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Origins of Shame.

Origins of Shame

This is a coming of middle-age story about a superhero involved a Midwestern branch of the Justice League, which was really a training ground/high school for “Metropolitan” heroes-proper. If the story sounds familiar, Your thinking of Disney’s “Sky High”. A lot of that movie was pretty much exactly what I created 15 years prior. That happens sometimes. I sat down with the task in mind of recreating our favorite hero from that JL Midwest Mythos.That’s this piece.
“Origins of Shame” was always supposed to be a story about depression, although I didn’t know it when I wrote the first part of the story. Originally, the third part was a third-person telling of Gordy catching a burglar, but bungling it and falling off the roof and screwing up an undercover investigation. That didn't work so much.

Here's a sample:
The point is, even if I had been there, or able to speed to her protection using a push of super-goo, or leapt a tall building in a single bound, or outran a speeding bullet, she would have still choked to death. I don’t have CPR training. They don’t teach you anything useful at Hero High School Even if I’d known she was dying. Even if I’d believed she was stupid enough to drink so much; even if I’d known she had the kind of shit-head friends who would leave her hidden, tucked behind a crook in a willow tree along the banks out on the island on Riverside Park.

Watertown PD picked me up from class one September afternoon. They’d found her late in the evening the day prior; they took me in a questioned me. I didn’t know. I didn’t know anything. I hadn’t even known she was a drinker. I’d been so wrapped up in my college, and she was so grown-up and mature. I had been concentrating on my hero-training and having a great time at JLSI. I thought she and I would live forever. I thought we’d been through the tough times already.

It turns out she had. I, however, still had a world of tough times to live through. Tough times unlike anything I’d ever known.

Also, watch for the names of some of the other famous characters who went to the same college as Gordy. Cameos! Of people you’ve never heard of! Fun!

Here's a link to the page for this stuff where I first published it. From there you can find th e pages where the pdfs and Podcast are.

You might want to read from the GoogleDoc instead.

Enjoy these stories. They clock in at a total of about 5000 words and can be used anyway you want, so long as its consistent with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike2.5 License. For reprint rights, or to inquire about commercial publication, contact the author at

I definitely got a strong

I definitely got a strong sense of Gordy's voice in all three parts. The guy's been through a lot, and his account of it reflects that. Not an easy thing to do, and his voice seemed consistent through the entire story.

I thought the last part was particularly good for the way it portrayed the strength of the bond between Gordy and his sister, despite her death. As motivations go for a superhero, the scene in Rosa's room and Gordy's decision to do his part to end suffering were convincing and humane. If this is going to be a 'dark comedy', as your tag suggests, I like the fact that the hero has heart, as well as all that goo.

The description of the goo in the second part is interesting, but feels a little long when presented that way. You said the older version of part three, the one with the burgler, didn't work as well, but I wonder if the goo info in part two might work better if the reader learned about it as part of Gordy's attempt and failure to stop a crime. Maybe that scene is worth another try?

Regardless, I thought this was a well-written set-up for a superhero series. I'm curious to see how Gordy's early adventures turn out. I'm also wondering about those puppets from part one--will they turn up again somehow?