Elsewhere Thread.   Posted by The Panopticon.Group: 0
The Panopticon
 GM, 5 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 22:52
Elsewhere Thread
A thread for IC happenings outside the scope of the player characters.
The Panopticon
 GM, 16 posts
Fri 8 Apr 2016
at 16:21
Around the City
The crowd was wild this evening.  Already blood had been shed, and a few of the combatants had been taken out in body bags.  Now they were getting the chance to see the champion fight.

The announcer stepped forward.  And now, for tonight's main event!  First, as a reward for managing to take down Storm Hammer last week, I give you Elias Corwin!

The crowd cheered, though it was a little subdued.  Even as the somewhat disheveled man came out to the ring, wearing simple pants, and a sleeveless overcoat, the announcer turned to the champion.

And his opponent:  The reigning champion, a warrior with over twenty kills to his name, and a reputation for... other work!  I give you Razor!

A pause, as the cyborg walked into the arena.  He wore combat gear, but was nearly completely covered in an armor frame.  Despite the fact that his opponent was unarmed, Razor rested his hands on his twin hand-scythes.

Across the city, in a lab functioning joint research project for Atherton Industries (an NWO Subsidiary), Inc. and Vulkan Heavy Arms (an Iteration X Company), the project was coming to a head, but not as the scientists running it had hoped.  Even as the energy of the particle accelerator was climbing, the apparatus began failing.  Doctors Hector Erhlson and Cassandra Rodriguez began evacuating their assistants.

The fight began.  Corwin ran in, successfully dodging a fast strike from his opponent.  He lashed out, landing a hard, muay thai kick right on Razor's leg.  The strike barely slowed the cyborg down, and the cyborg's response, a rapid knife-hand strike to the heart, left Corwin back on his heels and bleeding.  Glad that he had avoided the fatal strike, he tried a desperate rush.

Razor sidestepped the attack, and kicked at Corwin's foot.  Even as Corwin stumbled, Razor positioned himself.  As his opponent regained his footing a few feet away, Razor extended both arms, and twin wired hooks shot out of his wrists.  They embedded in Corwin's forearm and shoulder.

With a vicious tug, he drew Corwin in, and landed a hard kick right in the un-augmented warrior's ribs.  Smiling underneath his helmet, he drew the twin hand-scythes as Corwin stumbled back again.

I don't know what drove you to accept this fight.  Maybe you just wanted to die.  In which case, I will gladly give you what you desire.

Back at the lab, the two doctors fought on with the accelerator, trying, but unable, to stop a catastrophic meltdown.

Corwin smiled at the cyborg, and then charged anyways.  Everyone knew that money was difficult to come by, and a fight like this could earn someone enough to get step up.  Even as he attacked, Razor deftly countered his strikes, and then, after a quick twist, opened Corwin's wrist with one blade while driving the other into his chest.

Corwin dropped unceremoniously.  Razor stood back and shook his head as the announcer came into the ring to count.


Corwin tried to move, and failed.  Even as he felt everything begin to go dark, a voice spoke from that very same encroaching darkness.

I know what drives you.  And I know that it does not have to end here.


Corwin again tried to pull himself to his feet, but his body just would not respond.

You have the potential to set the pendulum loose, to bring down the tyrants who oppress you.  Death need not be the answer... at least for you.

Barely able to speak, he tried to respond.  Neither the announcer or his opponent heard him.

What are you?  Why bother with a dying man?

The announcer counted yet again.  Three!

The darkness laughed as it replied.  Dying?  Oh, no.  If you accept what I am offering, you will be beyond death.


Corwin again tried to move, but failed.  Razor just shook his head.


You think you are insane?  A dying man, unable to comprehend that reality has changed.  If you but look beyond the veils of time and apathy, you will see that I am the only truly real thing in this moment.


At the lab, both doctors began to run for the exits themselves, too late.  The accelerator exploded, sending a large column of light to the sky, parting the clouds, and a shockwave of cosmic energy throughout the city.


Razor laughed ruefully.  It's academic now.

Corwin asked the voice a simple question: And what will this gift cost me?


Nothing, really.  I require souls for sustenance, but timing... timing is immaterial.  And the souls need not be yours, or even taken in the traditional sense.  You will understand over time.  Now, do you want the power to grasp the freedom you have always desired?

Even as the wave passed through the arena, affecting Razor and one other, Corwin agreed.  The announcer started the final count, Elias Corwin pulled himself to his feet.  His wounds slowly began closing.  Razor, realizing the tables had turned, charged immediately.  This time, Elias countered each strike.  As the blades scythed out, Corwin struck at the weak points at Razor's joints.

His hands became a blur, and he drove Razor back, countering each attack with a strike designed to further break down the cyborg.  Finally, a few minutes later, Razor collapsed, unable to stand, and barely able to move.  He looked up at his would-be victim, and could sense the darkness flowing.

How?  You were dead.  You should have bled out by now.

Corwin smiled.

I will show you.  Once we are done this evening, you should come with me.  There is much work that needs to be done.

At Central Command, high over the now-hidden Washington Historical District, Brenda Atherton stared out over the city, sensing all the new power signatures.  She turned to the commanding officers of city's various law enforcement divisions.

Find out what happened.  Now.

The officers saluted, and then went to set the search in motion.  As the center cleared, a bald asian man in a white suit stepped up behind Brenda.  She turned and glared at him, but he did not waver.  Instead he smiled, even as Mrs. Atherton sighed.

You were right.  There are more now.  I'll need you to start getting real information on who... changed... and what they are capable of.

She paused, and then smiled evilly.

Talk to Masokki of the yakuza.  I'll handle searching through official channels.  Now, go.

Ryu just inclined his head.  Very well, Chosen of the Darkness.  I will return when I have more information.  Do I have permission to call upon the Penitents if the new Immortals become a problem?

The evil smile just grew wider.

Of course.  Though they still only respond to the Purified or myself.  Use whatever resources you need.

With another nod, Toyotomi Ryu, Knight Adamant of House Toyotomi of the Imperium of Shadows, turned and walked away to begin his search.

This message was last edited by the GM at 21:49, Thu 12 May 2016.

The Panopticon
 GM, 19 posts
Thu 12 May 2016
at 22:12
Five Years Ago
Primal energy sensors across the Columbia-Baltimore Metropolitan Area blared, causing the Technocratic Authority to begin mobilizing to hunt a Reality Deviant.

High above the slums south of the Columbia archology, the dimensional rift was already closing.  A man fell, still dazed from both the attack that had sent him flying and the passage through the rift.

As he came to, he realized he was approaching the ground at a fast pace.  Reaching to a holster on the small of his back, he drew forth a shadowsteel dagger that first expanded into a spear, and then unfurled wings and handles to become a glider.  The man, a wiry man of average height and asian descent, wore clothing of woven shadow that was styled like cross between a paramilitary commando and a classical ninja.  He wore bracers of shadow that hid collapsed war fans, and had numerous shuriken and bombs.  Even as he searched for a place to land, he concentrated, shifting the appearance of his garb and gear to be that of normal materials rather than the Artifacts that they were.

Ryu found an alley, and dipped the glider into it.  Still far above the ground, he collapsed the glider to a spear and then to the dagger form in a practiced motion, and had it holstered even before he reached the first handhold he would use to slow his momentum.  Gusts of air slowed him down further, and he landed lightly on the pavement.  Without hesitation, he slipped into the obscurity of the street, well before the hunters arrived.

Less than half an hour later, and now in clothing more appropriate to the locale, Toyotomi Ryu approached a group of yakuza who were just wrapping up a mugging.  Ryu sighed as he regarded the collapsed civilian.  Then he strode forward, addressing the thugs.

Pardon me, gentlemen.  I seek an audience with your boss's boss.  Would you be kind enough to arrange that for me?

The thugs turned and stared at Ryu, and then started laughing.  The leader stepped forward, and, trying to be intimidating, began twirling his butterfly knife.  Ryu was not impressed, and did not hide that fact.

The chief thug laughed again.  And why would I do that?

Ryu smiled patiently, and responded politely, though with an undertone of insult.

Because I asked nicely?  And because if you do not, I cannot guarantee that you will leave here uninjured?

The thug turned to his men, who, recognizing the intent in their boss's eyes, began moving to flank the upstart.

Here that, guys?  -He- cannot guarantee -our- safety... let's fix that for him...

This message was last edited by the GM at 22:42, Thu 12 May 2016.

The Panopticon
 GM, 20 posts
Wed 18 May 2016
at 22:19
Von Mellethin Mansion, Present Day
The scene was chaos.  Swarms of police and agents were going over every inch of the elder vampire's mansion.  In his office, Erik von Mellethin fumed with barely contained rage, the twin autocannons of the two HIT Marks and the cold gaze of one of the Technocracy's deadly Men in Black being more than enough to keep the boiling fury contained.  The questions regarding his smuggling operations were galling enough, but to have to refer to the events that brough the current inquisition as a simple horse sale...

Outside, the agents in charge of the surveillance of the mansion were working on their reports, and looking forward to their promotions.  The search had uncovered documents showing that von Mellethin had been planning to assassinate the Columbia District Board of Directors and much of the command echelon.

They nearly jumped out of their skin when Ryu spoke up behind them.

You two screw-ups were the agents in charge, correct?  I have some questions.

The men turned in their seats, and the younger of the pair shifted nervously.  Ryu stood impassive, wearing a white suit, and staring daggers at both men. The older agent replied cautiously.

Yes, sir.  Is there something wrong with our preliminary report?

Ryu smiled, which only gave the impression of more danger.  Your surveillance was executed, for the most part, with great skill, and the von Mellethin case will be entirely resolved shortly.

The agent nodded, and the younger of the pair began to relax.  Ryu continued, letting an undercurrent of steel into his voice.

The problem I am running into is the data concerning the energy spikes during the incident which allowed us cause to enter his facility.  It is incomplete, and disturbing.

Another slight pause, and Ryu's smile died.  The tone dropped another few degrees.

Did you really let nearly all of your equipment get destroyed by an unknown Reality Deviant?  You better include that in your report, as well as a thorough explanation.

The two men both nodded, and the older agent replied promptly.

Yes, sir.  We will, sir.

Ryu nodded, and neither man hid his sigh of relief that that line of questioning was over.  Ryu smiled again, this time without the menace.

Now, we will deal with von Mellethin.

This message was lightly edited by the GM at 22:20, Thu 23 June 2016.

The Panopticon
 GM, 21 posts
Sat 25 Jun 2016
at 22:29
Atherton Induestries, Present Day
Brenda Atherton surveyed the damage to the building, anger simmering at a low boil.  One of the Agents managing the scene walked up to her, then hesitated a moment before reporting.

Ma'am.  Mr. Oveiroa has already scrubbed all footage of the... elf.  IT is planning on running with the usual excuses... terrorist bombing, the War.  Some disturbed fanatic trying to gain access to paradise through suicide.  A body is being procured and history is being rewritten as we speak.

Mrs. Atherton nodded absently.

Fine, fine.

Before the Agent walked off, he hesitated again, then spoke up.

Mrs. Atherton... what do you want done about the Reality Deviant?  We have had no new leads.

Mrs. Atherton leveled a withering glare at the Agent, and then, much to his relief, smiled.

I have that under control.  I am assembling a special task force for just this sort of incident and Deviant.  It is all under control.

The Agent nodded, then, realizing his was dismissed, he turned and went back to work.
Elias Corwin
 NPC, 1 post
Sat 2 Jul 2016
at 18:07
Just Another Day at the Office
2 PM Saturday, the day after the riots at the Columbia District Arcology, Atherton Industries HQ.

The coroner, a surprisingly young looking woman with dark hair, some piercings, and some tattoos well hidden under her lab uniform, and her assistant, a heavy-set older man, his face covered in a messy beard reached the morgue.  They bantered back and forth, though the coroner did admit her surprise that there had been only one fatality the previous day.

Once in the room, the assistant prepared a gurney and their tools as the coroner double-checked the autopsy request.  With a shrug, she told her assistant to open locker A-11, which held the body in question.  Together, they slid the body bag out onto the table, and the coroner spoke into the recorder.

We are now preparing to autopsy and hopefully identify subject A-11, who precipitated both thoughtcrime and then subsequently a riot upon the district.  This autopsy has been requested to determine how the subject was able to withstand the forces he did before expiring.

With that said, the assistant opened the body bag, and then fainted as the subject looked at him, smiled and then sat up.  Elias then turned to the coroner who was now quiet and just staring at her unexpectedly not-dead corpse.  Elias put a finger to his lips, signalling her to stay quiet, then slipped off the table.  The coroner just nodded quietly as he left.

Moments later, he was walking through the building, the shadowsilk of his clothing now rewoven to appear as a security guard's uniform.  Touching the commlink in his ear, he spoke quietly.

Alright, Razor.  I'm in.  Are the cameras successfully gimmicked?

Through the commlink, Razor replied, Affirmative.  Due to all the backdoors in this place, this was easier than I thought it'd be.  The target office should be clear for the next hour or so, too.  You will have to keep moving as I handle each camera, though.... go, now.

Nodding, and carrying himself with a near-unstoppable self-assurance, Corwin began making his way to the target office.  Following the directions given by his hacker, he made his way to the top floor, easily avoiding unwanted attention.  As he reached the hallway to the needed office, he paused, and then stood at attention as a dark-haired woman in a business walked by, a scowl on her face, followed by a trio of actual security guards.

After the danger passed, he made it to the office of Brenda Atherton, CEO of Atherton Industries.  As he reached the door, Razor unlocked it, and Corwin nonchalantly entered.  Moving to the computer, he slipped a putty-like shard of shadowsteel into one of the computer's ports.  As the block molded itself to make the needed connection, the computer screen flickered, and then, even though it was off, legible black text and schematics flowed across.  Corwin watched, memorizing all of the information as it passed by.

I think we hit the jackpot.  Razor... can you confirm the existance and location of the documents?

Razor, scanning over the documents as the data was copied (through a near-literal dark net) to his computer, waited a moment before replying.

Not yet.... but we have many terabytes to copy... be patient.  You should have time.  I'm keeping an eye out on the boss lady, just in case her doctor's appointment runs short.

Minutes passed, and still the information flowed.  Through the building's cameras, Razor monitored the ongoing meeting between Mrs. Atherton and Dr. Rodriguez.

Ok... data's coming along nicely, Eli.  I was wrong, though.  Boss lady's seeing the doctor, but not as a patient.  Looks like she's chewing the good doctor out about yesterday.  Also - just heard from Zhen Li.  The getaway car is already in the garage.

Corwin nodded, still scanning and memorizing data, as even the information not critical to the mission would likely be useful later.  Additional plans were already forming.  Suddenly, Razor chipped in again.

Hot damn, Eli.  Found them.  I don't know how you knew that these even existed... but we have them.  There's a hidden 'historical' district underneath the Techno's 3 arcologies... the documents you want are being held... looks like in a building called the Library of Congress.

Corwin smiled, then moved to the door, and then waited.

Excellent.  Keep copying all the data you can, though.  We'll need every bit of it to overthrow the Technocratic Authority.

Razor replied almost immediately, as Corwin saw the smoke from the shadowsteel thumb drive dissolving.

Sorry, Eli.  I'm pulling the plug.  Boss lady somehow is already nearly to her office.  Get out of there, now.

Corwin slipped out of the office, and the door closed and then turned to walk away right as Brenda Atherton turned the corner.  He came to a stop and saluted.  She nodded, a perturbed expression on her face.  As she reached the door to her office, she paused, then glanced at the guard.

What do you think you're doing?  This hallway is obviously secure, and not only are we shipping out the chip today, some Agents are bringing in another Reality Deviant.  Get moving.

Corwin nodded.  Yes, ma'am.

Turning, he headed back downstairs.  Once clear of the 'boss lady', he spoke up, a sly grin on his face.

Slight change of plans, Razor.  Zhen Li did grab something with some passenger space, right?
Brenda Atherton
 NPC, 1 post
Sat 2 Jul 2016
at 18:34
The Doctor's Appointment
Doctor Cassandra Rodriguez was sitting at her computer, just staring at the screen.  Despite her easy familiarity with the physics (buttressed by her now much more intimate knowledge of kinetic manipulation and cosmic energy theory), she wasn't really seeing the equations and numbers.  She shook her head, and rubbed her temples, trying to compose herself for the upcoming meeting.

Right on time, the door to her office opened, and Director Atherton stepped into the room.  Trying to hide her fear and worry, Dr. Rodriguez stood up and greeted her boss.

Director.  Please, come in and have a seat.

Nodding, the Director sat down on the most comfortable chair in the room.  Dr. Rodriguez took a seat at a chair next to her.

Director... I understand if I didn't -

Director Atherton cut off the doctor in mid-sentence.  Be quiet.  This is not official censure, yet.

Cassandra swallowed nervously and nodded as the Director continued.

In fact, I am willing to forgive a lot based on past performance and proven loyalty.  However... I expect my orders, and the orders of Agent Toyotomi, to be followed exactly.

Cassandra nodded, once again getting worried for herself and her future.

But... Director... that was a kid.  She was maybe ten or twelve years old.

The Director scowled, causing Cassandra to quit speaking immediately.

I said exactly, and I meant exactly.  Remember, despite your changes - the power, your... enhanced physique... those silly ears -

Cassandra self-consciously touched her ears, which had become pointed after the accident as her hearing had improved, and shifted uncomfortably under the scrutiny.

- that you and Doctor Erhlson are officially sanctioned by the Technocratic Authority.  If you become a problem, that will be taken away, and you could easily find yourself stuck behind a desk pushing paper - not even real research - or worse.

Cassandra nodded again, worried, and having a fairly good idea what the 'or worse' actually meant.  Director Atherton then smiled, shifting easily to a friendlier tone.

Cassandra... relax.  You did well.  I know you're not a front-line agent, and that yesterday was out of your comfort zone.  I understand.

The Director waited until Cassandra began calming down before continuing.

I'm going to move up your weekly psychiatrist appointment to Monday, and set things so you will see her three times a week until you're better.  It's not much consolation, but you're a combat agent now, which means you get the same benefits for dealing with things like Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Cassandra nodded again.

Thank you... Brenda.

The Director got up and then made her way to the door.  At the door, she paused, and checked her smart-phone.  She turned back to the still-shaken doctor.

Good news.  Doctor Erhlson is recovering well.  He is still in the infirmary, but he should be back on his feet by tomorrow, and fully recovered in just a few days.  You can visit him tonight.

Cassandra nodded her thanks, and then the Director left.
The Panopticon
 GM, 28 posts
Wed 29 Mar 2017
at 01:13
A Falling Out
Damien Moreau, Director of Finance for the Washington-Baltimore Metropolitan Area and CEO of a number of Syndicate-run and financed banks, looked up in surprise as a well-dressed older man entered his office.

And who are you?  Who let you in here?

The man smiled as he responded.

To answer your first question - Thomas Archibald, Esquire.  We had a business transaction that was unsatisfactorily resolved in the not too distant past.  As to your second... no one.  An associate of mine has seen to your security.  Do not bother reaching for that weapon.

Moreau stopped in mid-movement, his hand mere inches from an NWO-issue Enforcer firearm.

The lawyer walked forward, and set a piece of paper onto Moreau's desk.

In a moment, you will sign that contract, and then follow it's instructions exactly.  But first, you really should read what you are agreeing to.

Still glaring at the interloper, Moreau struggled to make a further move towards his gun.  After a moment, he looked down at the contract.  As he finished reading it, he turned his increasingly hateful gaze upwards towards the lawyer.

You can't be serious.  First, delete all of the intel related to the Historical District operation, then, transfer ten million dollars to that account?  And finally, walk to the balcony, climb onto the railing, then jump?  I don't know what kind of person you think I am, but I will not-

In mid-tirade, Archibald smiled, an oddly toothy grin which went unseen by the office's security cams.

Sign it.

Moreau froze, then, moving mechanically, he signed the contract.  Still looking somewhat dazed, he deleted all copies of the requested files, and made a call to his bank.  With a little bit of finagling, the money transfer was complete.  Moreau then stood up, and walked to the door to his office's balcony.  As he walked to the edge and started climbing on the railing, he managed to glare back at the lawyer in his office.

Who are you?

Archibald smiled again.

No one you need concern yourself with ever again.  Now, go ahead and jump.

Moreau shot the intruder one more hateful glare, and then leaped.  A moment later, he found he could control himself, much to his dismay and terror.  With a scream and sickening crack, he hit the ground.

Thomas Archibald, Esquire, turned around and walked out of the office, making sure to be seen by every security camera in the building.  He stopped and waved at a hulking red figure that was in the process of literally disarming the last security guard, then casually sauntered out of the complex.  The monster disappeared in a glimmer of light.

This message was last edited by the GM at 21:58, Wed 29 Mar 2017.