Pinholes: Traveling through the Curtain of the Night (episode #51)

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Synopsis:

The brilliant scientist, Portage McPeeve, does not want to take over the world.

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He’s discovered a way to travel the stars, using them as gateways into other realities. With his Gateway Manipulator, he hopes to rule all the worlds of the multi-verse with an iron fist. However, when his beloved kitten becomes lost through the machine, he does not hesitate to cast plans for multi-world domination aside; instead, he follows her through the cosmos – encountering zombies, higher education for Supers, Greek gods, and killer ninjas along the way.

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Will Portage find Mrs. Bumblefrost before it’s too late?

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Episode #51

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“What in my name is this about?” asked Hades, holding the small device at arm’s length for the guard’s inspection. A silver rectangle protruded from the back of a plastic clown’s face, and a post-it note stuck to its tongue read “Attention: Hades.”

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“It’s a USB drive, my lord,” said the guard, keeping his eyes averted and kneeling before the god of the Underworld. His red Roman cape gave an impressive flourish.

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“I know it’s a USB drive, nincompoop,” said Hades. “But why did you give me this?”

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“It just appeared, sir,” said the guard, “as I stood at the entrance to your palace.”

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“Hmmmmm,” said Hades. One of my watchmen must have sent it, he thought. No need for others to know the methods by which I keep tabs on other worlds. “Thank you, soldier. Dismissed.” Hades stroked his chin, musing on the wisdom of knowing too much.

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With another impressive flourish, the guard removed himself from the throne room.

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Hades contemplated the clown’s face, the silver device exiting the back of its head like some grotesque wound. He liked the style. He’d never been fond of clowns.

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Snapping his fingers, a laptop appeared in the air before him. He plugged the clown USB into the laptop, hit the appropriate keys, and watched the screen.

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A woman with two long blond ponytails and wearing a sour disposition – along with a pair of black-rim glasses – appeared on the screen before him. From somewhere offscreen, a man said, “Is this thing on yet? What if he-”

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The woman gestured irritably offscreen. Hades couldn’t see her hand gestures; his imagination filled in rude details when the voice suddenly quieted. The woman spoke. “Hades, this is-”

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“Be sure to address him as Lord of the Underworld,” said the offscreen voice in hushed tones. “Be very respectful and polite, because-”

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The woman shot a sideways look that the camera only partly caught, but again – rude. Again, the voice quieted. “Lord Hades,” began the woman, “Ruler of the Underworld, great leader and-” she cleared her throat, clearly uncomfortable, “Great leader and powerful god of the departed, I am Doctor Snap Decision, former employee of Doctor Portage McPeeve-”

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Ah, a minion, thought Hades. He was all too familiar with minions. Usually incompetent, unable to accomplish their own nefarious ambitions, they rode on the evil coattails of their villainous employers. However, he listened to Ms. Decision explain the situation. She seemed especially annoyed that the whole thing began over a lost kitten, and he became gradually more impressed. First, that she was able to control her irritation to the degree she had, although to a god it was patently obvious. Second, that she was able to articulate herself and her thought processes so logically, though this plea for help was obviously a last resort. Clearly, the woman of science was desperate if she was asking the god of the Underworld for help.

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He liked her.

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“And so,” she said. “You can see our situation, Lord Hades, is dire. Not just for ourselves, but for yourself as well. If the entire multi-verse is contaminated by this zombie-virus, then who will come to your kingdom? And if all the multi-verse succumbs to the virus and does eventually make it to the land of the dead – perhaps through decomposition of the brain? – there will be no one else to populate those worlds, no more souls brought into existence to eventually die.” The woman paused to adjust her glasses before continuing. “In other words, this virus has the very real potential to limit the quantity of those you rule.”

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He paused the recording.

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Of course, this wasn’t his first apocalypse, and he hoped it wouldn’t be his last. Then again, if it was, at least he wanted to go out in a blaze of glory – like those damned Asgardians always bragged about. The scale of this particular apocalypse did… well, there was no point worrying about it. He was a god of action. But he liked the woman’s logic, which made perfect sense given her limited knowledge. He noticed that where he had paused the recording, the shadow of a caped figure was advancing on the woman. He imagined it was the cameraman. He hit ‘play.’

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The screen wobbled as, Hades assumed, the cameraman put the camera down and struggled to set it at an appropriate angle to catch the woman and himself. A ridiculously attired man appeared onscreen and nudged the clearly annoyed scientist to the side. He struck a pose before the camera, which cut him off just below his head but managed to capture his overalls, part of his toolbelt, and the edges of this cape. “Hello, your Lordship,” said the man. “My name is Hephaestus, defender of the defenceless, fight of the- oof!” And elbow nudged the hero in the stomach. He continued, slightly bent so his jaw was visible. “Obviously, I took this name in honor of the god of the forge, but I am a great admirer of yours as well. I just wanted to say,” he waved at the camera, “you know, I’m a fan.” Another elbow.

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Offscreen: “I’m not going to have time to edit this out later, you know.”

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The hero turned to his left: “What do you mean ‘edit out?’ I’m being respectful.”

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“You’re being ridiculous.”

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“I’m not being-” The screen shook, and then the video recording ended.

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Hades chuckled to himself. His dearest Queen, Persephone, had gone to tend her black roses in the castle garden. Only someone with a green thumb like hers could make something that beautiful grow in this land of eternal darkness. He admired her skills. Heck, he admired any independent and powerful woman. Still, mortals petitioning him – of all the gods – for help?

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And that supposedly ‘super’ hero’s alias? What kind of idiot would name himself after the lame and ugly god of the forge? Possibly someone who valued cleverness over appearance, he mused, and judging by the man’s outfit, that was probably true.

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He considered.

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Cerberus could, of course, track the dying man to his current location. With three heads and three noses, it would be remarkable if he could not – even though the man had traveled the multi-verse. However, since his employee was already monitoring the situation-

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One of the rubies on the throne began pulsing with light. An alert from the Ghost Realm was coming in. The undead leaking into other worlds and now this? Hades made an impatient gesture and drew a crystal ball from the air. With furrowed brow, he listened to his watchman in the Ghost Realm with growing concern.

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**All episodes listed here.

**Look for the next exciting installment of Pinholes next Tuesday, same cat-time, same cat-channel… uh, blog. I mean, blog.

 

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3 Comments

Filed under humor, mythology, Pinholes: Traveling through the Curtain of the Night, satire, Serials/Series, Super Villians/Mad Scientists, SuperHeroes

3 Responses to Pinholes: Traveling through the Curtain of the Night (episode #51)

  1. Oh will he help them I wonder? Snap was very brave to approach him I goes she made a snap decision! LOL

  2. Damn auto correct – I’m going to shoot it, yes I am —- goes should read guess

  3. I always love the juxtaposition of modern technology and traditional pantheons in these stories!

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