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Zeroth
We are the Game Masters, and this is our world.

This is the world of Earth in my universe, where I and my fellow Game Masters are the sole powers. This universe is ours to shape to our will, and those that defy us cease to exist.

In the center of this universe resides the planet known as Earth. Being the center of the universe, this blue world has a special significance to us Game Masters, and so many cosmic events shall involve or focus on this infinitesimal, yet important sphere. This is by design, not accident. Unfortunately for the planet, they know not of our existence, nor their importance in this universe. They simply exist in a world they think they control.

To most of the people on this world, everyday life does not involve aliens, supernatural battles, or cosmic conflicts. However, this is about to change, for my fellow Game Masters and I have chosen to ignite the spark in this planet as well as in other worlds. Soon heroes and villains alike, both powerful and powerless, will appear and the conflicts will begin.

Much mystery will be revealed by these noble and nefarious beings. The Lost City of Atlantis is hidden, much like we Game Masters are, however soon this ancient realm may be unearthed to the rest of the planet, to either the world's detriment or delight. Even the wondrous civilization of the Moon and beyond may choose to unveil themselves after millennia spent in hiding. Marvels both technological and magical await those who possess the fortitude to seek them out, however this would be their choice.

We Game Masters only interfere when times require it.

The people of this world saw the unimaginable as the planet’s new protectors repelled a demon attack on the city of Lost Haven in what has forever become known as D-Day. Then they trembled with fear as the terrorist organization known only as Pax Metahumana threatened the entire human race by encompassing several US cities with domes that had the ability to transform those trapped within them and that would slowly overtake the entire world. Much to their relief, once again a loose alliance of heroes disrupted their plans and captured those responsible. Then they were shocked as an anti-meta human organization calling themselves the Hounds of Humanity used an orbital satellite known as The Finger of God to wipe several US cities from the face of the Earth, leaving thousands dead in their wake. However, their reign of terror was stopped by the combined efforts of the world's heroes. The Hounds of Humanity had been defeated and their leadership imprisoned, however, the scars that have been inflicted will be felt for generations.

To the people of the world, the unusual has become common place. Super has become the new normal, and heroes have become more than costumed do-gooders, they have become a symbol of hope to some, and something to be feared by others.

Now this world faces its gravest threat yet. An Armada that has traveled across the stars extinguishing all life that it has encountered, led by a tyrant unlike anything that our heroes have faced to date.

Will the world’s new protectors be up to the task? Or will the invaders from the planet Arlaaek succeed in eliminating all life on Earth, and beyond? Only time will tell...
Hidden 9 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by nitemare shape
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nitemare shape GM of Create A Hero and Star Wars: Legacies

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Dr. Jonas Shaw took one last look through his telescope before he returned to his work. One of the benefits of working in the Lunar Research Station was the unparalleled views of the solar system that being on the moon provided. The research station itself was a partnership between NASA and Midas Industries. The complex, which sat just outside of the Sea of Tranquility was relatively large. At 3,585 feet long, it was roughly fifteen times the size of the International Space Station and cost about 6 times as much. Dr. Shaw was one of the leading meta geneticists on the East Coast, and was excited to study the effects that zero gravity may have on the meta gene. His experiments had lead to some startling and exciting conclusions, which he looked forward to sharing with his employer, Richard Midas.

As he was making his way across his lab, he felt something odd. There was a strange rumbling sensation, and then he felt as if he was being pulled upward. He didn't understand what could be causing this strange phenomena, and then just as suddenly as it had begun, it stopped.

“Dr. Shaw, we're getting some seriously strange readings. We just experienced a gravitational anomaly, but we can't find anything on the sensors that could have caused it.” Came a voice over the communications array. He wasn't sure, but he thought it was Lewis, another of the scientists.

“No kidding. I'll be right over, we have to figure out exactly what the hell that was and if we can expect another incident.” Shaw said as he he turned to leave his lab, again partially floating in the reduced gravity within the complex.

Fear overtook Shaw as he laid eyes on something that he never could have imagined in his wildest dreams. Appearing seemingly out of nowhere, a massive ship appeared overhead, casting a large shadow over not only the research facility, but over the moon itself, leaving the celestial body in darkness. However, as the ship passed overhead, Dr. Shaw watched as a bright light seemed to drop from the underbelly of the ship, slowly descending toward the surface of the moon.

“Oh..my..God....” Shaw exclaimed as the glowing projectile hit the moon's surface. The impact kicked up a wave on sand and rock that made its way directly toward the research facility. The very ground began to shake, and the structure of the building itself began to buckle. The doctor's life flashed before his eyes as the calamity engulfed the research station, tearing the structure apart.

No sooner had the gargantuan ship moved beyond the moon than the front of the ship began to open, revealing a massive set of bay doors, and from those doors, several asteroids that the mother ship had harvested from the void of space as it traveled across the stars were sent hurdling directly toward Earth.

***


Sergei Daminev slowly walked through Red Square, as he had done thousands of times. He had seen State Parades roll through the Square, showing off the vast might of the Russian military. He had attended sporting events and even concerts here. Yet, sometimes he just enjoyed walking through the Square and taking in the history that surrounded him every time he walked through it. The views of St. Basil's Cathedral were unmatched, and he felt a strange pride whenever he passed by it's multicolored spires. It had also been the place where he had met his beloved Anna, who he had spent the last thrity five years with.

Nothing had been the same since she passed away two years prior. He spoke to his children and grandchildren a few times a month, but he had essentially been passing the time until he could once again join his dear wife.

As he continued to gaze at the cathedral, something else caught his attention. Something coming toward the city from the heavens.

“Anna...” He said as the asteroid crashed down on the city, reducing it to little more than flaming rubble.

The scene was repeated numerous times all over the globe. Berlin Germany was destroyed, as was Okinawa Japan. Thirteen million people died in a flash of fire and destruction as Shenzhen China was wiped from the face of the Earth. A towering mushroom cloud could be seen from hundreds of miles away when an asteroid struck a nuclear weapons storage facility in Pyongyang North Korea, killing untold millions.

An asteroid crashed down just outside of Versailles France, the ensuing fireball left a path of destruction all the way to Paris, where the Eiffel Tower may have been spared, but the city did not escape damage, as a number of large fires burned throughout the city.

Yet another asteroid crashed down in the Pacific Ocean, sending a tsunami raging through the sea, washing over the islands of Hawaii, and sending more waves toward the California coast.

***


Gemma Stanley walked along Pacific Point's famed Surfside Beach. For decades, this stretch of beach had been a favorite among the local surfers who took advantage of the large waves that had made this area one of the premiere surfing spots in all of Southern California. Unfortunately, an increase in great white shark activity in the area had driven some of the surfers away toward safer waters in recent months.

Gemma loved this beach. It was where she and her friends Izzy and Amanda would often come to enjoy a day relaxing in the sun. They'd go swimming to cool off on hot afternoons, or just relax on the sand talking about classes or guys, or whatever happened to be going on in their lives at the moment. But it was also a place that she liked to go to alone. She would walk along the beach in quiet reflection with the sand between her toes as she listened to the sounds of the waves crashing and the seagulls calling while she gazed out at the ocean and watched the sky turn brilliant shades of orange, red, and purple as the sun seemed to slip beneath the waves.

Gemma walked along the beach just at the water line. As the waves came in the water would wash over her feet up to her knees, and she could feel the surf trying to pull her back out as the water rushed back into the sea. Then, off in the distance, she saw a flash of light and saw something streaking toward the Earth.

“That's weird.” She said to herself aloud as she continued walking.

Then the water began to recede away from the beach.

“Oh, that's not good.” Gemma said as she began to turn to run.

But it was too late.

There was a loud roaring sound, almost like a hundred freight trains bearing down on her all at once, and as she looked back out to see towards the source of the sound, she saw it.

A massive wall of water rushing towards her, and the dozens of other people who had gathered on Surfside Beach.

***


San Francisco, California

Slipstream stood outside of the Redwood Vista apartment complex. She had been in the city for a television interview with Kelly Sandbourne on her popular afternoon TV Show Live From the Bay with Kelly. However, the interview proved to be short lived. Shortly after she had taken her seat on the set, the call came in that the San Francisco Police SWAT unit had responded to a hostage situation at the apartment complex. From what she had gathered, a man had broken into his ex wife's apartment and was holding her and the couple's two children hostage. It had taken her only a matter of moments to get to the scene of the ongoing hostage negotiations from her seat on stage at the television studio which was all the way across the city.

When she arrived, the SWAT team had already cordoned off the apartment complex, with police vehicles blocking each entrance and exit. The hostage negotiator, a young Latina officer not much older than Slipstream stood behind the police line speaking into a loudspeaker. Slipstream had been impressed by the young officer's steadfast commitment to getting everyone out of this situation alive. She had been both firm, yet empathetic as she spoke to the man.

“Hey, you!-” A crass voice called out. “Cape! I'm talkin' to you!” the man, a heavy set detective in his mid fifties called out to Slipstream.

“Slipstream.” She replied.

“Sorry...Slipstream,-” the detective said, sarcastically exaggerating her name. “There's so many of you damn capes these days it's a miracle anyone can keep any of yous straight.”

Slipstream just nodded as the detective went on.

“You're the fast one, right?” He asked.

“Well, that's one way to put it.” Slipstream started.

“Good. Can you get in there and take 'im out? He's starting to get on edge and I don't think the hostages'll last much longer.” He said in a heavy Brooklyn accent, which had the circumstances been different, Slipstream would have found somewhat amusing, considering how out of place it sounded on the West Coast.

“Yeah, I can get in there and drop him.” She told the detective.

“Good. Then do it.” He said, his voice raising slightly as she took off for the apartment where the man was holding his family hostage.

Slipstream was a mere blur as she raced into the apartment. She burst through the door, splintering it as she entered the apartment. Once she was in the apartment, everything seemed to stand completely still as she made her way toward the armed jilted ex. Neither he, nor his former wife or children appeared to move until she finally came to a stop before the man. It was then, that everything appeared to unfreeze. The wooden splinters from the door feel to the floor, the man, as well as his hostages all let out a startled gasp as the purple and chrome speedster stood before them.

“Hi.” Slipstream said as she hit the man with a right hook that dropped him to the floor.

As Slipstream emerged from the apartment with the three hostages, something off in the distance caught her eye. A flash of light in the sky. She didn't know what it was, perhaps a falling star, though, it was unusual to see one so bright at this time of day.

Then she felt the impact.

Whatever had hit the ground had been big. She could hear the explosions in the distance, but more importantly, she could see the wave of superheated gas and debris, buch like a volcanic pyroclastic flow racing toward the city. She knew that there was little that she could do, but she had to do something.

So she grabbed the two children, Ella and Gabby, ages five and 3, and began to run. It was too late for the people of San Francisco, she knew that based on the impact itself, many of the people who called the Golden City home were already dead. All she could do was escape this catastrophe and save these two children, who had already been through so much.

So she ran as fast as she could. She made it clear across the city, with the flow of burning hot debris right behind her, nearly vaporizing everything in its path. She ran through neighborhood after neighborhood, until she reached the Golden Gate Bridge, and she pressed on. And though she was tired, not accustomed to carrying extra people for such distances, she knew that she was going to make it. Then she felt the bridge buckle as one of the dozens of earthquakes that the impact had set off violently shook it. She stumbled, but remained on her feet until the ground shook again. This time, the shaking and buckling of the bridge was too much, and she lost her footing and fell, skidding several dozen feet.

She looked back at the two children just as they were overtaken by the pyroclastic flow, only to be taken herself seconds later.

***


Lost Haven, Maine

“You sure you want to do this?” Eric asked Scott as he stood beside him in front of the makeshift alter that had been set up at the front of the Grand Ballroom of the Seaside Gateway.

“Eric...” Scott said suppressing a smirk.

“I mean, it's not too late. I can create a distraction so you can...” Eric whistled as he made a flying motion with his arms.

“Eric!” Scott said, perhaps slightly louder than he had intended, and then he began to chuckle. However, all joking came to a sudden end when the music began to play and Alexa started down the isle with her father at her side.

Scott was suddenly awed by his bride to be's beauty as she made her way down the isle with her long flowing dress sweeping behind her. From the moment Scott had met her, he knew that she was the one for him. They had become lovers, and friends...then they became best friends. But they were so much more than that, they were soul mates. Until he met Alexa, he had never felt whole. But she completed him, as he did her. And now, in just moments, he was going to marry the woman of his dreams.

Alexa came to a stop right before Scott, and even from under her veil, he could see her grinning at him. Her father stepped in front of her and with a somewhat forced smile, he shook Scott's hand before taking his seat next to his wife.

Reverend Hynd began welcoming the guests as he began to discuss the joys of marriage, as well as some personal anecdotes about how he had been privileged to know the Winstones for well over thirty years, and he recalled the story of the first time he had met a young Alexa, just weeks after she had been born. He then went on about the first time he had been introduced to Alexa and Scott, and how he knew in that very moment that they just seemed destined for one another, despite her father's objections, which the Reverend joked, he had seemed to have gotten over.

The Reverend then brought Scott and Alexa together before him, and instructed them to face one another. Scott reached out to her, and lifted the veil which had covered her face, and was almost taken aback again by just how stunning she looked. Then, after a few more words, Reverend Hynd announced that Alexa and Scott had prepared their own vows.

“Scott, from the first day that I met you, I knew that there was just something special about you. Right from the start, you were honest and open with me, and you invited me into your world without looking back....”Her words were cut off as a massive shadow overtook the Seaside Gateway, leaving the grand ballroom in near total darkness.

“What the hell is that?” Eric said as he moved toward the large picture windows that looked out over the Maine coast. As he and the others who had joined him at the window looked up toward the sky, they could see what appeared to be the outline of a ship.

“I don't know, but it doesn't look good.” Scott said.

Yeah...uh...maybe you should, you know...” Eric said absentmindedly as he gazed at the large craft.

Scott knew that Eric had been right. He didn't know what was going on, but he had a terrible feeling that that it wasn't good. So he stepped away from the window, and moved silently toward the back of the ballroom, before slipping out the back doors. He made his way down the stairs and out the front door of the Seaside Gateway, and when he was sure that no one was looking, he hit the switch on the nanotech bracelet. In seconds, the nanites had covered his arm and chest, and soon the rest of his body in the familiar uniform of his famous alter ego, Icon, and took to the sky just as he saw something, a projectile of some sort, headed toward the city.

”My God.” Icon said as the realization of what he was looking at sunk in. A large rock, an asteroid, more than twice the size of a football field was heading straight for the city.

Icon lowered his head and accelerated toward the asteroid, determined to stop it from impacting Lost Haven. He reached the asteroid and managed to get underneath it, putting his hands against the base of the rock and pushing back with all his might. However, it did nothing to slow the descent of the gigantic space rock.

“Come on, damn you!” Icon cried as he strained against the rock, fighting with every fiber of his being to stop the asteroid's descent. Try as he might, the asteroid continued it's journey to the heart of Lost Haven, until finally, he felt something give.

The chunk of rock began to decelerate. Slowly at first, but gradually, he began to slow the rock down, until he had finally stopped its fall to Earth. Then, he pushed against the asteroid more, and finally, he had the space rock heading back to where it came. Breathlessly, Icon guided the asteroid back up through the Earth's atmosphere until he was floating weightlessly in space, where with a shove of the asteroid, he sent it back out into deep space, away from the Earth. However, when he turned to return to his home, he saw the utter devastation that had wrought on the planet. Numerous cities lay in charred ruins, cities all across the globe had been wiped from the map, untold millions of people had been killed.

Icon descended back to Lost Haven, touching down in Sherman Square where several police cruisers had stopped and were trying to control the crowd that had gathered to watch the events that had just unfolded. He wanted to tell the officers to get the people out of the area, that it wasn't safe. But he couldn't. The guilt that he felt for the millions that had been killed, and his inability to save them was almost too much to bare.

“....” Icon suddenly realized that someone had been talking to him. He turned and face one of the officers, a young man, probably only in his second or third year on the force, had been trying to get his attention.

To ask him what was going on.

However, before he could answer, he saw hundreds of smaller ships leaving the massive ship like angry hornets from a nest, all making their way to Lost Haven.
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Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Indy Cooper
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Indy Cooper Deity-in-training

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That morning
Nicky growled at the technicians as they wheeled a weird glowing orb into the chamber she was in. She didn't know how long she had been chained to this wall, but she hadn't been able to do whatever it was that had lent her strength randomly when she was angry. She was able to focus enough to use her martial arts. So she was stuck with her old standby: Screaming and cursing at her enemies.

She held off this time, though. The orb threw her off, as did the lady inside it. She kept flickering in and out, and every time, the orb would spark and spit and she'd appear in the middle again, growing visibly more frustrated. Flames were dancing inside the thing, and she could have sworn they were coming from the woman inside.

Another lady came in. This one the teen recognised as she fixed Nicky with a small, perfunctory smile before turning to the new prisoner. “Mademoiselle Forge, such a pleasure to make your acquaintance.”

The woman in the orb spit something in what Nicky figured was French. The evil woman laughed. “No, of course not! You are here so we can extract you abilities, just as soon as we can figure out how to do so without letting you loose to do what I am sure you imagine to be extreme violence.”

More French, and then, “No, they won't. Your organisation has been...acquired. Thank you for setting it all up for us. However, as quick as you are, you don't have the breadth of experience that we do. Some security measures were not taken, and through those we got your records.”

The French woman's face fell into despair as this monologuing bitch continued. “From there, it was a simple matter to pick up or eliminate your employees. A few made it away, but I'm sure we'll be able to track them down soon en-”

The woman was thankfully cut off as the earth rumbled around them. The lights flickered, and, more importantly,the orb did as well. Quick as thought the Frenchwoman was out, both hands wrapped around the other lady's throat. Several klaxons began wailing and the tramp of boots started down the hallway.

”No,” the escapee said just loudly enough for Nicky to hear over the alarms. ”I should make this slow, but I do not have the time. And so, neither do you, madame.” There was a flare and a scream as both of them disappeared in a burst of flame. When it was out, the fire woman was dropping a smoking corpse. She turned to look at Nicky.

”I don't know who your are, girl, but let's get you out of those chains.” Nicole, awestruck, simply nodded. She had never seen anything so fast and brutal before, and she had been stabbed in the eye. She waited patiently as her rescuer reached up to undo a lock, pulling a lockpick out from her mouth like some sort of spy novel. Which was when the shot rang out.

Concrete cratered from the impact just above her head, and Nicole glanced up past the woman's bright blonde hair to see three security goons with rifles pointed at them. The fire woman spun around as they yelled freeze, and Nicky could feel the smugness as stated her refusal simply. She disappeared again, this time seemingly to go through the teenager and into the wall. Nicole wasn't exactly sure how that works, but the sudden and intense pain she got did not feel like the plan. The whole world distorted in her eyes, splitting into multiple ones. She could hear the Frenchwoman screaming from inside her head oh god what was happening!? And then Nicky didn't think anything anymore.




Just outside of Yuma, Arizona


A Gila Monster sat, sunning itself on a rock. The shadow of a passing thing in the sky made no difference to it after it rotated its head enough to note that it wasn't a buzzard. Funny shape, blotting out a part of the sun, but no matter to the lizard. Its brain wasn't big enough to comprehend aliens. Of course, in just a moment, it too would stop thinking.

There was an explosion, something like a incendiary bomb, which glassed the sand a few metres away from the epicentre. It shattered rock and blew apart the innocent Gila lizard. As the flames died, standing in the middle of the scorched ground was a woman. Charcoal black hair, streaked with bright red and blonde strands, fell well below her waist, wild and tangled, but almost as soon as the first explosion died out, another went off. And now her hair was not just fiery, but actual flames. The figure was wreathed in flames, sprouting from nowhere and going from the soles of her feet all the way up. Random gaps as they moved revealed bronzed skin, but within a few moments the flames began spouting ash and smoke. The few glimpses of her skin now showed soot marks. The only other feature seeming to actually be made of flames was the eyes.

Those eyes turned to the right, where they saw an asphalt road. She marched towards it, striding like she had a purpose, but unhurried. As she reached it, the asphalt began to bubble and liquefy, and behind her, the sand held perfectly formed footprints in glass. She looked right, then left, then right again, then turned that way and began walking, with the same measured pace. As she walked, the flames trailed behind her, much like from a torch as one carries it forward, so that any observer would at least be able to tell that there was a person inside them.

She came to the sign, looking at it and reading carefully.

Yuma City Limits, pop. 97,908

With a roar like a furnace, the figure lashed one hand like she was swinging a sword. From the tips of her fingers flew bright white flames, which took the sign in a rapidly expanding fireball. As they rocketed back, the only evidence of the sign were two red hot stumps of the metal posts that had held it up, the rest of the material scattering in droplets before vapourising in the heat. She surveyed her work for a moment, then continued her march into the town. Yuma was about to have a very bad day.
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Hidden 9 mos ago 9 mos ago Post by Dedonus
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Dedonus Kai su teknon;

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Christopher Arthur III

Lost Haven, ME

Chris had been working at the R&D facilities in the Sherman Center, a historic building renovated by Chris to function as the base of operations for the Guardians and a temporary home for him while his own mansion back in Virginia was being reconstructed. Because S.T.R.I.K.E. had been defunct for weeks since the Hounds of Humanity uprooted the spy organization from its hidden abodes, this was one of the few places left where Chris could work on his side projects.

Ever since Chris had figured out how to restore the memories of the people who had their quantum vibrations altered to no longer match the natural frequency of this reality, he had been slaving away trying to develop something to reset an individual’s quantum vibrations so people’s bodies and not just their memories would be turned back to normal. However, it was proving difficult to find ethical test subjects. Even before he wanted to try animal trials (let alone human trials), he wanted to use inanimate objects first. It was already difficult tracking down people who have been affected, but random junk was another story.

While Chris was tinkering with the machine he hoped would solve the problems he had run into, his concentration was interrupted when George called over the building’s intercoms.
“Master Arthur, you might want to flip on the television.”

Chris swiveled in his chair and glued his eyes onto the television screen. A shower of asteroids had slammed into several cities across the globe: San Francisco, Berlin, Moscow, and more. A giant tidal wave was raging towards the American West Coast. Finally, a massive ship that could only be described as otherworldly appeared just outside of Lost Haven, essentially right on his front lawn.

“George, get everyone into the basement bunker,” Chris commanded as he jumped to his face and started to pull on his jumpsuit for his Iron Knight armor.
“And what are you going to do, sir?”

“I have a welcoming committee to assemble.”

Chris then walked over the far side of the R&D floor and tapped a touchscreen panel on the wall. The wall parted, sliding to each side and revealing a hidden corridor lined with high-tech machinery and gadgets. The floor beneath Chris began to slide forward, like a conveyer belt. As Chris moved forward, the automated assembly line of smart robots proceeded to meticulously attached the Iron Knight armor onto Chris, piece by piece.

“Activate the Guardians Protocol.”

A holographic display appeared in the corridor next to Chris and followed along him as he continued to armor up. Seven names showed up on this display. Chris saw the display UI indicating that the computer was starting to initialize the communication link to the Guardians’ cards he had handed out just weeks prior.

Icon: Link Connected
Radiance: Link Connected
Lyger: Link Connected
Terra Firma: Link Connected
Slipstream: ERROR: Link Not Found
Voyager: Link Connected
Vigilante: ERROR: Link Not Found

Chris was not surprised by the error code appearing next to Vigilante’s name, as Icon told him how he refused to take the ID card Chris had provided to all the Guardians who had accepted a spot on the team. However, he was shocked that Slipstream’s card was deactivated. Chris had specifically made these cards resilient enough for Slipstream’s superspeed to not ruin the microchips embedded inside. Normally Chris would immediately investigate this issue, but because of the impending damage right outside, this problem needed to be placed on the back burner.

“Guardians,” Chris said into his armor’s microphone, now that he was fully armored up, “gather up.”

At this moment, a set of bay doors jolted open right in front of Chris. He then launched himself through the opening and soared into the Lost Haven skyline.
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Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Alternax
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Richard had been on standby for a couple hours now, just outside an aged apartment block, inside his command carrier. The plan was for a SWAT team to flush out some metahuman drug den for officers outside to arrest. After doing his own detective work, he found out that they were chasing a small group of buyers, but that didn’t mean they could be ignored. Some of the kids, straight out of high school, had some low-level strength enhancements, the level that could easily break walls and dent cars; and that was exactly what they did, along side ripping ATMs right out of the wall.

The monitors inside the back trailer connected right to the SWAT team cameras, allowing them to sync up in real time. Richard’s partner, Jennifer, was seated near the wall watching the monitors alongside him. A few moments passed as they formed up on the door, the SWAT leader placed his arm in the air, by his head, and signaled with his fingers.

3… 2.. 1

“Go, go, go!”

“Police, get down on the ground!”

Despite being super strong, they weren’t at the level that they could ignore bullets, and tear gas was something else altogether.

“That’s my cue.” Richard nodded to his partner and climbed into his suit, as soon as the armor panels hissed closed, he strolled out.

-----

Three figures jumped out of the third story window, collecting some good air-time Richard noted, before falling almost literally into his arms. The first boy landed almost a meter from the command trailer, right in front of Richard who was now standing outside. His eyes widened and darted from side to side as he considered his options, and then tried to punch through. Richard sent a swift uppercut, knocking the first kid onto his backside. The second tried to make a break for it, before being closelined by Richard’s extended right arm, and fell right onto his friend.

“Sorry, this road’s closed off.” He said with a smirk under his helmet.

The third, misplaced himself. On the way down he clipped his feet on a streetlamp, fell forward, slammed his head on the roof of the command car, and then again on the pavement. Instant knockout.

“That brings this chapter to a close. Any word from Forensics on those pills?” Richard asked out loud. Artemis was strangely quiet, usually she at least had something to say, congratulation at the end of a case or something.

“Richard, look up.” Jen, said over the radio. A giant shadow now eclipsed the sun from their view. An enormous object hovered over the city, and Richard had no idea what to think.

“What the hell is that?”

“A-aliens? For real?” One of the officers on standby outside had stuttered out.

The alien ship had already left an impression on them, but then a fiery rock easily the size of a few football fields rocketed towards them, and Richard could only stare. This was something that his armor couldn’t stop, he was going to die in an instant; his body tensed up on instinct, as if standing firm was going to help.

“It’s Icon.” Artemis finally spoke up. Richard squinted his eyes to get a closer look, a small window suddenly popped up, giving him a zoomed in look at Icon as he struggled.

“You have to, come on!” Richard shouted; he was clearly having trouble as he flew out of view, blocked by several buildings as he continued to fly away. A few moments later, Richard along with everyone in Lost Haven, could see that same asteroid flying back up into space.

“Yes!”

“Woo Hoo!”

“Go, Icon!”

Everyone on the ground shouted and cheered, then Artemis suddenly spoke up again.

“We need to get back to the station, we’re going to be sitting ducks for what comes next.”

“Hey, Artemis, you saw that right, can we really do anything right now?” There was a slight tinge of despair in his voice, he had just seen his own life flash before him, and he wasn’t confident he could fight that. His eyes widened again as hundreds of smaller darts left that same ship.

“Fighters? What can we do against that?”

“Trust in me.”
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Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Mercinus3
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In

A Man Out of Time #9: The Bastion of Pacific Point

Location: Pacific Point, California


Thwack!

It didn’t take The Wanderer long before he was faced with criminals. Much like those who he faced at the library, the criminals that he came across all had answered some mysterious call to a bounty placed on every heroes’ heads. For some of the men he came across, he successfully thwarted the targeted hero from biting it with minimal damage to himself. However, it was few and far in between.

” Tell me who ordered the bounty!”

This had been another fortunate case where the mutant got to the hero before the men put a bullet into her skull. Hed acted with swift but brutal justice that came close to the justice he dished out in the wastelands of the future to allow for her to escape to help in the future. With broken bodies of unconscious bodies, he carried on looking at the one still conscious.

Thwack!

Another held-back slap from the mutant on the man’s face. ” Who made the order for you to target other heroes,” he demanded, the fires of fury smoldering in his eyes. No answer came. ” You don’t know how much shit you are in. Your buddies all unconscious from the same treatment while I’ve been asking the same question. As you are the last one still conscious and I have all the time in the world, I will get the answers from you by any means necessary.” It was an idle threat, but it’s all he had.

Still no answer.

Crack!

The man screamed in pain as The Wanderer grabbed one of his fingers and folded it back on itself. He shook his head at the same pattern from the other criminals he faced. No one was going to answer him and seemed to think there were people worse than him that would allow for such silence. Still, he had to get the answers.

As he was about to ask the question again, the distant rumbles of something were growing louder and louder. He stopped for the moment in mild confusion as he tried to pick out the source. The waves of psionic energy seemed unperturbed in their influence. In his experiences in the wastes of the future, sounds that occur in the environment but not disturbing the rhythms of the psionic energy means that something natural is happening and needed to be avoided for survival. As his experiences began to move away from the sound, his mind snapped back to the reality he was now in. I am not in my time. Instead, he had to relearn his action. I have a duty to protect these people from the future that I live.

” Well… looks like it's your lucky day,” he spoke, his smoldering eyes focusing on the man he held in his hand, ” But don’t think this is over. I will find you again and I will have my answers.”

Having little time left to figure out the source of the sound, he reared back and slammed his head against the man’s temple. The man went limp as he instantly went unconscious, though sank to the ground when the mutant released his grasp. He looked at a tower in the direction of the sound and phased out of the alley.

Once he phased back on the top of the tower, he couldn’t stop the gasp that left his lips. He watched in horror as a tower of water loomed over the city of Pacific Point, even dwarfing the tower he stood on top of. As it rushed quickly towards the shore, he widened his stance and thrust both his hands in opposite directions. Completely focusing on the task in hand, a groan through gritted teeth gurgled in his throat as the purple and blue flames enveloped him.

Two beams shot out of his hands as they quickly reached to the edges of the city. From the tips of the beam, the psionic barrier sprouted to cover the entire city in a pearlescent dome of purple and blue. Just when the last of the barrier was put up, the full weight of the water slammed into the barrier. The sheer force of the tsunami put a huge strain on The Wanderer’s concentration as he sank onto one knee. The wave crested well over the top of the dome as it curled around the entirety of the dome. The groan in his throat turned into a yell of pain as the concentration formed a searing headache. His eyes were closed tight to shut out everything.

Unaware of the danger that was yet to come, he carried on his focus in just protecting the city he had come to know as his new home. Even though he was concentrating on keeping the water out, one sentence kept repeating in his mind.

Do not let your new home get destroyed.
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Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Gallows
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by KaiserElectric
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Voyager descended from the skies a few miles out to see, searching the wreckage of the plane floating on the waves for any more survivors. Spotting a slight movement, she flew over and found a little girl, probably no older than eight, clinging to the broken wing jutting out from the ocean surface but sinking fast. Spotting the purple light coming from the alien, the girl let out a terrified, hoarse cry and tried to shift towards the alien.

"Easy, I have gotten you," Voyager said, dropping down to grab hold of her. "Arms around my neck...ulp, too tight!"

"D-daddy?" the girl squeaked out, arms wrapped tightly around the hero.

"He is in the orange thingy up there, let us go meet him okay?"

Voyager flew upwards as gently as she could manage towards the Coast Guard helicopter, where two search and rescue officers were waiting. One officer slipped a harness onto her while the alien handed her off into the vehicle. The second she was safely inside, the girl cried out as she dived into the arms of the man that the medics were tending to.

"Is there anyone else?" Voyager asked, raising her voice to be heard over the helicopter blades.

"No, it was just us," the man said weakly, tears in his eyes as he held his daughter close to his heart, to overwhelmed to say anything else.

"You're Voyager, right?" the Coast Guard officer asked. "Can't thank you enough, we would never have spotted that thing so close to the shore."

"I am always happy to assist," Voyager nodded. She was prepared to speed off with a friendly wave towards the shore when she heard it, sounding terrifyingly clear even over the rotors.

The roaring of the water.

Voyager turned to look at the rising wave on the horizon as the helicopter sped off, well out of harms way. Slowly growing higher and higher as it approached, she felt mounting dread as she realized that it was no ordinary wave. Hundreds, maybe thousands of feet high, a rolling wave of death barrelling towards...

...barrelling towards Pacific Point.

With the crack of the sound barrier breaking, Voyager sped towards the massive wave, determined to throw everything she got as it approached. She tried shields and barriers, but the moment it touched the wave they were annihilated or overwhelmed, the feedback hitting her like a cannonball to the chest. Wheezing for breath, she kept trying to use her barriers to block it, dissipate it, do anything to stop it, yet it continued inexorably on. Flying rapidly backwards, she dared to look at the fast-approaching cityscape and the wave overwhelmed her, crashing into her and spitting her back out the other side. Managing to catch herself before she fell into the ocean, Voyager hovered weakly as she coughed and sputtered, sea-water mixing with her own green blood leaking from her mouth an extremities.

No, I cannot be out now, Voyager said to herself as she picked up the chase. Not yet.

She felt a presence and looked up to see an energy sphere forming around the city. Wanderer. Maybe together they could stop it, but she couldn't reach him in time, not for the barrier. But what could she do to stop the wave from here? A barrier wouldn't work.

But a blast might, if it was strong enough.

Without a second thought, Voyager dived into the tidal wave again, reaching desperately for the center as she charged up every bit of energy she had left. Her lungs burned as she let out a silent cry and unleashed everything she had left, right as the wave crashed into Wanderer's energy barrier. Scared onlookers saw the wave glow as it exploded outwards, dissipating against the barrier like a stone and flowing in every direction at once around it, sparing the city and most of the people around it. Still engulfed in the water, she realized that Wanderer's defenses had held. They saved the city.

Voyager: Link Connected

Then the reeling waves carried her away. Something shattered as she crashed through it, shredding her arms before she crashed heavily into the ground.

Voyager: Link Connected

She tried to cry out in pain, but choked on a mouthful of her blood.

Voyager: Link Connected

...why couldn't she move. What was wrong with her neck...

Voyager: Link Connected

...why was it so cold...

Voyager: ERROR: Link Not Found

...

...

...

..

..

..

..

..

.

.

.

.

Voyager: Link Connected
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Alternax
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David had spent most of the morning watching over his daughter Maddie as she watched the morning cartoons. Summer vacation was still going strong and that meant plenty of time for her, though, he really should have been trying to encourage some studying; which is what he was doing. Ever since the Hounds of Humanity attacks, he had been struggling with his own usefulness. As a hero he was probably above average, he had a lot of power to bring, and his own defense made it so even someone unskilled like him could contribute.

But there had to be more he could do.

I have a few weird powers, maybe I should talk to one of the other professors about something…

He sat back into the couch, putting a hand on his chin. Random muggers, other small-time troublemakers, the Hounds of Humanity; they were all solved with fighting, angry emotions flying around. I was told I was needed, but am I? Every single thing I’ve done so far could have been done by anyone.

An arm reached around him and rested softly on his shoulders.

“David, could you take Maddie to her friends house today? I’ve got to show up early today.” His wife, Cecily said.

“Oh yeah, I almost forgot, around noon, right?”

“Yes, thanks.” She planted a kiss on his head, and he turned around to return the favor.

“Ew, why do you guys get so smoochy all the time.” Maddison made a frown.

“Because we love each other very much.”

“Just like we love you.” They both replied, and Maddison stuck her tongue out.

“Bleh.”

-----


Another hour passed and Cecily went out, while Maddison went up to her room to get ready. David spent the latter of which looking through some notes, when a wave of ominous feelings hit him like a truck. His eyes widened and he dropped what he was holding. An echo of pain rushed through his arms, his head, and into his chest. Anxiousness, fear, desperation, a wave of feelings that weren’t his clouded everywhere around him.

“Nngh.” He grumbled and clenched his teeth.

This feeling… almost like when the hounds blasted those cities..

It passed after a few moments, and then Maddison came running down the stairs. “Hey dad, your phone is ringing!”

“My phone is…” He stopped himself. David’s phone was in his pocket, the only other thing could be…

He turned the TV on.

“Oh… shit…”

“D-dad, what do we do?”

“I’m going to get you to the police so they can take care of you, then I’ll go check on your mom. Hurry and get ready!” David shouted as he sprinted past Maddison, and up into his room.

“I should come with you right!”

“It’s too dangerous, I’ll just make sure your mom is okay, then I’ll come for you!”

Terra Firma: Link Connected
“Guardians, gather up.”

-----


Then he did exactly what he said he would. As impersonal as it was, checking on Cecily could be done via phone, and with the Police watching over the both he could fight. He may not like it, but if David’s destiny is to fight, then he’ll do it.

He had already transformed and was now holding the Guardians communicator in his hand, unsure of where to put it. He could break it, or drop it in a fight, so he wanted to put it somewhere; but the Earth didn’t give him pockets.

Or did it?

A vague idea came across his mind. He placed the communicator over the crest on his chest, and gently slid it in. It felt like someone pouring buckets of water right over him, but he could feel it still.

“This is Terra Firma, do we have a plan?”
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Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by Mercinus3
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In

Chapter 3: Caro-Kann



Time: Near Noon
Location: An unknown warehouse on the docks, Lost Haven, Maine

Ever since they had introduced themselves into Scott Hunter’s life, the Eye of Osiris began to mobilize in the city. Through the proxies of the Penose, the Haitians and other organized crime outfits, mass movement of equipment was shipped outside of the country and were stored in the warehouses across Lost Haven and Crown Ridge. While there were plans in motion elsewhere, everywhere else in North America was still needed to be prepared and the equipment coming in was certainly a part of those plans. While a lot the mobile turrets used in taking over facilities owned by the Hounds of Humanity were still in boxes waiting to be shipped to facilities across the continent, those that had been used and activated were finally operational to counter any of the known metas and heroes in the area.

Everything is going according to plan, Dullahan thought as he inspected one of the warehouses for the current shipments that were outbound. The deal he made with Richard Midas had been hugely beneficial in getting the ball rolling for getting his plans together, especially with the Daybreak prototype now scurried away to a secure location. And while there was no news on the whereabouts of Kayla Mason in the city, the Eye leader knew that it was only a matter of time before his new partner would give the results that Anhur had failed to obtain. Though the Urn of Souls is important for his plans to be acted out, it wouldn’t do well if the foundations of the plan weren’t in place. With Midas having the bracelets that would prevent the effects of the artefact from poising any risk, any plans in the future will snowball from this one.

”Soon, everything will fall on your head, Icon, he muttered under his breath, eyes looking down into a large crate. ”Everything you have ever cared for, everything you have loved. Your whole legacy will crash down on your head. Only then will your retribution be fulfilled.”

Everything in the warehouse he was in suddenly grew dark. With him knowing that the day had only begun, Dullahan began to walk out of the warehouse to see what it was. He looked on as he witnessed an asteroid was sent down towards the city. Taking everything to stock, his gaze shifted slightly to see an enormous space craft dwarfing the asteroid flying overhead. He gritted his teeth as thoughts of his plans being thwarted by a sudden space invasion and that everything he accomplished would have been for naught as his entire operation would be obliterated by the asteroid.

Those thoughts quickly dissipated as an anger swelled up in him. Though no one could really see what was happening, but the range of the leader’s eyesight saw in broad daylight the hero of Lost Haven flying up to the asteroid and attempted to slow it down. He watched as Icon, through great difficulty, manage to slow it down and eject it to space. Dullahan’s vendetta was still on, but his anger was now focused on the giant spaceship as smaller ships started to fly from it to presumably begin their assault.

“Dullahan, what are your orders.” The leader’s gaze shifted towards his bodyguard, Sobek. The man had remained vigil by his boss’s side, not wavering in emotion.

The leader’s gaze turned back towards the ship in the sky. Slowly, his right hand clenched into a fist as the atmosphere turned to dread. ”Relocate Operation Aegis resources. Put both enforcers in charge of that operation and send them to protect Midas Industries from our uninvited guests, with either of them to act as Midas’s bodyguard.”

Sobek was already on the phone, sending the message to Sekhmet and Montu to get Operation Aegis, an ongoing operation to protect important assets or people. After a moment, the bodyguard turned back to his boss. “All done. Anything else?”

”I want half of what is left to defend the facilities under our control to prevent any unwanted takeover. For the other half…” His gaze remained trained on the ship, his red eyes glowing hot with the intensity of his anger. In his clenched fist, it shifted as the ghoulish handle of the whip materialized before each of the spinal segments of the whip itself snaked out to come to life.

”The others will will head into the city itself. These invaders dared to try and ruin my divine retribution. We will send them a message that they made a fatal error in crossing me.”
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by nitemare shape
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For weeks, since the night that Icon had shown up on his doorstep looking for help, Lyger had been tracking down every lead he could find on the Eye of Osiris. Though Harry had been able to provide him with the name of the organization, he didn't have much more than that. The criminal organization had been rumored to be involved in all kinds of criminal trade allover the world, and had been suspected of toppling a number of fragile regimes all around the globe. However, much to his dismay, nothing that he had learned was verifiable.

He had heard rumors of a bounty that had been placed on the heads of heroes, and not just any hero. All heroes. Again, he heard rumors of it, but as with everything else when it came to this organization, nothing verifiable.

And then a group of street thugs tried to take his head off.

He had taken care of the thugs easily enough, but getting answers out of them were harder to come by. Nobody would say who put the bounty on the heroes. Not because they didn't know, but because they were afraid.

They were afraid of the man who put the bounty on the heads of the heroes. They were more afraid of whoever that man was, than they were of him. However, all of that seemed insignificant at the moment. The sight of a massive alien ship appearing in the skies above Earth, unleashing a volley of asteroids at the planet, potentially killing millions in the process.

Kyle Porter made his way around the back of the decommissioned post office building that stood above The Den and down the hidden elevator that led to his hidden lair. His heart was racing as the impossibly slow elevator took what seemed like an eternity to descend to the bowels of the building to The Den.

Finally, the elevator mercifully came to a stop.

“How bad?” Kyle asked as he stepped off the elevator toward the array of computers that had been set up in the middle of the room.

“It's bad.” Cassie answered, a hint of disbelief in her voice.

“How-” Kyle paused as he looked at the damage reports scrolling across the computer screens.
“-bad...” his words trailed off as he saw Kenna sitting at the computers, her eyes glued to the screens.

Berlin Germany, Moscow, an entire region of France, Hawaii, Okinawa, all gone. Among others. However, he knew that wasn't what had her sitting in a state of shock. San Francisco, her home, the city that she had been protecting for years as the vigilante Quickshadow, was gone. Destroyed when one of the asteroids impacted the city, wiping it from the face of the Earth and setting off a chain reaction of earthquakes that rocked nearly the entire West Coast.

He looked down at Kenna, Harry's granddaughter, and the woman who had been a general pain in his ass since she arrived in Crown Ridge after Harry had chosen to end his retirement and return to help Lyger with the Eye of Osiris problem. She felt that she was a better vigilante than he was, and she had proven since her arrival that she may well be. If anything, her experience had proven useful night after night. But in this moment, he didn't see a seasoned vigilante, he saw a woman who was in pain. A woman who had just lost everything, and everyone that she loved, and had been forced to witness that loss from a computer screen while over 3,000 miles away.

“Kenna...” He said, putting a hand on her shoulder just as the Guardians communicator that Iron Knight had given him pinged.

Lyger: Link Connected

“I'm coming with you.” Kenna said, finally coming out of her daze.

“No, you're not ready right now. You'll get yourself killed.” Kyle told her as he began getting into his gear.

“What does that matter? I've lost everyone.” Kenna told him, almost pleading.

“I'm not burying anyone else from your family.” Kyle said sharply. “Go to my place, get Sam and bring her here. Then be ready.”

“Ready for what?” Kenna asked, visibly angry from being sidelined.

“Someone has to watch over Crown Ridge if I don't make it.” Kyle said as he put on his mask and climbed onto his motorcycle.

“Lyger here, I'm on my way.” he said as he started the bike, and made his way up towards the street, before taking off toward Lost Haven.
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Fallenreaper
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Fallenreaper ღ~Lil' Emotional Cocktail~ღ

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Season: 3
Day: 1, Afternoon




Racheli pressed the open beer bottle to her lips. She quickly drained it in one go. Without a wobble in her step, she strolled into the kitchen and pressed her foot on the trashcan. The lid popped open. She slammed the empty, dark bottle into the growing graveyard of glass. It shattered on impact. The woman released as she turned on her heel and leaned over the sink.

She grieved for the absent relief that intoxication brought. Especially with ten plus beers in a row. Her stomach didn't twitch at the sloshing liquid inside her. Instead, she could feel the small alien nanites start to break it down and recycle it.

Her fingers gripped the sink, but she managed not to crack it. Not yet. At this point, she wanted to feel nothing. Not even the rage boiling up within her.

You should stop letting the past bother you... A familiar voice spoke.

Racheli's eyes slid to the right as she witnessed the virus positioned beside her. She hated his image. A dark-haired haired man with well-kept hair, his arms crossed over his board chest. Ice-cold eyes reflected her own like a twisted mirror.

Her jawline tightened. She made fists with her hands. A heatwave of the fury from the simple words began to wash over her. She would give anything to punch that bastard's smug face.

Why do you let your emotions control you? I know you still believe yourself to be human, but you're beyond them. Emotional attachments are not going to help you...

Racheli's fists pushed harder into the sink's edge. Fissures began to form under her strength as she struggled to rein in her temper.

"How the hell would you know?" Racheli's ice-cold cold voice asked him.

Her head turned and her eyes glared at him with enough tension it could slice through flesh. Anger rolled off of her in waves. Their eyes locked for several uncomfortable minutes. Suddenly darkness flooded and replaced daylight's rays. This caused Racheli to break eye contact first and confusion to swallow her anger.

With a primal concern, she edged toward the window. Her arm pulled back the curtains to see the skies covered by a huge rock hurtling to earth.

Caught by the end of the world shock, her desire for life sparked her anger again. A single, unfair question rattled inside her head. It pounded at her over and over. It refused to be silent.

why?

Why?

WHY?


"I won't let this happen..." Racheli growled.

She released the curtains when she spotted a blue streak rush to stop the destruction.

With a determined pace, she moved from the room to the bedroom. She snatched up her makeshift uniform. It would at least blend into the shadows and no one would mess with her thanks to shit storm in the skies.

When she wrapped up, her eyes shifted to the phone that Midas gave her. He had delivered shortly after she broke the first one. A bleak reminder of her leash. With a grudging sigh, she pocketed it then took one last glimpse out the window.

The scene had changed. Small blurry dots sped quickly toward Lost Haven. She began to activate her eyes for a closer look. The blurry shapes began to take on definition. They were spaceships.

Immediately she glared again at her virus. "Friends of yours?"

No, they aren't. If they were, they would not have bothered with the show... They would've just sent another virus like me.

"Well, fuck. At least I get a chance to blow off some steam." She grumbled then shoved her window open and plant her feet onto the fire escape. It wouldn't take her long to get to the ground.
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Hidden 8 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Dedonus
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Dedonus Kai su teknon;

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The Mandela Effect: Part 18


Aubrey Adkins | Will Grant

Four Days Before the Arlaaekan Invasion

Pacific Point, CA

It has been a couple days since I woke up in that factory and almost got blow to kingdom come. I have been trying to keep a low profile ever since then. Because my healing factor had jump started my brain and restored my memories, I was hoping it would do the same for my body. But nothing has changed. In fact, I even snuck out the other day and visited my stylist to get my hair under control. When I woke up this morning, I was shocked that it had returned to the length and volume it had when I woke up in that factory. It was almost like something, or someone, was constantly pressing the reset button. If the Son of Osiris had not placed a mental block spell on all of us, I probably would be waking up thinking I was in the right body.

For this entire time, Will and I had been binging television series on Netflix and Disney+. I can’t lie; I’m starting to feel a little stir-crazy from being cooped up in my apartment for this whole time. This wasn’t what I had imagined our little week together would be like. We had some many plans: a baseball game, a trip to the Pacific Point Zoological Gardens, some fun at the beach, even a few dinner dates. But all those plans were shredded, now that I’m trying to minimize any chance someone might put two and two together and figure out my secret identity.

Will and I were reclining on my couch, still dressed in our pajamas. Those spider-shaped yoga pants Athena tailored for me are about the only clothes that still fit well. The credits of the last episode of Criminal Minds we just watched were running when I rolled over and wrapped my arms over Will’s shoulders.

“You know what I need? Some good, ol’ natural vitamin D.”

“What about lying low?” Will asked. I noticed, when I gazed into his eyes, he looked away for just a second. I have seen him do this a couple times already since I got out of the fractured remains of the abandoned factory. Something must have been bothering him.

“That’s what the apartment’s private pool is for. Let me see what I have that will somewhat fit.”

While I was going through my closet, my mind was distracted by whatever was bothering Will. I reckoned it had to do with what happened between him and ‘me’ the night before that factory blew up. I’ll be honest, I don’t know how I feel about it myself. Sure, part of me is a little hurt. But ever since I woke up in that factory, these memories started to pop up in my mind. Not only could I start recalling pieces of what happened the night prior, but I began to remember these fragments of the lives of these other versions of myself.

However, these memories weren’t just home videos playing in my head. I had an emotional attachment to them, like I had actually lived out those events. I know that they’re false memories, but they all feel so real: the sights, the sounds, the smells, the tastes. If I didn’t know better, I would have been fooled into believing that I did all those things that night, instead of that alternate persona of mine.

After I picked out the red one, I pulled out a swimsuit kimono coverup and draped myself with it. Before I returned to my living room, I stopped at my bedroom doorway and leaned up against the doorframe.

“So, how do I look?” I asked Will as I half-heartedly struck a pose.

I proceeded to witness the cogs turning in Wills’ head. Obviously, I don’t have telepathy, but I don’t need that power to make an educated guess at what was going on in his head. He probably was panicking about what the ‘right’ answer was, if one existed. Should he say I look fantastic, despite I’m spilling out of this bikini top, or should he tell the truth? His niceness is his own undoing, as he probably doesn’t want to say something that would hurt me, yet he doesn’t want to be untruthful, either.

I gave an audible sigh before marching over to my couch.

“Okay, Will. Something is obviously bothering you. Please don’t tell me you’re still beating yourself up about a few nights ago, are you?”

“Well, that might be a part.”

Nobody would have been prepared for that kind of situation. And what’s important is you didn’t go through with it. You did the right thing.”

“I know but tell that to my guilty conscience.”

“We’re Catholic. We got that in spades.” I replied while cracking a smile, trying to keep things a bit upbeat.

“But something else is really eating away at me. I have been nagged by the thought that I’m not bringing much to this relationship: a nerdy guy with a gorgeous, blonde girlfriend.”

“Wait, you’re not trying to break up with me, are you?”

“No, no. This relationship has been a dream come true. I wouldn’t trade what we have for anything because I love you so much.”

When that four lettered l-word escaped his lips, he froze. I placed my hand onto his and then planted a kiss on his cheek. Immediately, I perceived him loose up, as if he were relieved at my reaction.

“When you were a kid, did you ever hear the parable about the kid who helped a nerdy classmate carry his books home?”

“You mean the one where the other kid later revealed he was going to commit suicide at the end of the story? Sure.”

“I’ve never told anyone this, but you were this to me back in junior high and high school. Obviously I wasn’t suicidal or anything, but knowing you helped me through a rough patch.”

Will took a deep breath before continuing his explanation.

“Back in 7th grade, my family had just moved, and I was the new kid at school. After leaving all of my childhood friends and the town I had grown up in, on top of being a moody teenager, I didn’t exactly have a good attitude towards my circumstances. Yet, when I first met you in our Confirmation class at church and I realized we had a class in common at school, things changed. Just knowing you helped me cope. If I was feeling depressed and didn’t want to drag myself out of my bed, I could tell myself that seeing you would make everything okay.”

“God, this sounds way creepier when said out loud, but I wanted to tell you how much you helped me back then. I don’t know how I could ever repay you for it.”

“Will,” I began to respond to what he had said, “You’re being too hard on yourself. Do you remember what we did on our first date?”

“We skyped,” Will answered with some hesitation, as if he were unsure where I was going with what question.

“No, no, I mean our first in-person date,” I qualified my question, “We went to mass together. How many guys would take a girl to church for their first date? Our shared faith is important to me.”

“Plus, our relationship has been a safe space for me to be myself. I don’t have to hide who I really am when I’m around you. A few months ago, the only times I would have my nullifier turned off was while playing superhero or sleeping so I wouldn’t grow sick from the device. And now, I’m chilling with you on my couch in the full glory of my driderness. I even told my parents about my powers.”

“And all of this happened because I accidentally slipped up and revealed my powers to you. You are one of the few people who know my identity, but probably the only one around whom I can be myself. All the superheroes hide behind their masks and capes. My college friends and roommates weren’t prepared for something like this. And I wouldn’t be surprised if my parents are just starting to figure what all of this is. This is one aspect of my life that I don’t have to hide something.”

After I had divulged my own feelings about our relationship, we sat there in silence for a few seconds. I then leaned in towards Will and he followed in suit until our faces were inches away from each other. Our lips soon met, and we kissed for a couple seconds.
“I’m glad we had this little talk,” Will told me after we parted lips.

“Then how about giving me a hand with this suntan lotion?” I suggested as I pulled out a bottle of sunscreen from the pocket of my coverup.

“Wait, why do you need sunscreen? Won’t your healing factor protect your skin from sun damage?”

“You know that, and I know that, but everyone else doesn’t. Plus, sunburn still sucks, even if my healing factor would still pretty much zap it instantly once I deactivate my nullifier.”

I allowed my coverup to slip off my shoulders and fall onto the couch. After I turned my back towards Will, I threw my hair over my shoulder to get it out of the way for Will. I squirted some of the lotion onto my palm and then handed the tube over my shoulder to Will.

“Could you get my back for me?” I asked as I rubbed the lotion together in my hands before applying it to my thigh.

“Sure,” Will answered. He passed the suntan lotion bottle back over my shoulder after he had squeezed out some of the lotion onto his palm.

“You know, if you pull the knot out of the back of my top, it would make your job a little easier,” I suggested when I felt his hands try to rub the lotion underneath the ties of my bikini top.

“No no, this is fine.”

“Don’t you want to do the front, too?” I told Will as I looked over my shoulder and grinned at him. Once I had given him my two cents, I turned my attention back to apply more of the lotion. While I was rubbing the sunscreen on my arm, I suddenly heard a soft twang come from behind my back and I felt strings of my top become loose around my ribcage as it fell into my lap.



I basked in the sun beside the Viera apartment’s pool. Situated on a poolside lounge chair, I was reclining on my stomach as I took in the sun’s rays. Today was a nearly perfect day: sunny with just enough of a breeze to prevent the heat from being unbearable, while not being too chilly for relaxing beside the pool.

I was listening to one of the several playlists of music I had compiled over the past several months on my phone. Sometimes, the best way to relax is to clear your mind and push aside your troubles. I obviously don’t mean forever, but just a few hours of not worrying about supervillains, magic, and world-ending crises does wonders for one’s mental health.

As I continued to take advantage of this break from my hectic life, I noticed someone was walking towards me from out of the corner of my eye. I tilted my head in that direction and saw Emily was standing there. When I noticed she was starting to ask me something, I pulled out one of my earbuds so I could hear her.

“Anyone sitting here?” Emily asked as she gestured to the pool chair just adjacent to mine.

“Will just went back inside to grab us some water, but you can join me while we wait for him. If you want anything, I can text him to bring it,” I suggested as I pulled out the other earbud and tapped the pause button on my phone. I then reached behind my back and retied the strings to my bikini top.

“No, no. I’m fine. I just thought we should,” Emily politely turned down my offer before pausing in mid-sentence, “talk.”
“Talk?” I asked, although we both knew what she meant. Back when the Hounds of Humanity were still at large, we both discovered that we were metahumans. Or that’s what I thought when it happened. Will had mentioned that Emily was also one of the affected, so maybe this wasn’t something normal for her, either. Emily and I had been meaning to clear this whole thing up, but there never seemed to be a right time for it.

“Sure, although I’m not sure how much we actually need to discuss as I’m guessing whatever made you, um—” I paused for a moment as I looked around. Once I had double checked that nobody could be eavesdropping on us, I continued. I didn’t want to out her. “super is the same thing that made me look like this.”

I then gestured down over the entirety of my body after I had rolled onto my side and propped myself up on my elbow. I then started to sit up when Emily responded.

“Yes and no,” she said, “While my Pinup persona did arise exactly when people began to turn into alternate versions of themselves from parallel realities, my normal self, if you could call it that, isn’t quite normal either.”

Emily then went on to explain how she was alive back in the 40’s, when she was a lab assistant for a prominent medical researcher who was working on what was essentially a super-soldier formula for the Allies during World War II. She admitted how, because all of her attempts to break into Hollywood had been failures, her fears over her dreams being crushed by reality had tempted her into taking an unauthorized dose of the serum after the doctor slipped up and compared it to the Fountain of Youth.

Although the serum rendered Emily as ageless, it had several side effects. Although she ceased from getting older and she needed less sleep and food, her body was also slower at healing from injuries. But the worse side effect was her ability to cause people’s fears to become physical manifestations. She received the nickname Pinup not for her figure, but because she had triggered sporadic incidents of living nightmares over a three day period in Los Angeles back in the 40’s, causing people to ironically say that Emily would make your dreams come true. And not in a good way.

While whatever secret spy organization that was operating back then covered the whole thing up as a domestic attack by the Nazis, Emily retreated into seclusion, as her powers were too dangerous for her living in such a densely populated area. Because Emily looked perpetually in her early 20’s and her powers would sometimes blow her cover, she would have to periodically relocate and fabricate a new identity every couple of decades. Although with each passing decade she gained more control over her powers, she still longed for a cure.

It was just last year when her one true confidant, a certain Dr. Walter Kennedy, who had been researching a cure, finally made a breakthrough. She obtained a new chance at life. She no longer had to worry about her powers going awry and causing harm to the innocent. Not only did Dr Kennedy discover a way to remove her powers, but also to wipe her memories so she could live a new life without all the baggage of the decades she had suffered through. With a clean slate, they fabricated a new identity, with which she could live out her original dreams, although slightly altered for the times.

“Then how do you remember all of this if you had your memories wiped?”

“Probably a combination of whatever turned me into a different version of myself and what that Egyptian bird guy did to get my mind back to normal rebooted my old memories, though I can’t be sure.”

“Well, if that doctor did it once, I’m sure he can do it again.”

Emily sighed when I mentioned Dr. Kennedy.

“There might be a little problem. Walter was a professor at the Lost Haven University. We didn’t keep in touch when I got my new life, as that would defeat the purpose of what we were doing, but ever since the Hounds happened...” Emily said as her words trailed off. She was referring to the attack the Hounds of Humanity launched against the Lost Haven University just a few months ago. Because she had been out of touch with him, she had no idea whether he survived that terrorist attack.

“Hey, we’ll figure something out,” I told Emily to try to lift up her spirits, “What else are friends, for, right?”

“For as long as I can remember, I have always closed myself off from people out of fear of what could happen if something went wrong. But I’m glad I opened up to you.”

At that moment, Will had returned to the pool area and walked over to where I had been sunbathing. He was holding two glasses of water. The condensation dripping from the sides of the cups showed how icy cold the water was. But when he noticed that Emily was sitting there next to Aubrey and had heard the tail end of our conversation, he stopped next to Aubrey and spoke.

“I’m not interrupting anything, am I?”

“Nope,” Emily replied before I could say anything. “I was actually just leaving. Got some errands to run, things to do. See you two later.”
And with that, Emily stood up from the nearby reclining chair and started to stroll away towards the pool area’s exit gate. Meanwhile, Will handed me one of the glasses of ice-cold water. I took a sip and the chilly liquid felt wonderful running down my throat, especially on a summer day like today.

“She does know I’m aware of her powers, too, right?” Will asked as he rearranged one of the nearby umbrellas to provide shade for his chair.

“Oh yes, she does. I’m sure she didn’t want to eat into our time together.”
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Dezuel
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Dezuel Broke out of limbo

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Verge


Present day

Pacific Point, CA

The happy chirping of birds rung in the ears of a young man, who were dressed in a tan suit. He sat perched upon a large boulder overlooking the wilderness outside of Los Angeles. The sun beamed with a light that could contend with that of his own, at least that was what he believed. Without that shining light in the sky, the world would be a cold and dead place devoid of any life. A frozen wasteland. He had to view himself akin to that of the sun, a preserver of the natural world, a protector of life itself. A line of ants made their way below the boulder he sat upon, he had watched them for hours, how they were able despite their size to carry such large things over their backs and with their comerades helping them, all serving under their queen. There had been small mammals passing by every now and then aswell, some foraging for food, others being preyed upon by snakes or other carnivores. But such events were common in the natural world, there would always be something chasing you, even if you were an apex predator you would someday be overcome by something else as evolution is constant. Just like he had done. Humankind had long been the apex predator of the world, constantly pressing it's borders and consuming what stood in their path. Like the mammoths or the dodo bird who were brought to extinction because of them.

While there had been things which humankind had created that were of good, it could not excuse the bad things to the young man. Music was a thing he enjoyed, sweet melodies of various kinds. But no matter how sweet a melody is, eventually it comes to an end and the reality once again makes itself known. The ever hungry darkness, which would threaten to devour everything. Some humans sought refuge in music, books, games or in tales and stories to occupy their minds. Others found their aid in drinking, to momentarily dullen the present and to cloud the past creeping up behind. The thing you could never change, the desire so many felt that if they could only turn back time they would make things differently. But what if they could not? What if they would make the same mistakes again?

As he pondered on human nature as he knew it, he was brought out of his thoughts by the silence of the birds, the small mammals running away and then a rumbling in the earth. Something was happening. The young man, Milliard, rose up on the boulder to which he had sat upon to look what was causing it. In the distance a large wave of water... no... a wave of death was approaching the city of Los Angeles. Was this a sign that humankind had to perish? He had felt it before though, the urge to bring their destruction... to finally sever the chain of on-going wars that had plagued the world for so long.

"The earth is screaming... it wants me to grant it's wish." He said softly, looking to the sky above momentarily before getting up on his feet. The young man proceeded to lift his right hand to his chest, where a bright light began to form within his palm and soon entered into his very form. Out of the young man's back rose spectral looking, wings of golden light and he began to hover away from his boulder up into the air, his gaze towards the city of Los Angeles in the distance. Milliard soon after flew off into the air with remarkable speed, raising himself in elevation mid-flight to avoid disturbing the animal life on the ground. Upon reaching the city's border he could see the large wave of water clash against what seemed to be a shield, a supernaturally created shield by the looks of it, unless the humans had technology to have such a thing. The barrier had repelled the wave, but the surrounding area outside of the city had still been subject to the relentless force of the water.

What had caused this to happen? And who or what had raised that shield in defense of the city? That place were in no need of saving. The young man hovered above the barrier, searching for who or what was projecting it. Perhaps he could find someone who could explain what had just happened, for the damage done to the area surrounding the city. All the forestation and wildlife that had perished because of it and that barrier. Someone had to pay. Dearly. Justice must be done.

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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Mercinus3
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Mercinus3

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Somewhere in Lost Haven…


It didn’t take long for The Eye of Osiris to mobilize on Dullahan’s orders. Each of the warehouses that were either in direct Eye control or controlled by proxies armed themselves with weapons that were common to see with security or gangs as to not draw suspicion. The only thing that they did deploy was the mobile turret platforms, with their cannons aimed towards the sky to fire on anything that came close. Whatever the aliens wanted; they certainly will face fierce resistance from the organization.

While the defense of the warehouses and docks were happening, hundreds upon hundreds of other personnel were gathering near convoy trucks. As a part of Operation Aegis, the men and women were tasked with the protection of whatever Dullahan saw fit. If that meant that they would have to lay down their lives in order to complete their task, then they did just that. The Eye leader knew this and only tasked some of the most loyal to the operation.

As each truck set off to their destination of Midas Industries, a few of the soldiers were placing various equipment into supply trucks to be stored in the company’s facilities until the threat had passed. Most of them were large boxes, lifted into trucks by crane, were non-descript wooden crates that were simply labeled ‘PROJECT APEX WARRIOR’.

“Alright, that should be most of the project now boxed up and sent over to Midas Industries for storage,” one of the soldiers barked out, tapping the truck heavily to send it on its way. “I want a small group of us to start making their way to the storage facility to help with unloading the test subjects. The rest of you, I want the last of the project on that truck by…”

Crack!

The building shook as some of the floors partially collapsed on itself. While the asteroid Icon had pushed away was removed safely, it didn’t stop segments of it shearing from it and rain down onto the city. As the rubble tumbled off the building, the leader turned to his men.

“Double time! I want the subjects on that truck pronto!”

On command, a group of 15 people entered the building, some of them controlling mobile platforms designed to carry the crates out of the building.
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Hound55
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Hound55 Create-A-Hero RPG GM, Blue Bringer of BWAHAHA!

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The old man’s story completed; the pair sat there in silent contemplation.

“So that’s it?” The man in black asked. The long tale of alien artefacts, heroes and villains, death and domestic terrorism seemingly not enough for him. “That all of it?”

“That’s the all of it.” The old former hero confirmed.

“AAAAAAAAaaaaaaaAAAARGH!” Dennis charged around the corner from the kitchen brandishing the Golden Rod, levelling it at their uninvited guest.

“Hmph… Pointing a weapon at me. If only that had occurred to all of those other violent sociopaths who have wanted to get rid of me over the years… The Vigilante dripped with sarcasm.

“I don’t care what he did! Or what crazy made up bullshit he told you! You’re not taking him! I’ll drop you where you stand! --Sit! --I’ll put you down on the place where you are!” Dennis fumbled over his threats, his grandpa’s eyes almost rolled to the floor.

“You’re not going to shoot me.” The Vigilante uttered plainly, with a completely level tone and not moving an inch.

“Yes, I will!”

“No. You won’t.” He gave a clipped reply, his confident tone still not wavering at all. “You’re more likely to shoot your grandfather or yourself than me. But you’re not going to do that either.”

“Why? Give me one reason! I’ll—”

“I’ll give you three.” He turned to glance at the older hero to ensure he wasn’t making any kind of move, before returning his line of sight to the younger man wielding the powerful energy weapon. “Reason one, because you don’t even know if that thing can work on me. There’s a reason it didn’t prevent your identity from being revealed to me. Magic gets kind of—hinky—around me. Even alien magic, as it turns out. As far as you know, all firing that thing at me at me will accomplish is pissing me off. Which is reason 1b… or two, if you’re not counting along yourself…” The Vigilante got to his feet and started to take the inexperienced hero’s space, still talking rapidly and keeping him off balance. “…Two, you really don’t want to piss me off. I’m not some two bit street thug, bank robber or random hellspawn demon. You’re trapped in an enclosed space with me – which incidentally is part of 1c or three if you’re still not following – and I assure you, no matter what kind of training ‘Gramps’ over there gave you…”

“Hey… Hey, watch it... Move back now…” Dennis feebly countered, but the Vigilante was in full swing. It wasn't going to happen, even unarmed, the experienced vigilante was already in the process of taking full control of the situation.

“…no matter how hard he worked you. You’ve never seen anyone move like me.” His brow dropped into a scowl, and he was smiling a wide leer at the younger man. “Which takes us to three, you’re standing in close quarters. In your grandfather’s house. You fire that thing off in here and take out a load bearing wall, you’re liable to bring the damn roof down on ol’ Pops… and I can’t have that. Because I came here for the truth and he’s been giving that to me, and still has some to go. And since you’re being so polite and letting me talk, I’ll throw in a fourth reason for free...”

“Wha—”

“--Because you’re not holding the damn thing anymore!” The Vigilante looped a length of material - the couch protector from the chair he’d previously been sitting in - around the younger man’s wrist, and with a single flourish ripped the Golden Rod out of his grasp, and tossed the device along with the balled up material into the corner of the room.

Dennis watched the Golden Rod fly out of his grasp in horror.

“Well, I’ve seen enough.” Said the old man from his chair. “You took it from him. Far as I’m concerned, you should keep it.”

Dennis looked aghast, unable to even formulate words. He ran out the back door to his own place.

The Vigilante turned to hold out a hand to stop the younger man, but he was already gone, so he turned back to the older man. He pulled his balaklava off of the bridge of his nose in frustration. This family was stress and anxiety given human form.

“I can’t. That wasn’t just some bullshit line. The same reason it didn’t keep your identity safe from me is the same reason I probably wouldn’t be able to get it to work. Far as I can tell it works from a combination of alien technology and alien magic.” He explained.

“Oh…” Was all the older man was able to muster as a reply. They both looked to the door the younger Aquilifer had left through.

“That’s really all you were left to work with?” The Vigilante growled.

“Yep.” Alan Coghlan responded with deep resignation. The old man clearly very economic with his words.

“I guess we’re lucky you didn’t gift-wrap those Pax Metahumana nutbags an entire meta-nuke arsenal to carpetbomb the whole fucking world…”




The Vigilante shuffled through discarded beer cans, this time in someone else’s house. It wasn’t as pleasant a change as you might think.

“Look… just… Leave me alone for now.” Came a low mumbling. “I’m fine. Just not at the mo-- Oh. It’s you.”

“It’s me.” The Vigilante confirmed.

“What? Come to kick me out and take my home too, huh?” Came the sullen response.

“Well, the place has got a Hell of a view from the back stoop… He pointed to the back door which still hung directly over the cliff face, overlooking much of Lost Haven.

The younger man turned to snap at him with a heavy scowl crossing his face.

“--I was joking.” The flat monotone from the voice modulator gave away nothing.

“You didn’t seem like the kind to joke around.

“Yeah, well… The moment seemed to call for it.”

The pair sat in uncomfortable silence for several seconds. Birds tweeted in the bright light of day from outside of Dennis’ place.

“I’m not taking the thing from you. I wasn’t lying about my deal with magic. I almost certainly wouldn’t be able to get the thing to work-- Hell, if the thing wouldn’t immediately break if I even trie--”

“That’s not the point though, is it? He doesn’t even know you. Hell, he doesn’t even trust the hero-types who dress themselves all in black. I’ve heard him say stuff about you before...” The Vigilante raised his brow behind the mask in moderate surprise. “...when you were on the TV.”

Isaac remembered the regrettable public display he made during D-Day, and the press van which had been filming him and grunted his distaste at the memory.

“But it's not even just that. He knows you five seconds, someone he previously distrusts, and immediately hands it over to you. Without even asking. I try to keep you from hauling him off to prison for... whatever he’s supposedly done--”

“Aiding and abetting terrorists.” The Vigilante flatly replied.

“--aiding and abetting terrorists. Dennis gestured at the Vigilante for his answer. “And he gives some ridiculous story that’s obviously never going to believed by anybody--

“Actually, it's the truth.”

“--that’s actually the truth and was completely believed by you… Wait, what?”

“Your grandfather was telling the truth. At least as far as I can tell… But that sounds like something for the pair of you to work out between yourselves later. He was definitely keeping that from you. Regardless how it affects the pair of you, I don’t plan on hauling him off to prison… there’s too much to prepare for, now that we know these aliens are coming to invade.”

Dennis’ eyes glazed over. “I’m sorry… How much money are you expecting to receive back from Nigerian royalty? You believe his story? I don’t even believe his story. You believe in aliens???”

“I believe in THESE aliens, yes.”

“Oh-kaaaay. Well then, I guess I’m sorry I was pointing the Golden Rod at you then.”

“It’s OK. You weren’t going to shoot me.”

Dennis scowled at the other arrogant hero. “So you said…” He muttered.

“And as for your grandfather trying to give me your gig, I wouldn’t worry too much about that either. You’re thinking about that all wrong.”

“Oh I am, am I?”

“You’re thinking of it as a gift, which he bestows on people. That’s not how he’s thinking about it. He’s thinking about it like… I don’t know? A responsibility? A debt? It’s hard to put into words. He’s taken out a mortgage on the whole world, and it's coming up time to pay the piper.”

Dennis looked at him blankly. He didn’t care for how familiar this man seemed to already view himself as being with his family’s dynamics, but as he spoke about the weight of debt, this man almost seemed to be coming from an empathic place - one where he felt he could actually relate.

“Your brother actually wanted this life, didn’t he? Same with the other guy.”

Dennis sat in total introspection and an answer fell from his lips almost involuntarily as he followed the Vigilante’s logic. “Yeah…”

“So he’s already lost one grandson who actually WANTED to be part of this lifestyle. Now he’s had to thrust it on his OTHER GRANDSON who never asked for it, right when these aliens are about to ‘close the deal’. Aliens who he has seen and experienced obliterate EVERY opposing force they’ve ever stood against. And you’re going to blame him if he tries to throw it at someone else he sees as possibly being capable of doing the job who happens to show up at the 11th hour?”

Dennis wasn’t sure, so he sat in silence.

“Let me ask you this… Have you made it clear lately that you actually want this? Or are you just mad that he’d give something you feel you’re owed away without even asking?”[/color]

Dennis thought about this as well. The pair sat and shared another extended awkward silence.

“I think I had better have a long discussion with the old man…

“I think you had.” The Vigilante stood up, his feet dropping back through the metal detritus that covered the younger man’s floor. He turned and gave Dennis a disappointed look through the balaklava, the kind he normally got from his grandfather.

“They’re not all from now… I’d actually stopped drinking.” The younger man promised.

”Is that supposed to be better?” The older hero asked, wading through a sea of metal cans.

“Isn’t it..?”




The Vigilante started to walk back down the driveway, contemplating the meaning of everything he’d learned on this day and how best to respond to the new information, when he was met once more by the older man scurrying to see him one last time before he left.

“Wait… wait…” The old man hissed hoarsely.

“What is it?”

The old man presented a box, and gestured for the Vigilante to keep his voice down. “I know what you said about the Rod and magic, but I can still give you something to help. Just don’t use them publicly until… you-know-when. The Golden Rod, it sends back intel, you see?

The Vigilante opened the box and saw a pair of metal… things. He didn’t know what he was looking at or even how to describe them. He furrowed his brow.

“What are these?” He tried to whisper, his voice still coming through the modulator uncomfortably loud.

“They’re Gravity gauntlets. I’ve been reverse-engineering the technology of the Golden Rod for years. Whilst the Rod presumably is powered initially by some kind of alien magic combined with their tech, these are battery powered.

The Vigilante opened the box again and saw how they’d be able to fit over his gloves.

“Ah.”

“They’re currently pre-set to 10x regular G-force, but they’re adjustable. Hit the button as you’re throwing a punch or throwing something and it artificially affects the mass being thrown. If you press the button just normally, it’ll just feel like you’re carrying something heavy. Be careful though, it’s easy to hurt yourself… separate your shoulder.”

“Speaking from experience?”

“Well, I wasn’t as young as I used to be...

“Hmm… Well, I gotta go. It looks like you’ve got something else painful to sort out, out back. He thumbed back at Dennis’ house behind the main home. “Or you’re going to have separated something else.”

The pair parted ways, with the old man's head cowed at the thought of the task ahead.
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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Sade Kingfisher
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Sade Kingfisher

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It was moments after awakening from darkness to an alarming violence of noise and senses, his mind was reeling from the events of mere seconds, yet he was awake. Every cell in his body is alive with the fire of life and he could feel every single one of them tingling in response to the universe around him. The very fire of creation was burning in his blood, a furnace of flesh was desperately trying to explode out of him as he lived and breathed.

Gulping delicious breaths of air he felt his lungs change to accomodate more and more of it, his heart beat louder and stronger, for a brief moment his ears rang with the sound of rushing blood through the sensitive inner veins. Blowing winds through the gaping hole in the wall touched him with a disquieting heat as the flames outside blew hot wind, but his skin thickened against it and he felt it no more.

"Alive!" In a shout of pure ecstasy he cried straight through to the heavens. The preconception of his identity dissolving in this moment, he was not simply a mundane and hardly special man anymore, he was at the top of the food chain. There prickled in the back of his mind that thought, the top of the food chain. Not even noticing the change his eyes had grown and rolled in their sockets to seek out every little detail of the room he found himself in.

On the side of the pod he saw it. Project Apex Warrior in emboldened all capitalized letters. The very pod that he himself had come from, attached to the wall by still connected tubing of what could only be assumed as the chemical sedative that had kept him unconscious for all this time.

His eyes had already scanned and then his brain processed moments later. There were unhooked connection tubing just like the one he'd just come from, except there were no pods. The very last one was his own, still connected.

Suddenly to his nose burst the scent of fresh spore, the smell of another human's tracks. They'd been here moments before, the wheels of their gurney had left behind small tracts of black skidmarks on the floor leading out. Its repeated passage was marked by repeated and overlapping marks.

No thought passed through his head as his muscles exploded with power, shooting him through the paneling in the roof and into the overhanging inner workings of the building. The din of approaching footsteps reached his ears as he scrambled through the tight passages meant only to be accessed for maintenance. The tightness of his movement becoming lessened as his body elongated and grew thinner to more easily slide through.

Whoever had been moving pods was going to move him, and he had no intent of being moved against his will ever again.

No one would ever hurt him again.

@Mercinus3
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Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by Perse
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Perse

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Lost Haven, Maine

The best thing about holiday homes, in Louisa's mind, would be the fact that they are more often than not only in use for a few months a year. This left homes such as the monster of a chalet with an ocean view in Lost Haven all open and free for whoever might wander across it. Of course there had been locks and security alarms but those were easily fixed with a few little spells here and there.

Now Louisa found herself in lapping up the sun's rays as she lazily swam through her own private pool. With no worries of onlookers, she backstroked through the warm water looking up at the beautiful blue sky, naked as the day she was born. This was the exact kind of private luxury that she could get used to.

Stopping in the middle of the pool, she let herself float with her arms and legs steadying her out. Closing her eyes to the bright light and listening to all the sounds of the nature around her, her bright green hair flowed around her peaceful face.

Than her warm light was suddenly blocked out. Opening her eyes in annoyance by the expected clouds or possible airplane, she instead saw something else hurtling towards her. There right above her was a space rock at least five times the size of the home she had been squatting in.

"Well shit..." Louisa said to no one in particular. Trying to take charge of the situation she started to speak the words, "Where there was relaxing in water and nakedness, there is now time for one to be dressed and on land with readiness."

Floating out of the pool, her body dripped the pool water off before there was a rush of air and she was on the ground around the pool. Now dressed in her usual black jeans and bright neon orange crop hoodie, she looked back up to the sky, her hand sheltering her eyes from any sun light that managed to get past the meteor shard.

Taking a deep breath she started to spiel her words out,
"This home is now my castle, so let us not deal with this hassle.
Create instead a large barrier, around me and this whole area.
Let us be safe from all that is incoming, and all that might be unbecoming"


A neon green barrier shot from the centre of her chest and went upwards until it was 50 feet in the air above her and the chalet. Then it started to move outwards along the sides of the area, making a bubble of green sheen that covered not only the house but the close area in a protective shield.

Smiling as the bubble formed around her, Louisa moved her feet unsurely towards a pool chair and than sat down with a large sigh of relief. Looking back up at the sky, she saw the meteor come ever closer and then when it looked like all might have been over for her, it shattered right on her green bubble with a ear shattering sound. Ripples ran along the top as the meteor slid across the shield and towards the sides of her new living area. Finally land with an earth crumbling noise, the forest around the house was flattened as Louisa couldn't help but stare at the destruction with her mouth agape.
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Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by nitemare shape
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nitemare shape GM of Create A Hero and Star Wars: Legacies

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A sense of dread began mounting within Icon as he stood in the street watching as the smaller ships raced toward the city. Moments before, he had been in orbit above the Earth having barely preventing the massive space rock from flattening Lost Haven. While he was relieved to have been able to save his city, he also saw first hand the wholesale destruction that these invaders had wrought upon the world.

Not here you don't. Icon thought to himself as he watched the swarm of ships racing toward Lost Haven.

“Officer, get these people off the street.” Icon said to a police officer standing close by. “I'll cover you, just get them to safety.” He finished as he left the ground to meet the ships head on.

The city went by in a blur as Icon raced toward the descending ships. He was still reeling from the sheer destruction that he had witnessed on a global scale, and was determined to prevent these invaders from destroying his home. He gritted his teeth as he accelerated toward the alien fighters. As he got closer to the ships and he finally got a good look at them, they reminded him of a Klingon Bird of Prey from the old Star Trek movies, except they were matte black and sleeker. They were also small, only large enough for a single pilot. Suddenly, there was a flash of green-white light as the smaller vessels opened fire on him. He did a barrel roll, avoiding several energy bolts as he approached the incoming vessels. However, before he could reach the mass of ships, they showed just how maneuverable they were, breaking formation and going in every direction, firing their laser weapons almost indiscriminately as they buzzed the city below.

“Guardians, Gather up.” Came the call from the Guardians com device that Arthur had given him. Icon winced at the words as he banked hard to the left as he went after one of the ships that had begun firing its weapons into apartment buildings below.

“I've already got boots on the ground....So to speak. Get here as quick as you can, there's too many of them.” Icon said as he caught up to the ship, balled up his fist and hurled an energy blast at the alien vessel, sending it careening into an abandoned construction site below. It was then that he saw more ships descending toward the city. These ships were larger than the fighters that had been attacking Lost Haven/ They were square and bulky, almost like what he could imagine the military of the future might use to deploy troops into an active war zone.When he realized that they were not attacking but landing, he knew that is exactly what they were.

“Guardians, we have troop carriers landing all over the city, we have to try and contain them before they can cause too much damage.” He said as he flew toward one of the carriers to head off the invaders.
Hidden 8 mos ago Post by VATROU
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VATROU The Barron

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Somewhere just outside Fairbanks Alaska

The skies blackened, the sun engulfed behind a massive ship wrecking havoc on the tides and raining meteors from the heavens. Scores of Humanity watched in abject horror as their certain doom was laid bare for all to see, no Icon of hope to save them at least not all of them. Waves crashed down tearing apart docks and drowning the mightiest of seafaring vessels, the storms formed in these times would carve new craters in the Earth below and our heroes stood in complete shock while a preliminary invasion force began touching down in key parts of the world. War had come to this tiny planet a force unknown and uncontested by even the strongest races in the galaxy.

A mangled hand reached for a unwieldy gun pulsing with golden veins of energy his memories recalled a time when he was war incarnate, they were the Deathless Plague that engulfed the galaxy they conquered planets consumed worlds and converted the dead to their cause; the Arlaaekan armada changed that, they unleashed a technological virus that cripped their reproduction facilities and almost stopped their own cellular regeneration. That force swept through their hive worlds slaughtering them down to their last man, all but one. The being known as Chimerian stepped forward flipping switches on his repeating lase gun and tossed a thick book bound in leather on his bed, it wasn’t much but it held his history the memories of his people so that they should be remembered as he marched to his grave.

Meanwhile in the same state fires raged as a hooved figure rushed between buildings carrying people to safety crashing and tearing down rubble as he began his rescue of nearly 300,000 civilians. Anchorage had become a war zone and although clearly not a major focus suffered greatly from orbital bombardments and laser cannons from the sky. His hand reached out to a child seeking shelter under his bed as the house caved in around him the boy laid his eyes upon the man in the red jacket with large antlers holding a support beam that would have otherwise fallen and crushed the young lad. “It’s alright lad, Mountie Moose is here.”

In other parts of the world people were not soo lucky, a tsunami had engulfed most of the Philippines and the activity had begun to awake dormant volcanoes around the ring of fire most thankfully were underwater although Japan had declared an emergency statement should Mount Fuji erupt. New York with the help of its mayor and mechanized police task force helped keep the invaders at bay until more metas could join the fray notably of which was the Blue Beagle in his spitfire and former villain now retiree Lewdtato mangling ships with his immense brain power alongside the blue pup.



Pacific Point was already in the midst of a full blown crisis with a wave of water crashing down upon the city only having been stopped by a forcefield of some kind, as Eva sat eating fried fish and chips she briefly wondered if Briley had activated the Aegis Bulwark. She immediately dipped her fries in some fresh tartar sauce as the water pushed back against the defensive field as other customers panicked and fled. ”Can’t even bloody enjoy a meal, what’s next aliens. Ha!”

Eva laughed as she was fairly sure whomever had this disaster fully under control or she did until she noticed the bow of a ship peaking through the clouds. ”God fu^&ing save the Queen and all that jazz.”

The servers had all abandoned all save the chef and owner as he packed a few papers into a sack and rushed towards the door, Eva following behind him both stepping out onto the street as ships came from large bulky frigates. ”What in the hell.” Eva spoke standing alone as people rushed to safety.



With all this damage going on Briley began contacting several heroes around the city. Something had to be done, a massive lightning bolt crackled through the sky and several alien ships took serious damage.



The Gomorrah sat locked down as metal doors sealed off the outside and magic wards began deflecting enemy fire off the building. All the while Barron sat in his hot tub drinking a fine wine. ”It has to be aliens. Honey!” Barron called out to his wife who was busy picking through the closet. ”Did you find my suit, we seem to have eager guests in need of a proper ass beating.”
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Hidden 8 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by Klumsykrow357
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Klumsykrow357

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Alejandro lay on the bed inside his trailer, snoring from among the beer cans left over from mere hours previous. His blanket was haphazardly draped across his lower half which left his chest bare to the quiet morning air. It had been a long night of checking leads for whatever was causing rapid mutations in people and Alejandro had only decided to call it a night after a shake-down had turned into a shoot-out. Muerte might be bullet proof but as far as everyone knew Alejandro was not and had to bail when bullets went flying. Some day off that turned out to be! Finding a bullet hole in his favorite shirt had been the last straw, causing him to pick up a few cases of beer and go home. With his healing factor he didn't stay drunk for long, but it did still work on him. It worked so well in fact that the initial screams of panic only made him turn over and cover his face. It wasn't until his phone buzzed off of the counter and smacked into his forehead that he opened his eyes, but only enough to check the caller I.D. A picture of a cute Latina teen popped up making him smile before answering the phone.

"Buenos dias Hermanita-" but he didn't get to the rest of it as her panicked soprano cut through the phone in a blur of Spanish.

"Brother! Where are you?! Are you still in Lost Haven?"

Alejandro sat bolt upright, sending cans clattering everywhere across the floor. "What's wrong? What is happening?"

"Ai! Look up at the sky idiot, there are f*cking aliens up there! It's all over the world man, they're wiping out whole cities!"

"Is Papa with you?" Alejandro asked quickly as he leapt out of bed and started towards a cabinet on the far side of the trailer. Ignoring the lock on it, Alejandro tore the door from its hinges and pulled out his outfit and mask.

"Yes Papa is here, he-" A gritty baritone cut her off. "Is that Al? Give me the phone. Al?"

"Yes Papa I'm here."

"I'm taking your sister to the bunker, rest of the Raiders are supposed to meet us there. Get yer @ss out of the city. We'll meet you there."

Alejandro fell silent as he wiggled into his pants. He knew he couldn't leave Lost Haven, not until he made sure that Jacque and Jesus were ok. He had just started putting on his boots when his dad translated the pause and growled into the phone.

"No heroics. You can't stop a god damned alien ship boy. You get that P.O.S. trailer moving our way now! We ain't got time to leave the door open for your dumb @ss."

Alejandro knew that the angry tone was primarily caused by worry. As gruff and criminal as he was, Nick Grange loved his kids. The only problem was that he didn't care about ANYTHING outside of the gang. Arguably, Alejandro was much the same way but with a few exceptions; Jacque, Jesus, and in some measure Rosco. There was also Muerte. His secret project to whip the streets into shape and forge his own territory had become more and more thrilling as he gained notoriety, even more so after the Hounds had been hunting down metas. Finding and killing them had become almost a favored hobby. None of this was known to his dad or sister though, but after today that would have to change. After getting his shirt and jacket on, Alejandro finally responded.

"Don't worry Papa, I'll talk to you later. Keep an eye on Anna."

"Boy don't you dare hang-" *click*

Alejandro sighed and put his phone in his pocket before grabbing his mask. He knew he'd pay for this later, but for now he had things to do. He walked to the back door of his trailer, put on his mask, then stepped out to get on his bike. He activated the comms system in his mask, and sped off towards where most of the chaos seemed to be originating. He hadn't even made it 2 blocks before the ear piece crackled to life.

"Are you there? Oh please respond!" Jesus's trembling falsetto spoke in his ear.

"I'm here Jesus, are you safe?"

"Me? Yeah I think so. All the chaos is towards the center of town. Icon just stopped a meteor from smashing into the city!"

"Where's Jacque?"

"Her locator's at her place, but she isn't resp- Wait she's calling, I'll patch her through."

"WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON?!" Jacque's contralto blasted in his ear, "The whole world is going to sh*t. You know there are aliens? In the goddamned sky!"

Alejandro took the opportunity while she was taking a breath to interject. "Get to Jesus's. And tell your girls to find shelter fast. This is going to get ugly."

"And what the f*ck are YOU going to be doing muchacho?! Fly up there and shake your @ss at them? You're gonna get pummeled. You mess up that face and you won't be able to work the streets anymore."

Alejandro couldn't help but give a small smile. They'd been broken up for months but she still got worried about him, and it still made him feel warm and fuzzy. "I'll make sure my @ss and face make it out intact, just for you Melocotona," he said with a slight chuckle.

"DON'T YOU MELOCOTONA ME YOU CRAZY SON OF A-"

He disconnected the line, knowing he'd pay for that one too. "Jesus?"

"Yeah?" came the meek response.

"Keep her safe..."

"Yeah...I will. Y-You sure about this?"

"No, but I'm going to try anyway. I'll see you on the flip side."

The comm went silent, and Alejandro focused on driving towards the center of the city in search of any other metas he could group up with. He kept glancing up at the sky as he went, more fascinated than horrified by the presence of the space craft, and tried to track the trajectories of the smaller ships. They'd have to get too close for comfort for him to do much but he could at least work out their tactics and maneuvers for now.
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