Tales of justice First World Problems

First World Problems

Disaster / Destruction

2006
5/2
2006
28/2

Limited Series: First World Problems
 

During real world gathering ChipCon 2012, the PCs play the villains for a very special adventure.


Dr. Jean-Claude Gironde and Dr. Tafey Anne Sinjin-Gironde finally set a date for their wedding! On Superbowl Sunday when crowds should be low, Mirabelle Sinjin went shopping at the mall for the perfect daughter-of-the-bride dress, and Gironde School Counselor Jarissa Paxton went along as a bodyguard (and to get away from wedding preparations). They were attacked by European supervillain team Catastrophe, who successfully kidnapped both women despite Team Luthor Heavy Troopers getting involved (because the whole thing initially looked like this was an assault on Lex Luthor).
 
Feral's unconscious body was tossed into a Dumpster outside the mall, Mirabelle was delivered successfully to the middleman who was paying Catastrophe, and both women vanished for years.
 

Behind the scenes: villain machinations

 
Lex Luthor arranged for professional middleman Simon Kincaid to hire a kidnap-for-hire crew who could be guaranteed to disappear after the job, not just from Metropolis but from all of North America. Luthor's goal was to "rescue" his business rival's dependent as a publicity coup, after a suitable period of clandestine business activity while the head of Phoenix Industries was distracted. If he could push Jean-Claude Gironde toward retirement, that would be wonderful ... but it was enough, for Luthor's purposes, to have Gironde publicly owe Luthor a personal favor, and to have current and future DARPA contracts question the Phoenix Industries security arrangements.
 
Simon Kincaid, ex-intelligence agent, enemy of SAFEGUARD, did not fall off a turnip truck yesterday. He recognized that Luthor would need a scapegoat with enough connection to the crime that "Capes and Cowls" investigators would be satisfied. With the mercenary team acquired from out of country and promptly returned there, the money trail would stop at their direct employer ... himself.
 
In his research for this contract, Kincaid caught a rumor that Casanova von Frankenstein -- who, back in summer of 2000, offered a bounty on information about Kraven the Hunter, the "silver speedster", and the "cat of Metropolis". Here is a cat from Metropolis! Kincaid sets up a tidy little deal, making clear that this is an unexpected benefit of another transaction that just fell into his lap, so he cannot be bothered to ask for very much.
 
Team Luthor brings the cat in the Dumpster to Mr. Luthor, who is absolutely flabbergasted that his minions fail to note the difference between "sleek, gray-furred, elegant noncombatant" versus "Feral, that is Feral, she has rosettes and a tail, she has a bloody reputation and a lack of style and an even greater lack of value in ransom." Annoyed, Luthor tells his minions to get rid of the beast in fifteen minutes and justify their salary while they're at it. Using a conveniently timed hydroponic shipment for cover, Luthor Technologies junior executive Sebastien Mallory contacts the Orion Club representative in nearby Blüdhaven and sells tranquilized Feral "in current condition, no warranty" to them.
 
Casanova von Frankenstein receives his new purchase the next day. This is a gray tabby. Greased Lightning, remind me, was the Metropolis Cat a gray tabby? No? I did not think so. How much did we pay that Kincaid person? Oh, well, that's not a terrible loss. Cats eat fish. Feed it a fish while I go attend to business.
 
The men of Catastrophe, The Wrecking Crew, by whatever name they may be known in the decadent West, arrive safe in their home village. Again they have been victorious. Again they have been paid, and well. Again they have brought good things back to their people, as warlords do. During their voyage, they destroyed all materials which might link them directly to this "Metropolis" place in the Americas. The armor and clothing that they wear on these missions is stored in an anonymous lockbox in a farm near the coast of the North Sea. They will remember that Simon Kincaid pays his debts without fuss or prompting. They will remember that the power armor of "Team Luthor" is the tool of an earnest but unwise opponent.
 
The Orion Club's medical tests determined that their prisoner has a regenerative ability that is not bad, but nothing else on the current acquisition list. This is not worth the trouble to smuggle the subject to Perth. We have an alternate revenue source for subjects who do not suit our own needs: a buyer whose purchases are reliably never seen again. If we transport the subject to Vibora Bay, Therakiel will broker a sale for a modest commission.
 
Frankenstein notices again, after two weeks, that he has a frustrated catgirl in a cage. She is not the sort of cat which a villain can stroke while cackling evilly. She says she is worth some money if she is allowed to make a phone call. This is not worth the time of a von Frankenstein! He trades the gray tabby to Intergang for a shipping container full of "party favors", and he forgets she ever existed.
 
In Vibora Bay, Therakiel discovers that the leopard woman knows how to fight. He loses a finger in the process of this discovery. Keeping the leopard under control is going to use up his supply of Vertigo too fast to allow a profit. He hastily includes the leopard in a small batch of captured metahumans and sells the lot to a Dragoon along with a shipping container full of scrap metal from a junkyard, in return for industrial-grade tourmaline and very large synthetic zincite crystals (used by Therakiel in his ongoing con, and by some Genius inventors when a vacuum tube won't do).
The Dragoon takes her lot to the designated location. When a portal between realities is about to open, she makes certain all of the prisoners are unconscious: they must not know that they have left their native Earth.
 
Lex Luthor makes sure a reporter overhears him in a "private" conversation with Sebastien Mallory. Mallory reports that the latest batch of tips on the search for "Miss Sinjin" have all turned out false. Luthor nods gravely. He tells Mallory to keep the search going, but quietly: we don't want to spook her captors into any rash action.
 
Intergang is in the middle of a quiet war against Blockbuster in Blüdhaven. One of his favorite tactics is to get a location of a storehouse for Intergang property, tip off law enforcement, then send a minion months later to buy the non-chemical assets at police auction. Intergang finds out that a New Jersey warehouse is about to be raided with barely two hours to act. They can't erase ownership of the warehouse in this short a timeframe, but they can relocate all the truly incriminating goods if they have a "Flash Sale".
Arcade loves these "Flash Sales". He would send Blockbuster a flower bouquet if he weren't trying to avoid any association with Widow's Peak. He picks up various "props and extras" for his current construction project, none of the drugs, few of the traditional firearms, plenty of the other stuff; and he adds the "really angry nerdy catgirl" to his purchase on impulse.
 
---
 
Wyldfire will manage to track some of this down over the course of the next 2 years, but the trails are hard to follow even after Wyldfire realizes that the ladies had been split up early on.

Related Location
About Earth 1
Related timelines & articles
Feral (article)
Phoenix Industries (article)
Tales of Justice Timeline
NYC (article)
Vibora Bay and region (article)
Metropolis (article)