Mohammed Al Maktoum discovered at a young age that he had an amazing and seemingly supernatural ability. One without apparent cause, and which he has since occasionally and with passing interest searched for an explanation for: The ability to cause those around him to vomit violently and uncontrollably with the power of his otherwise-unremarkable mind!
After a few short years of making use of this ability to antagonize douchebags at college frat parties and evade speeding tickets, Mohammed realized what his true calling in life was: To use this power to kick the crap out of the junkie scumbags that were shitting up the city and then see them get carted away by the police... a quest which eventually came to include other forms of crime as well!
He thought long and hard about what sort of super-heroic identity he would assume in the pursuit of this noblest of goals. His asshole room-mate, Douggie, had initially suggested such names as “The Gut-Wrencher”, “Captain Puke” and, upon purchasing and consulting a thesaurus, “The Regurginator”. All of these Mohammed rejected as being “disgusting and stupid”. Douggie’s keen observation that Mohammed’s power was disgusting and stupid made little difference, though it did invite the observation that Douggie’s mother was disgusting and stupid. After a brief altercation which resulted in a broken kitchen table and a black eye, the conversation derailed into one about super-hero naming conventions.
Mohammed pointed out that Superman’s name was in no way a reflection of the nature of his powers; he did not feel the need to call himself “Strong Flying Laser-Eye Good-Hearing Tough Man”; his name simply conveyed the idea that he was better than everyone else, and that was good enough for him, so why shouldn’t that work for Mohammed as well? After a brief flirtation with the names “BetterMan” and “Mr Superior”, Mohammed suggested “The Sterling Star”, a name which sounded kind of cool without being so pompous that people would feel like taking him down a notch or two. This appealed to him on the grounds that nothing quite enraged him as much as having to face the consequences of his own foolishness.
Douggie then asked if it was some kind of Muslim thing, “Like the star and sickle thing on all those flags and stuff.” Mohammed pointed out that it was a star and crescent moon and called Douggie a stupid white asshole, and possibly a racist. He then furthermore pointed out that he wasn’t a Muslim; he was a Buddhist. This was in essence true; he had converted to Buddhism in an empty act of rebellion against his father – a wealthy lobbyist from the United Arab Emirates – when he was fourteen, in the hopes of pissing him off. Fourteen years later, he found that it remained an effective means of getting under the skin of the man who continued to pay all of his bills and periodically bail him out of jail on charges of public urination, and so remained steadfast in his Buddhist faith, in spite of never having read a book on the topic or speaking to another Buddhist on the topic (both activities having been deemed “boring” and “gay”).
No, the sterling star motif simply seemed to connote some kind of sheriff’s badge or something, which seemed kind of thematically linked to the concept of cleaning up town. The irony that he would ultimately come to leave large puddles of stinking vomit wherever he went was one that was almost entirely lost upon the imperfectly-introspective man in this respect.
As the years went by, and Mohammed refined his crime-fighting technique with a degree of success which would have surprised anyone who knew of his secret identity (Douggie having been killed in an unrelated skydiving accident stemming from an ill-considered bar bet some years earlier).
His revolutionary approach of kicking criminals in the head while they vomited uncontrollably on the ground on their hands and knees in front of them until they were rendered unconscious and often concussed – and then posting videos of said crime-fighting on YouTube won him many a five-star rating from the community before they tired of his increasingly-predictable-if-indisputably-e
It was then that he had an inspiration: What he really needed to do was surround himself with people with no self-respect, who would just be glad to have him around and thus keep their traps shut when he lied to their faces and they both knew it. Where this proved inadequate, Mohammed would resort to screaming insults at them in public places and making them accept it, feeling that by humbling them, he could avoid future inquiries, and thus he would have an easier time maintaining his double life and thus protecting them from the fallout of his constant war against crime. The various prostitutes, elderly shut-ins and people with social anxiety disorder who formed the core of his social circle came to accept the abuse as their due, and all was well with the world.
Today, Mohammed patrols the streets of Washington DC. A single silver point of light in a one-man constellation of justice, kicking evil while it’s down so that others need not face it while it’s standing up. He is... the Sterling Star.