Friday, September 1, 2023

The Uplift Protocol Rebirth: Issue 2


Issue 2: Earth Primary Chess

What has come before will always ripple across time and space. It has always been this way. Chronos is a devious creature but he does have an origin.--Arcane Histories: Vol 10

Though we no longer touch the face of God? His blessings flow through all of us. It is up to each man and woman to listen to the higher calling of their soul.--Muthra Origins: Post Convergence

Would I have still done everything the same way? Who’s to say? In the end we all saved one another. --Anna McQuire: Private Journal

People often ask me what it was like. The River of Rebirth. Souls. The Gateway. Many words for it. I lack the abilty to articulate it all. Even now. All these ages later.--Sleeping in Starlight: Final Epoch

Area 51

Mutha Archives

December 10th 2103 A.D (Pre-Convergence Eden Cycle)

    The gun would not be enough.

    Yes, it could kill void walkers but Chronos had an original form. Thoth allowed Charmer and Medusa to run interference on the upper levels. The codes the sleepers within Atlantis had given him would be just enough for this purpose.


    His fingers brushed against the case. It popped open with a soft hiss.

    Inside were two black marbles. Thoth held them in his palm. Oh yes. This would bring the original husk to him but not in this time. This place. What silvers of soul that connected him to the tapestry cried out as he consumed those twin orbs.

    Everything had a price.

    The Devourer of All curled about his brain.

    You of all shapes finally understand. Yes. We are the best trap. We have grown beyond his control. Chronos wishes to commit the final Sin. We shall let him.

    The Matron glanced up from the chessboard.

    What the reprobates of simple flesh and soul called the Oversoul paused as her blackened piece took out another golden pawn. Thoth was quite malleable. What the lower rungs of life called a useful tool. Just smart enough to cause trouble. To bury into the chest of the crippled hope dubbed the Star-Spangled Banner. She smiled. Her ruby lips bled as their Father circled above.

    “Why do you care so much about them? They believe in a singular creation myth. How pathetic.”

    The Oversoul replied, “Because its true. Even we come from the same place.”

    She pointed to the Creator above them, “That one has been silent since we created every mote of dust imaginable.”

    Oversoul said, “Yet you are lonely. It is not enough that you embody all Sin.”

    She snarled, “What makes you so pious? False heavens through that comatose vegetable above us?!”

    He replied, “You have forgotten your purpose yet not all are Fallen.”

    She formed a cigarette from the ether about them.

    She inhaled the brimstone scent. “You think your little trap will contain all my followers?”

    Her mask slipped. Just long enough to reveal the sagging flesh underneath.

    She hissed, “You are no saint. I was the first! ME!”

    Black Scrawl exploded from her body. A pulse of white light from above burned away her assault. Oversoul rose from the table. From the corner of his eye he saw all of time play out. Souls reclaimed. Passed through the Ouros. This road could end only one way. He raised his gaze to their father. The one who Lived Beyond. White Scrawl rose from his body. Passed through his children.

    The Matron howled as the power twisted.

    “You see? THAT ONLY FEEDS ME!”

    The Oversoul said, “Every pulse brings you closer to final dominion.”

    She smiled. Her golden eyes darkened. “Yes.”

    Thoth muttered, “False Gods. The both of them.”

    Chronos’ knowledge flowed through his veins. The Mother’s children wished to destroy God. How shortsighted. He would do one better. Corrupt the flow of that entities playthings.

    You will be the hand that none shall see. Play your role. In the end?

    Nothing will matter.

New Ashbury, Texas

Star Spangled Banner Museum

March 8th 5490 A.C

    Lucifer summoned beams of light to spear the corpse to the floor. It was ridiculous. Helping his enemies but his cover was more important at this stage. Why was he uncorrupted by Chronos? Thoth must be a reason for it. These were many of his old comrades. Dancing to the tune of a withered husk of a creature controlled by the Matron.

    As Lensflair he shouted, “Burn!”

    The mummy’s hands ignited. The bits of cloth made for quite the accelerant. Golden flames consumed the remaining physical remains until only the outline of Black Scrawl undulated about the stoned barriers.

    Snake Charmer went flying from Ren’s deadened lips.

    The Highest perceived the push and flow of Black vs White.

    Each scrawl followed the dominion of the Matron and Oversoul. Their power flowed through the slumbering form of God. Everything in play required both to be sealed away from direct mortal access. There would be no more demis to the level of Dexter or Eliza Murphy after this act. Though they would continue on. No longer burdened by the tapping of the cosmic chessboard.

    Everything had a price. The Matron embodied all Sin. His father was the pathway to ultimate redemption. Souls given the chance to develop on their own. With the patterns, Weave and Threads to guide them. She would not allow such a relationship to develop. She believed all were destined to be Fallen.

    Where the Oversoul freely gave bits of himself to bolster mortalkind? The Matron endlessly devoured. Often stealing the souls and sleeves she required. That basic drive would be her undoing. She had no notion of self sacrifice. The net was unleashed. Convergence had been the key.

    All of reality bled into this moment.

    Eliza would understand it all in the end.


    He could sense Dexter tugging at the Black Scrawl from the deepest corner of the Soul Layer. Nearly done.



    Judgment catapulted into the main foyer. His boots connected with Snake Charmer’s head. Maiden’s voice resonated in his mind through their rings.

    >>Star is preventing the chemicals from going off. Need to….<<

    He replied, >>Understood.<<

    The Puzzler bellowed, “Incoming Smoker!”

    Pyra wrapped four long tendrils around Star’s head.

    “Broken toy of an uncaring avatar!”

    Bits of ice crawled up Pyra’s arms in response.

    The Banner had the audacity to smile up brightly at the possessed assassin.

    “As my friends would say? You may not want to catch this ball!”

    Star snapped her head around. Sending the assassin careening into the wall. Pyra’s body phased in response. She slammed into Medusa as the former Thoth acolyte snapped, “They are trying to buy time! Get that bomb to go off!”

    Both sets of eyes swirled with that pitiless inky black.

    Chronos glared at both. He relinquished his hold a bit. If they died it would not matter.

    They had served their purpose long enough.

    Pyra scrambled to her feet. Then she dashed off to the closest exit available. Smoke curled about 1000 feet in every direction. There was no escape. She materialized in the main statuary room. The monument of Star mocked her every move.

    She charged towards the Banner.

    Ice and flame from the Puzzler’s rayguns gave her pause.

    Medusa slid into the Weave aspect of the building.

    Cuts appeared on her arms and legs as she forced herself through the secondary Light Shaman barrier. She pressed her lips to the sigil marked upon the ground. Pain erupted along her jaw. She was thrown from the Weave.

    She spat on the floor.

    “Enjoy the show.”

    Emerald light protected us from the spikes that formed from every corner of the room.

    My Bardaxian friend shook his massive black furred head, <<Need magic.>>

    I got Maiden’s attention. I gave her a thumbs up.

    I lurched from the floor. My right fist connected with Black Scrawl infesting the south side of the room. So far the bomb was contained to this area. It would have to stay that way. The Highest tapped his paws against my shoulder blade.

    Reform this place. You know how.

    You’ve always known. The memory flow went both ways.

    My brother. Just as he trained himself while in slumber? So did I.

    Layers of memory unfurled. Matter Manipulation. My brother had mastered it long ago.

    Chronos was right in one regard: Why even give me such a power?

    I couldn't just manipulate physical matter. I brought in bits of the Weave and Soul Layer.

    One couldn’t always be the shield. A sword was needed.

    Just enough to counterbalance the resonance of the bomb.

    My knuckles were raw from the magical residue. I winced but continued to assault the scrawl. I had to buy Judgment more time. Endless rain of sparks danced behind my eyelids as Maiden sent out phosphorous rounds. Pyra’s endless refrain of curses let me know that one was corralled for the moment.

    Lensflair clapped. A wave of light pulsed from his body with each repetition.

    A khopesh flashed in the light of the pillars.

    It bisected the scrawled outline of the mummy sorceress.

    The threat to the physical layer was over.

    Pyra let out a garbled scream as vibrant green light encased her in an egg shaped prison.

    White cloaked Muthra and Shamans flooded the room.

    Doctor Impossible’s healing aura hit me like a battering ram.

    Mr. Red grabbed my other arm with his paws.

    “Not all over yet.”

    Medusa laughed, “At least I had a better run than Karvax.”

    She winked at me.

    Magical barriers squeezed at her arms, legs and mouth. Taleer’s clear chanting cut her off from the Soul Layer. Hilary had gotten away with her prize. I pressed my forehead to the white marbled pillar. Its cool surface dried the sweat of my brow. Why did the Oversoul want Hilary and Thoth together? Images bubbled to the surface. There were Thrones for the other side as well. Each one vying for dominion. My eyes snapped open. We would all be entrapted but for different reasons. Mr. Red whispered, “A cage yes but for what purpose? Remember that.”

    Evil would see it as a cage. “Duty.”

    Red patted my cheek. “Other layers. Other reasons. You are almost there.”

    Sul’sandra cupped my chin. “Impossible, her eyes aren’t tracking right. See how the cosmic energy flickers?!”

    Void Maiden took most of my weight. “Do it.”

    Impossible grimaced but complied. The needle hit me directly in the heart.

    It’s magic made to get past my invincibility.

    Color faded from the world.

    I found myself staring up into a crystal spiral tower. A golden trio of stars floated above it.

    Upon entering I found four thrones encased in a swirl of dark and light.

    From left to right I recognized all the figures.

    Thoth, Hilary, Dexter, then myself.

    The Curator grabbed my hand. “No future is set but for the learning!” His form shifted across all epochs.

    I examined Thoth’s face. He was not under the sway of Chronos. He was outside of it. Madness gleamed in those black and crimson orbs. The edge of his knife was placed against his temple. While in the other hand he held a goblet made of black ice. Hilary didn’t fair much better. A wreath of bones encircled her head. Her dark hair had bits of white streaks running through it.

    Her other hand jabbed at me. Her mouth twisted.

    My brother had his hands out. Cupped inside of them was the Grail.

    Various crystallized slivers protruded from my back.

    Endless faces formed behind my Throne, “Take it all back!”

    My brother and I were physical twins. Our souls locked together. Siblings of a blood beyond all men. No matter the cycle.

    Thoth and Hilary were that broken attempt. Though they weren’t twins by relationship or bloodline. They served a similar purpose. Was Chonos being thrown away? Di’axi appeared next. As I knew him. As Mr. Apple. Each image flickered across the Endless. Each line of Mortals remade. My mirror image rose from the Throne. Crystaline vines grew from my back. Feeding the sea of faces behind me.

    In my left hand was my usual shield.

    In my right was a twinned spear. The white and black Ouro entwined about the shaft. My brother poured the cosmic essense of the Grail over my head. “1000 shards shall encompass all.”

    The vision faded and I found myself on the floor of the museum.

    The hum of the corpse bomb flickered against my eardrums.

    “We have to go to the Weave.”

Issue 1: Here

Issue 3:

Thursday, August 24, 2023

The Uplift Protocol Rebirth: Issue 1


Issue 1: By Grail Sight

    Wasn't able to pull any of their masks off. Even that Void Maiden’s helmet remained put no matter what I threw at it. She has Golden City warding though. I could care a less about Argus Paxon. He’s a glorified sheriff who tracked down pawns. Chronos merely used them as fuel to bind all of us.--Hilary Brookes

    My daughter desires simple revenge. She shall get it but not in the way she desires.--Chronos

    Past is prologue. I often wondered on that saying. I like to think that most see their beginning as a proper outlet down the line. Just because its a prologue doesnt mean the ending is written on the wall for all time. The threads that shape us all will eventually meet.--Sleeping in Starlight: Post Convergence Vol 3

New Ashbury, Texas

Star Spangled Banner Museum

March 8th 5490 A.C

    Judgment circled the parameter.

    The green mist clung to the outer pillars. A black craft with a golden ankh landed in the clearing nearby. Ta’mathon’s personal body guards exited. Forming a protective ring. Thomas Murphy was still related to the great Pharaoh. Even if it was at least 20 generations between himself and Ta’mathon. Every 100 years the Golden City ruler had an additional generation of children. Not to rule but to expand. Spread their magical bloodline outward.

    Dexter pressed one fist to his heart. His gear matte gray. Triad Alliance standard.

    He said, “They are setting up the array now. If you would follow me?”

    Argus Paxton set the statue ablaze with his lighter.

    Ren whirled on him, “You dare?!”

    He directed the cone of fire towards her. She responded by lifting her arms. A wall of Black Scrawl undulated against the sparks. Her head snapped back as Void Maiden pulled all the weight she could muster into one solid punch. The Puzzler crouched down to study the singular tooth that had spilled from those red lips.

    The mummy spat at the Banner, “Would you like to know my dreams?!”

    Star replied, “No chance but how about you see mine!” She snapped her fingers.

    Renenutet jumped back as water splashed against her bare feet.

    The giant rodent brushed his whiskers, <<Glorious!>>

    Stones reformed. A massive crystalline dome sprouted.

    Star stepped through the archway. “Clever!”

    The Puzzler aimed his twin blasters at Renenutet. “After you!”

    Mr. Red followed with the rest arrayed behind him in a triangular patter. Paxton lit a cigar to mask the incantation he was forming under the tip of his tongue. By now Judgment would be riding in with Ta’mathon’s crew. Chronos would get his prize. But they would make him work for it. For now they would have to rely on Eliza to distract that walking pile of fake flesh. He motioned towards J’ino. From her armored back twin pulse cannons emerged. Their triangular points aimed at Ren.

    “Keep walking.”

    Ren belched a wave of fire. It bounced off of Paxton’s counter shielding. White Scrawl emblems burned her mouth. Fusing it together. She clawed at her face. Her shoulders shook as Star picked up a thin iron rod while her other hand continued to contract. Forming into a fist every few minutes. She prodded the sorceress to the central courtyard.

    “Chief? Isn’t that the same stuff you found off those cultists a while back?”

    Bits of Black Scrawl formed into a pattern of a blackened Ouroborous with white eyes.

    Ren backstepped into a side alcove. A muffled scream echoed when the statue clamped one massive paw on her shoulders. It reminded Paxon of the Silver King.

    J’ino fired into the wall. This place was outside memory. It wouldn’t cause permanent damage.

    At least not yet.

    Chronos had managed to make a partitioned net within the Weave. It wouldn’t be permanent. This cycle held sway with the Oversoul. Their minds still clung to their bodies. Thanks to Judgments enchantments on their uniforms and clothing. She still worried for Eliza. Her uniform hadn’t been properly augmented. Due to those Nodes. J’ino’s thoughts turned sour.

    Damaged nodes in the previous cycle.

    Crazy functional ones within the next.

    But for what purpose? Even her son wouldn't elaborate. Eliza was manipulating matter within the real world. Typherians could no longer channel such things but every bit of her former life recognized the movements. The muscle memory so ingrained that her shoulders twitched in response to each minuscule movement of her daughter’s back.

    Star bent the rod one handed. Into an infinity symbol. She pushed it against the glass door that rose from the mists.

    Mr. Red stated, <<The World within All Worlds!>>

    The mummy’s eyes bled into a solid wall of black.

    Her voice grew soft, “Why he insisted upon your creation…..”

    Star twisted around. Her fist drove upward.

    Chronos caught the fist, “Do you wish another death little bir– “

    Star smiled through the flash of Black Scrawl that encompassed her left fist.

    “Got you!”

    J’ino dived through the opened doorway. Paxton and Eddie on her heels.

    It closed with a soft click.

    She found that thread within that connected her to Thomas.

    We’re in. Get ready.

    Paxton removed his jacket. Once the material touched the ground it reformed.

    Words rose, “Alvari Otro Uvala.”

    J’ino pulled out the representation of the Golden City bond knife. It worked similar to the one she had within the previous cycle. It pulsed. It was bound to her soul. No matter how far she traveled.

    Stone pillars rose around them.

    Nine voices rang out, “What do you seek Bearer?”

    Jino replied, “The final thread of Renewal.”

    Chronos adjusted one manicured hand.

    The Devourer’s aura brushed against my defenses.

    I formed mirrors within my outer barrier. All other thoughts buried deep within my core.

    I kept repeating old songs within my mind.

    Human, Bardaxian, Typherian, Litari, Forger.

    I could see bits of scrawl falling from his face. He noted coldly, “I see the little bird picked up a few tricks. Who gave them to you I wonder?” Pressure built up in my cranium. Not the metaphysical push within this mind maze but in my body lying on its side. Void Maiden’s armored head dug into my left shoulder.

    I was nearly free.

    I inhaled. I knew that scent.

    Just a bit longer.

    Chronos danced back as if stung. Ren’s voice gained dominance for a single utterance.


    My eyes snapped open. I pushed against the floor. Nothing happened.

    My left hand twitched. Its rhythmic tap-tap-tap continued unabated.

    Renenutet’s body went flying past the outer marbled pillars.

    Green miasma filled every corner of the museum. Unlike my long ago mall escapades to rescue Ritark this was a step above. I didn’t have the skills to ward off this level of magic. I attempted to shift my weight. Float. Anything.

    Nothing worked. My mind was half encased in the prison Chronos had formed about us.

    Emerald K-9 reclined across my legs. While Mr. Red’s back curled against my other shoulder. I concentrated hard on everyone’s code names. I repeated it. A singular mantra. The light faded from the mummy’s eyes. She was truly dead. Her soul scattered to the winds. Yet a singular flame poured from her eyes, nose and mouth. It curled about the remaining ligaments of her legs and feet.

    Desiccated flesh cracked as black scrawl flowed to entwine itself about the mist.

    Her lower jaw elongated. Bones warped.

    The miasma shimmered. A steady pulsation that ran through my chest.

    After a few more heartbeats I was able to bring my functional arm and hand across my chest. Bits of stone and marble flowed towards me. It was a countdown. An explosion that would be felt across all layers. I had to buy everyone time. I flicked my index finger. Bits of metal formed into darts. I flung it at the Scrawl.

    It hissed. Vines twisted from Ren’s feet, curled up her legs until they reached her neck.

    The pulsation within the miasma halted.

    That’s right. Pay attention to little old me.

    Judgment pressed his palms to the roof hatch.

    Golden sparks formed. He gave one sharp tug. Ta’rammon’s guards muttered counter incantations. The whole place reeked of corruption. He brought his khopesh to bear as a tiger lept from the mists. Its fur covered with green vines. It had no living signature. With one swift strike he beheaded the beast as it bounded in. Its form decayed rapidly into the ether. Judgment motioned to the 5 men who followed. Two remained on the upper level. One accompanied him while the remaining two knelt to inscribe the cleansing circle.

    Golden spheres floated towards the main level of the museum.

    With each beat of his heart he could sense it.

    The corpse bomb.

    There was no other choice.

    He sent a replica of himself to every corner of the building.

    He had to buy his wife time.

    Hilary Brookes pried open the case. The plaque underneath read:

    Area 51 Prototype. XMZ-119.

    She mused, “Well now. Why? There is no weapon here.”

    Chronos clawed at her mind. She scooped up the case.

    It is the aura it gives off. We shall trace the footsteps that shall set us all free.

    Hilary’s eyes burned through the pain, “Then why put this box here?!”

    Chronos relented. Think. I am sure the obvious will come to you.

    Snake Charmer linked in. <<The High Orator of the Protectorate has arrived.>>

    Hilary’s legs moved without her permission. She dived into a side room as the area erupted with golden fire. The flames licked at her feet as she continued to run. Chronos’ withered arms curled about her neck. They will buy you time. All of them. My dear sweet daughter.

    Medusa’s voice held no emotion, <<Your will above all.>>

    The building shook.

    Hilary dived into a service tunnel. The metallic doorway slammed down as an alert sounded. Water sloshed as she continued to run. Area 51. Thoth had stolen that gun from the deepest recesses of that facility during the previous cycle. She recalled the broken offspring of General Murphy. The way the FBI constantly rebuffed her warnings. Why couldn’t she remember that hated enemy? It was connected somehow.

    She screamed, “What did you take from me?!”

    Chronos replied, “Everything.”

    Blood trickled down my ears.

    I couldn’t give up. Magic was one of the few things that could hurt me. Gusts of smoke poured from my nostrils. Pyra. She reformed next to me. Her lips against my ear. “Enjoying the show? Honestly, that mummy was destined to be the first to die. Who knew having my simple skill set would set me apart from mere cannon fodder.”

    She cupped her hands behind her head and reclined against the statuary.

    A maniac grin spread. Her dark red hair was pulled up into a severe bun.

    “It was so easy. Just waited til you were busy rescuing some poor sod. Slip in with another puff of smoke from a burning building. Or in the company of smokers. Cigars are a necessity! Or was it even further back. Even that Doctor wasn’t able to find me.”

    That was a bluff. This place had braziers burning along the main entryway.

    I let my expression waver. Just enough to make the assassin lean forward.

    “Ohh? Concerned are we? Such a perfect little scout. Always helping.”

    She spat on my boot.

    “In the end, all this shadow play from our Parents will lead to the ruin of all. At least I have a proper front row seat.” My eyes flickered to her face. There was nothing left of the original personality. They were all Chronos. He just lingered on. The true puppet master. But how had he taken them all? The cultist rites? I bit the inside of my cheek. No!


    The bomb continued its advance on broken limbs. Clumps of hair continued to spill from Renenutet. The miasma continued to swirl. It was thicker now. Feeling spread into both of my hands. The upper portion of my chest. I continued to tap rhythmically with my left hand. Pyra stretched lazily. “Oversoul didn’t even fix you properly. Took so much of your power from the previous cycle.”

    She watched as the floor rippled.

    I took material from the pillars. Made a boundary that rose 2 feet. Bony fingers clawed at it.

    Momentarily blocked. Obsidian orbs studied my hand. “That’s rich. You inherited the blighted birthright this go around. But its so weak. Why did he not just merge you with your dear twin? Such a waste!”

    Chronos rose from his reclined position. His blackened eyes nearly consumed the whole of Pyra’s face. He crouched next to me. He yanked on my cape. Exposed the nape of my neck. He murmured, “No wonder. Again they cripple you. For what? Mother always said our dear Father had a few deficient masterworks but I didn’t imagine he’d be this stupid.”

    Chronos pushed against my suit. “Hardly any corded muscle about those nodes.”

    My nodes were retreating on purpose. I could feel my back go taunt as his fingers tapped the middle portion of my spine. Between the shoulder blades.

    “Barely a thimble of N-T buildup. Hmm. What are you supposed to be little bird? A way to infiltrate my true Tapestry?”

    Chronos evaporated as Void Maiden’s suit responded. A high pitched keen followed by ripple of subsonic energy rippled outward. She stood. Triangular turrets the size of her hand slipped from the compartments along her shoulders. The sharp clang of metal on metal echoed. I sucked in a breath. Ice formed within the back of my throat as Snake Charmer crashed into the barrier I had erected.

    Ren’s jaw clamped down on his neck.

    He howled, “Face the night!”

    I let them both have it.

    A river of ice shot out. Ren’s fangs still lodged in Charmer’s flesh.

    The drip of blood sizzled.

    Where was Judgment?!

Prologue: Here

Issue 2: Here