Earth, the world we call home. Floating through space in eternal orbit around the star we call Sol, the Sun. Scientists say that it shall remain this way for another 4.5 billion years. But, as history can, and has shown, the future, can never be predicted.....

May 20, 1998.....

"Okay, next dungeon!"
Chris Blair, a fifteen year old game master, sat in his chair playing Legend of Zelda,: Ocarina of Time, and had just beaten the second dungeon of the post-Master Sword part of the game.
"Freakin' dragon's not a terror, it's a giant fire-lizard version of Whack a Mole," he said, a final insult to the now deceased Volvagia, who was, in the game at least, nothing more than a dissolved skull. "Geeze, this game is too easy."

Meanwhile, on the other side of the country, another video game player, though not a game master, was working on his computer, typing up material for his web site, the Unoffical Captain N Homepage. His name, Mark Moore, a 20 year old fan of the long cancelled series Captain N: The Game Master, a show that Chris was very fond of before it's untimely cancellation in 1992. He was at that moment writing a story he called, "Gameslide".
"Let's see, Wily gets the blueprints for the timer, thanks to Tomahawk Man, what next?" Mark was now stuck on his curent story, "Gameslide". "Hmm... Oh yeah, gott'a do the concert scene. Have Remmie and Rick do a song, that one from Return of the King should work."
Typing up the material, Mark sighed as he sat back. "Well, that should do it. Just need to put in the song, and it's done."
He opened another file, and copied the song lyrics he was looking for, pasting them in the other file he was typing. After adding some other material in between the lyrics, he finished up the story, and saved the file. "There, done."
He saved the file to a floppy, and sighed as he checked the time; it was almost ten o' clock. "Geeze, that took a while, and it's only the first draft. Get to the next tomorrow."

Chris sighed as he beat the third dungeon of Zelda. "Geeze, this game is too easy. Three dungeons in only three hours." Reaching for his water, Chris gulped it down, when he heard a strange rumble. Not an earthquake, too soft. It felt more like it was coming from above rather than below. "What the hell?"
Looking outside, Chris looked up to see a faint reddish-white ribbon in the air, high above the surface. "What is that?"

At the same time, Mark noticed the same rumble, and looked out to see the same ribbon. "What the?"

All over the world, people were staring at the sky in awe at the strange event. World leaders were the first to become concerned, not knowing if this was a natural phenomeon, or some kind of new weapon.
Soon, a meeting was called at the UN, leaders and representitives from all over arguing and throwing accusations everywhere.
It got to the point where the representitive of the United States was forced to bang his gavel so hard, that it snapped in half. "Order, order!!"
As the chamber finally calmed down, the US representitive sighed. "Now, we've eliminated the possibility that this event is a weapon. The only explination is natural phenomenon."
"But what kind of phenomenon? There's never been any event like this in history."
The US representitive nodded wearily. "Our best scientists and astronomers on working on it at this very moment."
"A lot of good that'll do us," the United Kingdom representitive replied. "No one can identify this object."

"Dude, never seen anything like it," Matthew Swinford remarked. Chris was over at his house, and both were staring up at the glowing strand of light.
"Reminds me of that nexus thing from Star Trek 7," Chris added. "It's weird though. I get the feeling that I've seen it before, besides a sci-fi. Almost like...a lost memory."
Swinford shrugged. "Watch, it'll be gone by next week." He turned and went into his house, then started struming away at his guitar.
Chris, on the other hand, stayed outside as he continued to look at the ribbon of light. "Or worse..."

"Bringing the Hubble around."
At NASA, the scientists and astronomers that ran the satillite division were swiftly tryiong to find out was the ribbon was. They had finally decided to use the Hubble Telescope to get a better look, and were now using it to view where and what the ribbon was.
What they found was not encouraging. "Jesus...that thing's only twelve miles above the atmosphere."
"Too close," another operator replied. "Just what is it though?"
"Far as computers can tell," came another voice. "Nothing we've ever seen. Looks like, a tear in the fabric of space itself to me."
"You ever seen a tear in the fabric of space other than a sci-fi?" came a mocking reply.
"What else would you call it?"
"Enough!" the project director shouted. "We've got to figure out what it is, where it came from, and what it's going to do. Let's go people!"

Elsewhere, in an underground complex not far from Roswell, New Mexico, a man was sitting with his back to the desk of his dimly-lit office. He heard a knock at the door, and smiled slightly. "Enter."
The door opened, and a man with short cropped black hair walked into the room. "Progress report, Davidson."
"We're almost ready, sir," the man with black hair replied. "We're doing the final systems checks now. Maybe another half-hour."
"Excellent." the man said.
"Director," Davidson began, "we've detected what looks a side-effect of our work, and the rest of world has seen it too."
"The UN and their lackies are passing it off as natural phenomena," the man replied. "Why should we be concerned? It's not our lose."
"Sir," Davidson stated. "What if this is a side-effect of our experiments? What if it causes something we can't control?"
"We'll be gone by then," the Director answered. "Even if this, ribbon is some kind of tear in the fabric of reality, it will only aid our experiments, not hinder them. " Turning away, the man sighed. "Return to your work, and inform me when we're ready to begin.
"Yes, sir."

Back in California, Chris was typing away on his computer, replying to an email, when he felt the same rumble again. This time, it was stronger than the one the night before. "What the hell?"
He looked outside, and saw that the ribbon had gotten either lager, or closer to Earth. If he wasn't worried before, now he was. "Man, Swindford, you have no idea how...."
That's when he noticed something. Even though it was broad daylight, Chris swore he could see what looked like stars inside the ribbon. "Oh my god...."
Another rumble shook him as the ribbon seemed to expand in size, and a bit more of what looked like faint stars opened up into open space. The ribbon now looked like some kind of window.
"Shit, what the hell is that thing?!"

Davidson raced down the hallways of the complex, and burst into the Director office. "Sir, we've got a problem!!"
"What now?"
Davidson walked over and placed the papers and photos he was carrying on the Director's desk. " getting bigger. It's definitely not a result of our work, but the experiments are stimulating it!"
"What?" The Director turned to face Davidson, and looked at the photos. "When were these taken?"
"Ten minutes ago," Davidson replied. "And it gets worse. That thing is growing and expanding by the minute. We estimate that it'll be big enough to swallow the entire Earth in two days tops, maybe even less. The Project's work won't be operational for another four days. We've got no chance."
The Director frowned as he though it over. "We'll have to risk departure before testing is done."
"But sir!" Davidson protested. "Without full testing, that could be dangerous!"
"Would you rather find out what effects this, thing has on the human body?" the Director stated. "I certainly don't, and I doubt you do either. Now, we move out. Immediately."

Panic swept the world as the spacial object continued to grow in size. Some people claimed that it was the end of the world, others said that it was some kind of alien portal. Whatever was said, it only served to spread fear.

Chris had somehow managed to stay out of the panic, but the events only served to worsen his worries. "Remind you of anything," he asked his firned, Michael Miller.
"Yeah," Miller replied. "The Bug portal in WC Prophecy. Think that we're going to be invaded?"
"Not really," Chris replied as he looked up at the now portal-like ribbon. "I just got this feeling, that something's going to happen, something that's going to change the entire planet, and that thing is going to be responsible for it."
"Let's hope things turn out for the better."
Chris sighed, and lowered his head. "That's the problem. I think things are only going to get worse."
A powerful rumble shook the area, and bot Chris and Miller looked up to see that the ribbon's portal-like opening was doubling in size, and the other side could clearly be seen. Besides the stars, a strange looking asteroid passed by the opening, and Chris stared in disbelief. "Is it me, or was that..."
"Metroid?!" Miller finished. "From Captain N?! No way we just saw that!"
"We've got a bigger problem then we thought!"

Panic had also gained a hold on the underground complex in New Mexico. People scrambled to evacuate the complex, but not by going to the surface.
"Gate opening in five, four, three, two, one. Engage systems!"
A massive blast of energy was released as a transdimensional portal was torn open, and the operators of the complex scrambled to get through. "We're all set! Inital scans show that the Gate is stable! Let's go!"
The Director nodded as he brought his own gatherings. In a way, he was a bit sad at having to abandon the comblex, but they would continue their work elsewhere. After they were all through, the Gate Forger was programmed to send itself through the dimensional rip it had torn, so that they could continue their research.
"Everyone through, now! That tear in space is about to open up to swallow this entire planet, and I don't want to find out what happens to the world when it does!"
Everyone plunged into the portal, taking everything they could with them. The Director took one last look at the complex lab, then stepped into the portal himself. There would be another time for his plans, and another place to unleash them.
Several seconds after the Director was through, the computer systems made a scan for remaining workers, found none, and expanded the portal to swallow up the entire lab.

In space, the tear was hit by the opening of the artificial portal, and reacted by expanding more than five times in diameter, more than large enough to swallow the Earth, and bolts of lightning-like energy tendrils reached out and began to pull on the Earth, aiding the planet's orbit into entering the gaping mouth of the rift.

Chris gasped as he watched the lightning grasped at the horizon. "Holy shit!!"
"Christopher!!" his mother yelled. "What did you just..."
"I don't think that's any concern right now, mom! Look!"
His mother looked outside, and gasped in horror at what she saw. "Oh my....what's happening?!"
Chris looked up into the mouth of the rift, and realized what was going on. It's a portal to another universe, he thought. And Earth's being sucked into it!
Almost on impulse, Chris began to type down everything he could remember onto his computer in as a compact way as possible. Who he was, when he was born, and everything he was need to know who he had been. He didn't know why, but something told him that he would need a way of remembering his life, and that even his efforts would not be enough.
In writing it, he failed to notice that the rift had gotten much closer, and was shaken out of his work by a massive rumbling. He held onto his desk as the shaking stopped, then looked to see that the portal was coming up fast. Chris quickly backed up everything he had done on his computer, and saved all the files that were on. He knew that there was a small chance of him remembering, then felt another rumble as the portal began to swallow up Earth.
Chris fell to the ground, and his leg became trapped under his TV as it fell. He cried in pain, then looked to see that his old Power Glove, the one he had rigged up as a movie prop, was lying in front of him. Not knowing why, he grabbed the Glove, strapped it to his right arm, and pushed the TV off his leg. Pain shot through the limb as he stood up, but he pushed it out of his mind and hobbled to the front door, where he saw that the portal's event horizon was approaching.
A faint field of energy crackled where the part of Earth that was still in it's universe ended and the part that had been swallowed by the portal began.
"Good god...."

"Jesus Christ!" Mark Moore was having almost the same reaction as he saw the faint crackling energy field. He too had saved his computer files, but unlike Chris, had not thought to make a record of what memories he could. "This isn't good!!!"
He soon felt a blast of energy pass through him as the field hit, and he screamed in pain. He could feel something rip into his mind, threatening to fry out his brain as the pain continued. Mark soon collapsed to the ground, screaming as he thrashed about on the ground. "AAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!"
"That, human, will be the least of your problems!! Ah ha ha ha ha!!!"
Mark's screams began to stop as his eyes flashed red, and he fell still, laying on the ground, his only motion that of his chest rising with his breathing.

Chris ran outside to where some of his friends where, and saw one friend in particular. "Karly!"
The girl he called to turned, and began to run to him when the energy field hit, slamming her and several other people to the ground, and Chris fell to his knees as pain shot through his mind, painful images flashing by in a massive vision.
The image of a girl appeared as the images faded, one with glowing eyes and shining blue hair. Her eyes seemed to stare right into Chris' soul as she spoke, and the pain in his mind continued. "Chosen're our only hope! Please, you must save us! The dark Emperor has found a way back to Reality! You must stop him!"
Chris shut his eyes as the pain continued, unable to stop the hurt and agony that was pulsing through his mind. "What' aaaaaAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!" He faced towards the sky, his eyes opening, and golden light flashed in his eyes as he screamed in pain. Minutes later, he collapsed to the ground, out cold, and his breathing was the only motion from him.
As the energy field faded into the distance, Chris' Power Glove crackled with energy of it's own, and the red light on the control pad box blinked on as the Glove glowed faintly. It seemed to say "it's about time", and winked out as darkness settled, the Earth taking on an orbit around it's new blue sun, and the rift behind it collapsed as the Earth was all the way through.

Three months later....

"Make a wish!"
Chris smiled as he blew out the candles of his cake. It was his sixteenth birthday, and everything so far had been perfect. He and his parents had gone to MegaLand for his birthday, and Chris had enjoyed every minute of it. They had gone to VR arenas, famous landmarks, and Chris had even gotten to meet MegaMan and Dr. Light themselves.
It was indeed a great day for him. Except one thing. He couldn't remember any other birthday that he had ever had. This was it, this birthday was the first one he could remember. It was like until now, he had never had a birthday.
Shaking that off, Chris brought his attention to his mother, who was cutting off a piece of the cake for him. "Thanks." He took the plate, walked off to a wall, and sat down as he turned his attention to the sky. For some reason, he always felt compelled to look there, for no reason at all. It was like he expected something to come from it, whether he was on Earth, MegaLand, or any other world in VideoLand. An attack was a ridiculous thought, VideoLand has been at peace for almost eight years now.
Yet something continued to bother him. One of his video games, one that was based on the exploits of the Hyrulian hero Link, had some kind of bug in it. It wasn't something that messed up the game, but for some reason, it bothered him. Every now and then, a kind of code would flash across the screen, like a view of the program code itself.
Deciding to enjoy the day, Chris looked back to see his friend Todd Marshall walking over. "Hey Maniac," Chris said, using the name joke that he had Marshall played, due to the fact that they both had the same names as the two main characters of the Wing Commander games. Fortunetely, unlike the game Blair and Marshall, Chris and his friend weren't rivals.
"So, what'd you wish for?" Todd asked. "To meet Captain N himself one of these days?"
"Not likely," Chris replied. "I mean, the guy lives in the Palace of Power with Queen Lana. Wouldn't surprise me if they got married one of these days."
"And I suppose you would want to be there if and when they do?"
Chris smiled a bit, and nodded. "I wouldn't mind being there." He let out a deep breath, and looked reflexively to his right arm, which bore a Nintendo Power Glove strapped to it. He didn't know why it was there, but he always wore it when he was awake. It had been there as far back as he could remember, and if it meant something, then he dared not leaving it behind.
"It's a good day."
Chris nodded in agreement. It had been a good day. "I wonder though. Do you think Mother Brain and her army could show up one of these days?"
"Of course not!" Marshall replied. "What makes you think that?"
"I don't know," Chris sighed. He picked up a rock, and threw it hard, the stone skipping across the lake about twenty feet. "I just got this feeling, that something's gonn'a happen. I don't know, maybe it's just my imagination."
Just then, a dark shadow fell over the area, and Chris looked up to see a massive starship in the sky. Earth rarely received visits from other worlds' officials, and when it did, they came through the Warps, not on a starship.
What disturbed him even more was that this was a warship, not a transport.
"Holy...." He ran back to the party, Marshall right behind him, and Chris raced to reach his parents. "Mom!! Dad!!"
That's when the blasts of laser fire shot down from the sky, incinerating the nearby city, and sending smoke and flames reaching into the sky. Chris ran as fast as he could, but a blast fired down before he could make it, and the party are erupted into a fireball, the shockwave sending Chris flying back into Todd.
As he got back to his feet, Chris stared in horror at the flames. "Oh gods, no...No!!!" He ran to where the flames were still raging, hoping against reality that his parents were still alive. Marshall ran after him, but what they found shocked Chris even more than the attack itself.
He fell to his knees, tears pouring down his cheeks as he saw nothing left of his family and friends. "Gods, no....please no..." He knew that it was true, and that this moment would stay for him forever.
That's when the message blared into the air from the starship, and a cold voice rang out, carrying it's dark proclamation. "Attention people of Earth!! The planet of Terra is now under the control of the League of Darkness. This demonstration was a mere warning to those who would consider rebellion. VideoLand is now under the rule of the Sovereign Mother Brain, and the Commandant!!"
Chris stared in dispair at the starship, but sadness was soon replaced by anger, then pure fury. His family was dead, VideoLand conquered again, and there was no hope of resistence.
At least, that's what the League of Darkness wanted. However, in "demonstrating" their power and control, they had just made the worst enemy they would ever have. Chris didn't know who was directly responsible for this, but he had an idea of who had been behind it.
"The Commandant....."

To Be Continued....

Copyright 1999, 2000 by Chris Blair