Against Galactus (story from an alternate time line)
Long it is that men, gods, and cosmic entities have wondered what the result might be if the mighty King Thor were to clash with the great Galactus in unrestrained conflict.
King Thor for his part to draw on the best available resources of Asgard and Galactus to draw on the most powerful combination of heralds he can contrive and the full resources of his gigantic worldship.
It has been given to me, a humble scribe, to witness this clash in an alternate reality and the events leading up to it at first hand. I shall describe these events as best I am able although as a mortal man I do not pretend to fully understand all of the events that transpired.
It is the year 2500 AD as mortal men have chosen to measure time.
Odin is long since dead and King Thor rules wisely over a prosperous Asgard that has known few challenges over the past 500 or so years. Thor has married the Lady Sif, perhaps his greatest love, and the only progeny their son Magni, strongest of all the gods of Asgard, has now flowered into mature adulthood. Orikal the seer, so long imprisoned by King Geirridour of the trolls, now enjoys a trusted position as chief seer to King Thor. Thialfi also has the ear of King Thor, as his trusted principal adviser.
The warriors three continue to enjoy Thors friendship and continue on missions for him, sometimes accompanied by Thialfi and Prince Magni. Orikal's ability to foresee troublesome events is one of the main reasons for Asgard's stability, with Lord Thor able to take forceful action before potential threats get out of hand.
After some 500 years King Thor is no longer inexperienced in the use of the OdinPower, though in truth it is a long time since either he or the armies of Asgard have been seriously tested in battle. Loki has long since given away any aspirations to the throne of Asgard and has been rewarded with Governorship of the colony of New Asgard with substantial autonomy. For a long time there was a falling out between Thor and Magni, but now thanks largely to the efforts of Queen Sif, the old wounds have been healed.
As a youth Magni had been very proud of his great strength and had at one time come into conflict with Earth's mightiest mortal the green behemoth known as the Hulk. In truth Magni had been soundly and badly beaten by the Hulk a much more savage and experienced fighter. The Hulk was capable through sheer rage of equaling and surpassing even Magni's strength.
King Thor's advice was to let the matter rest, but shamed at his defeat Magni could not do so. He sought the aid of the enchantress to heal his wounds and then sought out Thors great belt of strength unused in quite some time. Confronting the Hulk again and even with the belt of strength Magni again began to find an enraged Hulk too much for him. Refusing to be shamed a second time Magni's anger increased until he entered for the first time in his life a state of warrior's madness. Magni then reined blow after blow after blow down upon the Hulk continuing long after the behemoth was unable to provide any effective resistance and eventually killing him.
It was Magni's most shameful moment and an episode that estranged him from his father for a very long time indeed. Still this was a long time ago and many of Earths heroes at the turn of the 21st century had, sadly, gone the way of all mortal flesh. Finally father was reconciled with son and mighty mjolnor one of the greatest weapons known to god or man was passed from father to son. Soon thereafter Thor made another present to Magni, a great suit of armor, forged by the trolls and more durable than anything that had been made in times past for either Thor or Odin.
At one point, early in his reign and briefly unhappy with events on Midgard, Lord Thor considered a major intervention in the affairs of men. But, in this alternate reality, this was no more than a passing thought which Thor quickly dismissed. "It is not our place to do so" said Queen Sif. Thor did however extended Asgard's dominion by the creation of three new colonies in neighboring pocket dimensions, each of a size similar to Continental Asgard. These were New Odin, New Baldur, and New Asgard. Each new colony seemed more verdant and more fertile than even Asgard itself.
Thus all did indeed seem well with Asgard and its colonies.
But quite suddenly and unexpectedly all contact via the dimensional bridge between Asgard and the colony of New Odin was lost. This surprised King Thor as, though busy with matters of State, he had no premonition of trouble and received no warning of impending trouble from either Orikal or other valued sources such as Loki and Thialfi.
Without delay Thor sought out his chief Seer, Orikal, who advised "for the first time Milord Thor in half a millennium I am unable to clearly foresee events about New Odin or indeed Asgard itself, I cannot understand this." Thor then made audio-visual contact with Loki in New Asgard who had also been unable to contact the New Odin colony and similarly could shed no light on the reasons for the matter.
"I shall have to teleport interdimensionally to New Odin myself" mused Thor "though the dimensional bridge has failed surely no power can prevent my own personal teleportation." At that precise instant and at a speed that few, if any, in Asgard, could match Thialfi arrived from a mission near New Baldur. " Lord Thor " yelled Thialfi "there are reports, unsubstantiated as yet, that Galactus himself has been seen in the vicinity of New Odin and with two new heralds both unknown to observers."
" Galactus" cried a deeply worried Queen Sif "He has not been seen or heard of in hundreds of years, why does he come this way now ?"
" I shall soon find out" bellowed King Thor but before he depart for the colony of New Odin , Sif and Thialfi counseled against it. "It may be some kind of trap Milord Thor" said Thialfi "ought you to send others to seek out the true state of affairs ?"
"Aye, perhaps so" said King Thor "I will have my ravens investigate, but swiftly." "As you know I have granted them powers additional to those provided by Odin and now there is almost nowhere they cannot go and they are almost impossible to detect."
As he impatiently awaited the return of his ravens and anticipating the worst Thor walked down a set of winding steps and toward a heavily locked room, opening the shackles with a flick of his fingers. In front of him lay a sight he had not seen for a great many years one of Asgard's greatest weapons – the dread Destroyer construct. Many years after the death of Odin, all skyfathers had acceded to a request from Lord Thor to further enhance the capabilities of the Destroyer. These increased capabilities had not as yet been tested on the field of battle.
Through his ravens and through other means King Thor determined that Galactus accompanied by two previously unknown heralds had used some adaptation of the ultimate nullifier to remove the Asgardian Colony of New Odin from any known plane of existence. Indeed the former existence of New Odin had been effectively erased from the minds of almost all in the cosmos who knew of it , save a select few, close to the truth revealing powers of Lord Thor. Anticipating and indeed planning for some form of massive retaliation from King Thor Galactus retired with his heralds to the densely populated core of a distant galaxy. There he started to feed to excess.
A member of the race of Watchers after briefly observing events in Asgard was summarily dismissed by King Thor and teleports to observe Galactus.
" If Galactus has done this to New Odin " said Queen Sif "then what is to stop him doing the same to New Baldur, new Asgard or even Asgard itself ?"
"I believe I have divined his intentions" said King Thor "and had I not been so occupied with affairs of State I would have detected his approach and dealt with him" " Let no blame attach to Orikal, Heimdall, Loki or others as the world devourer's machinations were beyond their capacity to divine." " If there be any blame, let it lay with me"
" Yet know thee all this" continued the Lord of Asgard and its colonies " that with the power that is available to me nothing is beyond redemption, no events are ever truly set in concrete."
" If it is games that Galactus would play, then he should remember that I am my fathers son" said Thor "and surely when it came to schemes within schemes and wheels within wheels there were none better than Odin" "Except now, perhaps me" smiled Thor.
Meanwhile Magni, rendered asleep by Lord Thor, for fear of his taking precipitate action against Galactus, dreamed on. His dreams were filled with his two battles with the Hulk when he was but a callow youth. He had long since realised that as a mature adult he would be far too much for the Hulk, had the behemoth lived. As an adult he would never have needed either the belt of strength or warriors madness to defeat the Hulk. Magni dreamed also of the great suit of armor that had been built for him but which he had not yet used. He had heard his father hint sometimes of its wondrous powers. Indeed, in recent times, Magni had begun to sense a latent power in himself far beyond anything he would have once thought possible.
Complying with Thor's earlier instructions Loki returned to the throne room with the Destroyer Construct and also with Hogun the Grim. " I have oft wondered Lord Thor" said Loki "just exactly what refinements you and your fellow skyfathers made to the Destroyer" "I shall not tell you all" said Thor "for ee'n I am not exactly certain of the telepathic and observational reach of Galactus." "We should be well shielded here in Asgard but best to be certain."
" I will say though" continued Thor "that our modifications have been based on all past experience with the Destroyer, especially in the engagement with the Celestial fourth host." "We have learned from our past mistakes !" " Will you yourself enter the Destroyer construct" asked Loki "or leave this to others ?" " Even that must remain a secret just for the nonce " said Lord Thor.
"We should discuss what is known of the world devourer's new heralds' said Heimdall "I sensed they were of fundamentally different natures, almost diametrically opposed."
" I have reached out" even as we speak said Thor "and it doth seem they have some connection with the Celestials – mutated or some form of hybrid Celestial spawn."
" Their different natures are deliberateness on Galactus part" continued Thor "one tends to balance the other and never would they ever join against their master." "Yet they are more powerful and more versatile than any of Galactus past heralds by another order of magnitude and as such cannot be discounted." " I believe that Galactus ultimate goal is to acquire the essence of the Thor/Odin power" said Thor "with this power added to his own he perceives he can reshape reality and will be a completely unstoppable force." Finally said Thor "Galactus also desires the prize of the Earth including the elder goddess and Earth Mother Gaea which he will take at a whim once he has acquired the Thor/Odin power."
Galactus heralds were two Celestial brothers acquired at birth when Galactus used a form of the ultimate nullifier on their Celestial birth cocoon. Galactus did not immediately apprise the brothers of their Celestial origins and also left evidence for the Celestial race that the brothers had died at birth. They are known as Shirom the headstrong and Alaim the thinker and of the two Shirom is decidedly more powerful and more loyal to Galactus.
" Should the need arise" said Thor "we may seek to exploit their differences."
"Our greatest concern" continued Thor "is not so much Galactus himself as his adaptation of the ultimate nullifier, and even of the potential use of the original nullifier should he discover my plans for him." "Now, all but Hogun, leave me for the moment" continued Thor "as what I have to say next is for his ears alone."
A confident Galactus continued to feed far beyond his normal requirements while his almost diametrically opposed heralds continued to bicker. Taking a break from his feeding the great Galactus returned to his Worldship, there to utilize his vast technologies to learn more of Lord Thors intentions. To his consternation Galactus was largely unable to breach Asgard City's mental defences and he could only discern snippets of information. Still confident, even if slightly less so, Galactus left his Worldship to continue feeding."
'He is no longer a mere godling, but a mature god of vast power" mused Galactus "but in the end how can he possibly triumph against me, the great Galactus, am I not power incarnate and have I not laid the perfect plans for Thors utter defeat ?"
With that a huge audio-visual image of King Thor appeared dwarfing even Galactus Worldship " I have perfectly foreseen your intentions Galactus and know now that you will not succeed " " Return the New Odin colony and its inhabitants now to it's rightful place and leave our Universe never to return ! "
Awaiting the imminent arrival of Lord Thor, Galactus via his worldships computer, re-programmed Alaim the thinker to full Celestial might but devoid of any resistance to Galactus purpose (a pure fighting machine).. Galactus believed also he had divined from Alaim how to defeat Lord Thor and acquire the coveted Thor/Odin power.
The other herald Shirom had awakened refreshed and also ready to combat Lord Thor. Shirom held an adaptation of the ultimate nullifier ready to fire on Lord Thor. Galactus worldship defences were also on full alert. Following shortly after an audio-visual image warning to Galactus, King Thor appeared in all his might and majesty before the world devourer and his two Celestial level heralds..
Witnessing the majestic sight of the Lord of all Asgard, Galactus had second thoughts and, perhaps for the first time in all of his long existence, experiences a sense of fear.
Seemingly not far behind King Thor was Thialfi carrying the destroyer armour construct in Thors chariot drawn along by Toothgnasher and Toothgrinder. Also close at hand was the mighty Magni now wearing his specially made armour and carrying the hammer of Magni (once known as the hammer of Thor).
This was the first time Magni had worn the armor crafted only for him but as soon as he donned it the armor seemed to flow around him fitting snugly like a glove. Reassuringly durable yet very light, Magni found that he was immediately familiar with all of the armours many and vast powers which complemented his own nigh immeasurable might.
However even at the moment of his arrival on the battlefield Lord Thor had already struck a masterful first blow against his adversaries. Moments before Lord Thors arrival, Thailfi in the Destroyer Armor had momentarily frozen time about Galactus and his heralds and in a "stealth" form both invisible and undetectable he retrieved the adapted ultimate nullifier from Shirom..
Immediately thereafter the Thialfi Destroyer "phased" through the outer shell of Galactus worldship. With knowledge voluntarily supplied by the Silver Surfer the Thialfi Destroyer quickly overcome the ships internal defences and destroyed all of its control systems. The Thialfi Destroyer easily breached any armoured partitions and internal force fields protecting areas within the ship. Although not immediate this had the additional effect of slowly reversing Alaim's de-programming.
As a result of the improvements made to the Destroyer Construct in more recent times Thialfi in the Destroyer, was able to retain the speed of his own physical body thus completing all tasks in the mere moments during which time is frozen about Galactus.
With the worldship now rendered useless and the nullifier removed from them, Galactus and his two Celestial level heralds confronted King Thor, Thialfi in the Destroyer Armor and the newly arrived Prince Magni. Loki attended in astral form, to observe and render what assistance he could. Thor, Magni and the Thialfi/Destroyer mystically assumed the same size as Galactus and his heralds.
Furious at the way he had been outmanouvered Galactus and his heralds concentrated their attack on what they perceive as the weak link in the Asgardian triumvariate.- Thialfi in the Destroyer construct. Possibly they also targeted the Destroyer in hope of recovering the nullifier. For a moment inconceivably vast cosmic energies crackled around a construct that was originally designed to battle Celestials and which had been further enhanced for that purpose.
However before the attack could gather any real momentum King Thor and Magni combined to hit Galactus with two short duration controlled god blasts. Such an attack would have killed a normally fed Galactus but in his currently overfed state they simply stunned him forcing him to break off the engagement. Alaim the thinker, though uninjured, paused uncertainly as his de-programming began to lose its effect and he broke off his attack.
The battle then recommenced with all adversaries engaged in a wild melee and with no definite pattern of attack from either side. At one point the Celestial level heralds hurled nearby uninhabited planets and planetoids at the Asgardian trio but these were either avoided or vaporised. The only forms of attack held in reserve were the Destroyers disintegration weapon and sustained godblasts by Thor and Magni. In all other respects the conflict was unrestrained..
Thialfi was all too aware that once the disintegrator was used it would take time for the energies to build again atop the disintegrator visor.
The results of the melee were inconclusive, although Loki, even though only in astral form, was hurt by Galactus and left the field of battle.
"To defeat these heralds" mused Thor "I shall appeal to the true nature of Alaim as the effects of his de-programming unwind and test his loyalty to both Galactus and his brother Shirom." Thor appeals to Alaim "Now that you know the truth of matters why do you still follow Galactus ?." "Do not listen to him my child" intoned Galactus "he seeks only to divide us and to set you against your brother." Alaim, ever the thinker, and with his de-programming continuing to unwind found himself questioning his master and his masters motives.
Overcome with anger at the lack of loyalty of his brother and fellow herald and to the despair of Galactus, Shirom the headstrong turned on Alaim the thinker enjoined him in battle.
The Agardian trio seized this moment of discord among the Celestial level heralds and hit them full on with all their vast arsenal. Magni's godly essence joined not only with the innate energies within his armor but with the power of the hammer supreme. At Magni's direction these energies flowed out toward the warring heralds joined in turn by a sustained god-blast from King Thor and the energies flowing from the Destroyers disintegration visor.
Is there anyone who would doubt that this combination – godblasts from Lord Thor and Prince Magni and disintegration thrusts from the Destroyer construct are ultimately the best that Asgard has to offer ? If an attack of this magnitude were to fail, what more then could truly be brought to bear ?
For a moment the Celestial level heralds locked in combat among them selves look on in bewilderment at the energies pouring against them. But it was, in fact, merely a moment as both heralds succumbed and were reduced to smouldering slags of Celestial armor. Even Galactus, not directly attacked, was thrust aside by the sheer force of the onslaught,
" Should we have saved Alaim" enquired Prince Magni of his father "he seemed totally different to his fellow herald ?" "Best to be certain" responded Lord Thor "no active herald of Galactus can ever truly be trusted."
"So, great Galactus" said King Thor "it has come down to the two of us" "You are denied the resources of your Worldship, your nullifier and your heralds." "I, in turn choose not to be aided either by the incomparable Magni or the Thialfi Destroyer." "Your time has come Galactus" said Thor "your ravaging of worlds without number to assuage your unassuagable hunger comes to its end here and now" " The suffering of unknown trillions of innocent living beings will be avenged !"
"Have at thee Galactus" cried Thor as he leapt at Galactus engaging him hand to hand.
With the two titans firmly locked in battle awesome energies crackled about their massive forms and, even at such close quarters, both launched powerful eye blasts against each other. Their fists were balled and surrounded by colossal amounts of coruscating energies as neither seemed to be able to land a truly telling blow. As their struggle continued the two adversaries increased in size each matching the other, first to Exitar Class Celestial size then far, far beyond this.
" At close quarters and with us of equal size he is stronger than I would have thought" mused Thor. "but there can be no doubt as to the ultimate outcome of this battle," "This can only end one way son of Odin" said Galactus "for I am Galactus and I am power incarnate – even one such as you must fall before me ! "
As if to give the lie to his vainglorious boast Galactus, even as he fought, sought to draw (without the aid of his converter apparatus) nourishment from nearby worlds.
Magni quickly stepped in to ensure that Galactus was denied this source of energy.
Straining to his utmost Lord Thor cried out "you have foolishly accepted my choice to battle you in physical/energy close quarter combat." "In this area you are at best inexperienced while millenia of hand to hand battle experience runs through my veins." With that Thor broke free of Galactus's and landed the first of many telling blows.
With each blow the great Galactus seemed to grow just a little smaller in stature and Thor responded by decreasing his own size. Also with each blow, part physical part energy attack, Galactus seemed just a little less able to defend himself. In due course the contestation became most unequal and Galactus began to diminish rapidly in size.
"Where will it end ?" mused Prince Magni "when will my father decide to stop ?"
And indeed soon thereafter Prince Magni's question was answered as Lord Thor did cease his onslaught. But for Galactus the process was now irreversible. His diminution in size (in the absence of any incoming reviving energy) continued apace until he died a mere husk of the mortal man once known as Galan.
" What of Galactus worldship " asked the Thialfi Destroyer "which currently lies totally disabled ?"
"It is a testament to all that Galactus represented" said Lord Thor "it was an instrument in the orgy of destruction and the taking of untold lives and as such it must be completely destroyed." With that and given that sufficient energies had again built up atop its disintegration beam visor the Thialfi Destroyer again opened its disintegration visor and the result was a foregone conclusion. The worldship of Galactus simply ceased to exist.
"And New Odin" said Magni "via the adapted nullifier it was simply displaced in time" said Lord Thor. " to a time before the existence of the Norse Gods when Crom himself dids't prevail".
"I am somewhat weakened by our encounters here, but if you will both conjoin with me now, I am sure our combined powers will be more than sufficient to return New Odin and its populace to its rightful place in space and time.
And it was so.