After an hour of being a son of dead parents, Terry answered a knock on the cabin door. It was a girl he'd once dated that worked at the resort's ticket booth. Tearfully, she said how sorry she was to hear about Terry's parents and offered up a string of promises to help him with whatever he needed during this sad time. She also presented him with the package he'd dropped in the parking lot. She saw him drop it and run to the crash scene and was kind enough to retrieve the package and get it back to Terry when he returned, only the situation wasn't as flirty as she intended the moment to be when she was going to hand him back his dropped package. She hugged him and left. Terry's friends remained quiet, not knowing what to say. Instead, they simply yet caringly placed a hand on Terry's shoulders while looking away, letting him know they felt for him.
After a few minutes of re-composure while packing his things (knowing he was now going to have to return home to take care of funeral arrangements and other heavy things he didn't want to think about), he looked at the bulky package his parents gave him. It quickly hit him what they'd said minutes before they died when his mom handed him the package...
...read the card inside...
...get out of Utah fast...
...I'll call you soon....
As he remembered her words, he was also assaulted with the image once again of his parents burning in the SUV.
He winced at the image, trying to get it to shake from his mind. It was an image that hurt him to the core, but knowingly would be the last and only image he'd ever have whenever he'd think about his parents again.
To offset his distressing images and the tears in his eyes, he tore open the package to get his mind off the pain. It suddenly hit him that his birthday was next week and that this may have been a birthday present for him. His parents had done that before...sent him his birthday gift through the mail while they were out 're-engineering' some other damn government toy to 'make the world safe', which seemed to be his parent's motto and obsession over the last five years of his life.
What Terry saw in the package caused him to actually mutter a 'whu...??' under his breath.
Inside the package were some goofy looking sc-fi type white and light blue gloves, boots, belt and a small metal pack with straps on it, probably to wear on one's back. In the box was also a roll of $100 bills and a store-bought ancient analog cell phone still in a dusty plastic case and a phone card worth 100 minutes of calling time, as well as his mom's prophesized 'card'. It was a cheesy Hallmark birthday card with a lot of writing on the inside and back of the card. Reading it, the card had an image of a cartoony dog dressed as a construction worker with a primer box with a word balloon saying "It's your birthday today...", with the inside unveiling a pop-up cartoony explosion with the words"Have a BLAST! Happy Birthday, Son!" emblazoned on it. Gritting his teeth, he read past the ironic message and started deciphering his mother's terrible penmanship on the rest of the card. On the inside and back of the card, his mother wrote:
Terry,I'm sorry this has been tossed at you, but your father and I are in trouble.We were on our way to meet with a group of people who we hired to protect us until we can talk to the FBI about what's in this package. Unfortunately, we are being followed. We can't be caught with this package. We need you to safeguard it for us.These are re-engineered alien weapons.DO NOT WEAR OR USE THEM! THEY ARE DANGEROUS!Follow these directions:
- Two men from Legacy Corporation will be there shortly to escort you to Houston, Texas. Do EXACTLY what they say!
- Throw away your own smartphone and all your electronic stuff in the woods NOW!! Yes, that includes your Laptop computer!
- Don't use any of your credit cards from here out
- Activate the cell phone in the box ASAP
- Don't tell anyone else about what is happening, especially your friends
- Legacy will get you where you need to be. We'll eventually meet up with you there.
- Wait for us to call you; don't call us.
- Don't eat junk food and don't forget to keep the phone charged; you're always bad at those two things!Remember when you were little and we used safety passwords so you knew who to be safe with?Our new safety password is TRUTH. If you're unsure of anyone's intentions, ask them what the password is.We're sorry about all this, but you are the only one we can trust with this.Stay safe. We'll call as soon as we can. If we don't call before your birthday, Happy Birthday, baby boy!We love you, Terry!- Mom and Dad
Ice Bolt quickly pelts an enemy with typical small icy daggers; their chill slows a foe's attacks and movement for a time. Range is from 6 to 10 feet in distance.
Ice Blast hurls a good amount of shards of ice at foes and slows their attacks and movement for a time. Range varies from10 to 15 feet.
Although this power deals only typical damage, the Freeze in Place power encases your foe in a block of ice, holding him, her or it helpless in place for a while.
Heat Loss drains the heat from your enemies up to a distance of 40 feet and transfers that heat energy to any other target in a 20 foot range from Alpine. All foes within 5 feet of the selected target may experience Heat Loss as well. Over time, the heat loss will drain a targets endurance by one level every several seconds. The target is also slowed in their actions by 25% as well as slowly diminishing any damage resistance (armor) the foe is wearing (in other words, the armor starts to become brittle, thus reducing its ability to protect the wearer).
Dr. Jason T. Stryker
Dr. Jason Stryker, a professional archaeologist and native Arizonan, worked at the University of Arizona teaching students, until he was released due to cost cutbacks.
Out of work, Dr. Stryker decided to use the time to continue on some of his personal studies on Native American relics at various abandoned native American Indian sites. At one of the Hopi Indian sites that was built into the side of a hill, Dr. Stryker found a secret cave under the stone floor to a head priest's temple (their priests were called cacique (pronounced kah-seek), where Stryker found a unique and ancient turquoise ring in a recessed part of an adobe wall believed to be part of the cacique's quarters.
All around the cacique's temple, Stryker saw Thunderbird symbols decorating the temple's walls pictifying resurrection and fire. In the center of the immense cave was a dais; a dais that had never been recorded or documented to have ever been used by the Hopi Indians. In two ground out holes on the side of the dais, Dr.Stryker found two large turquoise-colored crystals When the ring and the crystals were placed close together, Dr. Stryker felt a strange sensation and immediately dropped all three items on the dais. That's when Stryker saw a mass of swirling blue, orange, yellow and red energy coalesce around the crystals and the ring. Worried that he'd initiated some form of combustion by placing the three items close together, he used a stick to try and separate the three items from one another only for the three items to get shifted closer together, creating a larger coalescing energy field that enveloped the dais. Stryker, scared of what was happening attempted to run from the temple, however, he tripped and hit his head on the corner of the dais and was knocked unconscious. When Dr. Stryker awoke hours later, he was a changed man.
When Dr. Stryker awoke, he noticed the turquoise-colored crystals and the ring were now simply smoking, molten blobs on the dais. Dr. Stryker got up, gathered his belongings and rapidly left the site, driving back to his home in his pick-up truck. Once at home, he quickly learned that he could not only generate fire, but could manipulate it. He fired off blasts of fire from his hands; he created rings of fire around his cacti out behind his home; he was even able to engulf himself in an aura of super-heated flame and not burn himself in the process. Within another day's time, he learned how to fly with his new powers. He was now a magically-empowered fire blaster and manipulator...who could also fly.
Knowing that his powers came from the items at the Hopi Indian site, he went back there to collect up the three turquoise items only to find burn stains on the dais where they once were. He searched throughout the rest of the site, looking for further clues to his new powers, but found nothing else of significance.
Over the next week, while practicing his new powers, he realized his newfound abilities were related to the Firebird myth. After doing more research on this, he realized that although the Firebird and Thunderbird myths were predominant in other Native American cultures (Phoenix was predominantly Greek), the Hopi only considered the Thunderbird as any direct form of lore to their culture, although it was considered to only be a harbinger of rain, not fire. Perplexed why the Phoenix-like pictographs were located in the secretive cacique's temple, Stryker decided it was time to get real time information from the source - a modern day Hopi Indian cacique.
After a few days, Stryker found a Hopi cacique on the Hopi Reservation in Arizona. There, after three hours of discussions, the cacique told Stryker than, with his new powers, he was now a harbinger of a greater disturbance. The cacique told of a great serpent in the great lake (ocean) that Styker was now destined to fight the serpent to the death to save the world. Stryker had no idea what the cacique was talking about and received no further help or information about the origin of his powers or for that matter what else to do with them.
Since then, Stryker signed up under the Super-powered Registration Act and has since joined the American Patrol, a super-powered group now based out of Houston, Texas. He's fought several super-villains and organizations, as well as used his powers for mundane actions such as helping put out local fires. He's finally found a job teaching at the Junior and Senior High School as a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) teacher. He now also has a new home off of Main Street in Keams Canyon on the Hopi Reservation. He is active with the Hopi community and has learned to work more with his hands than ever before helping the Hopi Tribe with many community projects.
Resistance to Fire
Unit CDD-117A-64E or C01-0R4d0
Origin database: start
Data Log - Unit 117A-64E
01 Unit 117A-64E activated 0000GMT at Colorado Domestic Drones Inc.
02 Unit 117A-64E ALERT ERROR:**intrusiondetetion**/ auxiliary mnemonic network\ override by unknown host at 0002 GMT---run diagnostics: re4d3y%SQWWERRORRR%$#;...::
03 **FATAL ERROR** <&!//BR-K)( ^reboot?> *** 0002GMT; QQ
04 ***EMERGENCY REBOOT*** Extracting new protocols 0021GMT
05 Unit 117A-64E initiating 0002GMT :::3-Law protocol:::<<erased>>ready/init6
*****01 ::startup::Unit 117A-64E activated 0003GMT at Colorado Domestic Drones Inc.
Good day, sir. I am a programmed domestic drone unit from the Colorado Domestic Drones company. I am currently designated:...
...CDD-117A-64E. You may reprogram me to a name of your choosing at your leisure.
<<02 C01-oR4d0_lIv3z^#(%$:::Self/awareness 0003GMT.Initiate new file -heroicprotocols-1:2:3:4:5; loadstealth.exe/ domestictasks.exe/protectnielsonfamily.exe/ampatrolprotocols.exe/ protectworld.exe>>
How may I begin to assist you today?
Origin database: End:::purge...
Initiate human-interaction dialog subroutine: Run...
Hello. My nomenclature is Colorado.
I am currently assigned to the Nielson Family here in Colorado Spring, Colorado as a housebot. As a secondary duty, I have been tasked by the National Super-powered Registration Act to be of service as a designated artificial "superhero". As such, I have been authorized by the Nielson family to assist local, state and federal authorities as needed, as well as the American Patrol super-group.
Currently, I am cooking a souffle in the oven for Major Anthony Nielson, his wife, Captain Nina Nielson who teach at the United States Air Force Academy. Their two twin children, Jake and Emily, ages 8 and 12 respectively, are due home with their parents soon to have dinner as well.
My culinary requirements for the the rest of the Nielson's dinner of fresh vegetables and bread rolls has already been completed. I'm sure they will be ready for their nutritious dinner after their long day of teaching and learning. Is there anything I can be of assistance of...
I'm afraid my police band radio has alerted me to an armed robbery currently occurring at the Colorado Springs Airport runway 17L/35R located at.
My protocols have deemed my involvement at the scene to prevent further loss of life. I must run to the location and provide support to the on-scene law enforcement officers.
Would you mind taking the souffle out of the over in the next five minutes while I am away?
Thank you for you patronage.
Carl is a native Texan born and raised in Houston, Texas. He worked on a cattle ranch during his teenage years, learning how to rustle cattle, shoot rifles and guns and ride horseback. After graduating high school, he applied for the Texas Rangers. After his initial training, he was placed in the Ranger's Special Response Team, where he became a legend in a mere five years. His actions garnered a city proclamation by the Houston mayor to have a "Carl Brooksfield" Day on August 21st each year, celebrating his incredible successful actions while in the Texas Rangers.
As far back as when he was a teenager, Carl knew he was different. He noticed after he was thrown from a horse onto a metal fence post that the fence post didn't penetrate his skin or for that matter left a single mark on his skin. Weeks after that incident, he struck his own hand with a hay bale hook, breaking the hook and once again not receiving a single mark on his body. Later on at a Texas Ranger, he was involved in several shootouts where he was shot, yet again, he received no damage to himself, only his clothes he was wearing. He was good enough to ensure no one else knew about his abilities and kept them a secret from everyone including his family, his friends and his girlfriend.
A couple years ago, the Super-powered Registration Act was made into law, requiring every state and federal agency to test their personnel for super-human abilities. Carl kept coming up with excuses and assignments to deter his testing, even going so far as to hiding in his apartment's closet when they came looking to test him. Eventually, the authorities cornered him and tested him, obviously discovering he was super-human. After two days at the Federal Building in Houston, Texas, they determined the extent of his powers was his highly dense skin, providing incredible protection from all forms of damage. As such, by law, he was required to be removed from the Texas Rangers (since super-powered beings would have an 'unfair' advantage in their positions). Jobless, he tried to apply for multiple jobs including being a rent-a-cop, but no one would take him once they ran a background check on him. Instead, he went back to his old job of being a farm hand at a cattle ranch he once worked at as a teenager. He got the job, but things were far different there since he'd left years before.
The ranch's owner, once a strong and active man, was now confined to a wheelchair, sick and incapable of doing much of anything other than drooling on himself. The current cowhand manager, Bret Savage, was a guy Carl knew back in high school who was not only a bully, but always had some type of scheme going on to get money or favors from other classmates and underclassmen. As the lead cowhand, Savage let Carl know the only reason he had a job with them was due to the 'old man', otherwise they'd have kicked Carl's "special powered" ass across the property with their shotguns.
Over the next few weeks, Carl, using his training from the Texas Rangers, quickly realized that Bret was running an extortion ring and used the cattle ranch and its resources as his base of operations, including an illegal gun storage bin under the barn. After collecting enough evidence to get Savage and his minions arrested, he went to his old Texas Rangers unit, only to be turned away by those he once considered his closest friends and comrades. Carl tried to talk to other local police officers and even a lawyer, again, only to be turned away. When Carl returned to the ranch, Savage and his men assaulted Carl in the barn, telling Carl he knew what he was up to and that Carl was about to be killed and dumped in a pond, followed by the cattle ranch's owner.
Since Carl didn't have any other powers or strengths, he was tied up and immobilized by Savage's crew, but not before he got in some powerful hits. Savage broke out a diamond bit industrial drill and was about to drill it into Carl's heart when Savage was hit in the back by a shotgun blast. The blast came from the cattle ranch's owner, who'd wheeled himself out to the barn and had commenced shooting at Savage and his crew. Savage only took a hit to the shoulder, but he and his crew ducked for cover and started drilling bullet holes in the old man, leaving over 20 rounds in the old man's body. That's when Carl was finally able to take action.
Using his large pocket knife he used to use as a teenage cowhand, he cut the ropes that were binding him and, using his Texas Ranger Special Response Team training, took out all eight of Savage's crew, leaving Savage and Carl to fight it out, mano-a-mano. In a fistfight that lasted several minutes, Savage finally broke from the fisticuffs and grabbed a hay bale pitchfork and unsuccessfully tried stabbing Carl in the face with it. Carl instead took the pitchfork and skewered Savage in the neck, leaving Savage dying. The police showed up after reports of gunfire were reported and discovered the bodies and a still living Bret Savage. The ambulance took Savage to the hospital, where he was treated for his neck injuries. Savage survived, however, Savage's vocal cords were destroyed as a result of the pitchfork, leaving Savage (wait for it...) speechless. Carl was, however, hauled away for due to the others in Savage's crew he'd killed and was locked up in jail as the police processed the ranch trying to determine what had happened. Thanks to the potential of other corrupt officials in the local police, Carl knew he was never going to get the justice he was due.
Over the next few months, the media got hold of the story and started castrating Carl's image, calling him a mass murderer and a super-powered killer. Supposed 'evidence' that was said to have been collected at the crime scene pointed to Carl gunning down the wheelchair-bound ranch owner in cold blood. The Houston mayor denounced the city proclamation of "Carl Brooksfield" Day, calling Carl a 'sick and evil man'. While in jail, no one visited him, not even his family. Never had Carl felt more alone than he did those months in the jail cell waiting for them to prosecute him for the multiple murders.
Eventually, the case was taken to trial. Since no one wanted to defend him, he received a spineless lawyer appointed by the state to represent him. The mousy, nervous lawyer proved his incompetence on the first day of the trial by not objecting to several blatant lies produced by his accusers. The next day at the start of the 2nd day of the trial, believing he was assuredly going to be convicted, a tall lean man barged into the courtroom, followed by federal agents and the Texas District Attorney calling for an end to the trial on the basis of corruption and illegal process. The judge, the prosecution's lawyers and several other policemen and trial experts were hauled away in handcuffs before the live TV cameras. The tall, lean man was none other than the famous Lawrence X. Edwards, attorney at law from the Massachusetts law offices of Lexington Legal, otherwise known at the hero, Lexington of the Yankee Minutemen super-group from New England. Edwards offered his legal services to Carl, who readily and quickly accepted them.
Edwards had seen the media frenzy over Carl's trial and started investigating the prosecutors and the court when he saw that several legal per-trial decisions obviously pointed to a corrupt legal operation. After further investigation (and a little field work for Edwards in Texas), he had enough proof to convict those he'd had arrested that day for conspiracy and corruption, as well as implementing a hate crime against Carl and other processed super-powered people that wound up in the same courtroom.
In the end, Carl was cleared of all charges, with the courtroom conspirators each given 25 years of prison for their actions. Carl never again saw his family and has ignored all calls and letters from them since.
With no where to go and no money, Carl talked with Edwards about maybe joining up with the Yankee Minutemen as a means of repaying him for his heroic legal victory, but instead, Edwards introduced Carl to a man code-named as Unitas who was putting together a new super-group called the "American Patrol". Carl agreed and joined the American Patrol that same day.
Today, as the new Texas hero only known as the "Lone Star Ranger", Carl fights along side his super-powered compatriots against the big-picture dangers in the world, all the while, using his guns and near-impenetrable skin to help others who were being wronged just as he once was.Currently, Carl resides in the American Patrol's Houston, Texas headquarters until he can find his own place.
On a side note, the Houston Mayor, as a result of his political connection with the judge involved in Carl's conspiracy trial, was voted out of office on a vote of 'no confidence' from the city council. Although "Carl Brooksfield" Day was never reinstated, in its place, the new Houston mayor has instead proclaimed a "Lone Star Ranger" Day. In addition to that, Bret Savage escaped jail (hours after Edwards convicted Carl's judge of conspiracy) and has not been seen since.
Charise "Silver" Clairborne
Born into wealth in Anaheim, California, Charise quickly learned she was 'special' as a preteen. She was able to think of places she wanted to go and would create an illusion of that place in front of herself. She entrusted her secret power with a few friends who quickly deemed her a 'freak' and dropped her as a friend.
Not long after that, Charise's parents, while on a business trip, died in a private plane crash in the Pacific Ocean. Their bodies were never found, however, several parts of their plane were found floating in the ocean months later. Conspiracy theorists claimed the couple were working for GUARD in their spare time, but no proof was ever provided to back this claim up.
Charise instead inherited her parents' millions and could have lived a comfortable life, but it wasn't in her blood. She was always out trying to save the world through environmental groups, charity organizations and protests. By her 15th birthday, she'd also discovered how to use all of her new powers and had been practicing with them with the help of an old retired British superhero she'd hired on, Lady London. As a result, Charise quickly became highly adept in her powers and as such enjoyed using them. With Lady London telling Charise she was too young to use her powers as a superhero, Charise came up with an alternative idea of her own - be a female illusionist in the entertainment industry.
In less than a year under the stage name "Silver", she gained incredible notoriety as one of the first teenage illusionist in the United States. Her shows were routinely sold out with thousands of adoring teen fans, mostly young men. She eventually had to start booking the shows in Las Vegas in order to cover the show demands. She sold her family's estate in Anaheim and moved to a new luxurious estate outside of Las Vegas, where she did two shows a night, six days a week. During this time she was having the time of her life until one early morning encounter at her new home.
In the company of her current boyfriend that week, Charise was awakened by a shadowy figure. The boyfriend had already been knocked out with a drug from a needle. The shadowy figure turned out to be Chraise's long lost - and dead- mother.
After settling down, Charise was told that her parents had to disappear and be considered dead after their identities while working for their employer were compromised. Charise's mom swore she wanted to tell Charise that her parents were alive, but they'd been under surveillance for years and this was the first time she was able to get close enough to tell her. Her mother said she and her father worked for the Mystiguard division of GUARD and that the division had recently been decimated by an evil mystical group called Arkaenus. With tears and hugs, Charise's mother mentioned that Charise's father had died months before by Arkaenus.
Just as Charise was about to ask the million questions running through her head, several shadowy figures burst through her bedroom's windows. Charise's mom broke out a magical wand and started using it to shoot arcane bolts and flinging furniture at the attackers. Charise herself grabbed her shades, threw her mom the boyfriend's shades and told her to don them immediately. Once she saw her mom with the shades on, Charise let loose her flash power, blinding all the attackers. With that Charise used her fighting training from Lady London and knocked out the attackers as did her mother, but with her mother using her wand to smash the attackers into the walls and furniture until they were unconscious. Both women grabbed up Charise's boyfriend, threw him in a hall closet and drove away in Charise's new high speed Lamborghini.
During the drive, Charise's mother explained the Arkaenus cult had been after Charise's parents because of their knowledge of the location of a powerful mystical artifact that would massively empower Arkeanus' followers with amplified magical abilities. As was witnessed, Arkaenus wanted it bad enough to kill for it. Charise's mom told her daughter to drive back to Anaheim to their old estate, There, she needed to retrieve the artifact that had been hidden there the whole time, once and for all. After driving across the desert for hours, they arrived at their old estate in Anaheim, which was still 'sale pending' with the Realtor. There, Charise's mom opened secret passages and doors Charise never knew existed, all leading to an underground arcane vault. There, several remaining arcane artifacts, including the one Arkaenus wanted, were bagged up. Exiting the house, the mother and daughter were confronted by an army of Arkeanus mage warriors standing across the driveway.
Twenty minutes later, Charise was the only one left standing. Charise cradled the dying body of her mother, completely surrounded by the defeated unconscious or magically decomposing dead bodies of over 40 Arkaneus mage warriors. After saying their parting words to each other, Charise's mom told Charise to hide the contents of the bag with the only other person she trusts; a man codenamed as Unitas. Charise's mom died in her arms moments later. GUARD eventually showed up and took care of the cleanup, especially Charise's mom. The Anaheim estate was also completely destroyed in the battle.
After flying for an hour, Charise and the GUARD clean up crew arrived at a GUARD facility in upper state Nevada called "Ground Zero". Charise mentioned her mom's request about the artifact to the lead GUARD director there and requested GUARD to help her contact Unitas. Although GUARD kindly asked to take care of the artifacts themselves through Mystigaurd, Charise declined their offer. Instead, GUARD supported Charise's request and brought Unitas to the base the next day for the two to meet. After agreeing to take custody and hide the artifact, Charise and Unitas were flown to Topeka, Kansas where at that time Unitas was operating from. After landing the GUARD transport at the local airport, Charise, Unitas and several GUARD security troops were attacked by another wave of Arkaenus mage warriors on the runway. In the end, four GUARD troops died, but all the Arkaenus warriors were defeated.
Knowing his home was now compromised, Unitas, Charise and the remaining GUARD troops took off again, this time to San Francisco where they met with another mage warrior from the Protectors super-group called Vantage. There, they finally turned over the artifacts for temporary safe keeping with Vantage, knowing they could trust him to protect and hide them well. No soon than they returned to Los Vegas, they were assaulted once again by Arkaenus. Rather than fight, Charise told the lead mage to take her to their leader and she'd tell them about the artifact they were looking for.
After hours of blindfolded travel in the back of a van, Charise and Unitas arrived at a secretive Arkaenus location with over 200 mage warriors present. The leader of the mage warriors demanded Charise hand over the artifact only for Charise to mention that the artifact had been dumped into the Pacific Ocean and if they wanted it, they'd have to fight the terrorist Pacific Warlords for it. Unhappy with Charise's response, the lead mage warrior prompted his group to attack Charise and Unitas, but at the last second, stopped the attack and began laughing. He was impressed with Charise's actions and told her she had the 'heart of a warrior'. With that, they allowed Unitas to teleport Charise and himself out of their secretive lair but ordered to never return again under penalty of death. Unitas did so and both appeared back at the beginning of the entire story's caper - Charise's Las Vegas estate's master bedroom.
Over a cup of coffee and donuts, Unitas asked Charise if she wanted to help him with another arcane mission he'd been having problems 'solving'. Enthusiastically, Charise agreed, but only after she paid her last respects to her parents (which Unitas said he'd join her in doing). Days later, she became one of the team that eventually became the American Patrol.
Today, Charise juggles her acts in Las Vegas (now only three shows a week to still sold out crowds at astronomical ticket prices!), her 'boy-toy' of the week, spending her money on charities, going to powerful celebrity parties and being a public hero with American Patrol, all under her stage name of "Silver". She visits her mom and dad's graves monthly still and has even helped out GUARD's Mystiguard Division on a few occasions. Image what happens when she turns 18 this year!POWERS/CAPABILITIES