new plot @ new avalon
Looking back into New Avalon as a GPSL, yay! Writing out my plotlines for each character is a lot harder than I expected it to be if I excluded, like, social lines.
But of my original characters, I'm always going to be proudest of these guys. :x Some of them I've had for almost ten years, others less than a year, but I'm so proud of these guys and the world/culture that's been built around them.
This exercise is really interesting for me — I'm not the best with coming up with plots, and this is definitely a way to force me to come up with reasons why my character exists in a game — what is their purpose, what are their story arcs, what do they specifically bring to the table?
steven barnes | agent 11 AGE 32 • WINTER SOLDIER/BLACK WIDOW • SHIELD AGENT • shieldsniper
Did You Back Up Your Files?
Steven has been gone for several months, on mission abroad. However, he's been gone for longer than usual — because Hydra got hold of him and installed brainwashing architecture in his head, allowing them to wipe and rewrite commands in his mind. Steven went off mission and began sabotaging it for Hydra, and nearly killed Marvel. Recognizing it was brainwashing rather than betrayal, Marvel brought him to a STRIKE facility to be helped. STRIKE did their best to get rid of what Hydra did to him, but Steven's memories kept deteriorating further. The only thing likely to save him was a complete mind wipe.
However, Luka was able to save him like one might back up a crashed hard drive: a complete memory wipe was followed by a complete memory re-upload, reconstructed from a memory scan that Steven had requested a year before, as insurance against this kind of thing (given what happened with his parents). So, Steven is missing the last year of his memory, and the memories he does have are essentially artificial, re-implanted into his mind using the same brainwashing technology that was used to turn him against SHIELD.
He's back home, on leave for other reasons, and only Marvel, Luka, and Eve know the truth. He's fine, but the upload isn't completely perfect, and there are slight gaps in his memory that can kind of be excused by "Steven's abroad all the time, so he probably missed that."
Wanted: One person who was close to Steven that Steven can't remember at all through some fluke.
Though Steven is being kept at home for observation after his memory upload, Steven's primary reason for staying in New Avalon is to watch over and take care of his brother. Call it a favor for saving his mind, but Steven feels obligated to stay at his brother's side and spend as much time with him as he can. He's missed a lot of Luka's life because of being abroad with SHIELD, and he's not willing to miss any more.
Wanted: One of Luka's doctors or another person close to Luka, someone he can potentially butt heads with and/or befriend. Jo and I talked about another Stark sibling around Steven's age or older (not related to Steven but related to Luka through Natasha) — someone who's really following in Tony's footsteps, with some not-quite-brotherly tension regarding Steven.
How Do Person?
Steven's back in town, and he's on leave to take care of Luka and to make sure his head's stable. The real problem, though, is that Steven is so used to being an undercover agent married to the job that he's not really good at taking time off. He lies casually, he skirts around commitments, he's hard to get to know. He's not trying to be a dick, he's just so used to tossing up a persona that he forgets to open himself up to real relationships.
Wanted: People who can be adversely affected by this, or be taken up with how dang charming he can be, etc.
cal barton | hawkeye AGE 28 • HAWKEYE/SPIDER-WOMAN • AVENGERS (LEADER) • ontarget
The Avengers have been more or less nonexistent since 2010, after Marvel was revealed to have been impersonating Justice. The subsequent PR fallout was too much for the team to take, and there have been no Avengers for five years. However, Cal is changing all that and taking it upon himself to revive the legacy with a ragtag group that only hope they can live up to the name.
Wanted: 3-5 members to join Hawkeye and Squirrel Boy as Avengers.
A Temporary Remedy
Several months ago, a Haze descended upon New York, with the capability to mess with people's powers on a genetic level. For some people, this jumpstarted new abilities — Cal's girlfriend froze time in the whole city. For Cal, however, this jumpstarted latent/trace Pym particles in his body that he inherited from his father, causing them to multiply and act in unpredictable and dangerous ways. Their biggest effect was on his nervous system, causing tingling, numbness, and loss of motor control.
After several months of getting rapidly worse, Milo Pym managed to create a serum that would keep the particles temporarily at bay. Within a few weeks, Cal was feeling back mostly back to normal — but the catch is this: Cal's condition is only lessened if he has an injection every morning (Milo is working on a better way of doing this). Without his treatment, Cal's condition will rapidly deteriorate as the particles go out of control again.
Now that Cal is restarting the Avengers, he's doing what he can to keep this information secret. He doesn't want people (i.e. enemies) getting ahold of this information.
Wanted: Someone other than Milo who might be responsible for Cal's care — because Milo's not a doctor, and he's also played by me. An Avengers physician, or someone who works at Stark Memorial and has Cal, Luka, and Owen as patients, etc.
Only As Good As The Tools You Use
Cal's an archer, and he's exceptionally good at it (obviously), but there's only so much you can do when your best skills are with a piece of technology that hasn't changed much for a few thousand years. If he's going to lead the Avengers, especially if he's going to lead it while his hands can still get a little numb, he needs some tech upgrades for his bow and his arrows. Maybe a hoverboard. He wants a hoverboard.
Wanted: A partnership with Luka to create his weapons, including infinite energy-bolt arrows.
Mother's Little Princess
Evangeline's daughter Astrid has her grandfather's powers — she blasts plasma beams from her eyes without any control whatsoever and has to cover her eyes with ruby quartz at all times. Astrid is quiet, proper, stylish, and overworked, and there's some debate as to whether Evangeline is overly strict or if that's simply Astrid's personality.
Wanted: Astrid's father — Evangeline doesn't have a romantic relationship with him, but he could be a friend, definitely a mutant. Evangeline hasn't told anyone about Astrid's father and he has no parental rights, so this would be a total secret.
Queen Bee of the Academy
Evangeline is headmistress of the New Avalon Academy, which is responsible for the education of most characters in-game.
Wanted: Employees of NAA.
What Really Happened In Canada
As a child, Evangeline was so psychically vulnerable that she was constantly overwhelmed by the thoughts of others, and she was little more than an echo chamber for other people. Everything about her now exemplifies the strict control she has over her abilities, but she still slips up on occasion. She'll say that she doesn't lead the X-Men anymore because of her daughter, but it has more do so with the fact that Evangeline's control is fallible, and when she loses that control she can and will endanger others. She has too much pride to admit to this.
Evangeline can be exploited by other psychics despite her power, or incapacitated if her control is shaken.
Never Talk Politics, Darling
Evangeline's family is partially responsible for the funding and creation of New Avalon. As separated from the rest of New York as NA already is, there's a district within a district — a mutant-centered neighborhood (similar to what District X once was), that is being warily watched for signs of separatism. Mutants are more feared than other powered individuals — there's a notion that mutants have their own separate culture (they do) and view themselves as more of a community (they do). Mutant rights and mutant representation have been hot-button topics in the media these days, and conservative politicians have found it convenient to pick mutants as the source of a lot of the country's problems.
Evangeline has not made many friends in the public eye. Her father was a pretty staunch separatist, but Evangeline's political methods play both sides: she strongly believes that mutants and humans are meant to coexist, but that mutants need to recognize that they are feared and their powers are dangerous. She advocates separate schooling to train mutants in their abilities, and condemns the actions of mutant terrorists who are simply making it more difficult for the rest of them to live peacefully. Among mutant activists, she's considered an apologist.
Depending on the political climate and plot events of the game, Evangeline might tighten the noose on separatist activities — or she'll swing the other way and go Magneto on everyone.
kinah guthrie-jalili AGE 32 • ICARUS/DUST • PHYSICIAN • maidofthemists
The Doctor Is In
Kinah has been back in the States for about a year and a half, after an anti-mutant attack on her hospital in Iran killed her husband. She's currently living in North New Avalon and works extensively as a physician for mutants, specifically. Given that a lot of mutants (especially those who don't look human) often live on the fringes of society or even underground, and are likely to live in poverty, Kinah does a lot of work for free and often operates out of her home on her off hours. She's not The Night Nurse, but if there's something that Annabel can't handle she'll sometimes call Kinah in for emergencies — but Kinah's attention largely focuses on the mutant community.
Wanted: A mutant to be a regular patient of Kinah's, other people who see her, doctor colleagues, etc.
The Mutant Problem
Kinah doesn't consider herself to be overly pro-mutant, but she's definitely gotten involved with the mutant community and devoted her attention and her career to primarily dealing with mutants. If push comes to shove and lines are drawn, it's likely that Kinah would end up separating herself from humans in order to be with fellow mutants.
Wanted: I kind of dig the idea of mutants being their own separate problem here and having their own little subculture, I want to focus on that, that's rad.
Letting Go And Moving On
Kinah's husband Nasser died in 2014, and while Kinah doesn't feel like she wants to move on, I have a lot of ideas about her ending up in kind of a slow-burn romance. I can see her as something of a morality pet for a darker personality, she's the type who can stand up to that without breaking. Shhheeee is also not straight this time around, but I don't think she's explored that yet — so she's likely to get blindsided by an attraction to another woman and I'm really interested to see something like that.
Wanted: Psst. Pella.
jack murdock | silent knight AGE 30 • DAREDEVIL/MILLA DONOVAN • VIGILANTE • TEACHING ASSISTANT • oversensed
Jack continues his legacy as an illegal street-level vigilante and has a network of contacts and other superheroes that operate sort of as a second underground society. If people aren't part of that next-generation community (i.e., our characters), they don't know Jack's identity.
Most of what Jack does involves organized crime, drug rings, and a little ongoing problem regarding some immortal ninjas.
Wanted: Other street-level heroes! Ongoing organized crime plot, a Wilson Fisk-style villain line where Jack has a sort of... frenemy, I guess? Pella might be something like that — not that she's a villain, but her time as the Punisher would have had her butting heads with Jack.
Nelson and Murdock
Jack is a permanent resident of Annabel's home for wayward superheroes, which is currently based out of the Hell's Kitchen townhouse that used to belong to Jack's father. He doesn't get terribly involved in Annabel's dealings with other superheroes, and sometimes the frequent guests can be stressful for Jack — but it's all part of the aforementioned vigilante network.
Still working on how, but Annabel and Jack are going to get tied up in a "sins of their fathers" kind of plot, probably hanging on Jack's "going off grid and training with the Chaste" period from a few years ago.
Wanted: Superheroes that crash there sometimes!
I Am Not Daredevil
"Silent Knight" isn't a name that Jack gave himself. He's been operating without a defined persona for over a decade, in order to preserve his secret identity. It was relatively well known that Matt Murdock was "allegedly" Daredevil (though there was a mass retcon that made Matt's identity secret again), and Jack has avoided taking on the mantle in order to protect himself. I'd like for a series of events (possibly whatever plot he has with Annabel) to cause Jack to take up the title of Daredevil and claim it for himself at last.
Go Where No Man Can Go
Milo's primary conflict with Vic centers on the fact that Vic is devoted to being a superhero, and Milo wants nothing to do with it and is left at home waiting for him. However, I'd love it if Milo got roped into a Defenders job because Milo's ability to shrink and/or access the Microverse. Infiltrating a secret facility? Saving someone's life by getting tiny and entering their bloodstream?
Wanted: The right mission!
That "World's Best Dad" Mug Is Full Of Bullshit
When Jack was ten, Milo was babysitting him and left him in a library. Overnight. Milo's absentminded and while he has good intentions, he just doesn't think — and that means being careless with Danny. He'll leave him in the grocery store, or leave things around that Danny shouldn't play with — he's not going to put him in extreme danger, but there's always the threat of danger because Milo's careless. I'm so sorry, Vic.
At some point, this might cause a crisis where Milo actually thinks about this and really does feel he's a horrible father and shouldn't be a father, or he might just shrug and say "babies are durable" and keep going on, I'm not sure. But he's definitely not an organized or responsible dad. He loves his son, but he's pretty infuriating.
The Absent-Minded Professor
Milo's irresponsible and forgetful. He's prone to impulse buys and leaving everything a mess. I definitely want to bring this into play more often, with possible plot consequences but largely just for laughs. It gets worse when Milo's been using his powers, because Pym particles affect mental stability.
And that's one thing at home, but he's also a researcher leading teams at a lab, so I'd like him to have some coworkers or something who have to deal with his eccentricities. Or a PR manager — honestly, he should have a PR manager with how famous he is, and he just drives that person NUTS.
Wanted: This isn't related but I got sidetracked and realized Milo doesn't have a lot of friends. Can people be his friends??
gale richards AGE UNKNOWN • MR. FANTASTIC/INVISIBLE WOMAN • TIME TRAVELER • anachronicman
Everyone Fucking Hates Time Travel
Gale Richards disappeared in 2010, days shy of his fifth birthday. It was a massive scandal at the time and launched a huge investigation, and it remains a mystery on par with the Lindbergh baby and JonBenet Ramsey. There was a made-for-TV movie about it that premiered last year that occasionally runs on cable, and it's a favorite subject of true crime shows.
But surprise! Gale Richards is alive — at least, he says he is. When the Avengers find him lost and disoriented during a mission, they're not sure what to believe, especially after he claims he's a time traveler with no way to control his abilities.
Wanted: Someone who was a suspect in Gale's original disappearance, someone who's entirely skeptical of Gale's return (who isn't Cal) and doesn't believe for a second that he's who he says he is, etc. You guys wouldn't it be fucking fabulous if he was faking all along that'd be great
The Fall of the Future Foundation
Gale should have returned to considerable wealth as the son of Reed Richards and Sue Storm, but things have gone to hell for the Fantastic Four/Future Foundation since his disappearance. His supposed abduction/murder tore the family apart, with his parents and their colleagues doing everything possible to find him. They dredged up old enemies. They traveled to other planets. They hopped dimensions. Over the years, almost all attention was devoted to finding Gale (and cleaning up the messes they found along the way).
But Gale was too elusive to find, and "our son might be a time traveler" was on the last of their ideas as to where he could have gone. The tension tore apart Reed and Sue's already rocky marriage, and the stress ate at their friendships. Reed's behavior grew more and more erratic as the obsession ate at him.
Reed and Sue's whereabouts are currently unknown. They've been missing for two years, after traveling to another dimension to continue their search. All attempts to get to them have failed. At this point, they're presumed dead. (Other FF members may have gone along but I leave this up to other people.)
With Reed gone, the Future Foundation fell into a series of different hands, who squandered away resources and caused at least two supervillain origins. Gale has returned, without parents and without inheritance.
Wanted: Other characters affected by the fractured FF, people involved in the search for Gale, possibly other Richards siblings who have lost everything.
Let's Party Like It's 1799
Gale's control over his powers is pretty touch-and-go. In theory, he's got infinite control over time, but his powers aren't stable. He'll learn how to make use of "keys" and "anchors" to control his powers — focusing on an object from a certain time in order to access that time, and focusing on an object in order to return to the game's present. He has several latent abilties that potentially put him on par with his brother Franklin, so there's some fun stuff to explore later on regarding alternate timelines, trapping people in time, slowing his own aging and rendering himself effectively immortal, etc.
Wanted: A partnership with Caylie Gwynn, because I think their powers combined can help stabilize Gale's abilities when creating time portals. Also, missions to other time periods!
Six years seems like an exceptionally short time when you spend most of it in recovery for massive injuries and coping with emotional as well as physical scars. Owen's recently come out of self-imposed isolation, only to find that there's a movie being made about the District X incident. For someone as private as Owen, it's the last thing he wants.
Eventually, there will also be a documentary centering on Marvel and his time posing as Justice.
Wanted: Someone involved in the making of said documentary. Maybe another one of the ex-Avengers (or Avengers support staff) involved in either District X or the aftermath wrote a tell-all book that's the source of all of this.
I'd really like Owen to kind of serve as some kind of superhero tactician, offering advice or leading a team from the background — I'd give him the Avengers, but Cal is leading the Avengers and I don't want to double. If he's not an active person in the field, he might serve as a Charlie with Angels, or assisting a team with some kind of leaderly advice.
Wanted: A team and/or superheroes to mentor.
Well, The Spandex Doesn't Fit Anymore
Owen has been retired and out of the public eye for a while. He's just starting to be less of a hermit, and at some point I want Owen to have to do some kind of rescue mission or other superhero feat despite the fact that he has no powers and has other injuries to work around. This kind of ties in with the previous one — he's settled hiding away and doing his artwork/sculpture and working on cars, but the superhero life never totally leaves people, and a superhero can never totally give up the need to act in a crisis.
Wanted: Someone to save, idk. :)
billy sinclair | fenris AGE 22 • HRIMHARI/WOLFSBANE • DEFENDERS • X-FACTOR INVESTIGATIONS (CO-OWNER) • wolfyprince
The Plucky PIs
Caylie and Billy have recently purchased the failing X-Factor Investigations and they're doing their best to turn it around into a business despite being young and inexperienced. They're going to turn this place around and so some real good in the world, damn it!
Wanted: A couple of ragtag employees, and anyone willing to hire them to do some detective work.
Surprise, You're Immortal!
Billy is Asgardian by blood, great-grandson of Loki, but he's completely disconnected from Asgard culturally. In fact, he knows very little of his heritage — something that I'd like to see change in the future (but my knowledge of Marvel's Asgard is really, really poor). The Haze caused a surge in Billy's abilities, bringing him up to full strength (some of his strength/power was siphoned from him while he was still in utero) and giving him a regenerative healing factor that I want him to find out about in-game with a recovery from a supposedly fatal injury.
Little Bad Wolf
Billy's the baby in the Defenders group, and he has something of an anger management problem. He's "poorly trained", if you want to put it that way — his feral instincts get the better of him and he can have an extremely violent streak (as Vic has experienced firsthand). While he's improved drastically since taking off and going on his own adventure with Dean Green, he can be something of a wildcard at times. I'd like to have Billy stretch his legs and come into his own as a superhero, but have it be something of a struggle for him to be something other than dangerous.