Fang Force #19 – “All Hail: The Fang Empress Realized” (Part 1)

“Fang Force is at full strength,” Lord Nihilex lamented. “Even without the Great Vampire King, they are five united, and with their unstoppable familiar combat machines at the ready!”

His voice more than echoed in the dark; it was an extension of it, so that every word drilled into the ears of those who dwelled there. Not least of all was Fantom, his warrior step-son with a mask covering half his absent face.

“We’ve been cocky,” the younger monster mused. “It isn’t enough to simply throw our weight around, hoping for the best. Defeating Fang Force will require all our cunning.”

“Who asked you?” the shadow conqueror roared, and unleashed a wave of dark energy to plunge deep into his chest.

Such attacks were becoming customary, and left Fantom writhing. Some days he wondered why he spoke at all; but then he realised that to be silent was to give himself completely to his step-father’s wishes. His mother, Queen Lacuna, would have long age interjected were she awake to see such a display. Continue reading “Fang Force #19 – “All Hail: The Fang Empress Realized” (Part 1)”

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April Fools!

Hi, friends.

In case you hadn’t guessed it, the last chapter of Fang Force – ‘A Bold New Direction’ – was a break from our traditional canon in the name of a very silly holiday.

Thanks so much to Sunflower of Ice of Technically Abroad for taking the time to put that together. The story tickled me to no end!

Also, feel free to check out my contribution to ATL: Takes From the Retrofuture, and while you’re there take a binge through the archives. You won’t regret it!

Love and laughs,
Miranda Sparks

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Fang Force #18.5 – “A Bold New Direction” (April Fools!)

Sitting at the side of Queen Lacuna, Lord Nihilex hadn’t looked away from her sleeping form since his children left. Had he expected too much of them? Perhaps, but what other choice did he have? He couldn’t allow Fantom to live after what he’d done, bringing the scion in without killing her. He thought his children could manage, but cursed himself at Fearus sobbed like a whimpering human.

Hours passed with his thoughts lingering between that of the children and the queen. Eventually something that would normally never be allowed happened; a freakling opened the door to the chamber. It was met with destruction so fast that it may not have noticed before falling into dust.

“You may enter, Wiseman,” Nihilex growled, “but keep quiet. Should you disturb her rest you will meet the same fate as the messenger.” Continue reading “Fang Force #18.5 – “A Bold New Direction” (April Fools!)”

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BLOG: Transgender Day of Visibility

Image may contain: 1 person, eyeglasses and closeupToday is March 31 in Australia and, if you’re not one for keeping up with dates, Transgender Day of Visibility – the day for us trans folk who have the luxury of being out and proud to be known. We do this in the interest of making normal our oft scandalised, but ultimately mundane, humanity.

This year’s a tricky one, what with the world being shut down and all; if you look on the streets only one or two people are visible, and in the interest of public safety I recommend you don’t go near them. (They also appreciate it, I’m sure.)

That aside, I have an odd relationship with TDOV for a number of reasons.

  1. Being visible in a way that’s comfortable is a luxury that many of my brothers, sisters, and non-binary siblings cannot afford. A lot of us would rather not make a big song and dance about being trans, and prefer the comforts of blending with society at large; whether that be in the name of survival or just being sick of people staring.
  2. I’m a trans person who is visible 365 days a year, whether I want to be or not.

There’s a thing called ‘passing’ in our community, which means to appear indistinguishable from our cisgender (non-trans) cohorts. Some people think being able to pass lends legitimacy to our individual identities, I don’t.

Either way, it’s a thing.

The point is, I don’t pass, and for me that’s okay. Not passing doesn’t mean I’m any less the soft butch dream dyke I know myself to be, even though it leaves me open to misgendering, discrimination, and verbal (and sometimes physical) abuse.

It’s a sad state of affairs that the cost of wearing a skirt and some lipstick, making myself a bit pretty, seems to be the scorn of the world around me; because it doesn’t have to be that way.

I’ve yet to hear any sort of cogent argument for this status quo that doesn’t boil down to “I think you’re icky.”

I’m fortunate that I’m able to brush those sorts of people off, and that in my present day life, outside of governments and similar bodies, those views have no impact on me as an individual. (That wasn’t always the case, though – being born into a fundementalist religious household I was taught that people like me were destined for Hell, but that’s a story for another day.)

Others aren’t able to do that. There are so many trans people who don’t have the physical, let alone emotional, distance from those who would do them harm. Many of those harmful people are co-workers, peers, even family, from which the dream of escape can be impossible.

So this TDOV, and every other day, I beseech you all; spare a thought for the trans people in your lives, whether you’re aware of them or not. The world need not be a hostile place, if we’re allies to our fellow humans, and decent to each other.

You can do this by acknowledging our dignity, our humanity, and open yourself to learning about or lives and needs. It can be as simple as using our names.

That’s it.

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Fang Force – Delay

Hi folks,

As you know the world has been a bit crazy lately, and while I’m safe and healthy, circumstances are causing a slight delay on the release of Fang Force.

But fret not! New issue is nearly done, and will be released in the next few days. Be sure to watch your feed for upcoming superhero goodness.

Love and laughs,
Miranda Sparks

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Fang Force #18 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 6)

When Feareus and Vultera returned to their underground home it was not with their heads held high, nor was it with the expectation that they would walk away in good health. They marched like prisoners to the gallows to the steps of their father’s throne, where Lord Nihilex sat spread legged, chin resting in his palm, tapping an impatient finger.

The two bowed until their noses kissed bedrock, and trembled. Punishment was coming, they knew it. Brother and sister shrunk as much as they could, as to invite the pain would end the ordeal sooner.

Lord Nihilex hummed. “You had victory in the palm of your hand,” he said. “All you had to do was still your tongues long enough for Fang Force to eat itself, and now look!”

To one side stood his mage, a skeleton shrouded in rags, combing his hands over a crystal ball. Through it projected the image of Fang Force in technicolor, tearing through the shadow conquerors unliving army like so many toy soldiers. Continue reading “Fang Force #18 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 6)”

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Fang Force #17 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 5)

Sacrificing their mortal forms in the name of justice, the familiars of Fang Force transformed into the greatest living weapons the world had ever seen. Once lost to the ages, their return should have been cause for celebration. However, the five great machines – Red Bat, Blue Wolf, Yellow Beetle, Pink Spider and Green Mountain Lion – had come as enemies, set to destroy the former home of the Great Vampire King.

Lindsay watched, helpless and in awe, as the first of the constructs came down on the castle bricks. Claws like steel collided with the walls, only to bounce back, repelled in equal force by an incandescent purple barrier.

“The old Master’s protection spell is as strong as ever,” Luther said, “but it won’t last very long!”

“Then we end this before it goes any further,” Cassius added with grim determination.

Lindsay locked her gaze on Vincent and Drake, whose victory seemed assured. Not until the final blow, she decided, and removed the crucifone from her jacket.

“With me, boys,” she said. Continue reading “Fang Force #17 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 5)”

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Fang Force #16 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 4)

Fantom hobbled through the passages, a shell of his former self. What a fool he’d been. Had he not been so prideful, he’d have known to assuage his step-father’s anger. Instead he provoked the beast, and in doing so accepted a wealth of pain that left him debilitated. Such was the cost of his hubris, to which he could blame nobody else.

It would be some time before he healed enough to face Fang Force again on equal terms; if, by that time, there was still a Fang Force to battle.

He limped into an antechamber, where laid across a pair of long beds were the two vampires staring at an hourglass. The grains sifted through the funnel at a snail’s pace. Neither paid any mind to the stranger as he entered the room.

“You should have ended them when you had the chance,” Fantom said. Continue reading “Fang Force #16 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 4)”

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Fang Force #15 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 3)

Hate, like love, burns hotter than any emotion. To hold it in your heart is to capture the essence of life; to be inspired, and driven to new heights. All that divides them is a thin wall through which a tonic of bitterness might send one falling.

Moments before, Blue Fang might have claimed to love his counterparts in pink and green. Yet they fought with wild abandon, as though to allow the other freedom was the greatest of sins.

They danced up and down the steps of City Hall. Cheers rose up from the rabble of freaklings all around. Though the warring vampires could hardly hear their screeching; not with the drum beat of their fury pounding inside their ears.

Blue Fang charged low to take his opponents off their feet, but they were swift and evaded him. The knowledge of centuries granted them insight over the other, drawing them into a cycle of counter-movements without end. Ultimately it would become a battle of endurance, in which two were more than a match for one.

Luther stood on the sideline, caught between combat, his feelings, and Lindsay. Why did they have to fight? But fighting was inevitable, and without his help Cassius would fall.

The straw haired vampire frowned at Lindsay. “I’m sorry.” Continue reading “Fang Force #15 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 3)”

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Fang Force #14 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 2)

To say that Cassius was stupefied was something of an understatement. Humans, in his experience, were afraid of vampires. A certain number even came to the castle to stoke that fear. However, when faced with the subject of their anxiety, they utterly failed to react. To what end! How, Cassius wondered, did a little old man evoke more fright than a legitimate vampire such as himself?

He continued to boggle as he scaled the steps of the belfry, only to be shaken from his reverie by a pair of arms encapsulating him at waist level. Cassius blinked before realizing they belonged to Lindsay, and that she was in something of a state. She clung to him, and though it did not come naturally to him, the vampire thought it best to stroke her back.

“Is everything alright?” he asked. Continue reading “Fang Force #14 – “Bitter Return: A Fang Force Divided” (Part 2)”

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