Goose on the Fourth of July

by Johnny Craft

***The following is a transcript from The Goosecast Radio Show, airing exclusively to the citizens of Atlas City. The conversation involves hosts The Silly Goose and Evergreen, as well as in-studio guest, King Caveman.***

EVERGREEN: King Caveman, you're the oldest dude I know. You're like, literally ancient. Fourth of July is coming up, so I have to ask, did you trip your dick off the first time you saw a firework, or what?

KING CAVEMAN: Well, first off, what an elegant way to ask a question. Very professional, sir. But, yeah, it was a little weird, but when you're the oldest hero in Atlas City, you're bound to see a lot of crazy things for the first time.

THE SILLY GOOSE: I f***ing hate fireworks.

EVERGREEN: Oh, boy. Please don't ask.

KING CAVEMAN: How can anyone possibly HATE fireworks?

EVERGREEN: Yep, here we go...

THE SILLY GOOSE: You really want to hear the story?

KING CAVEMAN: Absolutely.

EVERGREEN: Buckle up. It's a long one.

THE SILLY GOOSE: It was almost ten years ago. Shortly after Lady Justice and I started working together, but long before I decided to quit and do my own thing.

KING CAVEMAN: Why did you decide to quit working with her again?

EVERGREEN: Oh, no! Stay on subject. That's a story that will take four of these shows to tell. Back to the fireworks thing, please.

THE SILLY GOOSE: I don't really talk about that anyways. But yeah, Fourth of July. I had just finished dinner. Two ice cream sandwiches. Footlongs... Toasted, of course.

It was the first real "solo mission" that I tried to take on. I was hunting down Moonshadow, who was going to use the distraction of the fireworks ceremony to pull off another high profile heist. I won't say how, but I knew exactly what the target was-

KING CAVEMAN: Why won't you say how you know?

THE SILLY GOOSE: Alright, fine! I broke a guy's fingers, one by one, until he told me, okay? Not my proudest moment ever, but can I get on with my story, please?


THE SILLY GOOSE: Moonshadow had been stealing items that granted the owner superpowers, despite having the core ability to teleport through shadows and darkness. Just like a thief, always greedy.

At this point Moonshadow had already stolen a necklace that fills a room up with fog AND one of Ray's ray guns. This time her target was something that meant a great deal to me-

See, The Showman was always a big influence of mine, before I got into the superhero game, because not only did he fight crime, but he did it with style. It wasn't just your standard POW! ZAP! WHAM! with The Showman, because... well, because he was The f***ing Showman! He made it a show!

The Showman was always a big influence of mine

-and Moonshadow was trying to steal his top hat from the Atlas City Heroes Museum. Not on my watch. Not a damn chance.

I do all the proper planning. Everything by the book, like Lady Justice taught me. I knew exactly how to stop Moonshadow and prevent my heroís hat from getting jacked. But, of course, I had to get to the museum first and my teleporting ability isn't nearly as cool as Moonshadow's. I can only teleport to places that I can see with my own two, fading-quickly-with-age, eyes.

KING CAVEMAN: You're not even 30-

THE SILLY GOOSE: Irrelevant! My eyes still suck! I haven't been able to steal the power of "super sight" from someone yet. What do you want from me?

Anyways, I had planned to show up to the Atlas City Heroes Museum a full hour before the fireworks were supposed to start. I was zipping through the city, soaring around the rooftops, feeling the wind flapping through my cape, all that goodness! Enjoying myself. Really taking my time. Then, suddenly, BA-BA-BA-BAM!!! Explosion right in my beak- and by beak, I'm not using slang for "nose", I literally mean, the fireball blew off my goose goggles.

I slam, ass first, into the rooftop below me and guess who was looking at me, like I did something wrong?

KING CAVEMAN: Oh! This is the Roman "The Candle" story, isnít' it?

THE SILLY GOOSE: Roman "The Candle" Ramirez! Star player for Atlas City's Championship Handball team, The Atlas City Gloves. All-Star! MVP! One of the few heroes to the city that doesn't fight crime.

KING CAVEMAN: And he just shot you in the face with the fireworks that he is able to shoot out of his hands.

THE SILLY GOOSE: And he just shot me in the face with the fireworks that he WAS able to shoot out of his hands.

KING CAVEMAN: What happened? Didn't he apologize?

EVERGREEN: Oh boy. Here we go...

THE SILLY GOOSE: Did he apologize?! Are you kidding me?! Not only did he not apologize, but he actually said to me, and I quote "Hey, douche bag, don't you know better than to fly in front of a superpowered superstar?". I mean, the IRONY, to call me a douche bag and call yourself a superpowered superstar in the same sentence... UGH! What a jerkoff!

Hey douche bag!

I told him who I was and what I was doing, but the self-important ass started getting glassy eyed as soon as I mentioned The Showman's hat, and started shooting more fireworks into the air. I thought that was incredibly rude, so all I said was "Right on. Good luck playing with balls next season" and he shot another firework into my damn chest! Ruining my shirt by the way.

KING CAVEMAN: So, now you're standing on the rooftop, shirtless, without your goose goggles?

THE SILLY GOOSE: Yes, but I still have my cape on... and pants, thankfully.

KING CAVEMAN: So, you guys had some sort of epic showdown? Him, brimming with the championship glow of an undefeated season? You, with your chest hair blowing in the breeze, wearing... just a cape?

THE SILLY GOOSE: It wasn't much of a fight, actually. I decked him in the face twice- a nice little one-two, jab-cross, combo- and I used my power to steal other people's powers to take away his little firework ability.

KING CAVEMAN: So, I don't get it. If it wasn't some sort of big fight and all you did was stole his power away from him, why do you hate fireworks? Because, they made you miss out on stopping Moonshadow from stealing The Showman's hat?

THE SILLY GOOSE: Not quite. See, Roman "The Candle" had his revenge in the media, starting immediately the next day.

KING CAVEMAN: I remember this. He said you beat him up and stole his power, because you thought he was a villain.

THE SILLY GOOSE: He WAS a villain. Dickheads ARE villains! Don't people understand that? If you treat people like garbage, then you deserve to be punished! I was NOT in the wrong. I refuse to admit that, ever!

KING CAVEMAN: Then why hate fireworks?

THE SILLY GOOSE: I took away Roman "The Candle" Ramirez's ability to shoot fireworks out of his hands. Not his ability to be the world's premiere handball player. Every time The Atlas City Gloves won a game, "The Candle" would put on a celebratory fireworks show for the fans... and like you said, their previous season, they went undefeated.

At Lady Justice's suggestion, in a move to keep the public from hating me, I agreed to do the Gloves' fireworks show instead of Roman, since I now had his firework powers. I agreed to do the show, win or lose, for the end of every single game, until Roman "The Candle" retired.

EVERGREEN: He retired last season, and still won... a lot.

THE SILLY GOOSE: Nine years! I did 28 fireworks shows a year, for NINE YEARS! Tell me you wouldn't hate fireworks, too!

KING CAVEMAN: That didn't make you hate The Gloves, though, right? Because, I got tickets to the playoffs and I was wondering if you guys wanted to go with me...

I got tickets to the playoffs