Monday, August 27, 2012

Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: New Runaways #5

According to Doc, the next two sessions will be the two-part season finale for our 'MHR: New Runaways' mini-campaign. Until then, here's Jenny's account of the events from the most recent session...

The Cast
Alex Murphy (played by Blair) – Formerly the school’s resident drug dealer, Murphy is now attempting to establish himself as team leader in the fight against the forces of evil. He has the ability to manipulate air.
Blaine Burton (played by Elliot) – Teenage single dad with the ability to manipulate inanimate objects; his sympathies are currently leaning towards the Brotherhood’s ideology, in light of recent events.
Chad Hudson (played by Heather) – Earth manipulating jerkass jock.
Jenny Darkholme (played by me) – Orphan with a strong sense of responsibility and potentially destined to be one of the guardians of the multiverse. She has the ability to teleport, and to manipulate energy. One of the main antagonists so far appears to be an older, evil version of her.
TE Lawrence (played by Anna) – An undercover android created by SHIELD and sent to track down the source of MGH being sold on the Midtown High School campus. As of episode two, his memory banks have been erased except for his cover identity and a single directive: ‘Save as many as you can.’
Disclaimer: The character of Jenny Everywhere is available for use by anyone, with only one condition. This paragraph must be included in any publication involving Jenny Everywhere, in order that others may use this property as they wish. All rights reversed.

After the shitstorm at the Sanctum Sanctorum, we were on our way back to the Xavier Mansion to pick up Blaine's pet animatronic T-Rex, Elpheba...oh, didn't I mention? Yeah, when Blaine found out about Ruth's abduction earlier, he kinda brought the animatronic T-Rex in the Toys R Us store at Times Square to life and went on a rampage through the city before meeting up with us at the mansion. We left it there because...well, it's a freaking T-Rex and we're fugitives. Not exactly the most low-key mode of transport, yo.

But like I was saying, we were on our way to pick up Elpheba with more of those green guys on our tail (according to Lawrence they're called Skrulls, though I'm not sure how he knew that), and we trashed our car trying to outrun them. Since our getaway wasn't working out so smooth, I decided to try teleporting us directly to the Xavier Mansion instead, seems the universe had other plans. Instead of arriving on the grounds of the Xavier Mansion, we appeared in the sky over the Baxter Building. Luckily for us, Susan Storm of the Fantastic Four was up on the roof, and managed to control our fall with her forcefields, while also beating back a couple'a Skrulls, all while looking pretty beat up. Is that seriously badass or what?

Turns out the bad guys were after Susan's kids, just like they'd gone after Beth, so we all headed down into the building to save the kids. We saw pieces'a rock lying around on the way, which seem to have been shed by the Thing. Susan outfitted Chad with a 'Thing Suit' after seeing his earth manipulation powers, and then we made our way to where the kids were being kept. Along the way, we passed through a dimensional door, and I got another flash of that white space with all the other versions of me in it. Someone threw She-Hulk into me, but I managed to separate myself from her before she went crashing through one of the walls by teleporting out. Good thing I did...that would have really hurt. I also fought off a Skrull who called me 'Master'. I can only assume he’d mistook me for 'evil older me'. Didn't much like that, so I ran the Skrull through with my sword and fried the sucker by channelling energy through it....what? He made me angry.

When I'd taken the Skrull down, more of the silver slug things I'd seen before started bleeding out of him. Which is when Lawrence showed up, tried to push me aside to get to the Skrull's body, but I moved out of the way. Lucky thing too, he took out a chunk of the wall while trying to swipe me outta the way; could have been my darned head. I noticed one of those slug things moving between his eyes, and before I could stop him he knelt down and started...absorbing these slugs into himself, calling them 'chums' (but then, he calls everyone and everything 'chum', so that's no big surprise or anything) and then started twitching and jerking in a sorta mechanical way.

Susan put Lawrence in some kind of stasis field, and then we all went into the main lab. She left him on a bed and went into the next room to go check on the kids. Except when she did, we heard the telltale sound of my teleportation power and then she was talking to somebody. No prizes for guessing who. We tried to get into the room, but Chad being the big idiot he is just stood there all slack-jawed, blocking the door, and I wasn't confident about teleporting with all the dimensional safeguards they had in the building. By the time we got into the room, Susan was unconscious, and her daughter Valeria was kneeling over her. Then she saw me, and demanded to know what 'I' had done to her mother and 'where was Franklin'? I tried telling her it wasn't me, but she wasn't listening. She took over control of Chad's Thing Suit - lucky for him he'd stepped out of it by this point - and zapped me with an electricity blast from the gadget she had on her arm while the Thing Suit got busy beating me down.

Luckily, she figured out I wasn't the same woman as the one who attacked her mom and took Franklin, and called off the Thing Suit. Between this and my collision with She-Hulk's earlier, I was feeling a little boneless by now. I got on a scanner bed thingy and Valeria stuck me with some dimensional needles which gave me another flash of that white room. Don't know what was in them, but they fixed me up pretty good.

Valeria's a bit of a whizz-kid, it turns out. She worked out that her mother had been injected with the same 'cure' that had robbed the X-Men of their powers - so it doesn't just work on mutants, apparently - and identified it as being a much more advanced version of some sort of nanotechnology that her father had been working on. She operated the computers to find out what happened to the rest of the Fantastic Four. Ben Grimm appeared to have reverted to his human form, and Reed Richards had been tied up around one of their vehicles in the hanger bay. Me and Murph went to untangle Richards, while Chad was sent to recover Grimm and She-Hulk, leaving Blaine to watch Beth and Valeria.

With Richards to assist - and Susan conscious again - we discovered more about the nanothings. The metal slugs that infested Lawrence seemed to be of similar design. Also, Richards ruled out the possibility of simply knocking out the nanothings with EMP or something; apparently they're programmed to attack the host if anyone tries something like that. Richards also said he was fairly sure that there was no 'time travel' involved here, so maybe Blaine will shut up about how I'm going to turn evil now. I also gave Richards the black box from the X-Men's jet - he called it the Blackbird - so that he could work out what happened to them, and Chad gave them a sample of the cure he'd picked up somewhere. 

We started forming a plan. Richards and Valeria figured they could put together some kind of doohickey to prevent Evil Me from being able to teleport, and then we could give her a dose of her own medicine to put her out of business. The sample Chad provided was incomplete though, so they'd need to work on it a bit to get it up to spec.

Of course, then we came under attack from a bunch of Iron Man suits. I headed up top to blast them from the roof, Blaine managed to commandeer one of the suits and got some tech support from some computerised voice and Tony Stark himself, as well as aerial support from a toy dragon he'd summoned and Elpheba, who he'd somehow managed to get rigged up with a freaking jet-pack! Meanwhile Murph gave Chad and She-Hulk a boost to help them get in the fight. Back in the lab, Valeria and Richards worked on the...the...anti-teleport doohickey - I forget the technical name - and tried to synthesize a version of the 'cure'. Some point during the fight, we lost contact with Stark. Not sure exactly what happened, but it sounded like my other self got to him.

We defeated the Iron Man suits and returned to the lab, where Richards and Valeria were just about finished. While working on the cure and the anti-teleport device, they'd also somehow found time to analyse the black box from the X-Men's Blackbird. All we saw was Beast and Cyclops talking, then we heard someone - Jean Grey apparently - screaming and the picture cut out. Richards seemed to think this had something to do with a thing called the 'Phoenix Force'. He wasn't real clear on what this thing was, except that it was inside of Jean Grey, and the last time it was destroyed entire planets. Richards also had a programme running which constantly assessed threat levels of different things in the universe, and right then 'Franklin's Power Set' was at the top of the list. According to Richards, Franklin had enough power to create whole new realities, powers which he had kept secret from his son.

It wasn’t real clear yet what Evil Me's ultimate plan was: implant the Phoenix into herself, or into Franklin? According to Richards, with the power that Evil Me has it would be bad enough if she took it into herself, but if she put it in Franklin...whatever the case, Richards seemed pretty sure she meant to destroy the universe.

He asked me where I would go if I were planning on doing that, but before I could answer I heard my own - psychotically grinning - voice coming from behind me: 'Oh, well, I wouldn't beat around the bush...'

To be continued...

New Runaways #6a will be online next Monday @ 6:00pm. Stay tuned! 

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