Blue Light Productions presents

Limp-Asparagus Lad #6     If this is the final issue of the story, then we 
  must be due for a fight scene.
By Saxon Brenton 
Editing by The Mystic Mongoose

Continuity note: This occurs after the Crysys of Ynfynyte Tyms in Dvandom
  Force #42.
Cover: Along the top is the blurb: 'King-sized final issue'. The scene 
is of a triumphant looking Exclamation!Master! laughing fiendishly, with 
manacled Legionnaires looking on with various expressions of frustration 
and outrage.

  "Hold, villain!" proclaimed Kid Not Appearing In Any Retcon Hour Story. 
"Whatever your foul scheme, the Legion of Net.Heroes shall put an end to 
  Exclamation!Master! laughed maniacally, seemingly indifferent to the 
threat. In fact, he seemed to revel in it.
  "You won't get away with this!" added Irony Man.
  "The Legion of Net.Heroes _will_ put a stop you!" announced KNAIARHS.
  "Good will triumph!" exclaimed Fourth Wall Lass, wondering all the 
while how they had appeared in an episode of 'Mighty Morphin Power 
Rangers' that they should just stand around making threats without actually 
_doing_ anything.
  "No heroes, Good will not triumph, for I am... Exclamation!Master! You 
cannot stand against me!
  "Wrong villain, you can, and will be stopped!" KNAIARHS countered.
  "We will not allow your evil to continue," asserted Irony Man.
  etc., etc., etc.
  And while the heroes were engaged in pointless, if dramatic, 
proclamations with Exclamation!Master!, his hired goons(tm) began 
approaching the net.heroes with what were obviously power inhibitors and 
restraints. The heroes could see them, but were powerless to act. 
E!Master!'s insidious compulsion to stand about making pronouncements 
was too powerful.
  "Not so long as breath remains in our bodies will we fail to oppose your 
mad schemes!"
  "Too many lives rest upon our efforts to risk failure!"
  etc., etc., etc.
  Limp-Asparagus Lad pondered. He'd balked E!M! before, but this time the 
villain was obviously prepared. Perhaps he had even found a way to boost 
his powers. The Man of Dull found that he couldn't block E!M!'s power, at 
least not totally, although he might be capable of freeing one of the 
legionnaires. FW Lass was closest. He concentrated on her to the 
exclusion of everyone else in the room, but nothing he did seemed to make 
a difference.
  Thinking hastily, L-A Lad came to a decision. He would have to go with 
the flow of E!M!'s drama field. It wasn't that he _couldn't_ indulge in 
absurd comic book cliches of melodrama, just that he preferred not to. But 
he had to admit that used properly comic book cliches could be useful 
tools rather than just constraints of stylisation, and it would be remiss 
of him not to use a tool purely because of personal preference if the 
situation demanded it.
  Limp-Asparagus Lad let the force of E!M!'s drama inducement wash over 
him, then thought,  .o(I must unleash the focused totality of my drama 
dampening field), feeling - perhaps - just a little bit silly as he did so.
  He directed his power at FW Lass, and - paradoxically reinforced by 
E!M!'s own ability - it swept out to encompass the net.heroine. She paused 
in mid exclamation, realised she was free, and stepped back across the 
threshold of the fourth wall even as the hired goons(tm) were about to 
place the restraints upon her.
  Exclamation!Master! did not seem particularly upset. In fact, he seemed 
almost pleased. "So! She has escaped!" he proclaimed loudly." No doubt 
to try to foil my nefarious machinations! But whether she attempts a rescue 
herself, or brings back reinforcements, it will merely act to extend the 
confrontation! Which means, more exclamations! Mwhahahahaha!"
  As the captured heroes were placed in manacles against one wall of the 
huge room, Irony Man said, "I suppose you're going to exposit what your 
fiendish plan actually is?"
  "But of course! Although I shall also have to explain how I returned from 
my death in issue 3! What would you prefer me to rant to you first?"
  "Your return from the dead will do fine, thank you," replied L-A Lad 
  "Very well! After my ignominious demise in the foyer of your 
headquarters, my corpse was stolen from the LNHQ Medi-lab by operatives 
of W.I.R.E.D.! You recall, Limp-Asparagus Lad, that W.I.R.E.D. wanted 
us both as pawns for the duality of drama our combined powers 
represented! With the advanced technology at their disposal they cloned 
this new body of mine! But your victory over them prompted the Authority 
on Absurd Acronyms to foreclose on the arrangement that they had entered 
into with it! This left me newly awakened in the now deserted W.I.R.E.D. 
base, even as you and your companions returned to make your report and 
send people to secure the building. Using the resources left after 
W.I.R.E.D.'s downfall, I absconded to this location, where W.I.R.E.D. had 
set up a contingency headquarters, as is appropriate for world-girding 
  "And then you set about mastering the secrets of the technology?" Irony 
Man said.
  Exclamation!Master! shrugged. "I'm still working on it," he admitted in 
his normal voice. "But I've worked out quite a bit of stuff. After all, 
it's almost expected for supervillains to be the masters of advanced 
technology. For example, the ways you're being restrained; Irony man has 
had control of his armour shut down with an electromagnetic scrambler. 
Limp-Asparagus Lad can't use his drama dampening field thanks to this handy 
dandy psi inhibitor. And Kid Not Appearing In Any Retcon Hour Story... ah, 
I have something special holding him." E!M! reached from a metal box, which 
he opened to reveal a weirdly glowing chunk of green rock.. Kid stared at 
the rock in horror, his face turning pale.
  "I'm using small, precise amounts of radiation from this little rock to 
keep him weakened," grinned E!M! "I'm quite proud of it."
  "What is it?" asked Irony Man.
  "It is a piece of Retcon Hour story," croaked Kid Not Appearing In Any 
Retcon Hour Story. The others paused in befuddlement at this, and then 
L-A Lad spoke. "I don't understand."
  "It's quite simple!" expounded E!M!, dropping once again into his 
pontification mode. "During the dying days of Retcon Hour, the very fabric 
of Looniversal continuity was stretched beyond endurance! Pieces of the 
severely warped storyline became radioactive under the pressure from so 
many divergent timelines coexisting at once! Then, when wReamicus Maximus 
destroyed the Looniverse in Retcon Hour Omega, some of these radioactive 
pieces of Retcon Hour story were cast out into interdimensional space by 
the cataclysmic forces unleashed by destruction of the doomed continuity! 
Some of these pieces were captured by the gravity of the Looniverse when it 
was recreated, causing them to re-enter our dimension! Their radiations may 
be harmless to normal humans and superhumans, but to Kid Not Appearing In 
Any Retcon Hour Story they are deadly!"
  "Are you sure they're harmless to everybody else? That they're not going 
to give you long term radiation poisoning, or something?" pressed Irony Man.
  Exclamation!Master! glared at him.
  "Well. This _is_ the post-Cry.Sig Looniverse. If it's that close a 
parallel to Kryptonite, then surely it mirrors Kryptonite's post-Crisis 
  "I know for a fact that these pieces of Retcon Hour story mirror the 
attributes of pre-Crisis Kryptonite!" the villain exclaimed. "Since I also 
have... this!" he cried, whipping out a similarly glowing crimson rock.
  "And what's that?"
  "Red Retcon Hour story," gasped KNAIARHS. "The type that causes a 
temporary but unpredictable change for between 24 to 48 hours, each sample 
provoking a specific reaction but fortunately only affecting me but once."
  "Are you all right Kid?" asked Irony Man, concerned at how his voice 
sounded. "Kid?"
  But it was too late. Kid Not Appearing In Any Retcon Hour Story had 
already fallen prey to the sinister radiation of the red Retcon Hour story, 
and had frozen into immobility, transformed into a solid granite statue.
  The constrained net.heroes stared at the petrified form of KNAIARHS in 
horror. (Well, Irony Man stared in horror. Limp-Asparagus Lad watched with 
a barely perceptible look of concern.) E!Master! cackled with fiendish 
laughter. "Thus fall all who attempt to oppose me! But to continue...
  "My diabolical plan is to destroy Net.ropolis! After having done so (or at 
least, attempted to do so) I will have established my reputation as an evil 
master villain, thus earning recognition and the opportunity for more 
appearances in LNH comics!"
  "I'm afraid I don't see the point," said L-A Lad. "You're being a villain 
for the sake of being a villain? That doesn't seem like much of a 
  "I see that you're completely missing the point," E!M! told him coldly in 
a voice that had nothing to do melodramatic pontifications, but a whole lot 
to do with disgust. "You're an idiot. This whole universe was put 
together out of comic book cliches. And you really thought you could make 
a difference? You thought you could actually _help_ villains? By _not_ 
engaging in the gratuitous fight scenes that sell comics? That's how we get 
exposure, twit! The more we grab the reader's attention, the more they 
think about us, the more real we become! You want us to become some sort of 
Kurt Swan-style Kryptonian utopia, where everyone's _nice_? Moron! The 
readers'll loose interest that way! You want us to become like the Occult 
Heroes' universe? Falling apart because there'll be no-one left to write or 
read about us! Because no-one'll _want_ to write or read about us! You 
wanted to _help_ villains? By helping them _reform_, so that they become 
boring old background characters who slip into obscurity and eventually 
comic book Limbo?
  "I'm more alive now than that at any time in the past 35 years. Living 
_means_ something now! Even if that something is hackneyed supervillain 
cliches and being trounced by heroes at the end of every adventure! I will 
_not_ go back to what I was, under _any_ circumstances. I _will_ scheme 
grandiose plans of world domination, and I _will_ match wits with the 
likes of your companions," he jabbed his thumb towards L-A Lad's impotent 
fellow net.heroes. "And I will enjoy it. And though they may not admit it, 
they will too. That's the point of having superpowers in this universe!"
  Exclamation!Master! paused for breath, then continued in a quiet voice 
that almost seemed sane, until you saw the hatred in his eyes. "But you're 
not going to be around for it. I'm going to kill you. You don't enjoy being 
a superhero anyway, not properly. You don't relish the conflict of Good 
versus Evil. You just go through the motions, so I may as well bump you off. 
And not in some ridiculous camp death trap that you can escape from, either. 
Nor am I even going to use some Image-style 'realism', because for all their 
so-called hard-edged toughness, their phallic BigGuns(tm) and fights, 
they're just as much an adolescent power fantasy as any other type of 
superhero. The Image heroes survive, despite the ridiculous odds they face, 
which no matter what they say is not realism."
  He motioned the guards forward. They unshackled L-A Lad and escorted him 
to another side of the room, where they threw him down against a wall and 
floor of strongstuffium. E!M! rummaged around among some materials, and 
brought out a bazooka. He briefly quirked one side of his mouth into a 
sardonic grin. "Way over your threshold, right?"
  Limp-Asparagus Lad's eyes focused on the bazooka. And then 
Exclamation!Master! fired.
  When the smoke cleared L-A Lad looked something like hamburger mince, 
but he was still alive, simply because dead men don't continue to bleed.
  Exclamation!Master! glanced at the body, noted it was still alive, and 
said almost disinterestedly, "Take him out, chop him up with an axe or 
something, and throw the bits in the furnace."
  "You will pay for that, monster!" vowed Irony Man.
  Exclamation!Master! turned to the remaining net.hero, as if he had 
momentarily forgotten him. "Sorry about that. Business before pleasure. 
But I'm sure we'll all be better off for it. He was just going to ruin it 
for the rest of us. Now then... So you claim, Irony Man! But I do not fear 
retribution from you!" he announced with renewed grandiose pomposity.
  Irony Man bridled in anger. Now that he'd removed Limpy, E!Master! had 
reverted back to treating this all as some sort of big game. But despite 
Herculean efforts to do otherwise he only compounded the cliche by adding, 
"No matter what it takes, your villainy will be brought to an end!"
  Exclamation!Master! threw back his head and roared with laughter.

  The hired goons(tm) dragged Limp-Asparagus Lad out to the furnace room, 
where one of them produced an axe from a tool chest. Fortunately for Limp-
Asparagus Lad, being barely conscious and incapable of focusing his drama 
dampening field, there was nothing to prevent the plot from slipping into 
its normal, Looniversal, comic book-style dramatic pacing.
  Thus, it was only just as the hired goon(tm) was bringing the axe down 
that Fourth Wall Lass attacked, emerging through the fourth wall to kick 
him squarely in the gut with a blow that sent him to the floor and the axe 
skidding harmlessly away across the floor.
  The other two, trained professional goons(tm), attacked as well, but she 
was already gone, having made only a step back across the threshold of the 
fourth wall needed to disappear from their view. On the other side of the 
threshold she took but a fraction of a second to reorient her panel. In a 
comic book the fourth wall had no set location or orientation, but instead 
changed between angles and distances as required by the needs of the story 
and the whim of the artist. And unless balked by the whims of plot 
contrivance, she was an expert at using and arranging her own personal panel 
between the Looniverse and the intermediate zone that gave access to the 
real world beyond. 
  Then she was behind the second hired goon(tm), emerging across the 
threshold to strike him to the floor and into unconsciousness. She didn't 
even bother the duck back across the threshold, having placed herself so 
that she could the swing and take out her final opponent.
  "Fourth Wall Lass... " Limp-Asparagus Lad managed to say weakly. Fourth 
Wall Lass was surprised that L-A Lad was still conscious, but quickly 
recognised that he was too weak to protect himself from dramatic plot 
development with his drama dampening filed. She knelt beside him, and said, 
"Don't talk, I'll get you back to the infirmary."
  Limp-Asparagus Lad seemed to be gaining strength, despite his horrific 
injuries. "No. Go and get reinforcements."
  "I can get help once I've got you to the infirmary," she reiterated 
firmly.  .o(Funny. I'd always thought Limpy was too sensible for this sort 
of macho nonsense.) Then, to her amazement, he managed to climb to his feet. 
.o(Oh God,) she thought (If he can do that, then there must be a plot reason 
for him to be able to do so.) And she silently cursed as she realised what 
it must be.
  "No. I've got to stall him for you," L-A Lad said, blood trickling from 
his mouth.
  "You're too weak to fight him."
  "Not fight; stall. Confuse him with his own repertoire."
  "Okay, okay. It's bloody stupid, but if that's the way we've got to 
handle this sh*t of a plot... What reinforcements do you want?"
  Limp-Asparagus Lad shook his head, as if trying to clear his head to 
think. "Anyone who's immune to his exclamations. Super Apathy Lad maybe. 
Or someone who's not from the Looniverse."
  "Gotcha. Look, Limpy, this sucks, but I'm not going to argue with absurd 
plot contrivance, because that's obviously the only thing that's keeping you 
alive at the moment, having to go and confront E!Master! But at least let me 
drop you off outside the room so you don't waste what strength you have.
  "Thank you. That would be a great help."
  "I bet Irony Man's gonna love this," she muttered as she helped him across 
the fourth wall. "The man who's against comic book drama using it to 
defeat the guy who practically embodies it."

  In the control room Irony Man felt the build up of irony, but manacled as 
he was he was in no position to try to identify its source. A few seconds 
later he didn't need to.
  Exclamation!Master! had been toying with his captive, and despite his 
best efforts Irony Man was helpless to do anything than shout trite 
superhero dogma at him. But E!M! seemed to have nearly had his fill of this 
particular game, and now moved towards the control panel. "And now, my dear 
opponent, it is time to extend my little party to the rest of Net.ropolis."
  "You shall not get away this!" Irony Man declared.
  "And who will stop me!?" E!M! smirked.
  "I will," Limp-Asparagus Lad said, leaning against the frame of the door. 
It was a full page panel, reminiscent in execution of the typical scene in 
any story where the hero, thought dead, crawls back, bruised and bloodied 
for a final confrontation with the villain. A confrontation that, simply 
because he's the hero, the readers _know_ he'll win. After an appropriate 
fight scene for the fanboys, of course.
  Irony Man was shocked, since it was quite definitely not L-A Lad's style 
to rip-off that sort of conclusion to a story. His irony detectors shrilled 
  "You," spat Exclamation!Master! with distaste. "Don't tell me you've got 
the hypocrisy to try and save the day with the very plot elements you 
  Leaning against door, panting with exertion, Limp-Asparagus Lad replied, 
"Very well," and said no more.
  Exclamation!Master! wrinkled his nose in disgust. "I should be pleased, 
you know. That someone as ridiculously principled as yourself should give 
up everything you believe in, just so you can win. But somehow, I just can't 
be bothered." He walked over and punched L-A Lad in the stomach, causing 
him to collapse to his knees. "Why couldn't you just stay dead?"
  "I haven't died yet," L-A Lad said simply.
  "Yeah, well. I suppose that means you can honestly say you haven't sold 
out to be one of the heroes with a sales-driven resurrection," admitted E!M! 
thoughtfully. "I'll give you that much." Then he kicked him in the head.
  Exclamation!Master! turned from the fallen hero and walked back to the 
console. "I don't believe this crap," he muttered. "If I'm going to be 
defeated they should at least have the decency to send somebody with style." 
He reached the console. "But enough of this foolery!" he exclaimed, 
reassuming his grandiose pontifications voice. "The city lies ready for 
destruction, ready to taken like a ripe apple plucked from a tree!"
  "You cannot destroy the fair city of Net.ropolis!" said Limp-Asparagus 
Lad weakly. Exclamation!Master! turned to see that he had risen to his feet 
again with the aid on a table to lean on. L-A Lad looked at the villain, and 
said in a voice more like that of an actor reciting lines for the first time 
than someone who truly felt and believed in them, "For though it needs take 
my very lifeblood, I will oppose you to my last breath! You will not 
succeed villain! For I am Limp-Asparagus Lad!"
  Exclamation!Master! looked at him as one would a rabid butterfly. "Don't 
be ridiculous," he said. "You don't believe any of that. Do you really think 
you can tie me up in an exposition duel the way I did them?" He waved his 
hand in the direction of the captive Irony Man and the petrified Kid 
  "You will not succeed Exclamation!Master!" L-A Lad continued, as if by 
rote. "Justice will inevitably triumph over your madness! It matters not 
that I may fall! I am of the legion, and we are many!"
  "You got that in one," said someone behind Exclamation!Master! He 
whirled to see Fourth Wall Lass and a woman his researches told him was 
Kopikat of Dvandom Force, who was advancing towards him.
  "Foolish hero! You cannot thwart me!" Exclamation!Master! exclaimed 
reflexively, planning to do to her what he had to his other prisoners.
  "Oh, give it a rest!" she replied testily as she morphed into her eight 
meter tall mecha form, grabbed him in one hand, and knocked him unconscious 
with a flick of a finger.
  With the villain defeated the plot had no further use for L-A Lad, and the 
dramatic need to keep him going deserted him. He collapsed.
  It was not a heroic collapse. Limp-Asparagus Lad did not mercifully 
loose consciousness and fall to the ground, confident that because of his 
actions his fellow net.heroes were saved. Rather, he fell to his knees as 
the pain became too much, heaved with nausea, and then lost consciousness, 
falling in his own vomit.

  Much later, Limp-Asparagus Lad woke in the LNHQ's infirmary. He lay for 
a moment, getting his bearings. He hurt all over, and wondered for a moment 
if living was worth it. Then it occurred to him that he was running 
perilously close engaging in angst and being out of character. 
  How are you feeling?
  Limp-Asparagus Lad turned his head up towards the sound of the writer's... 
voice? narration? and replied, "I believe I'll survive. It seems to be one 
of the conditions of being a net.hero to survive such wounds."
  Mmm. Yeah. Still, you were pretty badly banged up.
  "Yes. Climactic final story I should imagine. I guess I can't escape 
certain comic book conventions."
   I'm afraid the big final fight scene was almost obligatory, even though 
I did try to make it more of an ideological confrontation.
  Limp-Asparagus Lad nodded. "That gave Exclamation!Master! the chance to 
present his views, at least."
  Pretty convincing views, I should think. A pointed comment on the nature 
of superhero/supervillain activities. I was quite proud of the comparison.
  "Perhaps as they stand," L-A Lad conceded. "That doesn't mean they have 
to remain valid, though."
  You've lost me.
  "Exclamation!Master! is right about the Looniverse being based on 
superhero cliches, but he was overlooking that it could grow to transcend 
the limitations of its origins. That point was made back in Constellation 
  Crikey, that's going back a-ways.
  "Yes. Anyway, Sig.Lad made the point that when it was first created this 
world wasn't intended to be stable, or even internally coherent, but that 
since then people have been working to stabilise it; to make it more than 
just the parody it began as. That's important, I think.
  "Maybe I was overzealous in trying to turn Bob from the path of 
Exclamation!Master! And his death and subsequent relapse is a 
responsibility I'll have to bear. But just because background characters 
and non-superhumans get the short shift now doesn't mean it will always 
have to be that way."
  You feel guilty over what happened to Bob? 
  Limp-Asparagus Lad thought the writer sounded a little surprised. "Not 
guilty. Responsible. Guilt runs to close to angst, and you of all people 
should know I can't do that.
  Uhmm. Yeah. Funny that. I was wondering how to get around that problem. 
There was a nice line in one of the 'Earth Stories' in Scott McCloud's Zot: 
'If you make a mistake and learn something from it, it's not a mistake'. I 
was planning on using that with you, kinda as an alternative to not 
angsting, but I never got around to integrating it into you character.
  The writer sighed. L-A Lad turned his gaze to the new point where the 
voice was coming from; which was from the man now sitting on the end of his 
bed. "I guess you're way ahead of me there, Limpy. You've become a much more 
realised character than even I envisioned you being, you know that?"
  Limp-Asparagus Lad examined his writer. He seemed to be an uninteresting 
man of medium height in his mid twenties, slightly overweight, with short 
dark brown curly hair and eyes of a washed-out green colour. He was 
wearing a light shirt, shorts, and thongs. 
  "Aren't you cold?" L-A Lad asked.
  "It's summer where I am, remember? It's a pity you've been unconscious 
for the past few days; you've missed Writers Block Woman (and Mouse) #9. 
You'll have to go and read it. Jaelle made a particularly good description 
of Christmas in summer."
  "I'll make a point of it."
  "Mm-hmm. Anyway, this is the also almost obligatory 'character meets the 
writer' scene. And the bit where I say good-bye, although hopefully just 
for the time being."
  "I've finished university, which means I'll have to try to get net access 
elsewhere. I want to try to get back, because I've got lots more stories to 
write about you, but I can't guarantee anything."
  "It was nice while it lasted, anyway," L-A Lad. "For a long time I was 
concerned that I'd never get another appearance, let alone a writer."
  His writer grinned. "You'd be surprised how many people commented on 
not expecting anyone to ever write you. Still, the comments in the U-Force 
annual about your cooking duties were planned before I came along, and 
as an example in the LNH FAQ you were better placed to hold off against 
the risk of slipping into total obscurity in comic book Limbo than many 
other characters."
  "But it's always nice to make appearances; to be seen," he countered 
  "That's true." His writer cocked his head to one side, looking thoughtful. 
"There might be something else though."
  "I think I should leave you with a little something more, though I'm not 
sure how to go about it. It's Christmas after all." For a second his 
attention seemed to wander, and he smiled as if listening to something. 
"I'm afraid the others have started partying without you from the sounds of 
the singing and the snowball fight."
  "I can't hear anything. One shouldn't be able to, anyway. Not from the 
  "Sorry. Forgot that you can't hear that from up here. Wait a sec while I 
fix the acoustics for you." For a moment he had a distracted look in his 
eyes, then said, "There." The distant sounds of legionnaires celebrating 
drifted up from downstairs [See Writers Block Woman (and Mouse) #10 - SB]. 
"You know, I'm not sure if I won't be making problems for Russ' timeline 
by dating this scene so explicitly."
  "If there's a problem, you can always say this was just a dream sequence," 
pointed out L-A Lad, absolutely straight faced.
  "Yeah, well. Maybe. No! What I'm here for can't be handled in a dream 
sequence. At least, I don't think so. Trust me Limpy, you are _not_ 
  "So what is it you're here for?"
  "Ah, well. Perhaps I'd better explain. When I took you over as my Writer 
Character, I gave you a distinct personality, appearance, real name..."
  "Real first name," L-A Lad corrected. "I still don't have a surname."
  The writer blinked. "You don't?" He looked somewhat bamboozled. "Now 
how could I forget something like that? Hold up a second." He paused in 
thought. "Asimov. After Isaac. How's that?"
  Limp-Asparagus Lad thought about it. Joshua Asimov. "It's good," he 
  "Glad you like it, although it could've been Roddenberry too. Now, 
anyway, I gave you all that stuff, which before you either didn't have, or 
only had in sketch form. Did you know that one of the things that pleased 
The Mystic Mongoose most about me taking you up was that I'd distilled a 
personality for you that exemplified limp-asparagusness?"
  "Is that a word?"
  "Probably not. Never mind, writers are always taking liberties with 
language. Anyway, he said that he'd been a little rushed at the time, and 
wasn't quite happy with his depiction of you."
  "Your point being?"
  "The point being that I gave an awful lot of stuff to you that's based 
on me. Or parts of me, anyway. Including some of the embarrassing bits," 
he admitted. "But I'm still not sure if that's enough."
  "I don't understand."
  "Okay, let's try it from this point of view. Mostly, when writers use 
other people's characters, it's because they've been loaned to them. And 
their own characters are, well, created from whole cloth from their own 
imagination. Spun out of the fabric of their own being, if you want to use 
a fantasy fiction metaphor. I'm not sure how you're supposed to take on 
another person's character as your WC. Make the link between the character 
and the writer, I mean. I'm not even sure if its been done before; I may 
be setting the precedent."
  "What about Master Blaster?"
  "No. Master Blaster is still Rob Ramirez' WC, for all that he was given 
over to Martin's control virtually from the start.
  "Anyway, what I'm trying to get at is that characters are made from part 
of their writer's being. Swapping them around and loaning them out for 
stories doesn't much affect that link, but I think there's a bit of a 
difference for WCs. You aren't me. I've taken you as a character, and 
shaped you with elements of myself, but you still don't share my identity 
at the most fundamental level, like the way Deja Dude does with Martin," he 
paused for a second. "Although that may be too extreme an example. More 
like Pli does with Mike or Kid Kirby does with Jameel. Anyway, that's what 
I think I should fix." Limp-Asparagus Lad's writer stood up off the bed, 
and reached out his hand. "Here Limpy..." And he paused again. "Here 
_Josh_," he corrected himself, "let me help you up."
  "I thought you said I was badly injured. Organic Lass won't be pleased."
  "Oh, ye have so little faith. Abide by me, my son."
  "Please don't hide behind pseudo-biblical language."
  The writer looked embarrassed. "You're right. It's unfair of me to make 
those sort of jokes to someone who can't appreciate them. I apologise. 
Don't worry about your injuries."
  "What should I call you? Do you have a nickname you would prefer?"
  He grinned. "What, you mean something impressive sounding and 
pretentious? Well, I do call myself The Keeper of the Thresholds of the 
Infinities, but that's only when I act as a FAQ keeper over on I've actually always said that with the real name I've got 
I don't need a nickname. Saxon will do fine," he said, helping the injured 
net.hero out of bed.
  "Very well, Saxon. What do you want me to do?"
  "Just stand there. Now, did you ever read the Legion of Superheroes 
story, where the Dark Circle cloned Dev-em? And then brainwashed the poor 
sods into serving them?" He stepped a pace off to the side, letting Josh 
to stand himself.
  "I think I remember it. That was before the Five Year Gap and the 
Modruverse, and well before the reboot."
  "That's right. Tales of the LSH #s 324 and 325, almost a decade ago. And 
do you remember how the Legion dealt with those pesky clones?" he asked, 
standing facing away from Josh but grinning at him side-on.
  Josh thought. "As I recall, the White Witch cast a spell that merged them 
with their original."
  "Uh-huh. Spell of Reabsorption, it was called." Saxon spread his hands. 
Josh's hands spread themselves in the same movement, as if they weren't 
under his control. "One of the best things about fanfiction is that you can 
pay homage to the stuff that you like. Though in this case it's more along 
the lines of just plain 'absorbtion'."
  Josh realised he had somehow adapted the same stance as Saxon, and 
couldn't move from it. Then they began moving, slipping across the floor, 
converging side-on at each other. They collided, passing into each other.
  "Aaagh!" cried Josh as every nerve felt as though it had been fired up, 
all at once. He found himself panting on the floor.
  How do you feel now? came the voice over of Saxon.
  "Strange. Like I'm tingling all over," Josh said as he picked himself up 
off the floor. "What did you do?"
  I merged us for an instant, and gave you a part of me. A part of my life 
force. It should've healed all your wounds, but that's incidental. _Now_ 
you're me. In all the ways that're relevant for WC/writer relationships, 
  "You did that, for me? I... I guess I should say thank you. I should 
probably say more too..."
  I wouldn't worry about it. I'm not good at handling emotional situations, 
and for rather obvious characterisation reasons you aren't allowed to get 
emotional. But I understand. And thank you. Good-bye Josh. And remember, 
I'll always be with you.

Independent Villain Roster Entry
NAME: Exclamation!Master!
  CREATED BY: (Saxon Brenton)
  POWERS: Drama inducement; people are too busy making dramatic 
  pronouncements to act against him.
  ADD NOTES: After Bob Melwitzcht's powers caused him to be fired, 
  he took up supervillainy, and discovered the benefits of being other 
  than a background character. He's working hard to establish his 
  reputation so he'll be used more in LNH comics.
  STATUS: Alive
  ENEMIES: Limp-Asparagus Lad
  APPEARANCE: Black armour and cape, both with silver highlights.


Limp-Asparagus Lad by Saxon Brenton, created by The Mystic Mongoose 
  and wReam
Exclamation!Master!, Fourth Wall Lass, and the A.A.A. by Saxon Brenton
Irony Man by Public Domain
Kid Not Appearing In Any Retcon Hour Story by Badger
Kopikat and Sig.Lad by Dave Van Domelen
Deja Dude by Martin Phipps
Kid Kirby by Jameel al Khafiz
Legion of Occult Heroes by Paul Hardy
Master Blaster by Rob Rameriz
Organic Lass by Rebecca Drayer
Pliable Lad by Mike Escrutia
Super Apathy Lad by
W.I.R.E.D. by The Mystic Mongoose
wReamicus Maximus by wReam

All characters (c) and (tm) their respective owners and/or creators

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