A fan story inspired by the recent We Have Issues podcast episode. Check out their stuff here.
Eons ago, the Great Ostrich arrived on Earth from beyond time and space. It came with a purpose unfathomable to the human mind. But worry not, for the Ostrich now sleeps with its head buried in the sand. However when the stars are right, the Great Ostrich will stir and call forth its Chosen.
Not that many years ago…
Stephen rested on the couch after finishing the shading for panel three. His breath was slow and relaxed. His eyes moved back and forth in a state of pleasant REM. Then, the Voice interrupted his dream of dominating every player in a Magic: The Gathering tournament.
“Stephen,” said a Voice that reverberated in the artist’s bones like standing too close to the speakers at a rock concert.
Stephen twitched faintly.
“Stephen,” repeated the Voice.
The mere mortal’s dream changed to a barren land of darkness. Nothing existed except for the piece of land that he stood on. The Abyss peered into Stephen’s soul, and he felt an empty chill.
“Stephen,” said the bodiless voice. “I am the Great Ostrich, and I have chosen you to be one of my heralds.”
Stephen’s eyes brightened. “You mean like the Silver Surfer?”
“Hmm…kinda, but without the powers.”
Stephen snapped his fingers. “Drat!” He cleared his throat; his tone changed to a serious, albeit frightened, tone. “Why have you chosen me?”
“My reasons are my own!” bellowed the Voice causing the Abyss to shutter. Stephen cringed.
The Voice spoke softer. “It may or may not have to do with how awesome your hair is.”
“Thank you,” Stephen flipped part of his long hair behind him. “It does take some upkeep.”
The Voice returned to business. “I have chosen you to enact my glorious plans.”
“What plans are those?”
The Abyss rumbled with thunder. “Were you not paying attention when the Narrator was speaking?! My plans are unfathomable to the human mind!”
Stephen lowered his head. “Apologies, O Feathered One.”
“But you cannot complete my tasks alone. You must seek out the other I have chosen. He is known as Anthony. He has seen my true form, and it has driven him mad. He now dates robots and posts silly things on Twitter.”
“He sounds cool.”
“Sorry, my ostrich overlord.”
“Only together will you create my book, Deathless. It will spread across the globe carrying my word. Once you have reached 129 backers on Kickstarter, you will start The Colony.”
Stephen turned his head slightly skyward as if he could see the Voice. “Why 129? Why not 130?”
The Great Ostrich ignored the interruption. “The Colony will be a place for others to follow you and in turn follow me. You will serve them Kool-Aid made with dirt from the land I kick up with my mighty ostrich legs. They will gladly partake of it because it will increase their creativity a hundredfold. It will connect them to me. I will become their muse and whisper their truth.”
Stephen nodded his head. “Find co-conspirator, create unholy book of doom, set up sinister cult…mm-hmm, mm-hmm. Anything else?”
“One day, a writer will record this very tale. He is perhaps more insane than Anthony. I mean, he is spending precious time on a tale that won’t make him money and will probably go largely unnoticed. He should really be working on his own stories. He already has three chapters to edit and one to finish drafting.”
Yeesh! Now I’m being nagged at by some cosmic horror ostrich.
“Shh, Author, don’t spoil the immersion,” said the Ostrich Deity.
Too late for that.
“Where was I?” grumbled the cosmic beast.
You were telling people that they should check out my stories on Kindle Vella.
“No I wasn’t, and stop that. No one likes self-promotion.”
Stephen checked his watch as the Narrator and Ostrich continued to bicker. He sighed impatiently. It was almost lunchtime. Chili dogs sounded good.
The Great Ostrich sighed. “This is what I get for using creatives.” The Deity cleared whatever passed for a disembodied throat. He addressed Stephen, who was now sitting in a chair reading the latest Deadpool comic. Once the Ostrich started speaking, Stephen tossed the comic over his shoulder like a student getting caught reading a comic in class. He bolted out of the chair. “After the story is published, you will know it is time to begin phase 2 of The Plan.”
“And what is that?” asked Stephen.
“To meet Kevin Smith!”
Stephen’s neck and head jerked back a little in confusion. “Kevin Smith?”
“He is integral to my plan. He is being…prepared as we speak.”
The Ostrich voice laughed evilly. The universe seemed to twist and shake at the sound.
Stephen joined in the festivities.
“Uh, no,” said the Voice with a hint of disdain. “I get to laugh manically; you are a pawn; you get to stand there and bask in my glory.”
Stephen bowed. “Yes, my dark and beaked overlord.”
The Great Ostrich started laughing again.
Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!