The aliens are flying all around. Dust is flying off, sound of grenades can be heard, buildings are laying demolished everywhere. Everyone is running for their lives. It is complete mayhem. Wait, a blue colored trail can be seen in the sky. BANG! It is Captain Earth. The mood has instantly changed. Everybody is chanting Captain Earth’s name.
“BRING ME THE ALIENS”, Captain Earth thunders through the mist of dust.
Now a red colored trail can be seen in the sky. BANG! It is the Alien King.
“Mich, is that you? You are the Alien King! I always knew you were the evil enemy.”, Captain Earth says.
“Oh no, Matty. You are dreaming again”, the Alien King says.
“What?”, says Captain Earth.
“Eww! You’re drooling as well”, the Alien King says.
Matt opens up his eyes. His head is on his desk. His sister Michelle is towering over him. She is wearing the angry-as-usual expression.
“It was the Captain Earth dream again, wasn’t it?”, Mich says.
“Yeah, that too with the same enemy as every other time”, Matt says.
“For one last time I am asking you, please tell me, who is the Alien King in your dream?”, Mich says.
“Oh, leave it. You don’t need to know”, Matt says.
“Anyway, Mom wants you downstairs in 5”, Mich says as she leaves the room.
“Close the door behind you!”, Matt shouts. Like always, his words were lost to the walls.
On a different planet
One-eyed and Three-eyed are watching TV:
“We are at the Community Hall of West Florida. Here the volunteers of the NGO “Humans v/s Captain Earth” are staging a demonstration. They have a list of demands that they wish the authorities to address. The list includes:
• Asking Captain Earth to apply for a flying permit.
• Billing Captain Earth for the damages he incurs on the public property while chasing criminals.
• Charging him for taking the law in his own hands on numerous occasions.
And it just goes on. Many believe that this is movement, like many others, are funded by numerous Mafias whose activities have often been disrupted by Captain Earth. What’s interesting, though, is the amount of public support that these demonstrations have gradually started to draw.
To everybody’s surprise the occasion was graced by none other than Captain Earth himself. In an intense debate, Captain Earth discussed his point of view with his detractors.
Later on, he had a word with us:
What makes you risk your own life for somebody else?
Captain Earth: My love for humanity.
Who is the person behind that mask?
Captain Earth: It is a human being like you.
What do you have to say to the people who believe you are a cheap stuntman. They say the previous generations revered you for all the wrong reasons. You are overrated, is what they say.
Captain Earth: As long as they love Earth, they don’t need to love me.
(Captain Earth flies off)
So, this was Captain Earth who once again reiterated that love drives Earth forward, not Captain Earth. Amanda Burns, Florida, for ABC News.”
One –eyed switches off the TV.
Three eyed: As long as he is there, our ambition of capturing Earth will never come true. We better give that ambition up.
One eyed: You are so naïve. You can’t even see with your three eyes. Ha! That’s a joke!
Three eyed: Huh?
One eyed: Right now is the time for us to attack Earth.
Three eyed: Didn’t you hear what Captain Earth just say?
One eyed: Yes, I did. But have a look at Earth. The human race doesn’t believe in Captain Earth anymore. His ideals are old and outdated. The love for humanity that he talks about is a myth. It’s gone.
Three eyed: But if we attack Earth, he will come saving it, won’t he?
One eyed: Oh yes, he will. But this time he will be badly defeated. I have a plan that will see the end of Captain Earth and, consequently, of the human rule on Earth.
Three eyed: Then what are we waiting for, boss?
One eyed: Errr… travel expenses approval, I guess. Let me go and check the request status with the Alien King.
The Aliens come to Earth
The aliens send one contingent to every nation of the world. Their message is simple – Give us your cultural heritage and we will make you stronger than your neighbor. They promise to provide all the things that the mankind ever dreamt of – weapons, money, cars, houses, and many more. They will kill your enemy for you if you fulfill their demands. This creates a mayhem on Earth. Everyone now wants to be a superpower.
One by one all the countries of the world turn over their heritage to the aliens. China lets the aliens take its Great Wall. India lets go of the symbol of love The Taj Mahal. France did not wince as Mona Lisa was taken away from Louvre. The aliens also fulfill their promises and give humans the desired wealth and weapons. But the more the aliens give humans, the more the human hunger increases. They need more of everything that the aliens have to offer. More of luxuries, more of gratification, more of power.
Nations dig deep into themselves to satisfy the aliens. But as they pour open their treasures to those strangers, they discover their neighbors possessing the same weapons, the same power. The human demand for absolute authority grows so intense that soon humans are ready to do anything. Then the aliens play their trump card. A contest is launched. Whoever brings Captain Earth to the aliens first, will get the super weapon. This weapon is so strong that whoever possesses it gets to rule the whole of Earth.
In some corner of Earth
Captain Earth sits saddened in one corner of his house. The TV is playing the news of how all the nations have launched into a goose chase for Captain Earth. These are the same people for whom he had fought his entire life. For God knows how many years, he taught them the ideal of love. Now, a part of him wanted to cry seeing the human race blinded in this glorious facade. Of course, he could still fight the aliens. He had all the power in the world to still save the human race from any tormentor. But what about the tormentor within? How would he save the humans from themselves. He could fight, but on whose side? May be this was the time for him to go. He was the born leader, but for the first time in life there was no one to be led. This was the time to move on. So he gives up his suit. He takes on plain clothes, wears an ordinary look and walks into the oblivion. He was no longer Captain Earth, a name he took only to save Earth.
Meanwhile all the countries of the world are hunting for Captain Earth. Gradually, it becomes clear that Captain Earth has abandoned the ship. The news of missing Captain Earth spreads all around the universe. Now one question confronts the world. Who will be the superpower? Now which nation will be given the ultimate weapon that will help it rule Earth? A summit happens. The leaders of all the nations of the world are arguing with each other. Each leader believes the weapon belongs to his own nation. Finally the Alien King appears. He speaks:
“Brothers and Sisters of Earth, I welcome you to the Alien Kingdom”
An uneasy silence spreads throughout the place. “But which country gets to be the superpower?”, an audience member asks.
“Nobody, you fool. You don’t have what it takes to rule a planet. That is why we have decided to take over the reins in our hand. KNEEL DOWN TO THE ALIEN KING”, he says.
It takes some time for the inhabitants of Earth to realize what happened. When they finally look around they find everything gone. The worst part is that they don’t have an enemy to blame for this destruction. The enemy lies within themselves. The words of Captain Earth now start ringing in their ears. Love, he said, was the ultimate power. The whole of human race feels utterly powerless today. Now with Captain Earth gone, no hope is to be seen on the horizon. Having betrayed each other and themselves, humans become the alien slaves.
Matt is sitting in his room. The past few days have been hard on the kid. Multiple times he has had to fight with friends who thought Captain Earth was the enemy of humanity. “Captain Earth will come back”, he said to all his friends. But nobody believed him. The ultimate disappointment happened when Michelle one day sat him down and tried to explain the “situation” to him. Captain Earth has left Earth and will never come back, is what she said. “But there is no Earth without Captain Earth”, Matt said. At this Mich said that humans had chosen their greed over love for Earth. Now human race will forever be a slave to the aliens. All this didn’t make any sense to Matt.
One evening in the community garden, an alien tries to snatch away a Captain Earth doll from a kid. Matt can’t bear to see this. He goes ahead and snatches the toy back from the alien. The alien threatens him with his weapon, But Matt stands his ground. “Kill me but I won’t let you take what is not rightfully yours”, Matt says. The alien backs off. As Matt returns the kid’s Captain Earth doll and sees him smile, he understands what Captain Earth meant by love. This fills him with deep regret and sadness at the state of his own race. How could we humans go so wrong? How could we be blinded by our greed so much that we destroyed our own home? As he tries to come to terms with this realization, the kid’s terrified mother comes running towards him. The kid had run off in pursuit of his Captain Earth doll, she tells Matt. As they were parting the kid says something that changes Matt’s life. The kid waves his Captain Earth doll at Matt and says, “Thank you Captain Earth”.
As Matt walks back home, his head becomes a boiler of thoughts. Didn’t Captain Earth himself say “There is a Captain Earth in everyone”? Isn’t this a high time for humans to be woken up? “Love is the real superpower”, these are but Captain Earth’s words. All he needed to do was to remind the inhabitants of Earth of the love they used to have in their hearts. But how could he do that?
Matt enters his room lost in deep thought. A Captain Earth suit hangs from a hook in the wall. Suddenly it all becomes clear to him. If there is a Captain Earth in everyone, it means anyone can be Captain Earth. Earth needs an inspiration to rise above the prevalent despair. It needs a symbol of hope. It needs something to remind them of their love for themselves and for their own home. Earth needs Captain Earth.
The YouTube video hits the world like a storm. “CAPTAIN EARTH RETURNS” becomes the topic of discussion everywhere. The video shows a leaner Captain Earth assuring the world that he is there for them. It tells the people that they have nothing to be afraid of. They just need to have love in their hearts to fight all evil.
This one video hits the Alien kingdom like a bolt of lightning. The people around the world rise up with a new vigor and spirit. “We want our home back”, “Earth for humanity”, “We love Earth”, and many more become the mouthpieces of this new movement. With an indomitable spirit people demand back what truly belongs to them. They ask for their 7 wonders back, they ask for the works of the masters back, they ask for their heritage back.
The aliens lose their cool seeing this reinvigorated human spirit. In haste they issue an ultimatum “Captain Earth must show himself otherwise innocent humans will die”. They decide on a deadline of 24 hours.
Time passes but Captain Earth doesn’t show up. The whole of Earth goes into a state of extreme anxiety. What would happen if he doesn’t come out, was the unasked question on everybody’s lips. Doubts start creeping in from the crevices created by the imminent danger. Once again the whole idea of love was put to trial. Once again the ideals of Captain Earth were going being scrutinized within the hearts of millions of humans. Once again Earth needed Captain Earth to save it from itself.
As the deadline approaches, Matt makes up his mind. He doesn’t mind giving up his own life for something he believes in. He decides to give himself up when the time comes. At least, it will show the aliens what sacrifices the human race is capable of. At least, it will show the people of the world that all love is not dead. At least, it will be a matter of pride for him that he got to be Captain Earth, for howsoever little a time.
Matt reaches the place given by the Alien King.
The aliens are flying all around. The promised destruction has begun. Dust is flying off, sounds of grenades can be heard, building are laying demolished everywhere. Everybody is running for their lives. It is complete mayhem. “Don’t worry, this will end soon”, Matt tells himself. He prepares to shout for the aliens to see him. Suddenly, a blue colored trail can be seen in the sky. BANG! It is Captain Earth. The mood has instantly changed. Everybody is chanting Captain Earth’s name.
“BRING ME THE ALIENS”, Captain Earth thunders through the mist of dust.
Now a red colored trail can be seen in the sky. BANG! It is the Alien King.
Matt cannot believe his eyes. Could it all be true? As he looks closer, he sees the Alien King’s face. It is the face of evil with nothing but hatred masking his features. It is all too much for the poor little Matt. Everything starts rotating. As he sees Captain Earth, crushing aliens with all his might, Matt drops unconscious on the ground.
Matt opens up his eyes in his own room. So it was another Captain Earth dream, he thinks to himself. It is dark outside but the room is slightly illuminated. Crackers are being burst outside. What are the people celebrating for, he has no idea. As his eyes get accustomed to the surroundings he notices something that takes his breath away. Captain Earth is sitting by the side of his bead, watching over him.
“Are you ….”, Matt begins but struggles to finish the sentence.
“Yes, I am Captain Earth. Just like you, Matt”, Captain Earth.
“This is unbelievable. What happened out there? I thought I was dead”, Matt says.
“Oh no, Matt. You defeated the aliens. It was very brave of you.”, Captain Earth says.
“Me? No, you did. I could not have survived even one blow from the Alien King”, Matt says.
“And yet you stood up to him. That is why you are my hero, Matt”, Captain Earth says.
“I knew you would come back. Where had you gone Captain Earth”, Matt says.
“I had lost hope, Matt. I thought the humans didn’t want me around anymore”, Captain Earth says.
“That’s not correct”, says Matt.
“That’s what you showed me”, says Captain Earth.
“Are you sure you are not mad at me for how I pretended to be you and all?”, Matt says.
“On the contrary, I am grateful to you. You made everybody realize what truly mattered to them, including myself. You are a real superhero”, Captain Earth says.
“Me? Oh, no no. I can’t fly like you. I can’t fight like you. I can’t even talk like you. I try sometimes, though, but I just can’t”, Matt says.
“These things don’t matter, Matt. The real superpower lies within your heart. It is your love for your ideals that makes you a superhero. In fact, that is what makes you Captain Earth. So for saving my home, thank you Captain Earth”, says Captain Earth.
Captain Earth stands up and begins to leave. As he leaves the room, Matt pinches himself. It was indeed a dream, but of the type that lingers on forever.