Author's Note 1: While we're all still waiting for the real JSA Rebirth, I thought I'd try my hand at the First Superhero Team. And as for why it's taking so long for my other stories to update, I haven't been feeling that creative for a while, but I think I got the spark again. Also, spoilers for anyone who hasn't read Flash #22.
So sit back and read on, my friends!
Jay Garrick had no idea how long he had been trapped in the Speed Force. Seconds, minutes, days, and months all blended. He was aware that some being (or beings) had tampered with the world. Wally believed that they had only stolen ten years from everyone. But it was so much worse than that.
An entire generation had been stolen. Decades of tradition and heroism snuffed out in the blink of an eye. Why? Jay honestly had no idea. Maybe the force behind this had a vendetta against the heroes of Earth. Maybe they wanted to examine an alternate history. But whatever the reason, Jay knew that he couldn't let this being keep toying with time and space like it was some toy. He had to escape!
But that was the problem. Speedsters need a connection with someone to keep themselves from fading into the Speed Force. And the force behind the missing years erased every connection Jay had. His wife Joan was now a spinster. His friends had lived lives without even knowing each other, let alone him. And even Barry Allen, his protege, failed to recognize him after he saved him and Batman from falling into the timestream. At this point, Jay Garrick was about to resign himself to his fate and drift into the nirvana provided by the Speed Force.
Jay's eyes widened in shock. "Wait! Was that?"
"Cei-U." An old tired voice and said, the words echoing through the Speed Force. And it was a voice that Jay recognized.
"I-it can't be! He's dead! I saw him die!"
"Please." The old voice cried out in sorrow. "Please bring them back. Bring my friends back!"
And the first time in a while, a smile made way to Jay Garrick's face, and he began to run.
A Justice Society of America story
Alan Scott had a good life. Back in the late 30s, he had built Gotham Communications from the ground up. And even as technology advanced from film to digital, GC had kept with the times, providing Gotham will all its news and information. And in an age with psychotic criminal clowns and bat-themed vigilantes, information was vital.
Tonight was his son, Todd's, wedding rehearsal. His daughter, Jennifer-Lynn, had flown in from California just for this. But as Alan was about to step out of his office, his attention turned to an antique that lined his desk.
A green train lantern. The blond-haired man couldn't recall ever buying such a strange-colored object. Maybe from one of his travels to China. And whenever he looked at that lantern, oddly enough, his right ring finger twitched. Why it did so was unknown to Alan.
If you only took one glance at Ted Grant, you would only assume the man was in his mid-sixties instead of his mid-nineties. Many believed that the reason for his fit shape was due to his boxing. Even after retiring from the sport, Ted continued his daily routine well into his twilight years.
Currently, Ted was in the middle of his usual routine by punching a sandbag. A few years ago, he would have called his buddy Al Pratt to box with him. Unfortunately, Al died of a heart attack about three years ago. Naturally, this was a huge blow for Ted, since Al was one of his few friends that were still around. The ravishes of old age had taken most of his buddies, and Ted was the only one left. This was not a thought that made the retired boxer happy.
Keystone City, The Good Life Home for the Elderly…
Johnny Thunder's life had been hell for the last few decades. Everyone around him believed him to be crazy since he rambled about supposed lost heroes and how it was all his fault. He had been committed to a home for the elderly, who kept trying to up his medication.
But he wasn't crazy. For the past few decades, Johnny had been trying to bring his friends back. Back in the sixties, the government was threatening him and his friends to retire, or else they would be branded as traitors. To save his friends, Johnny had called upon his genie, the Thunderbolt, and wished that everyone would forget about the JSA.
Unfortunately, it was only after the wish had been granted that the former hero realized how badly he screwed up. He had attempted to find his friends, but none of them recognized him and shooed him away, believing him to be a nutcase. He tried to get some help from other heroes from his generation, only to be met with the same results.
Not only had his friends forgotten their careers as heroes, but the entire world forgot they existed. Johnny attempted to summon his Thunderbolt again to undo the wish, but his powers were gone as well. And ever since then, he had been trying to summon Thunderbolt, but to no avail.
But hope had returned to the old man when a mysterious young man covered by lightning appeared in front of him and told him that he needed to find the Justice Society. And that's what he had been doing nonstop for the past three months, only taking breaks to eat, sleep, and take care of himself.
Tonight was no exception as he sat on his bed, his arms around his knees as he continued to say the magic word.
"Cei-U! Cei-U! Please, I'm sorry!" The old man cried out, not noticing a spark coming from the corner of his room. "Please."
And suddenly, there was a loud burst of lightning that made Johnny jump from his bed. He recognized how similar this incident was compared to when the young man in yellow visited him. But this was different, as the being that started to form from the lightning was a man his age.
"Johnny!" The man in lightning shouted before holding his arm. "QUICK! TAKE MY HAND!"
"Again?" The old man said, his eyes widened in shock. "It's happening again!"
"Hurry!" The man exclaimed as blue lightning started to zap him, hurting him. "They know I'm here! They're trying to keep me in the Speed Force!"
"W-who?" The scared old man asked, only get a yell of pain in response as the man started to fade away. But in an instant, Johnny remembered who this man was. He ran towards the man in lightning faster than he had run in the past fifty years and grabbed his arms.
"JAY!" Johnny shouted before pulling with all his might. The man in lightning burst forth, fully manifesting in the physical world. Johnny landed on his behind and looked up, tears of joy falling from his eyes and a smile appearing on his face. Standing above him was a man about his age with fading brown hair and grey hair, blue eyes, a skin-tight red skirt with a massive lightning bolt on the front, blue pants, red boots with golden wings on the sides, and a silver helmet with gold wings that brought to mind the image of Mercury.
"I'm back." Jay whispered to himself as he looked over his hands. "I'm back!"
He then picked up Johnny and gave his old friend a hug. "You did it, you crazy kid!"
"I did it? I did it!" Johnny shouted as he hugged his friend back, more tears of happiness flowing free. "I fixed everything!"
"Mr. Thunder?! What the hell is going on in there?!" One of the orderlies shouted before knocking down the door. And much to their confusion, Johnny Thunder was nowhere to be seen. A few blocks away from the home, Jay had used his speed to bring the two to the top of a nearby building.
"Jay, I'm so sorry." Johnny said, getting Jay's attention. "I didn't mean for all of this to happen."
This just confused to the old speedster. "What're you talking about?"
"Back it the sixties, when McCarthy and his committee were crackin' down on us, I...I used Thunderbolt. I wished that they would just forget about the JSA. And they did." He said, his jovial mood having been replaced by a more somber one. "Everyone did. Alan, Wesley, Ted, Kent, Dinah. Even the Seven Soldiers and the All-Stars forgot. They forgot they were heroes. Forgot they were friends. And the world turned sour."
He then fell to his knees and began to weep. "It's all my fault."
"No, it isn't." Jay said, offering a comforting hand to his friend. "You didn't change the world, Johnny."
"I...but...my wish…" The old man said in confusion.
"Listen, Johnny. I've been trapped within the Speed Force for who knows how long. And I remember how the world was. And how it changed. Trust me, Johnny. You didn't change anything."
"I didn't?" Johnny asked, wiping away his tears. "Then...who did?"
"I don't know. But what I do is that they're starting to make their next move." Jay said, standing up and gazing at the night sky, lighting striking through the clouds. "Wally was the first one break through, and that started to change everything. Then Superman merged the histories of the old and new timelines together. And they know that."
He then turned back to his old friend. "We're going to need everyone for what comes next. The world needs the Justice Society once more."
And hearing this once more made Johnny smile. After decades of guilt, decades of isolation, he felt a new sense of hope once more. "It's about damn time."
But what the two hadn't realized yet was they had once more altered the course of the world. The moment Jay rematerialized into the world, a shockwave echoes across the timeline. In Ohio, a young historian stopped in his trails as he suddenly recognized an exhibit dedicated to his grandfather. In New Mexico, Ted Kord suddenly recalled how he got the scarab when his mentor died to protect him. In Washington D.C., Courtney Whitmore recalled the man who had given her the Cosmic Staff. Ted Grant looked through a locker at the end of his gym, revealing a worn out black catsuit.
All over the world, old men and women started to remember their lives. And their loved ones also began to remember. And none more so than Alan Scott, who felt a brief headache before looking down at his right hand and seeing a green lantern-shaped ring appear. With a smile on his face, he approached the lantern on his desk and picked it up. He then placed the ring on the glass, causing mystical green energy to shine forth as he began to say an oath for the first time in decades.
"And I shall shed my light over dark evil! For the dark things cannot stand the light! The light of…"
And as he said this, a bright green fire spread over Alan Scott. But it did not burn him. Instead, it began to make the aging man younger, and a new outfit began to replace his usual attire. An outfit consisting of a dark purple cape with green inner-lining, red boots, green pants, a brown belt, a red shirt with an emblem of a green lantern in a yellow circle, and a green domino mask on his face.
"THE GREEN LANTERN!" Alan finally proclaimed, a new sense of life shining as bright as the emerald light that surrounded him.
And in an undisclosed laboratory, a red-haired scientist was observing the mask of Johnny Sorrow. When the former Suicide Squad member was apprehended by the combined might of the Justice League and the current Suicide Squad, she was part of the team tasked with discovering the otherworldly mysteries of the mask. However, she had begun hearing faint whispers from the mask. And right now, it was saying something with a hint of glee; The Society was lost no more.
To be continued in JSA #1!
Author's Note 2: For those of you who don't know, the Justice Society of America is my favorite DC superhero team. They embody everything I love about comic books, and you can bet there's been a JSA-shaped hole in my heart since the start of New 52. And yes, I know DC is planning the JSA's return, but I thought it would be fun to do my own version if I was a writer at DC.
And in case anyone was wondering, I would have Rafa Sandoval as the artist. And like every good comic, we need some awesome solicitations for the next issue (or chapter in this case):
THE FIRST SUPERHERO TEAM IS BACK! Jay Garrick, the first Flash, has returned to the DC Universe. And the first order of business is reuniting the Justice Society of America! Alan Scott, the Golden Age Green Lantern! Ted Grant AKA Wildcat! And many more! But old enemies have also started to return and have begun targeting the JSA. Will Jay and Johnny be able to bring their friends together before it's too late? Find out in "Let Justice Prevail!" Part 1!
And as always, please remember to read, write, and review. See ya next time!