“Captain Kronor: The Origin Story” (Daily Planet email #929)
Flashback: to an unspecified past, draped in telegraphic sepia tones and everything is made of wood, or metal. Or glass. Anyway, no plastic, it’s very muted. A little dusty. With a bell’s ring, the door opens at the five and dime.
Young Kronor: Hiya, Mr. Jennings!
Mr. Jennings: Why, hello young Jacob.
Young Kronor: Jake.
Mr. Jennings: Sure, sure. What can I do you for, Jacob?
Young Kronor: Do you know who my parents are?
Mr. Jennings: Well, of course I do, JK. Hans and Nora Kronor. Good people.
Young Kronor: Oh. So they exist?
Mr. Jennings: Absolutely, I’ve known you and your folks since you were a pup.
Young Kronor: Then I’m not a mysterious orphan from the skies?
Mr. Jennings: I believe not.
Young Kronor: Oh. Are they here?
Mr. Jennings: No, I think you’re pa’s at the mill as usual, and your ma’s probably at home with your little brother, Fredrik.
Young Kronor: So they’re not going to be gunned down right in front of me and this magazine stand, into which the camera slowly zooms in to focus on an ironically-relevant headline?
Mr. Jennings: Nothing ever happens in this town, you know that, and certainly nothing as violent and sordid as what you describe. Boy oh boy, what an imagination on you.
Young Kronor: Have you got any Moon Pies?
Mr. Jennings: Fresh out.
Young Kronor: Astro Pops?
Mr. Jennings: Too dangerous.
Young Kronor: Do you have any Starburst Fruit Chews?
Mr. Jennings: Those haven’t been invented yet. Say, what are you getting at, son?
Young Kronor: If you must know, I’m looking for my origin story. How and why I decided to become a space hero.
Mr. Jennings: Well, even if you could go into space, I don’t see why you would have to in order to become a hero. Why, there’s plenty of people right here in town who could use your help. You know, just yesterday, Mrs. Halloway was telling me –
Young Kronor: Bo-ring. That is not my destiny. I really thought I would find the keys to it in this dusty old five and dime.
Mr. Jennings: Look, son, I run a clean establishment, there’s no dust here. But I’m gonna let you in on a little secret, it’s a grown-up kind of secret, but I think you’re ready for it by the sound of things. Take a seat, over on that barrel. Now, just this morning, I burnt my toast, inventoried the bandages, and my son called from Omaha to tell me he made it back safely. I reckon by tomorrow, I won’t remember any of these things. Maybe today, Jacob, right here in this store, has nothing to do with your future and I dare say you will forget all of it, all of this, eroded by the march of time and tribulations of the heart. I bet space is filled with things like that. Things that happen, sure, but don’t add up to anything else of import.
Young Kronor: Mr. Jennings. I’m going to go to space to prove you wrong.
Mr. Jennings: I’d be glad to be wrong if it would make you happy, Jacob.
Flash-forward: to space, where a heated battle is taking place. Multicolored weapon bursts pierce the darkness while rows of military ship formations rise and disperse into the maelstrom.
Captain Kronor: (emerging in an escape pod through the particulates of an exploded satellite, pursued by metal-eating drones) Hmm. You know, I think Mr. Jennings was right.
Do not miss these other exciting adventures currently in development hell:
Captain Kronor Trips on the Seam on the Sidewalk Where the Basement Elevator Access Used to Be
Captain Kronor Waits for a Muffler Repair
Captain Kronor and the Dull Moons of Xtabay
Captain Kronor Waits for a Muffler Repair 2: The Other Spaceship
Captain Kronor and the Gang Meet the Harlem Globetrotters in Space for No Apparent Reason
Captain Kronor Might, You Know, Just You Watch
Captain Kronor and the Somehow-Deleted Contact List
Captain Kronor Moves His Desk Nearer to the Space Heater
Captain Kronor and the Next Available Operator
Captain Kronor Should Have Put the Garbage Cans Out Earlier
Captain Kronor in: The Sky’s the Limit, Literally