Officially recorded as Terminus Energy Mutation Syndrome (TEMS) by AEGIS, ASTRO Labs and the Freedom League, the empowerment of humanity by the energies of the Terminus is more commonly known as Terminus Babies, or T-Babies. It is most common in those exposed to low levels of Terminus Energies while in utero, though higher levels of exposure have been known to have effect upon children and even adults. The precise mechanism of the mutation and subsequent development of supernatural abilities is not well understood though extensive testing has revealed that there is no lingering connection to the Terminus only the mark of its entropic energies upon the cells of the afflicted. Most affected develop powers almost immediatly within a weeks time for most older individuals and at birth for those exposed in utero.
The first recorded incidence of TEMS comes after the 1965 invasion. A pregnant woman abducted by Omegas forces and later freed by the Freedom League gave birth to a disfigured infant with almost demonic features. Initial suspicion fell on deliberate meddling by the forces of hte Terminous and the child and its family was taken into custody by AEGIS for observation. Soon others however were revealed, many looked no different than normal infants but were possesed of powers well beyond thier control. It became Standard procedure for AEGIS to intervene when a confirmed T-Baby was exposed. The energies of hte Terminus brought to bear on Feedom city int he 1965 invasion were weak and localized and some parents hid thier childrens powers until they were older or they left the city. With no solid reason to hold the children even those taken into custody were released by their teens unless they proved a real and present danger to themselves or others.
In the interveneing years AEGIS monitored the TEMS afflicted for signs of criminal or worse tendancies and though no statistically significant pattern was established suspicion ran high. Most were of exceptionally low poer able to do little more than produce low level electrical bursts, or glow, or merely whatever advantage may have been granted by physical mutations. The small sample size however meant that those few with significant ability who did go rogue made it all to easy to draw assumptions. By the time the first generation of TEMS afflicted reached adulthood many in the halls of power were uncertain about the posibility of T-Babies hiding amonst the populace or posing as costumed vigilantes. This fervor only fed the fires of the Moore Act and the dark ages of the costumed hero in Freedom City and abroad.
With the return of Omega and the sacrifice of Centurion to defeat him in 1993 the concern of consistent and repeated attack by the Terminus was cemented in the public mind. While Freedom once more loved its heroes, those touched by the energy of hte Terminus were met with revulsion and fear. ASTRO labs scientists had managed to isolate a test for TEMS in newborns and all children born in Freedom City who were in utero at the time of the invasion and tested positive were taken into ostensibly protective custody, the net was cast wide though doubtless some slipped through it. Around the world other T-babies were revealed sometimes hailed as new heroes mor often driven from their homes or worse. Those with obvious physical deformities of course had it the worst. In Freedom AEGIS and ASTRO labs set up a secure school for the children of the Terminous as they were ominously labled in internal documentation. While treated well by and large by the scientists and staff the children were sepperated from thier families at a young age. It wasn't until most of them were five or six that legal action on the part of thier parents allowed those deemed low daner to return home though they still attened the special school and had thier travel sharply monitored and curtailed. Finally the School was disbanded by court order when the students neared high school age. Some went on to attend Claremont Academy though most with only minor abilities entered the general population and those with more extreme physical mutations either continued ot attend the ASTRO labs courses or more rarely retreated from public life to be homeschooled or join together for group living in more private settings.
Second Generation T-babies are reaching adulthood and concern rises that their aflfiction may continue on to thier children. There was little sign of genetic continuance of TEMS in the first Generation of T-babies however little monitoring of hte rare high powered individuals was conducted. With the greater number of Second Generation TEMS and the higher level of Terminus energies suffising thier tissues it is feared they may be more likely to produce lineages of potent superhumans. AEGIS continues to monitor the registered TEMS afflicted to this day and has plans in place to test offspring though the legal mandate if questionable.
Views on the Children of the Terminous are nearly universally poor. If nothing else they serve as a stark reminder of the losses incured in the second invasion. Some blame the T-babies for the loss of loved ones or the Centurion, others fear their power or that they may be agents of Omega themselves. High profile super villains that are identified as T-babies or even potential t-babies due to age are held up as examples in media of the dangers the Children of the Terminus pose to humanity even should they not serve Omega directly. An assumption that the corruptive influence of the Terminus will effect the mind and morals of the TEMS afflicted is at the core of many of these fears. If they could be so changed physically are they still human in thier mind and morality? It is an uphill battle for the hearts and minds of the baseline population though one some TEMS children are willing to undertake living openly with not only thier powers but the source of those powers.
Terminus Babies are not a protected class under anti-descrimination law, thus policies baring them from employment particularly in sensative areas of civils service as well as in the public sector are widespread. Due to the expense of ASTRO Labs testing the registration master list maintained by AEGIS is used to determine eligibility in most cases or for less secure positions it is often left to affirming that one is not afflicted. If uncovered as having lied or even should the policy change the TEMS individual has no legal recourse for the termination of employment. Understandably this has pushed no small number of the afflicted into crime as survival mechanism only worsening the image of hte T-Babies as a whole. FCPD, AEGIS, Blackstone, and many government services block all registered T-babies from employment as well as requiring affirmation of TEMS free status.
The medical community is largely supportive of efforts to normalize TEMS afflicted. They are genetically indistinguishable from Humanity beyond the rare mutation that specifically relates to genetics (most common in those physically altered) and there is no evidence of TEMS spreading even after extended exposure thus it is not treated as a disease. Of course some doctors hold to differing opinions particularly due to the lack of undeerstanding of the actual mechanism behind TEMS. Research into TEMS either to correct negative mmutations or understand the mechanism is a growing field. If fully understood or even duplicated the company who masters the technology will stand to make a fortune creating superhumans.
In addition to criminal cartels eager to offer much needed comradeship and financial security to those sufficiently empowered an willing to join their ranks there is a growing market in sales of fluids and tissues from T-babies. There is a thriving black market in such grotesqueries despite peoples reservations about the people themselves. With weak protections on such traffic and low public opinion there is little to be done unfortunately. While initial criems are prosecuted trafficing is unregulated and attempts to change that are blocked both by the scientific comunity still studying the syndrome as well as hate groups.
There are a few organizations that hold particulare relevance to T-babies. They will be described in more detail on thier own pages but in brief they are as follows.
- Alexadra Albright and AEON: Albright is a very publically out T-Baby and is known to be the hero Psyche. Her organization AEON has a mandate to help integrate T-babies and educate the populace that they are nothign to be feared.
- The Fellowship: The Fellowship is a brotherhood of T-baby supremacists. They hold that each super powered Terminus Enhanced is a soveriegn power in its own right. Many merely use this as an excuse to ignore the laws of the unenhanced and comit drastic acts of crime and mayhem. Others are true believers and target those how would surpress or imprison the T-babies for elimination.
- Humans First: Is a virulent Hate group devoted to the idea that T-babies are inherently evil and a real and present threat to humanity.
For the Player
If you wish to play a T-Baby there are a few things to keep in mind. Most likely any T-baby was in utero ether during the 1965 invasion making the character nearly fifty or during the 1993 invasion putting the character in thier early twenties. If you were part of the second generation you would most likely know the otehrs of your generation as you were all sequestered together. It is of course possible to be a rare individual outside of these restrictions, one could be the child of first gen T-babies, or have developed TEMS late in life due to exposure to Terminus energies from one of the invasions or a T-baby or other hero or villain connected to the Terminus in some fashion. One may also be a rare success in inducing TEMS through experimentation or even accidentally through exposure to TEMS afflicted tissues legitimately aquired or otherwise.
The last Terminus invasion (that anyone remembers) was over twenty years ago. Thus many younger heroes and bystanders have less fear and revulsion over T-babies compared to Older heroes who suffered more personal losses or have more fear of the Terminus. This is an easy explanation why a given character of the modern era would not fear or revile the T-babies, likewise even older characters may have been exposed to the good works of a T-baby and support them or just be a tursting enough soul to assume the best of them. This guide is by no means a mandate on any characters opinions of the Children of the Terminus but rather guidelines for the phenomenon in play as it has developed thus far. While society in general may hold little love lost for those with TEMS individuals of course vary wildly.