Member Fiction Rewrite of Chapter 3 - State Unrestful; Ugly, Ugly Peace

It had been a long, hard journey (through the Unigret booth) into day. And this day began with a long, hard early morning parade in my honor, Unigret regrets or not.

Only the mathematical guru of the 23rd-century Glaxo-Nembutal cluster--Riemann Russell Eigenvalue--would have possessed sufficient mental moxie to calculate the infinitesimally low odds predicting the proximity of the Unigret outlet and the parade headwaters (two staggers and a blind stumble), but that's how the flexisphere bounces. Two fins, three flippers, and a velvety-soft claw hoisted my groggy frame onto the back of a StudeOldsmoPackard convertisaucer, which carried me in a stately glide down a spectator-packed McCain Lane. Since speech wasn't necessary, I simply activated my Formal Ceremony subroutine--which assumed control of my right hand in the same way a hot frying pan assumes control over a freshly sundered frog's leg--providing the balance of my cerebrocircuitry a well-deserved rest.

After an uneventful parade--only 15 shots were fired during the course of our 400-meter run--five more exceptionally soft claws escorted me back to the Un-Unigret Recovery Capsule. There I spent the rest of the day in sweet, sweet comatosity.

The night of the parade was a special night, even for my uniquely unspecial home galaxy. It wasn't as if the citizens of the Earth I'd saved a hundred times needed to reread the series of e-books that had thoroughly and accurately reported my every triumph. Indeed even the e-illiterate loved me. (And on occasion, perhaps under the influence of Venusian pollen cider, I'd loved a few of them back.) No. On this evening, my deservedly reknown exploits were overshadowed by the events at hand. Tonight was the galactic peace celebration: An event perhaps even more glorious than the Zorbiforic Duodnous parades of Persii Omicon 7!

After three hundred million years of warring, Peace had finally settled across the nebulae. It was all thanks to one man. Not just a man, really, but a legend among legends of men. A host of grandeur and humility previously unimagined in the entirety of the history of any world, moon, or spit of rock aspiring to moon status. Prophecy hadn't imagined a love for a man as all-encompassing as this. (The prophets were as wrong as astrologers, although both had better batting averages than those suffocatingly smug psychometerologists.) The time and the man had come, and his name was Tek Jansen, and that man with that name was me.

"This is nice," I said to a man with eight heads, one moderately hard claw, and a heart of unusually high gold content, "But is this really appropriate?"

He mistook my disappointment for humility, or at least said the head that did the talking. "You are too modest, Mr. Jansen."

"Mister?" I chortled in surprise/disgust. "My father isnít here, friend. Call me Ambassador Jensen."

Earths and pseudo-Earths from near and far, far away had gathered to pay homage. I insisted no gifts be brought, for as a champion of Men, I already had everything I could have ever imagined to want, which was only the simple beauty of Peace and Democracy.

I asked nothing more. But the party was nice, even if a little less garish than expected. It was something I accepted. And though it was the grandest shindig that any hypercephalopod in the entirety of All Known Universes could have imagined, I didn't participate in it for my own edification. I wasn't about that. I did it for the People, the Real Patriots, the Heroes of Known Existence, and even for some of that God-Damned Sentient Algae I could never clear from my own pond. I allowed the party for all of Them.

I was a seasoned veteran of war (and not just the literal kind). I had championed environmental rights and whole-solar system deforestation simultaneously--on opposite hands--while holding back masses of escaped insane-asylum inmates while acting as a diplomat to settle the Nodholquar-Lihiddy wars of Andromeda. I routinely put every appendage to the best of all possible uses as I routinely juggled the worst of all possible scenarios on the grandest possible stage. In short, I was Pan-Panglossian. If the Heroes refused to forget that, more power to them. And me.

The Galactic Front of Sentient Worlds expected me to resolve it all as if by magic. If I may brag for a moment, I did not disappoint.

"So this is the parade to honor me?" I asked from beneath my signature cocked eyebrow.

A fluttering sound brushed by and a winged wind maiden lit beside me. "Your Peace stretches the distance of the planet, Ambassador Jansen, and it will linger for many years."

More than 12.7 kilograms of mass could not have been packed into her whole 1.576 meters of sumptuous, golden glittering height. "Call me Tek."

She blushed an attractive shade of emerald green while her wings pattered in a way that made me think she was going to pop right off the balcony. "And who on Godís verdant New Terra are you?" I asked with insinuation dripping off every bud of my human tongue.

"I am your courtesan," she said, the sun glinting through her as if she was spun of heavenly silk (which technically she was). "All this celebration is to honor you, and I am to honor you as well."

I smiled, and though I wanted more than anything to high-five the nearest soldier I could find, I did not.

Though the banners, lapel pins, bumper stickers and t-shirts all bore my strapping image while the Heroes sang (however discordantly) my brilliant praise, I knew the real reason I was here. It was not to share passionate interludes with demi-fairies from distant worlds ... though nothing was going to prevent that. I was here for the People. They were the ones who inspired me to this Greatness. The challenge of living up to every last ounce of expectation laid out by even the Lowliest of Beggar and Dumbest of Child was one I welcomed and exceeded.

Intergalactic Peace had been achieved and I wasn't about to take that Extra-Earthly feat away from anyone, least of all myself. After all, I may be just a man, but even at that I am still Tek Jansen: Space Adventurer and Lady Killer nonpareil.

Member fiction provided courtesy of user Walt Schmerz.

(You can also read the page that inspired this.)

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