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Shared world fictional superheroic sort of thing follows.

"Puripuri puripuri... Bang!"
Okay here's the chatlog.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Real-world reality hiccup, and all the players on X server at x time turn into their current toons. Someone on the character select screen is in for a world of pain
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: ouch
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: I only hope I'd land in my 50
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: it would suck to land in a lvl 1 alt
[The Legendary] Foxboy: then of course you'd wind up with the ZOMG Supers reaction form the various Gov'ts
[The Legendary] valles: ...establishing identities...
[The Legendary] valles: ...learning feminine hygiene...
[The Legendary] valles: ...all -sorts- of fun stuff.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: it would suck even more to land in a Huge body or one with wings
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: what secret identity?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And havingthe Government realize that each of these individuals is an "army of one"
[The Legendary] valles: On the other hand, the hotness quotient of the geek sector of society would increase drastically.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And of course power effects would hinge on RP description, not the limitations of the hardware/software
[The Legendary] Foxboy: For example, If I wound up as Nogi, the ninja would be Kunoichi rhater than Generic ninja
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: sorta reminds me of the series finale of Buffy, but with all geeks, not just women
[The Legendary] valles: Ooh. I like that thought.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Let's see, say Virtue server at 10 pm eastern
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: next bully that tries to beat up a geek gets a BIG surprise
[The Legendary] valles: Well, 'slong as they'd played CoH.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Blitzing Galaxy Adjutant.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Another thing....
[The Legendary] Foxboy: You'd definitely have heroic villains and villainous heroes
[The Legendary] valles: Yup.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Cause it would be the total JERKS online as well as the decent folks.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: oh maaaaannnnnnn
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: a thought
[The Legendary] valles: Like, if somebody who'd be D&D 'Lawful Good' happened to be playing their Stalker or Brute...
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Imagine some ofthe PVP jerks with the powers ofa level 50 blapper.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: anyone that made a sucky character on purpose would SO regret it
[The Legendary] Foxboy: But. A sucky character in Game is AWESOME irl
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: imagine being stuck as "Yaoi Boy"?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: oog
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: I'd love to be stuck as Skye or Jacob.
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Skye moreso than Jacob, people hate Jacob.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: I could handle being Nadir or Jimmy
[The Legendary] valles: Well, I doubt there'd be anything making you answer to the toon's name or stay in their costume.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: unless the costume is part of you, though, but yeah, true
[The Legendary] Foxboy: nope, but the fact that "real clothes" tend to get severely damaged in superbattles....
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: ...means I hope more women wear casual!
[The Legendary] valles: As Caitlin Fairchild was all too happy to demonstrate.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And the 8-foot and 4-foot huges....
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: the governments would REALLY freak at the Kheldians
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: and so would the average person
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Especially Japanese schoolgirls
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: *snark*
[The Legendary] valles: ...
[The Legendary] valles: BWAHAHAHAHAHAA!
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Of which there would be a MUCH larger population
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: heh: "THAT IS NOT KAWAII!!"
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Skye's/My tail would still be a chick magnet. Tongue
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And of course the catgirls
[The Legendary] valles: I'd almost certainly be buying my first bra.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: whew.... real glad I only play male chars
[The Legendary] valles: I have, like, -two- characters that don't use the female model.
[The Legendary] valles: One of them is explicitly a dimensionally-displaced me.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And only one of those is male in personality
[The Legendary] valles: The other is a girl in a gian warbot.
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: If I ended up as Jacob it still wouldn't be so bad.
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Sure, not as attractive or even remotely good.
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: But, well, he's a freakin' -god-.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Then of course there'd be the HEAVY RP'ers who'd snap
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: heh
[The Legendary] valles: 'When someone asks if you're a god...]
[The Legendary] Foxboy: YOU SAY YES!
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: that'd be half of the new heroes job... stopping the ones that can't handle the change
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: There is only Zuul.
[The Legendary] valles: Anyway...
[The Legendary] valles: I really think that there'd only be the one character I'd really be bothered to end up as.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: What would be hilarious is that the non-pvp builds taking out the 00b3r l33+ pvp builds due to usage of real-world physics
[The Legendary] valles: Oooh. Yes, i like that thought.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: I could really handle being Jimmy Amp... i can think of so many applications of being able to generate megawatts of electricity
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Hm? You mean 'Panzer?
_Snip a tangent_
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Then of course you have the folks who MISS the "event"
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And.. the GM who was playing Ghost Widow in pocket D looking perplexed over their own cooling corpse...
[The Legendary] valles: Whether or not they orginally played the game.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: yup
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: hey all
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Greets!
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: hey Para
[The Legendary] valles: The game is going to switch our brains out, Para!
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: heh
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: Dare I ask?
[The Legendary] valles: The plot bunny under discussion is that, one fine night, everyone playing CoX...
[The Legendary] Foxboy: at a specific time/server
[The Legendary] valles: ...suddenly becomes their character. Still in the real world, but with all powers, abilities, and appearances associated therunto.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: We still haven't decided what happens to someone on the character select screen
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: ..red pill or blue?
[The Legendary] valles: My vote is, 'They end up in the character they'd played most off of that server.'
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Yeah.
[The Legendary] valles: Server selecting folks are just SOL.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: agreed there
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: then I'd probably land in my 50
[The Legendary] Foxboy: So it would take the highest level toon for someone selecting
[The Legendary] valles: Unless one of their others had spent most of their time exemping, paying off debt, or just roleplaying, yeah, probably.
[The Legendary] valles: The other questions are...
[The Legendary] valles: Which one would you most want to be? Or -least-?
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: easy for me... most, Nadir or Jimmy, least, Sherman Abrams (he doesn't have a body ATM)
[The Legendary] valles: In my case, the answers are probably Kara for the first and Seelepanzer for the second.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: My least on Virtue? Happy Grin
[The Legendary] valles: ...oog.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: He wears the mask for a REASON
[The Legendary] valles: No, he'd be -bad-.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And the catgirl allergy
[The Legendary] Foxboy: I mean setting a building on fire because Suzie put on a pair of fake ears?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Not cool
[The Legendary] valles: Panzer is, y'know, a robot. Which'd suck.
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: being paradoxe would suck, seeing as, you know, he's got an MPD
[The Legendary] valles: And except for Kara and The Other Me, all the others are 5' 6" or less.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Hm. I think mental effect would also depend on how heavily roleplayed the character is
[The Legendary] valles: So, if it happened -right this second-...
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Wide
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: Para would probably be constantly having a conversation with the sword
[The Legendary] valles: Foxboy would start watching a lot more football.
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: appearing one-sided to everyone else
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: heheh
[The Legendary] valles: And my temper would get distinctly nastier.
[The Legendary] valles: 'Cause, Sky's a nice girl, but...
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: Um, Paradoxe's MPD is that the Hero *is* the alternate personality. His secret ID is the 'host' personality.
[The Legendary] valles: She -is- one of your classic Redheads.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Right. If it happened while I was on Nogi, I'd be fluent in archaic Japanese
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: the sword has little to do with it
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: yeah, but just thinking how it'd manifest if you became that and retained your own self IRL
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: true
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: If I happened to be Skye I'd be an unkillable spirit. >.>
[The Legendary] valles: Powergamer. ^_^
[The Legendary] Foxboy: I'd feel bad for the GM who was Running GW for a Pocket D event
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: One way to look at it.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: But... her job would be GUARANTEED
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Despite being technically dead
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: And if you wanna be REALLY technical, undead.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Also, fifties may find that they get the rest of their pool powers after a few months fighting the PVP greifers
[The Legendary] Foxboy: I picture THEM as arc one baddies
[The Legendary] Foxboy: With the feds as arc two
[The Legendary] Jimmy Amp: cya back a bit later, I gotta get some stuff done and my PC needs a reboot anyway
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Later Jimmy
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Gah, I can see it now. Someone in garish random costume because he got genericced running around going "It's like a mayhem mish, and I'm a hero! This PWNZ0RS!" and causing SEVERE property damage as a FOTM build.
[The Legendary] valles: Severe property damage..
[The Legendary] valles: Hm.
[The Legendary] valles: Anything fire.
[The Legendary] valles: Earth controllers.
[The Legendary] valles: Deeply RPed Brutes.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And REAL cops/military is what, level 20 max?
[The Legendary] valles: ...wait.
[The Legendary] valles: ...what happens to MMs?
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: I win.
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: I mean
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Um.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Depends on how they RP their powers
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Well
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Jacob pulls his chosen through from his own dimension.
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: He acts as both a god and a rift between worlds.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Nogi's ninja are nebulously magical
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: And Gang War, well, he throws his gate wide open and pulls as many people as he can through for a short period of time.
[The Legendary] valles: Lessee... Out of my three MMs...
[The Legendary] valles: One builds hers.
[The Legendary] valles: One inherited hers from Nogi-kaasan.
[The Legendary] valles: ...and one -seduces- hers. So, um.
[The Legendary] valles: ...'sprobly a good thing I don't play any of them that often.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Well, we could say that tier one pets can be recruited IRL
[The Legendary] Foxboy: But the higher tiers... not so much
[The Legendary] Skye Valentine: Thugs could be.
[The Legendary] valles: Hm.
[The Legendary] valles: I'd say...
[The Legendary] valles: They get 'manifested' too.
[The Legendary] valles: -If-.
[The Legendary] valles: They've been developed as characters - given specific names and such - and...
[The Legendary] valles: ...if they were out at the time of the event.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Ooog. What about the dual-box folks with pocket Healers?
[The Legendary] valles: ...wha?
[The Legendary] valles: Who?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Someone has two accounts, and creates a toon they want to play and a dum "bot" to spam heals
[The Legendary] valles: Ah.
[The Legendary] valles: Hm...
[The Legendary] valles: 'Transporter Accident'
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Multiplexed consciousness? or smooshed together?
[The Legendary] valles: Smoosh.
[The Legendary] valles: But... perhaps it'd just be better if they -always- ended up as the healbot.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Well that takes out SOME of the PVP griefers [Image: wink.gif]
[The Legendary] valles: Or at least sticks them as relatively harmless Em Defenders.
[The Legendary] valles: Hm. Cryptic would be getting hit with a -lot- of lawsuits.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: What about the saps that set themselves up as the shoulder kitten controlling the girl?
[The Legendary] valles: Most folks'd probably be cool with what happened to them, but some are just, y'know, dipshits.
[The Legendary] valles: They're stuck as shoulder kittens, of course. Justice. ^_^
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Nope, the PARENTS suing for their kids becoming Asshat villains
[The Legendary] valles: Well, them too.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Though, it might be fun to see the first few "silver age hero" news reports
[The Legendary] Foxboy: You know, mysterious flying person rescues kitten from tree
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Of course the villainy gets better ratings
[The Legendary] valles: And doubtless attracts do-gooders of varying competance.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: I still wanna see a "gimp build" take out an 00b3r pvp for story purposes
[The Legendary] valles: Definitely.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Because the "gimp build" IS a hero. Despite being a weak dominator or mm build
[The Legendary] valles: 'Petless MM saves the day!'
[The Legendary] Foxboy: All the players who'd grok the Spider-man philosophy as it were.
[The Legendary] valles: Or just a TA/Arch defender, maybe.
[The Legendary] valles: *[The Legendary] Foxboy: Doing the classic "pin to the wall" thing
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Pretty much half the "for fun in PVE-only builds"
[The Legendary] valles: 'AGH! My hand! AAAAAAAAHH!'
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Like the MAN-build
[The Legendary] valles: 'Martial Arts/??'
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Someone who has ALL of their primary and secondary powers and can PLAN for a fight without stamina
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Martial Arts Natural
[The Legendary] valles: Ahh.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Specifically any toon that could be a "real person"
[The Legendary] valles: Like, MA/Inv without auras, or something.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: yup
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Petless thug/traps mm, as well
[The Legendary] valles: Could a Thug MM -with- pets be 'normal,' too?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: yes, I think so, but folks focus on the HOT TWO-GUN ACTION!!!!
[The Legendary] valles: Mercs MMs could work, too.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: All the mms but necro could actually
[The Legendary] valles: If you're willing to accept rayguns as plausible.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Forgot about bots
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And think about how many defenders will flock to hospitals?
[The Legendary] valles: This about how many hospitals will be desperate to hire them!
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And /dark mms... would feel VERY weird
[The Legendary] valles: Hm? Why?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: I mean they can target ANYTHING with their heal
[The Legendary] Foxboy: to create the healing aura
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Consider RL a PVP zone where everything is flagged friend and foe
[The Legendary] Foxboy: that is you decide WHO gets your buffs, and you can target ANYONE/Thing with your debuffs/attacks/etc
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Shadow Fall to sneak in.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Twilight Grasp on a chair to power a Healing burst to patient
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Keep shadow Fall up, and Darkest Night the Hospital security
[The Legendary] Foxboy: to escape
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Howling twilight in the ER against a few trashcans to help code blues
[The Legendary] valles: Given how high the basic jump is...
[The Legendary] valles: -any- hero would be mildly superstrong by normal human standards.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: And easily able to get into the NBA
[The Legendary] valles: Flying /SS tanks would be marketable for anyone building a skyscraper.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Or effects in Hollywood
[The Legendary] valles: Flying -anything- would, for that matter - less of a hassle about safety measures.
[The Legendary] valles: Nah. Illusion controllers'd have -that- market sewn up.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Especially since they'd have MORE control of the illusions
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Fewer Generic decoys
[The Legendary] valles: Mind Control would be valuable to shrinks - and the legal system.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Except.... most of it would be inadmissible, or lawyers would fight tooth-and-nail to make it so.
[The Legendary] valles: Unless it'd been thought of as working like the Bene Gesserit Voice.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Hm?
[The Legendary] valles: Giving verbal orders that Must Be Obeyed.
[The Legendary] valles: And if you have a number of different telepaths, with no contact with each other...
[The Legendary] valles: I'd count them as falling under the 'expert witness' category, anyway.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: ah the IST system
[The Legendary] valles: Dunno it.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Should we put this up on the Forum to play with?
[The Legendary] valles: Absolutely.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Under "the legendary" or "Other People's Fiction?"
[The Legendary] valles: Mm... Legendary. With a note about being borderline.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: We can assume Virtue as the Source server, yes?
[The Legendary] valles: With what's been said about Roleplaying affecting mental state, that'd be the most interesting option, yeah.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Hm. We'd also have to have some folks make up jerkwad characters too.
[The Legendary] valles: ...a perfect opportunity to make fun of political figures...
[The Legendary] Foxboy: First arc is of course "wow this is cool/this sucks"
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Second arc is early forays into hero/villain fights
[The Legendary] Foxboy: third is Government crackdown
[The Legendary] valles: Third arc is society catching up to the implications...
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Same diff [Image: wink.gif]
[The Legendary] valles: Fourth is...
[The Legendary] valles: First -real- Supervillains?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Arrival of Portal Corp
[The Legendary] valles: And fifth... yeah, that.
[The Legendary] valles: I can see Statesman saying... 'So, my double in this universe is a game designer?'
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Real supervillains, you mean not just morons revellign in power, but actual "I am EEEEEEVIL" and "one... BILLION dollars" villainy?
[The Legendary] valles: Yeah.
[The Legendary] valles: People who are morally corrupt... -and- smart enough to bide their time until they're really -ready-.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Now which states would we wind up with? Comic or one of the servers timeline?
[The Legendary] valles: Dunno the difference, really.
[The Legendary] valles: Like I said, I haven't gotten around to reading the comics, yet.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: So we'd been dealing with Rhino and Bizarro, but then we'd be dealing with Kingpin and Luthor?
[The Legendary] valles: Yeah, exactly.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: ...
[The Legendary] Foxboy: Lots of old bald guys?
[The Legendary] Foxboy: ^_^
[The Legendary] valles: Not neccessarily old or bald, but...
[The Legendary] valles: Countess Crey would fall in this category, too.
[The Legendary] valles: Gideon Manly.
[The Legendary] valles: Blockbuster.
[The Legendary] valles: Capital-M-Master-Minds.
[The Legendary] Paradoxe: Bloody Grandville crashes
[The Legendary] valles: And I need to go eat; I'll copychat this on my way out.
[The Legendary] Foxboy: kk
''We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat
them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.''

-- James Nicoll
Fucking hell, I went back and fucking deleted those.
But I didn't save it, so if you've got it, it'd be appreciated.
Ja, -n

"Puripuri puripuri... Bang!"
AntiMatter's Lab, Praetorian Earth, January 19, 2007, 21:55 Eastern time
AntiMatter peered into his intruments at the newest world his sensors had picked up. It was completely useless, except as a source of potential slaves. No obvious paranormals, no magic, seriously weak technology. Easy pickings, and thus, useless. Tyrant enjoyed a challenge. Sighing within his containment suit, he turned from the viewer and prepared to send his probe to another universe. About that time, his probe collided with another.

Paragon City, City of Heroes Earth, January 19, 2007, 21:57 Eastern time
Tina MacIntyre began to panic. She recognized the technology behind the device in the last transmission from the experimental probe as coming from Praetorian Earth. Who knew what would happen with the interaction between the unstable quantum core and whatever AntiMatter used to power his. The results were potentially catastrophic.

NCSoft Offices, California, Our Earth. January 19, 2007, 19:00 Pacific time
The superstring created by the collision of two extradimensional probes infiltrated the racks of computers that made up Virtue server for the City of Heroes MMORPG during prime hours. It's quantum energy reacted with the device and sent pulses along the primitive computer network, changing the lives of 1521 people forever...

Okay, this bunny is pretty simple. At 10 pm eastern on January 19, 2007, a hiccup in reality results in every player logged on to Virtue Server becoming the character they were playing at the time.
1.) Each person is transformed in situ. That is, sitting at your computer playing CoX one moment, blinking in confusion wearing "spandex" at the computer the next.
2.) The amount of RP done with the character has an impact on the effect of the transformation. Physical appearance is always modified to match the character.
Mental effects vary. A PL'ed FOTM character will result in a relatively straightforward transformation into the player with the powers, but little idea of how to use them.
On the other hand, a casually RP'ed character will result in some of the character's Mannerisms, knowledge, RP'ed special effects, etc. being added to a base of the player's personality. For example, if I get zapped while playing Wide, I get an encyclopedic knowledge of Football, and the equivalent in a bachelor's in Mathematics (Statistics)
Another example, a heavy RP'er gets subsumed by his or her character. That is her character is confused, with these memories added that don't make sense. I feel sorry for the {mature RPer's} in Pocket D.
Powers will translate into the real world in wildly different ways, depending on how they're RPed/explained if at all. Two energy/energy Blasters can have a Kirby Dots power or Beach Baby's high-pressure water power. A PL'ed ninja mm will have the vanilla ninja set, but Lady Nogitsune would have her Kunoichi FINALLY able to shed their bland disguises.
3.)This will affect people logged into the Virtue server at 10 pm eastern on that day, ONLY. A person on a character is transformed into that character. A person on the character select screen is transformed into the character they've invested the most into: usually, but not always, any 50's they may have, depending on time chatting under atlas, working off debt, etc.
Edited for Actual numbers of Players online and NOT hidden on Virtue at the time and date indicated.
''We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat
them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.''

-- James Nicoll
My original post should have been the chatlog where this concept first got dreamed up.
But EZBitch ate it, so.
There had been about five 'plot arcs' suggested:
Arc 1: 'I'm wearing what?!', wherein people realize what's happened to them, realize what they can do, and cope with the personal repercussions.
Arc 2: In which PVP freaks, griefers, and generally power-hungry jerkwads start to go off the rails as they realize what they've stumbled into.
Arc 3: In which the grown-ups catch up to what's happening and start to take what steps they feel neccessary to deal with it.
Arc 4: In which the first 'true supervillains' begin to crop up - not just wrecking banks for pocket change, but holding cities for ransom, taking over third-world countries, etc.
Arc 5: In which Portal Corp finally tracks down what came of the colliding probes.
Ja, -n

"Puripuri puripuri... Bang!"
. o O ( ...
The first thing I noticed was that I was naked.
The second thing I noticed was that I was female.
At this point, some people might be panicing, demanding answers, discovering that they were a natural redhead... Me, I just wanted my shirt back.
Seeing as Alexis is the latest look at the author avatar I've been playing for years, being her probably wouldn't cause me much difficulty. '.'
Alexis: You want to be Mirami though.
Mirami: *blink blink* Why?
Alexis: I've heard immortality is nice.
(must not feed plot bunny...
sigh, I'm so weak)
The sudden structural failure of the chair was a surprise.
The loud clank I made as I hit the floor was a sign *something was wrong*
Getting up a was interesting experience. Going from 6'1" 150 pounds and male, to 5'6" 250 pounds and female was an education in misplaced Proprioception.
Knowing how to build advanced robotics: very cool
Having a insistent compulsion to find Agatha Clay: worrisome
Morals: out the window
Biding your time until the necessary troops have been built: Priceless
Me => Clank Patrol is not all that happy of thought.-Terry
"Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." - Antoine de Saint Exupery
"Luge strategy? Lie flat and try not to die." - Carmen Boyle (Olympic Luge Gold Medal winner - 1996)
Mary Sue's theme music
"so listen up boy, or pornography starring your mother will be the second worst thing to happen to you today"
TF2: Spy
This post has been ret-conned by the author.When engaging, nothing beats a full frontal.
In the epic rage of furious thunder
legends create their tales
when the twilight calls and the dark lord falls
our glory will prevail

[Image: strikersetcfinal9_th.jpg]

His Lovely Wife

I've always wanted to be a redhead.
Being petite would certainly be a novelty.
Haveing an excess of static electricity? - Dangerous but incentive to get rid of the wall to wall carpeting.
Freaking out the dog? Not cool.
Explaining this to my parents? Let's not go there. They already don't seem to understand.
Waking up next to Bella Fuego? I'm sure I'd be the envy of a lot of people. (Would be much more interesting if I was playing Morgan at the time Rev was playing Bella though :-)
Being able to heal anyone? I am _SO_ there.
Having a bunch of ex-males knowing exactly how annoying PMS is? Now _THAT_ is priceless :-)
It had been awhile since I had logged on to City of Heroes. I played that game and another called World of Warcraft. When I needed a change of pace from one, I'd pick the other up for awhile. This cycle usually lasted about 3-4 weeks at most. Recently I'd just come off an extended "grind" of WoW and needed to immerse myself in a world where you didn't need to worry so much about "gear" or "money" and where, if you really wanted to, you could lose yourself in a more classical "Good vs. Evil" mindset.
So, first things first, log on with Lora'Lai and see if anything in our base needed my attention, then I'd check on missions or see if anyone wanted to team.
I had just finished a mission in Crey's Folly and had flown Lora'Lai up to high altitude in Nova form. I wanted to get up from my chair and go get a drink and take care of... other things. I didn't want Lora to accidentally be too close to a mob spawn while I was up. And Bright Nova form costs nothing to hover, so I could leave her up in the sky safe while I took care of my real world stuff.
You know how they say that when a major life-changing event happens to you and the world around you, that your mind focuses and you remember lots of specific details about where you were and what was around you and what you were doing? Kennedy Assasination, Challenger, 9-11, Columbia, that sort of thing? Or maybe a car wreck? I remember very specifically what was going through my mind over 20 years ago when my car flipped over that railing (don't worry, it was going slowly and I was amazingly unhurt).
Well, I remember my knees creaking, that not-quite-painful crackling that always accompanied getting up from a prolonged sit-down. I remember my weight. I'd been significantly overweight for some years. (Thankfully not morbidly obese, just middle-age spare tire). I remember my eyesight and the glasses that I had just put back on after staring at the monitor from what would probably be considered too-close a range. I remembered that I'd wanted to get a shower and wash my hair that night because I'd been rushing that morning and had let it go for one day. I remember the cold, how the floor was significantly chilly though the air in the room was comfortably warm. (It was in the mid-30's outside).
I remember all of that. Very clearly. Because all of that vanished in the next moment and I've never had any of those specific sensations ever again, save for the temperature. What I _don't_ remember with clarity is the moment of the actual change itself.
I think it was the sensory change. When you are used to perceiving the world in one way with one set of sensory organs as the vast majority of beings in the universe do their whole lives, then trying to get a handle on even basic perceptions from an entirely different set of senses takes more than a little getting used to. Most beings never have this experience. We Kheldians do.
Thank ghu for Lai. That presence in the back of my mind was just as confused as me, but at least _she_ knew what things were supposed to look like and feel like. And nudged me in the right directions quickly enough that I didn't go mad.
Yes, I'm pretty certain, all things considered, that I'm not mad even now. Thank you very much.
How can I describe being Kheldian in Bright Nova form to someone who isn't one of us? It's very difficult, that's for sure. Metaphors have to suffice. Imagine not only being able to see sunlight or a light bulb or the pictures on your monitor, but being being able to _taste_ the energy? Or feel it's presence like a gentle breeze? All at the same time. I could faintly hear the murmer of countless radio and TV stations but I could also sense different textures to it all.
Mind you, none of this made any _sense_ at first. I was too confused to think. But eventually, with the help of my inner "voice" I gained enough presence of mind to concentrate on some things and block others out. I could tune my senses to the point where I could see and hear and feel the world around me much like I did before the change. But there was this sense of information about things that I was constantly aware of on a low level that I never knew before.
(Life itself emits a kind of energy, you know. and it kind of disturbed me, later, when I realized just how many small insects and other critters I could sense around me in the walls of my house, until I found out through experience that this is a perfectly normal state of affairs for the majority of human habitation.)
When I could start making sense of my own sensorium and how much things had REALLY changed, then I very quietly spent several minutes freaking out.
Despite every single bit of logic in the world, I was all of a sudden NOT HUMAN. I floated near the back wall of my room from the monitor. I didn't have arms or legs, but a two forked tail and tentacles.
What truly was disturbing to me on one level was how natural this state seemed to me, after a fashion.
My room was in disarray. Well - more so than usual at any rate. I must have flown around and bumped into a lot of things. Several wall scrolls lay draped where they had fallen off the walls. There were clothes scattered everywhere and not in their usual piles. A couple of my figurines were tipped over or sent to the floor. The ceiling fan was for some reason lying broken in the corner. Thank goodness it hadn't taken out the computer! But it had scattered the kibble around some.
I experimented with the tentacles for a bit. Yes, they do work as manipulating limbs. Not very strong ones, mind you. But they also serve as part of my sensory organs. Imagine if your inner ear was on the outside of your body and constantly "sampling" for balance... and for other things - like the energy fluxes all around. That's why they wave constantly. It's an unconscious thing to a Kheldian. As natural as breathing. But like breathing, you have some control over it.
Once I had control over myself and had adjusted, the first thought that came to mind was obvious. Could I change back? I thought about it and in thinking about it got the answer that yes I could. I wasn't just sensing energy after all, I WAS energy. Just in a different state than what I was used to. I just needed to change states. In Bright Nova form, I am solid. I can touch and be touched. but it's really just an energy pattern in my memory that I manifest in a semi-plasma state.
My base form, I knew, was human, and I was actually exerting just the barest sliver of my self to maintain the Bright Nova state as opposed to reverting.. Like keeping a muscle group in your arm or leg set a certain way. The natural inclination of the human body is after all, the "fetal" position. In Zero-gravity, that's what we revert to when we sleep.
So the trick, then, was just to "relax" that particular "muscle" and revert back! Simple!
So I did.
And that's when things got REALLY complicated...
"This kind of thing tends invariably to devolve into the kind of "No, Nakajima, THIS is true power!!" argument that only really works if you're yelling it from the cockpit of a giant robot . . ."
This one remembers clearly the events of that night leading up to the metamorphosis. While still a "he," this one had returned from work and booted up his computer to play City of Heroes. This one had logged into...
Excuse me. It is difficult to normalize... my ... speech or writing since the Event. "Normal" speech feels terribly rude. Do not even try to get this one to use chat abbreviations.
I had logged into one of my lower-level alternate characters to see who was online at approximately 9:50 pm.
[The Legendary]Message of the Day [01-14-2007 21:34pm]: Congratulations to Minuet Mac Hine, our latest 50!
[Broadcast]Mairzy Doats: lvl 13 mm lft pst
[Request] 00b3r l33t: B100D 5KULLZ, a new VG is recruiting pst
[The Legendary]Foxboy: Greets!
[The Legendary]His Lovely Wife: Hey, Foxy!
[The Legendary]Drenivian: yo
[The Legendary]Foxboy: WOW!
[The Legendary]Foxboy: Looks like almost everyone is on tonight!
You have defeated Wolf Spider TacOps
Lazy Dragon has defeated Blood Brother Chopper
You have defeated Marcone Capo
You have defeated Mook
[The Legendary]His Lovely Wife: Care to join us on Wide, Fox?
[The Legendary]Foxboy: Sure! Just let me park Arbmu and I'll switch right over
I quit to the log in screen and relogged into the Virtue server. The character select screen came up and this one's life changed forever. The lights in my room began to flicker, and my parent's TV clicked off. Oddly, my computer seemed unaffected. In fact the screen seemed to glow brighter... I could vaguely hear my parent's shout of concern as I toppled out of the chair, then I passed out.
''We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat
them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.''

-- James Nicoll

The Hunterminator

On January the 19th , I had been playing City of Heroes, trying to get Yukiyo to level 50 bit by bit when 10PM struck. One minute, I was an adult male human playing a video game on his PC, the next, I was a young female magically created human/demon hybrid trying to cope with something that my mind kept insisting was impossible.
I knew that, due to her partly demonic nature, Yukiyo felt her emotions much stronger than was normal, but I had no idea of just how much harder it was to handle panic when it was multiplied by, at least, 3. I think I must have been curled up in a corner for 10 minutes before I finally calmed down enough to actually think about my situation in a rational manner.
"Ok, so, through an odd twist of fate, I've become one of my odder characters. That's not so bad, I mean, I'm now pretty much immortal and I have incredible powers. On the down side, I'm even smaller than before, and I look even younger, and I no longer have the option of letting my mustache grow so I won't have to show my ID every time I ask for a scotch. I'm also pretty sure that my boss won't believe me if I walk in on Monday and claim to be myself so my income is now pretty much reduced to nothing."
I sighed, "I also have to learn how to live as a girl, and bloody hell, I really don't want to be the first man to have a period."
I was starting to get agitated again and I had begun to pace around the room, something I tend to do whenever I'm thinking hard, "Damnit, what do I do now..." I spent a minute thinking about it, "First thing first, how deep is the change?"
I stopped pacing and looked down at myself. As far as I could tell, I was a perfect replica of Yukiyo, including my clothing that had morphed to become her usual outfit. My mind seemed to have changed as well, because on top of being a lot more emotional than before, I kept thinking of spell after spell after spell, which showed another mental change, I now had a MUCH better memory than before.
Having checked the physical and mental, I had only the mystical left to check, and so I did, using one of the spells I had always dreamed of using. As my feet left the ground and gravity ceased being important to me, my lips stretched themselves into a wide grin. With a gleeful giggle, I flipped upside down and laughed as the ground did not rush up to hit my face.
At that point, I decided that I could live with being Yukiyo.
There you go, my contribution to this very fun idea. You know, when I started writing this, I kept thinking of the troubles, but at that last bit, I suddenly remembered. The reason why I like Yukiyo so much and am a fan of the flight travel power is that flying is something that I am in love with.
Writing this has reminded me of how much I love it and so, I'm quite happy I took the time to contribute to this thread.
Okay, so this was prompted by a couple things. Namely, many folks already have the genderbending angle covered. So I didn't wanna do that. =)
Secondly, while crossing myself with...I dunno, Superball or something might be amusing, there isn't really much personality clash there. We'd likely reach a happy medium. An unhappy medium, on the other hand...
Unfortunately, most of you haven't met this guy, but he's my oldest villain (tho admittedly, I play him so infrequently he's still L18...). EM/Fire Brute on Virtue.

It's scary how something so little can change your world. A split-second decision, a choice made on whim...and poof.
A thin stream of piss goes widdling down another leg of the trousers of time.
It could have gone better. There I was, looking at the login screen, debating what to play. Syndesis was right at the top, of course, standing there in all her green-blazing glory. Always fun. But I felt like gaining some experience, so she was out. Didn't feel like another hero, either. Not really. No Superball, no Space Mage...
All perfectly rational decisions, the sort of thing that flashes through your mind in a second. Stuff you don't give serious thought to. Because, y'know, what does it matter?
So I move the mouse over to the names of red, hover over one of those nice little spiders, swing the cursor, click...
Little things like that. They change your life. If I'd waited just a second...
Well, I hear that folks still at the character creation screen when the Deus ex Machina happened ended up as their "main" character. I could have dealt with that. Sure, my oldest and dearest character is a she and I'm most definitely male...
...but compared to the sensation of slowly losing all your morals and possibly your mind, wearing a different cut of pants isn't nearly that bad.
Syndesis. I could have lived with Syndesis. She and I, we're not so different. Not in the end.
If I'd been her, I wouldn't have woken up in disorientation, confusion, and white hot rage. I wouldn't have put a fist through my computer, wouldn't have destroyed my room in a blaze of angry fire.
Noonlighter. Dear God in Heaven, why him?
Could have been worse, though. Could have been worse. That's what I keep telling myself. I could have logged in as Obsolete...and then I'd really be up the proverbial digestive waste creek without a propulsion device. At least Noonlighter, for all his faults, is relatively sane.
Relatively, anyway. For a given value of sane.
He thought it perfectly logical, perfectly normal, as reasonable as breathing, to eliminate all witnesses before escaping the scene.
All witnesses being my family.
Yeah. That's bad. Really bad.
I stopped in time. Thank God I did. Reigned in a punch like a freight train, released the energy, about half a second before I caved Dad's head in.
They screamed.
I ran.
Noonlighter doesn't run.
But I most certainly do.

I'm not alone.
It's in the newspapers. This...whatever it is...hit all around the world. City of Heroes. City of Villains. Didn't take long for someone to make the connection. Cryptic and NCsoft have no comment for the press at this time.
Most...incidents...were in America. Which makes sense. Looks like it happened all at once, and that was peak hour over there. Ain't so many of us elsewhere, due to the great wonder of time zones. But enough. A few sightings in Europe, Australia...
...and here, of course. Apparently there's enough of us City-of players in little sunny Singapore. And our copies of the game are keyed to the US servers, of course, much like our Aussie friends.
Hell, there's probably been a report of me by now.
A seven-foot man in an eye-watering yellow suit, hat, and full-face mask? That sorta thing that gets attention.
Noonlighter doesn't do subtle. He marches down the street...no, he swaggers. Like he owns the place. Like the world owes him. He's got the power, that's all that matters.
Me, I just want to run and hide.
I stole that newspaper. You'd think that'd make the petty criminal now sharing my headspace a lot happier. But no. I just nicked it off someone's driveway in the wee hours of the morning. That's not a Noonlighter crime, that's just embarrassing.
Hiding isn't a Noonlighter thing. Laying low, yeah, that's fine. But laying low entails a comfortable safehouse somewhere, not squatting in the undergrowth of a freaking forest.
Well, boo-hoo. Forests are good places to hide in. Army taught me that much, anyway.
Settling cross-legged on the grass, I look at my hands. I clench black-gloved fists, and slowly open my fingers.
These aren't my hands. My hands shouldn't look like they could strangle a gorilla.
But if they're Noonlighter's hands...
I make a gesture. An alien one, nothing I've done before, and yet so very familiar.
It appears in my palm, golden fire swirling to solid form, chain spooling out from beneath the jacket. The metal is hot, but quickly cools to the touch.
I thumb the stud, and the watch flips open.
An antique pocket-watch. Beautiful, ornate. Except for the fact the face is cracked, and the hands are frozen at twelve.
The watch still works, though. I think. It has to. The magic's in me.
Which means I can turn it off. Right?
I shudder.
Never speculated that far. I'd established, in vague statements, that the watch no longer works the same as it did...when Noonlighter was a hero. A simple throwaway line to explain why his powers changed when I remade him as a Brute, not Tanker. To explain why he had a gargantuan build in the Rogue Isles, when the Paragon version was normal in stature.
Restarting the watch, making it tick again, simply moving the hands away from that fateful frozen hour...it should stop the magic, right? That was the point. Always the point. That's why he's Noonlighter.
What would happen, though?
With a start, I realise...I really don't know.
Will I become me? The real me? With my own face, my own body, everything?
Or will I become the real Noonlighter, some guy named Roger Carver?
I...don't know.
I've never established how Carver looks like. I'm not even sure how old he is. Anywhere from his mid-20s to 40s. Probably Caucasian...but that's it. I didn't make a civvie costume for him when he was a Tank. And when I made him a Brute, I planned on never doing so. He's Noonlighter now, you see? Let his real face remain eternally lost.
That last line, in retrospect, gives me the shivers. Not sure I like the symbolism.
All I have to do is reach out, twist the dial...
Carver says no. No, no, no. I've got the power, so why the hell do I need anything else?
But me, the real me...says yes yes yes.
I close the pocket-watch, snapping it shut. It vanishes from my fingers in a whisper of flame.
Yeah, I'm a coward. Some things never change.

It's kind of sad, really.
We've told so many stories about real-life superheroes entering the world. Mostly telling us how it could go so terribly, utterly, and completely wrong.
So now, we've got a chance to do it right.
It's a bunch of geeks with the power. A horde of gamers. Not necessarily the most well-adjusted of people. To say nothing of us RPers, stuck with freaking personas overlapping our thoughts.
I mean, look at me. I've just been hiding out, trying to sort through the wreckage of my head. That's not exactly constructive behaviour beneficial to society.
Granted, the only powers I have revolve around punching things, and soaking up damage like...I dunno, something big and on fire. Not exactly the kind of thing suitable for charity work and nation building.
I suppose I could join the fire brigade, being mostly immune to hot things that go 'whoomph'. But I don't think I could fit in their usual stations. Lord knows what would happen if I tried to slide down a pole.
I'm just wool-gathering, though. Trying to distract myself from the task at hand. If there's a task to be done, anyway. I still...haven't decided.
Kinda surprised nobody has noticed me yet, but I guess most people don't look up. Not fifteen storeys worth of up, anyway. Especially when there's so much stuff going on at street level.
The police are doing a pretty good job of cordoning off the area. I think, anyway. I've never seen that kind of thing in real life, but Noonlighter certainly has.
I've always respected the police. Noonlighter's feelings...are rather more mixed. All the innate corruption, petty abuses of power, yada-yada-yada. Well. It's not like that's incompatible with my own experience. In the Army, I briefly reported to a security guy who used to be a cop, and he told me some incredible stories...enh. Doesn't matter.
Honest or not, the cops are doing a decent job. Pity they're woefully unequipped to handle what's really going on.
It's inevitable, really. Ain't just roleplayers in City-of. There's powergamers, too. Kiddies with daddy's credit card and way too little parental supervision. Adults with even less maturity than the kiddies. PvP gankers, griefers, general pains in the rear.
And the cosmic dice being what they are, I guess it's sorta inevitable that some of those types would get yanked along for the ride.
So, one of those guys gets a bright idea:
He'll rob a bank.
A bank.
Just like in the game. And with all his amazing powers and stuff, who's gonna stop him?
I'm fairly sure he's not a roleplayer, just an idiot with less sense than God gave lemmings. I doubt very many roleplayers have their characters swear in Singlish - that's Singapore pidgin slang, for you uneducated foreign readers...
...well, except maybe XW. But I don't think that's one of his characters. He has better fashion sense than that, and he'd probably have told me if he made Singaporean Salvation Army Bin Man.
If my eyes weren't sealed behind my mask, I think they'd bleed.
I can hear him yelling to the cops, warning 'em to back off. Well, at least I assume that's what he's asking. Hard to make out most words from up here, but the profanity's surprisingly clear. Guy's got a set of lungs on him.
So, now, the big question. What should I do? Part of me just wants to kick back, laugh, and maybe find some popcorn. Because altruism? Heroism? Pfft.
The rest of me? Well, this isn't a game....
Aw, hell with it.
I jump.
People scream, cops freak. I hit the pavement. Shattered concrete cascades off my feet as I rise and stride forward.
A few handguns clear holsters, but none of the officers fire. Good. Not sure how I'd react if they did.
One of them shouts for me to stop. I ignore him. A few more steps...
...and I'm in the bank, walking through the wreckage that once was doors.
There aren't any hostages, just one spandex-clad twit standing in the middle of the lobby. Figures, he couldn't even get the tellers to sit still. Bank robbery's an art. Not for amateurs.
The erstwhile thief goggles at me, eyes wide behind his stupid, stupid mask.
"Jeez," I sigh, "never seen a proper costume before? Hmph. Guess not, if that's what you're wearing. There's stuff besides the 'Random' button, you know?"
He raises his hands, purple gloves igniting.
I throw my shield up.
Fire meets fire.
The impact rocks me back a step, but when the smoke fades, I'm still standing...surrounded in tame mystic flame. Domesticated magic is a wonderful thing.
People wonder why the Noonlighter mask has inch-thick eyeplates, nigh-opaque lenses. It's simple.
I need to see through my own glare. Sunglasses don't cut it.
Overhead, the bank's sprinklers go off. It's kinda funny, really. The water just hisses to steam as it meets my aura, but random-idiot over there just gets completely soaked.
"CHEE BAI," robber-boy screams, "I'M A FIFTY BLASTER, OK?!"
"Fifty, shmefity," I mutter, marching steadily forward.
It's a gamble, but from what I've figured out, I've got all of Noonlighter's powers. If this guy's just playing with a standard powerset...
He shoots. Again. His flame meets my flame, the dancing inferno circling my body, casting my yellow suit into even starker relief. The combined effect is blinding. I know that. 's what I'm counting on.
With a little spark of extra magic, it's suddenly really searing, really bright, the kind of light that punches straight through your retinas and through the back of your eye sockets.
Ever stare at the sun? At Noon?
My would-be opponent staggers, clawing at his face.
Too bad. He can't see me smile.
"I'm a concept character," I retort.
Another step, two, and I'm right up to him, gripping his ridiculous mismatched costume by the scruff of the neck. Black and purple? Blech. Not with that pattern, buddy.
He screams.
It must hurt. Being hauled up by a burning man. And all that water coming from the bank's fire sprinklers is hitting my aura, hissing into scalding steam.
"Huh," I observe, clinically, "didn't pick any heat resistance in your build? Sorry, friend. Should have taken the Flame Mastery pool. Too bad."
I place a hand flat against his chest, and summon my power. Kicking it right past pretty little fire and all the way into superheated plasma.
People laugh at how energy melee looks. They say it's glowing pom-poms of doom - and pink, besides.
I don't know. That look's always given me ideas.
A faint whimper escapes my captive. I drop him.
He's alive, interestingly enough, though his ribs aren't looking too good. I'm not really an expert on anatomy, but I think I can actually see a couple in that mass of cauterised red. Hm...
I crouch, pry open his jaw, and stick two fingers all the way to the back of his mouth. One more ought to do it. Quick and relatively painless---
No, no, no.
What the HELL am I doing?
Dear God.
I get up, shuddering, and run. Out of the bank, into the horde of cops. I'm still on fire, they don't get to close. I think. I jump, literally rocketing myself into the air, arcing as high as I can go. Up. Away. Anywhere, just away.
Noonlighter doesn't run.
But I do.
I do.

There. Somewhat darker than the other pieces so far, but I wanted to do something different. And beat the crap out of a l33t gamer. =)
Comments? I figured that Noon's violence and mindset would make for a terrible clash with my real personality. Then there's his whole nature as a magically transformed being...
-- Acyl
I could hear their feet in the hallway, clattering towards and around the bend. That bend, a simple ninety-degree turn, was half the reason I had picked this place to wait; the other half was that the wall was too thick to shoot through.
If they wanted me, they'd have to come through the door.
They did.
They didn't look up, and I made them pay for it. I dropped the second through the door with a kick, then put my strongest left into the big white SWAT emblem on the chest of the man behind him.
What that entailed was forcing a rush of energy - it sorta tingled - into my left hand, then shoving it out as I hit him. I'm told that the stuff I perceive that way - directly as my body creates and directs it and indirectly as the constant ambient washes over my own system - is, well, gravitons. The carrier particles of gravitation. Concentrating them that way accelerated my arm unnaturally, turning what would have been a slightly sluggish swing into a flashing strike too quick for most people to track.
At the speed my fist was moving at the end of the arc, and with the kilo-and-a-half gauntlet protecting it, I probably could have caved in his ribcage. Instead I pulled it a bit, and spread the impact across his entire chest rather than concentrating it to cause real damage. Killing cops causes trouble down the road - their buddies tend not to be forgiving on the matter - so I was glad that the cracking noise that resulted was quiet enough that it was likely only a couple of ribs.
He let the submachinegun fall from his hand and crumbled, face tight with pain, and I spun away and threw my other arm out to catch the first man across the temple as he turned back to face me.
Behind me, a shotgun barked, and I yelped unwillingly as the load spread itself across my kidneys. That was definitely going to bruise.
I twisted back away from the doorway, out of the line of fire, then stepped one, two strides into the room and threw myself at the wall across from me. I came through the portal at about knee height and bounced back out into the center of the path just in time for my knee to catch him low on the shin. It made a noise I'm pretty sure it was never meant to and he went down, and I swung a right up to meet him and make sure.
I twisted myself out from under him and sprang straight up and flipped as I went, to hit the ceiling feet-first with a thump and ricochet back down and into the last man on the SWAT team, fist first.
I turned and looked up, scanning the hallway for threats. Nothing, I was sure of it. Those black shades of mine might look like ordinary sunglasses, but they're actually the display element of a fairly sophisticated 'palmtop' computer with combat sensors and a surprisingly large database of its own. That didn't mean that they did any worse a job of cutting the glare from the window, of course, just that they let me be sure there was nothing I was missing.
"Oof!" I said, exactly as anyone else would when a hundred mile an hour slushball nailed them between the breasts.
Except the sniper.
It took me a moment to catch up with what had happened, and then another to catch my breath, and then I looked down at the patch of blue paint spread across most of my chest.
"Well, shit," I said.
That won a snicker from most of the rest of the team - especially the ones I had hit. Except Mark; broken ribs shouldn't be laughed with.

Ja, -n
(wondering if anyone figured it out ahead of time)

"Puripuri puripuri... Bang!"

His Lovely Wife

Looking back, I can tell you what happened and at exactly what time. Whether or not thats normal, I dont know. But, hey, whats normal anymore?
9:50pm Shayne comes in the door from class
9:55pm after greeting Bolo and grabbing a glass of water Shayne starts upstairs
9:57pm Shayne sets his food down, out of puppy reach, and comes to see me in the computer room
9:59pm I ask how class went, it went great. Shayne is standing behind me and he drops a small bag of two-bite brownies on my desk
10:00pm Chaos Rules
Iwe.Iwhoever we are, we dont remember how long we were in shock, didnt even think of looking at the clock, there were other things to think about. Four people living in one head. All at a moments notice. It was very hard to compartmentalize Marcus, Misonon, Shayne and Cindy, yet one of us found that it had to be done, at first anyway, to keep us sane.saner? then we were.
When we were all sorted out, for the moment, we started trying to figure out what had happened. Through online comments in-game, we figured we werent the only ones. The morning news online hinted at the same thing. If so many people were affected, someone, somewhere, would have a solution to this..mess. We just had to survive through it. First test, Cindy had to be at work from 1:00pm on Saturday.
Could Misonon still change to Nova form? Thunder-bang-crash. Yes, he could. Though Cindy had never posted Marcus and Misonons origin story, she had written that Misonon had been partnered with a female before partnering with Marcus. Could Misonon change to a form he had once held like that? It would make things easier if he could present himself as both male and female human. Of course, going for lunch at Grannys on Sunday would present a problem. Wed cross that bridge when we came to it. So, can you do it Misonon?
I looked down at my hands... No... NOT my hands. MY hands were those of a 40-year old male who had never done much in the way of heavy labor beyond helping his dad tinker with cars. THESE hands...
These were the hands of a girl.
I'm very proud to say that I did not scream or completely freak out. I'd already done that before I'd learned to change back from my Nova form. It just hadn't been audible. (At least I didn't think it had been. But then, my house is on the end of the townhouse row and pretty well insulated from the next one down. And no cops had come by. Yet.)
There's a story cliche that the first thing a man transgendered by magic does is that he grabs either for the crotch to confirm something is MISSING or grabs for the chest to confirm that something has been ADDED. I did neither (well, not right THEN, I didn't). I had all the confirmation of my state that I needed just looking at my hands and feeling the difference in the way I stood. Other signals were different as well.
I think I already suspected something like this might be the case. After all, although I had a pretty even split of male-female characters in the game, my two Khelds had so far both been females. I had REALLY hoped though... I'm not quite sure what I'd hoped. I think I had a vague idea that somehow Kheldians were real somehow and that it had fused with the real life me. Basically I'd hoped changing back would change me back into the 40-year old male me. The implications of the alternative were... staggering to put it mildly. And I hadn't wanted to face them unless I had to.
Well now I had to. Yay me.
"Oh bugger... I..."
Not my voice either. A contralto, I think. That shocked me more than the rest, really. Or maybe it was one shock too many?
It was about 4 steps to the bathroom right outside in the hall to the mirror. I almost didn't make it without falling. Balance was different. I steadied myself with my hands on the walls and went in. I took a couple of long deep breaths to get ready, and looked up into the mirror.
The stranger who looked back at me was a bit of a surprise, even considering everything else. She... I... didn't look quite how I expected her... me... to look.
But first... oh yes, that was a girl looking back at me. No brown hair with slightly salt and pepper gray coming in at the temples. No glasses. NOT the face of William Jordan AKA Logan Darklighter.
White hair with slight blueish tint - check.
Startlingly BLUE eyes - check.
The face - was not really the one from the game. But then, I stopped to consider, how could it be the same, really? That was a cartoon. This is reality. Or a pretty reasonable facsimile.
Lora Doubet was a character I had created over a decade ago for a role-playing game. An old style pen and paper table-top game called Champions. She had been a cyborg. I'd played THAT version of Lora to level 50 in the game on another server. Lora'Lai I had actually not pinned down with certainty as to origin. I hadn't even written one for her. But I had been leaning more and more towards assuming that Lora Doubet had fused with a Kheldian to make Lora'Lai. I'd even used the same basic face for both characters.
All of which is by way of explaining why after looking at myself intently, it occurred to me that I looked as if my face was extrapolated from my inner mind's eye as to what Lora would and should look like except of course translated into a realistic face rather than anime or the art style from the game.
I was... well... very very pretty. I'd have to come to terms with that, I suspected. And with how people reacted to me.
I was also glowing. Had been glowing since I changed over. I'd somehow changed into what in the game would have been "Costume Slot #3". Which is just the basic female model with VERY white skin and with a glow effect added. Then layer the shields on top of that for a very ethereal look. Yes, I looked naked in that form to a lot of people, though for the sake of texture consistency, I had actually used a white mask and full body suit colored white as well. But yes, the concept in game was that she was just "clothed" in her energy fields that way.
Concept or not, I wasn't wearing anything but that glow. And the floor was still cold. I needed to shut off that glow and I needed something to wear. I still had my sense for energy states and which one I was in. My inner voice - my Kheldian side, let me know that I could form clothes any time I wanted, and had a few outfits memorized, but that my base form was easiest to change into first before trying any of that.
This wasn't conveyed in anything like Lai just talking to me. It was more like a memory leaping forth, a sort of "Oh yeah! That's right!" kind of sensation.
I thought about it for a moment and then dismissed changing to the original white and blue costume. I just shut off the glow. My skin went to a normal, though still somewhat pale color. I noticed that my senses also shifted almost entirely back to human at that moment, too. No extra sensorium to distract me now.
I walked carefully back into my room and picked up a shirt (MUCH too big for me now!) and slipped into it. The bottom fell almost to my knees, forming a kind of t-shirt dress almost. Then I fell back on the bed, arm over my eyes.
I had to allow myself to get a grip. I had to think about this logically. I had to...
I had to roll over, grab a pillow and cry my eyes out for the next however ungodly long it was.
Why? You think being turned into a "hot chick with superpowers" is all an upside? HA! Here are the downsides -
I could not be identified as me. I was stuck as a girl who had not even a family resemblance to who I had been. (And no, I already knew, with the certainty of my Kheldian side, that I couldn't just shapeshift into William Jordan either.)
My I.D. was no good anymore. I couldn't go to work anymore. Not as the old me. Where was I going to get money? My family? "Hi there! I'm your son! No really I am, just had a little accident with meta-physics." Oh yeah, THAT would go over REAL well. I hadn't just lost myself and any chance of legally providing for myself, I had effectively just lost my family, too.
What about orientation? Was I a lesbian? Or just a guy stuck in a girl's body? There are actual physical differences between male and female brains. More connective tissue between the two sides for females for one thing. Would it change ME so much as to change who and what I would be attracted to?
And oh god... chemistry. What about periods? I was NOT looking forward to that. I've had female friends and girlfriends tell me IN DETAIL what goes on. I'm not surprised women sometimes get stereotyped as crazy during that time of the month. The wonder is that they are as sane as they are still! My respect for their pain tolerance and "ick" factor is immense. Maybe being a Kheldian would mitigate that, but how was I to know that yet?
I felt utterly, completely alone and lost at that moment. Right then I wanted to hermit up and not go outside. Ever.
After awhile I felt... okay. Not better, really. But... I guess it's true what they say. A good cry is good for you sometimes. Get it all out of the system so you can THINK.
So... what just happened? I've been turned into a character I was playing in City of Heroes...
THEN it FINALLY hit me... Maybe what happened to me happened to others? How many?
How would I find out?
I leaped off the bed and vaulted into the chair in front of the computer... Or I would have, if I hadn't completely lost track of my new body's change in balance centers again. I actually made a completely graceless faceplant into the floor and scattered more kibble about... Owie...
Dragging myself into my easy chair in front of the screen, I noticed that the game was down. I had been kicked from the server. Now WHY did that not surprise me? I tried to log back in. The servers all showed as down. Oh dear.
The implications were startling. I checked the website and it was down, and the message forums with them.
I think I could guess why. City of Heroes as a game was effectively OVER until somebody figured out what had happened and why.
Checking into some City of Heroes LiveJournal sites was... Interesting, in the Chinese sense of the word. I saw the number of posts in the first thread and backed out without even reading it.
All of a sudden I was scared of dealing with what would amount to a primal scream over the net. A scream of both of joy and of horror.
I needed to talk with someone I KNEW better, as a friend, who had gone through the same thing. It had been a busy night and though I hadn't been adventuring with any of my online supergroup in any sort of team at the moment of the change, I had been keeping track of the usual online conversations in the Legendary channel. It HAD to have happened to them as well. And maybe it would be easier to deal with as a group of people who already knew each other, more or less.
I checked the Drunkard's Walk forums. Naturally, many of them were already on-line. It was chaos, of course. But I felt better for knowing that we were all in this together.
It was my suggestion that as many of us who could should meet up somewhere.
(OOC: Which is as good a segue as I can think of for getting us all to interact. And also figure out what our limitations for travel powers are. I figure that we're faster in flight or superspeed than the game would ever actually allow. Or can teleport farther. Enough for us all to meet at Bob's place? ^_^)
"This kind of thing tends invariably to devolve into the kind of "No, Nakajima, THIS is true power!!" argument that only really works if you're yelling it from the cockpit of a giant robot . . ."
((Meeting at our place? Sure. We've got room to handle 20 or 30 people comfortably in the living room/dining room area. More than that might get iffy.
As for my role? I've got an idea, and it starts with me typing "BRB, BIO".))
-- Bob
...The President is on the line
As ninety-nine crab rangoons go by...

His Lovely Wife

Bob and Peggy had a nice house. The Cindy part seemed to notice that right away and made a point of saying it out loud in our head. The suggestion had been made to meet at Bobs. Hed been logged in at the time, but away from his computer. Part of us wondered if he was cursing himself for not being Evangelia or rather pleased that he had a peril sensitive bladder.
We did not seem to be the first to arrive, but ours was the only car in the driveway. No, we didnt drive all the way from Ottawa. Cindy wouldnt leave Bolo behind. The car held Bolo and Bolos roadie equipment bag of food, kennel, toys - and some changes of clothes for us. Cindy and Shayne had commented that teleporting the car had given them the best gas mileage theyd ever had out of that thing. We hadnt gone very far from the house before teleporting the car the first time; just to see if we could do it. We could.
We noticed two things while zooming south along the highway, stopping every 200km to teleport the car. One, Nova form could really boogie; Two, we didnt feel the cold as much as we thought we might. Oh, and navigation seemed to be no problem at all. Almost like in game. We focused on Bob, and basically hit follow.
So here we were on his doorstep, Bolo straining to get inside where adventure and loads of new smells waited. Bob answered the door and we introduced ourselves. There were two women already there. One was obviously LoraLai; the other had to be Peggy, as Stilletto. Poor Peggy, we hoped she was strong enough to handle this mess. Although, since she was already a gamer, though not a COHer, chances are she could handle weird without blinking. Come to think of it, one of Cindys favourite quotes in Bobs signature had been something Peggy had said in a game, I loot faster. Yeah, she could handle this.
We found a quiet corner, set up Bolo in his kennel and sat quietly, one hand constantly petting the dog. To reassure all of us I think. We all sat around discussing mundane details of life.
How did you cross the boarder? someone finally asked.
You dont want to know. In other words, we werent here legally. But then, at this point, werent all of us who had changed illegal?
Argh. Knew I shoulda taken the time to write up what I had in mind. Cindy, my original concept had Peggy walking up to the computer at zero-hour, looking for me while I was in the bathroom.
She has one character on Virtue (on all of COH, for that matter) as you may remember -- Stilletto, created for your birthday party, though she didn't get there in time. Other than that one night, though, she's never played the toon.
So the concept was... I'm normal. Peg got caught in the zap. I'm the one who plays; Peg hasn't a clue what to do with her new form. Of course, it's Level 1, so she's not at too bad of a disadvantage there... but who does she log her advancements with?
(And for the record, I'd be very glad not to be Evangelia. Not just for the gender change, but because the honkin' big sword is not going to look friendly to cops. If I had to express a preference, I'd say Looney, of course, followed by Some Random Schmuck and then by X-Ray Ted.)
-- Bob
...The President is on the line
As ninety-nine crab rangoons go by...
Awww... Why NOT be Looney, eh? That would be SO much fun to write!
Hmm... Are you NOT doing that because you've already got him in his own story and don't want him hogging this on too?
Or... with you the odd man out who HASN'T been altered, maybe you're more useful as a POV character or maybe an anchor for the rest of us?
"Wake up! Time for SCIENCE!"
-Adam Savage
Part of us wondered if he was cursing himself for not being Evangelia or rather pleased that he had a peril sensitive bladed.
Was that supposed to be "peril sensitive bladder?"
"Wake up! Time for SCIENCE!"
-Adam Savage

His Lovely Wife

Oops. Yes, it was a peril sensitive bladder. I've fixed it.
And Bob, we've never met Peggy. She can still be Stilletto. Or I can edit the story no problem. Or would you have told us that she'd been changed in the discussion to meet at your house? Hmmm. Easy fix either way. -C-
Edit: Fixed it!
A hand on my shoulder startled me awake. I vaulted into an impressive somersault across the room and called into the shadows for my kunoichi. Still in the disguises that Recluse-dono insisted they wear, they surrounded the person who had the poor sense to disturb a sleeping Lady Nogitsune.
On looking about I was struck with a strong sense of "vuja de." That is, knowing intellectually that something is familiar, but feeling emotionally that it is a new experience. I knew this room and the occupants, but I could tell that they were no threat. Just the rapid crossing of himself and whispered prayer that the old man was saying and the look of terror on the old woman's face as two ninja-to touched lightly on either side of her throat were enough to shock me into a standstill.
These were my parents. But this one's parents died long ago in Yamato, I recalled. I also recalled them raising me and my brother and sister. I shook my head as I realized I was thinking in Japanese. There was a war raging in my mind between Nogitsune and Logan. The battle was decided for this one when the woman (my mother!) swallowed hard and spoke.
"Logan?" she asked. "Are you all right?"
A slight wave of my hand sent the kunoichi back to wherever I had called them from and I considered the question.
"This one thinks so, kaa-san," I replied in a voice like honeyed silk.
[Skipping a lot of "back home" things.]
Super jumping over 205 ri (500 miles or 800 kilometers) had been an interesting experience. Treetop-to-treetop in the more rural and forested areas and roof-hopping through the BosWash corridor had been enlightening. The myriad sounds and smells were simultaneously familiar and new. The rush of winter wind against my fur-covered ears was not as unpleasant as it would have been in my old body, and the "Sinister" pattern outfit I wore combined with my minimal exertion was warm enough. The part of me that was Nogitsune revelled in the novel sensation of renewed novelty.
The minor divining ritual I had enacted over the Saturday Valley News lead me to the front door of what I assumed to be the Schroecks' home. I knocked and was greeted by who I assumed to be Bob himself. Stepping inside, I took a leaf from a hidden pocket and placed it on my forehead, switching to my "clubbing" costume. I removed the stiletto heels and exchanged pleasantries with my host.
The nervousness I felt in the room was palpable. There were several of the blue-and-gold uniforms of the Legendary present, but I was apparently the first of the Infamous to arrive. I found a stool and sat with my legs crossed demurely. I winced internally at that, but one of the things that truly bothered me about the change was how little it bothered me.
[to be editted once we figure out who all will be there when Nogi-me arrives]
''We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat
them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.''

-- James Nicoll
I exchanged phone numbers with the Schroecks and paid them a quick phone call while online to confirm that their place was the meeting spot and that they were okay with that.
And my wasn't that an interesting conversation! It was then that I decided that my old name was no more. My voice can't possibly be disguised as a man's. I did introduce myself as Logan at first, but Bob kept calling me Lora, and I could hardly blame him. I told him to not worry about it and call me Lora'Lai or just Lora from now on.
Arrangements were made and time's were agreed on. I told them I'd work out how to get there as soon as I figured out flying.
The change had happened almost right on the dot at 10:00PM Eastern. 9:00PM my time. All things considered, I had not called until nearly 1 in the morning on the East coast. It was midnight in Texas. Cloudy and cold with a little bit of rainy mist coming down.
Perfect flying weather if you're brave and don't want people to see you.
I wasted some minutes putting a duffel bag with clothes and consumables together. Then I stopped and slapped my forehead with the palm of my hand.
What was I doing? None of these things would fit anymore! And what if they did? If I was planning on actually flying there myself, did I really want to be carrying a duffel bag with me? I could make clothes out of thin air. I didn't need any of this!
I took off the t-shirt I had been wearing and after a moment's concentration and a swirl of motes of light I was clad in Lora's... MY... white tunic, boots and cape with the dark blue tights underneath.
I had a thought, and took off the cape to check. It was a clipped with what appeared to be real fasteners and such.
I dropped the cape. It disappeared. Okay. Interesting.
Once I reformed the cape, next came the flight. I already had some notion of how to do it from my Nova transformation.
A moments concentration and I was hovering off the floor, nice as you please.
(I've been told that my eyes have the standard Kheldian style energy streamers when I activate any of my powers, but I don't actually see them myself and they don't affect my vision at all.)
As I floated above the floor, I was, admittedly, starting to become very excited about the possibilities here.
(Sometimes someone asks me how this is done or how it feels to do it, but I really can't explain it! It's like having an extra limb or a tail. How do you manipulate it? How do explain it to someone who doesn't have one? How to explain color to a man blind from birth?)
A mad urge struck me, and I gave in to it. I spent some minutes getting the playlist together from my files on the computer and loading it onto my MP3 player. And then put the headphones in my ears. It was the only thing I took with me that night.
I went outside, locked the door, and put the house key under the floor mat of my car. (It had a keypad lock I could use to open it and retrieve the key later.)
Opening the gate to my little postage stamp of a yard I stepped inside quickly. Fortunately no cars had driven past while I had placed the key in the car. I was feeling more than a little self conscious at the moment.
The light mist of rain that had been coming down had cleared up for the moment, though it was still overcast. And I could feel that it was cold. But it didn't really affect me. It was also very quiet. No car noises. No one could see me at the moment and hopefully no one would notice my take off.
I tucked the MP3 player down the front of my tunic between my breasts, then felt for it under the fabric until I could feel the "Play" button and pressed it.
I closed my eyes for just a moment as the first faraway notes of John William's Superman anthem began to play, then opened them and launched myself straight up and punched through the top of the clouds and into the starry black just as the fanfare hit.
Sometimes it really pays to do things just right I think, don't you?
Flying is everything you've ever imagined it to be, only far far better. I could live with everything else, the gender swap, the loss of my old identity, just... everything... if I could just have this. I exulted, laughed out loud, and went for the stratosphere and to the edge of space.
A little over three hours later I touched down at Bob's house. I could have been there in around an hour, I later figured out, but navigating from the air is a little trickier than you might think. Especially at night. I had to go to New York first to pick up some landmarks I could recognize.
And yes, I'm embarrassed to say, I did take a time out to go swooping around the Statue of Liberty and the New York skyline including the Empire State.
(I really should apologize at some point in the near future to the Kennedy ATC guys. I honestly didn't think they could track human sized objects! And I found out later I wasn't the only one that night who had the idea to buzz the Big Apple. The other supers must have given them fits!)
I wound up being one of the first to reach our host's home anyway, as it turned out. Fortunately, he had given me very good directions and once I found his street, finding the house was not a problem. I touched down in the back yard, away from the street.
(I'll hold off on anything further until I get some other POV from Bob or someone else.)-Logan
"Wake up! Time for SCIENCE!"
-Adam Savage

The Hunterminator

Note: Dang, just as I'm typing a part about getting shot at by a jet on account of being a misterious object flying over the border and way too close to new-york for comfort, a part get's written that contradicts it. I knew I shouldn't have waited for my dinner break to write
I had done it again. For some reason, my transformation into Yukiyo also included the uncanny ability to break electronical devices, and I had just broken the microwave while attempting to heat up some leftovers. How I managed to do it when that's something I do several times a week, I don't know, but I managed it. My mp3 player, my alarm clock and my toaster were other things that I managed to break in not even 24 hours.
As I was holding my burning hand under the plate, I glanced at my computer. I hadn't touched it since the transformation, partly because I didn't know what had caused the transformation, and partly because I didn't want to break it. But, due to my lack of television, it was still my best bet for information.
As I ate, I decided that I needed to see if it was possible for me to manipulate electronics without breaking them, so once I was done, I took my cheap old clock and tried to change the hour breaking it.
I focused on it, and I had no troubles. But then, something distracted me and, during the minute I was not looking at what my hands were doing, I managed to make it stop working entirely and I had absolutely no idea how I did it.
I could only hypothesise that, as long as I was entirely focused, I could succeed but that if, at any point, my hands were allowed to work without supervision, I would fail. I tested that with the few electronics that still worked, and as far as I could see, I was right.
I kept practicing and, after several minutes, I had managed to train myself to stop moving my hands whenever I wasn't looking. Taking the habit of crossing them over my chest whenever I got distracted also helped improve my odds of successfully going online to check the news high enough for me to risk it.
Almost immediately, I saw that I wasn't the only victim of whatever happened. Actually, several articles said that it systematically affected everyone who had been playing in Virtue at the same time I was struck. I suddenly realised that a large proportion of the Legendary had been playing that evening, so I immediately 'seek-and-poke'ed the URL and checked. Nope, I definitely wasn't the only one and the situation seemed to be bad enough that Bob had offered that everyone regroup at his house.
I quickly wrote the address down and flew off towards the US. Almost immediately, I wondered how I was supposed to actually find my destination. However, a moment's thought brought to mind a spell that Yukiyo often used for such things, and I quickly casted it.
I plummeted a few feet before I recovered from the dizzy sensation of gaining an extra sense. It was odd really, I now knew exactly what direction to go, and how far. It was sort of a real life equivalent of the compass in CoH.
It took a surprisingly small amount of time to get there, the game severely underestimate the speed you fly when it's triple slotted for speed. I quickly landed and, hoping I was not late for the meeting, I knocked on the door.
There, Yukiyo has arrived. It's around 4 or 5 PM eastern on the day following the transformation, I'm not sure where exactly that sits in the timeline.
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