A/N: A brief epilogue to whet your appetites for more to come. This is not finished, by far...
Red Sonja is not quite the same woman as the one who later teams up with Spidey in modern times. For one thing, she's a bit older and more responsible, not as prone to letting her libido run her decisions. Angrier, too.
...we've all been young once.
Outer Earth. The Center. Probably the 40th century.
The man once known as Nathaniel Richards, now known only as Kang the Conqueror, stared at the holomimetic screens, feeling the ages bearing down upon him, the weight of his own actions crushing him. Each timeline, altered. Every thing he did to change things, changed things for the worse. It was as if...
...as if he was cursed, somehow.
He glanced at the far corner. A small Redback spider busily worked on a web there, using a crumpled up piece of flimsiplast to make its characteristic funnel. Like a personal insult to him, as if it wasn't enough that he was watching every single alternate future destroyed by Them.
Raising his hand he fired off a concussive blast, shattering cement and steel. He smirked at the results, until suddenly the tiny spider crawled up from the wreckage and began anew.
As he raised his hand yet again to finish the job, someone cleared their throat behind him.
He whirled abut, ready for a fight, but to his horror he could feel the armor's power-sources cycling down, not up, the joints freezing as they lost energy. He could barely move his head, let alone trigger any of his fail-safes.
"You! How - how did you gain entry to this sanctum?"
Such a smug smirk on her face. Her red and blue armor, that accursed emblem on the breastplate, that helm with the eight-fold sensor arrays looking so much like arachnid eyes...
Agent Gwendolyn-May Parker, great, great, great-granddaughter of Peter Parker and the honorable judge Jennifer Walters, folded all six of her arms and began reciting the list she had memorized for this day.
"Nathaniel Richards, alias Immortus, alias Kang the Conqueror, alias Rama-Tut, Swaath, Scarlet Centurion, Marcus...the list goes on, and we don't have all day. By the authority invested in me by the Timespinner agency, I place you under arrest for multiple infractions of timelines for the purpose of altering, killing and/or conquering. You have the right to remain silent, you have the right to legal counsel, if you cannot afford such counsel one will b appointed to you by the court of Time. Do you understand these rights?"
He sighed. "Yes. Yes, I do. May you and your accursed bloodline burn in the hells of Purgatory forever."
"Now is that any way to talk to someone? Go on, move along, Watch your head there, don't wanna shear the top of your scalp off on the portal edge. God, I love this job...by the way, great-great-great-gramps sent a message to you. Ahem. 'Gotcha.'"
Earth 616. New Jersey. Present day.
"Come on, hurry up, the opening credits are starting!"
Debra Whitman rolled her eyes, shutting off the microwave and pulling out the bag of low-fat popcorn, shaking it firmly between two folded towels to avoid burning her fingers. "There any difference from last week's opening credits?"
"Yeah, looks like a Jon Snow-focused episode or something! Get the popcorn here would-"
There was a crash, and Deb frowned. "You okay?"
She'd moved in with her cousin Sandy a few months back when the book deal fell through. They were somewhat alike, though Sandy, being younger, was more of a party animal and sometimes stayed out way too late. Still, if she'd knocked over a lamp again she'd get an earful.
"Hello?" She walked into the living room, but when she saw what was standing there over the curled up body of her cousin, she screamed.
The creature turned a black-on-black head towards her, and spoke. "You have his scent. You carry his essence. I will take it from you."
In a swift motion born more out of reflex and desperation than anything else Debra flung the bowl of popcorn at the creature, along with the salt shaker. The bowl was batted aside and shattered the window, but when the salt shaker burst open in mid-air and rained down upon it, the creature shrieked in pain and fury. By the time it had flipped over the couch and smashed through the door, she was already running down the street, not bothering to put on shoes or a jacket or anything.
The Shathra flew high above, compound eyes scanning the street below, sensitive olfactory organs tracing the female's pheromones. There. It clicked to itself in triumph and swooped down, stinger at the ready. She had only thought to feed upon it, but now she saw enough of a spark to justify her serving as a host to her children. At least until He could be found.
But as she reached the clumsy human, a bolt of vile spirit energy seared her shoulder harshly enough to set her screaming, followed by another, and another. The Shathra glared at the newcomer below. Another human, his aura thick with sorceries and shielding charms. She hesitated. The meal was getting away! But the sorcerer below was not easy prey. Best not fence with him now, while she was still weakened.
With a contemptuous flip of her wings she turned about in mid-air, flying away with all the speed she could muster. When she had fetched her brother and brought him sacrifice, the two together would find Him and feed mightily. And then she would return to this sorcerer and make him pay.
But not now.
"Are you all right, miss?"
Debra looked up into a bizarre sight, a tall black man dressed in a gaudy mishmash of elegant street wear with jewelery, amulets and good luck charms. His face was painted with a white and red skull insignia, and on his chest rested a glowing amulet in the shape of an eye.
"N-n-no. It-it k-killed my cousin!"
He shook his head. "My brother did not feel anyone passing, girl. She's alive. Now, put this on. It will shield you from the creature, make her unable to find you. Do you two have anywhere else to go?"
She nodded. "Yes. M-my mother, in Michigan."
Doc Voodoo, the Sorcerer Supreme, smiled at her gently. "Well, then. I will protect you while you gather your belongings, and see you to the train station. Come on. She's scared off for now, but it's only a matter of time before she gathers up the courage to strike again."
End of Pt.1
(Stay tuned for Pt.2, coming soon, same fic-space, same fic-channel...)