Adagio 23 – The Planet Mingo
Mingo was one of those most worrisome of things, a cartoonish bad guy world full of grotesque evil dudes and shambling undead Mechanoids. You could tell just by looking it was evil. The skies were polluted a dark, rusty orange from industrial waste and the foul stench of death.
If you couldn’t tell its evil nature by looking at it, as Emperor Slythinus no longer could, you could also tell its rank foulness from the never-ending smell of the place, something Slythinus also couldn’t do, because he was not only blind, but also stone-cold dead. The Mechanoid industry of recycling used flesh gave the place an air of death and decay. The air was artificially regenerated, but no one bothered with purification. The denizens of the planet, for the most part, loved it the way it was. The cityscape was endless, crusting over even the planet’s ample oceans. The concrete-gray and soot-blackened features of the place were oppressive. The most impressive sights on the planet were the well-known Ruined Palaces District, once the site of the Imperial Capitol, before the Galtorrian Jihad had removed Imperial rule back to Galtorr Prime.
The majority of the vast population of the place was now Mechanoids, the crusty re-animated remains of humans and Galtorrians remade into a deathless life-form of rotting flesh and robotic circuits. Oh, there were human and Galtorrian people there who were living, but the effort to create deathless soldiers and an ageless workforce had emptied every graveyard and charnel pit to a point where the once-dead outnumbered the living ten to one
The ruler of the planet preferred to call himself an Emperor instead of a Duke or Prince. Emperor Mong was a cartoonish bad guy in all the clichéd ways that cartoonish bad guys are always portrayed, only cartoonier. I know that isn’t a real word in galactic English, but you get the idea, and after all, I am a scientist, not a poet! Mong wore his pointy little Van Dyke beard in the fashion of Mephistopheles. He loved helmets with fancy carved dragons on the crest and silk robes in bright colors, complete with a melodramatic cape and cowl. He was a brooding, evil, and thoroughly stinky bad guy who only got his jollies from coming up with really elaborate and fiendish tortures for his arch-enemy Brash Gordon. Unfortunately, the heroic Brash had long ago expired in Mong’s prison, and Mong had nobody to turn his terrifyingly terrible attention to but the whole rest of the Milky Way Galaxy. Weren’t we lucky!
The standing orders on Mingo were that anyone who died was, by law, transformed immediately into a rot warrior. These were the brainless Mechanoid soldiers that Mong maintained as his standing army, well, leaning-shambling-drooling army. They were all controlled by that infamous intelligent computer known as the Master Cylinder; Mong’s most evil of numerous evil henchmen.
Now, Slythinus, when he was in actual control of the Galtorr Imperium, had greatly feared the machinations of Emperor Mong. He knew that Mong would one day try to challenge him for Imperial rule. Mingo, after all, was one of only four planets that had ever been the Capitol of the Thousand Worlds. Galtorr Prime, Earth, and Regina were the other three. It had a long tradition of rulership. Each of the standing Ruined Palaces represented a former ruler who once held and lost power in the Imperium, and was a native of the wicked planet Mingo. So, Slythinus had craftily set up a triumvirate of rulers in the Mingo Sector of the Imperium to divide up and dilute the power. He had appointed Ancillus King and Karg Hardretter as co-rulers. These two black-bearded villains had a vicious and aggressive character that easily matched Mong.
Still, Mong would win out in the end. A famous assassin Mechanoid by the name of Ace Campfield got the better of both King and Hardretter, leaving their young sons to fill their empty thrones. These Mong tolerated as long as they presented no real threat to his rule. When Slythinus was himself out of power, Mong was free to do away with both Raylond King and Smoky Hardretter, a thing he hadn’t gotten around to doing since both boys were soft-natured and lacked the evil streaks that ran through both of their fathers.
So, all in all, the planet Mingo was a very, very terrible place, in a way that probably needs six more verys, though I know that that’s not a good word either, especially if you use it too much.