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Lor Time Mark 1898.6 (July 30, 2019 Terran Calendar)


A pair of figures walked down a long marble hallway. Great pillars held up a vast, vaulted ceiling as light from some unknown source gleamed off the gilded sections of the ceiling and the smooth marble. One of the figures was tall and thin, dressed in a yellow robe and hood, a golden mask covering its face. The other was short, no more than four feet tall, with a stout body and dark red skin. It had a bald head and wide face.


Along the hallway the two figures passed several alcoves, each containing a hologram image sometimes depicting individual beings, other times a small group of beings. "See all the great champions of contests past Kanto?" The tall hooded figure asked as the pair passed some of the alcoves and their holograms. The smaller figured nodded its bald head, a grin on its wide face. 


"It has been far too long since I have had any truly entertaining contestants for any games." The taller figure continued, a note of disappointment in its voice. The figure came to a halt in front of one of the alcoves. The hologram contained within was of a single muscular human, wearing blue tights over which were a golden breastplate, matching forearm guard and knee-high boots. A long white cape hung from the man's shoulders. "Now here Kanto, here was one of the greatest champions I have ever seen." The tall figure stated as it looked upon the hologram. The shorter figure nodded excitedly, looking up at the tall figure and then back at the hologram.


"Centurion of Terra. His noble nature meant he always refused to compete in any contest I put before him." The hooded figure stated. "But, in the end I always found a way to compel him to compete, even if he did not see it that way." It then added, a hint of humor in its tone.


"But alas, he is now lost to use, fallen in battle against the great Omega." The hooded figure said as the shorter one looked at the hologram with a sad look on its face. "But…" The hooded figure began before pausing in thought, causing the shorter figure to look back, a quizzical look on its wide face.


"Perhaps it is time for another to take up the mantle Kanto." The hooded figure stated, looking down at the shorter for a moment before looking back to the hologram. "Yes, that is the answer Kanto. There needs to be a new Centurion, then I can have hold the greatest contests in the cosmos once again!"

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Lor-Van System

The Former Seat of the Lor Republic

Lor Time Mark 1898.7 (July 31, 2019 Terran Calendar)


Despite the destruction of Lor-Van during the Incursion, the system still saw space traffic on par with what had been the norm when the planet had still been in place. This was due to the existence of a wormhole where the planet had once been, which was part of a network of wormholes created by the Communion, which provided rapid travel to other parts of the galaxy.


Given the existence of this wormhole in the heart of the Lor Republic, it was of little surprise that the Lor had established a significant military presence in the system to monitor the wormhole. There were several large military space stations, as well as a large number of Lor naval vessels. The later were primarily there to monitor the flow of space traffic passing through the wormhole. At the present, those Lor military vessels were spread out in a cordon around the approach to the wormhole, bringing to a halt the long lines of transports that had been in que to enter the wormhole.


As the gathered transports continued to hold their positions even as more moved up towards the end of the lines. Then, suddenly the large form of a cargo transport began to emerge from the wormhole, although it moved in a somewhat more unusual manner. The transport's engines appeared to be dead, and there was only minimal power operating on the vessel. Yet it continued to move out of the wormhole at a steady pace. Once clear of the wormhole, the transport began moving away from the entry point and in the general direction of the largest of the Lor space stations.


Now that the transport was completely clear of the wormhole, a small figure could be seen at one end of the massive vessel, apparently providing the disabled transport with its propulsion. The figure as dressed in a full length white bodysuit, with black diamond shapes on the shoulders, upper chest, these shapes surrounded by golden yellow trim. The black gloves and boots the figure wore also had similar golden trim, as did the long black cape that trailed behind it.


Once the transport had moved far enough away from the wormhole, several small Lor vessels moved up and locked onto it with tractor beams and began to pull it towards the space station, allowing the caped figure flying freely in space to stop pushing and fly around the transport toward the station at higher speed. Elsewhere, the Lor military vessels began allowing the waiting transports to resume their approach to the wormhole.


The caped figure approached the space station, flying towards a landing bay protected by a forcefield that was keeping out the vacuum of space. The forcefield allowed the figure to pass easily through, where it came down to land in front of a Lor officer.


"It took a little while, but I found them Commander E’tten. A energy spike within the wormhole system damaged their power core, leaving them with barely enough power to keep life support operational. There were a few injuries, but no fatalities." The caped figure stated. She was a female humanoid with dark orange skin and long hair that was dark purple and black.


"Thank you Paradigm." The Lor office responded with a respectful nod. "If it had not been for you, they would have been another of the handful of vessels lost in the network every cycle."


"I am more than happy to be of assistance Commander." Responded Paradigm. "Hopefully the researchers in the Lor Science Academy will….." She had then begun before vanishing in a flash of light, leaving a very shocked Lor officer behind.

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CoVic Station, Kesteven 79

The Spinal Core

July 31st, 2019


"I am...not joking," replied the giant Terran in somewhat stilted Galstandard, "They are called 'Wookiees' in the films...holovids."


The Terran was seated in a small cantina deep in the Spinal Core. The bustling chaos of the nearby market echoed through the sliding doors. Everything about the place was big, sized for a species much larger than typical humanoids. A species that was well represented by nearly a dozen yeti-like humanoids. Most were enjoying their cups or hookah and relaxing in the dim, cold retreat. Every once in a while, someone would step through the doors, rustling the kaleidoscope doorbells and throwing motes of light across the interior.


The Cholaxian across the table roared in laughter and slammed down his glass. The table was littered with cups, ranging from large mugs to petite little things suited for (earthly) espressos. "You are pulling my ear hairs! First 'yetis' and now this? Ha! Don't tell me, you have building-sized lizards too!" The other furry humanoids glanced at the pair indifferently.


The Terran, known locally as Mona, leaned back in a rare, properly sized, chair. A big grin was plastered across her face. She was holding a datapad and stylus, and at her companion's comment, quickly sketched something onto the pad. A hologram of a purple tyrannosaur flickered into view.


"Jolee, meet Gigantosaur." The Cholaxian tipped back his beret and leaned forward.


"Really?" he asked incredulously.


"As real as...," the big woman looked around, searching for the words, "your frost wurms."


Jolee shook his head in disbelief. The small beads woven along his temples clacked quietly.


The pair had been bantering for several hours. To say Mona was thrilled about CoVic Station was an understatement. Her globetrotting had introduced her to so many people and places. Good people, bad people, but all unique and interesting. And their art. Humanity was known for its art, but Mona had discovered the artistry of dozens and dozens of species. No sooner had Viktor and she docked than off she went. Galleries! Holoart! Hard-light simulations! The local Cholaxians in particular were known for their colorful works, a stark contrast to the icy blues and whites of their frozen homeworld. That they had furniture sized for her was just a bonus.


She met Jolee at an exhibition of local Grue art. The pair hit it off immediately. Their get togethers were always fun and helped her learn about the wider galaxy. 


Mona sighed. "This has been fun. I should go home though. I am...scheduled?... to help on exterior construction. Dutch as usual?"


The Cholaxian artist nodded and reached into his bandolier. A flash of light made him wince. He looked up to find an empty chair.



Edited by Dariusprime
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Mike shifted uncomfortably in the waiting room chair just a little too small for his frame drawing his shoulders in to not take up too much space.  He scribed his information on the medical history form in a neat script and slowly stood to hand it off to the receptionist tugging his cardigan down more out of nervous energy than any need to actually do so.  He looked back fondly at Alex where she sat and let out a contented sigh.  Despite owning and running the entire organization she had of course insisted on not bumping one of the other patients off the schedule so they waited among the other expectant parents, mostly from Ashton these days, waiting to see the Specialists AEON had hired and trained in the eccentricities of pregnancies where Terminus energies were involved.


Returning to his seat with care not to jostle anyone in the crowded waiting room he sat and absently smoothed his slacks while Alex contentedly speed read whatever latest reports required her attention on her tablet.  Each time the door swung open his head snapped up as he waited for the name to be called.


"Mrs. and Mr. Albright?  The doctor wi-"  FLASH

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“Moms a little busy right now Katie.”


Currently Triakosia was carrying a fully loaded 747 that had lost all power not long after taking off from JFK. Slowing down an aircraft of this size, let alone safely turning it around, wasn’t as easy as you’d think it was.


“This is going to take a while sweetie, so your going to have to go visit a friend again... yes Auntie Casey will be fine, but make sure you call ahead... no Centurion the cat doesn’t need to come along he’s perfectly fine on his own...”


Not that this would take much longer, she could hear the pilot talking to the tower about the, but she wanted to make sure everyone was okay after there very shortened flight.


“Love you to, I’ll be home as soon as I can. Gotta go!”


As she was close to the ground she felt something strange happening, but managed to hold one until she managed to put the plane safely on the ground.


Then she was gone in a flash of light.

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  • 2 weeks later...



Unknown Location


For each of the four paragons, the transportation from where they were was instantaneous. One moment they were no longer where they had just been, but instead found themselves each standing on a large rock floating in the air, like floating rock islands. There were more than a dozen of these floating rock islands, but each of the four paragons could see the others from where they currently were located. Beyond the rock islands there was a fuzzy grey mist that extended in all directions, like a massive sphere well over a mile in diameter. In addition to being transported from wherever they had been, those that had been in other clothing found themselves also in their costumes.


Before any of the four could do much more than take in their sudden new surroundings than a large imaged appeared in the air above them all. The figure was dressed in a yellow hooded robe, a bright golden mask covering its fact. "Welcome mighty heroes, I am the Gamemaster. I have gathered you here for a grand contest." A voice boomed from the figure. "For eons I have held contests and games across the cosmos and have seen many great contestants. One of the greatest of those was the man known to many of you as Centurion. It was a tragic day when he sacrificed himself to save his adopted world. Powerful, noble and possessing a steely determination, he was seemingly without equal."


"Searching this galaxy, I have identified the four of you as being of potentially equal caliber. So, I have gathered you four here for a battle to determine which of you is the most worthy of being the next Centurion!"

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Phalanx stood firm atop his stoney perch looking down first at his now costumed form then to his fellow heroes and beyond his vision being unable to pierce the dense fog was nearly as concerning as his sudden presence here.  Both were of lesser concern than his link to Alex going silent, that virtually guaranteed he'd been plucked out of prime.  His gaze finally settled on their 'Host' eyes tinged with sadness as he regarded this 'GameMaster' for a long quiet moment.  "If you believe that is a truth you and your games can judge I think you lack understanding of what that means."  he stated plainly his words ringing out in the odd formless space they found themselves in.


The mighty paragon let out a deep sigh and lowered himself to sit on the rock as he watched the Game Master with slight disappointment.  He smiled gently, "The Centurion was not who he was because of his power, heroic acts, or even final sacrifice."  he explained with the infinite patience of a kindergarten teacher.  "The Centurion represented far more,"  the broad shouldered hero looked expectantly to the Game Master, "He was hope, inspiration, and a promise of better things."  Phalanx then fell silent and frowned slightly, "So if your intent is to construct some grandiose scheme to force your challenge get to it we clearly can't stop you from doing so."  he glanced to the others with a shrug, "Or send us home we all have better ways to honor him than your petty games."

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Snapping from a reclining position to upright was jarring to say the least. Fulcrum stood still and ready on her rock, arms at her sides, save for reflexively stretching her fingers. Her eyes quickly scanned the area, and she quirked an eyebrow at the assembled group. Especially after realizing she was in costume. At the Gamemaster's appearance, she looked up and her posture eased. Impassively she listened with her arms crossed. Slowly but surely a look of utter incredulity crept across her face. Almost looked like she was going to laugh.


Phalanx's response drew her attention first, and she nodded several times in agreement. Once he finished, she swept out a hand toward him. "Nicely put."


Arms held out wide, her voiced projected into the void, "The man has been dead and buried for decades. The world doesn't need another Centurion. We have heroes! Heroes with names of their own." She looked around at the other paragons and back to the figure, "You already have one answer. I can only speak for myself, but no. I don't want to be the "next Centurion". I'm sure not going to battle decent people to be "worthy".


Her voice began fading, her hands came together palms upwards. "Why don't we just talk this out face-to-face?"


Mentally, she processed the conversation and the people around her. Triakosia she knew. Great gal, former Legionary from Centurion's home dimension. Phalanx she had never formally met. Flying in similar orbits though she recognized him. A good man as well. The orange woman was new. Judging from the others, Mona suspected she was good people too.


This "Gamemaster" must possess a frightening amount of power.

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Dancia hadn’t doubted the response from the two that she knew as friends, and if the other - who she figured was probably a Lor equivalent, was most likely to go the same way. For all the time he was gone Centurion tended to have that kind of effect on people.


“It probably doesn’t need to be said, but like the other I won’t play in your little games. And especially not in his name!”


She crossed her arms and looked sternly at the Gamemaster, she wasn’t sure what would happen next but she’d stand side by side with other gathered Paragons.

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  • 2 weeks later...



When Paradigm had vanished from the Lor Station, she had initial tensed, given a rather recent experience with being flung back in time. Quickly taking in her new location, she noted the other three individuals, who similarly seemed surprised to be where they were and assumed they had been similarly brought unwillingly to this location.


When the Gamemaster appeared she similarly looked up at the projection and the listened as each of the other three responded, noting they all spoke English, which seemed to confirm they were all Terran. While the Naram had been held in suspended animation on the Curator's Ringworld during the decades that Centurion had been active, she had heard stories of him from Daedalus during latter’s visits to CoVic Station as the Freedom League representative on the station.


"I similarly have no intention of tarnishing the legacy of so great a hero by fighting others for a title I have not right to claim." She responded in accented English.

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