Wednesday, June 29, 2005
President says evidence of superhuman creation program in Iraq, requests UN resolution to begin inspections.
Institute for Human Advancement donates advanced anti-superhuman equipment to PART.
City Council considering resolution to rescind County statute on metahuman insurance requirements. Hewson takes heat from protestors.
"Brother Hood" makes court appearance, supporters clash with protestors outside courthouse.
Black Phantom prevents riot.
Construction begins on City Center Building.
President Otanga of Luranga accuses King Ayawan of Unadai of sponsoring campaigns of genocide against mutants in neighboring nations.
Ambassador Smith of San Muerte gives evidence before UN Security Council of Chilean-sponsored terrorism in his small nation; says President Zerstoiten "will not tolerate such attacks on our sovereign soil."
Morgan "Tripleforte" Durante presented medal by Queen Elizabeth for stopping terrorist attack on Tower Bridge.
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
I could pour through the bible pages you set out for me but in the end I come back to this.
Right now my soul is screaming this. Until this stops I will not even be able to make heads or tails of your questions & answers.
I've been given a chance to souls search & until I do some of that. Here is my answer for you.
(Durante sings & plays in a jazz mix)
So, so you think you can tell
Heaven from Hell, blue skies from pain?
Can you tell a green field
From a cold steel rail?
A smile from a veil?
Do you think you can tell?
Did they get you to trade
Your heroes for ghosts?
Hot ashes for trees?
Hot air for a cool breeze?
Cold comfort for change?
And did you exchange
A walk on part in the war
For a lead role in a cage?
How I wish, how I wish you were here.
We're just two lost souls
Swimming in a fish bowl, year after year,
Running over the same old ground.
What have we found?
The same old fears.
Wish you were here.
Sunday, June 26, 2005
It isn’t The Man keeping me down.
It isn’t a rogue cop with an agenda.
It’s my own fault.
This is important to keep in mind as I chronicle my latest adventures as the Hooligan…
I’ve got the satellite dish fired up, watching Scotland take on Moldova. It’s 2-0 for the Tartan Army, 87th minute, when the phone rings. Sure enough, it’s my guy at the LAPD, requesting another “job.” It seems that a rap superstar named Arthur Paindragon (Vanguard assures me his nickname is “Ice”) became a victim of spontaneous combustion while performing at a large concert. I’d seen a bit about it on the news, but I’m not much of a rap fan – if it’s not outlawed tunes on outlawed pipes, it’s shit.
Of course, it’s interesting to note that Mr. Paindragon was not the first person in the L.A. area to go up in smoke on their own recently. He was the eighth person in the past few months – which made me wonder why the LAPD was just now getting around to really looking into things, but hey - what do I know? Apparently this Paindragon fellow was popular with the kids, and so the media attention has been pretty negative.
You have to give the LAPD credit, though – they don’t ask me to collar the perp. They just ask me to clean up.
I like to clean up.
I don’t have a lot to go on other than the list of victims and a newspaper report that a gang called the Oguans had taken credit. My first impulse, no matter how misguided, was to seek out my favorite ambulance company owner, but he wasn’t in. My buddy Price was, however, and told me what he knew – which amounted to jack.
My next move was to head down to the Councilman’s office. Hope that the Flea would be there as well. Three heads working on the problem had to be better than my battered noggin.
The councilman was in with his ward…err, intern…and the three of us set to work – I delving into my knowledge of the L.A. underground, the councilman using his network of contacts, and the Flea scampering all over the Inter-Net to fill in the holes.
We managed to dig up the following about the eight victims…
Crysta Gayle – exotic dancer at an establishment called “The Creamery”
Jason Bakerfield – LAPD detective
Bob Wilkins – techie at Gablesoft and hacker whose online handle was “RadioFlyer”
Darla Chase – middle management at Yoshima Corp.
Jengis Kwan – leader of a local gang known as the “Mongol Horde”
Aleph Gradinger – pharmaceutical scientist at Fordham ChemTec
John Taggart – no info; killed outside a 7-11
Arthur Paindragon – rapper
Items we learned while delving into the list…
§ I went down to The Creamery (which was HARD work) and tried to find out anything I could about Crysta. I learned that she had been laid up with a respiratory illness, that when she came back she was dancing “better than ever,” and that another dancer named “Jessica” may have had it out for her.
§ Vanguard talked with Bakerfield’s former partner, Detective Gehl. They were investigating the Shadowfists, the gang which controls most of the L.A. drug trade. Bakerfield had apparently learned the location of a factory which was manufacturing Flame, a new designer drug. I learned that the Shadowfists were the ones who ended the New Guardians as a superhero group. Also found out that the poor bastard had colitis, and that he was “itchy” before he went up in flames.
§ The Flea found some interesting info on Bob Wilkins. Internet rumors had it that he: developed a crippling ‘net virus, was killed by a computer program which could remotely incinerate people, and was new to the internet. None of this information could be corroborated, so we left it alone.
§ Darla Chase was a woman with no family and no friends, apparently. Career driven, perhaps?
§ Vanguard set to work on the Mongol Horde and found out they were readying to take some turf from the Tiger Claw gang in Chinatown until their leader (Jengis Kwan) was stabbed in the kidney.
§ Vanguard had a chat with Gradinger’s widow, and found out he had been working on a secret project at ChemTec. He had been laid up recently with chemical burns and had received skin grafts as a result. The Flea couldn’t make anything of the files that Vanguard brought back, so I called a friend of mine in the Chemistry department at USC to try and decipher the mess.
§ The Flea learned that Taggart ran an illegal gambling parlor called the “Pair-a-Dice Club.” He was charged in connection with the club, but charges were dropped before he could come to trial.
§ Paindragon had recently checked into the Jim Morrison Center for Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation. Interesting.
There seemed to be a pattern with the medical problems, although they didn’t pop up for everyone on the list. We decided to put that possibility on the backburner and go get some firsthand info from the Mongols. (As a side note – why do I always have to drive? Why does no one ever chip in for gas? It’s bloody ridiculous. The AMC Pacer was NOT intended to hold more than, well, me. I could look past that if I got A FEW BUCKS here and there from my comrades.)
I lurked in the shadows across the street while Vanguard had a chat with some loitering Mongols. Why did I lurk? Because Vanguard wanted to get the info from them without any physical violence. Flea seemed to agree. I pouted.
Irony of this? Vanguard managed to start a fight with them. It was nice to crack my knuckles a bit – it had been a while – but these poor guys weren’t much of a challenge for three of us. Hence the reason I wanted to do it by myself.
The Mongols did reveal that:
A) The Oguans had killed Jengis
B) When Jengis had been stabbed before that a “Dr. Black” had treated him
C) A pair of paramedics named Gasser and Mack knew where to find Dr. Black
We didn’t get a chance to follow up immediately on these leads, however, as a return trip to the Hoolimobile revealed a pair of misfits reclining on my hood. Before I could give them a proper Scottish greeting, we learned they were Oguans and had been sent by Ignatius, the leader of the gang. Apparently, he was under the impression that we were looking to join the bunch? Lord Almighty.
Their compound – and I use that term generously – was an old house surrounded by a high fence. A high fence and a bunch of drugged out freaks, to be specific. We had a chat with the locals, namely Ignatius, who soon learned the error of his ways and decided to do us in. For the record, Vanguard once again goaded them into a brawl – and I’m the one who can’t be trusted in group settings?
There were some nasty villains involved. Guillotine? Ugh. Pain. Lots of flying blades. Lots of diced Scotsman. As usual, yours truly took one for the team and got beat to hell while the rest of them got to show off. (Did I mention the Merc with the auto cannon? Ack.)
(Did I mention we won’t be seeing Guillotine again? Heh heh.)
We apprehended a woman trying to leave. Lara. She was a hacker of some sort. I let the Flea and the Councilman deal with her. What she gave us was enough for us to realize that Ignatius and the Oguans had NOTHING to do with these spontaneous combustions. Ahh well. Back to square one.
Vanguard came up with the bright idea of raiding this Flame factory that Det. Bakerfield had been investigating. I have no objection to getting this garbage off the streets, so I went along amiably. What I will have an objection to from now on is dropping into the middle of a large combat through the skylight. We dealt with some run of the mill thugs for a bit until I started sparring with one who seemed way too strong to be in the mook business. Sure enough, a few head butts started to flake some skin off, and a few kicks to the groin were met with a loud TING!-ing sound. Cyborg. Great. The good news is that the ‘borg thought it would be funny to lift me off the ground by the throat. So there I am – dangling from a robotic hand, everything starting to go black, Vanguard cheering me on (NOT HELPING, MIND YOU. THE BLOODY GIT WAS STANDING THERE WITH HIS ARMS CROSSED SAYING CLEVER THINGS LIKE, “Uhh, go Hooligan. That guy’s a chode. Huh huh. Huh huh. I said chode.”) when who should appear in the doorway buy Justin Grishom.
My first villain. From way back in the day. Trying to scare convenience store owners into selling. I told him what I thought of his dastardly plan and resorted to fisticuffs.
He beat me pretty bad.
Justin sees me dangling there and says (and I’m still seething about this one) “Don’t I know you?”
I managed to choke out a weak, “I believe we’ve met.”
His reply – and I’m really still seething about this one – “Didn’t…didn’t I kill you?”
My clever reply – “Aaaaaaaach…”
Justin thought things were well in hand, so he walked away. Just walked away. Someday he’s going to pay for a lot of things. I have to tell myself that. He’s got one coming. Well, really, he’s got several coming.
Somehow, we managed to emerge victorious even with my lack of breathing and Vanguard’s later lack of consciousness. That Flea, man – what a powerhouse. I corralled a few techies by making my “England 5 Scotland 0?!?” face and snarling. They cowered like little Welsh girls.
Flea got a look at the ingredients of Flame and quickly decided that no, this wasn’t causing anyone to blow’d up. Dead end again. At least we got the place shut down and got a little bit of it off the streets. Of course, as we take a minute to celebrate, some weird lookin’ git – all black, with stars and such swirling around his “body” – drops in through the skylight, smiles at us, and tosses a bomb into the factory, which lead us to, ahh, “skedaddle”.
We finally decide to check and see if the others on the list had ailments of some sort, and sure enough, they had. Everyone on the list had been a transplant recipient recently. We split up – Flea decided to tail Mack and Gasser, while Vanguard and I shoved off for the hospital to find out about the transplants – they’d all been performed by some sort of “independent contractor”, and we wondered what was up.
Turns out every one of them had acquired their organs illegally. They’d been way down on their respective organ lists and jumped right to the top. The doctor we spoke with (whose name I’ll withhold for his protection) explained that he was ill at ease with these procedures, and that they had all been performed by Dr. Black. He thought maybe the Chinese Tongs were supplying the organs.
Shortly after this conversation, we get a radio shout from the Flea, saying, “I followed Gasser and Mack. Guess what they were doing!”
Vanguard and I replied in unison, “Harvesting illegal organs?”
After a slight pause, the Flea regained his composure and said, “How did you…well, I followed them all the way…”
Vanguard cut in. “…to Dr. Black’s office?” Now, was it anyone else I know, they would have been loathe to speak any more. Not the Flea. He’s unflappable. He makes your average help-an-old-lady-across-the-street Boy Scout look like your average help-a-young-altar-boy-across-his-lap priest. A real straight shooter.
The Flea seemed to think that whatever drug Dr. Black was using in his patients to fight rejection may have been the cause of the combustion. A quick trip to his office allowed me to flex my lock picking skills – well, to be fair, my ramming-my-head-through-a-door skills – and we were in. Then I found the alarm. Got to get better about that. Do it ahead of time from now on.
We didn’t find much in the office proper, but I managed to find a secret door in one of the examination rooms and got it open without much trouble. The hallway it revealed led to a lab, but as we stepped in, a computer voice asked for the password. Before either the Flea or I could do anything, Vanguard says, “Uhh, Klatu Verata Neck (cough cough cough).” Needless to say, I wasn’t surprised when the doors slammed shut and the pleasant hiss of gas escaping into the room could be heard.
For a while, things get hazy. I think the gas got to me a little worse than it did Vanguard or the Flea. I’m told that Flea and I managed to break us out of the room through another door, only to wade into a mess of Tongs with machine guns. They gave us very little trouble. (I find this hard to believe. .50 caliber slugs hurt.) Vanguard flung one of them down an elevator shaft, and then talked me into patching the bastard up. (It had to be the gas. Or his constant sniveling about protecting every human life – even the bad ones.) The next floor up was a surgery, well stocked, but nothing out of the ordinary. Another floor up gave us more Tongs, and a slew of super baddies. My particular fight was with some arsehole named Speedfreak, who moved like the bloody wind. He did me in pretty good. Also, Dr. Black thought it might be fun to take a scalpel and cut me up a little while I was out. (Needless to say, there will be payback for that one. Lots of payback.) Vanguard and the Flea overcame some nasty nasty baddies – Vanguard still babbles about one called Decay (to be fair, Decay f***ed Vanguard up pretty good – I patched him up as best I could) – but Dr. Black got away.
Vanguard managed to find a few papers Dr. Black hadn’t destroyed, and pieced together the awful truth of the situation – unbeknownst to the bad doctor, he had been using a supply of organs harvested from vampires. (Editor’s note – this can only go well.) The recipients would burst into flames as soon as they went out into the sunlight. We destroyed the rest of the organs and called in my good friends with the LAPD to clean up what I hadn’t cleaned up.
At this point, my job with the police was over, but we clearly couldn’t allow this sort of thing to continue. Flea and I decided to assume our normal identities and head to the Tech Noir, a place where members of this Vampire gang were rumored to hang out. Let me tell you – a pipe-smoking man in a tweed jacket doesn’t look as Goth as you might think; yet we were able to get in touch with a girl who said she could lead us to the people we needed. She gave us the address (TRAP!) of (TRAP!) a (TRAP!) moderately (TRAP!) old (TRAP!) moderately (TRAP!) rundown (TRAP!) warehouse (TRAP!) on (TRAP!) the (TRAP!) docks (TRAP! TRAP! TRAP!). Vanguard reasoned that they wouldn’t realize we were paranormal, and I listened (TRAP!). We knew it was probably a trap, but we thought we could handle ourselves – and Vanguard planned to come along and help if things got rough.
We got to meet the head chick. She asked if we were the people who’d raided Dr. Black’s operation. I was a little taken aback, but we decided honesty was the best policy (TRAP!). We said yes. She asked what we’d done with the organs. Flea told her we’d destroyed them. She asked if we’d told anyone the awful truth. We assured her we had not, that we were men of our word. She said, “Good, good…you may kill them now,” and that’s when the vampires jumped out of the shadows.
Oddness begins at this point. As Flea and I went back to back…or is that ankle to back?...the cavalry arrived. By cavalry, I mean Vanguard…Trauma…Triple Forte…and that strange writer guy. Mason? I think it’s Mason. The fight was on. The vampires…and it gets even more odd here…beat up on some of the other members of the team, but not this guy. I was still on my feet at the end. Unscratched. Unscathed. (Side note – is it bad if members of the team had their blood sucked by vampires?)
We learned that the local mob, which was all but destroyed by the Shadowfists, had decided to go immortal and become vampires. That’s PERFECTLY natural. We also learned that Flea unwittingly told the woman who I presume was the head vampire everything he knew about us…you know – addresses, phone numbers, secret identities.
Un-freaking-believeable. So that’s on the agenda next, I suppose – getting to her before she gets to … well, whatever it is she plans on doing with this info.
Why is Mason on this mission?
That's been the question on my mind the entire time. I wanted a chance to get to know him a bit more before continuing on in a group with him. He can be a pompous jerk at times and he really doesn't seem to want to see my point of view very well, but he does at least pay lip service to moral issues. I just don't understand why it's so hard for him to see things the way I do. He seems like one of those smart guys who can't see the obvious. I need to review what I've learned about this guy from what's happened so I'll try a recap of events here in my log to set my mind straight about him.
I had decided to start my program of reforming supervillains with Nick-O'Dumbass first. I knew what his main problem was and how to go about fixing it (assuming that my theory about villainous behavior being just symptomatic of a root disorder is correct). Also, he needed immediate help and couldn't get it done himself or from any other willing outside agent. Lastly, he's already in jail with Canadian babysitters to watch over his rehab to see if he's faking it all or not. His need is severe so the potential chance for major behavioral change is high. If I can succeed with him, I can continue with others like Price, the mutant teens, the 40 Knights and even maybe BlkD.
So I got Durante and Mason to lead me to some gold-plated lady who seemed to know what was up with this whole thing. She wanted to share the cure with numbnuts (still suspicious). She gave us a magic grocery list of stuff to find and give to her. Mason said we should talk to some Toad guy about it and he blew us off because someone cursed him. Said we needed to go to Scotland and talk to his uncle about lifting the curse before he'd give us the answers. Sounded kinda childish and stupid, but I guess so is cursing someone if you don't like him.
In Scotland, Mason ups and deflates out tire without telling me what he's doing. Then we had to walk a few miles to get to the guy's house. I coulda punctured the tire easily, but he just isn't the kinda guy to make a joint plan. Also, he took the battery out of Durante's phone (I dunno why). I'll get back to that point later. Once we got there, we met the kid who's the uncle of the Toad. He challenged Durante to a wizard duel-deal (also kinda childish). Mason offered us up to be killed if Durante lost. Fortunately, our guy won. So he said he'd meet us in LA later. English food was awful.
We were in some Dutch place where I got lost. But I guess Durante and Mason made a deal with some Facet-guy to help us find the Triad. These guys were about to rob a casino in Monaco. So we took a train there and got into position. French food was terrible, too. I just figured out what the Triad was up to when I saw them. I called Durante's cell for back-up, but his phone had no battery. So I had to fight all three of them myself. I did ok for a little while, but at least I managed to make enough noise that Durante and Mason showed up to finish them off after I went down. We took their magic jewels outta their skin (which is where their powers came from, I think) and turned 'em over to some French cops for a reward.
Facet met us at the train station when we were leaving. Mason walked off (I thought to find cover) and I signalled to Durante to help me take him out. But that didn't happen. Facet punched me in the nose and Mason gave him some cruddy-looking copy of our magic jewels and Durante whammied his brain into thinking it was the real thing. When we got off the train in Rome, there he was again. Durante and I took him down, finally and turned him over to an Italian nuthouse for another reward. When we got back to the states, we met Adrian - the ancient adolescent and he went with us to talk to the Toad.
I'd like to write what happened there, but Mason opened his mouth again. Adrian was talking about how he got to LA ahead of us and offered to send me to China. I said "no, thanks" and Mason played the fool. So, I walked around the Great Wall for awhile, tried to find people who spoke English, stopped a crazy lady from killing a chicken and selling it to me, bought some silk PJs and tried to convince some old dude not to carry me on his back. So, after awhile - trying to arrange a flight back to the states wasn't happening -1 just poofed into some sewer with an old Japanese guy living in it.
Ebonfire was the guy there who said he'd help us hunt a vampire. I asked him about the possibility of redemption for them, but he seemed to think we were after the ones beyond help. Also, a lady talked to us about her Dad having defeated the magic thing we were after once. Mason got a book about it. So we walked out of the sewer (ruined my new pjs) and we met some creepy, dead German opera dude -Toastenguy or whatever. He said he'd help us kill the demon-thing. He met back up with us in Delhi, India. I told Mason I didn't wanna eat snakes and he fed some to me anyway.
On the Pakistani border, we found a cave with a bunch of thugee fanatics living in it. Some cyclone-guy tried knifing us all a bunch of times. Toastenguy ripped his face off and scared the thugees to death. I tried to get him to stop that, but very little success. We killed the monster guy, got its blood and turned the spinning guy over to the Indian cops to stop the nuclear war that was about to erupt because of all the murders these guys were doing to incite conflict between the two powers.
We had to get to London to finish of the demon-deal but got delayed in Cairo by a sandstorm. At London's Tower Bridge we found the moss that held the soul of the jitterbug-demon(sp) which we'd forced him to tell us about. I fought a tiger-guy and the demon showed up to stop us with a new load of fanatics. Toastenguy and mason handled them while Durante helped me with the tiger-guy. Durante almost got killed and I knocked the thing into the river. We killed the demon and saved the bridge from the terrorists and got medals.
Now that we have all the stuff (except the vampire ashes we need to get now), we need to find out if the golden girl is on the up-and-up and save the alchemy asshole. Then we'll see if he can do anything to help people and if Mason can understand why we went through all this. Even though he's been a big load of trouble on this mission, he has been useful. I just wonder if he understands my purpose in life and the importance of turning villains back over toward our side. I can't seem to get him to act like a team player, yet. If I can make him understand what I'm about, then I think the rest of the hero community can get behind what I'm doing, too.
Saturday, June 25, 2005
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Secondly, I didn't blow up a factory. The "factory" in question was producing Flame, which is a GOOD thing to get off of the streets, and anyway, we don't know who blew it up. What I can tell you definitely is that it wasn't me.
One further thing you should all know - I will be responding in some manner to this raging jackass. If any of you are going to chastise me for not allowing him to spew hatred against me all over SoCal, do it silently or in writing, because I don't want to hear it. I've stopped arguing with the rest of you about what our goals are. I've conceded that our goal is to arrest criminals and let the courts do their job, and I've only struck out with lethal force when I felt my life was in direct danger. In exchange, I expect that I will be granted some leeway to deal with certain matters in my own way. Just because I don't share your exact moral code does not make me a bad person, and I'm beginning to resent to implication. Hell, I'm not beginning to resent it - I've resented it for quite some time.
Now, if someone has a constructive way to get back at this arsehole, I'm all ears. I don't want to write a letter. I don't want to boycott the Taco King just because it advertises on the station. I don't want to wait the guy out. Steps must be taken.
Thursday, June 16, 2005
And what they oughtta be doing is arresting this guy. Now have you heard what he's been doing? Rumour has it he's been spotted at the scene of THREE recent gang clashes. He blew up a factory for crying out loud! And you know how these pajama types are always fighting each other, well apparently he fought these two mercenary types, I dunno, a brother and sister duo who call themselves Guillotine and Dagger since these freaks can't ever use the names their mother gave them. Anyway, from what I've been told, this Guillotine guy somehow got his neck snapped.
So what do all you liberal pantywaists have to say about that? This is the same guy you all applauded behind your backs for causing a riot last summer, just because he shut down some kind of white power rally because God forbid free speech extend to people we don't like. Well, I have news for you, this Guillotine guy was BLACK. That's right, your Black Panther Party token white boy beat up a whole bunch of black guys this time, and after that he moved right on to beating up Chinese fellas. I don't even want to tell you how many of these are sitting in the hospital right now (on the taxpayers dime, no doubt) with broken this and ruptured that.
I mean, can you believe this? He's shown his true colors alright. He's no better than those neo-nazis he smacked around, hell he's probably worse. He's just another worthless vigilante thug out to get his jollies off by lording it over the rest of us law abiding normal folk. I'll tell you one thing, those guys on the board of supervisors got it right for once, passing that law that makes these costumed clowns have to have insurance if they want to continue to go around blowing up buildings and putting street trash in the hospital. And what do you all think about this bleeding heart liberal councilman, Hewson, who is trying to undo all the County's good work by basically nullifying the new ordinance with a city statute? This guy has always been a little left of center, but come on people...mutants pretty much declared war on this country on September 11th, and this guy wants to give em the key to our city! I'm not saying all mutants are bad, but isn't it better to be safe than sorry? We don't know which ones we can trust and which ones we can't, so I say keep em on a short leash. What do you think?
Let's go to the phones.
Friday, June 10, 2005
We really started to act like a team during this mission. I'll try to highlight that during this report.
"Break down that door" I yelled. Like lightning, Hooligan blasted it, it buckled but did not break. Next, Flea stepped up and tore it from the hinges. We were able to escape whatever fate was prepared for us. We searched the rest of the floor, and ran into a bunch of Chinese Tongs with automatic weapons. We dispatched them pretty easily. I tried to fling one of them into his friends. Well, I flung him alright, but I missed the others and he broke into the elevator and down the shaft. We retrieved him, but he was in bad shape. I talked Hooligan into patching him up, I gave him some story about needing him for interrogation. I'm not sure if he bought it, or if he just did it to shut me up. Need to be careful using my full power on normals.
We went up to the next floor. Found a well stocked surgery. Flea examined some of the chemicals we found, but could not determine much without the proper equipment.
Up to the next floor. Of course the bad guys were waiting for us. There was a whole mess of Tongs, plus a rather interesting cast of villains:
- Salvo: a eurotrash mercenary with a high tech energy rifle
- Speedfreak: can run so fast he's a blur
- Esper: telepathic woman with mind control powers
- Decay: a grotesque monster with the power to decay matter
- Dr. Black: crazed surgeon who seemed to get off on blood
Well, we started off squaring off with Salvo and some tongs. Salvo managed to peg me and flea with some energy blasts, that eventually sent me flying down the stairs. We managed to start pairing down the thugs, until Speedfreak got involved. Not long after I got myself out of the stairs, Salvo was down but so were Hooligan and Flea. I moved to shield them with my TK, to give them a chance to shake off the cobwebs. Speedfreak came back for another pass, I concentrated all my TK into defending us. By this time, the thing called Decay was also closing in on us. Speedfreak ran into my wall of TK force, and about knocked himself out. He seemed unsure after that, and withdrew for a while. Hooligan and Flea managed to get up, and we continued the fight against the thugs and Decay. Soon we could hear Dr. Black and his minions getting ready to leave. I had to send Flea and Hooligan in to try and stop them. I was too busy with Decay. He touched me several times and I could feel my flesh burning. I hammered him as hard as I could, but I wasn't sure he even felt it.
Meanwhile, Hooligan got overwhelmed by Speedfreak and Esper. I managed to catch the speedster with another wall of force, but not fast enough to help out Hooligan. At this point, Dr. Black slashed the throat of his assistant, and inhaled the steam from the blood. He seemed to get stronger, faster, and more crazed. I was getting mauled by Decay. Flea reported that Esper used her powers to get him to sit down and not fight. Dr. Black tried to cut up Hooligan with a scalpel. Good thing he's tough. Flea broke out of the mind control, but Dr. Black used some kind of nasty chemical on him. Buy this time it seemed that Speedster and Black had enough. They started for a fire escape. We were not able to stop them. I was still getting shredded by Decay, luckily Flea recovered and came to help. Working together, we were able to put Decay down, although it took an amazing amount of pounding.
I had taken so much damage from Decay I though it might be the end. We got Hooligan up, and he managed to stabilize the damage.
I looked through what was left of Dr. Black's papers. He didn't manage to destroy all of them. It took me a while to piece together but eventually I figured out the horrible truth. Dr. Black hadn't even put the pieces together. (Pun intended) The parts that caused the flame outs came from a street gang called the Seperoths. After examines all the evidence, it seems like these gangers are all vampires! I know it sounds crazy, and in the past I would never believe it. But all the pieces fit. The vampire organs burst into flames when exposed to sunlight. Seems these vamps got into a fight, took enough damage to go dormant, then were sold to black for parts. We destroyed all the vampire parts and called the L.A.P.D. for the rest.
Learned that this gang hangs out at a club called Tech Noir. Hooligan and Flea asked around. They were offered information if they came to a warehouse that night. Well, of course this smells of a trap, but it was our best lead. Besides, I didn't think they would know we are paranormal.
Hooligan and Flea went to the meeting. I flew in and waited on the roof as backup. This chick who thinks she's in the cast of "Innocent Blood" starts talking:
"You are the group who raided Dr. Blacks operation?"
"What did you do with all of the parts?"
"We let them burn in the sun."
"Good, Ok....kill them."
Suddenly I hear a whole mess of Vampires jump out of the darkness. Yep, stepped right in it again...
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
In other news, it appears that no matter what I do, I will either be short Nigel or Matt for the next session. Therefore I have decided that I will just go ahead and run this thursday for Tim and Nigel, and Matt will just have to suck it. I believe I won't have a Nigel for the next Thursday session, so it's better that way I suppose. It's good that Tim has been keeping such good mission logs, as it means that nobody gets completely left out of the loop.
All this is dependant, of course, on Nigel and Tim still being able to do Thursday. If neither of you two has checked the blog and replied by this evening, I will be calling you. Or rather, will have already called you, from your temporal perspective.
Sunday, June 05, 2005
Vanguard Mission Log:
I still wanted to check out the Flame angle, even though it seemed likely to not be related after out encounter with the Ogouns. Part of me just didn't want Det. Bakerfield to die in vain. I thought of it as following through with his last case.
We approached the "Flame Factory." Flea scouts ahead and confirms that it's active. Hooligan and I crash through a skylight and the game is on. At first there appears to be only your basic thug, but then things get a little weird. This real nasty looking thug grabs the Hooligan by the neck. A couple of headbutts later and it's clear that this thug is some kinda cyborg under his skin. I tried to help the Hooligan out, but I wasn't able to get a grip on him with both of them thrashing about. I was reduced to shouting encouragement. Before I know it, there's this slick looking business man and his wacko looking henchmen who join in. They refer to him as "Mr. Grishom" and he seems to know the Hooligan. He even says "Didn't I kill you?" What a prick. Well he dismisses us, and leaves his henchmen to fight us. I got nailed pretty good by Grishom's goon, and went down. I was able to deflect most of the bullet impact but it stunned me pretty good. We managed to overcome all the enemies, and capture some of the techs.
We examined the office materials. Flea didn't think that Flame, (a fun mix of amphetamines, steroids, and hallucinogen) could cause someone to burst into flames. Damn. Another dead end.
The next thing we know, this weird person drops through the ceiling. I didn't get a great look at him, but he was all black, had no pupils, and seemed to have stars or something all over him. He drops a bomb into the chemicals so we have to evacuate quickly.
I get back to my office the next day, and there's someone named Dawkins waiting to see me. He's from the Institute for Human Advancement. He tries to convince me to support the statute requiring all paranormals to get insurance for property damage. I tell him straight up that I think this bill is nothing but an end run to registering mutants and paranormals. The conversation quickly goes south and he predictable threatens me politically. The next day, there are some protestors in front of my office.
We decide to dig further into the medical records of all the victims. Flea is able to get information that all of the victims had some sort of transplant. Furthermore, they had the transplant not in the hospital, under less than legitimate circumstances. We split up. Flea follows our favorite shady paramedics, while the professor and I go down to the hospital to talk to a doctor. He tells us that these transplants are illegal. He thinks that Dr. Black is behind them, and that the Chinese Tongs might be supplying body parts. Soon after that, Flea calls:
Flea: I followed Mack and Gasser, you'll never guess what they were doing though.
Vanguard: Illegally harvesting organs?
Flea: How did you know that? Well I followed them to China town...
Vanguard: ...to the office of Dr. Black.
Flea: Yeah, I think so, how did you know all of that?
Heh. Just one of the great little moments. Flea has a great idea that maybe it's whatever he's using to stop the organ rejection that might be the source of the combustion. We head on down to this office. After breaking in, we find nothing. Nothing incriminating at all. Yet we saw our favorite two medics come in here. So we look a little harder and find a secret door. Hooligan is able to get past the security door. We enter and underground lab. Suddenly we hear: "What is the password?" I quickly say "Kuata Veratu Nictrr...eh..uh....to.." but that doesn't work. A door slams down and we hear a hissing sound.
To be continued....or maybe not.
We had just dispatched the Mongles when two weird looking folks came up to us. They said they represented the Ogouns and that their leader wanted to see us. After a little talking, we discovered that the leader, "Ignatious," is under the impression that we would like to join him. So we decided to go with them.
I'm asking myself: why did I agree to go with them? It's surely a dangerous situation. I guess I just wanted to get to the bottom of things. Also, the invitation was just so strange. They just came up to us an invited us, because they think we want to join? I had to know what was going on.
We are lead to a walled compound in Downtown L.A. Inside is a scene right out of The Serpent and the Rainbow. (well if you add automatic weapons) There's a bunch of naked degenerates dancing in a drug haze around fire. This ignatious dude is voodoo priest right out of a Hollywood movie. There's also some crazy Merc with a autocannon. Ignatious has your expected femme fatal at his side, all decked out in pointy things ready to be thrown at yours truly. It quickly becomes evident that this Ignatious and his minions are completely nuts. He offers us a spot in his group, which of course I decline.
At this point I had a choice. Start a fight or just get out of there. I started the fight. Sure we were outnumbered, but I felt like they were unorganized, and frankly, second class "bad guys." Still wondering if power is going to my head. This certainly wasn't the best tactical move in the world.
The fight was on. Hooligan delivered his usual brand of mayhem in his extreme style. I got rid of the autocannon guy for a bit, I didn't want to deal with that until we got some of the odds down. As usual, the ace in the hole is The Flea. It just seems that most of these guys can't deal with the unusual combination of powers he possesses. They can't usually hit him, and he hit's real hard. I sparred with Ignatious and the knife chick. We did well, but we fought more like three individuals instead of a team. Fortunately, so did the enemy. We need develop a better feel for each other in combat. Well we had the most trouble with this Cyborg or robot that they brought out. After winning the fight, The Flea captured a girl who was trying to escape. She turns out to be a computer specialist who was trying to get away from the Ogouns. Her name is Laura, her online handle is Wytoka. We agree to let her go if she gives us all the information we need to put away the Ogouns. She agreed. After examining the evidence, it appears that Ignatious was not behind the burnings, although he was crazy enough to think he was. After all that, a red herring. But at least the Ogouns won't be bothering anyone for a while.
Let's see. Game log reminder again, after this week we should be rejoining the whole group. Things have gone very well, I almost hate to join you guys again! It's been very good for character development I think, because everyone gets a bit more screen time in the smaller groups and I can concentrate more on individual interests.
I still want to do the History thing, so next weekend, Saturday (or Sunday if people would rather) I will hold a barbeque at my parent's chateau to which you are all invited as long as you bring some paper, pencils, some meat to grill and some beer to share. I will provide side dishes, soda, dessert, stuff like that. Say around 3pm? Please let me know.
Finally, the Thursday group is on Monday again this week, unless Nigel says he can't.
Thursday, June 02, 2005
Who was Adam the son of? See Luke 3:38
Does God have an opposite? See Exodus 3:14 and Ephisians 4:4-6
How many sons of God are there? Romans 8:14-17
Are the sons of God also gods? John 10:34
Are any sons of God less than others? Colossians 3:4
What is the goal of prophets and teachers? Ephisians 4:11-13
How many minds are there? Deuteronomy 4:39 and Exodus 3:14
What is a human being? Genesis 1:26
Is mankind finished or in process? John 3:2
How much can we and should we attempt? John 14:12
What is the purpose of life and consciousness? 2 Corinthians 9:8 and Luke 12:32
What is the next step? Romans 8:19