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Found 33 results

  1. June 2016 Lincoln Riley was on his best behavior - which meant he was sitting out in plain sight in the middle of the park, dressed in a baggy plaid shirt and jean, the only concession to his costumed identity the duffel bag at his feet that held bow, hatchet, poncho, and other Woodsman gear. He'd expected to be the subject of the usual double-takes and angry glares that he associated with walking on the streets of Earth-Prime on the way here, but so far no one had done more than look his way twice on his way from Claremont to here. All the muscles he'd put in his wiry arms, and the tone his voice had dropped in the past year, had certainly paid off. He rather liked it. He had never actually been in Lincoln before - like most of south Freedom, it wasn't safe ground for Woodsmen except in daylight and large numbers. The trainee he'd been had been sent to safer ground in north Freedom, though even that was more a matter of degree...thoughts of his homeworld made him tense, enough to slide off the bench and began to pace it, back and forth and back and forth. This was a stupid idea.
  2. April 18, 2015  Southside    Hologram was on her way to visit the Howards, a young couple in their mid-twenties with a little daughter named Emma. Emma is five and a little scrapper; a soon-to-be kindergartener who has started manifesting low-level flight and telekinesis. The Howards, young parents with no reported superhuman activity in the family, are nervous about sending their little girl off to Nicholson, even though they were the ones who contacted Nicholson in the first place. The school has a team of counselors and volunteer staff to help with this kind of thing, but one thing that has a proven track record is sending out a parent volunteer to talk to the parents so they do the right thing and get their little kid the education they need.    The Howards' home was a small bungalow in the Southside, a neighborhood that has begun to decline in the years since Paige first lived in Freedom City. But this little cul-de-sac is still doing well, a comfortable community of middle-class young families right at the beginning of their lives. Stepping outside, the most ominous thing Paige could see as she looked up at the little red house was a LOST DOG picture stapled to the nearest utility pole.    -   It had been the Scarab's last case. Well, second-to-last. In the summer of 1978, violent dreams of bloody carnage had woken Alexander Rhodes night after night, scenes of gore far too real to be imagined but with no real way to trace them to a source. He'd been in the process of developing a psionic resonator that would have allowed him to find the source of the mysterious visions, but then the Scions of Sobek had come to Freedom City, and Alexander Rhodes had never done anything else.    The Scarab started seeing the visions again last week. Not the same visions; these were scenes of nature, red in tooth and claw, the brutal killing of animals by something fast and predatory - but the psychic 'color' of the visions was just the same. This time the technology does exist to help the Scarab's powers, though, and so it is that within a few days she's been able to trace the source of the visions to one particular neighborhood in the Southside, a middle-class cul-de-sac that's avoided the rising poverty in the neighborhood.    -    Wail's phone rang yesterday, going straight to the machine with Keith busy in class. The voice on the other end was rough and male, nobody he immediately recognized. "Wail. Come to the Southside tomorrow morning." He rattled off an address. "We need help." Click - and from a cell line that didn't pick up again when Lamar called it back.  
  3. N/A

    Man That You Fear

    The Giza Brewpub & Theatre's online crowdfunding campaign had been a massive success, and the subsequent renovations had managed to upgrade the picture quality and kitchen facilities without sacrificing the old-school charm of the interior facades. There was only one screen, but it was massive, and between the floor seating and the balcony level, there were over a thousand seats, all sold out days ago. Tonight's grand re-opening was a student-organized fundraiser for Joseph Clark High. Locals from Lincoln and Southside rubbed elbows with the hipsters commuting across the South River, all eager for the double feature: A newly-restored print of the genre-redefining horror classic Dead Moon Rising, followed the premiere of the recent remake. Ten percent of every ticket sold for tonight was going to the school. Of all the teachers at Joseph clark, Mister LaMarr had been the obvious choice to be "volunteered" to attend and keep an eye on things. If nothing else, his presence would help to placate the busybodies on the PTA worried about the possibility of underage drinking.
  4. N/A

    Man That You Fear

    The "Giza" is the Bagdad with the serial numbers filed off. A Google image search will give you a good idea of the general look and layout. "Dead Moon Rising" is basically a Freedomverse Night of The Living Dead.
  5. GM Friday, January 23rd. 2:30 PM. Some days, elbow-deep in elephant droppings, Tara had questioned her decision to intern at the Hanover Zoo. She she swore she would take back all her complaints if she came out of today in one piece. She'd been with Joan in the security station when it happened, thank God. The two of them watched through the cameras as the zoo erupted into utter chaos. Bobo the grizzly charged through the sliding doors of the visitors' center before they were fully open, shattering glass and scattering screaming crowds. Tic and Tac, two of the adult hippopotamuses, smashed headfirst into the zoo train, throwing the school kids riding it roughly onto the ground and scattering sparks that quickly caught in the dry grasses. And then the power went out, leaving them in total darkness. Joan laid a reassuring hand on Tara's shoulder. "Call 911 and stay put," the security guard told her, her voice calm but firm. "I'm going to go break out the tranqs." Fumbling for the door of the security hut, she wrenched it open. Sunlight streamed in, catching on the older woman's silver hair and fierce eyes... and on the horn of the rhinoceros thundering past. Towser didn't even slow as he impaled the door, ripping it from its hinges; Joan leapt back inside, the wind of his passage tugging at her uniform. "On second thought," she told Tara, "I think I'll stay here, too." They ducked under the computer console and stayed very, very quiet. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- "It's a damn goat, Simmons! You put a 6'4" guy on his face a week ago, why is this so hard?" Officer Ted Simmons wrestled with the ram, arms straining as he held it back by the horns. It snapped its flat teeth at him whenever it got close, and had already come perilously close to the end of his nose. "I don't wanna hurt the friggin' thing, Sergeant," he shouted back. "I might break its neck if I try to throw it down by the head!" Sergeant 'Pepper' Pettars grunted; he had problems of his own, trying to dissuade a pair of ewes from kicking his shins in. They'd be the laughingstock of the precinct for this. And then Simmons heard the Sergeant's voice again. "Run! Drop everything and run!" He looked up, and the color drained from his face. He let go of the goat, a thunderous trumpeting sounding in his ears, and scrambled back, back toward the police perimeter. He stumbled as the ram butted him in the back of the knee, and it saved his life; a station wagon soared over his head, flipping end over end, and crashed down in front of him, spraying windshield glass in all directions. Some days, he reflected as the elephants bore down on the police perimeter, it really didn't pay to get out of bed.
  6. -Richard Cline, An Oral History of the Terminus Invasion   Summer 1993 First National Bank of Lincoln   Richard Cline stuck out in the crowd of customers waiting in line for the teller for three reasons - his tapping foot, rolling eyes, and general air of impatience marked him as someone eager to be anywhere else than waiting in line, his white skin and flashy clothes marked him as an outsider among the bank’s mostly working-class customers, and his baseball cap and sunglasses were just a little odd for this early in the morning. The other customers gave him a wide berth, when they weren’t glaring at him - just as planned.   It was hot in the bank, but not quite hot enough for them to run the air - instead the music from the lot across the street gently thrummed in through the open windows. “Cause my heart is beatin’ triple time, yeah!” He did a little dance in place, snapping his fingers to the beat, and winked at a little kid watching him from the row behind. Poor little bastard, stuck in these lines with his boring mundane ‘rents. Maybe we’ll give him something to think about. He slid back and forth on his sneakers as he stood there, brand-new rubber squeaking again and again against the green marble floor.   He and Paige hadn’t been back in Freedom City for a while, but they’d kept up their careers in New York and London, and even made the front page in the latter when they’d squared off against Britannia while making off with the Prime Minister’s watch. Maybe we should go to Canada next. Those jerks in True North could be taken down a notch or two. “What are _you_ looking at?” he sneered over his sunglasses at an older man in the business suit before he pulled the shades back up and made a rude face. Stupid old man, thinks he can start something. He yanked his fingers down his vest, snapping it tight, and thought Paige’s way.   Baby, once we pawn the jewels, let’s run up to that theater in Queens and see Jurassic Park again. He knew his girl was already in position, getting the crowd in the bank ready for the show of their boring little lives, while he kept everyone’s attention through his confident demeanor and manly swagger. He tapped his pristine white Air Jordans and thought good thoughts about showing Paige a very good time in that darkened theater. Feeling like a T-Rex today! He was thirty years old, he had the best superpowers and the best girl in the world, and they were about to do what they did best - CRIME!   Guard’s at the door...checking his watch...think he’s gonna go take a whiz. When he finally got to the front of the line, an eternally frustrating five or six minutes later, Richard pulled off his shades and smiled real big at the middle-aged clerk, flashing his pearly whites. “Honey, I got good news, and I got good news - first, you can take the day off. Even better is -” He jumped up and kicked off, speeding up the room and slowing himself as he did a totally, bodaciously badass flip that landed him on top of the counter. Enjoying the shocked faces of the crowd in that one long, frozen moment, he pulled off his magenta vest, bright red tie, black leather jacket, and white tee, and threw on the black and white jumpsuit that he’d been wearing since he was a teenager.   “Fast-Forward and Hologram are here to put a little color in your lives! Everybody get down!”
  7. Monday, February 25th 9:32 PM He realized it hurt the mystique, but Nick really needed a cup of coffee. The urn had broken at work late in the afternoon, he'd found himself quite short of beans when he got home, and now that he was out on the street, he could feel himself starting to flag. So far, the night's patrol had been really peaceful - many of the ghosts were staying in at their haunts, there didn't seem to be new restless dead, and he hadn't run into any street crime. And he didn't exactly want to be dealing with anything while he was less than alert. There was a 7-Eleven on the corner of Lark Street. It was far from his preferred brew, but it would do. The cashier certainly started when Nick entered - having a man made up like the dead would do that. Nick had been amiable for the entirety of the visit, but the clerk never really let his guard down. Guy probably doesn't have many heroes stop by, he said. Or at least heroes that look like me. He'd just gotten back to the Pale Horse and taken a sip when he heard a loud bang in the distance. Any vague hope of it being a car backfiring was cut off by two follow-up bursts. He jumped into the car and took off towards the source of the gunfire. And now we're back in the swing of things... so to speak.
  8. August 15, 2013 The messages arrived in different ways for different heroes - Cannonade and Wander had theirs delivered to one of the anonymous tip drop boxes the Liberty League used to collect correspondance, Wail had his delivered by standard mail to Keith LaMarr's home address, while Willow's came via a scanned copy emailed directly to Vince. They were instantly recognizable as odd - the envelopes weren't paper but vellum, some sort of processed animal skin, and the stamps affixed to them were wildly overpaid, as if someone had bought a chunk of postage and slapped it on an envelope without knowing how the value of postage actually worked. Inside the envelopes lay a simple message written in thick, heavy block printing - again on vellum, albeit by something that looked more like a pencil. HELLO YOU ARE INVITED TO THE ADULTED HOOD CELEBRATION OF RUNS-WITH-FANGS-BARED. PLEASE COME TO BATSTO VISITOR CENTER AT SUNSET TOMORROW IF YOU WANT TO COME. WITNESS MIGHTS OF WITH-FANGS-BARED CLAN AND RAPTOR EMPIRE. A quick trip to Google found the Batsto Vistor Center easily enough; a historic "living history" village deep in the heart of the Wharton State Forest. Heroes who remember the encounter with emissaries of the Raptor Empire will recall Runs-With-Fangs-Bared, the teenage daughter of the raptor commander who learned a lesson about not calling humans apes all the time.
  9. Nick Cimitiere and Wail deal with a street gang that seems to have some supernatural backup.
  10. April 4, 2013 Albany Subway Station Freedom City The deed was done and the heroes had returned triumphant, rescuing dozens of people from extra-dimensional enslavement in a world cast like a mockery of their own planet's grim past. The Freedom League was already working to strengthen the world's magical defenses with the help of magically inclined independent heroes; and the castaway from FLSCH that Caradoc had crossed dimensional boundaries to rescue was back home with his delighted lover. Steve had gone back to Gina, told the story of exactly what had happened to his Caradoc emitter, and promised to avoid deliberately standing under showers of molten steel "to prove some kind of ridiculous point". But the job wasn't done yet. It had been easy enough, once he borrowed Gina's computer, for Steve to look up something of Wail's history - the veteran hero who had fought alongside others in the Terminus invasion of 1993. That had been the greatest crisis in the history of this world, the public face of the horror of it all still burned into the minds of many of the Freedomians who had fought in it, lived through it, seen others die in it. Would such a man really be interested in talking with him? Steve had already been shamed enough by the open hands and welcomes of so many heroes. Sitting alone in the subway station, his brown skin and scarred face keeping away most of the passersby, Steve was comfortable in his solitude. Fortunately, it didn't have to last forever.
  11. Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013 11:23 PM Cannonade tread across the roofs of Southside, looking down on the streets below. He was looking for some sign that might lead him to the answer to the latest mystery in a city that never seemed to run out of them. Specifically, he was looking for an anachronism. He'd first learned about the issue at work, the week before. Harry, one of the long-time guys, had been talking about his brother. The guy had been working at a construction company that had gone bankrupt, and had spent months looking for a new job without finding much luck. Joe knew that well - his dad was busting his butt just trying to keep all the guys on the crew. But Harry's brother had called him about finding a new job, one that wasn't inside his usual skill set but which would pay well. He'd been gone two weeks, with his wife not hearing one word from him. But she had received something through her mail slot - a sack full of coins. Gold coins. He'd done some digging, checking over news articles on missing persons cases. Over the past three months, there'd been a few cases where the person who'd disappeared had been jobless, and had been so for a while. Not many articles mentioned if they'd taken employment before their disappearance, but the families had received items in the mail - a jade statue, for instance, or a box of rubies. Valuable things from people who had no idea how modern currency worked. Cannonade knew he wasn't the detecting type; he was more willing to throw himself into the fray and beat a problem until it went away. He'd checked the case files on the missing persons, finally finding a detective who was willing to bring in a hero. They'd let it slip that there was a detail in one of the disappearances that wasn't mentioned in the press - the man's daughter had heard the clopping of hooves on asphalt, and woken to see a carriage outside her house. She'd gone back to bed, thinking it was a dream. And now, Cannonade locked his eyes on the streets below, hoping for one hell of an unlikely sight, and hoping it might help him find where these people had vanished to.
  12. Cannonade, Wail, Harrier, and Gabriel investigate missing people, end up dealing with an industrial revolution in Avalon. Odds are your character is investigating some aspect of the disappearances. All the missing people were jobless, but in different aspects - some were homeless, others were students just out of college who couldn't find work, others were unemployed and had been for a while. Somewhere in the disappearances lies the story of a carriage.
  13. Monday, April 15th, 2013 7:32 PM The O'Neil Housing Projects were not exactly the finest place to stay in Freedom City. It wasn't like anyone expected anything better out of the Fens, but the place had one hell of a reputation - gang violence, break-ins, and a thriving drug trade. But it was also home to several people who really didn't have anywhere else to go, and who were trying their hardest to reach for something better. Cannonade knew of at least one of them. Darnell Franklin was a guy he knew down at the foundry. They weren't exactly the best of friends, but they'd shared a few lunches and talked about how the Comets were doing. When he didn't show up for work on Monday, he didn't really chalk it up to anything weird - probably just illness. But then Alex - who was friends with Darnell - had mentioned that his phone was going directly to voice mail. After he'd gotten off his shift, he'd decided it wouldn't hurt to stop by the O'Neil projects as part of his nightly patrol. When he got there, he found the place on complete lockdown. Cop cars were around the block, with a SWAT truck or two for variety. And it looked like some of the cops were making adjustments to the types of robots the bomb squad tended to use. Yeah. There's no way this can be good.
  14. Cannonade, Wail, Pitch, and Warp respond to a series of disappearances and find that a housing project has been colonized by the Dimension of Doors. Cannonade, Wail, and Warp all arrive on the scene either because they know someone at the Projects who didn't show up for work/school/etc., or because the news has started to break out over police channels about how there's "a wide-scale event" going down at the Projects. Pitch, meanwhile, likely heard from her pet demon that something is "growing" at the Projects.
  15. Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012 8:52 PM The night brought a nice chill to Freedom City, a relief from the heat of the day. A mini-heatwave had fallen on Freedom, the heart of Summer right in the depths of Spring. While the weather forecasts said it would break tomorrow, no one was holding their breath. Cannonade was already sweating under his flight jacket; he thought about the possibility of making a costume that'd allow him to run about in just his shirtsleeves, but tonight was not the night for that. So instead, he hung close to the water, taking in the cool breeze that was whipping up off the water. He ran across the rooftops of dockside warehouses, looking down on the scenes below. There was always some game going on by the Waterfront, if you knew where to look. The smaller outfits competed over abandoned warehouses, using them to store or, in some cases, produce drugs. The larger outfits based their fronts out of the docks, using the apparent import of china dolls or stuffed animals to bring cocaine and heroin into the country. Cannonade slowed as he approached the lip of the warehouse roof, pausing to listen to the voices below. "This isn't what we asked for." "It's been a slow month." He crouched down, taking some cover as he gazed down at the confrontation. Five men in pinstripe suits were engaged in negotiations - the kind that involved wagging fingers and visible firearms - stood toe-to-toe with four men in denim jackets, all looking like some matter of metalhead. Cannonade recognized the patch of the Death Road Ministry on their jackets. "We're not letting you hold this place out of charity," said the lead goon in the suit. "If you think you can stiff us..." "Don't think we care," said the lead Minister. He reached into his jacket. "This is our place now. You can go tell your boss where he can stick that cigar of his." The men in the pinstripes went for their guns, just as the Ministers reached into their own jackets. Cannonade dropped down softly into the nearby alley, moving forward. Pretty good as gang negotiations go. Took thirty seconds for someone to do something stupid.
  16. Cannonade, Glowstar, Wail and Gabriel all deal with shark drugs. And we don't mean "drugs for sharks."
  17. Friday, June 22nd 9:13 PM She didn't want to say anything like, "This heroing stuff is easy." She knew that led to all sorts of horribly cliched disasters raining down upon people's heads. But Eliza had to admit, there hadn't really been much happening the past few nights. Oh, sure, she'd only technically begun her patrols on Monday, once school was out. Before then was a lot of practice, a lot of training, and a lot of designing. She'd taken a trip to the Goodman Building just to make sure she got the right Atomwear to complete her costume - and that was after a few dozen passes of the various thrift stores in South Freedom to get the right coat. She didn't want to go out looking like Lady Liberty, but she still wanted something that looked professional while being dangerous. She had an image to cut. And she'd been cutting it all over Lincoln, taking aim at some of the usual low lifes - muggers, drug dealers, and, on Tuesday, a few thieves trying to clean out the safe of an OTB joint. One of them had pulled a gun on her, but she'd managed to throw an icicle right into its barrel. That was a hell of a thing to recall. But so far, it was quiet. She was lurking in the mouth of a back alley - she hadn't learned to travel through water like her dad, so she had to rely a lot on alleyways and stealth, and while it was tricky to pull off, it often brought her in line with her kind of targets. The sounds of the city played out around her, especially the thudding base - there was a block party going down a ways over. Maybe she'd make her way there later, if things got quiet - ditch the mask and the coat and just chill, enjoy the festivities. That quickly fell by the wayside as the screams rose, only to cut off as soon as they began. Eliza ran fast, tearing out of the alley way. Let's see what it is this time. Sounds big, whatever it is...
  18. Temperance makes her heroic debut, runs into Wail, and deals with Rant, Rave... and other weirdness.
  19. Unfair Science Fair May 22, 2012 It was a big day at Joseph Clark High School; luckily Keith LaMarr was a very big man. The largest public high school in Lincoln was today hosting the 23rd annual George Washington Carver Science Fair, a cavalcade of the best and brightest from all over South Freedom. Kids from around there didn't get a lot of opportunities, so the chance for budding young geniuses to strut their stuff in public before potential college scouts was very compelling. It helped that today the school had managed to secure a celebrity judge for the GWC Fair: the world-famous gadgeteer Miss Americana! A lot of this was outside of Keith's area of expertise, of course, but few teachers at any high school in the area could bring a crowd of parents, students, and onlookers to heel with a look with as much ease as Mr. LaMarr the civics teacher. So he was on scene early to help with organization as Joseph Clark's kids got their displays set up and more kids began to arrive for the fair. It was a big day for everybody, with palpable excitement on the eager faces of the young scholars. Nearby was Patrick Grayson, an up-and-coming young senior whose intelligence had vaulted him several grades up, his research project having let him construct a minature gravitic generator like what Daedalus used to power his armor. The floating silver sphere was just a toy, but it bespoke good things for the kid who'd built it on his table using scraps. Keith had had special reason to pay attention to Patrick, and that reason was there too. Patrick's grandpa was watching his son work with pride, the grey-haired older man with his shock of hair and mustache vaguely slightly resembling Don King. Peter Grayson, aka the Mauler, had been a recurring foe for 1-800-JUSTICE back in the day, but the former prizefighter had abandoned his criminal ways after marrying Patrick's gramma Rose Marie. Pete had recognized Keith, of course, but the now- bespectacled older man had been very careful to stay close by his grandson rather than wander too close to his old enemy. -------- Meanwhile, across town, Glow and Citizen were flying along from the Claremont campus towards Miss Americana's laboratory; her facility one at the Lab, not the one at Archetech. It was Glow's 'ride-along day' for Miss Americana, part of her heroic training, which luckily coincided with Citizen's weekly day spent with his mentor. "You'll have a _great time_ with Miss A," Citizen was reassuring Glow, obviously looking very happy to be there. He didn't hang out with Kristen too much, but she was pretty cool, and of course Miss A was the coolest. "We're not doing much today, just some stuff around Freedom City, but she's great to hang out with. Her lab's got great gadgets, and she's just neat." He hadn't had a chance to hang out with Miss A much (as opposed to Gina) lately, and so he was looking forward to today quite a lot. Glow had heard of Miss Americana, of course, who hadn't heard of the beautiful, all-American genius whose charitable works made her so popular? From cybernetic limbs for injured kids all the way through blasting city-controlling abominations from the depths of space, Miss Americana was all right. It made a lot of sense that a famous science hero like Miss A had a cybernetic sidekick like Citizen, for all that he hadn't talked much about where he came from. Miss A had left the window of her laboratory open against the comfortable late spring day (since this was more a traveling day than a working day), and Glow and Citizen flew right in.
  20. Miss A, Wail, Glow, and Citizen deal with a legacy from the recent past and the very distant future.
  21. August 10th, 2011 Lincoln 12:11 AM Freedom City was a prosperous burg, a shining city of progress and opportunity. In recent history, the cleaning up of the Fens was often touted as an example of how things were getting better. But for the citizens living in Lincoln, time might have decided to stand still. This was very evident late one night (so late it's early in the morning, as the joke went) on a corner deep in the neighborhood. The building was a glass-walled box that had changed hands between various entrepreneurs; at the moment it was a Qwik-'n'-Buy. Something things always stayed the same, like the high school kid manning the counter at such a late hour -- and the four other teenagers with big guns, wearing ski masks. The two with shotguns (one pump, one sawed-off double-barrel) were keeping the cashier covered while he emptied the register; the pair with pistols (one revolver, one Walther PPK knock-off) were ransacking the shop, showing a distinct preference for TV dinners and alcohol.
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