The Shining City did not at first glance seem to be large; when one first looked at its image one saw a mile-wide city of six- and ten-story buildings of a variety of architectural styles. But the more one looked the one more saw, and the larger the image that unfolded to the eye. Looking at a street would bring to the eye a long broadway that seemed to span for hundreds of miles, through the city and into the countryside and up through mountains and then under the sea and then back into the city again; looking at one of the (seemingly modest) sky-scrapers would reveal a massive, Babel-sized edifice that went up for miles and below the ground for still more miles. An alleyway would twist and turn and become a homey tunnel and then a twisting and turning pathway through incredible caverns. A park would become a jungle and then swards of well-trimmed grass and then a veldt. A puddle would be revealed to be a bottomless lake. And all of this was contained within the seemingly circumscribed limits of the Shining City. What the mages and the gods and those of higher dimensions on the plain of the M'krann knew was that the Shining City, which might or might not be Heaven itself, was all things to all beings, and that whatever one most desired, be it the awesome solitude of a mountain peak or the joyful crowded life of a packed city square, could be found within the Shining City. If it was not Heaven itself, it was literally the next best thing.

And Apocalypse was destroying it. He was now transformed into a massive ball of blackness, flares of hate and evil streaming off behind him, his face on the front of the ball. He roared through the streets and alleys and byways and paths of the Shining City, disintegrating and exploding everything in his path, pulling down and pushing over buildings and collapsing caverns and tunnels and tearing up mountains and evaporating rivers and seas. He did this not because he found God or souls, but for the sheer joy of destruction and the glory of asserting his power.

Darkening his mood, however, was the absence of God and the angels and the blessed souls they guarded. The Shining City, in fact, was empty of all life; even the pastoral scenes were absent of animal life. Too, Apocalypse began noticing that parts of the City were reforming themselves when his attention was turned away from them. When he concentrated he could raze whole swathes of the City down to its bedrock and beyond; but the rest of the City would build itself back up again. And Apocalypse could not seem to make it stop....

Back to Liberators Annual #1