This madness had been going on for about four months, if one can tell time with any accuracy on a multiversal scale.
The mad godling, Ragnarok and his power-augmented generals had rampaged from parallel Earth to parallel Earth, invading them with what seemed to be a creeping alien swamp filled with techno-organic plants and insects. This odd swamp seemed to 'infect' each reality with its ooze, and to siphon life energies from each place it touched down.
Most of these realities had metahuman populations. Mostly superheroes, but, some not.
Each reality sent its protectors to do battle with the superhuman madmen who violated it. Most of those champions lost. BADLY. Nearly all of the invaded Earths were overwhelmed with the alien swamp-life, and the majority of any oppositions, be it human or superhuman, failed in their attempts to protect their native lands. Many metahuman heroes and even villains lost their lives in the attempts, their bodies and powers fed to the swamp.
Ragnarok's generals had destroyed about 74 various Earths in this campaign. What no one outside their number stuck around, or, in some cases LIVED long enough to find out was, that the swamp issued from a central locale. A "Hub Earth", if you will. This Earth, if anyone was savvy enough to know, was designated Earth #86404-F, in the Omniversal scheme of things.
Millennia ago, it was annexed by an alien race called the Qollitaar. They were advanced scientists and conquerors who had decided to use the fledgeling life on the young Earth as a gigantic petri dish for their genetic experiments. One thing led to another, and another and another... Cut to 986 years later, and the entire planet had been transformed into one gigantic root system of techno-organic swampland with a ravenous appetite for life energy. The Qollitaar themselves had even perished by their own creations.
Simultaneously, on yet another parallel Earth, the psychotic young god who had named himself Ragnarok and his power imbued generals lay waste to his world. This was not the same Ragnarok who had already cut a swath of destruction through the past, present and future of the superhero-infested Earth that you may know. That one was ultimately defeated and dispatched, though it cost that Earth dearly. This was a different, but no-less maniacal bastard god.
The original Ragnarok was the time travelling love child of Thor and Hera from the Earth designated #99101-M. He was a time-traveler, conceived in 1991, and jumped forward in time to begin his rampage. THIS Ragnarok had been the fruit of a tryst between the ever-randy god, Zeus, and Frigga, the wife of Odin, birthed a decade later than his counterpart in 2001. He was, however, stolen away by this Earth's Hera and placed on Earth to wreak havoc in much the same way as his counterpart had. Once again, Hera had given the bastard infant the lion's share of her own power in hopes of his causing carnage. This child's DNA being slightly different, he grew to be slightly more powerful. Hera also imbued him with a malevolence unparalleled. He grew much the same way as the other Ragnarok, only, instead of being immediately adopted by loving, if bland, parents, this version, named Edgar Haller, was put through the American foster care system. It was not an easy or pleasant upbringing, and, when his god powers began to manifest even earlier, at age 11, Haller was already embittered and perhaps slightly psychotic.
at age 12, Hera, who had this time been watching and waiting, along with her oracle, Pythia, approached the boy and told him all about his heritage and what she wanted from him. The two laughed at the misery he would visit on his absentee father, Zeus's precious humanity. Hera cackled with glee... right up until the moment "Ragnarok", which she had named the boy as a slight to his mother, Frigga, ripped her head from her shoulders. Ragnarok was about to set upon Pythia when he heard her whisper a fearful "Sweet Zeus, please! Not again!"
Ragnarok demanded to know what she meant by that, and thus, she shared with him a vision - The entire story of the previous Ragnarok from a far-flung parallel reality and how he and his superpowered army was defeated by the united heroes of Earth. How his time-travel portal had been disrupted, and he'd been split in two... with one Ragnarok finally put to death in a desolate futurescape, and how the other had been banished to a separate plane of existence, only to return half a millennium later with a more powerful army of hellbeasts, to wreak havoc once more.
Ragnarok, still driven to fulfill his purpose, executed the oracle, but had gleaned enough information to begin his mission. He now had purpose and a plan.
He shunted himself around the country, gathering his world's counterparts of the other Ragnarok's soldiers and infusing them with small increments of his own vast powers. Though 'reborn', the metapowered marauders; Gremlynn, Golden Ghost, Cataclysm, Coalmine, Menagerie, Sapphion, Grotesque, Gemini, Tyrannis Max and Andronicus Omega, were very similar, if not identical to their dimensional twins. Though, these minions' powers were boosted to an even greater level. Once gathered, Ragnarok set his sights on a few more minions. He had discovered that, just like his own counterpart, he could impart godlike powers on victims of his choosing, but, uniquely, he could also drain life-energies and superpowers from victims. He and his generals lay siege to the superhero and supervillain communities of his native Earth in short order. Well-known heroes fell by the dozens!
British powerhouse of extradimensional energies, Steadfast! Electromagnetic celeb heroine, Pristine! Size-changing superheroine, Dollhouse! Superstrong, nigh-invulnerable meta-villain, ThunderLizard! So many more - all dead, their abilities drained to boost and sustain Ragnarok and his vicious generals as the lay waste to city after city, always teleporting out before any proper resistance could befall them!
Soon, it didn't matter anymore. They became so powerful, that they'd decided it was time to end that particular planet. They began in New York City and cut a swath of death and mayhem across the United States like a blade wound.
Superpowered heroes, villains and mercenaries fell like flies. The various police forces and military actions were less than a bother. After over a month of non-stop battle, the battered and scarred, but far from beaten malefactors reached San Francisco, California. Just as the previous Ragnarok did, this reality's teenage god of destruction attacked Alcatraz Island.
Like its counterpart in reality #99101-M, This Ragnarok's native Earth's, (#18182-F), Alcatraz had been re-commissioned as a supervillain prison. UNlike #99101-M, however, this was no detention facility for metahuman first offenders and underaged super-wannabes. THIS reality's Alcatraz held the worst of the worst. Metahuman murderers, domestic terrorists and and full-fledged take-over-the-world villains! None of that mattered. Ragnarok's army literally tore the roof of the place and began siphoning metahuman life energies like a Thanksgiving feast!
He believed that he was now strong enough to put phase two of his plan into action.
When he'd torn the mind of the oracle, Pythia asunder, as he rent her body, he'd seen flashes. Past, present, future and parallel realities. It wasn't very much, but, it had been enough!
Somewhere out there in the vast omniverse, there was a planet Earth unlike any other. A planet Earth overrun with a techno-organic swamp that fed on life energies in much the way he, himself did. If he could find that Earth, if he could connect himself to the root system using his own god magicks, then he could do to entire planets what he'd just done to almost every superhuman on THIS Earth. It wouldn't be swift or easy, but, then, that's why he had an ever-growing army of god-powered minions.
During his siege, Ragnarok had his generals capture, but spare certain metas that he figured he'd have need of. - Teleporters. Reality warpers. Speedsters. Probabilty manipulators. Dimension-hoppers. Those with the very powersets that brought the other Ragnarok low, he would use to bolster his own might.
The Cuckoo. Marathon. The supervillain, Anomaly. Haywire. So many others. Ragnarok violated them with his energies. Turned them into willing slaves, but with less free will than his lieutenants. He called them his Ferrymen. They would more swiftly and easily shunt Ragnarok's forces from dimension to dimension, Earth to Earth and even foreign planet to planet, searching out those who would initiate the next step
-interdimensional cartography and psionic tracking. It took another three months of literally ceaseless searching. Even with god powers, some of the Ferrymen died from lack of sleep or food, but, all-too-soon, the day came that the Dark Godling found his quarry - The planet Earth numbered 86404-F. The Technoswamp.
Ragnarok and his dozens of metahuman god generals, Ferrymen and various cannon fodder descended on the massive soup-orb with a vigor heretofore unseen, even among their zealous number.
Catyclysm used his weather controlling powers in concert with Menagerie's rapport with beasts to try and control the planet from 'inside'. giant oozing swamp. Coalmine tried to assert his will over the still-molten core of the planet. Gremlynn's technopathic skills interfaced with the technological half of the Sapphion and rest did their literal best to beat the planet into submission.
All this was a diversion. It is STILL unknown if the planet was truly sentient, but, this massive attack was just a show - in case it WAS.
Meanwhile, Ragnarok and a single teleporting Ferryman - a poor creature who used to be his native world's version of David Sadler, the superhero once known as LongArm, shunted themselves deep into the bowels of the planet.
It was there that Ragnarok plunged his mighty claws into the very roots of the techno-organic plant that snaked itself around the entirety of this Earth.
Aboveground, the plant tendrils that were busy entangling, devouring and violating Ragnarok's minions went still. The roiling neon green waters ceased their bubbling and tidal waves. The carnivorous insects went still and closed their multiple glowing eyes and seemed to bow to some unseen master.
The earth began to quake slightly as something beneath the ground tunneled its way to the surface. It was Ragnarok. The Demon Godspawn was encased in a translucent bulb. techno-organic leaves and vines snaked inward and outward from his body. It was taking ALL of his vast powers and psionic might to control the immense planetary plant, but, he was doing it. Earth had ceased its attack and was now controlled by its new god. Ragnarok had won his objective.
Sensing the victory, the God Generals lay down their weapons and everyone converged on the monstrous blossom that held their leader.
"What would you have us do next, My Lord?", asked the beefy amazon, Sapphion, who was as close to a second in command as Ragnarok would allow an underling, even before literally subjugation an entire planet.
Ragnarok opened his eyes, now flowing the same sickly, radioactive green color as the ocean of swampwater that all assembled were now standing shin-deep in.
"Now, my children", croaked the God, "You must FEED ME."
The story of how my Universal Destruction got started.
This takes place BEFORE the Universal Destruction stories featuring
The teen heroes of Back To Status Quo
The superheroes of Marital Blitz.
This takes place BEFORE the Universal Destruction stories featuring
The superheroes of Marital Blitz.