I'm taking a break from teaching for the next two weeks. I figure that because school is out maybe I can have a little fun and write a few short stories to post here. This one I wrote a little while back. I hope you enjoy it!
There's not much I can do anymore to inspire them. What is there to do when peace time has suffocated crime. I never realized how much I depended on them, my villains. But that's the business.
I took my coat off the peg and walked out of my office. Looking around most of the staff was off, on account of the war and all. The day of victory was still sublimating in the quarters that haven't gotten the best morsels of the story yet. We won, but I lost. Who does Master Rich fight when there isn't a Nazi around swinging his weight? My partner Steve told me that it was over. Time to get a desk job and slough off the mortal coil. Get in while the GIs are still out. He went to Pennsylvania somewhere. Took a position entering data on these punch cards they say the code breaking machines used during the war. All I want to do is write comics.
I remember the way they looked at me when I told them that Master Rich was going to team up with Modern Marvel, take the war home with Kraut Terror at their heels ready to strike. It was a good issue. Sold almost 12 thousand copies on the east coast, and more on the west. They never really got much of the war. They were too busy not fighting one. The Japs gave their GIs a run for their money. It was romantic like our fight, the good one.
I left the Gothic archway of my corporate center shivering, looking for a cigarette in my pocket. It gets so cold here now, not like it was in the Depression. Back then we could open a fire hydrant and go nuts. With rationing over, I think people will start driving again. We'll have to walk into our homes, turn on the TV and stop living again. Lucy down the street didn't care much for it. Her life was the radio. I still can hear the low-fi humming in my ear, and the crackle of the vinyl. Master Rich had a player in his home too. I remember issue 14 when he had to steal a vacuum tube from it to open his secret door to his lair. Mad Martha stole it the previous issue, and while they were searching his house, he secretly went in and took it out. He was able to get into his private reserve after all. He kicked down the door and blew her away. At least that's how it went down in my head. I can't kill anyone on paper. The Authority doesn't take kindly to that.
Don't know what to do anymore without the Nazis. They were the best. Foreign and organized doesn't get much better than that. It's orientalism at it's finest, especially when they can hide in a crowd. Comics have no future without them. As I take a nickle out of my pocket and hand it over to the newsman I take up the paper, look to the sky, and wonder if he's up there, flying around, Master Rich I mean. He was always a flyer, all the way back in issue #1.
To Be Continued