The page for Ikigai was created a little over a month after I published A Space Christmas Story. The original story list for it was quite different than what ended up actually happening. Only three stories from my original publishing made the cut: A Space Christmas Story, The Monster and the Maiden, and Girl. The original concepts were as follows:
1. Girl (olivien story + trickster/weepel) 2. A Space Christmas Story (kuriza, vegeta, nappa) 3. The Monkey King (roshi story + ledas hot springs, including a flashback to the piccolo wars when roshi came here last time) 4. The Monster and the Maiden (cyleria tells ss tale to ledas) 5. Fancy Feast (beerus + whis + mr. satan + fat buu + ledas) 6. The Ocean In Bloom (icer)
Of that list, Fancy Feast became The Naptime Championships, and The Ocean In Bloom became He Needs Some Space Milk, both of which are stories in Vöntun. As can be seen by almost all of the story ideas, they were barely developed and were changed up quite a bit for the most part (Girl for example was not anywhere close to what it became as of this description, nor was The Naptime Championships).
On April 6, 2017, I began working on Twelve Majestic Lies, and the Ikigai page was updated accordingly (with The Ocean In Bloom being moved to a later collection). This story was begun before One Chop Man. I only completed about a page of TML before creating the page for One Chop Man on April 15, 2017. However, I did not begin work on OCM until April 28th. I did not update the wiki (removing The Monkey King) with OCM until May 4th, one day before the story was published onto it. Throughout the work on OCM, I continued to edit TML, though I only managed to write about a page and a third of it. In fact, OCM was not the only story that would be completed before TML, for Girl would be too. You can read about why that happened on Twelve Majestic Lies' anthology page.
This story was written over roughly a one week span. Only three pages of it were completed up through May 2, 2017, though. I did the majority of writing on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th. I went through a flurry of writing and editing over those three days. Those were some of my most productive writing days in recent times.
Anyways, for this story, the main inspiration came from One Punch Man. I wanted to do a one punch man episode, so to speak, in the setting of Dragon Ball. Whis immediately came to mind as the person most capable of fulfilling that task. Angels are not meant to interfere in mortal issues, but they can, in my opinion, if they are attacked. They can always defend themselves. So that was the approach I took to this. I spent much of the early sections also having Whis sample food, for piggy Whis is very funny to me and is something I write about fairly frequently for my own pleasure.
Indeed, the opening section is perhaps the most consequential. This story has the dual purpose of telling a one punch man episode, but also explaining how Sorbet is able to wound SSB Goku in the ROF arc. I don't think even un-powered, unaware Goku could be hurt by Sorbet, so I came up with Whis losing a powerful ki ring on Planet Bas (Guldo's homeworld) which Sorbet later finds. Sorbet does not actually find it in this story, for that would be weirdly coincidental. I think one of the PTO volume IV chapters may show him acquiring the ring. I don't think it'll be in a one-shot. And it will also be relatively late in the timeline - probably in the Age 770s - when Sorbet finds the ring. This story takes place when Guldo is a kid, so it is decades earlier.
Each of the Ikigai stories has its twin, in a way. A Space Christmas Story and One Chop Man both utilize lavish prose, a sort of child-like giddiness in tone, and pictures above every new section. This is not true for the other four stories. The Monster and the Maiden as well as Twelve Majestic Lies both utilize stream of consciousness. And Girl and Mountain Bird deal with a more mature theme that I will get to in those anthologies that is an undercurrent in the overall plots of those stories, leading to the protagonists feeling both existential dread and loneliness.
One Chop Man is therefore a more carefree story. Whis is never in danger. This story showcases Lipanto and Planet Bas, showing off the cuisine, culture, and characters living in those planets. It is as much a travelogue as it is a parody of One Chop Man. I shall discuss the thematic inclinations of this story in the endnotes below. I think it is as much about aesthetic and hedonistic indulgence as it is a thematic story, though. Whis being a static character, not prone to much growth, made that a necessity. Anyways, onto the endnotes. This one should be rather light-hearted, I expect.
“And what is this one called, again?” Whis said, sniffing at the piece of green-grilled meat held between his chopsticks.
“Food, food, food,” the deformed Bas replied with the swagger of a fourteen year old human who wants nothing more than to be Gordon Ramsay’s bed slave. “That right there’s a Takkodile Extra Deluxe Supreme,” said the man, stroking the air above his bald head, probably imagining that there was a wild forest of hair up there, and of course, said hair would be able to be manipulated with utter prehensility. This man was the God of Food, after all. “Man you’re gonna be desirin’ quick now.”
“Desiring what?” Whis narrowed his eyes and plopped the morsel into his mouth, not waiting for a reply.
“Yer fuckin’ gullet’s gonna be transported to the void. I heard from my cousin Cystan the Earth Dragon that you never feel real desire till your stomach time travels with the food it’s tryin’ to digest. Now you hold steady now… this is gonna be a real treat.”
“Lord Beerus’ litter box! That’s dreadful!” The angel spat out the chef’s savory treat, flexing his tongue in the way Beerus would when he was just about to lick himself. The motion produced a tension-releasing sensation in Whis’ most powerful muscle: what lingered of the Takkodile’s errant swamp taste was squeezed out and spat away.
Listless Bas wandered the streets of Guulbeyche Sanor. Runty and looking like his stomach was about to burst, one sweaty boy stumbled down the crooked street, a stick of plasma foam in his hand. He was young, but Whis sensed an uncommon power in him. His four eyes stared blankly up at Whis, almost as if he’d never seen an alien before.
“Mad scones, yeah, mad scones,” the child grunted, holding up his stick of wet blue plasma foam.
Oh, he’s a mutant – he can stop time. I wonder if he’s figured that out yet. Hmm? Certainly not. Not yet. I suppose I should kill him, but… Oh, he’s puny. He won’t be able to cause any harm, even if he does grow into that power I sense in him.
A feeling was born in Whis’ belly, brought about by that hideous appetizer, and spreading with sheer force through his body. This feeling was not unlike raw desire, which produced an elated sense of hunger deep within him – one he knew he could not satisfy on this backwater swamp world.
The boy disappeared down the street; Whis folded his arms, noticing his reflection in the shining gold of the ring on the index finger of his left hand. I really should eliminate all mutants of that type, he knew. But that one won’t do any harm. He has no chance of becoming the strongest in the universe. I don’t need to worry. It was his duty to monitor all living beings who could change, stop, or alter time in any way. For a Bas, the gene was rare, but not unheard of. He vaguely remembered visiting this place a couple hundred years ago to execute an extraordinary baby who had been born with time-altering powers far exceeding the one Whis had just sensed. People of that calibre were eliminated on the spot – not even Lord Beerus knew about that. But recently, in the last two or three hundred years, Whis had gotten lazy, and relaxed his standards, and so now beings of moderate power with minor time-altering abilities were maintaining a presence in the universe for the first time in living memory. Part of Whis wondered if his father would disapprove. His sisters surely would.
“Oh please, tell me you have something tastier than that. If you don’t, I won’t have anything to take back to Lord Beerus, and that will make him very angry – and you don’t want to see him when he’s angry.”
He grinned plainly, stepping away from his stall. These street vendors were all the same. Every one of them had posted their framed diplomas of their P.H.D.’s in Intergalactic Chef Theory, but only one claimed to be the God of Food. If he were a god, Whis wondered why he was a Bas. Bas are ugly, wretched, petty, vile creatures, as eager to suck out a dead tooth as they are to kill a man. He’d promised Lord Beerus the most exquisite treat upon the God of Destruction’s awakening in approximately three hours. Whis wasn’t about to show up empty-handed (or empty-bellied). He was feeling a bit peckish himself.
“This one’s called the Immortal Soup, Legendary Omnipotence flavor, special for you.” He sneezed all over the golden vat of steaming liquid.
“I’ll have a bowl to try.”
“You know this soup ain’t cheap, it’s immortal! Refined!!”
“We’ve already discussed how this is going to work,” Whis said simply, wiping his mouth. “Would you like me to call Lord Beerus?”
Somehow it seemed to Whis that a God of Food was hard countered by a God of Destruction. Even someone as magisterial as this man (who could cut through anti-ki like it was space butter)… Whis leaned over, peering at his business card, which lay in a neat, untouched stack on the left end of the man’s stand: Gourmet Emperor Bebi-Sonny Yamabulla.
“Watch this,” the God of Food laughed. Lifting a wooden spoon, he bit his teeth and pointed it at a shadow-casting skyscraper behind Whis. “Yeeaaauuahahahauaaaaaaaaagraaahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaauuuuuuuuuuuuuh!” he muttered.
“Are you feeling well?” Whis asked the man. “Perhaps you have the vapors?”
Steam rose from the lid-less vat of Immortal Soup. “Chefs from around the universe have tried to recapture the epic flavor of this soup, but every one of them failed. No one can dream of getting anywhere near the flavor profile of this soup! Did I mention its ingredients are from another time?”
“Aren’t we all?”
“I’m the Gourmet Emperor!” Bebi-Sonny Yamabulla said in a goading tone, ladling soup into a black-wood bowl. The aroma drifting through the humid winds was one of wet pavement and glassy eyes. Whis took the bowl with some lingering doubt.
“What’s in that other vat, hmm?” he asked, almost in desperation. Food poisoning was the worst experience in the world for him, since he was an Angel. Whis could not be killed by a petty thing like that, but that didn’t mean he wasn’t longing for the feeling of feeling anything at all. “Maybe it’s your greatest dish?”
“That’s where I go when I want to transform into my Instincting State.”
“Your what now?”
“You heard me, old lady.”
“Does that state make you a good cook?”
The bowl was mud-grey and swirling with foam. To Whis, it looked as it smelled, and smelled about right for its weight. There before him were the little baby’s eyes, four glazed-over globs of gluttony, not yet aware of the power lurking behind them. He set the bowl on the stall counter, conjured a spoon, and shaved off a morsel of it. Crouching and hoping for the worst, he brought the sludge to his lips.
Growling, Bebi-Sonny tore open the other vat cooker and jumped in, his squat, manly chest looking like a cork bobbing in the Atlantic. He threw the top on after him as whatever was inside rolled to a fierce boil.
“Oh my,” Whis said. The overpowering taste was too much for him. He spit it into the swamp-mucked streets. A passing Bas, his mouth smeared in something brown and now dried, waddled over to Whis, drawn to the attendant’s sheer negligence of class.
“That shit bad?”
“Well that was unexpected,” Whis replied in a daze. “That man claimed to be the God of Food, but his dishes were all show and no substance.”
“Ain’t no gods in this shithole,” the motherfucker said with a filthy grin. “There’s a thousand street rats just like him.”
“All the same,” Whis said, glancing at the vat Bebi-Sonny had yet to re-emerge from, “this world’s cuisine is renowned throughout the universe. I’ve yet to see any evidence of that famous Bas tastiness.” He sighed. “And I really would like to take back something for Lord Beerus before he wakes…”
“Yeah, I got you. I got you good. I know just where to take you, blue man.”
“As long as the food is delicious…” Whis eyed the boiling vat. Teleporting over to it, raising the lid with grace that reminded him of his younger sister, he peered inside.
The Gourmet Emperor had roasted himself into a wonderful state, perhaps not unlike that of a modern art piece, or the time-rending final act of Yukio Mishima. Whis wondered if he was meant to try some, or if this Instincting State was all just a facade. Regardless, one of the cutting knifes on the counter was humming blue, and Whis didn’t want to be rude, so he materialized a new spoon from thin air, and cupping it between both hands, gently scooped out one of Bebi-Sonny’s eyes.
Tasting it, Whis dropped the spoon and turned back to the other Bas standing in the street, his eyes lit up like silver-polished teeth. The eye tasted a bit chewy, and it wasn’t half good. He spit it onto the ground, took a business card, and quickly hurried away down the street. His tummy was screaming for something good; Whis hated feeling peckish; the feeling gnawed at him, reminding him that he could still, in fact, experience pain.
“Alright, blue man. So I met this wicker-salesman down by Suggaro Swamp who knew a professional peen-dipper outta the Bas-hole city limits–”
It was precisely at that moment, precisely as limits, released in a gruff, humid exhalation of living breath, made its tremulous presence known and for a moment persisted, that a shadow descended over the Guulbeyche Sanor. Glee popped and bounced through the roar the pierced the air, its staying power far grander than any Legendary Super Bas could hope to muster in a thousand breaths.
Whis did not recognize the species of creature. Its wide-clawed feet, no less than twenty feet from sole to toenail, slammed down upon buildings like asteroids making fiery impact. The streets were choked with a cacophony of chaos, of fleeing Bas and falling rubble. Smoke spread swiftly. Whis walked on slowly, savoring the aftertaste of Bebi-Sonny’s vapid cooking.
Ahead, a winding road, paved and bathed in the shade of squeezed buildings, drifted from sight, ushering with it the various aromas of smoked meat and native spices and savory sauces. Whis was drawn to it at once – surely this tucked-away little street was where the hidden, universally-acclaimed cuisine of Bas lurked. He had been to three other cities already; none of their best efforts had been worth retaining a thought over.
An explosion shattered every window. A fat little Bas was flung into a wall ahead of Whis, splattering his dark blood on the sun-radiating metal. Whis hummed to himself, anticipating the tastes of those dishes he could almost smell. Stepping around a pothole and a pile of gore, the Angel watched a Basian bloodculler, a dot of an insect with flame-red wings that gave off a terse buzzing sound, circle the air with angry impotence. It landed on his nose and though he jerked his head, it refused to move. Not wasting any time, it extended its needle suckers, four-pronged like the penises of Earth echidnas.
Whis shrieked and jumped in the air, dropping the business card. The bloodculler was gone. “Whew,” he sighed, remaining in midair. Rising smoke from the alleyway made his mouth grow wet. A shrill cry pierced the air as another row of houses collapsed to Whis’ left.
It was only after the monster stepped over the alleyway, decimating the surrounding buildings, that Whis perceived the creature’s destructive presence. It had the same putrid grey-green skin as the planet’s natives. Its snout was bony and long, mangled with barbed teeth. Its cracked flesh was dryer than that of the Bas, though. And it didn’t have four eyes – it had six.
The monstrous animal stood more than twice as tall as the most ambitious of Guulbeyche Sanor’s primitive skyscrapers. With a petulant kick, it decimated half a dozen buildings, no doubt killing hundreds. Below Whis, a pack of wild-eyed Bas came running by carrying a woman bleeding and moaning low.
He landed delicately in the crater where once he had smelled those savory-sweet delights. The smoke that now rose from the rubble-strewn ground was full of ash and dust and boiled blood. It was at that moment that Whis began to feel something bubbling up in his throat – a pain so intoxicating and simultaneously draining that he could no longer ignore it: he was famished. Lord Beerus’ attendant pressed three fingers to his throat, as if he could push the hunger back down from whence it came.
“Somebody heeeeeeeelp!!” a woman screamed as she ran by in a blood-soaked blur.
“I’m just an innocent bystander!” a man grunted in a puddle of his own urine not more than three feet away from Whis. “P-p-please…” he muttered to Whis with pleading eyes. “Ya gotta do something… please… help us!”
Whis found the man ugly to look upon, and indeed, he felt nothing but dull, impending starvation as he rose over the smoking ruin of a city. The monster shook the ground with every step. The screams in the distance were becoming less and less frequent.
“Very well then,” Whis said to himself, looking up to the green-sunk sky, his finger passing over the smooth polish of his ring in a deliberate, compulsory manner that he had kept with him since childhood. Sighing, Whis kicked off into the air. “I guess Lord Beerus and I will have to make a return trip sometime in the future…”
He was thinking about how rude this species had been to him, how un-accommodating of his needs they were. The realization roused no feeling in Whis either, and he forgot it the moment the sky went black. Heat came next, rancid and heavy, poisonously musty. It took Whis approximately a third of a second to realize he had been caught in the monster’s deep maw.
Whis popped himself out of the mouth which he no longer desired to reside in. The beast howled, clutching at its torn snout with two huge, clawed hands. Dark purple blood spouted in long arcing spires.
“That wasn’t very nice.” Whis allowed himself only the minutest of expressions.
“What the Bas?!” the monster yelled, spitting blood. Whis yelped. He hadn’t thought for one moment that the monster could talk. “Who the Bas are you?! Graaagghahah, you punched a hole through my nose! How could you be so inconsiderate?!”
Below, a crowd was starting to gather. Terrified though they were of the gargantuan hunter, they began to cheer for Whis, to root him on, almost as if he were a superhero. Their interspersed cries of praise were, alas, lost in the wind.
One voice did drift up to Whis’ ears. “Gojita… Gojita…!” an old Bas was wailing at the top of his ancient lungs.
“Aha! That’s me alright,” Gojita boasted proudly, wiping blood from his snout and jumping in the air. As he landed, the spectators nearest him (that would be all of the downtown residents) were pummeled to piles of meat by the shock wave. “I’m the King of Festoon Swamp! No one can match my power! I’m king of the world!!”
Gojita leapt with glee again, this time decimating what remained of downtown Guulbeyche Sanor. “Tell me,” Whis asked politely, barely raising his voice against the wind. “What’s the best place to find some delicious food around these parts? I’m starved, you see. I can’t help but think–”
“All I do is eat people!” Gojita bellowed epically.
“Oh, I see. In that case…”
In that case, these over-hyped backwater swamp people wouldn’t get a second chance. Whis teleported behind the huge monster’s head. From this vantage, Gojita looked to Whis not much unlike a dinosaur, which one could find on Earth and no less than three dozen other planets for no other reason than that the Supreme Kais were exceptionally lazy at their life-creating endeavors. He wondered if Gojita had fallen into a radioactive swamp, or if he was a child of the Farthest Ones. Either way, Whis found that he very much liked the look of this one – the grey-green skin, scaled and dried, with robust rippling muscles underneath. It was almost heavenly to that fine gentleman, and his mouth began to water.
“I’m over here,” Whis said absentmindedly. He had just been thinking about installing a shower in Lord Beerus’ house now that old bath seat Beerus had so liked to use was growing old and rickety. “You’ll have to be faster than that if you want to eat me.”
Gojita unloaded a variety of colorful profanities at Whis. He reminded the attendant that he was the King of Bas, as triumphant a statement as that could possibly be; he swore he would kill and eat Whis with ease; he made fun of Whis’ slender physique and hairdo; he even called Whis’ staff something profane.
That last insult was the final straw. No one insults Whis’ staff, at least not to his face. He once caught the last God of Destruction, a peon named Ulrick Skulltamer Peabody II, playing dress up with his staff in the bathroom, putting on a spectacle of a show for the mirror. Whis had just gotten back from Atjoh, where he had overdone it a little bit on the native Nyaho curry, and he was needing the planet’s singular bathroom all for himself, and quickly. It was how he spent his nights out sometimes, alone in that bathroom. The feeling those memories made him remember caused Whis to shudder. Finding Peabody in there had been a shock, and shortly afterwards, Whis had found himself unable to get a certain phrase off his tongue.
Before creation comes destruction.
“Dinner creation chop, nyah!” Whis spoke softly, launching himself into the beast’s snout lazily. And yet, such was his strength that even that much of a showing of emotion was enough to rend the air and melt the water vapor around them. A light overcame the monster as he was engulfed by the force of energy Whis exuded from the side of his slender hand. Heat followed, as did the sound of an explosion. Whis was lost in the muck of it all, sinking further and further into the creature’s huge skull. He felt the moment Gojita died; like a flickering of light, a spasm contorted through his slippery, slimy, raw-smelling innards, and Whis popped out the other side.
Guulbeyche Sanor burned red from the force of his attack. In fact, to call it a city would be a great disservice now. A ruin of a settlement once populated by millions of Bas stretched before him in a fiery, rubble-blown crater. Nothing remained of Gojita except for the guts that had so rudely splattered themselves on Whis’ body. He dared a small taste of some part of Gojita that had landed on the tip of his nose. Retching, Whis immediately spat it out. It needed salt.
He wondered vaguely what the Bas onlookers had thought as the flames had descended upon them, turning them to ash only to be blown away in the wind. But Whis’ belly rumbled; he knew it was time to move on, and not just from this city.
“Goddamn Myurial, goddamn!” A space pirate stumbled through the archway, clutching a wounded leg. Blood the color of ink had laid a jagged trail behind him. “Now we ain’t playin’ no more, now we ain’t playin’ no more!”
“Ahh, get back here Shyundibble!” a raspy, carefree voice hollered from down the hall. The other space pirate came running after the first, pulling up her pants and not so much as bestowing a half-glance of recognition in Whis’ direction. In her hand, she held a bottle with a brightly colored straw poking out. She sucked at it hopelessly as she ran.
The streets of Old Lipanto were usually vacant these days. As the old saying went, No children walk the streets of Old Lipanto anymore. To Whis, that statement meant only one thing: this place wouldn’t be serving any candy. That was alright with him; he didn’t have nearly as much of a sweet tooth as Lord Beerus did.
And there it was, tucked away between a pawn shop and an out-of-business branch of the Galactic Bank: Old Sal’s Berry Shack. It seemed that on the eve of every grand awakening of Lord Beerus the Destroyer, Whis found himself again standing in the middle of the idle streets of Old Lipanto. How Old Sal’s Berry Shack managed to remain in business was far beyond Whis’ capabilities of understanding. He never asked questions; he simply told the cashier his order, the same one every time, and left.
That’s how it usually went. Sometime back around the 500 Age, one of the cooks had burnt his wingleberries, and from that failure, Whis had issued a threat: if they ever screwed up his order again, Lord Beerus would be making a stop by Old Sal’s Berry Shack himself. Whis loved Lipanto because this is where he came to get his favorite vats of helium, so he would never dare to destroy the whole world like he had threatened with Bas.
A craven-faced Brench manned the register when Whis entered. Unsurprisingly, no one else was in the little tucked away shoppe. The sweet scent of roasted nungus berries filled Whis’ nostrils as he entered; he sighed pleasantly. When the Brench saw him, even though the two of them had never met before, he immediately started to tremble in terror so overpowering that he was barely barely able to suppress it with the numbing power of his social mask. The cracks in the cashier’s personality were immediately perceptible to Whis, but utterly uninteresting to unravel.
Hunger was all Whis felt. He placed the order – the same as always: one bunch of Aunt Paupi Honna’s spiced wingleberries, extra crispy; three orders of kawakuberry curry laid over Lipantan grilled vegetables, topped with thrice-smoked vekshi wing (one for the road, the others to share with Lord Beerus when he woke); seventeen orders of Lipantan blood curd; three orders of imported spiced Ualir horn; seven orders of mild wingleberry jam (Lord Beerus, for all his valor, lacked the gustatory fortitude required to sample the spicier native varieties). This was highway robbery at its finest, and noble Whis was no less pleased with himself than he was with the cashier as he stood for seven minutes and thirty-two second awaiting his order to be completed.
He wondered vaguely what was taking so long, standing awkwardly alone with the cashier, who eyes were fixed upon his contraption of operation as if it held any capabilities of retreat. Poking limply at some of the buttons, he pretended to be busy. Whis rubbed at his ring absentmindedly, wondering if he would have to destroy this place after all. Last time he’d come, they had completed his order in seven minutes flat. But as his fingers extended in the same tired motion, Whis became coldly aware that his ring was gone.
Like flashes of light, his memories flooded back in spinning frames. He wondered vaguely whether or not he had lost it during his fight with Gojita. If so, there was a lot of rubble he would have to dig through to find it. The prospect of that sounded altogether unsavory to Whis, who was at this very second dying of hunger. He sighed, snapped his fingers, and a new ring materialized in midair. He placed it on his finger.
Thirteen minutes and forty-two seconds. The cashier, mumbling, his tanned orange skin slicked over with sweat, handed Whis the steaming bag of food. The angel’s gaze was withering, but he was too hungry to do anything else. Turning sharply away from the young man, Whis walked out the door, the bell tinkling with a lonely goodbye at his back.
He didn’t need to do that. He could have teleported home instantaneously. It’s kind of like how Whis hadn’t needed to fly into the sky when he had been back on Bas in order to get the monster to eat him. He could have teleported then too, but sometimes it’s best to forget these things and chalk them up to authorial incompetence.
But out the door he went. Whis sometimes didn’t know what he was doing; sometimes it seemed as if his body operated independently of his thoughts and desires, like he was some paralyzed passenger trapped inside some biological vessel working towards its own primitive ends. Hunger clawed passionately in the deep of his throat. He was already rummaging in the plastic bag for a snack on the way.
“Stop right there!” It was a giant robot made out of old plates.
Whis hardly heard him. He tore open a neatly-wrapped box and guzzled a carton of the blood curd, which was so gelatinous that it retained the shape of its travel box as it slid down the Angel’s throat.
“Hey, I’m talking to you! I’m going to kill you! How do you like that, huh?! I’m going to rip you in half! I’m the sheriff ‘round these parts! I’m bad luck for you, buddy! I… am… justice!!”
Whis tasted one of the Ualir horns. They say an Uttovelm can only be granted the title of ganglord after he’s hunted and killed a mythical Ualir by himself. Eating the meat in front of his crew, in a great feast, just before the ganglord’s show of strength in those famous wrestling bouts, was a rite of passage for that culture. And yet, as Whis tasted it, he felt no more authoritative, no more manly or powerful. It was nice and sweet, almost like candy. The meat from inside the horn unraveled like freshly-cooked pasta onto the attendants tongue.
He fell to his knees on the sidewalk, for all the indignity it brought him. Whis simply couldn’t deal with how tasty that Ualir horn had been. He cried and smacked his lips and reached his hands to the sky. He began to wiggle back and forth, as if he were in the throws of his basest passion. “Oh, it’s so delicious! It’s amazing!” Whis sang, his voice echoing in the empty street. And he began rummaging in his bag again, like an old woman looking for her checkbook.
“Did you kill him?!” an alien shouted uncertainly, rushing out of Old Sal’s Berry Shack, nearly tripping himself up in his impatience. “Dishmaster Supreme, Scion of Demons, did you kill that stupid fucker?!”
“Negative,” Dishmaster Supreme stuttered in a robotic tone. Coughing, he adjusted his vocal patterns to line up with those from Space Austria. “No, it’s not true! Who is your daddy, and what does he do?”
“Iaahahaeeeh!” The alien screeched as he came into view of Whis. But Whis was still in the throes of ecstasy, waving his arms around as if he were some giant inflatable balloon man.
“It’s soooo delicious…!” Whis moaned.
The alien crept up to him like a space-badger looking for some really spoiled garbage – you know, the kind you have dive head-first into the dumpster to find. “Did you… he’s… what’s going on?! Did you break him, Dishmaster Supreme? Did you hit him so hard he lost all his wits?”
“Nuaaaah!” the errant robotic replied.
Whis said nothing. He was so happy to not be hungry anymore. The alien snapped his fingers in front of Whis. Not even one thing materialized out of nowhere. This guy was just a regular pleb like all the rest. “Hey! You there?!” Whis was savoring the taste of the food. “Dishmaster Supreme, do it, do it now! Kill him! End him! Crush his spleen!!”
The alien was spitting all over the place. It was gross. Who actually likes that kind of stuff (in Whis’ mind’s eye, he saw, suddenly, a vat of isopropyl alcohol pouring over a bowl of lettuce)? His eyes were bloodshot and his fingers liked to point. He wore the veritable yellow-faded suit of a dishboy.
“Master, please change the weather to cold for this proceed,” Dishmaster complained robotically.
“Fine, fine, I’ll do it! If I do, will you kill him?”
The dishboy pulled a remote control out of his dishwasher’s coat, because every good mad scientist needs an all-purpose remote control to do any crazy thing they want. This remote was a fine specimen: it had one huge red button and a small antenna on one side. The dishboy slammed his finger down upon the button and instantly, from all around, snow began to fall.
The practical explanation for how such a thing could happen is not relevant. At the first sign of snow, Dishmaster Supreme, polishing some of his most cherished dishes, got excited. “Alright, alright, now I’m ready to be served!”
“Daah… Dishmaster Supreme… my most advanced creation yet… you are my only hope!” the dishboy thought to himself with the unflowing dramatism of most mad scientists. It was amazing how seriously he took himself. “Knock his head off, Dishy, you’re my best one!!”
Dishmaster Supreme loved it when his master called him his best one. It was an excellent thing to call Dishmaster Supreme, especially when it was snowing.
Whis didn’t notice the cold. He was muttering to himself about how much he liked tasty food, and it was becoming obscene. His fists punched the sky; he wobbled back and forth. Tears streamed down his cheeks. Dishmaster Supreme took that moment to reach his foe – that moment when Whis chose to punch the air again in pure, unbridled joy.
Around two thousand five hundred forty-three dinner plates shattered at once. Every window burst; a car alarm in the distance went off (Whis found it increasingly odd that these aliens too would have cars). Having felt himself touch an empty dish, Whis was brought back to reality. Looking up, the snow melting in his hair, Whis saw what lay before him – a trailing gash through the city that had left hundreds of buildings partially or totally obliterated. There was no sign of Dishmaster Supreme except for one slender dagger of a milky-white dinner plate lying off to the side.
The alien dishboy stood next to Whis, his mouth agape. Whis stood up swiftly, like a working space-badger after coital emission has been achieved. He was all business now. Looking around, he noticed the dishboy standing next to him. “Oh, what are you doing here?” Whis asked, as if he had never perceived the man before.
“I-I… I have worked here for three hundred years… I used to be the head chef…! That was… until a certain customer returned my wingleberries, complaining they were burnt! They weren’t burnt!” he cried, tears pouring down his face, mixing with his sweat and thus making the man look altogether repugnant. “They were just a little crispy! Don’t you know the difference?!”
Whis fought a sliver of Ualir horn meat that had gotten stuck between his teeth. Several buildings, barely surviving the impact of the last attack, slowly swayed and toppled over. The rising ash obscured the expanse of Old Lipanto, which usually could be seen in its near entirety from this spot, as the rest of the floating cloud city was below the hill they were standing on now.
“I’ve spent the last two hundred years fearing every day that you would show up… fearing that you would destroy us for one minor mistake… for…”
“My my,” Whis said warmly, smiling. “You come from a remarkably long-lived species. Look at you.”
And with that, the attendant teleported back to Lord Beerus’ planet.
Not many people could stand the same job for three hundred years. Dr. Silius was one of many. He’d once been a busboy, then a chef, then a head chef, and then a dishwasher again. This was not unlike the cycle of life, and if that’s one thing Silius didn’t know about, well it fuckin’ was. Silius hailed from a long line of ambidextrous space hospital chairmen, and from that rich history of meritocracy at its finest, he had broken away. At first, he had wanted to be a movie star, and he had been quite successful at it, only no one would hire him. Then, he had decided to become a chef. That career choice had been more generally supported by his family, of which every single member of his family dating back to the proto-sentient days, still lived. His species was naturally immortal and, coincidentally, there was only one extant bloodline of his species, so no one else got to experience the joys of eternal life except for Dr. Silius and his family.
Sometimes, though, it made for awkward situations. For example, his fortieth generational grandmother had detested his passion for cooking and stopped sending him birthday money. He had used her in his sixth experiment, which had resulted in her being brutally maimed by a horde of intoxicated space lemurs. But chef he had been for a time, and on Lipanto, one of the seats of the Planet Trade Organization’s power, the very planet where the peace treaty to end the great civil war had been signed, he had made a modest name for himself – the kind a fourth or fifth son would be very happy to achieve. But Silius was the heir to the Uiq species. He was the firstborn of his parents’ loins, and thus, he was held to certain lofty expectations.
Dr. Silius was not a man, noble though he was, handsome though he thought he could be, who enjoyed being subjected to the whims of others. That is entirely irrelevant to the next anecdote from his life, but it still needed to be said. After he became the head chef of Old Sal’s Berry Shack, Silius had begun testing the customers. Customers weren’t frequent in the near desolation that was Old Lipanto, but still, he got to try what he wanted every now and then. At first, it had been just slipping a bit of experimental powder into the berry frosting. Then, he had started injecting more potent liquids into his customers’ food.
What he injected, Silius made himself. In his off time, he liked to experiment with matter and create all sorts of things any mad scientists would deem worthy of research. Being mad, he did not detect his own madness, and therefore, he never saw what he did as anything other than harmless fun.
One man died, but they couldn’t prove it had been food poisoning, so Sal’s Berry Shack had been spared litigation. Three or four others had been given a serum that Silius called ‘Carnage Xtreme’. Silius was the kind of dude who liked to hang pictures of gnarly dudes engaged in high-risk intergalactic sports throughout his room. Thus his intellectual life was married with his everyday life. It was a match made in heaven.
The ‘Carnage Xtreme’ produced a different reaction in each subject. One man had gone insane and attempted to cannibalize his best mate. There’s nothing funny about cannibalism, so moving on… another man lost all his hair and his sight though his sexual organ grew three times its size that day. A woman who had come by not even a year prior, his last customer tested on this liquid, had violently and spontaneously combusted on her ride back to her homeworld.
In his lab, Dr. Silius stood. As always, he was alone. A faint green light saturated the room. His skin, normally a dull rubbery blue color, was darkened, sharpening his features in the low light. The walls were bathed in the green artificial light emanating from the screen of his computer monitor. The vital signs of three test subjects stuck like black scars to three of the corners of that massive, wall-sized video monitor.
At least one of them was still alive. The others’ vital signs were overwhelming. It was easier for him to let go.
“Scan the system again,” he said.
“Scanning… done. Three life forms detected.”
“Scan again,” he said wearily. It was anticipation of the event that was everything to him; as he waited, his blood ran hot, and he found he could hardly sit down. Ever since that day – the first day of winter in the 503 Age – he had harbored fantasies of murdering the fool who’d made him a dishwasher again.
“Never again, urraah!” Dr. Silius shouted, raising his wrist. In the dim light, he admired the muscles he had developed around his wrists from washing all those goddamn dirty dishes.
“Doctor, I must remind you that Super Grandma remains at the front door, waiting for you.”
“Fine.” The fourth square of his monitor flickered to a live feed of the gate leading into his compound. This planet, Lot #457, was a rental, a real fixer-upper. But at his salary, Silius could scarce afford better. His landlady was his Super Grandmother, which is to say, she was his thirty-seventh generational grandmother. A cold, money-grubbing woman, she was as unrelentingly harsh as a Culani tapeworm. “Wait.” Silius sucked in a breath. The vitals on the last living test subject were shooting to dangerous levels. “What’s going on with saucegirl #3?”
“The third saucegirl is currently experiencing total-body shock due to the agents you injected into her bloodstream, Doctor. There is a 95% chance of complete organ failure, as with the other two patients.”
He glanced at saucegirl #2’s vital signs. They were all at zero. Printed below the name in curling red font: Cause of death: total catastrophic organ failure.
The walk kept his anxiety at bay. Rushing blood has no time to ferment in its own intoxications.
“Hello Super Grandma.”
“Super, eh? I thought you had outgrown your childish ways, Silius.”
A chiding remark left his neck perspiring. A flash of thoughts, violent and desperate, zipped through that dark, comforting space behind his eyes. “How much do I owe you, Super Gran–”
“I told you to stop calling me that!”
She hit him so hard that his glasses fell off his misshapen blue face and half-shattered on the ground, because if both lenses broke, then Silius wouldn’t be able to see anything at all, and progressing the narrative any further would become unbearably complicated. He grunted, mumbling apologies to quell the scathing wrath of Super Grandma. She was about 2 feet tall, her skin so ravaged and shriveled up that she appeared not unlike a badly decomposing corpse. He feared her more than he feared anything else.
“Listen, Su – can we do this later? I’m expecting someone.”
“Oh, a girl is it, eh?” His Super Grandma had always been very nosy in his personal affairs. Silius was well-practiced in dodging her advances.
“No, not at all.”
“Yeh, eh? What’s that supposed to mean? Don’t tell me you’re giving up already!”
“Father and Mother haven’t produced a sister with whom I can procreate with to continue the singular bloodline of our species that has been rigidly maintained for more than one thousand years.”
“I’ve never met your parents before,” Super Grandma spat with disgust.
There was a terrifying rarity to youth that Dr. Silius saw in his grandmother’s face. “Alright, how much do I owe you?” Instead of creating a fake space currency, or being so vague as to be utterly worthless, Whis chose this moment to inject himself into the scene. Dr. Silius ejaculated in fright, “Ahh, old man Sal’s dusty brownberries! There he is!”
He ran. He ran as fast as he could, and that wasn’t very fast at all. Like any self-respecting predator, Whis let him go. The thrill of the hunt lies in the emotional build up experienced in the anticipatory phase. Release is the death of passion.
Dr. Silius was a peerless genius. He had once dated a girl named Pierlo. He brought this all down upon himself. All those family get-togethers skipped, all those holidays kept in isolation here on his rundown little dump of a world where he experimented on losers who had been stupid enough to visit Old Sal’s Berry Shack… it could have been prevented, if he had been of a different chemical makeup.
He’d named the latest batch ‘Superior Epic Carnage Xtreme of Untold Power’. The blood roaring in his ears, the good doctor realized then how far overboard he’d gone. He burst through the doors, deep in his lab, leading towards the test subjects’ quarters.
In a frantic rush, spinning lights, fleeing sounds, the taste of sweat, the feeling of blood beneath his skin, Silius let out a hoarse cry: “Release the prisoner!!”
“Confirmation code required, Doctor,” his AI replied.
“Don’t you swear in my presence, heathen!” Super Grandmother complained loudly. She coughed and lit a stick of Nubasan Nil, inhaling the spiced vapor with well-practiced technique. “Now you calm down quick, ya hear me?”
Whis was right behind him, holding Super Grandma in his arms. The sight of it horrified Dr. Silius.
“Please try again,” the AI droned helpfully. “Confirmation code required, Doctor.”
He felt their eyes. “M-my… password?” Sweat it hard, sweat it cool brah. If you hate yourself, why don’t you hate-marry yourself? “Fine. It’s hambonelover129.”
“Stop joshing us,” his elder grandmama wheezed, hacking violently, nearly spitting out her lung as she keeled over while saliva fell in long strands from her second, retractable mouth.
Whis clapped his hands enthusiastically. “Oh, is this where the galactic buffet is? I saw the sign–”
Silius had not known how to lure Whis to him; he hadn’t know where the freak resided, nor how to contact him. No one he knew seemed to have heard of Whis before either. He was like a ghost. So Silius had to draw him out from the shadows. He had mortgaged half his assets to rent the advertisements. Of course, there had been several other hungry aliens who had also been drawn here, and Silius had dealt with them depending on their size, good looks, and gender. In the dark, he liked to crouch behind his bed and sing to the monsters lurking underneath.
“Kill him, Super Extreme Kabuto!!” he yelled, pressing the biggest button on his one-button remote. “Destroy that blue man for your master!!”
There was a tube full of greenish liquid that looked almost like a Planet Trade Organization rejuvenation tank. In it, a dark mass swirled – there was only a small window near the middle. The AI screamed in pleasure. The door swung open, spilling the liquid out all over the floor. Dr. Silius, having not anticipated this, became drenched up to his socks; Super Granny was swept away in the foaming green tide.
A shrimpy little thing fell out of the tank, rolling on the ground for a moment before stopping. “Kill him, bastard!” Silius screamed maniacally, kicking the animal at Whis like a ball. As it flew into Whis’ cheek, it uncurled from its shell, revealing a skinny, pale woman with three pairs of breasts and a face like a black hole. Her chin was the size of Whis’ entire head. There were two weird indentations in the brownish shell on her back, sunken like bony eye sockets.
Kabuto shook violently and threw herself at Whis, slapping him with her manly chin. It glowed crimson in the bright, artificial laboratory light. Tables and metal carts strewn with paperwork littered the room. The experimental hybrid was thrust from Whis upon impact, flopping hard against one cart, sending paperwork into the air. Silius’ heart skipped a beat. This was becoming highly unprofessional.
“Damn, he strong though.” Super Extreme Kabuto scratched dispassionately at her magnificent, absolutely sensational chin. “That horndog could’ve killed me right here, doc. I’m gonna need some juice.”
“Juice?!” Silius had never spoken to Super Extreme Kabuto before, and as such, he had no idea if she was a serious person, a whimsical person, or clinically psychotic.
“Yo, that black goop man. I need all dat juice!!”
“Is that the buffet?” Whis interjected, holding up one finger with a supreme showing of elegance. Silius felt that cold sweat, that pure vanilla. “I’m starving!” Whis sang, as if he hadn’t listened to a single word Silius had said. “Oh, I hope it tastes delicioussssss!! Mmm, how wonderful!”
“Yo, the juice, doc, the juice. I need all dat juice!”
He turned to the wall, stacked high with big glass tubes of near-solid inky black liquid. Once, in the distant past, Silius had dropped several thousand canisters of that stuff on a species of humanoid beings, rendering every one of them suddenly and irrevocably extinct. Ah, those were the good old days.
An elderly pubmaster down Gherro Street used to sell the stuff for an unreasonable sum of money. He called it an aphrodisiac, but it was really something entirely different. Because he was a genius, and for the sake of plot convenience, Silius’ mad scientist capabilities allowed him to reproduce as much of the goop as he wanted to.
He ran over to the wall, eyeing Whis. The man with the passé staff was picking at something between his teeth. The only time the juice, as it was seemingly to be called from now on (Silius still preferred Superior Epic Carnage Xtreme of Untold Power as it sounded badass, and as long as things sound badass, then you’re cool for thinking of them, at least that’s what his mates from the academy used to tell him, but they’ve been centuries dead), had been used as an aphrodisiac, his date that night, a three-legged bug woman he’d found lurking in the bathroom of some random asteroid fuel stop, had sprouted a second head from the back of her primary head, the head he knew and loved. As she screamed – and it all happened so quickly, poor girl – the second head started to scream too, and the spectacle had so intoxicated Silius that he had fed her to his caecondi (which were of course those blue-finned, flesh-eating fish famously from Arcose). His passion for testing the goop on people had bloomed that night.
Pacing like someone who paces, Super Extreme Kabuto’s fingers trembled and shook violently. Silius tossed her a vial. She tore it open with energy leaking like saliva from her teeth, guzzling down the thick black liquid as if it were partially digested seaweed.
“Now will you kill him?!”
“Man, all dat juice,” Kabuto muttered to herself, wiping her lips. Her breasts shook like sacks of pus, and she promptly threw herself to the ground, wailing like a person who wails.
“Attention please, attention please,” Silius’ AI said over the loudspeakers. “An evolution is in progress.”
“Evolution?” Whis said with mild disinterest. “What about the buffet? I want a buffet!” He pounded his staff on the ground.
“I’ll give you all you can eat… with my fist!” the glowing Kabuto hybrid yelled suddenly. Her body was still aglow, and nothing could be discerned about her new features yet. A tear came to Dr. Silius’ eye. This was all so beautifully dramatic. As she lunged at Whis, she began to cackle. “There is no one in the universe more powerful than me! I am without equal! All dat juice made me into the perfect warrior! I’ll crush you! I’ll show you what a true warrior can achieve!” And she said many more nasty and boastful things, as many others have already said, and we needn’t hear them again, for most such insults have long since grown stale and meaningless in our eyes.
The light faded; standing before Silius now was no longer Super Extreme Kabuto, but something entirely different. Her body was slim and rippled with muscles. For no reason other than it looks mildly alright, she had blue and silver skin with black patterning around her frame. Her legs had extended to the size of stilts; her head had ballooned into a boomerang of biological-armor. And her chin – her chin had come full circle with a blooming of unparalleled beauty, with six or seven bright-born flowers sprouting out from her hard skin. Her hair was white and wavy and godly and her eyes were two shimmering expanses of eternal night. Her body glowed with blue and silver energy, enwrapping her in a godly veil.
“Super Grandma’s pubes…” Silius whispered under his breath. “She’s evolved into Ultimate Legendary Omega Kabutops Supreme!”
She punched him. “Serious punch attack! Yah!” She punched Whis across the mouth. He didn’t flinch. “Mythical Anti-Ki Godfist Supreme!”
The air popped; he could feel the impact of her attack on that trash-person named Whis. Shaking her damn head, Kabutops looked up at Whis with primal fear. Hers was the cowering submission of a space-badger to a pile of rancid vegetable garbage.
“What are you doing?” Whis looked down on her with annoyance. “I’m not going to wait much longer. He stepped away from the genetic monster and turned to Silius. “You look familiar. Aren’t you the one who–”
“Kill him!” Silius shrieked, falling to his knees. Sweat was leaking from his face like tears. “Get rid of him! I can’t stand another nanosecond–”
An explosion rocked the room. Kabutops had thrown an energy ball at Whis’ back, messing up his hair.
Whis stood erect in indignation. “That was very rude!”
“It’s time for Epic Butchering Beast Mode! Raaaaaaaaah!” Light engulfed her again.
“Is it another evolution?” Silius asked the AI.
“Negative, doctor. Ultimate Legendary Omega Kabutops Supreme is merely transforming into her most powerful state: the Epic Butchering Beast Mode. In that form, she is unbeatable, as she will gain unlimited, eternal access to the space-time consortium and will gain the ability to casually break apart Neutron stars with unparalleled ease.”
“Ah… what?! Where’d he go?!” Dr. Silius felt the unpleasant feeling of liquid sloshing around in his socks.
Her skin turned flame-red and black, because those are the two most epic colors, and all her hair fell out. It was epic as shit. Ultimate Legendary Omega Kabutops Supreme roared powerfully; it was so majestic, you could almost hear the guitar solos wailing in the distance. This epic transformation only confirmed for Silius what he had already known: his creation was the most powerful being in the universe. She would easily, ruthlessly, loyally cut down that fool of a blue man with that lazy, shit-shaped hairdo, and this would become the best day of the good doctor’s sad life. He had long since forgotten about Dishmaster Supreme. Ain’t nobody got time for painful thoughts.
Whis returned almost at once, causing Silius to let out a girlish cry again. In her most powerful form, the Kabutops girl’s chin-flowers (now stripped to stems) lit up with glowing energy (anti-ki matter that not even a God could withstand, definitely) and she swung a misshapen claw-hand thingy at Whis.
As her fist made contact with Whis’ skin, she released her energy all over his backside. Looking back at her like some trifling trifle, Whis whispered coldly, “I checked everywhere. There isn’t a galactic-class buffet night planned, is there? There’s hardly any food at all!” He burped mildly, poor fellow. “You lied.” Whis’ eyes found Silius’, and the mad doctor understood. He didn’t have the nerve to scream. “And if there’s one thing you never lie to me about, it’s buffets.”
His chop was savage and nakedly destructive. Kabutops never got a chance to scream – his chop sliced down her face, splitting her eyes, and popping her vocal folds in bloody tatters. As his hand contacted Ultimate Legendary Omega Kabutops Supreme’s heart, fire and light overwhelmed the lab. A great roar of fire filled the air and was gone; as everything grew larger and more violent, the flames spread up and out and mingled black and orange and blue as they cascaded up into the void. Kabutops’ body tore apart into five pieces, violently shattering her epic body armor. As her spinal cord shattered, her ribs pulled themselves calmly from her torso and fractured like melting rainbows.
The ground shook so violently that Silius’ compound shattered apart. Lava spurted up from cracks in the bedrock like weak pulses of blood, smothering everything. Whis’ hand glided through Kabutops’ skull, down towards her chest, like an anti-ki mega super special blade of ki slicing through (yep, you guessed it) space butter. A thousand flames tore down a thousand colors as the planet began to rend itself apart.
The force of Whis’ chop sent a wave of energy containing the scattered remains of Ultimate Legendary Omega Kabutops Supreme in her much-savored Epic Butchering Beast Mode form up towards the deepening sky, a heavenly white spread of energy that seemed only to gain speed the further it sped away from the planet. Kabutops’ body, an uneven pile of gore spreading out in the energy, took no less than three light-years to fully vaporize.
Silius’ planet exploded in bursts – his compound went first, drawing deep fissures in the planet’s crust. As the fissures grew deeper and spread further, it seemed only inevitable that the whole planet would go. New explosions sprung up, consuming the rocky, desolate world with tar-like fire. The explosions grew more frequent; the ground shook and broke apart, and as they coalesced, their power expanding at first in disharmony, the fire rose higher, covering the entire planet in an angry torrent of dancing heat. The planet blew apart violently.
Whis remained. He fixed his hair and rubbed his ring compulsively. In the far-off distance, a star system blinking brightly suddenly grew much brighter and urgent in its flickering. Though he was a good several light-years away, Whis watched stoically as the star system was consumed. One star, its blue-white heat noticeable even from this distance (Whis had impeccable eyesight), immediately began the purifying, self-immolating process of hypernova.
He pulled the ring off his finger; it felt strange and cold and foreign. He tossed it into space, never for a moment wondering where it would end up.
“Eh? Who ate all of the Ualir horns?” Lord Beerus complained. He was bent halfway into the refrigerator, like a miner looking for black gold. “I distinctly remember us agreeing on seven orders of Ualir horn, Whis. But it looks like you only brought back three.”
“Oh?” Whis said, trying to sound surprised. He wasn’t as good at that as he had hoped. “Are you sure you haven’t miscounted again?”
Lord Beerus’ teleportation made a faint popping sound. He appeared in front of Whis, who had been admiring his eyebrows in a mirror in the kitchen. “One. Two. Three.”
There were clearly three packages of Ualir horn in the kitty’s purple paw. “Well, well, Lord Beerus,” Whis said warmly. “I must say, I am impressed by your ability to count.”
He seemed to have a brain aneurysm then. “I-I… you…!”
Purple flames tickled the God of Destruction’s irises. He let the packages fall to the floor; one split open, and the Ualir horn rolled out onto the carpet
“Enough!” Whis said with a little bit of force. All it took was a simple lurching of his shoulder forward. His hand shot at Lord Beerus’ throat, hitting him hard with a surprise side chop. The God of Destruction fell over, unconscious.
Sighing, Whis slung Beerus over his shoulder and picked up the fallen Ualir horn. Placing it back in the box, he returned to the fridge, which Beerus had so rudely left open. Feeling generous, Whis placed one box back into the fridge. “One for you, and two for me!” he sang carelessly.
Taking the other two boxes under his arm, Whis flung Beerus into the bed located in the corner of the room. With the flick of his fingers, Beerus’ clothes changed to those of his sleepy-time hibernation pajamas. Whis was magic and shit, but sometimes he managed even to impress himself.
He bit his lip to prevent himself from smiling too broadly. Opening the first box, he pulled a fresh Ualir horn out and picked at his teeth, returning to the mirror, where he would be able to watch the finest show of all.
- This story's name references One Punch Man.
- As of writing this commentary, One Chop Man is my longest one-shot. There are two others, Insatiable (which is already longer than OCM in its first draft) and Killing General Copper (which is not yet, but only 4/7 scenes are written and it's at like 7000 words), that could eclipse it within three months of me writing this.
- I suppose I chose Planet Bas because I wanted to delve into Guldo's backstory a bit. I hate Guldo, but I have a fascination with him. This was not obvious to me before I did several of the more recent anthologies.
- I don't much like the Earth-centric portrayal of food in Dragon Ball (foods from other planets suck). That's boring. With that said, Planet Bas is a dreadful, toady place, and also, one Takkodile seller does not represent the entire planet.
- Cystan the Earth Dragon is one of Geti666's characters. I despise Geti and so satirized him with the Takkodile seller a bit. If anything, Geti got off easy there.
- I don't think Guldo knew what scones were when he said that. He probably would have died had he eaten those plasma sticks.
- This story was written before it was revealed that the angels can't just kill people willy-nilly, so a few of Whis' thoughts are extremely reckless. They weren't meant to be, of course.
- The Guldo cameo was fun to write. Having various canon characters run into each other, who never interact in canon, is always something I try to do in my stories, no matter how minor the encounter.
- I was unsure if angels could die of starvation in Dragon Ball, so I tried to write Whis' hunger pains as vaguely as possible for that. He could just be giving into desire.
- Bringing up the time taboo with Guldo was a really cool moment. To this day, I am unsure if Guldo is breaking the taboo or not. Nobody seems to have a problem with Hit doing his time techniques, but he's not affecting time for others in the same way Guldo is, so it's not a one-to-one comparison. I would still hazard to believe that Guldo is in fact being taboo with his mutant ability.
- The framed diplomas thing was based on how doctors do that. I find it a bit pretentious and unnecessary. I mean it's not like anyone ever inspects those diplomas to see if they come from good schools and aren't faked. Also, this continues me bashing Geti, for the guy that gets Whis' attention is the God of Food, something that Geti has of course created for his shitpile of a universe. I didn't just want to mock that idea, it had to be mocked. It's simply too shit to sit back and do nothing about.
- Yamabulla probably does not have the vapors, he was just a figment of Geti's mind (satirized of course).
- The old lady line was inspired by a man calling my father "ma'am" on the phone once, and it was just about the funniest goddamn thing ever for me at the time. My father, to his credit, didn't even acknowledge it, which I liked quite a bit.
- Instincting State is a nonsense transformation inspired by Geti666. I quite like how I channeled Geti's muse in this opening section. There are a lot of wicked cool epic characters and transformations.
- Chef Yamabulla's ultimate treat was flavored with himself. He killed himself when he jumped in that boiling pot of broth. With that said, I think it was worth it, as meat always adds flavor, and when it slow-cooks for, say, fifty or fifty-two hours before someone realizes that he killed himself, that allows the flavor to truly unlock itself, which leads to Chef Yamabulla entering his Instincting State as people consume him by the spoonful.
- Yukio Mishima killed himself via seppuku because he was gay (or possibly bisexual, but I am less likely to believe this given the novels of his that I've read that). What a painful way to die. His novels were pretty good though, and perhaps an influence on Girl, because they were so filled with thematic tension of his gayness and how much he despaired over being unable to get off to women. More on that in the next anthology, though.
- Like Mishima, Yamabulla wasted his life away. Whis couldn't even swallow his eye because it was so bad. What a waste of several decades of resources being spent on growing that Bas. The patented KV nihilism, laughing in the face of hopelessness, comes out in Yamabulla's character, I think.
- "It was precisely at that moment, precisely as limits, released in a gruff, humid exhalation of living breath, made its tremulous presence known and for a moment persisted, that a shadow descended over the Guulbeyche Sanor. Glee popped and bounced through the roar the pierced the air, its staying power far grander than any Legendary Super Bas could hope to muster in a thousand breaths." - this paragraph got suddenly more eloquent than the preceding prose. I was messing around with the concept of motion, of starting and stopping, of slowing and quickening, here. Aside from that, the overall eloquence does hearken back to a more old-timey KV style of writing that I don't employ too much anymore.
- The space monster attacked so suddenly and with such devastation so as to mimic the style of introducing new villains in One Punch Man.
- Whis is not supposed to involve himself in the affairs of mortals until they are directly related to himself. I like the detached role he plays here, simply focusing on finding the best cuisine in Bas before that monster destroys the planet, rather than fighting off the beast.
- "A fat little Bas was flung into a wall ahead of Whis, splattering his dark blood on the sun-radiating metal. Whis hummed to himself, anticipating the tastes of those dishes he could almost smell." - these two sentences illustrate well one of the core themes of this story.
- I tried my best to show the destruction of Gullbechye Sanor, and the horror inflicted upon its residents in opposition to Whis' detached narcissism. All he wants to do is eat, but can you blame him? If he stepped in without a good reason he'd die. Can't have that. In that tension, there is a desperation to his existence, even though he is not a character who has a developing personality.
- Whis' ring is only mentioned twice in the first section, but it is extremely significant (Sorbet finding it is a crucial point in universal Dragon Ball history). I tried not to really draw attention to it the best I could, but it had to be mentioned so that when Whis later realizes that it's missing, we know what the hell he's talking about.
- Whis only fights the monster after it attempts to swallow him whole. A key detail, that, which keeps him alive.
- The monster's physiology gives some vague implication to it being native to Bas, but that is not necessarily true.
- Using "Mind of a Beast" by the Glitch Mob was also in the style of One Punch Man, which tends to have these epic songs going on during the not-so-epic battles. The Glitch Mob is an amazing band/composer (idk which) and I was big into them at the time. Still am, too.
- Having the monster be able to talk is very much in the style of One Punch Man, rather than being a monster like Hirudegarn. Even Whis is surprised it can talk, which is a nod to that.
- Gojita is based on Gojira, but with me also thinking about Gogeta and how funny the combination was (however irrelevant it actually was).
- Festoon Swamp sounds like a place on Ratchet's homeworld, from Ratchet & Clank, but I'm not sure there were any swamps on that desert world in the games.
- "“All I do is eat people!” Gojita bellowed epically." - perhaps the parody is too on-the-nose here.
- I believe this is the only story that mentions the Farthest Ones by name. Their milky-white thrones also appear in His Majesty's Pet. Not sure if they will ever appear in any story of mine or not. Big mystery to me at this time, but you never know. But to answer Whis' obviously facetious question, Gojita is not the offspring of the Farthest Ones.
- I believe Ulrick Skulltamer Peabody II's name is somewhat based on the name of a character from Skyrim.
- "It was how he spent his nights out sometimes, alone in that bathroom." - this is a reference to me having sex with my Bad Dragon dildos quite frequently on weekends home from school. Those were good times. They fucked me just how I liked it.
- It's implied that Whis killed Ulrick, but I don't think that actually happened. He would've been erased for that.
- The way Whis kills Gojita is much in the style of One Punch Man. However, I wanted to focus on the absolute moment that the beast died, for that was something that only someone as perceptive as Whis could pick up on. It's the little thematic things like that, colored and surrounded by descriptions of guts and mayhem and a dying city, that was a hallmark of my style at this point in 2017.
- The Bas for the most part die even though Whis killed the monster, for he did not step in soon enough to save most of them.
- I had gotten the idea for the opening of the second scene before I had completed the first scene. I even wrote it out so as to not forget it. The idea was to have a developed backstory between two random space pirates having sex, but not showcasing them for very long. In this case, Myurial clearly hit Shyundibble with a ki blast while they were having sex, probably unintentionally, causing their drama to spill out into the streets of Lipanto. An excellent start to the scene if I do say so myself.
- The Galactic Bank having an out-of-business branch in Lipanto raises many questions. It might have been true that they had dealt with the PTO in years prior in a more close-knit way than at present. Perhaps it is a relic of a more distant past, before Icer conquered the planet.
- I think Whis likes to inhale large quantities of helium because he can't suffocate on the stuff.
- I've got to say, I feel for that cashier. Whis is really being a bitch with how he treats that store. They could go broke just from his orders alone. This is one of the fun parts about writing for Whis and Beerus though. They don't care about mortals. They aren't there to be nice guys. Morality in the Dragon Ball universe is quite atypical, I must say.
- I gotta say, I painted Whis in a worse light than I remembered. He's like Pilaf Saga Bulma with how authoritarian he's acting.
- The reason why it took 13 minutes to get that food cooked is only subtly hinted at. I would like to think that the cooks were just as nervous as the cashier and they burnt one or more of the orders, forcing them to start over from scratch. We will never know for certain, though.
- If I could materialize a new ki ring like Whis did, I would not go back for the old one either. Whis, like all angels, is also not super sentimental. This personality trait was especially seen during the Tournament of Power Saga.
- Characters, be they gods or mortals, do not always act in the most efficient ways. Some authors do not realize this. Meticulous planning is good, but if you make characters appear as if they're on rails, moving along in the best, most logical way, there is some lost humanizing feature in how they are portrayed in my opinion.
- "Whis sometimes didn’t know what he was doing; sometimes it seemed as if his body operated independently of his thoughts and desires, like he was some paralyzed passenger trapped inside some biological vessel working towards its own primitive ends." - this is one of the more significant recurring themes in Ikigai. I share this sentiment with Whis, and I only became so acutely aware of it around the end of 2016.
- By the time I wrote this story, I had already developed much of the Uttovelm culture, which allowed me to use them here without needing to make up something new for the one-shot. That was very convenient. However, for other readers, they would be well-served to read The History of the Decline and Fall of the Planet Trade Organization if they haven't already, for it delves into that lore in, as of now, three separate chapters.
- Whis basically came when he tasted that Ualir horn. This is not to say he did. He acts like that when he eats Earth food, too, so it was something I had to do. In some small way, I am mocking him here, I suppose.
- "No, it’s not true! Who is your daddy, and what does he do?" - these are some famous Arnold Schwarzenegger quotes. I think that was obvious from Dishmaster's voice changing to Space Austrian, though.
- Dishmaster Supreme is a concept that is in a few stories of mine, as it's what Hyper Zergling calls himself when he does the dishes. Sometimes the dry humor of HZ really gets to me, and this is one of those times. Also, having a warrior made out of dishes is in the theme of One Punch Man and all its ridiculous concepts for villains.
- Yes'm means yes ma'am. That robot insulted the hell out of that dishwasher.
- There is not, nor will there ever be, an explanation for the dishwasher being able to control the weather to the extent he can.
- Even though Whis accidentally killed Dishmaster Supreme, he was obviously well within his rights to do so, for the bastard was trying to kill him.
- The dishboy's sob story is again in the theme of One Punch Man. How pathetic that he spent hundreds of years as a dishwasher after being a head chef. I mean... go start your own restaurant, dude. And there's always the other option too. Sheesh, what a lame mouth-breather.
- Whis' response to the dishwasher, after all his bravado and emotion, exemplifies his role in this story. He barely cares about any of them, and even his comment is not perhaps the wittiest thing in the world, but it's still smug and it's still elitist and he still doesn't care. This is also evidenced in the fact that there was so much collateral damage to Old Lipanto, but that was Dishmaster Supreme's fault.
- There is a time-skip between the second and third scenes. The third scene takes place sometime after Cell's death.
- "and on Lipanto, one of the seats of the Planet Trade Organization’s power, the very planet where the peace treaty to end the great civil war had been signed" - this occurs in chapter seven of volume IV of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Planet Trade Organization.
- "But Silius was the heir to the Uiq species. He was the firstborn of his parents’ loins, and thus, he was held to certain lofty expectations." - this sort of first-born pressure is something I feel personally and also something that Olivien feels in Girl. I've always thought that Hyper Zergling is utterly bizarre for not having that feeling, himself. Not to say he should, or that it's a good thing to have that feeling. I guess it's more pressure for me than a good feeling.
- The prose gets indulgent in the third section, more so than in previous sections.
- Dr. Silius expresses the duality of man quite well. However, in reality, that is not true at all.
- The Carnage Xtreme powder would ease itself into Geti666's universe without the slightest need of lube.
- Silius' backstory is just lazy and cliched enough to work, I think. For the parody to be complete, I couldn't go overboard in describing Silius' backstory. It had to be somewhat ridiculous.
- I have relatives like Super Grandmother, although none are my grandmothers. The money-grubbing, no-empathy type is very uncharismatic and conducive to being cut off from my immediate family. I don't put up with that shit, and my offspring will not be around such insufferable cunts.
- I don't remember why I called Silius' test subjects saucegirls. Maybe it was just a funny name.
- Super Grandmother's appearance was inspired by that really old woman who was just a head and a spine on Spongebob Squarepants in the episode that he and Patrick sold chocolate to the residents of Bikini Bottom.
- Super Grandmother dominates Silius. Despite being this mad scientist who kills people, he can't overcome his grandmother. It's a sad, cliched state of affairs, and he could have done better if only he had tried. The problem is that everyone has blind spots and everyone has weaknesses, and nobody, not even the good doctor, is a perfect animal.
- I find it endearing that Super Grandmother has never met Silius' parents. Raises a lot of questions about this single bloodline family, though.
- "Release is the death of passion." - this is usually the case, but not so, I've found, when you're backed up or are watching/experiencing something extremely stimulating.
- "it could have been prevented, if he had been of a different chemical makeup." - this is a similar theme to one presented in Girl. Rereading this story, I'm finding it to be very parallel in thinking with that story. No wonder Girl was released next in the Ikigai lineup. I guess I was more depressed at this time than the overtly humorous setup of this story would lead people to believe. I don't honestly remember that being the case, but I guess it had to be, looking back on it now.
- It was a very intimate moment for Silius to reveal his password to Super Grandmother. Surely, she learned a lot about him that day.
- Silius was a right proper fool, though a careful one, to keep his monster password protected. A light joke, I suppose, but it also shows an aspect of his personality that hadn't been fleshed out too much beforehand.
- I have no explanation as to why Whis took Super Grandmother with him. Perhaps he thought the old woman was waiting for the feast, too. She was nice to have around, regardless.
- Silius shows what a noob he is by allowing his socks to be drenched. Likewise, Super Grandmother shows that she's not all there by allowing herself to be washed away in the rush of liquid.
- I imagine that Super Extreme Kabuto talks like Coletrain from Gears of War. Coletrain of course is a male, not a female like Kabuto.
- "Once, in the distant past, Silius had dropped several thousand canisters of that stuff on a species of humanoid beings, rendering every one of them suddenly and irrevocably extinct." - this is a reference to David killing all the Prometheans in the second Promethean movie (whatever that one was called).
- Superior Epic Carnage Xtreme of Untold Power is a name Geti would be proud of. I could see him rubbing one off to that name, not gonna lie.
- Caecondi are really cool fish. I don't think they'll ever be used for anything more than eye candy though. They simply aren't powerful enough to be a threat to anyone who is not already about to die, as seen with Zashisaro in the final chapter of volume III of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Planet Trade Organization.
- "Drive It Like You Stole It" is a great song. 10/10 from me.
- As Hyper Zergling often says, what Kabuto actually went through was a metamorphosis, not an evolution, but for the sake of maintaining a Pokemon monster theme, I had the AI call it an evolution.
- Kabutops is obviously the evolution of Kabuto, but aside from that, and also in terms of the names of her attacks, all of that was inspired by Geti's insipience.
- "“Negative, doctor. Ultimate Legendary Omega Kabutops Supreme is merely transforming into her most powerful state: the Epic Butchering Beast Mode. In that form, she is unbeatable, as she will gain unlimited, eternal access to the space-time consortium and will gain the ability to casually break apart Neutron stars with unparalleled ease.”" - I believe this paragraph references some attack on one of Geti's pages, but it's been three years, so I can't remember which one. With that said, I am happy to say that it is not all that difficult to mimic Geti's pseudoscientific overpowered ideas.
- If there's one thing One Punch Man does that I found inspirational, it was how bloody and gory the villains' deaths were. I tried to mimic that style with Kabutops' death. I think I was moderately successful, but who knows.
- The explosion of the planet at the end of the third section was purposefully overly dramatic and verbose. With that said, I had forgotten how verbose it actually was. That was way more than I had remembered.
- I have no idea where Whis' second ring goes, but it probably is never found by any mortals.
- Whis is addicted to food throughout the story. One small action he does is get rid of his ring, which he obsessively caresses. It is a small act, but one sign that he is trying to become more of a master over his emotions.
- The last section is an exercise in exploring the narcissism of Whis and Beerus, particularly in relation to one another. However, the ending paragraph shows that Whis got rid of his ring for nothing. He's still infatuated with himself.
- Whis was the one who made the mistake about the Ualir horns, but he never apologizes or admits that he did it. That was a calculated approach on his part, on par with how he treated Silius at the end of the second section.
I quite enjoyed rereading this story. It is a bit light on deeper content, in the style I was doing at the time of only saying things once, in that regard, and trying not to be repetitive so as to make certain things too obvious. In that way, it's a nice story that hints at deeper themes without really going into them overtly. Focusing on Whis was fun, and I think I was able to maintain his canon personality for the most part. This story, in its entirety, is also a big middle finger to Geti, and for that alone, it is worth its weight in gold.
<---- Part 90
Part 92 ---->