Written by Brendan Dillon
It was early morning, November 1, 1999. Norman the Elf checked in to the intensive care section at Wake Medical Center in Raleigh.
"I'm here to see Cronan Thompson," he told the nurse.
"He's in Room 7." The nurse opened the door and let Norman in.
The blue elf climbed up onto Cronan's bedside. Norman never cried; he was a sadistic elf, it was against his nature. Nevertheless, Norman looked to be close to tears as he viewed Cronan's unconscious form.
"Cronan," he began, "I hope that you can hear me, but I just want you to know.... we've been through a lot together, you know, ever since you made me up a few years ago. And, well, if anything happened to you... hell, my existence in this dimension partly stemmed from your personality, for all I know I'd cease to exist. I can't let that happen, you know." Norman squared his shoulders. "Do you hear me? Quit being so selfish, with all this cancer shit. My existence may be at stake!"
Norman was interrupted by another visitor entering the room. He turned around to see a fat, black, transsexual, lesbian midget in the doorway.
"Yuppers. Just zapped myself in from Baton Rouge," said the highest-ranking deity in THE TRUE RELIGION, and creator of the world. She walked over to take a better look at Cronan. "Yeah, better do this now, I guess."
"What are you talking about?" Norman asked.
"Well, you know, I just woke up from my millennial nap, and I had a talk with those Three Gods of Sandwichmaking guys. It's unanimous. Cronan
here is to be promoted."
"Promoted? To Duct Tape Class, you mean?!?"
"Well, Duct Tape Class In Training. A rank this high isn't just given out like that. There's a pretty rigorous course but we think Cronan's ready for it."
"Ready? Just look at him!" Norman yelled.
"What, that little cancer thing? That's mortal stuff. He's a General Purpose God, for cryin' out loud."
Delilah began focusing on Cronan. Ooga Chaka music could be heard coming from no where in particular. Cronan's body, though remaining still, began to take on the appearance of new life, which could not be visible otherwise.
After a moment, Cronan's vitals began to drop, and doctors and nurses rushed in, pushing Delilah aside, not having a single clue of who she really was.
Soon, in the mortal sense, Cronan Thompson had died.
But in a higher plane of existence, reserved only for Duct Tape Class Gods (and trainees), Cronan's journey was just beginning.
Later that week, Brendan and Wayland met at Third Place, a coffee shop in Raleigh. They began to discuss Cronan, what had happened to him and their memories of him. Eventually the matter of the Oligarchy came up.
"We can't just take Cronan off the Prophets list," Brendan said. "Cronan's a Co-Ruler of the World. He always will be, no matter what."
"True," replied Wayland. "But as far as actually leading the Oligarchy, Cronan's not here anymore. Training to be a Duct Tape Class God is not something you can do on your spare time. Most likely, Cronan is going to be gone until the Oligarchy takes over publicly."
"Hmmm... well, we need a third Co-Ruler; let's face it, everything in the Oligarchy is in groups of three. I haven't quite figured it out, but it's some kind of rule, or something. Should we promote Bevin?"
Wayland's eyes filled with fear. "I don't think so. She's probably got just as much power as us just staying where she is. Make her a Co-Ruler, and we're in real trouble."
"Good point. Well, there's Jason. Cronan offered him the job once before anyway. Want to ask him again?"
"I guess so."
"Ok, we'll talk to him Friday. Maybe as a Co-Ruler he'll actually do something with the Shockwave TRUE RELIGION site. (Hint, hint.)"
"What? I didn't catch that last part."
"Hmm? Oh, never mind."
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