Evelyn Disraeli Dryden Bonald Burke Carey Filmer Eliot Hyde Maistre Salisbury Johnson was known as Eddy to his family and his friends. His parents, disgusted at how Canada’s public schools had degenerated into left-wing indoctrination camps, had sent him to a private, church-run, school instead, and so unlike most young Canadians his age, he could read and write proper English and was capable of formulating a logical argument. His love and appreciation for his country, reinforced by his having been taught her history without either a Marxist or a Liberal Party interpretive lens, further set him apart from the majority of his generation. He was also a huge fan of superhero comic books and motion pictures based on the same but in this he was not so different from his peers.
Eddy liked to enter contests and occasionally even won a prize. His favourite contest was the annual snap-back-the-spoon contest at the frozen yogurt chain founded by legendary sports figure Jim Morton. Not that this has anything to do with our story, but for the sake of clarity, the Jim Morton in question is neither the Scottish soccer player nor the Australian football player but the Canadian star of the mixed-sport basket hockey, who still holds the all-time world’s record for the longest uninterrupted period spent dribbling the puck. Every summer, his frozen yogurt franchise holds a contest. Every frozen yogurt, ice cream, or gelato they serve comes with a special, contest, plastic spoon. When the customer has finished his frosty treat, he snaps back the handle of the spoon to discover whether he has won a prize or not. Eddy would play every day while the contest was on, although usually he won nothing more than another frozen yogurt.
One hot summer’s day, however, after he had enjoyed a particularly refreshing dessert, he snapped back the handle of his spoon and saw the words “mystery prize.” “Oh boy”, he thought, “this is going to be something really good.” So he took his prize-winning spoon to the counter, and his server congratulated him and took his contact information, telling him that he would receive an e-mail within the next couple of days telling him what his prize was and how he could claim it.
The next morning Eddy checked his e-mail and, sure enough, there was a message from Jim Morton’s corporate headquarters. He opened it and read that he had won a free tour of the Clock Museum. This dampened his spirits somewhat, as a tour of the Clock Museum ranked fairly low on the list of prizes he was hoping to win. To be precise, it was 97, 832nd on the list, right below an ear-wax removal and above a roll of non-stick masking tape. Like Priam of Troy, however, for whom the policy did not work out so well, he was not one to look a gift horse in the mouth and, besides, he had nothing better to do on the date of the tour, which was the twenty-seventh of July.
“The twenty-seventh of July”, he noted, “is the ninth of Thermidor, the day of the Great Reaction, when the Reign of Terror of the French Cromwell, Maximilien Robespierre finally came to an end and he was condemned to the same bloody fate to which he had assigned so many others. It ought to be a day of celebration, and I am going to be spending it looking at clocks.”
He, nevertheless, marked it on his calendar, and when the day arrived, showed up at the museum to claim his prize. He was less than thrilled to find that his tour guide was Mona Monotone, widely considered to be the most boring tour guide in the entire Dominion, if not the Commonwealth. According to legend, she had led a group of hyperactive, twelve year old boys, who had just loaded up on sugar, on a tour of Video Game World, and had put them all to sleep within the first five minutes. The legend, Eddy was about to learn, was not exaggerated in the slightest.
When he woke up, hours later, curled up beneath a display of watches that had been made by Thomas Tompion, the famous seventeenth century English horologist he discovered that night had fallen, the museum was closed, and he had been locked inside.
“When it rains it pours” he said to himself.
All at once a flash of lightning could be seen in the sky which was followed by a loud boom of thunder.
“I didn’t mean it quite that literally.”
Eddy walked around the museum looking for a way out but could find none. He then tried to find a way of entertaining himself until the morning when somebody would come by to open the museum and let him out. All he could find was a radio, which he turned on. The only channel that was coming through was playing a marathon of Cher’s post-Sonny break-up-themed hits. “Believe” had just ended and “I Found Someone” was starting to play. Eddy sighed and tried to turn the radio off but found that the power button was jammed. Eddy tried jiggling the button for most of the duration of the song to no avail. He then got up and headed towards the workshop in hope of finding a pair of plyers. As he did, the Cher marathon segued into “If I Could Turn Back Time”
“Well”, Eddy thought, “At least it is fittingly ironic, considering that I am trapped in here among all these time pieces.”
As Eddy passed before the largest window of the museum, he tripped over something and fell into the giant grandfather clock which faced the window. He struggled to extract himself from the clock, but before he succeeded he looked up through the window and saw a shooting star. At that exact moment the song reached the chorus and the title line was running through his head as he saw the star. Also at that exact same moment a bolt of lightning came through the window and struck the grandfather clock in which Eddy was trapped. He immediately fell into unconsciousness again.
When he awoke again, he finally managed to crawl his way out of the clock. He felt strange, but that did not surprise him considering he had just survived a lightning strike. What did surprise him, was that he did not feel injured. He felt stronger, faster, and more clear-headed than before.
All of a sudden the front door to the museum swung wide open. Standing in the doorway, however, was not the museum curator, any of the other museum staff, the local police, or anyone else whom he might have expected to come by at that time of night. Rather it was a figure dressed in a monk’s robe, with the cowl pulled up over his face.
“Eddy Johnson, I presume?” the monk asked.
“Well, it isn’t Dr. Livingstone” Eddy joked. “Who are you and how do you know my name?”
“I am called Brother Whippet, and I have been sent from the ancient and holy Order of the Marshmallownians to find you.” (1)
“I’ve heard of you. You guys are the monks who make the Benedictines and the Franciscans look like the epitome of worldliness in comparison. You came all the way from Romania to find me? Alve-Say et-ay Ave-ay.”
“Etay ibi-tay. I’m impressed. Few outside of our order speak our tongue. Brother Moonpie and Brother Wagonwheel told me that you were an unusual young man.”
“How on earth do you guys know anything about me?”
“An ancient prophecy. Long ago, Christendom – Christian civilization – was defended by the brave knights who served its kings and defended the Church. It was foretold that on the anniversary of the Great Reaction a new knight would arise to fight for Christendom in her darkest hour. Today is that day, and you are that knight.”
“Me, a knight? Are you serious?”
“Very serious. Tell me, did anything unusual happen to you today?”
“I got trapped in the Clock Museum. That does not happen to me every day.”
“I meant apart from that. Did anything else unusual happen to you while you were trapped in this museum?”
“You mean like getting stuck in a clock that got struck by lightning?”
“Yes. The circumstances that converged around that event have given you the powers that you will need in your fight.”
“What sort of powers?”
“All of the usual superhero stuff – super strength, super speed, and flight, plus one power that is unique to yourself.”
“What is that?”
“Look at your wristwatch.”
Eddy looked at his watch and to his astonishment he saw that it was going backwards.
“What does this mean?” he asked.
“It means that your special power is the ability to turn back the clock. It is the most essential power of all for the hero who will champion Christendom against the evil forces of progress.”
“Who or what are these evil forces that you say I will have to fight?”
“Lucy the gender-confused devil has recently gone on a supervillain creating streak. We don’t have a complete list of who all he has bestowed the diabolical powers of progress on, but the ones we know of so far are Social Justice Warlord, Madame Diversity, Bleeding Heart, Egalitron, The Secularizer, Abortion Lady, Lezbo the Feminist Fatale, The Woke Millennial and his Aunty Fa, Veganator, small-r republican, Treehugger the Ecofreak, The Mad Democrat, The Forward Thinker and the Globalizer. You will have to face these and many other foes. Since you are a Canadian, it is almost inevitable that your crusade for Christendom will also bring you into direct conflict with Captain Airhead and it is not unlikely that you may have to face Lucy himself.”
“That is a lot of enemies – but I am ready to fight in this noble cause!”
“Then allow me to formally swear you in to your knighthood. Do you swear to loyally serve your Queen, country and Commonwealth?”
“I do so swear.”
“Do you swear to faithfully practice the Christian religion and to defend and protect Christ’s Holy Church against all its enemies?”
“I do so swear.”
“Do you swear to defend the weak, especially those who are picked on and bullied by anti-racists, feminists, vegans, the alphabet soup gang, and politically correct thugs and goons in general?”
“I do so swear.”
“Do you promise to fight Lucy the devil and the Liberal Party of Canada to your dying breath?”
“Then, as a brother of the Order of St. Michael of Marshmallow, I dub thee knight, and bestow upon thee thy superhero name of Reaction Man.”
So it was that Christendom gained a new champion and a new superhero was born.
Stay tuned for the next exciting episode in the Adventures of Reaction Man.
(1) For more of the Order of Marshmallownians see Brother Moonpie and the Devil’s Apocalypse.
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