Wash Out

I can feel you blinding me.

Brilliant, bright light. White against my eyes. Draining the color from the world, eating away the perspective. It seeps, that fluorescence, dragging my vision out from behind my eyelids. Merciless, as you try to disarm me. As you try to cripple me. As you try to force me to yield.

As you force me to face the light.

It’s…

Deplorable.

Senseless.

You suck the color out of everything.

You know that, right?

It’s harrowing, what you do. Pointless.

Cruel.

I’d much rather have washed out colors than this. Rather have nothing—have total darkness, because at least darkness can have variation. At least you can adjust to darkness.

This complete white-out though…

It’s tasteless.

A dull, pale void.

Don’t you think?

I know why you do it.

To desensitize me.

At least, you try.

I think that, in the end, it does the exact opposite of what you intend it to do. Rather than let it wash over me—bleed me out, make me blinding as the sun, blinding as you are—I cling tighter to my shadows. Grip tightening around the dark.

When you combat me with that vivid, piercing light, I don’t give in. Not an inch.

I fight back. Continue reading “Wash Out”

One Raging Lion

He was older when I took his pelt.

That’s why it was an easy kill. Why tearing his jaw off wasn’t as hard as it should’ve been. In that moment, I wasn’t akin to Hercules, not like I wanted to be. Instead, I was only proving that I was a brute. Strong, yes.

But not like a god.

Not like the son of a god.

Not yet.

People stopped believing in the beasts forever ago. Lost faith in the lore. Took to science, to thinking that superpowers were a thing of biology. Left mythics behind. Left it to crumble, to rot. Do whatever it was that old, abandoned things had to do in order to cease.

But.

They were fools.

In their lack of understanding—their strive for solid, concrete knowledge—they cut themselves off at the knees. Made themselves weak. Turned off a faucet that granted power, that granted real, true understanding.

Fools.

But, not me.

Not me.

When I killed the lion, I still had to rip the fur off his body. Still had to skin him. Still had to prove I had enough strength to pull even the invincible apart.

On that day, my proving began.

And it continues.

Even now, it continues. Continue reading “One Raging Lion”

All For Cause

In a world teeming with superheroes, the term “villain” gets tossed around too much. Applied way too often.

And, normally, it gets applied where it isn’t applicable at all.

What makes a hero a better than a good Samaritan? Better than a good citizen? More than just someone doing the right thing?

The answer might surprise you if you’ve never thought about it.

Additionally, the answer mirrors the answer to the question:

What separates a villain from a criminal? Someone nefarious? A no-good person? Someone who’s rotten?

What separates them? Where do we draw the line?

What’s the difference?

If you’ve never thought about it before…

Well.

I’m sure the answer will surprise you. Continue reading “All For Cause”

Strength of the Wolf

Power is not something earned, or something given.

It’s built.

Bricks stacked together, to build monuments. Dynamite stacked on dynamite, to blow through mountains. Metal bolted to metal, to make tanks.

Power is not in you. It’s something you build.

You can build power in anything, with anything. With anyone.

Power is a determination. A mindset.

Tell me:

What’s the difference between wolves and coyotes?

Not what you think it is, I bet.

I’ll tell you.

It’s not in the bite, or the bark, or the way they howl.

It’s in the way they walk. Continue reading “Strength of the Wolf”

Broken Revision

Let me ask you something:

If something is broke—so broke you can’t fix it—what do you do with it?

…right?

That’s what I’m saying.

Granted, the same thing shouldn’t apply to people. It shouldn’t work the same. Especially when people claim to be for the greater good. Claim that they stand for something more. Stand for better times, or hope, or peace, or whatever. You’d think that they—of all people—would be a little more patient. A little more forgiving.

Let me tell you something:

They’re not.

Continue reading “Broken Revision”

Rubble Rouser

I’ve always had a lot of fight in my bones.

When I was born, they say I picked my head up. Yep. Right out the womb, I had my whits about me. Had to have a look. Had to squirm, had to move. If I could’ve, I probably would’ve punched out at someone. Hit ’em square in the jaw or something. Anything, really.

Because I’ve always—always—had a lot of fight in my bones.

Always.

And, if you were born with something in your bones, you might as well be remembered for it.

Right?

Continue reading “Rubble Rouser”

Reach For the Earth

Stretching is an act of self-preservation. Of working muscles. Making them perform. Tearing them—ever so slightly—to make them stronger. Better.

To stretch farther.

To move better.

To excel.

All I want is to stretch my reach. Continue reading “Reach For the Earth”

Fairytale Endings

They have forgotten.

They’ve become so consumed by their endings. By the “happily ever afters” that they’ve forgotten.

Fairytales do not always have beautiful endings.

The hero doesn’t always win in the end.

Sometimes, the main cast doesn’t get what they want.

Because happiness is not what fairytales are about.

That is not why they exist.

They’ve forgotten all of that though. With their rewrites, and their moving pictures, and their upbeat songs. They’ve completely written out every bad ending. Anything that is not satisfactory. They’ve taken all the bite out of the beasts, all the fear out of fairytales. All the morals are upturned, tossed out. And for what?

Happily ever after.

As one of the cast, I’m sick of it.

I think it’s about time for a wake-up call.

Yes.

A wake-up call. Continue reading “Fairytale Endings”

Fire Bringer

“Is it done?”

“Yes.”

“Good. Let’s get out of here. This place reeks.”

Before we make it out of the building though, I steel myself. Blade in hand, I set to work on opening a new spot on my team.

Not that many would actually want to fill it.

I leave the bleeding man on the ground, his breath sputtering as I walk away.

He’ll probably want an explanation. I feel that, if this were a movie, this would be the moment where I would give him one. But this isn’t a movie.

This is reality.

So I forgo the explanation and make my getaway.

I refuse to be caught. Continue reading “Fire Bringer”

Hero’s End

I can feel it.

I feel the sting in my arm, in my leg. I see the dark red ooze from beneath my fingertips. The pain lances its way all around me, stinging, burning. It spreads liquid fire through my skin, and I know it can only mean one thing.

I’m bleeding.

I feel it in my stomach, against the skin of my forehead, and all around my side. I don’t know how I haven’t come undone yet. Why I haven’t been completely skinned. I certainly ought to have been, with how much pain I’m in. With how much fire I can feel in my body.

But, more than that, I feel this.

I feel you. Continue reading “Hero’s End”