Low sank his tooth-filled maw into the blonde Green Lantern's chest, and The Raggedy Man watched in awe as the Guardian of Sector 3333 shriveled to a dry husk within seconds. Having only recently 'joined' The Sinestro Corps, and even more recently been sent as a partner to Low in Sector 3308, he was still 'green'. Low turned toward him, a tall, well-muscled, blue-skinned humanoid leech with a face that consisted of a round, fanged maw ringed by a series of almost undetectable eyes. Sentients called him "The Most Dangerous Parasite in the Universe", but Raggedy Man knew that Low was no parasite, he was a voracious predator through and through.
What most people, even other members of The Sinestro Corps, did not realize was the fact that Low was not a male. Nor was 'he' a female. 'He' was a hermaphroditic, self-fertilizing walking leech. He placed his fertile eggs within the corpses of his victims, to hatch and feed on the desiccated remains and go on to wreck terror in their 'father's' image.
Of course, his mind was far beyond that of a simple leech, beyond that of many sentients throughout the galaxy. But all most sentients saw was a simple, murderous brute.
Which was exactly what Low wanted them to think.
Low looked down at the shriveled corpse that even now nurtured his eggs. He headed toward the surface of the nearest world, The Raggedy Man following close behind, and landed on the outskirts of a large city. His children would have plenty of food.
Low regarded his partner, a human-like alien swathed from head to toe in streaming yellow rags. A featureless mask covered his face, meant to increase his fearsome appearance, it worked, but only because his true face inspired no fear, other humanoids actually found him attractive. It didn't matter to Low, they all looked alike to him, anyway. The Raggedy Man was crazy as a Korugarian blue fly, but at least he was tolerable company. When he had learned that he was being saddled with a sector partner, Low was worried that Sinestro would send that/those three-faced imbecile(s?) Maash. Low couldn't bear the thought of spending an extended period of time with that/those gibbering idiot(s?). The top head was always screaming and the bottom two always cursing and laughing. He'd have put them out of his misery, 'Sinestro's Might' be damned...
"How long until they hatch?" The Raggedy Man had a soft, cultured voice.
"Two or three light cycles." Low's voice was a hollow grinding sound from deep within his long, segmented neck. He started to leave.
Low turned, his 'face' unreadable.
"What if they are discovered before they hatch? The Green Lanterns will be searching for their friend..."
"Then they will die."
Raggedy Man was stunned, "You mean, you don't care if they live or die?"
"Let me put it this way, in most species' disgusting mating rituals, one mate releases thousands of larvae into the other, correct?"
"But out of those thousands, only one or two enter the egg, all the others die. If all survived they would devour all available food sources and all would die anyway. It is the way of life, impersonal, remote and filled with fear and death."
At Sector 3308 Sinestro Corps Station:
"Tell me about your people, Low." Raggedy Man pulled a bottle of fine wine from his stash and took up a glass.
Low gave the equivalent of a snort.
"Really, I would like to know about them." Raggedy Man removed his mask, revealing golden skin with delicate features, copper hair and deep purple eyes that burned with the madness that had drawn the Yellow Power Ring to him. He had no problem removing his mask in Low's presence, as Low believed all 'humanoids' looked alike, hideous.
Low sat at the table, he could smell the wine with his keen senses, and it was disgusting. Nothing like the sweet, salty scent of blood... "My people travel in swarms from world to world, seeking food. A swarm would be made up of all the surviving hatchlings from a particular area."
"Then, you have some form of 'Racial Memory'?"
"We are hatched knowing all that we need to know to survive."
"How do you travel from planet to planet?"
"We use the ships of the races we've conquered. Those spawned on primitive worlds simply remain there."
"Sentients throughout our galaxy fear our arrival as a plague. Because of this some swarms have become cowardly, landing in secret and preying upon non-sentients, or, worse, buying victims from lesser races! They believe that if we are not feared, we will not be hated. Fools! Humanoids find us as repulsive as we find them, and will attack us regardless. I tried to show my people the way... I boldly stormed the greatest cities of other races, fed upon their leaders and champions. But my people!" He uttered a strange, rasping hiss, "They refused to follow me. I am strong, but I am only one being. The races allied themselves against us, and those soft fools were slaughtered. The ones wise enough to fight back or escape blamed me for the devastation! If they had joined with me, we would have been victorious! Instead they cowered and died..." Despite his lack of facial features, Low was visibly enraged, his four-taloned fist came down upon the table, "They betrayed me, went cringing to the lesser races, offered me to our enemies in the name of 'Peace' and 'Justice'! That was when the yellow ring found me..."
The Raggedy Man shook his head, "All great leaders are unappreciated by the masses. Towards the end of my reign, I could not trust anyone. I had no servants, only the beings I created to protect me. There were assassins everywhere..." He looked at the yellow ring on his hand, "I made my people fear me, I thought it would protect me. But I was too successful, fear turned to hate and hate turned to outright rebellion..." He tapped the metal tips of his sharpened finger rings idly on the table. "Fear is a powerful weapon, but it is also a double-edged sword. It must be wielded with precision and finesse as well as with force."
"I would rather have a blaster than a sword."
Raggedy Man sighed, "The difference between us, I suppose. Still, an iron fist within a silken glove... As long as the job gets done, right?."
Low indicated his assent, "Whatever makes Sinestro happy, Keeps us alive..."
If Low's background has been revealed in canon, I haven't found it, and I would honestly like to know his back story. So if anyone knows, please leave the issue number in comments. Thanks!
The Green Lantern assigned to Sector 3333 is Penn Maricc. He is a blond man with a beard with a reputation as a braggart. I chose him to die because he has the closest listed Sector to Sector 3308. It was nothing personal to any fans he might have.
Maash is/are actually triplets, sharing one body with the three faces stacked on top of each other. The top face is 'innocent' while the other two are vicious murderers. Guess who controls the body. Low and Maash came as an interchangeable figure, so I thought it funny to have them hate each other.
They're was a DC character called 'The Raggedy Man', an inmate of Arkham Asylum who murdered children with can openers and was forced to kill himself in the same manner. He was created by David Hine in Arkham Reborn #1. I wrote this story before I knew of that Raggedy Man, and this is most certainly not the same character. He is also not The Scarecrow.
He's partly based on Hastur, The King in Yellow, from the Cthulhu Mythos. He actually is a former king. Due to a childhood trauma, he is so incredibly paranoid that he believes almost everyone is an assassin out to get him, including Sinestro. The only people he trusts are Low (Because he's so utterly alien) and, for some reason, Kryb. (Probably out of sympathy for her dead children.) He's a good swordsman (He makes swords out of Fear Light Energy) and a martial artist, but he scares easily, and when he's scared, he goes berserk. He's not strong, but he's fierce and unpredictable. He creates monsters using DNA from the only person he knows he can always trust, himself.
They use the term 'humanoid' even though neither character is human simply because I can't think of a non-ethnocentric term. Perhaps 'Daxamitoid' or 'Kurogarianoid'...
Low was created by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis
Penn Maricc was created by Mindy Newell and George Freeman
Kryb and Maash were created by Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver
All are copyrighted DC Comics