CHAPTER 1

There is a legend on the planet Krypton.

A fairy tale, told at night to frighten children.

It speaks of a monster….

There once was an old man, who lived in the Outer Lands, and who hated all things both good and alive. He wished to bring an end to life. But to do so, he must first create life. Mixing stone, and blood, and air, the old man gave birth to a monster.

Its name was Doomsday.

Doomsday used its first breath to kill the old man, who took with him the secret of the monster, and the formula of unmaking. Doomsday came unto the living, and caused much sadness. Death followed, springing up like black flowers around its every step, washing over whole cities like a tidal wave of poison and blood.

Even the stars cried for the children of Krypton.

But one star took pity. The great god Rao, king of the stars, sent down a gift. His very daughter.

A beautiful young girl, with heart of diamond and skin of steel, whose very hair was like spun gold, stood up to the monster. Doomsday chased her and chased her, through frozen fields and fiery forests.

And as the monster was distracted with this chase, the people of Krypton fashioned a prison, an unbreakable tomb from which there was no escape. For the planet Krypton itself would form the walls of the cage.

At last, when it was time, the girl led the monster into the trap, escaping at the last moment, just before the door was closed, as a beam of yellow sunlight.

The terror was over. Death incarnate had been tricked. The monster-god caged.

But still, the creature lives, and waits, lost and bound at the center of the planet. And every time the ground quakes beneath our feet, that is Doomsday, trying to escape. That is the death of worlds, drawing closer.

And so we must pray to Rao, every day, for our prayers keep the Devil in his Hell. For as long as the planet Krypton survives, the people of the universe are safe from Doomsday…

The creature awakens to darkness, and finds itself floating amid the glittering green remains of the planet that had been its prison.

At first, it moves. Simple movement after an eternity of captivity.

Thrashing, swinging, tearing apart the airless void around it. Its terrifying roar is silent, but vents the murderous rage within just the same.

After movement, comes confusion. There is nothing surrounding, except light.

Dead and empty space, under a cold red sun.

The irony escapes it. Its job is done. Krypton is gone. The people dead.

But the creature knows this, instinctively.

A sense of emptiness creeps into its being, as vast and void as the universe.

It is all alone, with nothing to kill.

What else is there without the hunt? The blood of the enemy?

Time passes. An hour or a century. It matters not, as the creature orbits the red sun, drifting amid the broken corpse of a dead world.

But then…!

A hint… A taste… Like blood in water.

Twisting its body to gain traction on a nearby stone, the creature launches itself into the cosmos, tearing free from orbit, and leaping from one piece of space-debris to another, following a zigzag path towards the source.

It is like a wound in time and space. Something had broken the bonds of reality on this spot, the creature can tell, as it comes to rest at last before a yawning, still bleeding gap in the fabric of reality.

A vehicle, a ship, a rocket.

It "smells" of prey.

The satisfying sense of rage returns, and with it, purpose. The creature was bred to destroy. To hunt down and kill every last Kryptonian in existence. And now it can.

As the blood-lust rises, the creature leaps into the artificial space warp, and is instantly, blindingly, travelling beyond the speed of light, falling along the same trail etched into the stars by its prey's ship.

A youngling, it knows. But time has passed. By now a man. A soldier, perhaps. A warrior.

It matters not. The creature has found its prey.

Doomsday is coming…!