Mahou Shoujo, Inc
On October 8th, 1977, a day that began normal turned without warning into a day that will forever live in infamy. The Dreamseekers arrived, aliens from a far off world that had been observing Earth for thousands of years. They came with huge ships and in large numbers, and they did not come to help us. Their initial targets were the three most populated countries: The United States, China, and India.
Our toughest weapons proved worthless against their shields and armaments, our defenses practically nothing in the face of such advanced weapons and technology. Within days, they had steamrolled over anything and everything humanity threw at them. More of them arrived, in other countries – Indonesia, Brazil, Russian, Japan, Mexico, and so on. In less than a week, over half of the world had gone dark.
Their targets were the people. More specifically, our souls. The existence of a metaphysical aspect of humanity had always been a subject of debate, but few would disagree that these aliens took something from their captives that made them them. Whoever they captured became an empty, lifeless husk of a human being. They lived and breathed, they could answer questions, but they lacked any sort of spirit or sense of self. What the Dreamseekers did with this soul was never discovered.
It was humanity’s darkest hour as the shadow of the Dreamseekers covered the world. The blitzkrieg of alien tech and tactics had blindsided the world and rendered it powerless against such a force. The end was nigh, the age of man finally ending to let the earth return to the state of natural existence from whence it came.
Humans, however, have never been the kind to roll over and let defeat take them without a fight. The will to survive is the strongest instinct that humans have, and though all seemed lost, the light of hope and fortitude still burned brightly within us. Resistances formed in every country, doing what they could against the Dreamseekers. For every human that fell in the fight, another sprang up to keep the fire alive.
From that fire came our victory.
The Turning Point
Though the tale is now told as a popular bedtime story, the real details of the first Savior’s mundane persona have been lost to the mists of time. All we know about her is what her Savior form was that her name was Enfine, and she wielded a sword and a shield.
She was the first to Spark, and it was from her that we learned of humanity’s true potential. The very actions taken by the Dreamseekers to diminish and destroy all hope we had left only caused her fire to burn brighter, and it eventually grew so hot and so great that it could not be contained inside of her soul any longer.
With a flash of light and a ray of sun that pierced through the clouds, Enfine appeared, dressed in a suit of shining white armor and carrying a knight’s sword and round shield. The Dreamseekers fell back, the light literally searing the flesh off of their bodies. Enfine raised her sword to the sky, and from it emerged a a massive beam of light that shot high into the sky.
The light was visible all around the world, in every country, to every person in every place, at the same time. The signal rekindled the fading light of hope, and many of those who were nearly at the end of their times found that they had more courage to fight than ever before.
All over the world, ordinary people found themselves clad in armor and brandishing powerful weapons. Those who had burned brightest were now able to weaponize and utilize that hope that they had tightly clung to. They stood as rallying points for the remaining humans, marshaling them to a unified cause and turning their piecemeal attempts at resistance into an effective rebellion.
Within two weeks, the Saviors had driven the invasion fleets back, reclaiming much of the land of the earth. Every step they made into their former territories gained them ground. Every camp of humans they saved got them soldiers and Saviors. The Dreamseekers found themselves fighting a losing battle, and they soon realized that if they didn’t leave soon, they’d be fighting a war for their ships – and if humanity could do such powerful fighting with their own technology, what could they do with the Dreamseeker’s tech?
The aliens left, but they left two things behind: first, a promise to return to earth and take over this planet once and for all (despite their loses) and second, a planetary bombardment that drove massive, shadowy spikes deep into the crust of the earth. Wherever they hit, the soil itself turned into poison and decay. The earth became debilitated, rotting away the plants and even killing the animals that lived there. Not even the light of the Saviors could entirely keep the shadow at bay.
Humanity’s victory, it seemed, would be very short lived.
Converging with haste at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the Saviors quickly hatched a plan. By combining their efforts and digging as deep into their souls as they could, they tore the shadows from the world, creating an alternate Earth that took the disease. Earth Prime, our Earth, was saved from her sickness. The other Earth, a pale and infected copy that became known as the Shadowlands, was thrust into another dimension to keep it away from the planet.
Brave as they were, and powerful as this act was, this cost the Saviors their lives. Those who had kept humanity alive during that dark times of the Dreamseeker invasion were gone. As one, the planet mourned for their fallen heroes, vowing to keep their memory and sacrifice alive forever.
The Story So Far
The light of hope, now that it had blazed bright, could never fully be extinguished. As the stain of the Dreamseekers remained, so did the legacy and glow of the Saviors. New Saviors appeared, stepping up to fight what was left of humanity’s greatest foe. Time passed, and the world rebuilt, restoring life to the scorched and scarred areas of the planet.
Though the world was now relatively safe, the job of the Saviors had changed a little. No more were they needed to drive off the invasion – instead, they now had to act to contain what broke over from the Shadowlands. They had gone from warriors to watchmen, acting in the interest of the public.
Soon, questions began to arise. Why were they chosen? Who chose them? What would become of them and their normal lives? Did they have to help out in normal police work or rebuilding efforts? Would they be registered and tracked?
Conflicts were fairly common as the Saviors attempted to fit in. They were more often than not compared to costumed vigilantes or freelance superheroes, and many of them began to assist in local police efforts. Though amicable and useful, their potential for destruction and accidental damage (along with acting as an independent entity, not beholden to the standards and safeguards of normal police officers or detectives) lead to more than one lawsuit against their Savior persona. The city began to foot the bill, but the cost of funding these people (and their damages) began to do a number on the city budgets. A new solution was needed.
Enter Savior’s Grace, originally an investment firm, now with a new division. Their goal was to not only pay for the needed equipment and living expenses for certain Saviors, but to use their popularity to get money for said payment. After all, they were practically superheroes. They had a lot of market potential.
Savior’s Grace began a wide-scale campaign with marketing and licensing, creating all kinds of products based on their clients. Though slow at first, the merchandise sold out, and they broadened their horizons away from simple action figures and clothing to things like movies, TV shows, social media accounts, and even breakfast cereals.
The company profited handsomely from the gear, and the Saviors found themselves with more support and monetary compensation than they had ever dreamed of. Lots of Saviors began wanting to sign on, and SG found itself overwhelmed by requests. Other companies stepped into the mix, offering their own Savior divisions, and many of them were also besieged with Saviors wanting support. Eventually, the dust settled, and the Royal Suits found themselves standing above the rest.
Now that saving the world has been privatized for public entertainment, the question is clear: how long will the system hold out? So long as the public remains interested in the Saviors, the system works. The thought most distressing to many Saviors is what happens when their companies are no longer able to support them. For those contracted, this is their job. It pays bills and ensures that they don’t need to have another source of income. It protects them from legal liability. It gives them the comfort of always-available backup. It is, above all, security – and when your job involves fighting eldritch abominations and creatures that are after your very soul, you’ll take whatever security you can get.
How long the model will remain, though, is anyone’s guess. Profits are continually at a high. Popularity is still good. There are intra-company contests, and the Savior Games are held every three years to find the best of the best of humanity’s best. Crossovers between companies are common (and often quite profitable), and more than one fighting game has been made with the likenesses of the Saviors.
Yet, the Shadowlands still loom. Many of the original points where the Shadow Spikes hit show signs of the infection, remaining barren and lifeless. Creatures similar to the Dreamseekers show themselves, coming over from that other earth with the intent to devour the souls of humans. The Saviors have a responsibility.
It’s the beginning of a new and excitingly different story.