"The Tragedy Of Sharkasaurus Rex, Part 5"
by Wil Alambre
Geisel was gone, his phantasmal form torn apart in savage fury by the
recently de-crowned Sharkasaurus Rex.
The equally ethereal Theodor watched the entire sudden rending in still
shock. As did the rest of the infinite school, millions of fellow ghost
fish that had all gathered to psychically leash the mighty megalodon.
They didn't even realize such a thing was possible. They had survived
life. They had survived death. They were supposed to be free... not fragile.
Even Sharkasaurus Rex seemed surprised. The great megalodon floated in
the upper atmosphere aimlessly. It's pitch black eyes wide and it's
simple animal mind confused. It's jaws flexed open and closed. It's
ghostly body faded transparent and then back solid. All as if a child
experimenting with new experiences.
Theodor felt a hand pass through his small form. Hovering beside him was
the Super Wizard From Space, trying to get his attention while still
watching the great shark. With growing worry he started to say, "We
should back away..."
Suddenly Sharkasaurus Rex snapped its leashes and launched into the
midst of the infinite school.
The shark's massive mouth opened and closed with ferocious speed.
A dozen of the ghost fish were instantly shredded. Spectral scales and
transparent fins were torn apart by monstrous teeth.
A quick swallow and the shark rocketed forward, snapping at more prey.
"Scatter! Hide!" called out Theodor in pitched fearful thoughts. "Rex is
mad! Rex is hungry! Everything is his food!"
The school started to dart away in every direction, streaks of
transparent colours fleeing from the ferocious mass. Waves of telepathic
fear crashed into each other, multiplying panic upon panic.
But in their terror, instinct still gripped most of the ghost fish. Even
when bolting chaotically, they unconsciously bunched together with
others of their kind.
The larger groups just made easier targets for Sharkasaurus Rex, who
slammed into them with rows and rows of terrible teeth. His massive body
flitted in frequency. Many of the small ghosts popped. Many were chopped
up in gnashing bites. Some lucky few passed through the megalodon's body
"Run! To the mountain!" yelled out the Super Wizard From Space. He
clapped his hands and then slashed them out. Another flat plane of
blinding light cut through the air and across Sharkasaurus Rex's eyes.
The beast flinched at the painful brightness passing through his
spectral form and reflexively dimmed it's solidity.
The other fish were awash in their own horror, nothing but unyielding
blues in their minds painting over rationality. But Theodor was a blue
fish, used to swimming in such grim waters. He circled around the
closest of the groups he could, roping their desperation with his own
frayed images of practicality. They grasped at the thought strands and
followed, dragging their own brighter hopes behind them.
He caught as many as he dared in his psychic net before he saw the dull
calcium of fifty-five rows of giant teeth start to reappear,
cheshire-like. They seemed bigger than before, each one now easily
taller than several men. His courage ran out and he dived toward the
planet, dragging any ghost fish that still clung to him.
Down, down, down he swam, back into the thick of the atmosphere and
finally into the rock solidity of the invisible monks' mountain
monastery. Passed rooms and halls and corridors, into the walls and
floors and the thick bedrock roots of the peak. Only when the school's
panicked thoughts finally lightened up into calmer pastel hues did
Theodor finally relax his hold. He watched them a moment, their spectral
forms seemingly safe, milling about within the core of the mountain,
before he alone rose up and out again.
The invisible monks were in an uproar, marching in organized perfect
order at breakneck speeds. They all were headed to the craggy surface of
the mountain, faces firm with discipline. Theodor followed some of them
outside, watching them spread out in a perfect grid pattern. No point of
the mountain side was too steep or too slippery to their trained
balance. Each man took their position, planted their bare feet, and
looked straight up.
Drifting upwards, Theodor eventually reached the balcony where the other
space-champions had been watching. Brody Dharma was standing on the
railing, his tail wrapped around the wood for extra balance, his large
gecko eyes staring up into the sky like the rest of his order. His
jovial nature was masked by a ready cautiousness.
They all watched the night sky, still, as the dark shadow chased fleeing
rainbows, with a single star flinging bands of light. And the shadow was
growing. Rapidly. With each terrible bite.
Then the rainbows came straight down at the mountain. And the shadow
dived after them. Moonlight reflected off dull white teeth as they
gnawed away the slower pricks of running colours at the end.
"The surface of even the stillest lake can be broken by the humblest of
pebbles!" called out Brody Dharma, reaching into his robes and pulling
out his little silver gong.
"This is our shoreline! We are it's many stones!" answered out a hundred
thousand monks in unison. They all reached into their own robes and
pulled out similar silver gongs.
The rainbow of ghost fish dove at the mountain monastery and, like rush
of water, scattered in a splash of directions once they skimmed through
The invisible monks ignored the running school. They all raised their
gongs to the falling shadow.
The darkness opened it's great jaw. The beast flung itself at the mountain.
Brody Dharma struck his gong. A single simple note rung out.
A hundred thousand monks heard the tone and, a half second later, a
hundred thousand mallets all hit a hundred thousand silver gongs at the
The musical sound slammed into Theodor's wraith-like form and shook
every fibre. The musical sound pushed him into a more real state, a more
real place in the universe. For the first time since his death, for a
brief solid second, he felt heavy and cold and alive again.
Sharkasaurus Rex bellowed a ghastly unnatural sound as the tone washed
over him. The echo tried to drag the megalodon toward reality.
The beast resisted, angered. It glared at the mountain side and all the
glints of silver causing it pain.
Brody Dharma struck his gong again. A hundred thousand monks responded.
The perfect tone rung out again.
Sharkasaurus Rex cried out again, the music pulling at it's spectral
skin. But he pulled back, against the weight of the living universe. It
opened it's massive mouth, now gigantic in size, and bit side of the
A chunk of the peak almost a mile in size was ripped out. Boulders and
trees and snow were destroyed by rows and rows of hill-sized ivory. A
sizeable chunk of the planet was swallowed down the megalodon's gullet.
Thousands and thousands of screams were heard and then silenced. A
rainstorm of blood sprayed out between the beast's jaws, washing the
The remaining monks scattered. Feet skipping along loose stones and tree
branches and falling drops of their fallen comrades, they flitted
through the air away from the shark's wrath.
The night sky brightened, and a whip of fusion fire snapped. It passed
through the ghostly body of Sharksaurus Rex, blasting the hole in the
mountain. A explosion of molten stone and burning wood spun out into the
shark's face. The beast roared at the mountain, shaking off the hard
light and noise and debris, and shot down into the mist to hide.
The Super Wizard From Space pulled back and snapped his arm again,
flinging a whip of fusion fire after the running monster. The end
disappeared into the low clouds unseen, only a terrible explosion as the
star power slashed against the planet's surface. The mist glowed, as if
a wide forest or plain had caught fire, and a long dark shadow could be
seen sliding away. A single dorsal fin poked above the mist's surface, a
sizeable hill that slid amongst the hidden valley.
The super wizard rose further up in the air, watching the fin start to
circle the mountain range. There with a quiet din coming from under the
mist as the simpler people living on the valley floor saw the god-like
horror prowling. It was only a matter of time before Sharkasaurus Rex's
courage returned and he fed on the helpless. Or struck again at the
Theodor threw out luring thoughts to the super wizard, bringing him up
to the balcony. The cosmic crowns of all the space-champions were aglow,
their combined power slightly warping the area they stood. Brody
Dharma's own seemed to flare more violently than the others, as if it
was betraying his passive expression.
"You tore at our sun. You struck out against our mountain. You gashed
wounds across planet Amity itself." said Brody Dharma with measured words.
"I could barely affect him," replied the super wizard when he landed. He
seemed to lean over a bit, as if catching his breath. "Even deprived of
his laurel wreath, Rex is one of the most powerful beings in the
universe. And it's clear the infinite school cannot hold him anymore.
"I'm sorry, Theodor. He must be stopped. By whatever means."
Theodor looked at the grim countenances of the gathered space-champions.
He knew the super wizard was right. Geisel was the exuberantly hopeful
one, but he didn't realize how much he leaned on that bright yellow
emotion. Now, in an ocean of deep blacks and blues, he found his own
yellow spot. And it was slowly being stamped out.
"What..." he managed, cutting through the thick silence, "what of the
sound. The little music. From the little gongs. They made me all real
again. They made Rex all real again."
"Sound seems to cage the near-dead," agreed Brody Dharma. "Emperor M
shared that secret with us. The right tone stirs the strands of the
universe enough to catch the spirits on our side of reality. At least
"But Rex has fed on his own students. He has added their own
insubstantial mass to his own. Already he's exponentially larger than he
was when he first arrived. And our combined harmonies did not have the
ability to completely manifest him."
"Then you're gonna need a bigger gong," said the Super Wizard From Space.
Another instance of a story arc that I was figuring was going to wrap
itself up a lot earlier. This was going to be the last issue in the Rex
bit, but a 1700+ word count and only being half-way through meant there
was going to have to be a part six.
The switch to Theodor's point of view actually helped a lot in this
writing. I was correct in my discover last time, that I should have done
it from his point of view the whole time. I also downplayed the other
champions, not wanting them to clutter up the action just to have a line.
Wil Alambre, follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/wilalambre
"Hurry, uni-scribe! We have less than one space-hour to get to the
negotiating table before the Great Disaster arrives!" The desperate uni-diplomat paced back and forth in the room. He kept
looking at the space-clock, watching the moments tick away and
whinnying quietly under his breath. The light in the room was starting
to fade away as ominous clouds rolled in, covered up the twin suns. It
was as if the very planet understood the impending doom and was losing
"Very well, we agree. A tournament, then, to end this rampage. But you have witnessed the power at his disposal. He has a billion billion years of our science-sorcery at his command. Will all you great super-civilizations commit your super-champions to this?"
On a distant world, a mummy-robot and a brown-robed monk silently made their way to the center of a blasphemous cathedral. Though the robot lurched ungainly, it's servos making an uneven whirring sound as they moved the broken machine through black-stone hallways, it held it's bandaged head high, the ghostly
Cocytus the demon-glacier had the Super Wizard From Space engulfed in its icy grasp, forever to be a frozen prisoner of the ninth circle of Hell. Meanwhile the victorious Devil stood atop the massive field of ice, grateful to be back home. The Devil tilted his head back, closed his eyes, and just basked
On a filthy cobblestone hell-road outside the infinite walls of Double-Dis, the Super Wizard From Space stared up at the triumphant face of the Super-Devil. The monster's massive grin dribbled thick lava as he shouted out "Hey there, jerks! Welcome to Double-Hell!"
In the ruins of an ancient city of pillars, an alien octopus pointed eight dangerous looking ray-guns at a white-bearded hermit. "You best be giving me that there data-cylinder, Gavrilo, or I'll vaporize you right where you stand, I done swear it!"
Two figures hurtled through a scarred green warp tunnel underneath the skin of the universe toward the lost planet of the silver skull machine. The Super Wizard From Space was leading the way, encased in a cocoon of hard light that protected him from the rigors of space travel. His companion, a filthy bearded hermit,
The Super Wizard From Space and the Hermit Wizard From Space were trapped in an asteroid belt by a swarm of gigantic space-bees! As it's fellow drones circled uniformly, one particularly grusome space-bee broken from the formation. It was as massive as any of the drifting asteroids, it's gigantic yellow black body big enough to drag smaller free-floating
A monstrously giant bee made of hollow electricity used its clawed legs to peel open the hull of the crashed rocket-ship. It glowed brightly with a pale light, partially transparent and seemingly fragile as it opened up the armored cockpit as if it was made of tinfoil. The ship's two occupants didn't even have a moment to shake off the shock before
The two super wizards stood stock still as the two floors of the building above them were eaten by the ghost of a cosmic megalodon. Bigger than a rocket-ship, it nonetheless hung effortlessly in the air, it's fifty-five rows of cleaver-like teeth surrounding their room as it floated vertically above them. The daylight of the alien sky shone
I am Theodor. I am a rainbow blue fish. I lived on a planet far away. Then I died. But that is was not the end. That was the beginning. I became a ghost. I became part of the infinite school. Thanks to wise Rex. This is the story of Rex. He is big fish. A big shark. Many sizes big. From a far away blue
It took nearly every ghost fish of the infinite school to confidently herd Sharkasaurus Rex into the depths of the invisible galaxy. The megalodon's monstrous instincts were near impossible to fully understand, a hundred million space-years of predatory instinct and insatiable hunger. The spectral school's entire telepathic concentration
"Oh dear me!" shouted Brody Dharma to the marble diamond hall, his gecko eyes spinning in shock as the ghostly forms of Geisel and Theodor circled over the sticky yellow remains of Queen Buzz. "Fish! Please! Contain yourselves!" "Tyrant!" flared out Geisel angrily, telepathically sharing horrific
"Master hero! Master hero!" cried out the young boy, frantic enough to ignore his disciplined training. "A terrible occurrence! The infinite school have lost their hold on their grisly teacher! The cosmic crown reacted suddenly and cut off their psychic leashes! Sharkasaurus Rex is loose!". The young boy wildly rang the same small gong all the monks in this
"Sharkasaurus Rex is feeding on the simple people of this planet," said the
Super Wizard From Space, pointing to where a sticky-looking red hue spread in
the red mist for a space-minute before the fin moved on. "He's converting their
psyches into spiritual mass, growing exponentially. This incredible instrument
is our only hope."
He was lying on the ground. Still at the top of the mountain
monastery. Yes, he was certain of it. There was no mistaking. He
remembered the feel of these particular stones. And the scent of that
particular moss. But he could not remember how he had came here. It
was like his mind was rattling around in his head while at the same
time trying to swell larger than his skull could contain.
I warned him not to use the Gong Ago, as the volume required from that sacred instrument would have unintended side effects. But like an old mule wearing ragged blinders, he rung it out anyway. And that powerful pitch has freed me and my like-minded brethren. My name is Andy Dharma. I am the master villain of the Invisible Monks.
In a clearing at the center, a nine-foot lizards bowed respectfully to his duplicate. He dressed the same way. He moved with the same simple grace. He stood with the same relaxed posture. And he looked back at him with the same calculating eyes, measuring the short distance between them, judging the smallest of movements.
"You are unbalanczed. You cannot be truszted with coszmic power." Her hand closed into a fist and squeezed. From every direction, the spectral fish tossed out their determination in crisscrossing grey lines, trying to ensnare his mind.
"Andy, don't do this," whispered Brody, "You can't." "Yes I can! Yes I will!" he shouted back at him. "No more bad habits disguised as tradition! No more of yesterday's rules deciding today's fate! I will show you what change can accomplish!" He spat on the floor in disgust, and backflipped off the balcony.
On the side of a small lake, a simple man was fishing off the end of a rickety dock. The lake was usually a clear blue, filled with many delicious fish. It was not so now. It was murky, tinted pink and red, the fish preferring to stay closer to the bottom, where the water was cleaner and lines could rarely reach. It meant the man would be lucky for even a small catch, but that would be enough. He lived alone on this shore, in his cabin up the hill, and had only himself to feed.
He wiped his hands on his bloody apron, then stroked his long grey beard with a smile. It was with great experience that he could judge the quality and balance of a blade and in all the experience, he had never worked with such magnificent instruments.
A portion of empty space bubbled and bulged, like plastic melting in a fire, then peeled away to reveal the spitting green end of a warp tunnel. Wrapped and protected in a cocoon of pale starlight, the Super Wizard From Space blasted out of the tunnel opening at incredible speed. The wound in black reality mended behind him with a practiced flick of
Sharp super-lightening split across a sick dry sky as a lone yellow cab pulled up in front of a long abandoned university. The pale driver scratched at his unkept beard. Hunched over the steering wheel, he got a better look through the windshield at the derelict campus. "You sure this is where you wanna to be?" he gruffly asked the passenger in the back seat.
"I will not tolerate your
presence here. Nor your trickery. I will burn away every molecule. I
will crack every atom. I will unravel your infernal form down to the
minimalist components and grind the remains under my boot."
"Once upon a time, five dark lords of multiple underverses made the mistake of signing a series of magical contracts in an attempt to insure some level of trust between them. Inevitably, all five of them went back on their words and now the tangled wording of those contracts have trapped them in the stone sepulchres of Quinto-Hell."
The ashen remains of the gorgon sunk into the circling river of molten rock and disappeared down the sinkhole in reality, pulled toward the punishments of Triple-Hell. A bleating car horn sounded. The Devil tugged at the wizard's shoulder. "Come along, guv. Our ride awaits."
Somewhere in the dank musky darkness swamp, a single snapping growl was followed up by a chorus of hungry grumbles and hollers and howls. Jagged trunks of twisted trees creaked and cracked as something massive pushed through. Huge lungs filled up and expelled, making for a thunderous breathy bass echo.
Black glass and brittle shale and oddly shaped boulders all bashed against each other in the tornado ferocity of the space between conceptual realities. Every small piece was both nonexistant and an immense solidity to itself, dragging and throwing and colliding with its surroundings as the entire mess fell through infinite layers of fractal
Looking about, he could see endless desert interrupted by black stone squares, similar to the one they were taking refuge on. A long wind was blowing, picking up loose dunes, shifting them up and over and around in an ever-moving landscape. It gave everything a burnt look, a rising sea of sand that just faded without an horizon. The only thing cutting through the leather-colored sky was the sun, massive and oversized, ten times larger than it should be.
The Devil, The Secret Living Language, and the Super Wizard From Space stood upon a massive square of black stone half buried in blistering desert sands. "This is it, end of the line," the Devil announced.
In the seedy bowels of a seedy mining camp, Cephalo Paul roused from blurriness to found himself at the mercy of an unkindness of anthropomorphic ravens. The lot of them stood on four clawed talons, spoke through horrifying beaks lined with serrated edges, and had too many ruby-coloured eyes.
"My name is senior lieutenant Yuri Gigan Topithecus, last survivor of the once-mighty space-sasquatch race. I was a hero of my people and a triumph of my government, becoming the first of my planet to journey into outer space... and as I completed my first orbit in my prototype capsule, I helplessly watched the Super Wizard From Space destroy my world."
The Super Wizard From Space towed his wounded prisoner to a dying system in a lonely constellation. It was a place that had been full and vibrant when the universe was young, a very long time ago. Now, it's small, dense white star bled away its diminishing heat and weak light into empty space.
Across the vastness of galaxies, a nameless forager bee achieves a stable geosynchronous orbit with distant Planet M. The ladened insect has been in contact with appropriate representatives, has deposited it cargo. It now maintains a microwave relay with the surface, and only awaits permission from the Hive to open communications.
In the clarity of the desert night, a single point of light smolders against the blue-black curtain. And it slowly grows the closer it gets, falling toward Us through immense distances. The Super Wizard From Space is coming to Planet M.
Emperor gestures back to the great monolith and declares, "At-the-behest-of-our-electronic-ennead, I've-entombed-the-Super-Wizard-From-Space-within-the-Pyramids-Of-Ka! His-power-will-feed-our-preservation-batteries-for-countless-cycles."
"The Szuper Wizard From Szpace is sztill alive. And He sztill has Hisz coszmic crown." We say it aloud. Not to anyone. To ourselves, as swirling shaking thoughts become cold and real. This is real. This is happening. "Why? Why have you done thisz?"
If you'll indulge me, I'll tell you a story about how some people ( who were much too smart for their own good, I'm afraid ) tried to find an easy, quick solution; by doing so, they doomed countless lives to AGES of suffering.
Now, I was halfway through a tale about countless doomed lives... and yes, my friend, I do know the difference between 'countless' and 'seven'. Those tragic academics were only the first direct victims of these newly formed cosmic crowns. What happened next was intended to prevent more loss of life, but it actually placed the entire universe in peril.
"A swarm! A monster swarm! Oh! Oh gods, they were everywhere. They killed everyone. They stabbed them and killed them. And the dead changed into more and went to do the same. Stabbing and changing and stabbing. Everyone's gone!"
Long spear-length stingers, glints of wet toxin at the tips. Wide crystal wings banging against torsos, making thrumming thunder. It's a *blanket* of angry buzzing. Getting thicker as they crawl over each other. At me. Looking to smother me. Kill me. If I'm lucky.
"What I'm doing, it has to be done. Because someone has to do it. Because no one else is doing it. They're scared of what might happen. Scared of what they could lose. Scared of things they can't change. We can't live like that."
Do you have any idea how this looks? We aren't at war anymore. The tournament is supposed to *prevent* this exact sort of conflict from flaring up again. You can't just go around dropping armies on the *home planets* of the universe's seven super-races."
His ancient race long ago unravelled the laws of physics, and they then learned how to redefine them. They harvest fusion fire to sustain themselves, and they hollow out suns to build their private strongholds. They are guardians of the spaces they know and explorers of the spaces they don't.
Reality stretches like canvas pulled taut. Time stutters and scratches and skips, between moments and months. The Wizard takes refuge within the umbra of the system's innermost planet, little more than a corner to be backed into.
Playing tour guide's certainly been more agreeable than playing babysitter. As far as pointless distractions go. If nothing else, its been interesting visiting old haunts, if only to see what's left of them.