Disclaimer: All familiar characters belong to DC or Marvel. I own Farrah/Persiana and Leon/Crisis.
Chapter 1: A New Struggle
Loki was the god of mischief. Having had his fill of being a woman and confusing his enemies, it was time the son of the frost giant returned to his more masculine form, to further vex his enemies, and his brother Thor. The adopted son of Odin was in a dark dimension on Asgard, staring into a pool of water. This pool was actually a sort of magical window; a way to observe events that were happening on Midgard. Since discovering this new region of Midgard, and these new heroes, Loki had been delighted to find that many in the realm regarded him as a myth and not real. This served his plans well; who could attribute a myth to causing real destruction? Everyone would be blaming the other for the misfortune caused, yet no one would know it was indeed Loki. The idea suited the trickster god well, and he would enjoy making mortals suffer with his mischievous pranks.
At present, he was watching a realm called Apokalips. The hellish planet reminded Loki of the fires of Surtur and, Loki watched the turmoil on the planet. Pain and suffering were a way of life on the wastes of Apokalips, all with the intent of serving a being known as Darkseid. Darkseid has since long been imprisoned in the sensory matrix field generator. Now, a struggle was occurring on the planet as to who would be the next ruler, and numerous factions were fighting for control. (1)
Loki looked about many of the factions, from Granny Goodness, the headmistress of the Female Furies, to Grayven, the illegitimate son of Darkseid, to numerous rebel forces looking to take control and liberate the people from any sort of tyranny. However, one being that caught Loki's eye was that of Mantis.
Mantis was a New God, much like his brethren. However, he was an ego-maniac that was as powerful as Darkseid and could easily have challenged him for leadership. He was a New God capable of altering the molecular structure of matter, and even disintegrate it with a touch of anti-matter. Though highly intelligent and crafty, Mantis was politically weak and could not muster a lot of support. Darkseid had Desaad build a special prison to contain Mantis, but Loki saw an opportunity. The god of mischief rubbed his hands evilly,
"Oh, this will be perfect. The thing I need to vex Thor and the mortals of Midgard forever!"
With that, he disappeared in a brilliant light.
Mantis was not liked by many on Apokalips, but Darkseid allowed him to further his megalomania as long as it did not deter from the ruler's attempts to find the Anti-Life Equation. Mantis, believing himself to be the supreme New God, had attempted to destroy New Genesis by mutating the insect colonies and turning them on Highfather. However, Highfather forced the insects and Mantis to return to Apokalips and proceeded to decimate several of Darkseid's forces. Darkseid was displeased with this, but, knowing that Mantis was possibly the only life form that was not affected by the Omega beams, had Mantis banished to the deepest, darkest level of the hellish planet, a place even the Furies and Granny Goodness dare not go. It was within this prison that a horrible creature lurked down there, a creature that could unleash his mental abilities on a victim and trap them within their own mind. It was here that Mantis, the megalomaniac, was attempting to keep his distance. Thanks to his insane mind, it was difficult for the creature to get a solid lock, but, it was only a matter of time. Mantis had barely slept or eaten since his confinement, but, it was taking his toll. Soon, it would not matter how insane he was; Mantis would be subject to the deranged creature's appetite for sadism.
Currently, Mantis was hiding in a corner, attempting to find a way out. Loki hovered in the air,
"Greetings, foolish mortal."
The New God glared at the Asgardian deity,
"How dare you address me as a foolish mortal! I am Mantis, the most powerful of the New Gods! I would dare to challenge Darkseid himself if he were still alive!"
"You are convinced he is dead? Pity. For all your power, you have yet to escape from your own prison. I wonder, though if it was a waste of my time to even appear here."
The trickster loved playing this game. He would appear, and then seemingly disappear as he was about to help some deranged soul. Mantis said,
"Wait, I need help! You must help me!"
The adopted son of Odin asked,
"And, why should I help you? What could you possibly offer me that I would want?"
Mantis shook his head,
"Name your price. It will be anything you desire."
"Very well. If I help you escape, will you destroy the Justice League and my accursed brother Thor?"
Mantis had heard of the League and how they vexed him many times. If he escaped and destroyed the League, then, everyone on Apokalips would be worshiping him as they did Darkseid. A twisted, insane grin appeared on Mantis' face as he said,
"Yes! I shall!"
Loki snapped his fingers and, in a flash, they both disappeared. They found themselves on Earth and Loki explained,
"The League will not be easy to defeat, Mantis. They are many, and you are but one."
"I do not need help! I am more powerful than Darkseid, and I shall defeat them all single-handedly!"
With that, he flew off.
Little did either one of them realize that a dark force was watching the events unfold…
Mantis attempts a confrontation with the Justice League, but runs into Crisis first. Stay tuned, fellow readers!