Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This Episode: "Action Steve, Magic Detective!"

    In our last episode The Action Alliance, Action Steve, Action Raptor, Action Pre, and the magically sentient flying car known as The Super Action Vehicle or S.A.V., were investigating the disapearance of that dangerous supervillain, The Senator, along with Detective Malloy, Hulaville's super hero liason. He was no longer a senator after having revealed that he had been working with and then killed that other dangerous supervillain, The Thrill Seeker. Action Steve now uses his spell book, given to him by his friend and fellow super hero The Mighty Pine Cone, and reveals a hole in the air. That same magical portal that The Senator used to make his escape!

    "I have to admit, grudgingly of course," says Detective Malloy, "That's pretty impressive."

    "kooooughaaaac!" agrees Action Raptor, Action Steve's best pal, who is a feathered dinosaur wearing a cap, goggles, and a scarf from his adventures in time as a pilot in World War I.

    The portal is about the size and shape of a small television screen. It's translucent, and shimmers in purple and yellow. The "screen" shows the snow of an old analog television. A shimmering purple and yellow trail emits from it and goes off down the street.

    "Okay team," says Action Steve, "Let's see where this leads." Action Steve and Action Raptor take the front seat of The Super Action Vehicle while Action Pre and Detective Malloy sit in the back. Although The Super Action Vehicle doesn't Actually have a face, you could swear it's grill is smiling as it lifts off and follows the trail over the streets and buildings of Hulaville. It finally leads to a motel.

    A family had just parked, their station wagon piled with vacation luggage, and had been walking toward the motel's front office? As The Super Action Vehicle lands a few spaces nearby in visitor parking. Two children, a young boy and young girl shriek with delight and run toward The Action Alliance, who greet them warmly.

    "Hey kids!" says Action Steve.

    "Thraaaaaawk!" greets Action Raptor.

    Action Pre, Steve, and Raptor, all sign autographs while Detective Malloy rolls his eyes. He walks off and follows the purple yellow trail to a motel door. He knocks on the door.

    "Hey anybody in there?" Malloy asks.

    No answer.

    Detective Malloy walks back to see Action Raptor being petted by the girl and the boy sitting in the driver's seat of The Super Action Vehicle while Action Steve plays the kids his theme song on his Ukulele.

    "Action Steve will save the day!
    Action Steve will save the day!
    Action Raptor too!
    Action Raptor too!
    Action Raptor too!
    We're gonna rescue you!"

    Malloy walks over to Action Pre who is standing with the children's mother and father autographing his book and cd, both titled "It's Me Action Pre!" for them. They are big fans and already had their own copies.

    Malloy whispers into Action Pre's ear, " The trail leads to a motel door. I'm gonna go get the key to the room. Meet me there when you're done."

    Action Pre nods in a serious manner and then smiles a the couple as he hands his book back, "It's always great to meet such wonderful fans. But if you'll excuse me, The Action Alliance have other plans."

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Monday, January 25, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This Episode: "Is this the end of The Original Mr. Evil Elli Manalo?"

    Last episode one of the first villains to fight Action Steve, The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo, was underground in Hulaville, looking for one of the secret hatchways that Action Steve uses to fly into the city from his Secret Action Lair! The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo's second in command, Louis Lounatik Nguyen, now going by the name of Lounatic, saw this as a perfect opportunity for an ambush. With the help of The Senator, an ancient wizard who used magic to send Mr. E-vil's gang away, Lounatic has revealed that he will replace The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo with a clone under his control!

    The clone of The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo has pushed the original into a deep pit, and as The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo hangs onto the edge Lounatic points his gun at his former boss, preparing to fire! The clone and The Senator look on at The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo, grinning. The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo was grinning too, but was full of rage.

    As he struggles not to fall he says, "You better.. You better make sure I'm dead!"

    "Oh I intend too," replies Lounatic, he turns to his two compatriots. "Gentlemen, hold him." Each of the men take an arm as Lounatic points his gun into The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo's gut.

    BANG!

**************

    Action Pre, Action Raptor, Action Steve, and the newly sentient Super Action Vehicle are now at the last known location of The Senator with Detective Malloy, special liaison to Hulaville's super hero community. They were in an alley, the kind kids love to ride their bikes through. Today it was a no go. Police officers were at either end and the alley had been blocked off with police tape. The Senator doesn't hold public office anymore but people had gotten used to referring to him that way. His life as a senator came to an end when he killed the dangerous supervillain known as The Thrill Seeker. The Thrill Seeker and The Senator had been old friends or old enemies. Each of them were hundreds of years old. The Senator had killed The Thrill Seeker with magic, and the killing had been caught on video by the unregistered super hero, Pimp Racer.

    "I don't know what you three hope to find," said Detective Malloy, shaking his head."Witnesses said he opened a hole in the air and squeezed through it. They said he extended himself unnaturally, like he was made of silly putty. Then the hole and The Senator disappeared."

    "It's four of us," corrected Action Pre. "Isn't that right S.A.V.?"

    BEEEP! The Super Action Vehicle beeped happily, startling Detective Malloy.

    "Should I stop mentioning that this job continues to become weirder and weirder by the day?" asked Detective Malloy.

    "Maybe by the Minute," commented Action Steve. "Disappeared by magic did he? I think I might have something for that." Action Steve propped up his Action Ukulele against the alley wall and opened the large, old, yellowing, dusty spell book given to him by his super hero friend from another dimension, The Mighty Pine Cone.
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Friday, January 22, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This Episode: "The Inevitable Double-Cross"

    We see complete darkness. We hear complete silence. Then there's a loud POP! as a manhole cover falls from the ceiling. The hole lets in a shaft of light illuminating a subway tunnel that's easily a hundred years old. Silt has been piled up on corners and edges by rivulets of water. Water drips from the ceilings. Give this place a few million years and it'd be a perfect tourist spot for spelunkers. The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo and his gang climb down from ropes. The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo wasn't wearing his normal red leather trench coat. Instead he was wearing red coveralls with flames painted on them and a few unnecessary buckles. "Well!" He says, "I think we're getting somewhere!" His gang began placing lights around the area so they can get a good look around. It was a small room with 3 walls. One large circular opening revealed a large drain pipe. The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo had a look down and whistled. It went down much farther than he could see.

    Lounatic, The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo's second in command, climbs down along with the other gang members and began inspecting the room.

    "Do you think there are mutant alligators in the sewers?" The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo asks. "It's not a proper sewer without mutant reptiles"

    "That's really the last straw for me." says an exasperated Lounatic, who pulls out his gun and points it directly at The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo.

    Mr. E-vil doesn't act surprised. "Oh Louis, what can you possibly be thinking? I've been keeping an eye on you. I know all about your operations. I know all about the banks you've been robbing. I knew you'd try to take me down but is this really your plan? We are surrounded by my own men. Some of my most loyal. And unless I'm very much mistaken you've got no one here with you!"

    "You are mistaken," said a voice from the darkness. And it was a quiet darkness.

    Wait a minute, where were his men? The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo looked around and couldn't see anyone around but the three of them. Instead of being frightened The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo was pleased. It looked like he had been taken unawares after all. The owner of the voice stepped out from the darkness. It was The Senator! The one on television who had been revealed to be at least hundreds of years old and a sorcerer! Mr. E-vil hadn't been expecting this either.

    "Don't worry about your men. They're safe." Lounatic says.

    The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo, still smiling, says "You don't think they'll follow you once I'm gone do you?"

    "Oh a piece of you will remain," replied the senator. "Say hello to your new replacement."

    Out of the shadows walks another figure. It's another Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo! A clone! The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo is now angry as this other Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo, dressed all in black, charges toward the original. The two begin to trade punches but the other Mr. E-vil has the advantage of momentum and pushes The Original Mr. E-vil into the large drain. Mr. Evil grabs the edge as he falls in and hangs on.

    Lounatic walks into The Original Mr. Evil Manalo's view. "You know that fall could probably kill a man." Lounatic idly comments as if he were commenting on the weather. "But, just to be sure." Lounatic points his gun right at Mr. E-vil.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This Episode: "The Plan"

    Lounatic walked into the nondescript warehouse near Hula Bay that served as The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo's base of operations. The Original Mr. E-vil greeted him in a voice that nearly shook the rafters. "Louis 'Lounatik' Nguyen! How are you?" the tone was somewhere between suspicion, sincerity and mockery. Lounatic knew this was a sign the man was annoyed. Lounatic didn't really care.

    "Hello Mr. E-vil. You wanted to see me?" Lounatic replied.

    "Indeed I did! I wanted to know if you had time in your busy schedule for our little plan." The words, "busy schedule" were delivered with almost pure mockery, and just a dash of suspicion. The "Our" that The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo was referring to was the rest of his gang. Lounatic knew how likely it was they had contributed to the plan. "Action Steve has been fired from his job," The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo continued, "and I'm not sure when he'll get another one. The time has, once again, come for us to search for his secret hideout."

    Not this again, thought Lounatic unhappily. He remembered the last time. It had taken months to locate just where one of the secret hatchways Action Steve used to launch from his lair in his flying car. Once one of the men found it they had inadvertently triggered an alarm. He reported that the world seemed to shimmer around them for a moment and then the hatch was sealed up. Days of investigation revealed that the hatch had been sealed with concrete, and unless they wanted to get a crew of men with heavy equipment at the site, not the sort of thing a criminal who wants to avoid attention would do, they wouldn't be able to discover where it had lead. They'd tried finding another hatchway with the same result. Only this time the men at the scene had been teleported to the Hulaville police station. It was clear Action Steve had very powerful friends. But Lounatic was still convinced the man was not a threat, and he said so.

    "Not a threat eh? You weren't able to best him in combat when last we met. We lost a lot of our gang and had to run away!"

    It was true, Action Steve was a better fighter than Lounatic, but what did that matter? Action Steve dressed in a flashy costume and he fought very obvious villains in other flashy costumes. All one had to do to avoid him was to not wear a mask! Lounatic knew there was no point in saying this. Instead he asked, "What did you have in mind sir?"

    "Our problem has been that we always look at the surface," The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo replied. "I'm betting that's where the security is strongest. Instead we need to go underground and search for unusual features. I'm betting a newly built tunnel will stick out among the old sewer drains like a sore thumb. We'll search the entire sewer, one section at a time. We won't spread out like before. We'll have our entire team down there, in each location, looking for alarms and this magical shimmering the men have talked about. We'll bring everything we need to defeat Action Steve. We'll be ready."

    Actually, it was a good plan, and perfect for Lounatic's purposes. He might even try it himself once The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo was finally of the way. Action Steve was not a threat, but he could be a nuisance. "Good idea sir," Lounatic replied. "May I help with organizing the search plan?" The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo nodded happily. Louis liked the plan. That was good. Louis was as smart as he thought he was, but, Mr. E-vil thought to himself, nowhere near as clever. No doubt his second in command, Louis 'Lounatik' Nguyen, was planning to ambush him in the sewers. He remembered when he was second in command like Louis was now. It was good to have ambition, and treachery keeps the wits sharp.

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Monday, January 18, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This Episode: "Daylight Robbery!"

    BOOM!

    In broad daylight, a street facing wall of First Hulaville Bank has exploded outwards! Debris has landed everywhere. Cars are covered in dust. People have been knocked down and injured. A cloud of dust fills the empty hole where the wall had been. The alarm blares on. A black car races toward and then screeches to a halt in front of the new opening. Three figures, all dressed in black, wearing black gloves and ski masks, holding very large guns and larger bags of money, erupt from the smoke and quickly get in the car. The car is already moving just as the last thief gets in.

    The Driver wears all black as well but he isn't wearing a mask. His name Louis "Lounatik" Nguyen, 2nd in command to The Original Mr. E-vil' Manalo. "Any problems?" He asks the 3. They take off their masks as the car easily races across a busy city street. They are two men and one woman.

    "None at all Louis." The woman grins.

    "Good. And I've decided I like Lounatic. Just Lounatic, nothing else. But I'll have none of that spelling things with a 'k' business. Hold on." Lounatic expertly corners into an alley at high speed and parks in an open garage. The door quickly closes. Two serious looking teenage girls in coveralls, goggles, and face masks open the doors for the bank robbers, who quickly remove their guns, bags of money and other personal effects from the car. The two girls proceed to replace the license plates and repaint the car with professional skill. The 4 criminals quickly walk into the safe house and go change. The men in one room. The woman in another. Once changed, they put their clothes in plastic bags and give them to the girls, who are nearly finished with the car.

    Lounatic looks at his watch as the woman watches him. He waits a few minutes and says, "Go." She calmly walks out the front door. There are no police. Everything is calm outside. There's a kid sitting on a curb using his skateboard as a seat. She walks behind him so there is little chance of even the kid identifying her later. Looking at the woman walking away from the safe house, no one would think that she had just robbed a bank. 10 minutes later the girls drive off in the newly painted car. They are no longer in cover alls nor does their manner suggest they are professional criminals. Instead they're dressed and acting very much like normal teenage girls. 15 minutes later another bank robber leaves. 23 minutes pass, the third robber leaves. Lounatic is all alone in the safe house, on the phone. "Have the car meet me at the street corner near the house. Be there in 10 minutes."

    We hear the "yes sir." on the other line. Lounatic made a mental note to not do this again. Robbing banks is very risky. Robbing a series of banks and getting away with it is nigh impossible. But this seemed the best way to get a lot of money in a short period of time. Now that he had it, there were safer ways to make more. There was one more thing to take care of. His boss. Louis hadn't meant to become a henchman for The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo. He had been down on his luck, and the gang had seemed like a good business opportunity. But as he began working for the gang it soon became apparent that Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo wasn't interested in making or even taking money. Everything in his life seemed to center around that fool Action Steve.

    Action Steve fought giant potatoes in a flying car using a musical instrument as a weapon. That clown wasn't a threat. He was ridiculous, and easy to avoid so long as you didn't seek him out or inadvertently dress like a tuber. But Mr. E-vil seemed obsessed. No, Action Steve was not important and The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo had to go. Lounatic hit his speed dial.

    "Louis 'Lounatik' Nguyen!", The Original Mr. E-vil Elli Manalo answered. "Where have you been?"   

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Action Pre Biography!





Action Pre was once a microbiologist with a habit breaking into rhyme when excited or agitated. He was working on nanotechnological cybernetic amoeba's with his 3 lab assistants and his wife, when the nefarious villain, The Thrill Seeker burst in and destroyed Action Pre's research. The chaos caused by The Thrill Seeker also lead to the death of Super Dudical Steve (a Steve from another dimension) and Pre's wife. Pre decided at that moment to become a super hero! He altered his genetic make up and cybernetically enhanced himself to become a super powered super hero! His former lab assistants are his back up singers now. And although Action Pre recently lost the race to become Hulaville's mayor, he has just released a CD and an autobiography, both called "It's Me, Action Pre!" His single, "Party Paramecium" is currently at the top of the the charts.

    Action Pre was created by Parius Futch and he continues to contribute ideas for Action Pre's storyline.

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Monday, January 11, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This Episode: "Rich Richman explains it all!"

    A television turns on. You see a man in his fifties sitting at a desk, holding a few papers. He looks directly at the camera. "This is Rich Richman for the Hulaville Nightly News." The man looks down at his papers for a moment and looks back up again. "The state and the country are still in shock after having learned that The Senator has killed the notorious villain known only as The Thrill Seeker.
    A vigilante calling himself," Rich Richman pauses for an exasperated moment, "Pimp Racer, illegally broke into Hulaville prison and captured the killing on video. He then released it online where it has had over 60 million views. For those few that haven't seen it, we now present it. Viewer discretion is advised."
    The screen cuts to a grainy black and green video that never the less clearly shows The Senator standing in front of The thrill Seeker's specially designed security cell. The Gaurds are asleep on the floor as if they've fainted. A strange glow surrounds The Senator's Hand.
    "I'll be seeing you," says The Thrill Seeker.
     "Not if there's nothing left to heal. Not if I don't leave anything, not even the smallest of remains."
    The Thrill Seeker looks thoughtful, "You know I've always wondered about that."
    "You don't get to find out if I succeed."
     "Well now, I think a lot of people would disagr--"
    Curling ribbons of light extend from The Senator's hand and envelop The Thrill Seeker, who screams in pain. It's over in a moment and the lights go back out. We see The Senator, now no longer in green but in color, walking away from an empty cell. In the cell there aren't even any ashes. There is no smoke.
     "Damn!" we hear a voice whisper, "The Senator killed the Thrill Seeker!"
    The television cuts back to Rich Richman. "That last voice we heard was of a vigilante going by the name of," Rich Richman re-reads his paper as if he can hardly believe the riduculous names these people give themselves, "Pimp Racer. This individual is not registered with Hulaville police force as a super hero. We have also confirmed Pimp Racer was the unknown man chasing The Thrill Seeker in the streets of hulaville earlier this month. Meanwhile there is no sign of The Senator since his magical Disapearance a few days ago."
    We cut to a scene outside of The Senator's Mansion, He is on foot running from police.
    "Stop!" says one of the officers as they give chase. The Senator runs into an alley. The police are still hot on his tail. He runs into another street, right into a group of reporters. The Senator looks to the approaching police behind him. He's trapped. The Senator looks up.

    At you.

    The Senator reaches for the sides of the television screen and pulls himself through, to the amazement of the reporters. As he crawls out of the screen it pulls at him like taffy. Static Surrounds the Senator. Then he's out and kneeling in what looks like a cheep motel room. The Television is a smoking husk filled with molten glass. Smoke pours off of him. He's covered in soot. Molten glass cools and makes crinkly noises on his clothes.
    The Senator gets up. Cleans himself off as best he can with a hankerchief and then...

    He smiles right at you.

    Then, with a powerful gust of wind he pushes you out of the room, out of the hotel, out of the parking lot, you float above the city like a child's balloon that's been let go. Eventually you fall to the ground.

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Friday, January 8, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This episode: "Return to Hulaville!"

Action Steve and Action Raptor materialize in The Super Action Vehicle in The Action Lair's garage in a cloud of sparkly dust. The Action lair lies underground beneath The Cold War Cafe, a 1950's themed restaurant owned by Action Steve's pal and benefactor, Chef Patrick. Action Steve lives here rent free. In exchange Patrick has exclusive access to any interesting technology Action Steve brings back from his adventures. Action Steve wasn't sure if that applied to the magic spellbook he just brought back but he'd mention it anyway.

The Spellbook had been given to him by a wizard and champion of Justice called The Mighty Pine Cone! Action Steve met The Mighty Pine Cone After Chronotron The Chronobot, another benifactor of Action Steve's and master of time and space, transported him and his best friend, Action Raptor, to the Magical Land of Eranor. The Mighty Pine Cone and Chronotron were confident that the spells in Action Steve's new spell book would work the same in Hulaville as they did in Eranor, but Action Steve would just have to try and see. Action Steve and Action Raptor were also happy to learn that their new/old friend The Super Action Vehicle would not stop being a person once they arrived in Hulaville. The Super Action Vehicle was The Action Duo's flying car from the future, and it had apparently magically become sentient their adventures in Eranor. Now that they were in Hulaville again, Action Raptor asked The Super Action Vehicle how he felt.

"Thraaaak?"

BEEP BEEP!

"Sure. I don't mind if you go out and explore," answered Action Steve. "You really don't have to ask permission. You're your own person after all." replied Action Steve.

BEEEEEEEEP!

"Sure we'll give you a call when we need you. Have fun!"

BEEPBEEPBEEP!

As The Super Action Vehicle zooms off to have fun in Hulaville, Action Steve and Action Raptor walk into the living room of The Action Lair and are greeted by Robo-Butler 3000, Action Steve and Action Raptor's robot butler. "Welcome back Sir," greeted their automaton manservant. The Robo-Butler 3000 was another piece of technology Action Steve had acquired during his adventures. "I've taken messages from Detective Ace Malloy, Chef Patrick, Action Pre, The press, and The Action Steve Fan club. Also I regret to inform you that your supervisor has called to say you've been fired from your job at the call center."

"Well crud," replies Action Steve. "I suppose that's the sort of thing that happens when you're on the run from the law. By the way, please remind me to get you tested for personhood. You've been acting far too much like a person lately for me to keep you here as an unpaid servant."

"Actually you have been pardoned of all all wrongdoing in the wake of the latest political scandal. The Senator proved to be an immortal wizard that has killed The Thrill Seeker. Part of an ancient rivalry, it has been guessed. The resulting media attention has allowed Mayor Malloy to quietly drop all charges. Normally, Mayor Malloy said, you would be sentenced to community service, but we both agreed, you already do that. And tests for my being a person won't be necessary sir. However if it would make you feel better I would like a salary once you get a new job and I'd like to have Tuesdays and Wednesdays off."

"Done. Looks like I need to look into breaking into the lecture circuit after all." replies Action Steve. "The Thrill seeker's really dead?"

"Apparently so. A vigilante calling himself 'Pimp Racer' caught a video of The Senator casting a spell and vaporising The Thrill Seeker. The video has gone viral as they say. That would appear to be the end of him, and of The Senator's Career. The Senator, meanwhile, has disappeared."

"Wow"

"Indeed sir."

"I guess I need to make some phone calls and appearances to let everyone know I'm back. Then I think we ought to track The Senator down." says Action Steve.

"Good idea sir."

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This episode: "Questions and Answers!"

Action Steve remembered when he first encountered The Intention, as Chronotron The Chronobot calls it. He had been walking around Hulaville in what he would come to call his Action Steve costume, but just then it was simply a costume. Steve had made a blue mask and cape and bought some gloves to match and went walking around in super hero garb just for fun. As he was walking along trying to see if he could play the ukulele with his gloves on Steve spotted some men in a side street. One of them was pointing a gun at the other and threatening him. The sensible thing would have been to call the police, to run away. And indeed in an infinite number of universes, this is exactly what Steve did. Most of those Steves never became a super hero. This Steve, the one that at that moment became Action Steve, threw his Ukulele at the man holding the gun. Action Steve knew, before the instrument hit the man's head, that it would knock him out. The instrument should not have been able to do that, but the man with the gun dropped to the ground. His friends made to grab it but Action Steve kicked the gun away and punched another man right in the face, knocking him out as well!

Up to this point, Action Steve had never been in a fight in his life, but it felt completely right, he was in control, in the zone, as clich├ęd as it sounded, there was no other phrase for it. The intended victim had run away but the remaining thug was angry. He apparently didn't care if his intended victims were probably already calling the police. He was also much bigger and stronger than Steve. The man caught Steve in a headlock and it was then that Steve began to realize it might have been foolish to rush at a group of thugs. He didn't know how to fight. He was dressed like a comic book super hero and was now about to die or at least get a serious thrashing. Fear overtook him...

Then there was an explosion. The nearby brick wall had erupted in dust. Action Steve used it as a distraction to get loose from the thug's grip and get some distance. As the dust cleared Steve could see clearly in letters carved into the wall a foot and a half high: "Action Steve, you can do this and more. Together we will tip the balance."

The thug went from angry and menacing to nervous. "It's a trick!" he yelled.

But Action Steve knew it was no trick. He knew that someone or something wanted to help him capture this man and bring him to justice. Action Steve Picked up his cracked and nearly broken Ukulele and before the man could react, Action Steve smashed the instrument over the man's head, knocking him unconscious.

"It was a similar story with me," replied The Mighty Pine Cone. "Of course I already knew how to fight and was a bit younger than you, but the mysterious intention made itself known to me as I was fighting some local brigands. As it did you. It could help me in battle, turn fortune to my side, and help me in other ways if only I was willing to protect the weak, defend freedom, and fight only for justice. It asked for help to "tip the balance" as it likes to say. Not too long after that, Chronotron The Chronobot here came to help me as he does many heroes throughout The Multiverse. I've also recruited those of a like mind and formed The Order Of The Pine Cone."

"I've got The Action Alliance," replied Action Steve.

"I do not suppose it is important that you accept the true nature of the multiverse Action Steve," said Chronotron The Chronobot, a huge boxy robot and master of time and space, "We both work alongside The Intention as I've come to refer to it because we both believe in helping people, and we believe that The Multiverse ought to be safer, fairer, and more just."

"Chronotron, if you and These heroes will assent to it, I'd like to train Action Steve and Action Raptor a little in the ways of magic and of combat before they go." said The Mighty Pine Cone. "Does their world even have any magic?"

"It does," responded Chronotron, "but it is hard to get to, unpredictable, and much of it lies dormant."

"I'd love to hang around and learn more. What about you A.R.?"


"Thrrrrrraaaaak!" Action Raptor, Action Steve's feathered dinosaur pal, nodded happily.

"We should also ask The Super Action Vehicle," said Action Steve. "Oh yeah I would like to talk to you about him Mighty Pine Cone, but don't we need to get back?" Action Steve turned to Chronotron, "Or do you propose to transport us to the correct time as well as place no matter how much time we've spent here Chronotron?"

"I will take you to one of the Hulaville's most similar to the one you remember, where little time seems to have passed and one that also will most need your help in the near term," Chronotron replied.

"Ok, I guess we're going to be your guests for a while Mighty Pine Cone, We'd love to learn anything you can teach us," said Action Steve.

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Monday, January 4, 2010

The Astonishing Adventures of Action Steve! This episode: "The Good, the Bad, and The Mighty Pine Cone!"

Lord Rudolf was only wearing trousers, no shoes, no shirt, but that's not the main reason he'd be asked to leave at many a local eating establishment. He was also easily 12 feet tall, had massive sharp claws, huge fangs, and was covered in green scales. He was also a killer of men, dragons, faries, gnomes, tiny robots named schmoo and anything else that had got in his way. Action Steve learned later that he used to be a wizard, but had been frail and unhealthy. He seemed pretty healthy now after having performed magical experiments on himself. He also had a severe mean streak. Lord Rudolf was currently backed up in a corner and surrounded by several Dragons, Sir Sarah The Knight and Former Warlord, The Wizard Neville The Great, Action Steve, and Action Raptor, and The Super Action Vehicle who had only recently come to life (Action Steve was going to have to ask somebody about that) and become the newest member of The Action Alliance.

"Please come with us peacefully. I can promise you'll finally get a fair trial Rudolf. Parius, King of the Dragons, will see to that," says Action Steve as he points his Action-lele directly at Lord Rudolf.

"I am grateful for the consideration," Lord Rudolf replied, "But you and I both know that even if I had a fair trial I'd be found guilty. Because, I am guilty!"

"We've got you surrounded. You can't escape," said Sir Sarah.

"Ah, but you see my lady, not one of you will make the first strike. I daresay you could all take me down and imprison me once again. But as before, you would not do so without," he grinned, "casualties." Just as Lord Rudolf was about to strike, The Mighty Pine Cone jumps down from the cliff, holding his lute like a club, this bearded man in animal fur strikes Lord Rudolf on the head. Sparks fly when the body of the lute hits the reptilian's head and Lord Rudolf falls unconscious to the ground.

Just behind the prone body of Lord Rudolf something the size and shape of two upright cars appears out of a waviness in the air! Chronotron The Chronobot has finally arrived!

"Well you took your sweet time!" complains Action Steve. Action Raptor was about to erupt with a dinosaur equivalent of "yeah!" but saw that everybody else besides The Mighty Pine Cone, Action Steve and himself, including Sir Sarah and Neville The Great, were bowing before Chronotron as if he were an object of worship.

"Huh?" asks Action Steve.

"Actually this is kind of embarrassing," answered Chronotron.

"Most people around here think of him as a god," explained The Mighty Pine Cone. "Perhaps it's best we speak of this in private." The Mighty Pine Cone turns his attention to the bowing Dragons and Humans, "I'm sure these fine humans and dragons can work together to keep a killer safely away from innocent people."

"Agreed," says Chrotron, and with that, Action Steve, Action Raptor, The Mighty Pine Cone, The Super Action Vehicle, and Chronotron The Chronobot shimmer away, leaving the dragons, humans, and the unconscious body of Lord Rudolf to deal with things on their own for now.

The group reappears in a warm room with a nice roaring fire, There is a dining table in the middle of the room, and shelves upon shelves of books on the walls. The fire bothers Action Steve's asthma a bit, but he doesn't comment. Instead he asks The Mighty Pine Cone, "Are we some kind of versions of each other?"

The Mighty Pine Cone is about to respond but Chronotron Interjects. "The question is irrelevant. You still speak as if you believe that continuity is real. That the past is real. You should know by now that the past is but a memory which happens to coincide with events in other universes which are other moments that you, The Action Steve of this moment, has never been to. You just believe you have."

"I'm sorry Chronotron but yes, I still do believe the past is real. I think there is a connection between one moment and the next, more than mere coincidence. If there is no past or future, just a series of moments that think they're connected, why do you try to do good? Why did you rescue us from The Mighty Pineapple? Why have you been helping The Mighty Pine Cone here?"

There was silence. But Action Steve could see that The Mighty Pine Cone and Action Raptor didn't really believe that there was no past or future. Their memories of the past were largely consistent with the memories of others and they experienced the future constantly becoming the present all the time.

"Because I, like The Intention, believe that doing good in one universe has an effect on the overall balance of justice, fairness, and peace in other universes. We are all trying to tip the balance."

Just what is The Intention? Find out in the next episode of The Astonishing Adventures of Acton Steve!

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