pages were missing from the Book of Destiny. Every super-hero you ever heard of was at best just another comic book character. Across the world in recent weeks, humans had begun to spontaneously develop super-powers. 79,000 of these "Sparkers" resided in the United States alone. The heroes and villains of this new world order were new to the tongue... Onyx... Unity... Vigil... Behemoth... The only thing super about Beatriz DaCosta was her modelling career. Michael Carter was a football booster worth his weight in gold, with Ted Kord a CEO. Kyle Rayner drew comic books. Clark Kent was nothing more than a recently ineffectual newspaper reporter. Bruce Wayne's parents chided him for turning their charitable tax shelter into a philanthropic crusade. Wally West taught grade school, while Diana Prince was headmistress of a boarding school. Most incredulously, Arthur Curry was a fisherman given a position in the Red Tide Tuna Company corporate office to avoid a lawsuit when he lost a hand. Unlike the other former Leaguers, most of his supporting cast was also present... on staff.

Crossing the red sands of Mars, an alien child called out to her parents. "Mother, guess what L'narr taught us at the knowledge ceremony!"
"What, dear? No more talk of the 'Pale Martians' of the Poles, I trust?"
"No! That... that there may be life on other planets!"
"Really? Oh, I don't know about that, dear..."
"Yes! Yes! Do you think that father believes it to be true?"
"Perhaps... but... I'd have to see it to believe it! How are you today, little one?"
"Alien beings, eh?"
"L'narr said--"
"Your father, dear, prides himself on his analytical mind. Sometimes... a little too much."
"I simply prefer to deal in matters of clue and evidence. Besides, it would not matter to me in the least if there were alien life on every world beyond our sphere... just so long as it did not interfere with the life we have here... together."

In a secret underground military lab, the Know Man passed invisibly and intangibly to check on his captive, Doctor Destiny.

When one of her young charges developed rough purple flesh and superhuman strength, Diana Prince used speed and agility she never knew she had to help the girl.

Watching the destruction wrought by gangbanging Sparkers brawling for turf in the streets of Metropolis, Superman was the first to shake off his waking dream. Bruce Wayne soon followed, though he needed the Man of Steel's help to fully reclaim the mantle of the Batman. "If we're going to break the rest of the planet out of this daze, we'll need to gather more firepower."

Continue To #2

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