The Circle of Life

As a ten-year-old little boy, Joshua Corwood was rescued from a burning building by a superhero named Lionheart. From that day forward Josh dreamed of being a superhero himself. Once you’ve flown in the sky, he reasons, you can never be satisfied on the ground.

But years later, as a reporter for Powerlines, a superhero newsmagazine, he discovers the sad truth. “It’s all a fake, a fraud,” says Morrie Abadie, a P.T. Barnum-like huckster. “The battles are staged, and all the villains are actors.” The superhero life that Josh loved so much was just a form of entertainment, not much different from pro sports or kid’s cartoons.

Lionheart, however, was different. Infused with the spirits of King Arthur, Robin Hood, and Richard the Lionhearted, he took his superpowers seriously. He and a like-minded group of crimefighters calling themselves the LightCorps worked overtime to keep the streets of Siegel City safe. Little did Josh realize that when he was pulled from that burning building as a kid his fate would forever be entwined with Lionheart and his pride.

Much like Dylan Horrocks’ Hicksville, Siegel City is a place ingrained with comic book history. The cityscape includes architecture and neighborhoods bearing the names of Simon, Kirby, Lee and Barks (the name Shuster is conspicuous in its absence), and there are real and fake superheroes around every corner.

Everyone in Siegel City is also a (willing or unwilling) participant in a multi-issue real-life crossover event. Call it Siegel City Civil War if you like. It’s up to Josh and his Children of the Lion fraternity to squash the nefarious plans of an immortal megalomaniac shapeshifter. Just because the superhero fights were a sham in the past doesn’t mean the spirit wasn’t real. Josh wants to save the world and give his hometown real-life heroes to believe in again. “This is our chance to do what we’re supposed to do,” he says. We’re confident that Lionheart, the king of the urban jungle, would surely approve.

[Other People’s Heroes / By Blake M. Petit / First Smashwords Edition: March 2011 / ISBN: 9781458151872]

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