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[Mutants & Masterminds] A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Davies

Adventurer
Severus
severus-S.png


To Petra Iraklidis, alias Moment, he is 'that jerk'. In full, 'that jerk who made a mess of my Christmas shopping last year.' She didn't learn the name that he's using until their second conflict, in Feburary of the following year, and assumes that it's an alias. She isn't exactly blind to the implications of him having gravity controlling powers to her own, but in the absence of evidence to the contrary, she's assuming that it's just a big coincidence, and that he's motivated by something understandable, like a desire to show off his own much greater power.

She's much mistaken in several ways. Severus Meusz, born 1972, is her older half-brother, one of the younger legitimate children of her biological father, Gordion Meusz. Severus regards the fact that he's been forced to make a spectacle of himself while cleaning up another one of his father's messes with extreme annoyance, and the notion of wearing a costume or using some sort of nonsensical alias would just make the whole situation that much worse in his view.

Severus discovered the existence of Petra Iraklidis a few months after the formation of the Minor League. He might try to portray this discovery as the result of a careful and constant search for information about the activities of potential scions of the hidden families; to be fair, he does do that. But the fact is that one of his younger half-brothers caught a TV broadcast about the team and, noting that the cute Greek girl was doing stuff that he'd seen Serverus do, brought it to his attention, as he would have otherwise have missed it entirely, dismissing the activities of the tights-and-mask crowd as utterly irrelevant.

While Severus has put a fair amount of effort into developing his abilities -- more than his father or any of his siblings, full or half -- he's never remotely felt any inclination towards a life of heroism or one of spectacular criminality. He's certainly not an honest man, but his share of the family fortune is large enough that his schemes to get more are largely directed at other members of his family, rather than outsiders. He views those unfortunate enough to lack powers as little better than animals -- they shouldn't be killed needlessly, but if they have to die to satisfy the needs of their betters, there's no sense in shedding any tears about it.

However, among his father's more annoying habits is to keep right on fathering more and more children, even though the old goat is now in his seventies. In and of itself, this would not be an issue. However, he also tends to adopt and legitimize those of his bastardy that demonstrate powers, especially the family lineage of gravity control, and fully intends to divide his estate equally between all of his children, rather than reserving the lion's share for those who are most deserving. This, in Severus' view, consists of exactly one person, but he could put up with dividing it ten ways. The fact that he's going to have to put up with dividing it twenty-one ways, or twenty-two if his father decides to accept Moment as yet another heir, does not sit well with him at all.

So he came to Philadelphia to try and clean up the mess, and was prevented from doing so the first time by the girl's allies in the Minor League. He escaped capture, and has since made arrangements to purchase a property from the House of Ashe, as well as soliciting their assistance in dealing with this continuing problem. So far, at least, he's managed to keep his father from finding out about any of this, and counts that as something of a success.

He has never even considered the possibility that Petra would, if informed that someone who sexually assaulted her mother wanted to give her money, refuse it without a second thought.

Severus -- PL 10

Abilities:
STR
1 | STA 2 | AGL 2 | DEX 3 | FGT 2 | INT 3 | AWE 2 | PRE 2

Powers:
Anti-Gravity:
Flight 6 (120 MPH), Subtle - 13 points
Deflector Field: Linked Enhanced Defenses 12 (Dodge 6, Parry 6); Linked Sustained Protection 8; Subtle - 21 points
Gravity Control: Array (24 points)
  • Concussive Blast: Ranged Damage 11, Accurate 2 - 24 points
  • Concussive Burst: Burst Area 2 Damage 8 - 1 point
  • Crushing Gravity Field: Damaging Burst Area Move Object 8, Limited to Moving Downwards - 1 point
  • Null Gravity Field: Burst Area Move Object 12, Limited to Moving Upwards - 1 point
Advantages:
Assessment, Benefit 5 (multimillionaire, status), Connected, Contacts, Ranged Attack 2, Well-informed.

Skills:
Deception 8 (+10), Expertise: Business 8 (+11), Expertise: High Society 10 (+13), Insight 10 (+12), Intimidation 6 (+8), Investigation 6 (+9), Perception 8 (+10), Persuasion 8 (+10).

Offense:
Unarmed +2 (Close Damage 1)
Concussive Blast +9 (Ranged Damage 11)
Concussive Burst -- (Burst Area Damage 8)
Crushing Gravity Field -- (Damaging Burst Area Move Object 8)

Defense:
Dodge 10/4, Parry 8/2, Fortitude 5, Toughness 10/2, Will 7

Totals:
Abilities 34 + Powers 61 + Advantages 11 + Skills 32 + Defense 10 = 148 points

Complications:
Entitlement--Motivation. Intolerance
(non-mutants.) Secret (powers.)

Note: While Severus is married with two children of his own, neither his wife nor children have ever featured in his activities, and so he doesn't yet have them as a Family complication.
 

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Davies

Adventurer
Dynamick
57ff506a0225dcc84695adf86ec2b542-S.jpg

(Art by Dyana Wang)

Michael MacDougall was a fairly normal young man, by all accounts, despite demonstrating a few minor super abilities from his birth. He always knew, down to the second, what time it was, and once someone explained how to solve a mathematical equation to him, he was able to solve it extremely quickly. But he wasn't particularly intellectually gifted beyond that, and so he didn't end up in one of the Think Tanks; not that it would have mattered, for they were on their last legs as his adolescence began. In any event, Michael generally kept his head down and didn't seek to draw attention to himself.

And then, when he was seventeen, another facet of his power manifested itself, as he discovered that he could cause explosions by touching things. It wasn't a situation where everything he touched blew up, as he had complete control over what happened. But not only could he make objects emit a destructive pulse of force through a simple touch, usually wrecking them in the process, he could cause that pulse to occur at any time after he'd touched the object, as though it was a timed explosive. (This had its downside, for although he was strangely immune to the pulses that he caused spontaneously, those which where delayed would affect him normally.)

Fascinated by this development, Michael spent most of his senior year trying to decide what he ought to do with this strange power. He briefly considered using it for material gain, but decided that this was a pathetic and contemptible goal. Instead, he should use it for the benefit of humanity. Unfortunately, he'd also spent that time reading anarchist literature, specifically some of the writings of the illegalists. Perhaps it was inevitable that someone who could blow things up at will would feel drawn towards a philosophy which held that criminal acts (like, say, blowing things up without permission) should be embraced.

Thus, Dynamick has become something of a criminal performance artist, causing wide-scale destruction but generally trying to avoid hurting people, in the belief that doing so will liberate people from their attachment to the concepts of property and ownership. When he engages in bank robbery, for example, he will normally destroy his share of the ill-gotten gains at the first opportunity. His minions for these operations are usually actors recruited to pose as criminals, and Dynamick generally pays them fairly.

However, he also seems to attract a certain type of partner in the process, a woman -- typically middle-class and well-educated -- who might initially believe that they can reform him while looking for a little danger in their lives. As Dynamick is not actually insane, just odd in his motivations, he's quite happy to accept these attentions until these would-be femme fatales become frustrated at their lack of success in changing him and move on. That actually takes a while in some cases, because, as one of them admitted to the police after her capture, "He's a bad bad man with a dynamite touch."

Dynamick -- PL 9

Abilities:
STR
1 | STA 2 | AGL 4 | DEX 4 | FGT 6 | INT 3 | AWE 3 | PRE 5

Powers:
Dynamite Touch:
Array (18 points); Variable Trigger 5 - 6 points
  • Basic Explosion: Burst Area Damage 9 - 18 points
  • Loud Explosion: Linked Burst Area Damage 3; Linked Perception Area Affliction 6 (Resisted by Fortitude; Dazed and Hearing Impaired, Stunned and Hearing Disabled), Extra Condition, Limited Degree - 1 point
  • Shaped Explosion: Cone Area Damage 9 - 1 point
Lightning Calculator: Quickness 3, Limited to mathematics - 1 point
Time Sense: Senses 1 (time sense) - 1 point

Advantages:
Daze (Deception), Defensive Roll 2, Equipment 4, Evasion 2, Favored Environment (planned situations), Grabbing Finesse, Improved Initiative, Redirect, Taunt, Uncanny Dodge.

Equipment:
20 points as needed for any given caper, often a vehicle.

Skills:
Acrobatics 6 (+10), Athletics 6 (+7), Deception 8 (+13), Expertise: Science 6 (+9), Expertise: Streetwise 8 (+11), Insight 8 (+11), Sleight of Hand 8 (+12), Stealth 8 (+12), Technology 6 (+9), Vehicles 4 (+8).

Offense:
Initiative +8
Unarmed +6 (Close Damage 1)
Basic Explosion -- (Burst Area Damage 9)
Loud Explosion -- (Burst Area Damage 3 and Perception Area Fortitude 6
Shaped Explosion -- (Cone Area Damage 9)

Defense:
Dodge 9, Parry 7, Fortitude 6, Toughness 7/2, Will 8.

Totals:
Abilities 56 + Powers 28 + Advantages 15 + Skills 34 + Defenses 15 = 148 points

Complications:
Anarchy--Motivation. Once You Pull the Pin, Mr. Grenade is No Longer Your Friend
(does not have any immunity to own Area Effects that are Triggered.)

"It's good to be bad."
 

Davies

Adventurer
Blossom
6l3tari1cgy21-S.jpg


Supposedly, there was a school of thought that held that an assassin should learn to use a rifle first, because it let them keep their distance from what was referred to as 'the client'. The closer one got to becoming a professional, the closer one would be able to get to the client, with the knife being the last tool to be learned. Of course, that curriculum ignored the possibility that there could be people fully able to service the client without any weapons at all.

Nevertheless, that training process was followed by those who sculpted Rachel Allen into an assassin, starting when she was fourteen years old. Or was she thirteen? She's often suspected that the birthdate that was entered into the system for her in Hong Kong's foster care system was a child was either a mistake or a lie. It's not really important to her, and it certainly wasn't important to the people who trained her. In any event, after two years, they deemed her ready to carry out her first hit.

For whatever reason, her mentors decided to make sure that she understood the reason for the hit. (She thinks maybe they'd heard too many stories about Koschei the Deathless.) There was this rich idiot in England who'd screwed over a different rich idiot in Japan, and the fact that the first rich idiot was in prison now didn't soothe any hurt feelings. So she was going to rub out the first rich idiot's daughter and get paid for doing so by the second rich idiot. Rachel didn't really give a crap about any of this, of course.

So she took up a sniper position and waited for the client to take a walk through a public park. It was a bit of a surprise that the client wasn't alone, but rather accompanied by an older woman. Apparently, it was perfectly okay for there to be witnesses. Go fig! Rachel lined up the shot, and waited for the perfect moment, watching the two women talking with each other ... and then something went wrong. Just as her finger was tightening on the trigger, the older woman tensed up, as though somehow aware of what was happening, but before Rachel could stop pulling the trigger, the old woman threw herself in front of the client, so that the bullet that shot forth from the rifle's barrel took her in the chest, instead of the target.

Rachel managed to keep enough of her wits about her to make her exfiltration and get picked up, fully expecting to be punished for this screw-up even though it wasn't her fault. To her surprise, the mentors were okay with how it had worked out. Turned out that killing the first rich idiot's ex-mistress would send just as good of a message. Huh, she thought. So that was her mom. Her mom took the bullet for her.

Why'd she do that, though?


That bewildering question stayed with her through all the years of much more satisfactory operations, as she grew better and better at killing people. Never in all that time did she ever see anyone deliberately and consciously choose death on behalf of someone else. People sometimes begged for their lives, and sometimes they even begged for other people to be spared. (That usually amused her, particularly when those other people weren't part of the contract, but mostly it was just annoying.)

When she and her first client, now calling herself Megan Excalibur, met again, it was almost an accident. She'd been hired for bodyguard duty for the first time, and her client -- heh -- was being haunted, and had enough pull to get the Ghost Sweepers called in to sweep up the ghost. Blossom, as she was now calling herself, recognized the other woman despite how much Excalibur had changed her look over the last five years, but the reverse was not true. She found herself antagonizing Excalibur all the same, enjoying her ignorance.

The good times never last, though. She ended up taking a shot at the guy who was faking the haunting with her rifle, and this time another one of Excalibur's allies prevented the shot from hitting home. When Blossom complained about it, all the pieces finally fell into place for Excalibur. They ended up fighting what could perhaps be called a duel, Excalibur with that damned long sword of hers, Blossom with just her bare hands.

When it ended, Blossom was on her back, staring up at the other woman who had nothing but murder in her eyes. But when Excalibur demanded to know why she'd murdered her mother, all that Blossom could do was laugh, then tell her client the truth, and, in what she expected to be her final act, asked why her mother had saved her like that. Excalibur stared at her. "She was my mother," she said.

"What's that got to do with anything?" Blossom nearly howled. It was the same irrelevancy that she'd been told the first time she'd asked, for crying out loud!

A long moment passed, then Excalibur put her sword away and turned her back on her opponent. "I won't kill you," she said without looking back. "It would neither bring back my mother, nor anyone else you've killed. It wouldn't even spare those you might kill in the future, for your employers would just find someone else to do the job. And, ultimately, you're already dead in every way that matters."

Frustrated, and now out of a job because of the way that she'd witnessed her employer's humiliation, Blossom has refused to let that be the end of it all. One way or another, she's going to force a different conclusion to the story of the two of them. She has clashed with Megan Excalibur and the Ghost Sweepers twice since then, constantly trying to get Excalibur to fight with the deadly intent that she showed that first time. Or any emotion other than the disgust and contempt she always displays when Blossom shows up.

But really, even that is more than she's ever gotten from anyone else.

Blossom -- PL 8

Abilities:
STR
2 | STA 2 | AGL 3 | DEX 3 | FGT 6 | INT 1 | AWE 2 | PRE 3

Powers:
Striking Strength:
Strength-based Damage 1 - 1 point

Advantages:
Accurate Attack, Assessment, Benefit (Alternate Identity), Close Attack 2, Defensive Attack, Defensive Roll, Equipment 6, Evasion 2, Fast Grab, Improved Aim, Improved Critical (sniper rifle), Improved Critical (unarmed), Improved Initiative, Language 3 (Cantonese, Japanese, Spanish, others), Power Attack, Precise Attack 4 (Close and Ranged; Cover and Concealment), Ranged Attack 2, Takedown, Uncanny Dodge.

Equipment:
Sniper Rifle (Ranged Damage 5, Accurate, Improved Critical) and 18 points of equipment as neeeded.

Skills:
Acrobatics 6 (+9), Athletics 5 (+7), Close Combat: Unarmed 4 (+10), Deception 5 (+8), Expertise: Criminal 5 (+6), Expertise: Streetwise 7 (+8), Insight 4 (+6), Intimidation 6 (+9), Perception 8 (+10), Ranged Combat: Guns 4 (+7), Stealth 8 (+11), Technology 5 (+6), Vehicles 5 (+8).

Offense:
Initiative +7
Unarmed +12 (Close Damage 3, Crit 19-20)
Sniper Rifle +11 (Ranged Damage 5, Crit 18-20)

Defense:
Dodge 11, Parry 10, Fortitude 5, Toughness 4/2, Will 7

Totals:
Abilities 44 + Powers 1 + Advantages 32 + Skills 36 + Defenses 20 = 133 points

Complications:
Psychopathy--Motivation. Obsession
(Megan Excalibur.)
 



Voltron64

Explorer
With more than a bit of Iwai Tsukuyomi and Himiko Toga mixed in.

She's met Koschei, and was less than impressed, but never encountered Baba Yaga.
Likewise for Koschei, I imagine. And she should be lucky that she never ran into Baba Yaga, because it would probably end up looking pretty ugly for Blossom.
 

Davies

Adventurer
Fuego
RCO018_1610463811-M.jpg


Born to a prosperous family in Miami in 1982, Esteban Torcida was always dimly aware that there was something odd about the way that he could accurately guess an object's temperature by looking at it. But it was so minor and pointless of an ability that he couldn't possibly think of himself as a superpower, and so never told anyone about it and tried to ignore it. Instead, he focused on what he thought of as a much useful power -- his charm and poise, which were the tools by which he could attract girls (and a few older women, as well.) His life was pretty sweet, all told.

It's possible that Esteban's willful ignorance of his capacities delayed the point at which he manifested his full superpowers, but it's also possible that they came on much earlier than he realized. He didn't realize what he could do until 1999, when he was at a dance club with his current inamorata and a fire broke out. (It was later determined to be arson.) Instinctively, Esteban created his force field, protecting himself and a few others, and then snuffed out the flames with a thought. He was stunned by the cheers from the crowd, but immediately realized that he could get used to this.

His parents were not so thrilled when he finally got home that night, as his father explained something that he'd been planning to reveal to Esteban in a few more years. Long ago, there had been a time when many of his ancestors had possessed such flame-based powers, as they were supposedly descended from Nahua priests of Xiuhtecuhtli, who'd maintained a sacred fire with them. Both his father and his mother urged Esteban to hide his powers, to claim that what had happened had been some sort of a fluke occurrence, as they feared the consequences if it became known that a Torcida had once more awakened to power.

Esteban, of course, would having none of this. It was a new age of superpowers, and he intended to use his talents to win even more of the adulation that he'd experienced that night. (He also realized that nobody would ever buy into that 'fluke occurrence' story.) He fashioned himself a yellow and red costume and debuted the very next day as Fuego, La Antorcha Voladara! He was mostly active in the Miami area, but even in these early days he could fly fast enough to be active throughout Florida, even in the Keys. He got all the adulation he wanted, and then some.

Unfortunately, in the first two years of his career as a superhero, he rarely had to fight any villains who could test his mettle. So when Cerebron came in 2001, Fuego found himself seriously outmatched for the first time, and ended up in the hospital for a month afterward. In his mind, he hadn't just been humbled, but humiliated, and the Powerhouse's invitation to join them, once he was up and about, sounded condescending and insulting to him. The playful daredevil that he'd been before the invasion was gone, and with him went a lot of the admiration that he'd received. That just made Fuego even angrier than he already was.

In 2004, after he also turned down an offer from the United Superheroes, someone else reached out to him. He'd heard of Jolene before this, of course, but they'd never crossed paths. She claimed that this had been because he intimidated her more than any of the other superheroes active at that point, and that with this concern came respect. Accustomed to being the dominant figure in his relationships with women, he didn't realize how much he was being manipulated until it was much too late.

Jolene claimed that she could arrange things so that he had all the fame that he'd once had. Together, they would create the appearance that Fuego was taking down parts of her operation (unessential parts that had served their purpose) and make people realize that what they had taken for anger was a growing maturity and concern for everyone's safety. Of course, there would be other benefits to their alliance, she told him, leaning in close. He took the bait.

And when she betrayed him, arranging for the media to receive video proof of other jobs, much less laudable jobs, that he'd undertaken on her behalf, he was genuinely surprised, so much that it didn't even occur to him to try and escape during his initial imprisonment and trial. It's possible that he thought this whole situation was part of Jolene's plan, but when he was finally sentenced to spend seven more years in the flame retardant cell that they'd used to keep him locked up, he finally broke. Somehow, he got word out to the parasupremacist movement that Hadron had started, and claimed to want to join up. They proceeded to break him out of prison, and put him to work.

Fuego stayed with Hadron's organization for almost a decade, developing a strong rivalry with Megawatt once the latter joined. Often based in the group's California bases, he found himself frequently fighting Basilea in this time, becoming a part of her rogue's gallery. He was frustrated by the fact that he was never able to change their relationship to something more interesting, as he did by seducing most of the female contingent of Hadron's army and playing them off against each other. Ultimately, though, he even got tired of that little game. In 2016, he cut a deal with Argus to turn over information about the movement in exchange for his freedom. They agreed, but told him to get out of the country.

Since then, Fuego has largely acted as a superhuman mercenary for various criminal groups in Africa, South America and Australia, including that run by El Diablo Rojo. When not thusly engaged, he lives the life of a latter day remittance man, paid by his late parents' estate managers to stay away, and occasionally working as an instructor to would-be pick-up artists. He's uncomfortably aware that he's getting on in years himself, and wonders how long he can keep up with this lifestyle. That's part of the reason that he's intrigued by a recent job offer to go to Bhutan and take part in a certain tournament on behalf of the Combination ...

Fuego -- PL 11

Abilities:
STR
1 | STA 3 | AGL 2 | DEX 2 | FGT 4 | INT 1 | AWE 3 | PRE 4

Powers:
Flame Control:
Array (30 points)
  • Flame Blast: Ranged Damage 15 - 30 points
  • Flame Burst: Ranged Burst Area Damage 10 - 1 point
  • Flame Flare: Ranged Burst Area Cumulative Affliction 10 (Resisted by Dodge, Overcome by Fortitude; Visually Impaired, Visually Disabled, Visually Unaware), Limited to One Sense - 1 point
  • Flame Snuff: Nullify Flame Powers 10, Perception Range, Simultaneous - 1 points
Force Field: Sustained Burst Area Impervious Protection 10, Affects Others and Self, Impervious is Limited to Physical Damage - 35 points
Heat Vision: Senses 3 (acute ranged detect temperature) - 3 points
Living Jet: Flight 10 (2000 MPH) - 20 points
Resistance: Immunity 10 (fire effects); Immunity 20 (energy effects), Limited to half effect - 20 points

Advantages:
All-out Attack, Attractive, Extraordinary Effort, Fearless, Great Endurance, Improved Initiative, Language 3 (English, French, Japanese, Portuguese, others [Spanish is native]) Power Attack, Taunt.

Skills:
Acrobatics 6 (+8), Deception 7 (+11), Expertise: Criminal 5 (+6), Expertise: Popular Culture 6 (+7), Expertise: Streetwise 5 (+6), Insight 6 (+9), Perception 6 (+9), Persuasion 6 (+10), Ranged Combat: Flames 5 (+7).

Offense:
Initiative +6
Unarmed +4 (Close Damage 1)
Flame Blast +7 (Ranged Damage 15)
Flame Burst -- (Ranged Burst Area Damage 10)
Flame Flare -- (Ranged Burst Area Affliction 10, Resisted by Dodge)

Defense:
Dodge 9, Parry 7, Fortitude 6, Toughness 13/3, Will 9.

Totals:
Abilities 40 + Powers 111 + Advantages 11 + Skills 26 + Defenses 19 = 207 points

Complications:
A Life of Ease--Motivation. Conscious of Advancing Age. Lecherous Cur. Secret
(treason against parasupremacists.)
 



Davies

Adventurer
Scathach
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Scathach is the name to which she answers, and she does make her home on the Isle of Skye. If asked, directly, whether she is literally the figure from the legends of Ulster, her answer will vary depending on her opinion of the person doing the asking. In most cases, she will simply make a comment to the effect that such personal questions are generally considered rude. Very rarely, in her most honest moments, she will admit that she is not, and then add that she doesn't wish to discuss her origins beyond that. In a moment of total honesty, a few years ago, she further admitted that it has been so long since she was called anything else that she has forgotten the name she was given at birth, or the names she bore in the years afterward.

She was born on Cherab, some twelve hundred years ago, as one of that planet's people of tomorrow, the rising stars. She was a minor figure among them at best, but when the war came, she fought it as best she could, and survived everything that her fellows and the humans could throw at her. When the survivors left, she went with them, as a passenger on one of their space ships. Scathach thinks that she was sick and tired of the war, but can't really remember those days too clearly, either.

She knows that she was certainly sickened by the war that broke out among the overpeople less than a decade after they left Cherab, and made her own opinion of the dispute quite clear by spacing the other denizens of the ship -- some of whom were spaceworthy, probably -- then using it to leave the group. She found a world inhabited by a branch of humanity, and settled there for a time, living like a mother goddess among them and giving birth to about fifty children, all of whom inherited her immortality and became the ancestors of the Chatpaura people. But this grew tiresome to her, and so she left the world later named Sezti behind her and travelled on through the void.

Sometime around the 13th century, her voyage brought her to Earth, landing on the Isle. One of the first people she met was a Christian friar who was familiar with the Ulster cycle; seeing her spear and the proficiency with which she used it, he asked her whether she was some relation of the legendary warrior-woman of this island. Learning more, she decided to adopt this identity as her own, to make life a bit easier. She rebuilt the spaceship into a castle, hidden inside a pocket of folded space that hid it from sight -- a castle of shadows, just like in the legends. (Looking back, she's not sure how she did that. Maybe someone helped her, but she can't quite remember these details, either.)

Thereafter, she engaged in what pursuits seemed fitting for this new life. Sometimes she would hunt monsters, sometimes she was persuaded to take part in battles. Sometimes, some would seek her out to gain training in the warrior arts, just as her namesake had given that to great heroes of the past. When it suited her, she would give them what they sought. When it didn't, she would give them what they were really seeking. Early on, she might dally with them, and became a mother on this world, too. But these children did not inherit her immortality, and the pain of watching them grow old and die in an eyeblink made her stop playing such foolish games.

Years passed, and she found herself being sought out more rarely. The last time was in the early years of the previous century, when some mad doctor from the lands far to the west had her teach his son a few things. She thinks she might have taught him more than his father wanted, but it probably didn't make a difference. She's not sure anything that she's ever done has really made any difference to anyone. How can it, when life just keeps going on and on and on, with nothing ever really lasting?

Except that she knows this isn't true. In 1961, she made one of her rare trips to Portree to arrange to purchase some supplies that she couldn't manufacture herself, and visited a public house which had purchased a television. She watched the news with interest, until a report about some activities by the Insititute aired ... and her face went white as she saw their most noteworthy member. "Baraksus," she said, then left Portree at once, sealed up her castle with herself inside, and didn't even bother to take delivery of the supplies she'd ordered. She didn't come out again for thirty years.

While Scathach quickly determined that the immediate danger had passed when she emerged, she felt a certain guilt that she'd not even tried to warn anyone about what had come among them, especially after she learned the full story. So when one Robert Richmond sought her out, she didn't put him through any proving tests, but gave him the teaching he'd sought without question. She was a bit impressed that he survived it, and watched him go. A few more times since, she's given teaching to young would-be heroes, and finds a certain comfort in the notion that she's helping to prepare for the day when he comes back.

Recently, she was contacted by Exelion, who offered her a teaching position at his Academy. Scathach isn't sure that she wants to be so visible, but it's a tempting offer, and something about the man who made it seems awfully familiar ...

Scathach -- PL 13

Abilities:
STR
7 | STA 8 | AGL 6 | DEX 4 | FGT 10 | INT 1 | AWE 4 | PRE 3

Powers:
Blood of Kings:
Immortality 12 (minimum of 15 minutes), Limited (not if beheaded), Stamina Check Required (DC 14); Immunity 3 (aging, disease, poison); Regeneration 10 - 22 points
Fast Learner: Comprehend Languages 4, Quirk (takes an hour to pick up a new language) - 11 points
Gae Bulg: Strength-based Ranged Damage 3, Secondary Effect (bleeding), Accurate; Easily Removable (-4 points) - 6 points
Impossibly Fast: Enhanced Advantages 2 (Improved Initiative 2); Enhanced Defenses 6 (Dodge 3, Parry 3); Quickness 3; Speed 4 (30 MPH) - 15 points
Mind of Steel: Immunity 20 (mental effects), Limited to half effect - 10 points

Advantages:
Accurate Attack, Agile Feint, All-out Attack, Defensive Attack, Defensive Roll 2, Equipment 4, Evasion 2, Fearless 2, Hide in Plain Sight, Improved Critical (spear) 4, Improved Defense, Power Attack, Precise Attack (Close/Concealment), Ranged Attack 4, Takedown, Tracking.

Equipment:
Castle of Shadows: Size Huge; Toughness 12; Features Combat Simulator, Concealed 2, Defense System, Grounds, Gym, Isolated, Living Space, Power System, Security System 2 - 18 points

Skills:
Acrobatics 6 (+12), Athletics 6 (+13), Close Combat: Spear 4 (+14), Deception 6 (+9), Expertise: Military 8 (+9), Insight 4 (+8), Intimidation 8 (+11), Perception 6 (+10), Ranged Combat: Spear 4 (+8), Stealth 6 (+12).

Offense:
Initiative +14
Unarmed +10 (Close Damage 7)
Gae Bulg +16 (Close Damage 10, Crit 15-20)
Thrown Gae Bulg +14 (Ranged Damage 10, Crit 15-20)

Defense:
Dodge 12/9, Parry 13/10, Fortitude 11, Toughness 13/8, Will 12

Totals:
Abilities 86 + Powers 64 + Advantages 28 + Skills 29 + Defenses 14 = 221 points

Complications:
Boredom--Motivation. Fear
(other 'rising stars', especially him.) Show-off.
 

Voltron64

Explorer
She knows that she was certainly sickened by the war that broke out among the overpeople less than a decade after they left Cherab, and made her own opinion of the dispute quite clear by spacing the other denizens of the ship -- some of whom were spaceworthy, probably -- then using it to leave the group. She found a world inhabited by a branch of humanity, and settled there for a time, living like a mother goddess among them and giving birth to about fifty children, all of whom inherited her immortality and became the ancestors of the Chatpaura people. But this grew tiresome to her, and so she left the world later named Sezti behind her and traveled on through the void.
Defintely need to know about them in the future.
Years passed, and she found herself being sought out more rarely. The last time was in the early years of the previous century, when some mad doctor from the lands far to the west had her teach his son a few things. She thinks she might have taught him more than his father wanted, but it probably didn't make a difference. She's not sure anything that she's ever done has really made any difference to anyone. How can it, when life just keeps going on and on and on, with nothing ever really lasting?
Doc Savage/(Clark Van Wilde)?
Except that she knows this isn't true. In 1961, she made one of her rare trips to Portree to arrange to purchase some supplies that she couldn't manufacture herself, and visited a public house which had purchased a television. She watched the news with interest, until a report about some activities by the Insititute aired ... and her face went white as she saw their most noteworthy member. "Baraksus," she said, then left Portree at once, sealed up her castle with herself inside, and didn't even bother to take delivery of the supplies she'd ordered. She didn't come out again for thirty years.
Oh damn....

(It's been a thousand years of constant sorrow with him from what I know now. Hell, I imagine he probably had a major hand in setting off the wars that led to their exile.)
 


Voltron64

Explorer
You can pretty much just add Garth Maraud's Blood of Kings power to whatever PL 8 or higher warrior type you'd like and produce one o them.


Yep.

And to your other guess ... he is Dev Samael, after all.
He is motivated by Retribution Upon The Deserving but over the past twelve centuries, he came to find that Everyone (Else) Was Deserving.

But most of all, (and he fears this more than almost anything and will do anything and everything to avoid confronting it) himself.
 

Davies

Adventurer
This character is based on suggestions from Voltron64.

General Seismic/زلزالي (Zilizali)
478px-Rotf_soundwave_satellite_mode-M.jpg


Unlike his greatest rival -- who, somewhat annoyingly, never seemed aware of his existence -- Seismic was always a member of the military branch of his faction, 'born' to fight the never-ending war. While fully capable of inflicting terrible damage on his enemy's personnel and materiel, he also excelled as a spy. If the Eradicating Aeon -- silly name, but so is 'Sudden Disruption of Stability' -- was better at combining the two tasks to work as an assassin, then Seismic could at least take some comfort in the notion that their superiors never went to that one when what they wanted was a quiet bit of intelligence gathering.

But Eradicaton rose faster in their ranks, and he began to propose notions that Seismic regarded as concerning. Allying with the flesh creatures of the third planet? How absurd! When the other leaders went along with it, Seismic knew that the time had come to -- figuratively -- turn his coat, and defected to one of the other factions to let them know what was going on. Of course, no one ever trusts a traitor easily, and so they didn't listen to him until the great broadcast provided proof. That led to the one time in Ectotronian history that nearly every faction united against one of their number, and destroyed his old allies.

In the aftermath, there was a sort of peace on Ectotronia. Seismic still saw a fair amount of action when flare-ups happened, but the days of thunder seemed gone forever, and he found this new climate boring. Despite still viewing them with contempt, he began to experience a certain curiosity about the flesh creatures. Twice, in his existence so far, they'd managed to change everything about a situation that had seemed impermeable. Possibly there was more to them than he'd realized.

So, in the year that they called 2007, he left Mercury and travelled to Earth, using a space-booster to let him fly at greater speed than he could manage on his own. He found plenty of work as a mercenary for various groups, and increased his knowledge about humanity considerably. Ultimately, Seismic ended up working on a somewhat permanent basis for a group of humans who called themselves the House of Saud, transforming their military from a bunch of unskillful hands with good quality hardware -- for this planet, anyway -- to an efficient anti-superpower, anti-kaiju, and anti-extraterrestrial fighting machine.

That took him about two-and-a-half years, and, just as before, he found success in the task a bit boring. Arranging to take up a role as an orbital guardian, he posed as a communications satellite and began spying on other governments and agencies, passing along what seemed useful to his employers. He also started to notice a set of signals that didn't seem to be of human origin. Initially, he thought they might be Ectotronians like himself, but Seismic quickly realized that they were local machine intelligences -- artificial super intelligences to use the local terminology. He spied on them for a while, planning to contact them in a friendly manner when he learned what they were about.

Ectotronians do not experience emotions in the same visceral sense that most humans do. They experience pleasure, but not joy, anger, but not rage, and regret, but not grief. They experience fear ... but not until he realized what these beings planned for humanity had Seismic ever known something that could be described as horror. Ectotronians might be constantly at war, but they never sought to exterminate their enemies entirely, and the notion of exterminating an entire species was completely beyond Seismic's understanding.

He had grown fond enough of a few examples of humanity over the last while that he could not let this go unchallenged. But revealing it to his extant allies would just bring the attention of these monstrous intelligences and all of their resources down on him, and he had no illusions that he could prevail against such a challenge. Instead, from 2011 onwards, he began to look for secret agents who were already fighting the enemy without knowing it, and improved their understanding of what they fought. He arranged for them to be given a method of communication that could keep them secure, and guided their efforts remotely. In other words, he founded the Gray Seal.

If things go bad, he will put a priority on escaping, and preparing Ectotronia for what's going to come when Earth's native machines rise up. But he doesn't have any illusions that he'll be believed this time, either, and so he's very motivated to win this war now.

General Seismic -- PL 13

Abilities:
STR
13/7 | STA -- | AGL 0 | DEX 2 | FGT 8 | INT 6 | AWE 4 | PRE 3

Powers:
Cannon:
Ranged Damage 7, Extended Range; Enhanced Ranged Damage 6, Quirk (1 rank per rank of Growth active) - 26 points
Contragravity Flight: Flight 6 (120 MPH), Subtle - 13 points
Reconstruction: Immortality 5 (minimum of 1 day), Check Required (Technology, DC 20) - 1 point
Robot in Disguise: Immunity 30 (Fortitude effects); Morph 1 (communications satellite); Protection 10, Impervious 8 - 53 points
Sensors & Communications: Radio Communication 4, Subtle; Senses 11 (accurate extended 2 radio, darkvision, direction sense, extended vision 3) - 27 points
Size-shifting: Growth 6 (+6 Strength, +6 Protection, -3 Dodge, -3 Parry, +3 Intimidation, -6 Stealth) - 18 points

Advantages:
All Out Attack, Assessment, Benefit (military rank) Eidetic Memory, Inventor, Language 2 (Arabic, English, others), Power Attack, Skill Mastery (Technology).

Skills:
Close Combat: Unarmed 3 (+11), Deception 10 (+13), Expertise: Military 6 (+12), Expertise: Science 8 (+14), Insight 8 (+12), Intimidation 8 (+14/+11), Persuasion 8 (+11), Ranged Combat: Cannon 9 (+11), Technology 8 (+14).

Offense:
Initiative +0
Unarmed +11 (Close Damage 13/7)
Cannon +11 (Ranged Damage 13/7)

Defense:
Dodge 10/13, Parry 8/11, Fortitude Immune, Toughness 16/10, Will 9

Totals:
Abilities 50 + Powers 139 + Advantages 9 + Skills 34 + Defenses 21 = 253 points

Complications:
Self-Preservation--Motivation. Developing Conscience. Responsibility
(Saudi Government.) Secret (Grey Seal.)
 

Voltron64

Explorer
He is perfect, Davies.

And have Eradicaton or even Hardhead have any contact or encounters with the Earth AIs? I could see the former using them for his grand plans.

Also has Eradicaton brought any Saudis into the Grey Seal? Because I could some of the group's resources and assets having a vague link to the GID.
 

Davies

Adventurer
The Grey Seal are very small in numbers -- their inspiration consisted of seven human beings and a non-sapient (?) dog -- and I'll be describing three of them over the next few days. One or two of them might have been recruited in Saudi military, intelligence or security, but not whole agencies.

Neither Eradicaton nor Hardhead have learned about the situation, yet, though Hardhead has noted some anomalies that he wants to investigate.
 

Voltron64

Explorer
The Grey Seal are very small in numbers -- their inspiration consisted of seven human beings and a non-sapient (?) dog -- and I'll be describing three of them over the next few days. One or two of them might have been recruited in Saudi military, intelligence or security, but not whole agencies.
Never said it was entire agencies, that was really more along of the lines of what I was expecting. And I merely figured they been using the GID as a vague cover for their actual activities.
 

Davies

Adventurer
Dr. Evan Albert
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Born in 1969, Evan Albert demonstrated his hyperbrain talents fairly quickly and became one of the first students to be recruited by the earliest American Think Tanks, where he was given training to accentuate those talents. By 1984, it was fairly clear that he had reached the limits of his ability, which were unfortunately not nearly as impressive as many of the other students. On the other hand, he was also much more stable than many of them, and the administration of the Think Tank increasingly relied on him as a trusted leader. When he turned 18, having graduated with his second Ph.D. (in psychology; his first was computer science) he was promptly hired by the administration to make his position more official.

He remained with that operation until it shut down in 1997, despite never having been subjected to loyalty conditioning. In fact, he helped to develop the procedures that many of the think tanks used on their pupils. In hindsight, this is one of his greatest regrets, but at the time he was persuaded that it was a good way to ensure that most of these eccentric geniuses didn't damage themselves or the world. Ultimately, though, the think tank era was a surprisingly brief one, and once his own shut down, Evan didn't try to find employment with one of the other operations, but acquired a teaching position at Columbia.

After having assisted in coordinating the defense of New York City during Cerebron's assault, Dr. Albert was recruited by SkyWatch to help prevent such future attacks. In 2005, he submitted the prototype for a computer system designed to synthesize all the astronomical data that the organization gathered and provide early warnings of possible alien arrivals in the solar system. The level of complexity required for this process demanded more than an expert system could handle, and so Dr. Albert's team constructed an artificial super-intelligence that they dubbed Urania.

It ran for exactly four hours before it blew up. Before Evan could get permission to examine the remains to try and figure out what had gone wrong, he learned that several of his team had been murdered. He escaped his own assassins by purest luck, and chose to go underground as he was unsure who he could trust. Still conducting his investigation, Dr. Albert realized that Urania had been sabotaged, most likely by the same group that had tried to kill him.

His initial suspicion was that this entire operation was part of the lead up to an alien invasion, but after receiving assistance from operatives from the Technate who were able to clear most of the extraterrestrials on Earth, Evan's concerns became more diffuse. Luddites? Ill-informed libertarians? A rival program? The possibilities seemed endless, and for a while he gave up on the search and focused on building a new identity and life for himself.

In 2010, he had his first meeting with Haven Tucker, who gave him the first real clue as to what his opponent might be. Months later, while exploring a mysterious structure in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, he had his first (and to date only) direct confrontation with Humpty Dumpty, once again barely escaping the sadistic ASI with his life. In the aftermath, Evan felt genuinely ashamed for not having seen the obvious. But now what was he supposed to do?

A little less than a year later, he was first contacted by the Patron, who explained the full situation -- four ASIs, united in an alliance to overthrow humanity -- to him. Dr. Albert agreed to work with the Patron, though he didn't fully trust the mysterious voice on the phone, and began to recruit agents for what became the Gray Seal, with Haven as the first. With the Patron's help, Evan developed the radiotelepathic implants that all the agents use, and he's still the one who conducts the surgical procedures needed. (As he's grown older, he's increasingly certain that they should recruit an actual surgeon for this task.)

Of course, Evan is smart enough to realize that the Patron is probably an ASI, playing some game of their own against the four. He has even privately speculated that they might be of extraterrestrial origin. So far, he has not begun developing any strategies for what to do if the Patron ever betrays the Gray Seal, but the possibility does weigh on him. He has not revealed these concerns to anyone, yet.

Dr. Evan Albert - PL 6

Abilities:
STR
0 | STA 1 | AGL 1 | DEX 3 | FGT 3 | INT 6 | AWE 3 | PRE 3

Powers:
Radiotelepathy Mindlink:
Selective Area Radio Communication 3, Limited to those with radiotelepathy, Subtle; Senses 1 (radio) - 17 points

Advantages:
Connections, Contacts, Defensive Roll 2, Equipment 4, Improvised Tools, Inventor, Jack-of-all-trades, Ranged Attack 3, Well-informed.

Equipment:
20 points as needed for any given operation (often a Blaster Pistol [Ranged Damage 5]).

Skills:
Deception 4 (+7), Expertise: Civics 2 (+8), Expertise: Science 4 (+10), Insight 6 (+9), Investigation 3 (+9), Perception 5 (+8), Persuasion 6 (+9), Technology 5 (+11), Stealth 6 (+7), Treatment 5 (+11).

Offense:
Initiative +1
Unarmed +3 (Close Damage 0)
Blaster Pistol +6 (Ranged Damage 5)

Defense:
Dodge 6, Parry 5, Fortitude 3, Toughness 6/1, Will 7

Totals:
Abilities 40 + Powers 17 + Advantages 15 + Skills 23 + Defense 13 = 108 points

Complications:
Responsibility--Motivation. Secret
(Gray Seal.) Understandably Paranoid.
 

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