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  1. Great Western ( SEPT 10th) Location: small town located between Ohio and south Nebraska. The Film crew has been working for over 2 weeks at the site of the new Western the brainchild of the Director Deept. The film is done completely live using all the tricks of the old timers. In fact the head of FX is none other then Peter James who help with the old John Wynn movies which put him in his 90's. Making him one of the oldest FX man working in the Biz. The Site is a rebuild Town of the 1818 in fact outside of portable generator located in one of the old homes that powered the cameras and the computers the town is powered by candles and lamps. In fact one could feel if one was out of place in time. The only problem was the hi tech building that lit up the night over the hill and the helicopters and vans that drove down the dirt road. Which cause the lost of hours of filming. The film had two major stars and they so far only were able to film the minor parts with the main stars. “ WHERE is my Negotiator “ Shouted the Deept to his aide as the copters flew across the sky again ruining anther take. characters Spoiler the filming is done with over a hundred hidden cameras so the actors can come across naturally. One take from start to finish no retakes but allows the actor to ablive to cover for each other. In fact the actors live in the town to get a feel for the time. there is a hidden coms and alarm to let the actors know when the camera roll. kitty and mech Spoiler mech and kitty can interact with each other or other npc and tell how they feel about the experiment in filming Western with outthe film crew surrounding them
  2. Name: Jessica Clark Appearance Previous to her eruption the best you could say about Jessica was that she was not BAD looking. She kept in decent shape, and had a plain but not unattractive face. Post-eruption her body has changed to a more idealized version of itself, with a shape and features only vaguely resembling her previous, and far more classically attractive. Ironically, she often has to intentionally tone that down to make herself less noticible...a skill she has become adept at. Her body's ability to freely change shape also means she can...and frequently does...imitate other people. She finds this an effective way of reducing the 'OMG' factor of her 'natural' appearance, while not necessarily being mousy and unnoticible. As such, she spends a lot of time wearing other people's faces. She can simulate clothing with her skin, but it feels weird to do so, and she only does it when she can't find appropriate attire for the shape she plans to use. On her own, she wears fairly loose clothes, that give her a range of options, and possible sizes. Because her powers often involve changing size and shape rather violently, she spends quite a bit of money on wardrobe. Personality Jessica has spent her life fighting uphill battles, and persevering. She has a strong will to suceed, but it covers a deep need to prove herself. From her time in the Army, to joining the CIA as an analyst, to her eventual fate, most of what she accomplished she did in her neverending battle with her own insecurities. Nothing ever feels like quite enough for her. It has made her a popular worker, but it sets her apart as well. She has a tendency to be rather intense, when on the job. No-nonsense and patient enough to let others goof around a bit...as long as an objective is not threatened...but rarely taking part in it. This tension often breaks at moments of catharsis...a long-awaited victory, or the moment of defeat...causing her to have a strong emotional reaction at that time. Off duty she lightens up, but she still has a hard time really relaxing. She can be social, but in general there's always part of her trying to think of ways to use her time more productively. History Jessica came from poverty; working class poor in the rural Midwest of the United States. Determined to leave this behind, she pushed herself hard from the outset, and joined the Army after graduating high school to help get money for college. There she was a communications operator, and served in Iraq both during the military operation and the occupation afterwards. Upon leaving the service, she entered college and obtained a civilian degree in Computer Science with some coursework in criminal justice, as well as quite a bit of study of Arabic. From this, and her duties in the military, she became an analyst in the CIA, doing SIGINT work, intercepting radio broadcasts, translating them, and trying to determine if they carried useful intelligence. During her years at the CIA she branched into other areas of analysis as well, but worked hard to try to qualify for actual field assignments. Her work as an analyst actually worked agaisnt her for some time...managers were predisposed not to risk an agent with her skills on dangerous field work, even when her scores might have justified it. Her big break came though when she noticed an unusual reading from satellite photos over the Sahara...a portion of the desert generally ignored since it was nothing but a sea of bare sand. There was a jitter in the thermal feed, a dip. Jessica worked to locate it, then found images of that area...and there in the desert, shielded by dunes from all sight, was a patch of green. It seemed impossible, but worse, it seemed boring. Even if there were plants or something out there, who cared? It wasn't a threat. It wasn't actionable. Jessica felt differently, but getting someone to listen was just as impossible as there being a giant oasis in the middle of nowhere, where there'd never been anything before. But sometimes the impossible happens. She got an email from her manager, citing orders from higher up, instructing her to fly out to El-Aaiún in Morroco, then procure private transport into the desert to investigate the event. Not only had she gotten someone's attention, but they were sending her out personally! It was an enormous opportunity, and she was determined to make the most of it. Naturally it was too good to be true. What she found in the depths of the Sahara was worse than anything she'd expected. A testing ground for something wondrous, and terrible, overseen by a super-powered alien mutant from another dimension. Like the script from a comic book, this read. She met her end there, as the sun set over the blood-red sands, looking up at the face of the one who killed her...but even that was taken from her, as his back was to the sun. Only a silhouette chased her down into eternal darkness. ...until she awoke, buried alive. She struggled to the surface and found the little pocket Eden gone, as if it had never been. It was a fitting metaphor for how her world had changed...she realized now that she'd been set up. The 'mission' had been a fraud. They'd known she was coming...they'd been ready for her. This had all just been part of the cleanup...eliminating the only person in the CIA who was paying any attention. And now she herself had changed too. She wasn't Jessica Clark anymore. She was a ghost...a shadow left behind by Jessica. An echo. Public Knowledge: Jessica Clark's name and past are all on record, and anyone with sufficient security clearance will have free access to any files on her from her time in the Army and at the CIA. She is listed as 'Missing in action,' as her death was never confirmed. However, Echo has not revealed herself to be related to Jessica, and is operating strictly under a codename. Being relatively newly erupted, not much is known of Echo other than that she has accepted grey and black market mercenary jobs from corporations and governments and has indicated her services are still for hire.
  3. Image Credit: Sue-Chan.com Appearance: There's simply no getting around the fact that Roxanne is one of the most physically distinctive novas on the planet, a mixture of woman and fox. She is covered head to toe with orange, black or white fur; has short, stubby (and mostly harmless) claws; a muzzle, sharp teeth, and a pair of fox tails. She has head hair, which is white, and green eyes. Despite these extreme physical changes, Roxanne shows no signs of excess 'taint,' implying that this appearance is a subset of her powers rather than an aberration. Regardless, people tend to stare, and they take a while to get used to her - and some never do. When copying a nova's powers, Roxanne sprouts an additional tail. Any physical nova-related changes are also transferred, causing her to resemble a hybrid of herself and the other nova's nova-specific physicality. When transferring these powers, the second tail disappears. Sometimes the subject who is given the abilities gains the tail, along with all the other physical nova-specific traits Vixen has (fur, muzzle, etc) - and sometimes they simply gain the powers. It appears to be random, and thus far, a puzzle Roxanne has yet to solve. OOC Essentially, whether a recipient of a transfer from Vixen winds up resembling her is up to the character's player. This is to prevent her from causing mass outbreaks of fuzzy lunacy unless people want that. Personality: One might initially mistake Roxanne for a hedonist, but a more accurate description would be of someone who just climbed out of a 30 year long full body cast. She loves trying new things and having new experiences. Unlike many novas who find their powers isolating, Roxanne finds that her understanding of and ability to empathize with people has only gotten greater. She could be described as super-smart about people, and this ability to sympathize often goes a long way when it comes to getting people past her physical appearance. When doing a psychological evaluation or in sessions with a patient, Roxanne is pleasant, but professional. If testing powers, she is meticulous in her documentation, though you'd never know it watching her fly around like a hornet on amphetamines. Roxanne thinks very quickly and is tough to surprise or shock, so what seems like goofing around to others is her enjoying the powers of a nova after she's done initial evaluation in her head. History:Roxanne has been disabled ever since a car accident as a teenager; complications from the accident took the life of her father not long afterwards. Despite losing all feeling in her legs and most of her right arm, Roxanne became a respected biologist, making her home in Seattle. The arrival of novas to the world turned her profession upside down, and Roxanne's fondest wish was to get to study the biology of novas firsthand - however, much of her focus was on the animal kingdom, and studying took time. So she contented herself with it being a far-off goal, until opportunity landed in her lap. The animal was found atop a rocky outcropping in the middle of a Japanese national park; it was a red fox with two tails, and quantum detection equipment picked up the presence of a considerable amount of the radiation found in the aftermath of nova power usage. Its biology was inexplicable, defying known science; with her unique crossover talents in both quantum-based life sciences and animal biology, Roxanne turned out to be a natural candidate to study it. As the months wore on, Roxanne grew frustrated. The animal was clearly highly intelligent, but aside from that she couldn't make any decent headway. It was a one of a kind specimen, so any kind of vivisection was out of the question, not that she'd do such a thing; without invasive testing, Roxanne's speculations remained unfocused. Was it the first of a wave of quantum-powered animals - would they have to content with super-strong paramecia soon? Or was it some kind of quantum construct, a created thing made with nova powers? The implications were staggering, if true... One night, late in the lab, her frustrations reached a fever pitch. She wheeled her wheelchair closer to the specimen cage and stared the creature straight in the eye. "What I want more than anything in this world, right now? I want to understand you. I want to understand why everything I know about biology, genetics, physics and the properties of matter turns into flubber when something like you is around. I want to understand how that's possible. I wish I could just see first hand how something like you does the things that it does - " Then Roxanne blacked out from a sudden, stabbing headache. When she awoke, her headache was gone, and she found herself feeling better than she'd felt in decades. She discovered the three reasons why in fairly short order. First, the fox had vanished. A review of security footage - which is currently classified highest top secret since it is one of the few known instances of an eruption captured on camera - shows that as Roxanne collapsed from her headache and fell out of her chair, the creature seemed to dissolve into a stream of energy that seeped through the walls of the cage, flowing into Roxanne. Secondly, Roxanne changed, becoming a physical hybrid of both herself and the fox. In addition to the obvious changes, Roxanne's nerve damage and spine was repaired, and when she woke up, witnesses say she did a dance. She did a dance because post-eruption, Roxanne processes new information very quickly and efficiently. "Oh, I freaked out. I had a panic attack for what felt like an hour, and to everyone else it was just a couple of seconds. Then I realized what it meant, and - look, if you were sitting down for three decades and suddenly you could dance a jig, you would too." In addition to her sharpened mind, which understands the biology and psychology of eruption better than most, Roxanne now possesses "meta-quantum powers" - she can shut down a nova's abilities, copy them, and even impart them on others. Roxanne understood that the key to understanding nova powers is to understand nova psychology - so Roxanne has, in the months since her eruption, dedicated herself to the study of the human mind. She's obtained a new doctorate and has secured backing to begin a new career - field researcher of nova powers, as well as a helpful hand to novas who have... issues. Character Stats Code Name: Vixen Real Name: Doctor Roxanne Richardson Height: 5 ft 2 inches Weight: 141 lbs Age: 44 Nature: Explorer Cause of Eruption: Intense Curiosity/Frustration Theme: Meta-Quantum Manipulation (Understanding and Manipulating Quantum Powers) Series: Cosmos Nova Experience: Player's Name: Mike OOC Attributes Strength •• Dexterity •• Stamina •• Intelligence ••••/••• (Rational) Wits •••/••• Perception •••/••• Appearance ••• Manipulation •• Charisma ••• Abilities Awareness ••• Investigation •• Academics •• Computer •• Linguistics •• Medicine ••• Science •••• Rapport ••• Etiquette ••• Backgrounds Backing ••• Influence •• Resources •••• Willpower: 3 Willpower Pool: Bonus Point Allocation: Science +1: 2 Specialty: Biology, Quantum Theory, Psychological Profile: 3 Influence 2: 2 Analysis 4: 8 Theme: Meta-Quantum Specialist Quantum: 5 Quantum Pool: 50 (4np) Mega-Attributes: (27np) (Considered Out of Theme)Mega-Perception ••• (Bloodhound, Quantum Attunement) Mega-Intelligence ••• (Linguistic Genius, Medical Prodigy) Mega-Wits ••• (Natural Empath, Human Nature) Quantum Powers: (49np) (In Theme) [*]Body Modification (Humanoid Fox Person) (0np) [*]Disrupt ••• [*]Quantum Imprint •••• [*]Nova Proxy •••• Taint: Aberrations: Nova Point Allocation: See above Experience Point Allocation:
  4. 0800, Japan Standard Time December 10, 2012 Tokyo, Japan Sunny, 41 F/5 C Naomi started her day like any other, by yawning and stretching. Her larger belly only showed that she was indeed carrying cargo. At this point if it was just one or two children there wouldn't be that noticeable of a bump, but this was 5 children, and Naomi's body had adapted itself to accommodate the passengers. She lazily opened her right eye, looking at the clock. "Connor should be here soon." She thought. "I'd bet he'd never believe this." She said quietly to herself, caressing her stomach. She gets up from her gel-filled mattress that she sleeps on like a cat would their bed, it's design purposely for a felinoid. She gets a sailor-collared maternity dress and puts it on. It was a cute outfit as is... she could wear it after her pregnancy even as it was designed to be used even after the pregnancy. "Could wear this boating next summer. I'll have to do that before I unload." She felt like she needed to, so she laid back down to wait for an old friend.
  5. I started looking at this mostly because Phoenix asked me to. For creating gadgets and more advanced technology, the Adventure! rules are far superior to the Aberrant ones (99% of that being in simplicity and useability). But at the same time, you can't do a straight map over to Aberrant, and expect it to work. The modifications in the Eon Tech Manual are nice, but they aren't quite what I think works, and I'm not talking about the powered armor stuff. So here's what I'm thinking, and let me know if you think I'm way off base with this: For adding options, use the basic same rules, with a few small modifiers: Reduce R&D time by 25% (since gadgeteers in the Nova age have access to nifty things like computers and the OpNet). The die roll for success then subtracts from this adjusted total. Reduce construction time by 25% (due to the wonders of mechanized contruction and ordering cheap parts from China). Having the Speed Reading enhancement will reduce R&D time by 10% per dot of Mega-Intelligence. Having the Fast Tasks enhancement will reduce contruction time by 25% (cumulative with the already reduced time, meaning a total deduction of 50%). Having Adaptability or Tireless will reduce R&D time by 10% each (due to the sudden lack of time eating or sleeping). Having the appropriate Prodigy just gives you more dice to roll for the final step. For building devices with powers, megas, or enhancements: The device must have a base Quantum of 1. This costs 20 days of R&D time that is not reducable by any of the above methods. Each additional point of Quantum adds another 20 days of R&D time, up to the builder's Quantum -1. Raising the gadget to match the builder's Quantum score adds another 30 days of R&D, and a +1 difficulty. Raising it above the builder's Quantum score adds another 50 days of R&D per point, along with a cumulative +1 penalty per point. (example: A gadgeteer with Quantum 4 wants to build a device with Telekinesis. To meet the minimum Quantum score will take 40 days of R&D. Giving the gadget up to Quantum 4 will take 90 days of R&D time, and a +1 difficulty on the die roll.) Gadgets start with pools for Attributes and Abilities at 0 points (meaning that the user rolls their own dice pool). Raising the gadget pool to 1/2 the builder's rating costs 20 days of R&D per trait. Raising it to match the builder's rating costs 50 days of R&D per trait. Raising it to maximum (assuming the builder's rating is less than five dots) costs 50 days, plus an additional 20 days R&D for each point needed to raise it to five. (example: A gadgeteer with Dex 2 wants to build a device with a Q-bolt. For 20 days R&D, the gadget will have its own Dex 1. For 50 days R&D, the gadget will have its own Dex 2. For 110 days R&D, the gadget will have its own Dex 5.) Incorporating a power, mega-attribute, or enhancement that the builder possesses adds 10 days of R&D time per level of the power. (ie, Psychic Link would add 10 days per dot, Mega-Strength would add 20 days per dot, Cyberkinesis would add 30 days per dot) Megas and enhancements count as level 2 powers. Incorporating a power, mega-attribute, or enhancement that the builder does not possess, but one of his research assistants does possess, adds 15 days of R&D time per level of the power. (ie, Psychic Link adds 15 days per dot, Mega-Strength adds 30 days, etc). Incorporating a power, mega-attribute, or enhancement that the builder and all of his assistants do not possess adds 20 days of R&D time per level of the power. (ie, Psychic Link adds 20 days, Mega-Strength adds 40 days, etc). Using any of the above methods, extras may be added to powers to raise them above level three, without needing the matching high quantum score, with GM approval. Having a gadget quantum rating of 6+ does not grant 'free' extras for a power. Also, no gadget may ever be taken with Mastery. (for an example, a gadgeteer could design a device with Holo, with Extra Sense three times so that the gadget power covers sight, sound, touch, and smell. This would make it a Level 5 power for purposes of R&D time, but it still only requires a base quantum of 1.) Quantum Points for a gadget cost 3 days of R&D time per point, and increase the weight of the gadget by 0.5 kg per point. If the pool is empty (or would be empty if a power was used again), then it breaks immediately afterward. If the gadget's pool can recharge itself from ambient quantum energy at the rate of one point per day, add 50 days of R&D time. If the gadget's pool can recharge itself from ambient quantum energy at the rate of one point per hour, add 250 days of R&D time. (All gadgets may be recharged by a nova pumping quantum into them.) Making a gadget usable by any nova adds 10 days of R&D time. Making a gadget usable by anyone adds 30 days of R&D time. Making a gadget usable by any single person who's not the builder (for example, a quantum-powered implant for a specific person) adds 5 days of R&D time. The life span of the gadget is determined by subtracting the gadget's own Quantum score from the number of dice the builder has in their relevant pool. (example: A gadgeteer has built a device with a Quantum of 3. His Engineering dice pool is 11 dice (5 Intelligence, 5 Engineering, specialty in Mechanics), + 4 more for Mega-Intelligence. The device has a life span of 12 months.) The builder can add to the lifespan of the gadget in three ways: Each success from the roll may be used to extend the gadget's lifespan by one month, instead of reducing R&D time; or the builder may sacrifice one permanent Quantum Pool points to add six months to the lifespan; or the builder may sacrifice one permanent Quantum point to make the gadget immune to breakdowns.
  6. Name: Sasha Mewes Nova Identity: Ms Muse Age: 24 (April 11, 1989) Height: 5'5" (1.65m) Weight: 120 pounds (54kg) BWH: 34-23-40 (86-58-102) Ethnicity: Nicaraguan Eyes: amber Hair: black Early Life Sasha's family had all the right connections. Her mother and father had deep political connections and doted on their child. Though the one thing they couldn't het her was some self-esteem. Sasha was a shy girl. She never made friends. She never even talked to people unless she was spoken to. And even then it was very quiet and short speaking. What she focused her energy and time into was art, drawing to be exact. she loved to draw imaginary people doing imaginary things. Her influence was American comics she found online. She loved the idea of villians. What made them tick? Why were they so outgoing. Her art included badguys beating good guys. That, and when she found out what fanfiction was, she threw her self into that wholeheartedly. It was fanfiction that got her interactive with the world. She didn't have to be herself, she was The Mistress of Mayhem. She could say anything she wanted and no one would know her true identity. Time passed and she eventually needed a job to earn her own money. So she took what she loved and made it a job. She made her own comics and characters. Ones where the bad guys were running the show. She eventually cought the eye of the big two, Marvel and DC. They contacted her to work on some pieces. She went under her pen name publically, but the checks came to Sasha Mewes. It was when she started her blog that The Mistress of Mayhem truly took off. She would craft tales of her adventures and draw them all. There was, of course, a premium section where subscribers could pay for the privilege of knowing about the "real" her. And people ate it up like hotcakes. The Mistress of Mayhem was a large success. Still, mousy little Sasha, physically and mentally, was a small person. She couldn't do anything on her own. It was The Mistress of Mayhem. And she was no The Mistress of Mayhem. Well, until one day... Eruption Sasha received a gift from a fan. It wasn't the first time she received such, but nothing THIS extravagant. A plane ticket to the Bahamas. Attached was directions to a private beach. She knew this was some kind of set up. Her lizard brain told her to stay put. Her primal brain, for the first time in 21 years, won over that instinct. She didn't have to go to the private beach. She could just enjoy the trip by herself. When Sasha got to the Bahamas, her lizard brain kicked in again. It told her that this was a bad idea, but for some reason her primal brain seemed to want that lizard brain to die. While Sasha was her normal meek self, she actually made to get out and do things while there. Of course, she wasn't going by the name Sasha Mewes while there. She was Ms Muse. Whatever Ms Muse did, she told herself, was not reflected on herself. She wasn't a curvy hard-bodied bombshell, she wasn't Sasha Mewes. Everything she did could be tagged as, 'Wasn't Me.' A day later she started having killer headaches. Like everything she had done was coming to bear on her mind. Either that or it was a hangover from the night before. She wasn't going to let this ruin her fun though! She had done too much to go back now. She popped some over the counter headache pills and she was fine, forgetting everything. It was later on that night, when she was at a beach party, that they kicked in again. Though this time they didn't seem so overpowering. She dealt with them and had fun. She actually talked to other people. And it was this time when Fate seemed to step in. The party was brought to an abrupt halt when masked bandits arrived. They demanded everyone get on the ground and start pulling wallets, jewelry and other valuables or else people would start dying. To make sure they were understood one of the bandits shot the DJ, killing him. Sasha's lizard brain was in tears, but that's the last time she heard from it. No more whining, she had to do something. Sasha picked herself up, she noticed that her clothes fit a little tight and that her skin was a darker brown. That didn't matter to Sasha, she felt like she could take down the bandits herself. She called out to them harshly, catching all of their attention at once. She noticed her voice had changed too. Had everything changed about her? She scolded them all harshly and told them to lay down their guns. And they obeyed her every word like her puppets. This would have seemed awkward to her any other time, but she had control of their minds and she was going to use the time to play with them like the villain in her comics. This would be fun. She ordered them to run into the sea and swim until they got tired. That was the last seen of the bandits. The crowd applauded Ms Muse like it was some kind of nova show. Though when they realized the DJ was actually dead, the party ended early. Sasha's inhibitions seemed dead to her for the rest of the weekend. For the rest of forever! She was not Sasha Mewes anymore. she technically never had to be again. Her mind and body morphed into everything the The Mistress of Mayhem character she made. Her primal brain had won the war and her lizard brain had all but died. Turning Point The next two years were a blur of debauchery for her. Whatever she wanted she got. If not from her amazing new attitude and appearance, then from her ability to twist people's wills against them. All of her 'adventures' were covered on her website. She carried a camera everywhere. And there was no shortage of others with cameras around her. Life was imitating art. She had crushed Sasha Mewes's identity under her primal brain's heel. Ms Muse, the Mistress of Mayhem was all that seemed to be left. The Mistress of Mayhem was still a hedonistic thrillseeker, but her 'adventures' were less beat up the good guy and more about how she used her wiles to get things done in her favor. She appealed to her old fanbase also, but the new people were coming to see her for other things that superhero stuff. She was glad to facilitate both and collect a nice fee. One night the whole thing came to bear. Ms Muse was at an end of summer party in the States. One girl, Amanda, had been hanging around her all night. Well, more than any usual person. Amanda was cute for a baseline. And eventually the two struck up a conversation. Amanda was a fan of The Mistress of Mayhem since the beginning. She had always wanted to meet her in person and this was such an honor for her. Ms Muse was impressed with her knowledge and, well, her looks. She eventually excused herself and took Amanda back to her place. Amanda was thrilled that Ms Muse had chosen her out of all the guys and girls there. She saw it as a blessing from her goddess. A night of pleasure later, Amanda told Ms Muse of her devotion to her. She told her that she had been following her adventures personally for the past few months and had the pictures to prove it. She told her of how her husband and child (who she had named after Ms Muse) were stepping in between she and her love. Sasha's lizard brain perked up again. It was not as skittish before, but it told her that this needed to end this right now. Sasha agreed with her instinct for the first time in two years. She was a bit scared, something she hadn't been in a while. She waited for Amanda to fall asleep and then left. Sasha went back home and thought about things. How she was perceived by the public. How she was affecting people. She damn sure wasn't a role model. She never asked to be. Her brains were conflicted on what she wanted to do and what she needed to do.
  7. Related to my houserule expanded Chrysalis system (here), years ago I wrote these character creation guidelines for nova characters, which I then basically forgot about. I recently rediscovered and revised them to include all sourcebooks. A potential area of controversy in Aberrant playing is how much freedom players should have in choosing nova abilities for their characters, at character creation and later. Some advocate near-total freedom, while others call for every ability to fit within the strict frame of an overall theme or special effect. Some super-hero games have gone so far down this approach as to define some kind of character classes: the strong, tough brick, the hot-headed energy projector, and so on. I have always strongly leaned for the permissive position, since the stereotype I hated the most in superhero RPGs was the way they often tried to pigeonhole characters in decrepit stereotypes right away from Silver-Age comics: the tough-headed, loyal, not-so-intelligent brick, the impulsive, hot-headed energy projector or weather manipulator, the amoral, stealthy skulker, and so on. After one has seen the first ten clones of Hulk, the Flash, or the Human Torch, one has seen all of them. Moreover, one of the most interesting, refreshing features of Aberrant was the powers array of a given nova was to be not just the direct result of a camp, stupid "origin", but both the projection of the nova-to-be conscious and unconscious psyche, and of the way said psyche reacted to an extreme situation. However, unguided creative freedom may lead to poorly-thought, awkward assembles of totally-unrelated abilities, evenlack of strict 'theme' for a character's powers is not necessarilyl a symptom of system abuse. Therefore the better option may well be to define some loose guidelines for choosing nova abilities in accordance with the psychology of the character. The Archetype/Super-Ego Define the ideal archetype of the character: the ideal image he’d like to become if a genie ever handed him he power to rebuild himself from the ground up. This could be a historical character, a mythical personage, or one out from fiction. It should not necessarily be the one-dimensional incarnation of a strict special-effect theme: think about the gods of polytheistic religions. They usually embody a main archetype as their main feature, like Sun Lord or the Wise Warrior, but they also have several secondary attributes, sometimes apparently unrelated to the main archetype: e.g. Poseidon was the sea god, but he also sent earthquakes. Wotan was a warrior god, and the patron of berserkers, but also a trickster and the god of rune-magic. Translate the abilities of the archetype in mega-attributes and nova powers. These powers often develop immediately after the eruption, as the character realizes he has become a nova. Think about the side effects the features of the archetype would have if they suddenly got out of control. This is often the way a character’s taint manifests as aberrations. A good guideline to define the ideal self-image of a nova character might be to use a modified, more general form of the Terat Archetypes (Marvel, Monster & Portent): they allow a relatively simple core idea to structure a character’s nova abilities around, and they also have some sound psychological roots and mythological overtones (e.g. the Priest-Shaman, Warrior and Artisan triad of Indo-European mythology). We can define three different Archetypes: the Leader, the Warrior, and the Mind. Every eruption opens up the new nova to previously unattainable levels of self-expression, influence, and control, over the self and the world. An Archetype is the psychological/spiritual facet through such a newfound potential expresses itself. Most of a character’s nova abilities should somehow fit with the character’s Archetype. The Leader. This Archetype finds realization though the influence and impact it has on others. Its role is to lead, inspire and challenge, display the full potential of the nova nature for all to see, and offer an irresistible example. Typical powers and Mega-Attributes are those that allow to influence, impress and control others, and flashy, eye-catching powers. Good nova abilities for Leaders include: Social Mega-Attributes, Physical Mega-Attributes, Mega-Wits, Aberration Transfer, Animal/Plant Mastery, Armor, Bioluminescence, Biomanipulation, Bodymorph, Claws, Deflect/Redirect, Disintegration, Disorient, Domination, Elemental Anima, Elemental Authority, Elemental Mastery, Empathic Manipulation, Flight, Force Field, Gravity Control, Healing, Hypermovement, Holo, Hypnosis, Immobilize, Immolate, Immortality, Impact, Magnetic Mastery, Matter Creation, Mirage, Molecular Manipulation, Momentum Control, Neogenesis, Node Spark, Nova Proxy, Quantum Authority, Quantum Bolt, Quantum Conception, Quantum Construct, Quantum Conversion, Quantum Regeneration, Quantum Weapon, Reincarnation, Resurrection, Shapeshift, Shroud, Silence, Sizemorph (Grow), Strobe, Stun Attack, Telekinesis, Teleport, Warp, Weather Manipulation. Aberrations that Leaders may manifest include: Aberrant Eyes/Ears/Nose/Skin/Tongue, Aberrant Hair, Absent-Minded, Addictive Visage, Allergic Reaction, Altered Biochemistry, Altered Gestation, Altered Tongue, Androgynous, Anima Banner, Antennae, Atavistic Posture, Attention Deficit Disorder, Bad Temper, Bald, Bipolar Disorder, Black Thumb, Boneless Digits, Bug Eyes, Bulging Muscles, Bull in a China Shop, Cannot Lie, Chromatic Hair, Cilia/Suckers, Clockwork, Collateral Damage, Colored Skin, Compulsive Blackmailer, Contagious, Convivial, Cramps, Crushing Grip, Cyclops, Delusions, Dictator, Distinctive Look, Disturbing Voice, Doppelganger Syndrome, Dunamikophobia, Energy Emission, Enlarged Eyes/Ears, Enlarged Hands/Feet, Ennui, Estrus, Extra Sensory Organs, Fashion Disaster, Fast Speech, Feeding Requirement, Fingerprints, Flashbacks, Flippant, Footprints, Four-Color Caricature, Frantic, Fur/Feathers/Scales, Fragile, Gill Flaps, Glory Hound, Glow, Goliath Syndrome, Gravitas, Greedy, Habitually Sneaky, Hairless, Heartthrob, Hermaphrodite, Heavyweight, Hibernation, Hormonal Imbalance (Lust), Hormonal Imbalance (Rage), Hubris, Hyperflexiblity, Ichor, Impulsive, Incredible, Inhuman Grace, Intrigue Junkie, Judas Syndrome, Malformed Muscles, Masochism, Mega-Bitch, Mega-Devious, Mega-Klutz, Mega-Vanity, Megalomania, Metabolic Quirk, Mischievous, Misinterpreted, Mood Swings, Molt, Monodexterity, Multiple Personality Disorder, Muscular Strain, Neckless, Negotiator, Nervous Tic, Obsession, Obsessive/Compulsive Disorder, Object of Desire, On Edge, Oozing Skin, Oversized Limbs, Paranoia, Party Animal, Parasite, Pathological Liar, Permanent Power, Prankster, Prima Donna, Psyche Mirror, Quantum Beacon, Quiver, Radioactive/Taint Bleed, Ravenous, Restricted Diet, Retarded Aging, Romance Junkie, Romantic Irresistibility, Sadism, Samson Syndrome, Screwball Magnet, Second Self, Seizures, Sex Object, Sexual Aberrations, Sheer Hideousness, Shifting Features, Sinister, Sloughed Flesh, Sociopathic, Soft Touch, Spastic, Sponge, Strange Scent, Surreality, Sweathog, Symbiont, Tactless, Temperature Change, Teratodactyl, Twisted Limbs, Twisted Perspective, Twisted Sense of Humor, Uncontrollable Power, Unearthly Beauty, Unsure Footing, Vestigial Limbs, Vulnerability. The Fighter. This kind of nova focuses on action, struggle and individualistic self-realization. To them, all of existence is a struggle to realize their personal potential and beliefs in the face of a hostile or uncaring cosmos. They find themselves best comfortable with action, not words, and are ready and willing to make their point in the maw of any beast. Typical powers and Mega-Attributes are those that enhance the personal capabilities, allow a greater control on the environment and increase fighting chances and likelihood of survival. Good nova abilities for Fighters include: Physical Mega-Attributes, Mega-Perception, Mega-Wits, Mega-Appearance, Aberration Transfer, Absorption, Armor, Biomanipulation, Body Modification, Bodymorph, Boost, Chimeric Aberration, Claws, Clone, Deflect/Redirect, Density Control, Disintegration, Elemental Anima, Elemental Authority, Elemental Mastery, Entropy Control, Flight, Force Field, Gravity Control, Healing, Hypermovement, Immobilize, Immolate, Immortality, Impact, Invisibility, Invulnerability, Luck, Magnetic Mastery, Matter Chamaleon, Matter Consumption, Matter Creation, Molecular Authority, Molecular Manipulation, Necromimicry, Neogenesis, Node Spark, Poison, Quantum Authority, Quantum Bolt, Quantum Conception, Quantum Construct, Quantum Forgery, Quantum Imprint, Quantum Leech, Quantum Regeneration, Quantum Vampire, Quantum Weapon, Reincarnation, Resurrection, Shapeshift, Sizemorph (Grow), Sizemorph (Shrink), Spatial Manipulation Stun Attack, Telekinesis, Teleport, Transmit, Warp, Weather Manipulation. Aberrations that Fighters may manifest include: Aberrant Eyes/Ears/Nose/Skin/Tongue, Aberrant Hair, Absent-Minded, Addictive Visage, Allergic Reaction, Altered Biochemistry, Altered Gestation, Anima Banner, Antennae, Atavistic Posture, Attention Deficit Disorder, Bad Luck, Bad Temper, Bipolar Disorder, Black Thumb, Boneless Digits, Bug Eyes, Bulging Muscles, Bull in a China Shop, Chromatic Hair, Cilia/Suckers, Clockwork, Collateral Damage, Colored Skin, Contagious, Cramps, Crushing Grip, Cyclops, Delusions, Distractible, Distinctive Look, Disturbing Voice, Doppelganger Syndrome, Dunamikophobia, Energy Emission, Enlarged Eyes/Ears, Enlarged Hands/Feet, Estrus, Extra Sensory Organs, Eye of the Beholder, Fashion Disaster, Fast Speech, Feeding Requirement, Fingerprints, Flashbacks, Footprints, Four-Color Caricature, Frantic, Fur/Feathers/Scales, Gill Flaps, Glory Hound, Glow, Goliath Syndrome, Habitually Sneaky, Hardened Skin, Heavyweight, Heartthrob, Hibernation, Hormonal Imbalance (Lust), Hormonal Imbalance (Rage), Hubris, Hyperflexibility, Impulsive, Inhuman Grace, Jinx, Malformed Muscles, Masochism, Mega-Bitch, Mega-Klutz, Megalomania, Metabolic Quirk, Mood Swings, Molt, Monodexterity, Multiple Personality Disorder, Muscular Strain, Neckless, Nervous Tic, Obsession, Obsessive/Compulsive Disorder, Object of Desire, On Edge, Oozing Skin, Oversized Limbs, Paranoia, Party Animal, Parasite, Permanent Power, Prima Donna, Psyche Mirror, Quantum Beacon, Quiver, Radioactive/Taint Bleed, Rampant Synesthesia, Ravenous, Restricted Diet, Retarded Aging, Romance Junkie, Romantic Irresistibility, Sadism, Samson Syndrome, Schizophrenia, Second Self, Seizures, Sensitive, Sensory Dysfunction, Sex Object, Sexual Aberrations, Sheer Hideousness, Shifting Features, Sinister, Sloughed Flesh, Sociopathic, Spastic, Spurs, Strange Scent, Surreality, Supersensitive, Sweathog, Symbiont, Temperature Change, Teratodactyl, Twisted Limbs, Uncontrollable Power, Uncontrollable Transformation, Unsure Footing, Twisted Perspective, Vestigial Limbs, Voyeurism, Vulnerability. The Savant This Archetype focuses on discovery, understanding, insight and introspection. These novas are contemplative and analytical souls driven to explore and uncover the mysteries of the world and the potential of their own mind. Understanding everything beyond their current knowledge and expanding the ability of their will to shape the world are their main concerns. Good nova abilities for Savants include: Mental Mega-Attributes, Mega-Charisma, Mega-Manipulation, Animal/Plant Mastery, Armor, Biomanipulation, Cyberkinesis, Deflect/Redirect, Disease Authority, Disimmunize, Disintegration, Disorient, Disrupt, Domination, Elemental Anima, Elemental Authority, Elemental Mastery, Empathic Manipulation, Entropy Control, ESP, Flight, Force Field, Gravity Control, Healing, Holo, Hypnosis, Immobilize, Immortality, Incorporation, Information Manipulation, Intuition, Invisibility, Luck, Magnetic Mastery, Matter Creation, Mental Blast, Mirage, Molecular Authority, Molecular Manipulation, Momentum Control, Node Spark, Poison, Premonition, Psychic Shield, Quantum Authority, Quantum Awareness, Quantum Bolt, Quantum Construct, Quantum Forgery, Quantum Imprint, Quantum Regeneration, Reanimate, Reincarnation, Resurrection, Sensory Shield, Spatial Manipulation, Strobe, Stun Attack, Telekinesis, Telepathy, Teleport, Temporal Manipulation, Transmit, Warp, Weather Manipulation. Aberrations that Savants may manifest include: Absent-Minded, Aberrant Eyes/Ears/Nose/Skin/Tongue, Albinism, Allergic Reaction, Altered Gestation, Altered Tongue, Amnesia, Analytical, Anima Banner, Antennae, Attention Deficit Disorder, Bad Luck, Bad Temper, Bald, Big Head, Bipolar Disorder, Black Thumb, Bug Eyes, Cannot Lie, Cold, Cold-Blooded, Compulsive Blackmailer, Contagious, Convivial, Cowardice, Delusions, Dictator, Distractible, Disturbing Voice, Enlarged Eyes/Ears, Ennui, Estrus, Extra Sensory Organs, Eye of the Beholder, Fashion Disaster, Feeding Requirement, Flashbacks, Flippant, Four-Color Caricature, Fragile, Frantic, Glory Hound, Gravitas, Greedy, Habitually Sneaky, Hairless, Heartthrob, Heavyweight, Hormonal Imbalance (Lust), Hormonal Imbalance (Rage), Hubris, Hunchback, Hyde Syndrome, Immobile, Impotence, Impulsive, Incredible, Intrigue Junkie, Jinx, Judas Syndrome, Laughable, Legless, Light Touch, Masochism, Mega-Devious, Mega-Klutz, Megalomania, Mischievous, Misinterpreted, Mood Swings, Monodexterity, Multiple Personality Disorder, Muscular Atrophy, Negotiator, Nervous Tic, No Sense of Humor, Obsession, Obsessive/Compulsive Disorder, On Edge, Paranoia, Pathological Liar, Permanent Power, Prankster, Prima Donna, Quantum Undeath, Radioactive/Taint Bleed, Rampant Synesthesia, Retarded Aging, Romance Junkie, Romantic Irresistibility, Schizophrenia, Screwball Magnet, Second Self, Seizures, Sensitive, Sensory Dysfunction, Sexless, Sinister, Skeletal Atrophy, Sociopathic, Soft Touch, Sponge, Supersensitive, Surreality, Tactless, Transparent Skull, Twisted Perspective, Twisted Sense of Humor, Uncontrollable Power, Unearthly Beauty, Vestigial Body, Voyeurism, Vulnerability. The Ego Many people develop a strong interest and/or identify with some natural or social phenomena, and make up a career or a hobby studying, working, or dealing with it. After the eruption, this may translate in nova powers or enhancements that allow control of this aspect of nature or make the character the best in dealing with it, such as a Mastery technique or a Mega-Attribute. As for the Archetype, these powers develop immediately after the eruption, and may be the source of aberrations. Everybody has the nagging, recurring fantasy about being significantly better in some personal feature: stronger, tougher, quicker, smarter, more charismatic or appealing than the reality. It is a universal theme since adolescence, so every character is likely and entitled to develop some (up to 4-5) Mega-Attributes even if his Archetype, personality or eruption do not otherwise call for them (most do, anyway). These do not necessarily belong to the same category. Several people desire to be both stronger and smarter, or tougher and sexier. On the other hand, it is a rare person who really cares about being the best at everything, so a nova is unlikely to develop Mega-Attributes in almost all of the attributes. In addition, almost all novas are likely to manifest at least some degree of Mega-Stamina, since anybody desires to lay down the burdens and frailties of the human body, such as age, disease, and physical imperfections, and it is a natural outgrowth of the features of nova form. The Id Develop the unconscious side of the character: everybody has hidden fears, desires, impulses he is unaware of. They often show up as the character flaws, personality quirks, weaknesses and vices of the character. Think about how these flaws would translate in superhuman features if magnified beyond all measure. These powers generally are appear either at the moment of eruption or later than other powers, and are often strong but tainted. Many aberrations are the expression of powers tied to the “dark side” of the character. Aggression, seduction and defense are powerful and universal instinctual impulses, so any nova is likely to develop some (1-3) powers that are the manifestation of them, such as an offensive (like Mega-Strength or Quantum Bolt) or defensive power (like Armor or Force Field), or a Social Mega-Attribute. Fight or Flee Reaction The eruption is generally a significant force in developing a nova’s outlook. If one or more of the powers or Mega-Attributes called for by the character’s personality are adapt for dealing with the situation, they manifest at the eruption, and are generally the most powerful the character will have. Otherwise, choose one or two powers that might be used to efficiently deal with the situation at hand. In either case, do not limit to the obvious. Human mind may concoct very convolute trails of thought while under stress. Almost any kind of eruption event is a dangerous or stressful event, which is quite likely to activate the instinctual “fight or flee” reaction. This generally expresses in the nova manifesting some (1-3) powers, even otherwise unrelated to his personality, that make him more adept to deal with, survive or escape the situation, such as an offensive or defensive power or a means of rapid escape (like Flight or Teleportation). Identification The character may come to manifest some nova abilities simply because of cultural expectations about some powers all novas should have. A century’s worth of superheroic literature, plus several years of having seen those same mythic figures come live on Opnet, has created some deeply-ingrained beliefs about the abilities most novas are likely to display. Moreover, some nova abilities are really more widespread in the nova community than others, further reinforcing the expectation. Therefore the character might have some abilities just because everyone, including him/her, believes that all novas can do these things. Appropriate abilities in this category include Armor, Flight, Force Field, Hypermovement, Mega-Dexterity, Mega-Strength, Mega-Stamina, Quantum Bolt. Similarly, a character might manifest some powers just because they strongly identify with some fictional superhero or famous nova that has a similar ability. This is not usually likely to make the character the carbon-copy of an already-existing nova NPC (unless the identification is strong enough to mold all the mindset of the character and is strongly engrained in his subconscious), but it may cause the two novas to have partly-similar power arrays. Sublimation Lastly, the character might have consciously trained himself to develop some power after eruption. As a newly created nova character is supposed to have erupted fairly recently, he is unlikely to have had the time to develop many new abilities. So a character should be allowed to have only one or two unrelated powers that are otherwise not justified from his Archetype, personality or eruption. Some justification is called for this development: the character has a Mentor, belongs to some nova organization (Project Utopia, Teragen, Elite Agency) that offers ample access to training of quantum abilities (with the appropriate Backing) or has dedicated most of his time since eruption to training new powers (and therefore is unlikely to have high ratings in mundane backgrounds like Resources, or Influence). It is very likely that there will not be enough nova points to translate all the features you think of in nova abilities: nobody said to become one’s own godlike ideal was simple. Earmark the leftover abilities for future developments. These are the new powers the character will develop spontaneously (I.e.: without need of much conscious training) in the future as he accumulates experience. As regards development of new nova powers after character creation, there are several main routes that might justify this: Broadening The character gains better or expanded control on one of his abilities. This may translate as gaining new enhancements or techniques, or powers that are the outgrowth of lesser or related abilities. E.g.: Quantum bolt into an Elemental technique, Disintegration into Matter Control, Shape shifting or Healing into Biomanipulation, Social Mega-Attributes into Domination, Mega-Strength into Telekinesis. Expanding As time passes, new powers that spring from the personality, ideals, aspirations and unconscious of the character may manifest. The character continues to metamorphose into the ideal or unconscious image of himself. Second-eruption The character may well undergo some extreme experience that he is not able to solve or deal with his existing powers and his node may react by suddenly manifesting a new power under stress. Training The character may realize that some power would be quite useful to cope with his type of work, or address with his chosen agenda, and therefore consciously train to develop it. Since developing a new quantum ability is a significant effort that requires copious amounts of time and/or resources, no nova in his right mind is likely to undergo it without a serious motivation. E.g. an aberrant on the run from Project Utopia or the Directive may see the utility of getting shapeshifting abilities, or an Elite tired of being the biggest target on the field might appreciate the benefits of Invisibility. Chrysalis This is actually a super-efficient way of doing 1 and 2. The Teragen nova becomes more and more closer to her personal archetype in her quest for evolution.
  8. Ok, prelude is up, hopefully you are all getting hints of what you are getting into. If you are wondering what you should do next, the answer is nothing. Heh. Tomorrow- or when I have your character sheets, whichever is soonest- I will start you a thread, presenting you with an event in your life that will lead to your eruption. I will leave you with a question or a decision, and you go from there. Please do not erupt until I erupt you. My estimate is perhaps a week of eruption story, then we will start bringing the group together. Update as much or little as you wish, we'll all arrive at the same time. Thanks for playing!
  9. Things were quiet in engineering. Rebecca was studying the functions of the D-Drive that Yomiko's mother, Sakurako constructed. It's designs seemed similar to what she was seeing in early D-Drive prototypes her father was developing, but no prototype schematic looked like this. She made sure not to upset the zero-point generator's fragile equalibrium. The D-Drive and the reactor fed off of what would best be described as a paradox of existance. Somehow a stable, safe singularity forms when the D-Drive interacts with the dimensional tuners... Rebecca was shocked she could figure this out. The technology was way more advanced than she dreamed. It was a good choice to ask to come along. Rebecca wasn't a combat pilot at heart, she was a test pilot. An Engineer. "This ship just keeps in giving us suprises, right Tetsuko?" The android Tetsuko was still getting used to life at human scale. She happily cleaned the floors in Engineering, they sorely needed it. "It is a fine ship... odd someone with this technology just left it to their daughter." "There'll be time for questions once we get to..." A slamming lurch shakes the ship and Rebecca and Tetsuko slam into one of the bulkheads. Luckily the impact cushions activated before collision. "Damn... airbags too..." Warning klaxons start ripping through the halls as Rebecca looks at the console to the main drive. "Shit... crap..." She hits a com-link icon on the console. "Uh... guys... The computer just registered a... uh... "Class Omega Anomaly" and it is advising all crew abandon ship..." = The Bridge = Yomiko decided to watch the calming effect of the eddies of time and space surge past the hull of her ship. She was eating lunch with Daniel when the ship shuttered. "What... what do you mean abandon ship?!?" Yomiko looked at her bridge display and the same warning was coming up. "Shit... no that's not good. A Class Omega Anomaly puts off a fatal amount of temporal flux. This ship is about to jump through a crack in time and space and it'll kill us in the process if we're on board." "Rebecca... this ship has automated homing system. Once it jumps into time, it'll search out the first escape pod signal it can find. Get to the escape pod deck with Tetsuko." She adjusts her coat. "Damnit... there goes our vacation." Yomiko was strangely calm for the imminent disaster bearing down on them.
  10. While rummaging around in my Aberrant archive for different reasons, I found this old piece I had written years ago to expand and round up Chrysalis rules, in order to bring them up to speed with all published material and plug some obvious rule holes (it always felt rather implausible to me that Chrysalis wouldn't allow to change physical Aberrations, since Teras is all about mastering one's evolution). I had also intended to tackle the other obvious flaws of canon Chrysalis system, but I basically forgot about ever finishing it. EXPANDED RULES FOR CHRYSALIS The main benefit of Chrysalis is a significant enhancement in a nova's ability to manipulate quantum. In game terms, the player trades points of Chrysalis for experience points, which he can spend in several unique or especially efficient ways, allowing him to transform his character. Undergoing the Chrysalis grants only a limited number of experience points, so the player will want to pool experience before entering to optimise the efficiency of Chrysalis. The player can spend experience points in the following ways: Reduce Taint (1/5/10 points) When a nova undergoes the Chrysalis, the player can spend experience points to reduce temporary or permanent Taint. A reduction of Taint represents the Terat's greater subconscious control of his quantum abilities, which allows him to stave off the madness that occurs at 10 permanent Taint. Eliminating one point of temporary Taint costs one experience point, while eliminating a dot of permanent Taint costs 10 experience points. Multiple points of temporary or permanent Taint may be eliminated during the same Chrysalis. Permanent Taint from high Quantum or Node ratings can be eliminated as well. A point of permanent Taint may be eliminated in a less expensive way if part of the Taint is channelled in a new Aberration: one point of permanent Taint may be eliminated this way at the cost of 5 experience points and a new low-level Aberration of the player's choice. Multiple permanent Taint points may be eliminated in a combined effort: a –2 reduction of permanent Taint would cost 20 experience points, two low-level or one medium–level Aberrations. One high-level aberration equals two medium-level or four low-level ones. Reducing Taint does not eliminate aberrations or reduce the social penalty for dealing with baselines, however. Terats can stave off madness, but remain alienated from baseline humanity. Alter Mental Aberrations (5/10/20 points) Terats tend to accumulate a lot of aberrations, something they do not see as inherently bad. Mental aberrations can be very destructive, however, preventing a Terat from interacting even with his evolutionary peers. The Chrysalis allows Terats to suppress these dangerous aberrations at the cost of other physical transformations or oddities of their quantum powers. The player can spend 5 experience points to replace a mental aberration with a mental, physical, or quantum one of the same or higher level, or a greater number of less-severe aberrations, chosen by the player. One medium level aberration equals two low-level ones and a high-level aberration equals two medium-level or four low-level ones. Substituting a mental aberration with a single mental, physical, or quantum one of the immediately lower level costs 10 experience points, or 20 points if a high-level mental aberration is substituted with a low-level mental, physical, or quantum one. Several aberrations can be altered this way. Multiple low-level or medium-level mental aberrations may be substituted with a mental, physical or quantum aberration of greater severity. With the Storyteller's permission, the Chrysalis may also be used to swap mental Flaws with mental, physical, or quantum aberrations or Flaws, using the conversion rate described in APG, if the Flaw conceivably represents an aberration taken as a Flaw. Alter Physical or Quantum Aberrations (5/10/20 points) Terats do not view aberrations as a necessarily bad thing: to them, many aberrations are a tangible manifestation of their ongoing evolutionary process. Sometimes, however, certain physical transformations or quantum oddities may be harmful to the Terat, or destructive to interactions with fellow novas, or inappropriate to the personal evolutionary path of the character. The Chrysalis allows Terats to suppress unacceptable aberrations at the cost of other physical transformations or oddities of their quantum powers. The growing control of the nova on his quantum-manipulation abilities allows the character to substitute unwanted aberrations that are the expression of his subconscious with others that are more in line with his conscious ideal self-image. In game terms, the player can exchange a physical or quantum aberration – typically a manifestation of regular Taint that was chosen by the Storyteller - with another mental, physical, or quantum one of their choosing. The player can spend 5 experience points to replace a physical or quantum aberration with another mental, physical, or quantum one of the same or higher level, or a greater number of less-severe aberrations. One medium level aberration equals two low-level ones and a high-level aberration equals two medium-level or four low-level ones. Substituting an aberration with another one of the immediately lower level costs 10 experience points, or 20 points if a high-level aberration is substituted with a low-level one. Several aberrations can be altered this way. Multiple low-level or medium-level aberrations may be substituted with an aberration of greater severity. With the Storyteller's permission, the Chrysalis may also be used to swap physical or quantum Flaws with different mental, physical, or quantum aberrations or Flaws, using the conversion rate described in APG, if the Flaw conceivably represents an aberration taken as a Flaw. Change Archetype A Terat's Archetype appears to be tied to the psychological and spiritual expression of the nova's personal evolution, the focus by which the philosophy of Teras is grounded into a pattern of thought and behavior. As any other deeply felt belief system, it is not easily or frivolously discarded. Sometimes, however, profound personal crises or great changes in a nova's outlook may prompt the Terat to change his Archetype. A Marvel, for example, may grow disillusioned with inspiring others by leadership and example and progressively shift her interest on unlocking the mysteries of nova nature – changing her Archetype to Portent. Or, the growing awareness of a probable clash between novas and baselines may move a Portent to focus on readying himself to protect the One Race in the coming battles, turning himself into a Monster. The player, with the Storyteller's approval, may change Archetype of his character during Chrysalis.
  11. [Four years ago] "How old did you say this kid was?" Joe Horst flipped through the file the colonel had handed him as they waited. In the bunker, the only natural light came from the heavily-screened viewing slits the two men were standing before. Several sets of high-powered binoculars were on the ledge ready for use, and dim red light permeated the rest of the bunker as aides and technical personnel quietly intoned into various microphones. Kinda like a church, Horst mused as he turned back to the summary page and looked at the picture of the youth there. But for what religion? "Sixteen now. He was fifteen when we picked him up. Seems he popped when the Refugees first came through." The colonel tapped one of the technicians monitoring the range's sensors on the shoulder. "How long?" "Ten minutes, sir." "Let me know when it's one minute till." "Yessir." The colonel looked back at the man who, if rumor was right, was going to be the newly-appointed head of the newly-formed Department of Superhuman Affairs. Horst looked up from his reading. "Says here he killed his stepfather." the bureaucrat said levelly. "Accident." The colonel tapped an attached psych report. "The kid's really cut up about it still. It took nearly six months just to try and get him to practice his powers. And he's a long way from comfortable with it." "Hmm." was all Horst said as he looked back down at the page. Then he looked back up again. "So... magnetism?" The one-word question was loaded with all sorts of meaning. "I know, sir. But comic books aside, he's no supervillain." "It's more than magnetism!" The excitable tones of the white-coated woman nearby intruded on the calm discussion. "Our Mr Mitchell can tap into the very currents of the Earth itself." The dirty-blonde hair was piled up in loose disarray, a pencil stuck in it over the ear as she focused on the readout of one of the monitors. "Explain that to me, Doctor...?" "Yurgen. Anna Yurgen." she turned towards Horst long enough to shake his hand. "I'm the project lead on the Mitchell boy. He's quite extraordinary, which is why we've had to work to make his environment as ordinary as possible." "His environment?" "Home, school, friends. It's manipulative to a degree, but we need to keep his feelings of alienation down. Because otherwise, Mister Horst, we are looking at a supervillain." "Oh come on, Doc." the colonel started in a tone that told Horst that this discussion was an old one. "The kid's a nice guy." "Of course he is!" Dr Yurgen said defensively. "But if you try to use him for military purposes, a supersoldier, you'll take that away from him." "He'd be trained to follow orders-" "Until he decides he doesn't have to!" the doctor argued vociferously. "His mind is already faster and more powerful than a Cray supercomputer, colonel. You'll be left with a super-smart young man with the power to cause earthquakes and rip cities apart, and with military conditioning to respond to threats. Maybe you should read more comic books. That scenario never ends well." "The Department of Superhuman Affairs is not, and never will be, a military organisation." Horst said firmly. "It is the considered opinion of the White House that, as Doctor Yurgen says, novas are not suited to being soldiers. We may aid peacekeeping actions - though that's not certain yet - but we aren't in the business of fighting wars." That seemed to satisfy the doctor, and the colonel merely nodded aquiescence. "Now explain to me about the earthquakes thing, Doctor." "Mr Mitchell can manipulate gravity, electromagnetism, rock and minerals. He's not so much Magneto as the mythical figure Antaeus, who drew his strength from the Earth. Though we've been told by the Refugees that there was an Antaeus on their home world, so we're not using that codename. The best analogy we can give you is that Rob taps into the telluric currents that run through this planet - and the universe generally." "So do all novas." said the colonel curtly. "The quantum forces: they all tap into those." "In Rob's case, it's simply more direct." Dr Yurgen explained. "He can make himself stronger and more dense, or reshape metal, or raise huge walls of earth and rock. We think his mental and hand-eye acuity is due to electromagnetic enhancement of his brain and neural system. And yes, he can cause earthquakes. Or, theoretically, stop them." "And the gravity?" "He uses it to fly, and can affect the gravity of an area by either increasing or decreasing it. He's also capable of a form of telekinesis with it, altering the microgravities around an object to lift and move it. Oh, and he can shield himself with it." "Shield himself?" "Oh yes. An intensely strong gravitic forcefield. We've scanned him when he's shielding at full strength, and it even distorts our sensors. EM energy, gravitic anomalies... it's fascinating." "You'll get to see that in action, sir." the colonel supplied. "Wait. Are we going to be shooting at a sixteen year old boy?" Horst demanded, looking from doctor to soldier incredulously. "Oh, don't fret Mr Horst." Dr Yurgen said with a laugh. "He enjoys it." * * * * * [A little over one year ago] "This sucks." The young man in the chair with his sandaled feet up on the table said with brutal honesty, as he levitated the last doughnut over to his hand. The Director scowled at him, and the various technicians, doctors and other officials wore expressions varying between annoyance and sympathy as they glanced down to the end of the table where Telluris sat. "I mean, seriously guys. Novas aren't a big damn secret. But you've got me running around doing sneaky disaster relief, for crying out loud. C'mon, Director! When are we gonna unleash Telluris on the world stage?" "You've been 'unleashed' enough." Horst growled at him, waving a large photograph of the naked rear-end of Rob as he flew off into the sky. "We told you to keep the speeds down below two hundred, but you had to go faster, didn't you?" "So get me a new supersuit." Rob shrugged and bit into the doughnut, wolfing it down in three bites. "What about that new inventor-brain you guys are bringing in? Karrie Diner." "Dineh. And yes, one of the first things we will be getting Ms Dineh to design is something that allows public decency laws to be observed by supersonic idiots." Horst said acidly. "'Gee, thanks for saving that Airbus, Telluris.' 'I don't know what we'd have done if the plane had crashed, Telluris'." Rob said in an affected growl, then smiled at Horst. "See, that's what it sounds like when people appreciate me speeding to the rescue. Those folks on the plane didn't care that my ass was bare." "Oh, judging by the number of snaps on the Internet, they did." said an official, trying not to smile. Rob grinned. "Okay, so there's some publicity. So let's counter it with awesome publicity. Take me off the bench, coach." he told Horst. "You are staying benched until your clothes stay on, and that's final." Horst scowled. "Now lets move on to the training review." "Boring..." Rob sighed, slumping down more in the chair.
  12. October 31 The Refuge had settled in for their first Halloween. The few kids around were particularly excited; there had been few celebrations of any kind, but Fox had ordered this one to be thrown. It was partially a declaration of normalcy; partially a celebration of life and partially a festival to unite the two cultures. There had been some friction between the two: they were two very different people forced together. Fox had done everything he could to smooth things over, but part of the issue was that he’d brought a number of supers with him. It was a huge power imbalance. It was always rough to get people to come into one. Hopefully, the party would help. The cafeteria had food from the stores and decorations, looted from a warehouse in Texas. Several people, particularly those lucky enough to be parents, had put together simple games – ones which the adults were starting to enjoy, too. Candy had been donated from Fox’s private store; he’d gathered it once figuring that it was close enough to food. He was proud that his group had come far enough that he didn’t feel the need or horde candy for sheer survival. The other thing he was proud of was cementing relations with Gabby's group. At the time, the split had been over leadership issues, but he was glad they were moving beyond those. The angelic leader had agreed to a trial run - her people would come and stay the night, participate in both celebrations and see if they meshed again. He didn't like all of her religious stuff, but she had taken some very skilled folks with her and Fox would be happy to see them return. And he was happy that there had been a priest among the locals, so that her people could get their spiritual needs met, too. All in all, a re-merger would a good thing for all involved. The locals had been explained the traditions but where hesitant to join. Tomorrow was a Catholic holiday, and they’d be hosting that. Fox was looking forward to it, even with the religious overtones. He wouldn’t be at the service – which was fine, according to Martin – but he was going to come to the feast, and knew several other supers would show. Ger and Markham would come, too. All in all, he was looking forward to it. Satisfied, the leader of the large island enclave leaned against a wall and watched the party get rolling.
  13. So, I've been playing a lot of Mass Effect and I honestly think there is some potential for the ME universe to be used with the Trinity system. One thing that came to mind was the skill system for it and how it gives those who possess no biotics the ability to still kick all kinds of ass by awarding special abilities as they increase their potential with weapons. The only thing I noticed was that there would need to be something Neutrals would need instead of 'Psi' in order to fuel their greater than average capability and Willpower is a bit to steep of a cost IMO on some of these. This is basically a standard that was recently set up with the nWoD fighting style Merits and I honestly think the system could mesh well. Basically, just like a Psion who buys his powers one dot at a time and gets something for it, a soldier or any other 'Neut', could simply place their aptitudes in weapons skills. Like Pistols for example... O 'Quick on the Draw' - You automatically add your dots in Firearms (the ability, not the skill pool) to your initiative whenever you have a pistol at the ready. Alternatively, you may quick draw your pistol as a reflexive action if you did not have it ready at the beginning of combat. In this case you may add your Firearms dots to your initiative score on the round following your quick draw. OO 'Click, Click, Boom!' - Swiftly you can ejects a magazine or power pack from your firearm and immediately load another one and you're good to go. With this measure of aptitude with pistols you are capable of reloading your pistol a reflexive action. If you are using two pistols at once you may reload both simultaneously with a standard action (requiring you to split you dice pool). OOO 'Roomsweeper' - Any pistol in your hands is dangerous. While this skill is used you half any dice pool penalties for multiple actions applied to firing a pistol and can ignore the weapon's Rate attribute for a single turn, up to twice the weapons' normal capabilities. This ability costs 1 'Psi' point to activate for a single turn. OOOO 'Gun-Fu' - Fire a pistol so swiftly and squeeze of rounds wit such fluid accuracy that it's almost like the pistol is another weapon entirely. You may fire any pistol as if it were an SMG capable of burst fire. OOOOO 'Marksman' - The gun, the bullet, the shooter; all are one. At a nearly Zen-like level of mastery you are a lethal force on a battle field with nothing but a pistol. While this ability is active you may take you total Psi score and divide it up amongst your pistols attributes and you may change them every turn on your initiative score. Any multiple actions you take do not suffer a dice penalty but this ability does not let fire the weapon more than twice the weapon's normal Rate. This ability costs 3 Psi and 1 Willpower. It lasts for a number of actions equal to the characters' Psi score. These might be a bit unbalanced and need tweaking, but it was just something I tossed together off the top of my head.
  14. Yomiko Hino "The Traveler" Yomiko is the daughter of Sakurako Hino and the mysterious Nova known simply as Chris. Her childhood was short, only a year, and soon after that, her life changed further when she inherited the Hikari Maru on her Parents leaving the continuum. Yomiko now wanders on in her Mother's stead, continuing her efforts in protecting the Continuum. Appearance and Personality: Yomiko appears as a 20 year old asian decent woman. She has long black hair, blue eyes which is strange for her lineage, and an almost razor sharp understanding of the world around her that shines forth in her demeanor and insatiable curiosity.
  15. She'd been wanting to go for weeks and with Sonja out of her hair for the night, now was the best time. Talking her boyfriend, Warren, into violating curfew, leaving school grounds, and possibly adding drinking and disorderly conduct to the list should have been difficult, had Warren not been the rebel sort. In truth the conversation was a simple "Wanna go?" only to be answered with a "Fuck yeah." without much time in between to consider the consequences. When Daniel had caught them trying to sneak out, they thought their plan was blown. Not that Daniel was what the other students would consider 'straight laced', but compared to the 'Dismal Duo', Oneca and Warren, he was practically a saint. Nothing went right it seemed. After agreeing to let Daniel come along, after negotiating how much trouble they'd get into (despite the ass beating Warren promised him) if Daniel ratted them out, their 'date' quickly became two 'plus one'. It wasn't until they had to recruit Sakurako to bypass the security system on the dormatory's back doors that the took a downward spiral. As payment for applying her 'l33t' skills on the door, Sakurako wanted to know why which inevitably led to Oneca telling her, then convincing her to come along. Oneca took much love in the corrupting others, especially when they were sweet, innocent young Japanese girls in school girl uniforms. It was too delicious of an opportunity to pass up, so with a roll of Warren's eyes, they were off. Some time later... It was Daniel's turn to roll his eyes as Warren thumbed through at least six wallets that he boosted from the crowd they walked through a few blocks away from their night club destination. He counted out the cash while dumping the wallets in a trash bin. "Seriously, Warren?" Daniel motioned to the money and the wallets he'd dumped. "Ever stop to consider that those people have to eat? Maybe have families?" "Nope, not once." Warren kept counting as Oneca drug him along towards the sounds of thunderous bass. "Look Firecrotch, you wanted to hang, you're hanging. So nut up. You want your cut, or not?" "I get a cut?" Hotstreak asked, confused. "Yup. You were with us, you get a cut." Warren handed a small wad of folded bills. "Well okay then." He shrugged as his morals took a decisive one eighty. Warren thumbed behind him towards Sakuraku, who was taking in the sights of New York. "Just don't tell the Squint, I don't need the headache." Dante's was everything Oneca imagined it would be, plus a lot more. It was a hell themed night club with flame motifs everywhere. She noticed Daniel and Warren didn't mind the way the female staff were all done up to look like 'devil's little helpers' in tight, revealing red outfits the shimmered in the various lighting effects. The music thundered around them as all manner of mutants wandered about the place. Some looked relatively normal while other showed signs of obvious mutations. Some were just a simple pair of glowing eyes while others were a bit more radical, like the mutant called "Ox" over by the bar who was as tall as Sonja (if not taller) and possessed impossibly bulged muscle tone. What made Dante's unique though, was that catered to mutants only. No one knew who the owner was, but it was on good authority that it was owned and operated by a very wealthy and influential member of the 'mutant community'. It was here though that mutants could free from the persecution of humanity, if only for a little while.
  16. November 30, 2012 Hideyoshi Residence Morning Naomi rested lazily on her mattress, curled up as best she could with her stomach showing more and more of her new passengers. The Quint litter was coming along nicely, and already it comforted Naomi that the gestation pattern seemed to match the Human baseline in development. It's been 3 months since their conception, and the well wishers from Department 0 have been showing up from time to time. But something was of dread in her life. Naomi slipped up. She snuck out last month to get some snacks from a local convenience store and a paparazzi got a photo of her and it was evident she was starting to show a "baby bump". The press has been on fire. Department Zero has, of course, been doing damage control. Congratulating the new family, assuring the public that everything was perfectly fine and deflecting conspiracy theories and outright crackpot assumptions. In a way, Naomi felt guilty she foisted this on the people of Japan. She felt she should have at least said something to the people... to give more transparency... but with her now on 24 hour surveillance and being practically on house arrest... that seems a distant wish long gone. She heard Ryu stepping about, training, cooking, and generally being his tiger self... she would have it no other way, but she felt she was taking him for granted. Ryu was the light of her life yet... She heard Ryu was in a nearby room or hallway. She opened a eye from her restful stupor and with a ear drooping she mewed. "Ryu-saaaaaan.... What's going onnn..."
  17. Yomiko was dismayed. "Three! This is unacceptible!" "I'm sorry... The drones need maintenance..." "I've had three different technical teams in here upgrading every aspect of the ship from three different universes and all you can say is you need maintenance?" She crosses her arms. "What am I going to do with you?" Three blushed as The Librarian... the new captain of the Hikari Maru made her way through Trans-Dimensional space. "I don't know, Ma'am." The Librarian quirked an eyebrow. "You... didn't call me mistress..." Smiling she nodded. "Looks like I'll get to work on that hard-light projector drone for you then." Three blinked. "Really?" "Just one thing, Three, have you picked an actual name yet?" "Sanko... Sanko Hino." Yomiko nodded. "Good... you're ready then, Sanko... right now though we need to get to the bridge. I'm sure Daniel will be waiting there. We'll be..." Yomiko seemed to pause in a fugue. "Scratch that... I think something is up... you feel that? The ship? It's moved off course... just slightly..." Sanko nodded. "That is correct, we are off by exactly 3.141592653589793..." Yomiko blinked. "Sanko, That is PI... that is a artificial course correction... Secure the ship and go to condition yellow. Meet you up at the Bridge." Yomiko burst out of engineering, her labcoat all dusty from trying to clean. The ship had been in storage on Brittanian Earth for 3 months. She bursts on to the bridge, with Sanko appearing beside her in a white bodysuit with blue trim on the "seams" with her bespoke pointed ears. "Daniel!"
  18. My name is Lincoln Goode, but please, call me Linc. I grew up on a dairy farm outside of Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand. I am, as far as I can tell, the strongest, most indestructible man in the world. I work for one of the most powerful Novus on the planet, his right hand man. None of this is the most important thing about me. The most important thing about me is that once, in the early days of the Nova Age, I helped gather together a group of Novus, and five of them went on to save the world from the greatest threat it has ever known. Maybe the universe. It started on a Monday, as so many of the bad things in life do. As Duke Rollo is fond of pointing out, N-Day was on a fucking Monday. This Monday, May 4th, 1998, however, started innocuous enough. My mentor, and later employer, August Hermann, had hand picked these five from a group of eleven Novus, Novus that I had collected for him. He told me later that my recommendations had been the deciding factor in all cases. The idea was that we would help carve out a place in the world that was just for Novus, on our own terms. We were young, and naive. August invited them to brunch, to discuss what he wanted from them. It was couched in terms of a job offer, but it was more than that. It was, he believed, the future of the Novus. The future of the race of New Men that had sprung like a phoenix from the ashes of the Galatea explosion. The money was just August believing that people will perform for money in ways that they won't for just an idea. I thought he was wrong then, and I still do. I couldn't tell him that then. I don't know if I could now. But I like to think I'd try. They deserved that respect. I think of them that morning, doing their own thing in their own way. Maybe the last time they truly thought that they could create and control their own destiny. I wonder what they were doing, each of them. What they were thinking about, what plans they were making. Because attending that brunch, accepting August's offer, changed... everything.
  19. [OOC: This takes place after WCGW? and is a continuation of Relax, but is before BEGO!] As Curtis blissfully settled into his nap, the Morrigan slipped out into the darkness. The teen genius was smart, but he didn’t quite grasp the level of supervision that Morri required for any task that had the potential to be disastrous. Sending Morri out to hunt for meat that one intended to eat oneself had great potential for disaster. The night was cold but the huntress didn’t notice as she snaked her way through the woods that surrounded the Academy. Her first intention was to get rabbits, but she quickly realized that wasn’t going to happen. Rabbits were not usually active at night, so she would have to find something else to eat. The feral didn’t have a list of do-not-eat animals, so she simply widened her attentions to focus on all the animals in the night. There was the dog-animal that yipped softly as it roamed in packs, but that didn’t seem very rabbit-like. Morri gave a moment’s consideration to the large rat-thing that hissed and scuttled away into the dark, but she ignored it too. The flying rats overhead were too small and hard to catch. Then she saw the grayish animal. It was bigger than a rabbit, with a black mask and striped tail. Despite the fox-like face and clever hands, it’s body shape was much closer to a rabbit’s. It was big enough that she’d only need two or three of them, instead of four or five rabbits. With a grin, she began to stalk the local raccoons, ambushing them as they went through several garbage cans on campus. Humming Eyem Yours to herself as she skinned and cleaned the bodies, Morri pondered the bird. Night wasn’t a great time for birds either, so she had to get creative. Leaving the raccoon bodies hidden in a tree, she crept back into the night to find her next ingredient. A strange hooting noise drew her ear, and soon Morri had found her bird. It was lots bigger than the star lings she’d gotten before, and Morri grinned with delight as she realized she’d only need two of the birds. Catching them was a lot harder; getting close enough without alerting the birds was harder than it looked. But Morri persevered and soon she had her bird meal. Happily, she cleaned those carcasses and retrieved the raccoon meat too, then headed for the kitchen. When she found Curtis asleep, Morri huffed in annoyance. Lazy! Wasn’t he excited about PIE? Still, he appeared sleepy, and maybe if she was really quiet, he’d sleep through PIE and she’d have it all to herself. Well, herself and Kia. Morri quietly butchered the raccoons and owls, loading their meat into the pie dishes. It was easy; Alex had shown her how. She was very proud when she quietly slid the two large dishes into the pre-heated oven and cleaned up the leftover meat and bones. Then she slipped out to go wake up Kia and let her know the great news! They were going to have PIE again! [This fiction is open to anyone who wants to have their PC woken up for Raccoon-And-Owl Meatpie.]
  20. The bus had been quiet since the attack. The wind blew in through the shattered windows as the bus drove along the mountain highways towards Denver. Some of the refugees talked quietly, but most of them just huddled together, or sat alone with their thoughts, looking out of the windows and at the skies. Martin sat beside his mother, now and then persuading her to eat or drink, which she did mechanically and without real appetite. She wasn't really seeing him, he knew. The scar tissue of the emotional trauma she'd suffered over the last month had culminated in the horrible events of... was it really yesterday? Martin wiped a hand over his face. It was, wasn't it? It seemed so long ago now since his father had died, and he'd become... well, whatever the hell he was. Not a god, that was for certain. Or if he was, he wasn't the Olympus type of god. Never like one of them. Three down. he mused to himself. Three gods dead, and plenty more to go. He looked at his mother again, listlessly staring out of the window at the passing landscapes. He should have felt sadness with his concern, should be grieving. But all he felt was white-hot wrath, chained deep for now and waiting, always waiting for him to call on it. Fiona moved up, finishing the cleaning of her hands with antiseptic wipes and surgical alcohol they'd found. Martin looked over at her, his blankly glowing white eyes illegible but a question in the tilt of his head. The young woman smiled tiredly. "He'll live. We need more and better supplies soon though, or he might get an infection. Scratch that - he will get one. We've got some antibiotics from the pharmacy back in that town, but no telling how long they'll last." She gave Martin a bright smile. "On the upside, we have lots of bandages, antiseptic, needles, gauze and stuff. I made sure Dallas grabbed those." "Good." Martin told her with a nod. She'd cleaned up some, washed the dirt and blood off her face and arms. She was pretty, he abstractly noted. Girl-next-door pretty. And older than him by at least five years. He felt that he should say something more, and managed a smile. "Good thing you're with us. You a nurse?" "EMT for a few months. Working my way through vet school." she replied with a tired yawn, covering her mouth. "Sorry!" she said abashedly. "It's fine." Martin said with another smile, this one not so conscious. He felt warmer inside - not the caged fire of his Godrage that had burned since his change, but the warmth of personal contact. Simple, humanising. "We're all tired. You should sleep if you can." "In a moment." she said firmly, reaching for him. His eyes widened and his heart jumped, but she was merely taking hold of his wounded hand, the one he'd cut at Riley's cairn. "You should be careful, cutting yourself like that. We don't want you getting your bow-hand infected." She admonished him softly, smiling. Her hands were warm and gentle. Martin felt hyper-aware of her touch, watching her hazel eyes as she turned his hand over and unwrapped the bandage, peering at his palm. "The bleeding's stopped, at least. I should clean it to be sure." "The gods don't get sick." It was another woman who'd spoken: Marilyn. The shy housewife from Nebraska. She was awake, her head resting against the side of the bus as she regarded Martin and Fiona. The younger woman frowned, looking back at the already-sealed cut. "What, never?" "No. I was... I served them a little, before I... rebelled." she said quietly. "I didn't mind the cooking and cleaning, but not the... You know." Others nearby, listening in, nodded reflexively, as did Martin and Fiona. They knew, alright. All of them did. "Anyway, they don't get sick at all. No infections, no colds, no aches and pains the way we get them from sitting wrong or sleeping on the floor. At first I kind of believed in them. They were so powerful and perfect: I thought that perhaps they really were gods, or more likely angels." Her pretty but careworn face creased in a sad frown. "If they are, they're all twisted up, though. I used to think about why - why would angels be so willful cruel." "They're not angels, Marilyn." Fiona told her gently. "They're altered people, same as Martin here." Marilyn shook her head stubbornly. "I don't think that's right. I believe that those Olympus people are devils - fallen angels led astray and become evil. And Martin here, Phobos..." she looked at him with a smile. "He's the real deal. He's the lowly that's been raised up. He's like Moses and the angel Michael in one, come to save us and smite the evil." "I don't feel like an angel, Marilyn." Martin told her, aware that Fiona was still holding his hand and poking around the edges of the wound. It wasn't true, of course. He felt different, emotionally remote yet incredibly connected to the Now. He'd never taken human life before today, and had killed three gods and who-knows who else in the explosions he'd set. And all he could think was that it was a good start. A messenger of wrath and vengeance. Sounds like an angel to me. "Maybe you don't." Marilyn said. "I'm not going to say I'm right, but I think you're our angel, Martin." There were some murmurs of agreement and smiles. Dallas grinned at him. "Martin the Godslayer." the older man said, half-joking, then shrugged when the others looked at him. "What? It's like bein' a dragonslayer from those fantasy films. Anyone ever seen that one? Dragonslayer?" The discussion turned neatly to movies people remembered from the old world they'd shared before it'd gone to hell. Martin relaxed a little and closed his eyes, aware of Fiona's fingers as she cleaned and re-bandaged his hand. "Make sure Pammy gets to take a break from driving." he said in a tired voice as he drew his father's well-worn leather jacket - still too big for him but his, dammit - around his shoulders. "Watch the skies, and wake me when we get to Denver." "We will, kid." Dallas said quietly under the soft babble of animated discussion. "You get some well-earned shuteye. You did a man's work today." The last words were lost on Martin, who'd already fallen asleep, sinking into dark, bloodsoaked dreams that didn't scare him...
  21. Manhattan, 12:07AM... Somewhere in a stuffy unmarked van... The glow of the screens lit of the faces of the three technicians as they stared at their instrument panels. A variety of tracking information displayed swiftly as the entire topography of the eastern seaboard was laid out for their research. Anther screen was separated into sixteen viewable areas each for one of the drones that patrolled a given area. Dark and cramped they sipped their coffee, waiting for something... anything. *blip* With the cup still tipped to her lips one of the technician's eyes slowly moved to either side before looking down at the console skeptically. *blip* *blip* She nearly spilled her coffee as she stumbled for the console, now assured that the blips were coming from hers. "Sir! Sir, I have a ping. Manhattan, one of the drones' scanners just got a genetic match! Pin pointing the location." The man sitting in the driver's seat raised a radio. "We got him. Subject 117 is on the move. I want two units prepped and ready for deployment on my mark. Coordinates will be sent shortly... failure is not an option. We need this thing back in a cage by dawn." Lawrence Hunt Academy, Director Drumm's office... just a bit sooner... "I think you're out of your mind." Her flat tone was, as usual, devoid of anything resembling tact or personality. "Jericho, Morri is not ready for something like this. I urge you to seriously reconsider. You'll be placing other students in jeopardy if she has an episode." "Duly noted, Denise," He replied to his Assistant Director. "In fact, I agree with you, but this is what Lawrence wants. He assures me that Morri can handle it, plus she's the only student that possesses senses keen enough for the task. Besides, she'll be able to sympathize." "They're just high school kids, Jeri. I don't like them being 'used' like this." It was evident that she was stressed with the situation. Ms. Childs had a reputation for being the most ruthless faculty member of the Academy. She was cold, meticulous, and anything a student said to her was simply an excuse. She promoted honesty, responsibility and discipline, so as one could imagine she wasn't very popular with the students. "I trust Lawrence, I do, Lord knows he worked miracles for me, but I was older. They're," She paused and took a breath. "They're just kids. What is something happens?" Director Drumm shared her anxiety for the situation yet still managed a professional, charming, and sympathetic smile. "Hopefully something will happen, Denise. Hopefully these kids will be the hope this world needs. For now, I trust Lawrence. He's never given us any reason to doubt his judgment, so I say we give this plan of his a chance." With a sigh she caved. "Very well, I'll go wake them. But I want the record to show..." With a smirk Jericho offered a bow from where he sat in his over stuffed desk chair. "Of course, the record shall so reflect. And, Denise," As she paused and spun back around to face him, her hand on the door knob. "Thank you for trusting Lawrence, and me. I love these children as much as anyone, especially you." "I know..." With that she left the office. Several very groggy minutes later... As the students, still in their sleeping clothes, sat in the Director's office they couldn't help but yawn and rub their eyes. Curtis polished his glasses as the sleep faded from his thoughts. Glacia brushed her hair and Morri... well Morri seemed surprisingly awake. Bright eyed and bushy tailed as the expression went. The girl never ran out of energy it seemed. "First of all, thank you for allowing us to inconvenience you this evening." It was amazing how Director Drumm made you feel like a person instead of just a student. "I do apologize, but this is a bit of an awkward situation. You see there is a boy, like you, out there tonight, alone and in trouble." He pointed at the window to emphasize that 'out there' could quite possibly mean way out there. "Simply put, I'd like you to find him." He paused for a moment then continued. "Now, I know it's late and I know that this is a faculty issue, but you three posses the skills and, well, to put it bluntly, your mutant abilities would be an incredible asset to the search. I'd like to remind you that you are here to learn, not for me to exploit your talents, so if you do not wish to help, I understand completely." "Some very bad men are hunting a boy, a mutant boy and if they catch him, they'll hurt him." Jericho was looking at Morri now, speaking in a manner easiest for her to understand. "I would like your help Morri. Would you use your nose," He pointed to his own nose for emphasis. "To help us find the boy before the bad men do? We'd like to help him, but we need to find him."
  22. [13th January] The winter sun shone bravely down over the Lawrence Hunt School's extensive grounds, reflecting brightly from the snow-covered fields. Here, amidst a birchwood copse in the southeast corner, a second sun shed light and warmth over the silvery bark of the trees. The radiance emanated from a youth who was, to all appearances, sitting on air a few feet from the ground, fine-fingered hands playing over the strings of the expensive guitar in his lap. Long golden hair, usually brushed back into a ponytail or else neatly down his back, was instead draping over his shoulders and face in splendid dishevelment as he hunched over the instrument. Blue eyes the shade of a summer sky were somber, matching the expression on his heartstopping features, and his fine tenor voice was soft as he sang the words accompanying the haunting melody his fingers coaxed from the guitar. Alex was miserable. He'd thought he'd known was being miserable was. Objectively, his rational mind told him that there were people who had suffered far worse miseries than his current woe. Objectively, he told himself that he was being a little stupid. Subjectively, he'd told his rational mind to go take a holiday. Obviously the rational mind had no idea what being miserable was, and therefore wasn't equipped to make a judgement. He finished the song, feeling wonderfully bittersweet, then began a slow, sad Spanish guitar piece as his thoughts revolved, round and round. The romance had lasted... a week? Maybe two? Not much of a romance, as epic love stories went, but Alex's first, and therefore earth-shattering. A few kisses, a date or two, and then... He fumbled the next note, and angrily twanged the guitar string. It would have been easy if Violet had been mean, or callous, or uncaring. He could be angry with her then, dismiss her effect on him as something temporary, something hormonal. But she'd been nice. And reasonable, explaining that she didn't want complications in her life right now, what with her studies, and the uncertainty of Mutant High's future, and a bunch of other arguments that were mature. It was obviously difficult for her to tell him face to face, but she did so, and then she'd hugged him lingeringly and whispered (and here Alex groaned as he remembered yet again) that they would always be friends!. "Bollocks." he muttered, a little angry. At himself, mostly. Because he knew that he would get over this, and he would be able to be her friend... but he didn't want to. He wanted to be sad, and angry. Bloody Revenant spending four hours a day making out with Oneca in the dorm room, and I'm the goddamn gooseberry who got dumped. Music. That was his solace. He could express himself, purge the feelings. He bent over the guitar again, burnished hair covering his face as the golden nimbus of solar light around him as he played, blocking the world out for a time.
  23. Many people received it. An OpNet email, and the news was also communicated by word of mouth. It was a message that some thought would never appear into existence. Undoubtedly, despite the private communiques, it would get out into the world at large and spark a frenzy. The brides and groom in question were busy trying to plan things out and convert the unused Exalt island into a top-notch place for their ceremony and reception- and responding to comments, queries and news intrusions was the last thing on their mind. The two nova paparazzi that showed up were unceremoniously disoriented by quantum force and dumped into Bangkok whorehouses, with charges to their accounts. For once, Darrik did not want the world in on this private time. There's A Party Here In Agrabah Anyone who is Darrik's family, friends or otherwise have good reason to be invited to the marriage, PC or NPC, can come. Clear it with me if it's ambiguous. And go ahead and post reactions.
  24. Been pondering what the trinity setting would be like if, China had to nuke the planet. It would make for a very neat setting I think. I would like to hear your thoughts. Some thoughts and Tidbits: People: Humans would survive, though most would like in small, isolated regions. Like the Blight Zone, but everywhere... Surviving Novas: Some would survive, mostly through dumb luck or extraordinary planning. Very few would survive anywhere near a nuke strike, though some might. Divis Mal: This guy could survive a nuke, though it would likely hurt him. That and coordinated strikes from other Novas might put him down. Of perhaps Mercer might get involved... Aeon: These folks would have to get involved. The Babel Dossier as well as hidden and protected fascilities would give them a unique responsibility here. China: China would likely be the top existing Earth government. Even in RL, China has massive underground fascilities in case of nuclear war. That and the huge space fleet that launched the nukes. Mutation: Sub-aberrant style mutants would outnumber Novas in the grim years to come. A New Flesh will present several options for mutant PCs. Radiation and Nukes: By the time of the ultimatum, I imagine all kinds of horrible weapons will have been developed, some designed specifically for Novas. This guy came up with the following damage for Nukes: Warhead 10KT (0.01MT), Effect 18[30], Expected damage 37.2 100KT (0.1MT), Effect 36[60], Expected damage 74.4 11000KT (1 MT), Effect 72[120], Expected damage 148.8 10,000KT (10MT), Effect 144[240], Expected damage 297.6 100,000KT (100MT), Effect 288[480], Expected damage 595.2
  25. Name: Julie ’Firework’ McCalister Age: 16 Gender: Female Description: 5’2 and athletically slender, Julie is a blonde-haired, green-eyed fireplug of a young woman, almost always in motion or doing something. Almost incapable of taking things seriously outside of a few topics since her mutation started making everything so easy for her, her sheer energy bubbles off of her with a grin and a laugh. She takes as little care for her appearance as she can get away with, keeping her hair no longer than the bottom of her ears for ease of care and dressing with the same practicality in mind. History: Julie McCalister was born and raised in the rural foothills of southern California, as much a child of the sun and open air as her parents, the owners of a successful cattle ranch. With three older brothers competing to inherit the family business, she felt free to bow out of the whole business and do what she wanted, aided by her doting Father and in a state of on-and-off warfare with her Mother tries to get her to apply herself to things she doesn‘t immediately love. She proved herself a gifted athlete leading out of middle school and into high school, particularly in the arena of track and field, albeit one who had to constantly force herself to put in the time needed to keep up her grades to stay competing in those events. The adrenaline-junkie’s bright disposition and success kept her surrounded by an ever-shifting cadre of like-minded friends and hangers on. That came to an end when her mutation made itself fully known at a particularly important track meet, most of her best teammates sick or injured, herself not feeling 100% but determined to run the event anyway. Julie made her best time yet, feeling so bluntly alive and in the moment as she came to a halt that it took her a few heartbeats to hear the shocked murmurs, to miss the customary cluster of happy teammates, to see the fact she was literally glowing, bright blue lines of illumination running up and down her body. The glow went out from surprise as the word ’Mutant’ was picked up by the crowd and repeated, whistles shrieking and her coaches coming up to escort her off the field with less than kind words. The weeks to follow were bad weeks. Kicked off the team as trophies were stripped away from her school. Rejected by the circles she was accustomed to moving among. Dreams of a future in sports smashed to ribbons. A through humiliation made only marginally better by a family suddenly unsure how to deal with her and the bittersweet joy of being able to do more with her new gifts than she could have ever done before. Then came a pamphlet in the mail and an invitation to a school for mutants… Maybe this could be something good. Stats              
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