Too Late, the Hero

In which our protagonist expounds on a topic long after everyone else has lost interest in it and everything to be said has already been said.

Sit ye down, my friend, and I’m gonna tell you a story. It’s a hum-dinger of a story, filled with action and adventure! However, before we get started, I should tell you a little bit about this story.

First thing you need to know is this: it doesn’t end. This story will have no end. It’ll just keep going on and on. You can walk away from me while I’m telling it, go do something else for a few years, and come back, and I’ll still be telling the story. Or someone else will…in order to tell a story that never ends, we’ll have to get a series of people to tell it. Some will be good — you’ll be riveted to your seat, eager to hear about what comes next. Some, not so good. So bad, in fact, you’ll wonder why you ever cared about this story to begin with. And all of us, the storytellers, we’re making it up as we go, following no set plan for the future and having a fitful regard for the past, so things may not always make the most sense.

In addition to the story that will be told here, next door there’s another story being told, featuring many of the same characters. In fact, this whole street will be telling stories about these characters. Sometimes, to get the whole story, you’ll have to go to other storytellers and hear what they have to add to the plot. Sometimes you’ll have to go a few streets over, to storytellers who aren’t telling stories about these characters, but whose stories suddenly include their adventures. I’m sure you won’t mind the commute.

There’s a couple of main characters here, sure, and a cast of thousands of supporting characters. Sometimes you’ll be expected to remember them in detail, sometimes such memories will only confuse you, as I myself might not be holding to anything that was said before. If something needs changing, it’ll be changed, sometimes with an attempt to explain the inconsistency, but usually not going through the trouble. Like I said, it’s quite possible that when all is said and done, none of this will make any sense, but that really doesn’t matter, since the story will never end.

Why won’t it end? Well, because we’ll just keep going on and on. Our main character will be immune to the effects of aging. He’ll (and rest assured, he will almost certainly be a “he”) be stretched on an infinite rack of time, along with many of the side characters. Though he’ll allegedly be dealing with matters of great planetary and even cosmic import, please don’t let the lack of effect of day-to-day living on him somehow render those matters less important. Sometimes people will die, however, and it’s even possible he himself may die, but don’t think for a moment that will end the story — there’s absolutely nothing permanent about death, so even that threat will be trivialized to a mere inconvenience.

And lastly, every now and then we’ll just plain start the story over. Begin from the beginning, yet again, sometimes changing some details, sometimes keeping everything exactly the same. At those times, everything that came before will be jettisoned, so you’re free to forget about it. Characters you liked, plots you enjoyed, story threads you were waiting to be resolved will all be abandoned for a fresh new look at the same character.

With those caveats out of the way are you ready to start? Excellent. It’ll only cost you three bucks for every five minutes of story.

This entry was posted in Comics. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.