“It just can’t be done,” the administrator said, flicking through a glowing clip board in her hand. “We’ve tried any number of simulations, with every possible type of variation, and we just can’t get Galaxy MW-137 to live in peace.” The screen lit up her frown in a delicate blue as she tapped a carefully-manicured thumb on the side of her tablet.

Star-Lord smiled placatingly.

“Watch this,” he said. He and Rocket Raccoon pulled on their Holo-gloves and got to work. A large, faintly-blue, translucent screen rose in front of them, and—with a few tweaks of simulated dials and buttons—the first few bars of Haim’s The Wire blasted from the screen.


Turning, tweaking, jamming, they worked in unison—harnessing the three-dimensional hologram of a galaxy that appeared in front of them with delicate, haughty gestures and flicks of their wrist. Periodically they would bicker, overwriting the other’s work as they applied the correct factors to create what they were looking for.


As the song began to peak, they stepped back and let their simulation run parallel to one the representative had predicted based off of Galaxy MW-137’s current settings. Her simulation’s galaxy had just discovered nuclear war, and was currently bombing itself into oblivion. Hovering storage crafts hauled various ground and air-assault weapons zoomed overhead, momentarily lighting up Star-Lord’s smug face it flew through his head and onto the non-existent front lines of the non-existent battle.

Meanwhile, Star-Lord and Rocket’s simulation had just achieved world peace. Diplomats from the newly-discovered neighbor Galaxy C-142 shook hands with leaders of MW-137 on a dazzlingly white dais in front of cheering masses. The representative’s world crumbled and became a smoldering, charred mess of radioactive waste.


The simulations ended, the hologram closed, and the song stopped abruptly. Star-Lord smirked at the representative, who was now shifting uncomfortably in her slate-blue pencil skirt.

“Hmm…” she was furiously flicking through her clip board, icons flitting on and off the screen in a blur. Suddenly, she looked up.

“Well. I guess you’re right.” Smugness filled the room like a balloon. “I will schedule the reset of Galaxy MW-137 immediately.” The balloon popped.

“Wait—what? You mean—”

“Yes, obviously this galaxy is flawed and needs to be terminated immediately. We have the factors you input in your simulation logged in our system. We will restart the unit with the proper settings.”

“But, I mean—but you can’t—that means—”

“Yes, yes,” she flicked away his concerns with a twitch of her hand, her eyes back on the screen. “Obviously all the generals and supervisory committees involved in creating this unit will be disposed of as well. Fortunately, it should be a relatively simple process. The planet….Earth…yes, it will be completely scrapped and recreated under more suitable conditions.” She looked up, simulated something like a smile on her slender face. “The Confederation thanks you, Mr. Lord, Mr. Rocket.”

She spun on her heel and strode out of the room—swipe, swipe, swipe—a trail of icons flying off the screen behind her. Rocket Raccoon crossed his arms and glared at Star-Lord.



In the background, quietly…

“I am Groot…”