Welcome to another round of the dreaded Fifteen Minute Fiction Challenge. One random genre, one random title and fifteen minutes on the clock to plan, write and edit a piece of flash fiction. How did we do? Let us know… Had a go yourself? Tell us how you got on.
Random Genre: Superhero
Random Title: Ending the Immortals
Ending the Immortals, by Chris Wright
Tucked away in the dust and cobwebs of a forgotten old basement, breathing low, perfectly still like a startled spider, it did not feel like a great plot. It did not feel like the beginning of something new. He shook his head and put such thoughts from his mind, focusing again on the street above him and the faraway sound that would signal his cue. Forever he waited, his huge hand pressed ready against the jagged rock of the basement wall. It was an unassuming thing – white paint on brick, but beyond it stood a cliff – one of the eternal cliffs, upon which sat a temple of the Immortals.
He startled at the sound, coming all at once to his expectant ears. He fumbled for a second, heart quickening, doubts and reconsiderations, and then he was ready. Pressing harder onto the tough old stone of the cottage basement, he felt the familiar tingle pass though his hand and past his glove. The very atoms of the wall started to shake and shudder, distorting like oil mixed in a well before crumbling to dust where they lay. A small hole was formed but onwards he pressed, pushing into the rock of the ancient cliff face, burrowing, digging, ever inwards and then up.
It was heresy, blasphemy, treason. The very act of defacing the cliff was punishable by death but what they had planned was beyond unthinkable. To confront an immortal? They were gods, more than gods. They were to the supers what the supers were to men. They were not to be questioned, much less to be challenged, and yet here he was tunnelling upwards, Sparkle’s distraction ringing in his ears and his goal ringing in his mind. They did not always sit of course; there were hundreds of temples for the dozen immortals, but they had planned it well – Pestilence sat upon his decaying throne, high above his head, atop the rock and the stone and the reverence of supers and people alike. And tonight, Agitator was going to kill him.
Ending the Immortals, by Andy Wright
The sky burned a vicious orange: the same sunless dawn they’d had for the past three months. They’d got Carl yesterday. To the rest of the world he had been The Thorn, but to Joe he would always be Carl: the man who had taken him in when his gifts had first surfaced. He had been their leader: the strongest, the bravest – the best of them.
The attack had caught them completely off guard. They had thought Masonton was safe, protected. Carl had known he would die, there were far too many of them, even for the mighty Thorn. But he had gone to battle anyway, because he was the only one who could. He had fought valiantly, or so Joe had heard. He had killed at least ten of them, one person claimed twenty, but he had succumbed in the end, just like the rest.
It was only a few years ago that twelve immortals seemed infallible – Guardians of justice against all who stood against it. They had fought tough enemies before, but this had been different. They had come slowly at first: strong and fast, but nothing they couldn’t handle. But then they just kept coming, wave after wave, each one stronger than the last. First they were facing a gang, then a mob, then an army.
Joe secured his cape in place. It was old fashioned and cumbersome, but it was tradition, and somehow it made him feel better to be going out the same way as so many others before him. The alarms started blaring, but Joe already knew they were coming. This was the last city to conquer and he was the last immortal to vanquish. “You can do it, Sword,” someone said, but they both knew it was a lie. He wasn’t as quick as Thorn or as strong as Shield.
He could see them now, a wave of fury rolling towards him. He set his face to stone and looked back at the people behind him – the last people. With one great bound, he leapt into the air, feeling the wind rush past. He would meet them with everything he had, but it would not be enough.
Ending the Immortals, by D. C. Ward
They said he would live forever, but even forever comes to an end. He and his brothers, his sisters, his sons and his daughters, had fought until the bitter, inevitable end. War amongst the mortals had been easy. They would come in seemingly endless waves of grunts, spears in hand, which, in time, became swords, and then guns, and then wizardry. But they had come to an end, and in a short space of time. Other enemies came and went, for every world that was lost, a galaxy would be taken, and soon the First Universe was buried in their vast, ever-hungry, gullets.
But each enemy had become stronger than the last, each one harder to squash, though squashed they always became. Then the prayers of every enemy they had ever smote chimed in a corner of a universe long lost in slumber, an ancient border of time and space. The Gods had awoken, and the Great War was under way. The immortals were no gods; they destroyed where gods created. Burned where gods conjured flames from nothingness.
Izrakkel, last of the immortals, pondered this history as he drifted through the cosmos, beaten. It was not the same death as the mortals, but a death, nonetheless, awaited him. A freezing of time, an erasing of memories, a locked door to the future. His part in the grand play was over, and so was his people’s. The Gods had won. The immortals were no more.
Then Superboy came and killed the gods with his atomic mind cannon. Hurray for Superboy, nobody shouted, because they were all dead, and only Superboy remained, weeping naked in a shower of meteors.
(So… yeah… I totally forgot the genre was ‘Superhero’ until the last couple of seconds. Blast.)
There we go. Let us know what you think with a comment or vote. Don’t forget to subscribe or follow us on twitter @Sentient_Ink. You can check out all our writing challenges here, but if you prefer something more thoroughly planned, check out our fantasy serial, The Demons’ Cry.