World of Freedom 2.5 (DVD Commentary)

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World of Freedom 2.5 (DVD Commentary)

Post by Davies » Wed Jul 05, 2006 1:30 pm

Index:

State of the Art:
Atom Family
Next Gen
SHADOW
:arrow: Revision and expansion of the above, to work better with Agents of Freedom
Arsenal of Democracy
Crime League
Assorted Villains
Independent Heroes
The NEW Next Gen

Current Events:
The Vampire Earth, Part One
The Vampire Earth, Part Two
The Vampire Earth, Part Three
Time of Vengeance, Part One
Time of Vengeance, Part Two
Time of Vengeance, Part Three
Time of Vengeance, Part Four
Graduation Day, Part One
Graduation Day, Part Two
Graduation Day, Part Three
Graduation Day, Part Four
Graduation Day, Part Five

Whatever Happened To:
Midnight, Part One
Midnight, Part Two
Midnight, Part Three
Lady Liberty, Part One
Lady Liberty, Part Two
Lady Liberty, Part Three
Dr. Destroyer

Now It Can Be Told:
Trouble's Secret Origin
Blitz and Madame Blitz's Familial Connection
Magpie's Secret Origin?


New Characters and Organizations:
The Champions
Protonik
Caias Ward
Ultimaid
Quarrel
The Extremist
The Atomic Brain
GENOCIDE
Eurostar
Tanya Prophet
Scarab III
Beacon II
Hazard
Aegeus
Miss Murder
Claudia Chase
Dr. Kevin Hudson, the Furious Freak
Crusader
Dr. XX
Firewing
Trouble
The Perfect Storm
Xena Latham
Overpower
Jane Dark
Foxbat II
Neutronik
The Clan McNichol
Toxic
Captain Photon
Dread Space Pirate Bailesu
Dr. Ashley Ellis
:arrow: Alternate Version of the above
The Old Man
The Commander
Los Asesinos
Synthesis
Ebony Sin
Beatrice Smart
Scope Casanova
Doctor Li
An Inquiring Mind
Freedom League Taskforce
Scarab II
The Lesser of Two Evils: Purifier and Firedrake
Local Heroes
Miss Eyre
The Seven Shadows (defunct)
True Believer
Death Waif
Shanna Barker
Christine Murphy
The TV Doctor
Jill Asia, Princess of Hell
Supers of the World: Detroit
Tommy Martin
Lenore
Titaness
Ayanami

Campaign Outlines:
Seven in the Shadows
Project Freedom (aka The Ex-Cons)
Freedom Knights

A Look Behind the Curtain:
The Economy of Super-Tech
Utopia ...?
Canadian Supers
Crosstime Empires
Earth-552: The Silver Age Triumphant?
Super-Soldiers/Seal Team Eight
Paragons in the World of Freedom: Basic Assumptions
Paragons in the World of Freedom: Factions & Characters
Monitor Duty

The Freedom League:
Bowman
Captain Thunder
Daedelus
Dr. Metropolis
Johnny Rocket
Lady Liberty
Pseudo
Raven
Siren
Star Knight

The Sentinels:
Sebastian Arcane
Blackheart
Hardcore
Iron Angel
Onyx
Speed Demon
Technomancer
Troll

Future Freedom
Tyrannus' Secret Revealed
Elly
Where Are They Then: The Factor Four, The Freebooter, and the Forces of the Terminus

World of Freedom 2525:
Dr. Metropolis of 2525
The Dragon
Overshadow II
Centurion II

Freedom's Reach
The White Lady
The Freedom Guard (Part One)
The Freedom Guard (part Two)
Charlie Graniteskin, created by ClassDunce
Stats for the Above, likewise
Lord Raymond Creyson, created by StickMan

The Gathering:
Secrets of the Gathering
Prelude to the Gathering
The Gathering, Part One
Concrete Angel vs. Amazon
Kris vs. Green Dragon
Interlude #1
Orion vs. Overpower
Phalanx vs. Superior
Interlude #2
Crimson Katana vs. Damocles
Ebony Sin vs. The Red Hood (Raven)
Interlude #3
Lady of the Lantern vs. Ms. Scarlet
Heartbreaker vs. Mean Machine
Interlude #4
Concrete Angel vs. Green Dragon
Overpower vs. Phalanx (Hardcore)
Crimson Katana vs. Red Hood (Raven)
Ms. Scarlet vs. Heartbreaker
Interlude #5
Concrete Angel vs. Overpower
Interlude #6
Crimson Katana vs. Ms. Scarlet
Interlude #7
Concrete Angel vs. Crimson Katana
Interlude #8
Concrete Angel vs. Firewing, Part One
Concrete Angel vs. Firewing, Part Two
Finale
Epilogues

Freedom City: Loves and Other Madnesses

Olympus Delendam Est!
Prologue
Chapter One, Scene One
Chapter One, Interlude One
Chapter One, Scene Two
Chapter One, Interlude Two
Chapter One, Scene Three
Chapter One, Interlude Three
Chapter Two, Prelude
Chapter Two, Scene One
Chapter Two, Scene Two
Chapter Two, Scene Three
Chapter Two, Interlude One
Chapter Two, Interlude Two
Chapter Three, Prelude
Chapter Three, Scene One
Chapter Three, Scene Two
Chapter Three, Scene Three
Chapter Three, Interlude One
Chapter Three, Scene Four
Chapter Three, Scnee Five
Chapter Three, Interlude Two
Chapter Three, Interlude Three
To Be Continued ...

Project Freedom B Team

Quick Basics:

* Freedom City is in Massachusetts, and everyone who's listed in FC2e as being there is still there. (However, there've been some changes over the last year ...)

* The current iteration of the Sentinels are based in New York, like all previous versions have been. They have a "friendly rivalry" with the Freedom League.

* The Aerie is also based in New York. They don't have a friendly relationship with anyone.

* AEGIS' own super-agents, the Arsenal of Democracy, are lead by Patriot (not Anthem) and include many of the members described in the Algernon Files, plus a thrillseeking female Ultiman. (How this came to pass will be revealed shortly.)

* The Champions are based in Bay City (San Francisco after rebuilding from a much more devastating Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989.) They don't interact much with the other two "big" teams.

* While the European Community still doesn't have an "official" super-team, Eurostar, lead by Protektanto (secretly disgraced Danish politician Nikolas Danner) has established good working relationships with most European governments. (Yes, this is a heroic -- well, Iron Age heroic -- version of Eurostar from Champions. No, they don't get on well with most American heroes. Fiacho's signature quote from Classic Enemies still applies.)

* A few characters from "Meta-4" are also around the edges, but as I don't have "Crooks", I'm basically making things up as I go along with regards to them ...

* When I get my hands on Champions of the North, I may incorporate them into this as the heroes of Canada. (Who will be several PL higher than everyone else, but far far too humble to make a big deal out of it.) Ditto for Kingdom of Champions, to represent the current heroic protectors of the United Kingdom.

* More of what I call the Big Picture can be found here.

* These threads, by other authors, are more-or-less canonical for "my" WoF.
Odds and Ends for the Freedomverse by Rhialto
A Golden Age "Captain Marvel" for Freedom City by shazam
The Name with the Claim to Fame by shazam
Kreuz control: SAS (and more) to Freedom City by Kreuzritter
Last edited by Davies on Thu Jun 03, 2010 7:26 pm, edited 59 times in total.

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Post by Aaron Sullivan » Wed Jul 05, 2006 1:52 pm

Mondo coolness. Always glad to see people getting usage out of the books. 8)
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Post by Steve Kenson » Wed Jul 05, 2006 1:58 pm

Very nice. I suspect when I get a chance to run a Freedom City game again various elements of the Algernon Files and other superhero settings will show up in it. In fact, I've been thinking of late how well Fires of War and the Golden Age of Freedom compliment each other...
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Post by Aaron Sullivan » Wed Jul 05, 2006 3:41 pm

Reciprocity in thought and action, Steve.... :wink:

I unashamedly cannibalize vast chunks of Freedom City for my own M&M campaign. I even have a nice little document summarizing the changes to make it mesh harmoniously with the Algernon Files setting. I might break down at some point and post them over in the thread I harp around in under ROLL CALL (so as to no longer detract from attention to Davies fine original thread here...[JaneVoice] I get started talking, yessirree I tellya, I can't hardly find an end [/JaneVoice]). :D

Back to your interesting musings, Monsieur Davies...
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Post by VIRTUE » Thu Jul 06, 2006 8:28 am

After talking to my players about how they like the idea of original characters and Classic comic book characters im going to do somthing very similar

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Geebah.

Post by Davies » Thu Jul 06, 2006 11:38 am

:oops: Egoboo from two of the guys I most admire in the game design business. I don't know how I'm gonna keep my head from swelling ...

Anyway, here's some updated and altered background data for Hardcore, the leader of the Sentinels.

* Holds the dubious distinction of having been the last member to join the original Freedom League before the big blowout with the Katanarchists, after which it was disbanded.

* Operated alone based out of New York for most of the eighties. Met the Raven soon after she started in 1988. They've worked together quite a few times. The sort of tabloid rags that, in other universes, speculate about the love life of Wonder Woman and Superman, have developed an elaborate romance between the two of them. But there's nothing like that going on. Really. They argue all the time, after all, and complain about each other to their friends. No romance there. Nope. :roll:

* Was off-world during the Terminus Invasion, and blames himself for not having been there to help Centurion fight Omega. Possibly, this might be the reason he throws himself into combat with other heavy hitters. (Well, that and it keeps him from getting bored.)

* Helped found the third group of Sentinels in 1996, one of only three charter members still on the team, and the leader of the group.

Chris Davies.
Last edited by Davies on Sat Jul 08, 2006 8:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Aaron Sullivan » Thu Jul 06, 2006 1:16 pm

Quick question (after I already PMed you about the stats, I then actually read them...reflexive response after a recent bad experience, sorry), are you just converting from 1st ed?

Hardcore actually has 2nd ed stats published...in TAF 2.0 (which, given your praise above...thank you, it's always nice to see people like my ramblings, btw...I know you've procured :wink: ). Ask nicely, and I'll email the text of said stats to you. 8)
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Post by Grey Ronin » Thu Jul 06, 2006 1:27 pm

We have done almost the exact same thing Davies. We use the Freedom World as our base with Algenon files added in, Meta-4 to spice things up and just a touch of the DC and Marvel worlds for flavor.

Freedom City is in Massachusetts and the players team is Freedom League: Home. The Sentinels are the west coast team based in Las Vegas, Meta-4 is the Washington D.C. team.

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Post by VIRTUE » Thu Jul 06, 2006 1:35 pm

I think this is the best thing for a setting in Mutants and Masterminds

Davies do you mind ideas posted on this one or should I start a new thread?

(I Had a Thread about Marvel and DC but my players when I sat down and asked them individully liked the idea of original characters its good that none of them Know the Champions Universe either)

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Post by Dragonblade » Thu Jul 06, 2006 6:02 pm

My core universe is an amalgam of Freedom City and Champions 5e. With liberal doses of Marvel and DC thrown in minus many signature characters. No Batman, Superman, Flash, and so on. But there is a Green Lantern Corps in lieu of the Star Knights. And there are Kryptonians, including one of my PCs. On the Marvel side, I don't have the X-men, but I do have Apocalypse, Mr. Sinister, Bastion, and a variation of the Hellfire Club based on Freedom City's Midnight Society. I also have Captain America, but no Iron Man, Spider-Man and so on. One reason for this is that I have offered up my players to take on these roles if they so choose. So far they have all chosen to create original characters.

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Post by Kreuzritter » Thu Jul 06, 2006 8:37 pm

VIRTUE wrote:I think this is the best thing for a setting in Mutants and Masterminds

Davies do you mind ideas posted on this one or should I start a new thread?
ahem

http://www.atomicthinktank.com/viewtopic.php?t=16398

keep what yer doin' davies
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The Atom Family

Post by Davies » Fri Jul 07, 2006 10:28 am

The first and biggest change that the Atom Family has undergone recently is the rescue of Andrea Atom from the Terminus. This occurred in mid-2005, but wasn't revealed to the public until quite recently, as Andrea took a while to catch up with what she's missed over the last twelve years, reconnect with her family, and mourn the loss of her husband.

Mentac could not (or possibly would not) be returned to a physical form. He established a communication link with Chase, but has set out to explore the Omniverse. Andrea's heart-broken, but she seems to be recovering from it ... or possibly the other conflict she's facing is distracting her from it.

That conflict is with her father ... or, from her perspective, with the artificial intelligence that's programmed to behave like and think it's her father. Before the disaster, she and her father had a long-running, largely theoretical debate about whether a personality matrix created from a human mind constituted a survival of the original personality. Her father believed that it was, as the change of medium constituted only a non-differential difference. Andrea, on the other hand, generally argued that changing the context of a mentality in such a manner would result in possibly subtle but significant differences to the mind involved, to the degree that they could no more be considered the same person than a clone of an individual was the same person.

Dr. Atom seems unaware that his daughter believes that he's not really "himself"; it's likely that this is another example of his blind spot when it comes to human interactions. On the other hand, he might realize it and file it away under "things I don't get", to avoid feeling hurt by this rejection. So far, the conflict between them is limited to an ongoing argument over whether she should accompany the children in the field. Dr. Atom would prefer not to risk losing her again, while Andrea has the same concerns about letting her children face dangers without her direct supervision. Left unstated is the fact that Andrea doesn't fully trust "the program" to maintain a watch over them.

In other news ... Tesla Atom finally has a boyfriend! Unfortunately, she doesn't realize that Tom Riddle, the attractive young mathematics student who she's been seeing socially, is nothing more than an elaborate disguise employed by Andre Keston, aka Conundrum, as part of a convoluted scheme to pull off the crime of the century by robbing the Atom Family blind. (None of the Atoms like Harry Potter, or they'd probably have seen through this already.)

A background note on the Atom Family -- while Farsiders don't (IDHMBWM) have Immunity (aging), they do live longer than humans -- a venerable Farsider is probably over 120 years old. Their aging slows down, relative to the human life cycle, in early adolescence -- and the Atom Family children are definitely favoring their paternal ancestry in this case. (Hence, even though Chase Atom is nearly 17, he still looks like the thirteen year old boy who appears in the FC artwork ...)

[Stats for Andrea Atom are here.]
Last edited by Davies on Mon Aug 28, 2006 10:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Champions

Post by Davies » Sat Jul 08, 2006 10:11 am

A Brief History of the Champions

Unlike either of the other two groups known for putting themselves forward as "the greatest American super-team" (the Freedom League and the Sentinels) the Champions' history does not include a previous incarnation as a group of WWII mystery men. Nor was it subsequently refounded in the 1960s. Indeed, the first heroes to come together in San Francisco under the name "the Champions" did not do so until late 1978. But according to their fans, who are spread out across much of the United States, this gives the team a certain freshness of spirit and a sense of not being tied to a lengthy (and, given the nature of the heroic trade, often confused and contradictory) history. Perhaps other groups like the NextGen or the Aerie will one day enjoy a similar sort of enthusiasm.

While the team enjoyed a respectable local career from the founding onward, they didn't come to national or international attention until 1989. Their heroics in rescuing victims of the terrible earthquake that all but destroyed the city brought them wide-spread acclaim. Subsequently, the team leader (founding member Marksman) took the unusual step of getting involved in local politics when he gave the team's endorsement to the "Bay City" project, a plan by which the city would be rebuilt, renamed and hopefully revitalized. With the Champions' support, the initial stages of the project were a resounding success.

Then tragedy struck. Along with heroes from across the nation (and around the world) the Champions travelled to Freedom City in 1993 to assist in defending the world from the Terminus Invasion. No group of heroes was unscathed by this dire conflict ... but except possibly for Force Ops, no group suffered losses like the Champions did. Nearly all of the teams' active membership, as well as its reserve, died in the battle. The survivors were largely crippled. Marksman somehow appeared to have escaped serious injury, but observers noted that he seemed to be in great physical pain, almost holding on by a thread, when he announced that the team was dissolved.

The loss of the Champions was a serious shock to Bay City's civic pride and economy. While the reconstruction continued, it operated at a slower pace; the mayor who had initialized the project was defeated at his next bid for election. There was even serious discussion of returning the city to its original name. For most of the nineties, it seemed that Bay City's hopes and dreams for the future had died with the city's heroes. Another team, the Justice Foundation, would be founded only a few months later, doing much to combat super-crime in the area, but dissolved in 1998 after a number of unfortunate incidents.

Then, in early 2001, a charismatic new mayor was elected, and in his inaugural address, proclaimed that the land needed heroes. It's likely that he was trying to appeal to a general spirit of civic-minded "heroism", rather than calling for superheroes, but we don't always get exactly what we want. Just a few weeks later, a group of six relatively inexperienced superheroes joined forces to rescue Bay City from the Asesinos, a group of South American super-mercenaries in the employ of a major drug cartel. There was some outcry about the use of a venerated name when none of the new heroes had any connection to the original group, but these were silenced when Marksman made a brief televised appearance -- his first since 1993 -- to announce that he fully suported the new goup.

The "new" Champions would subsequently battle the secret serpent army of King Cobra, the wacky but surprisingly dangerous Foxbat, the self-proclaimed Ultimates, Professor Muerte and Terror Incorporated, and (perhaps their most dangerous fight) the incredibly powerful psychic known as Menton, a former lieutenant of Overshadow. But it wasn't until they prevented Overthrow from exploiting the confusion after the 9/11 terrorist attacks to stage their own assault against Bay City that they were catapulted to national fame. While none of their subsequent cases have had quite as much significance, the team is aware that they have both a great legacy to equal or exceed, and the eyes of the world on them ...

Current Membership:

Seeker: (Real name unknown) When asked about his origins, Seeker will usually tell of being orphaned in the Australian outback, growing up half-fermal among the animals (which are intelligent and very talkative, half the time he tells this story) until he was discovered by the last survivor of a Japanese Army Ninja Recon Team who landed on Australia during WWII. He'll claim that he was taught his skills by the ninja master, before being sent to America in pursuit of ultimate truth. Sometimes his sensei is murdered by traditional ninja, outraged that their skills have been given to an outsider. And always, as he reaches the high point of romance and tragedy in his tale, Seeker will pause, look at his fascinated audience ... and wink broadly, then start discussing something else entirely. The weather, say.

What is known for certain is that he's a very good martial artist who doesn't hate to pull out weapons from his small, portable arsenal if he thinks they'll be needed to take down an opponent. He seems capable of switching instantly from a genial, even clowning figure to a serious, even grim warrior. He's also quite adept at surviving in the wild, and based on his accent he really is from Australia. So some of his usual story could be true. Maybe.

Obsidian: (Real name unpronounceable) About 30,000 years ago, a starship from the Stellar Empire arrived on Earth with a diplomatic mission, lead by a young prince, aimed at making contact with the most advanced civilization on this newly discovered world. Sadly, at that point that was the Serpent People of Lemuria, who seized the prince and cast a spell on him and all his retainers that turned them from living stone to ... well, unliving stone. They then stashed the statues in a cave beneath what would one day be California, and tried to discover the secrets of the aliens' starship. (This did not work out very well for them.)

In 1999, spelunkers exploring the vast caves opened up beneath Bay City discovered those statues, and somehow broke the spell on the only one that had surived intact for all the ages -- that of the prince. Shaken by the realization that he was the only one of his kind on this world, and possibly the only one left in the universe, the prince chose to do honor to his people's memory and, in the name of the Stellar Empire, became the protector of the young world of Earth.

Quantum: Starlyn Johnson's middle-class family was moderately shocked when she announced that she was going to try to become a police officer ... a black, female police officer -- in Los Angeles. She explained that she was doing this so that there'd be more money for her younger brother to go to college, but truthfully, she was also trying to make amends for her older brother's life of crime. So she became a cop, endured harassment and bigotry, stayed clean despite many temptations -- and ended up recruited by AEGIS as a field agent.

Only a few years later, though, her parents were killed and her little brother crippled when enemies of her older brother came looking for him at the family's house. She went hunting for them, and was lured into a trap by agents of Overthrow using the gangs to camouflage their activities. Starlyn's anger and fear unleashed her long-suppressed latent mutant abilities, and she scattered the terrorists and got out with her hide intact. Unfortunately, AEGIS policy then required the resignation of any agent who developed super-powers. So Starlyn became a superhero instead ... albeit one who usually acts like a cop or a federal agent.

Defender: It was never really a question of whether or not James Harmon V was going to be a superhero. His father had been one, operating as a costumed gadgeteer in the late 60s and early 70s. Before that, his great-great grandfather was an explorer and WWI ace, his great-grandfather was a gangbusting treasury agent, and his grandfather was a Ranger in WWII. It was really more a question of when he was going to take the step.

It finally came when he and a few college buddies designed and built a light-weight but powerful suit of flying, strength-amplifying armor. Equipped with the tools he needed, there was no real deep thought about what he was going to do with this disovery ... as is perhaps clear from his choice of sobriquet. (Yes, even he admits that "Defender" is a cheesy name, but he picked it and feels that he's stuck with it.)

Solitaire: Elaine King is probably not her True Name. In her line of work -- magic or superheroing, take your pick -- it's not wise to reveal that, even to those you love. An orphan, she was recruited and trained by the Covenant's Order of Simon. One of their most talented pupils ever, she was ultimately sent to assassinate an American senator who was (she was told) in league with the forces of Hell. But when she scouted the target, she couldn't see any evidence of such corruption. She finally confronted him, and was persuaded of his innocence. Angrily, Elaine returned to the chapterhouse and demanded to know what was going on.

She was told that she'd passed her final test. It wasn't enough for an agent to mindlessly obey orders; she had to know when to question them, or even refuse them. Elaine stared at them, and then said, "I refuse all future orders, then," and teleported away. She took the name Solitaire to indicate that she would no longer be anyone's agent. (The Covenant still isn't happy about this defection, but figures that at least she's fighting the good fight.)

Jaguar: Samuel (that's sam-u-WALL) Villagatos is a man cursed. Perhaps the curse is one on his family, perhaps it is one that has fallen on him due to reasons he does not yet know. But be that as it may, when he becomes angry, he transforms into a humanoid catman. Fortunately, Samuel is a basically good man, and the catman shares Samuel's morality, though it is much less intelligent and more instinctive in its behavior. Because of this, he is also able to release the cat voluntarily.

In his human form, Samuel is a talented detective and brawler, and uses these talents to assist the Champions. But he knows very well that in combat with superhumans, they need Jaguar, not him, and so he releases his beast, and every time hopes that this will not be the time he regrets doing so ...

[Stats for the Champions can be found here.]
Last edited by Davies on Fri Sep 29, 2006 11:23 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Protonik

Post by Davies » Sun Jul 09, 2006 12:45 pm

Generally assumed to be a Russian "clone" or "copy" of Centurion, the truth of Protonik's origins is hidden in the massive amount of Russian classified files that have not been (and probably never will be) released to the West. His story begins in 1981, when Soviet researchers discovered a method of travelling to alternate realities. To their horror, the first one they found wa a bizarre world where the Oktober Revolution had never taken place, and modern-day Russia was ruled over by a figure called the Czar -- whom they recognized as a counterpart of the Soviet Union's great defender, Bogatyr! (This may have done a great deal to destabilize these scientists beliefs in historical inevitability, to say nothing of its influence on the assassination of Bogatyr later that year.) This was the world dubbed Anti-Earth by Johnny Rocket when he first visited it, nearly two decades later.

If the scientists were appalled by what they found in this other Russia, what they found in its corresponding America was rather intriguing; it was ruled over by "the Praetor", who was quite obviously a counterpart to the Centurion, of their own world's America. But they were also familiar enough with Centurion's origins to realize that they meant the Praetor could not reasonably exist. Centurion had been sent to Earth from another reality; were they supposed to believe that there were also multiple iterations of that world, as well as Earth? Utter nonsense! (Actually true, but they didn't know it.) Something must have happened to create this counterpart during the passage of Centurion's life pod through the Terminus ... which suggested some a fascinating question: were there others?

It took the Russian team nearly five years of potentially deadly labor to find a "divergent" version of Centurion's life pod that had yet to slip through a rift in the Terminus to an alternate Earth. Returning to their base with it, they then subjected it to a variety of exotic radiations in an attempt to crack it open, intending to use the mutated infant's genetic material as the basis for a new generation of Russian super-soldiers. Unexpectedly, when the pod finally did open up, it revealed a fully grown man with coal black hair and dark brown eyes.

His mind was that of an infant; however, he learned astonishingly quickly, and was discussing the theoretical underpinnings of his abilities and Marxist-Leninist philosophy within the week. His powers were different from Centurion's in many ways, and seemed -- at least initially -- to be greater. A thrilled commissariat dubbed him Protonik, the new leader of the People's Glorious Metahuman Defense Collective. (Or the People's Heroes, to use the less flowery term.) He served the state faithfully, saving many lives after the Chernobyl melt-down and exposing the activities of many enemy agents. In 1987, however, he was given an assignment that he didn't particularly relish -- challenging Centurion, via a press conference, to a test of might on Kaiju Island.

Centurion, it should be noted, was not in a particularly good mood. Wounded from last year's passage of the Moore Act, that left him essentially exiled from his home town, he accepted the challenge in hopes of working out his frustrations on the new Russian super. When he arrived on Kaiju Island, he was struck by the somber expression on Protonik's face. Before the fight was scheduled to begin, the younger man hesitantly raised a hand -- looking like nothing so much as one of Mark Leeds' students -- and asked if he could have a question answered. Puzzled, Centurion nodded.

"Can you please explain to me how this melee is supposed to demonstrate the superiority or one of our respective systems of government, given that such matters do not actually seem to have had anything to do with our empowerment as individuals?"

Centurion blinked, then sat down on a conveniently placed boulder. "Well, that's a very good question."

Geologists listening for seismic disturbances on the island were seriously perplexed when nothing happened. While the discussion that ensued was quite heated at times, nothing was raised except the participant's voices. They debated many apparently tangential issues, and also discussed their mutual origin. (Having met his canine counterpart from Ani-Earth, Centurion was intellectually prepared to accept Protonik as an alternative version of himself.) Ultimately, when Protonik received a radio transmission ordering him back to Russia, the two men parted as friends. Centurion returned home in a much better state of mind; discussing the democratic system with Protonik had restored his own appreciation for its ideals, no matter how badly he'd been betrayed by their realities.

For his part, Protonik was pensive as he made his way home. When he was questioned as to why he had not fought, he answered that he hadn't felt any particular need to to prove himself to Centurion, and wondered why true believers in the inevitable victory of Communism -- as those around him certainly ought to be -- should feel so insecure about the West. This did not go over very well. Less than a year, Protonik quietly defected to the United States. Believing that America was well-supplied with heroes, he spent the next several years doing farm work in Kansas. He was very happy.

Just why Protonik was unavailable during the Terminus Invasion is a subject he's never discussed with anyone. (Captain Thunder, who has notably never had a nice thing to say about Protonik, believes that he cowarded out.) There was some speculation that Protonik was going to adopt Centurion's uniform and name, but he elected to do neither, instead simply becoming a crime-fighter in Freedom City in honor of his fallen friend.

Unfortunately, Protonik's mysterious origins, ties to Russia and absence during the Terminus Invasion all made his activities somewhat suspect to a Freedom City still learning to trust its heroes again, as was did the fact that he was never invited to join the Freedom League. After three frustrating years, Protonik decided that he'd had enough, and left Freedom City, the United States and Earth itself behind. Since then, he's spent most of his time in space, contemplating the beauty of the cosmos and monitoring traffic through the solar system. He briefly returned to assist Earth's defenders during the Grue Invasion, but when Captain Thunder offered an apology and membership in the expanded Freedom League, Protonik curtly declined. "I have better things to do," he said, before soaring off once more.

[Stats for Protonik can be found here.]
Last edited by Davies on Mon Aug 28, 2006 10:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

Davies
Cosmic Entity
Cosmic Entity
Posts: 7143
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2004 4:00 pm

The Next Gen

Post by Davies » Tue Jul 11, 2006 1:27 pm

The Next Gen are, to be blunt, not in a good place, collectively or individually.

First, they lost Bowman. Well, they didn't lose him; he graduated and went off to join the Freedom League, just like -- in theory, at least -- all of them are going to do. But his departure left them without a real leader figure, and it also made them realize, for the first time, that their team isn't really supposed to be permanent. Seven helped keep up their morale, and Bolt's enthusiasm helped when he joined, but things weren't ever going to be the same.

Some personal issues have been dogging a number of the kids lately. Sonic has had to deal with a new teen-aged vigilante operating in Lincoln who calls himself the new Black Avenger. (If Wilson Jeffers wasn't already upset enough by this theft of his name, the new kid is patterning himself after the way the Black Avenger looked in the Freedom Friends cartoon!) For her part, Siren recently found out that her uncle, the black sheep of her family (her father's half-brother, born to one of her grand-father's mistresses) has quietly arrived in Freedom City. As he's always been one of the loudest voices calling for war on the surface world, his presence is a mystery that she'd like resolved.

The team also has a couple of new members who -- to say the least -- are having trouble finding their niche. One of them is the former vigilante Quarrel, a fourteen year old girl with uncanny accuracy with a crossbow, who patterns herself after Arrow, idolizes the FORCE Ops, and doesn't really want anything to do with a team that used to be run by Bowman. The other is seventeen year old Caias Ward -- who, according to one future timeline, will become the second Centurion. (Yes, Duncan Summers knows this. There's not much he doesn't know.) At this point in this timeline, Caias (or Kay, to use his nickname) doesn't want anything to do with superheroics, wishes he didn't have powers, and only reluctantly accompanies the rest of the team into the field. He won't pick a code-name, and his idea of a costume is a jacket with a hoody pulled up to hide most of his facial features, and a pair of dark sunglasses.

But Seven defintely has the most serious problems facing her. She recently had her first confrontation with Lucious Cabot, learning -- in the process -- that he was responsible for the accident that killed her parents. Furthermore, she's learned that both her grandmother and Eldrich were well aware of this, and hid it from her (admittedly, for what they thought were excellent reasons.) This has damaged her relationship with both of her mentors. Wondering who, if anyone, she can trust has also robbed her of a lot of the empathy that she used to use in leading the team.

Seven has decided that when she graduates from the Academy, later this year, she's not going to accept the Freedom League's standing offer. Instead, she's going to make war on Cabot and his law firm. She's aware that she's just one mage against a small army of the most powerful creatures of darkness on Earth, and she suspects that she probably can't win. And that's why, alone in her room at night, she sometimes takes out the business card that the smiling man handed to her, right after she found out about her parents, and tries to tell herself that she'd never, ever, ever make that call.

Would she?

[Updated stats for Seven can be found here.]
Last edited by Davies on Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:48 am, edited 2 times in total.

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