Those of you who also read curiouswombat’s LJ will be aware that I’ve hurt my back; sciatica, we believe. I’ve been in a lot of pain for the past few days. It’s gradually easing off, and I can more or less function now, but putting on my socks is a laborious and painful process. I have managed to squeeze in a little writing in the time between work and sleep. I’ve been continuing the ‘Dr. Horrible’ fic that I started last week. I wrote a scene that was intended to be the first half of the next chapter; however when I opened it up today to do a little more I looked at the word count and realised that it was precisely 1,000 words. I’m taking that as a sign and posting it today; then I’ll carry straight on with ‘Tabula Avatar’ in my time off work. Part One was here.
Just For One Day
Dr. Horrible stared at the camera and swallowed. He reached up to the goggles perched on his forehead and adjusted one of the lenses. “I know I haven’t been on this blog much recently,” he said, “but, well, life as a full member of the Evil League of Evil is, you know, busy busy busy! I can’t just work on my own projects, in my own time, and arrange my schedule the way I want. If Bad Horse wants something done, well, I have to do it. Still, on the plus side, I get access to all the Wonderflonium I want, and I can book time on the League’s particle accelerator, which is pretty darn neat. It’s just that, well, things keep coming up. Like, today.”
He glanced away from the camera for a moment. “I don’t have a whole lot of time. A few minutes while the circuit printer runs through its program, that’s all, but let’s see what I can get done. I’m, well, kinda out of the habit of blogging. What did I…? Oh, yeah. E-mails.” He reached off-screen and picked up a sheaf of papers. “Okay, let’s start with this one from GogglesRKool. ‘Your new red and black uniform is real smart but it’s more sinister and it makes you look less approachable than when you had the old white costume. Why the change?’ Good question.” He flexed the fingers of his gleaming black gauntlet. “It’s just, like, more professional, you know? And, hey, I’m a super-villain. I’m not supposed to be approachable.” He shuffled that paper sheet to the back of the wad and looked at the next.
“Well, this is from long-time viewer 2Sly4U. ‘Congratulations on getting into the Evil League of Evil. I didn’t think you’d make it, but I was wrong.’ Yeah, you were. ‘Dr. Horrible, now you’re in the League, what’s it like? How do you relate to the other members?’ Hmm. Well, I’ve already mentioned the, uh, trade-off between access to resources and extra responsibilities. Bad Horse rules us with an iron hoof but, well, I guess it works out okay. It’s not like I’m going to socialize with the boss much, so it doesn’t make a big difference that he’s a horse.”
Dr. Horrible pursed his lips. “The others, well, I don’t know them all that well yet. Fake Thomas Jefferson plays a killer game of chess. Dead Bowie’s pretty cool, well, he’d have to be, I guess. Fury Leika… she pretty much won’t talk to me. I guess she’s kinda off men, and, well, who can blame her? She looks… so sad. It’s hard to look her in the eye. Tie-Die? She seems, well, nice for a super-villain, sings, dances, smiles a lot, but, uh, it doesn’t reach her eyes. They’re, well, sometimes I’m kinda glad she wears that mask. I don’t know… maybe you have to have been in a bad place to get to be a successful super-villain.” Dr. Horrible raised a hand to his goggles again and bit his lip.
“Snake Bite, well, it’s not easy to relate to the High Priestess of a snake cult that dates back eight thousand years. Why does it have to be snakes? And Professor Normal, I think he might, uh, resent me. He keeps trying to outdo me. Well, hello, I have a PhD in Horribleness and he just has a plain old PhD. How can he match up? And now he’s caused this whole crisis situation and we have to fix it. Huh.” He glanced at something off-screen. “Still a couple of minutes to go. Moving on.” He shuffled a new sheet of paper to the front of the sheaf.
“Well, what have we here? Johnny Snow, my would-be nemesis. ‘Doctor Horrible, we need to talk.’ Talk? Hey, have you given up on the whole nemesis thing? ‘You pick the meeting place. Something about what happened at the Homeless Shelter doesn’t ring true to…’ No, I don’t think we need to talk.” Dr. Horrible lowered the paper. “Stick to your do-gooding and keep your parka-clad nose out of my business. Anyway, I don’t have time for talking. I have fifteen flesh-eating monsters from the far future to deal with.”
Dr. Horrible selected another print-out. “From NerdsRHot. ‘Dr. Horrible, now that you’re a full member of the Evil League of Evil you could have any henchman you want. So why do you still have Moist? He’s, like, totally lame with the worst super-power ever.’ Hey, there’s more to being a henchman than the super-powers. Moist is loyal. He’s always stood by me. I’m going to stand by him, okay? Yeah, I might take on someone else as well, one day, but I’ll always have Moist. Right, next e-mail.”
“And this is from DeadNotSleeping. ‘You used to mention a girl all the time. Now, on the rare occasions when you blog, you don’t say anything about… her…’ I don’t want to talk about it, okay?” He crumpled up the e-mail print-out and threw it away.
“Okay, the circuit-board must be just about ready, so I’ll finish off. Monsters. It’s Professor Normal’s fault. He was trying to grab future technology. I guess maybe he felt threatened now that the great Dr. Horrible is in the League. His crazy experiment went wrong and he brought back fifteen… things. Creatures. A little like ferocious apes, sort of, only I think they might be remote descendants of bats, or, hey, maybe the Madagascan Fossa if it evolved in a really weird way. Or a genetically-engineered cross. Whatever. They’re dangerous, okay? It might be a good idea to stay in your houses. Don’t go out tonight, ‘cause they’re bound to take your life. If you must go out it might be wise to stick to public places. And, hey, if you see anything the size of a gorilla snatching up people and eating them, well, screaming and running for your life would be traditional. Probably a good idea. That’s it for now. Signing off.”