Michael "Brooklyn" Monroe
Michael Monroe AKA "Brooklyn Brawler", a professional heavyweight boxing champion (from Brooklyn, New York, of course), at the height of his career, was thrust into the seedy underworld of fixed fights when his manager signed him up for the Global Heavyweight Boxing Federation (GHBF) Tournament; a situation that destroyed his burgeoning life and career, yet catapulted him into the ranks of true heroism.
Several years ago, Monroe slowly had become a household name in the boxing world, with an undefeated record for five years in a row. He won national titles and accolades garnering him millions of dollars and luxuries. Monroe's parents attended every match he was in, rooting for him as any proud parent would. Monroe was even engaged to his high school sweetheart, Tanya Weston, an up-and-coming supermodel. Monroe was living the life of a sports champion.
Recently, Monroe's manager wanted to 'shake things up a bit' and sign Monroe onto to the relatively new GHBF. He signed for over $10 million dollar, with a $50 million bonus if he became champion that year. Monroe trained harder than he'd ever had before. This first dozen matches, Monroe easily knocked out his opponent within two rounds. That's when things started shifting.
In one match in Singapore, he noticed he was feeling woozy during the match. It took 9 rounds before he was able to land a lucky knockout blow to his opponent; an opponent that Monroe would've easily defeated in two rounds. After the match, he'd discovered his water had been drugged. It took his 3 days to recover from its results. In another match in Bangkok, the referee continued to make horrendously bad calls against Monroe. Even the crowd knew the referee had been 'bought off'. Angered, Monroe went to talk with the GHBF General Director, Jhon Zihm Lo, about the illegal actions occurring to him. Zihm Lo dictated to Monroe that he could 'forfeit' his entire contract, paying back all of his money, especially the signing bonus of $10 million...at a 20% accrued interest. Monroe was in complete disbelief at the frame-job the GHBF was doing to him. Instead, he told them to 'do your worst'; he'd win the remaining five matches and become the GHBF Champion, forcing them to have to pay him the $50 million. What Monroe didn't know was that the GHBF was a front for a complex sports gambling ring run by the notorious Golden Dragons gang.The worst days were yet to come for Monroe.
In the next two matches, Monroe was pitted against opponents that were super-powered with a mutagen drug; a drug that tripled Monroe's opponents' strength. Monroe fought in both matches, both resulting in bloody, painful wins for Monroe. In each fight, he gave everything he had, knocking out his opponent each time just before the final bell rang. Infuriated, Zhim Lo had some of his Golden Dragon thugs threaten Monroe's parents' lives after the last match. Monroe instead beat the thugs within an inch of their lives. He then called his friends in the United States and informed them of the situation. They immediately flew to Monroe's location and enacted as bodyguards for him and his parents. Monroe was not going to back down from this fight.
Monroe then confronted Zhim Lo about what was happening. Zhim Lo acted surprised, mentioning that there were obviously 'forces at work' to see him fail. He mentioned that anyone who'd bet against him in the casinos might want to exact a revenge on him for his wins. Zhim Lo continued to maintain his innocence over the whole matter, however, Monroe wasn't buying it. Monroe threatened that if one more 'incident' happened to him, his manager or his family, he'd inform the authorities and shut down the GHBF forever. In a direct challenge, Monroe waked up to Zhim Lo, staring him down, stating that he'd 'personally' hospitalize anyone that prevents him from boxing in this tournament fair and square.
Zhim Lo allowed Monroe his 'fair and square' fights, however, he started bringing in 'ringers' for Monroe to fight. Monroe barely beat them, but each time...he beat them. Zhim Lo was furious. So was his 'business acquaintance', the leader of the Golden Dragons. Zhim Lo was told by the Golden Dragon's leader to ensure that Monroe would never win in the companionship finale. Monroe was to fight one of the Golden Dragon's most powerhouse enforcers - Yao "Golden Fist" Xiao, the East's most powerful boxer...and a noted killer of boxing opponents.
Although Xiao was just ounces inside the maximum weight requirements for the fight, he was allowed to enter the championship round due to Monroe's other several contenders dying in a freak airline accident days before.
As the two beat each other senseless for 15 rounds in Shanghai, China, Monroe, who'd never been knocked down in his career, had been knocked down 10 times throughout the match. With blood flowing from his eyes and ears, a broken nose, a dislocated jaw, five broken ribs, and three broken fingers, Monroe continued to give everything he had. The crowds and audiences around the world were watching the fight, cheering for Monroe like never before. Xiao had tried every tactic to take Monroe's head off, but Monroe was smart; he'd watched recorded TV and footage of Xioa's previous fights. Monroe KNEW exactly when Xiao would try to deal a death blow; the trick was to make sure he could stay alive in the process. As the final seconds counted down, he knew he had to do a KO (Knock-Out) to win. Feigning weakness, Monroe allowed Xiao another chance to perform his 'killing' move; that gave Monroe the opening he needed. With every ounce of energy left in his body, he drove an upper cut under Xiao's jaw, lifting Xiao's massive frame right off the mat. Both boxers fell to the mat. As the countdowns closed down, both boxers struggled to stand. Monroe rose first; Xiao didn't. Monroe won within seconds of the final bell. Although Monroe was now the championship boxer of the GHBF (in other words, the world), he still had to face the consequences of his win.
With the help of his friends/bodyguard, Monroe, his manager and his parents shot to the airport where his chartered private jet (which he'd used since the first threat on his life) was waiting. Monroe was already in bad shape, however, he knew sticking around in Shanghai any longer would invite any type of attack. As their plane leveled off with its course set for Japan, where he'd arranged for a trusted doctor to meet and treat him upon alighting in Japan, the flight hostess (who'd been with the flight crew since their first flight), came from the cockpit bearing two golden Chinese swords. Monroe's friends/bodyguards immediately sprang to their feet to stop her, but each one was cut down...including Monroe's manager. Monroe, in fear for his parent's safety pleaded with the sword-wielding assassin to stop. With his arms outstretched motioning to stop, she shoved her swords straight through his hands, wrists and forearms in one swift motion, leaving Monroe screaming in agony with his now useless hands. "THAT is what you get for your insolence. Now, you will face the consequences of your actions", spoke the assassin as she lunged forward to chop his parent's heads off from their seated position on each side of the plane. Monroe instead lurched up, smashing the assassin into the plane's ceiling, tossing her over his shoulder into the back of the plane before the restroom door. As the assassin rose to her feat, Monroe, in a rage, head smashed her through the restroom door, causing her to drop her swords. He commenced beating her with his elbows, knees, forehead...even the bloodied mess that were once his hands. He pounded her relentlessly until she stopped resisting. The assassin was now unceremoniously jammed into the airplane's restroom with its door crumpled all around her.
Monroe, nearly ready to pass out, stood up, raggedly back-stepping to check on his shocked parents; they were OK, but scared out of their wits. As the assassin painfully and unsuccessfully tried to pull herself out of the tangled restroom and door, Monroe looked down at the assassin's gleaming gold Chinese swords lying kilter across one of the seats and the floor. He stomped down on the swords breaking each into pieces. The assassin screamed as if she herself had just been dealt another mortal blow. Monroe told her, "I swore...the next person to mess...with me...or my family would pay". "You go tell whoever you work for..it's over. I won. You're ALL going to jail, you sons of bitches - all except you. You're going to learn how to fly." He then spied the parachute the assassin had set near the hatch. He ripped her from the tangled debris and hog-tied her with one of his boxing robe's cloth belts. He then put the parachute on her, opened the hatch, picked her up and drew her face to his and said "If I ever see you again, it'll be your funeral. Now go tell you 'master' what I told you. Happy landings." She swore at him as he threw her out the hatch, pulling the chutes ripcord as she bounced off the planes' hull. Her parachute opened and she slowly descended down towards the Chinese coast. Monroe, at that point, passed out.
His father was an ex-US Air Force loadmaster and his mother was a registered nurse. His father grabbed Monroe and pulled him into the aisle, then closed the hatch. His mother started tending to her son's wounds, using the on-board 1st Aid kit. She'd checked the others that had been cut down earlier; they were all dead. Monroe's father found the pilot dead, but the plane was in auto-pilot. A quick 'Mayday' call later, and the father informed the nearest Japanese tower all that transpired aboard. Although the father had never flown a jet before, he'd piloted a Cessna single-engined prop-job back as a teenager when he was in Civil Air Patrol. It would be a challenge, but at least he had a clue what to do.
With help from the Japanese tower, Monroe's father was able to land the plane safely. Monroe's mother got her son stable,but he was in shock and had lost a lot of blood. As soon as the plane came to a stop on the runway, police and medics boarded the plane. Monroe was taken to Tokyo General where he laid unconscious for over a week. The damage to his hands meant he'd never box again; they had to be amputated. When Monroe finally awoke, his parents were there to console him.
The news of what happened to Monroe hit the airwaves like wildfire. The GHBF was immediately shutdown and placed under criminal investigation. Zhim Lo was never found, but all of his co-workers and staff were found dead, stabbed through their hearts with swords. The American Boxing Organization (ABO) started a charity drive to help Monroe. The doctors believed they could make prosthetic hands for Monroe so he could lead a normal life. Monroe had other ideas.
Monroe spoke to the media; "I need hands that I can use to stop people like the criminals I helped stop. I need hands that can physically stop this from happening to anyone again...ever. I swear to you, help me get the hands I need to help others and I'll dedicate the rest of my life to do so."
With those words and several 'generous large multimillion dollar donations to his charity (including millions more from fans and fellow athletes), a decision was made to not give Monroe prosthetic hands, but bionic hands. They'd be mechanical, but they'd be neurologically controlled. With therapy, he'd be able to use them like real hands. Monroe was appreciative, but still wanted more. That's when, after a closed door meeting with a crusty, white haired old man, he was able to get a special team create and attach powerful forearm gauntlets that would give him incredible strength. His other injuries were treated as well, along with a composite spinal support system, stronger than steel, but as flexible as any athlete's spine.
When Munroe finally exited the hospital one year later, he was financially broke, but physically, he was a new man. He was now the Brooklyn Brawler. With his new arms, he went out every night fighting crooks and thugs, taking down illegal gambling rings and helping others in need. Eventually, his actions drew dire comments from community leaders, making them 'ban' him and his vigilante ways from the local towns and communities.
Eventually, Brawler made his way to San Francisco. There, he engaged dozens of criminals organizations in Oakland until one day he heard on the radio a cry for help from a new hero known as Ascender. Within a couple days, Brawler and several other heroes joined forces with Ascender to stop several major criminal organizations in the Bay area.
Now lauded as a hero, Brooklyn Brawler joined Ascender's team called "The Protectors" and since then has never looked back at what happened to him, nor has he turned away helping those in need.
On a related note, rumors arose that the assassin on Monroe's plane was actually the granddaughter of the mysterious leader of the Golden Dragons crime gang. The swords Munroe broke was hereditary swords, hundreds of years old. His breaking of those swords is said to have started an unending feud between the Golden Dragon's family and Monroe's...one that is said can never end until every person in one's family is dead by the hands of the other. A blood feud has now been started. As for the granddaughter assassin...she's alive, but she can NEVER return home until Monroe is dead by her hands...and hers alone.
Todd Thatcher was a party animal of a college student (and still is) at the University of California, San Francisco, when a simple costume party changed his life...and body.
Majoring in Behavioral Science, specifically in Cognitive Science, Todd was renown as the 'campus partymeister', always setting up themed parties at the different dorms, fraternities and sororities - at that was just his freshman year.
Although obsessed with having a good time, he did well with his studies. A bright, quick learner, he rarely studies and still got "A"s on his work.
Recently, Todd was preparing for a Halloween-themed costume party for the Kappa Si fraternity. 'Horror, deviltry and spooky' was the theme. Todd got a 'cool' yet cheap full body 'devil' costume, but went shopping for some accoutrements. He knew of an old occult shop down the road called "Occult and More". When he arrived later that night, the store was dark and empty. Calling out to see if anyone was there, an old man came around the corner with an old oak box. After telling the old man he was looking for something to accent his 'costume' for his party, the old man nervously said to take what was in the box...free of charge. Quizzically, Todd opened the box to see shiny gold wristbands. He wasn't about to question the transaction, but asked if the old man wanted them back after the party, to which the old man said, "they are your legacy now. Once yours, they will remain yours until your death", The old man then nervously rushed Todd out of the shop with a parting comment of "do good with them; not evil". The door closed and the 'closed' sign was swiftly placed in the window. As Todd started walking away, he thought he saw several light flashes over his shoulder coming from the occult shop, but thought it was just headlights from cars passing by.
When he got back to his dorm, he tossed on his devil costume, using red makeup to touch up areas. He got a toy pirate-like sword and stuck it in his belt. He then took the wristbands he got at the occult shop and snapped them on.
That's when Todd dropped to his knees in pain.
His skin started to burn, his mind was awash in thousands of images of scenes from what seemed like the last 500 years of life in Europe, Britain and Canada, with the most recent images (the last 50 years) in the United States. These images flooded his mind in less than 10 seconds. His body started changing. The devil's horn headband dissolved into actual devil horns, his clip-on 'devil's tail' melded between his buttocks and lower spine. his skin became as red as a devil's. When Todd looked in the mirror, he screamed and passed out.
An hour later, he was awoken by his 'party buddies' and dragged to the Halloween party. Barely able to process anything around him, with his mind filled with foreign images, he seemed like he was drunk or wasted on drugs, which he wasn't. His 'friends' plopped him down in a chair in a row of 'costume contest' contestants; before Todd realized what was going on, strange men in green and gold robes (Arkaenus) showed up on the scene, attacking Todd. Todd instinctively tried to get away. In doing so, his new 'wristbands' created a 'thermal wave' that catapulted him up to the fraternity's 2nd floor balcony. The green and gold robed men started shoot energy bolts form their hands at Todd, who easily dodged, using his new prehensile devil's tail (which shocked him to the core) to swing from area to area. Todd landed in front of the robed men and holding out his hands to tell them to stop, he shot a flamethrower-like blast of fire at the two robed men. The robed men screamed for a second and then dropped into dust, with their robes falling onto the ground amidst the ash. The party-goers cheered thinking this was all part of the party. Todd, shocked at all that happened, fainted.
When Todd awoke this time, it was very early in the morning. He was propped up in a chair with a large "1st place" ribbon hanging around his neck, along with a keg of beer and what looked to be several bags of Halloween candy, complete with slips of paper from women at the party saying 'call me', with their cell numbers and/or Facebook names on them. Completely confused what had happened to him or at the party, he awoke his 'party friends', all of whom explained what transpired that night.
When Todd tried to remove the wristbands, he discovered they'd grafted to his skin and the latch wouldn't undo itself. Irritated and mystified over everything, he went to the occult shop, still looking like a devil, but he put on some pants, shirt and shoes. When he got to the occult shop, it had been burned to the ground. Firefighters and police seemed to be investigating the scene. He overheard the Fire Chief mention when the fire was believed to have started; it was minutes after Todd had left the store. Todd walked slowly back to his dorm room, taking in all that occurred.
On the way to the campus, he saw a young child run out into the street after a balloon; the parent was oblivious; only Todd saw the truck heading for the kid. He shot out into the street pushing the kid out of the way, but Todd was a second from being hit. As he tried to dodge away, he instead leaped over the truck and landed like an Olympic gymnast from a dismount. The parent and child was OK and thanked Todd for what he'd done, although the parent was a tad 'unnerved' by his devil-like looks.
Todd walked around to the back of an old building off of K street hoping to sort out the strange things that were going on; his body was red skinned, with a devil's tail, and horns on the top of his head; the wristbands shot fire, and he was in the best shape he'd EVER been in. He also believed his 'bracers' as he now called them, had used some type of thermal updraft to help propel him to his incredible leaps and bounds. When he tried these things behind the abandoned building, he not only was able to recreate them, but was also able to create a 'fire sword' shaped much like the toy one he had with his costume. The 'bracers' had to be magical. They transformed him, melding his costume to his being and body. The problem was, the 'bracers' weren't coming off. That's when he remembered what the old man at the Occult shop had said, "once yours, they will remain yours until your death". He also remembered the old man's parting comment of "do good with them; not evil".
Blessing or curse, he was now stuck with the bracers and his new looks and powers.
Over the weekend, he accepted his new looks and braced himself for what might be a problem with his schoolmates, his parents, family and girlfriend.
Over the next few weeks, he realized how much 'true diversity' meant at UCSF; 1/2 the student body accepted him, the other 1/2 thought he was wearing body paint and glued-on props for 'attention'. His parents, two gay men, accepted his new looks, but were a bit taken aback by the devil-like representation it was sure to engender. His girlfriend thought it was 'radical'. On a date later that week, he also discovered that 'other' parts of his body were transformed...for the better. It wasn't long before word got out about Todd's 'body part', as well as about his prehensile tail, that women soon were all over Todd. He became a campus icon, 'bucking the system' and 'showing that the university is so diverse, they'll even let him be a devil'.
The classes continued, the women accosted him, the parties got even bigger and better, and the media soon brought Todd's new 'look' to the national news. Many painted Todd as an 'attention seeker', others chided him for 'promoting the devil and evil'. Nonetheless, he started getting polarizing Tweets and Facebook social media hits in the millions. overwhelmed with the attention, he did what he always did best - plan the next party. That's when certain robed figures decided to attack him again.
Trying to 'fit in' with his new looks, Todd set up a mid-term party. During the party, once again the green and gold hooded and robed figures arrived. This time, they tossed Todd into some form of green energy trap that immobilized him. Demanding what they 'beef' was with him, they stated the 'Bands of C'thulu' were ancient magical artifacts that they'd been tasked to recover. When asked what they'd use the bands for, they smiled and said "power". At that point, two of his 'party friends', thinking this was all part of an act, decided to get in on it. Instead they were knocked back with spells from the robed ones. The crowd, again thinking this was an 'act', started chanting "Devil-Man! Devil-Man!"; this distracted the robed figures enough that the 'trap' dissolved, freeing Todd. Todd then drew his new 'fire sword' out of mid air and attacked the robed figures, one after the other. Each time his sword's flame hit one of the robed figures, they turned to ash. Several moments later, 'Devil-Man' stood victorious over the ash-heaps that were once the robed aggressors - all to a cheering party crowd.
Not knowing how to process this, Todd went to the office of one of the university's professors; Dr. Camen Catharo, a noted parapsychologist. After a few sessions with the professor, Todd discovered he was indeed wielding the 'bands of C'thulu', an ancient magical artifact that was said to be empowered by C'thulu, a demon. The bands were designed to change its wearer to 'be the ultimate warrior with what he had/wore at the time the bands were applied'. It also noted that over the last seven centuries, the bands had been passed to evil...and good men of the cloth. They were not inherently evil, but the bands powers could easily be misconstrued to be evil. It also mentioned that death was the only way the bands would unhinge from the wearer.
Overwhelmed with the information, the professor mentioned that these 'powers' might be used for good, and mentioned about a TV broadcast he'd seen earlier in the day of a local hero known as "Ascender' pleading for help to stop multiple villains and evil from hurting innocents in and around the bay area. Within a couple of days later, Todd saw a pitched battle being broadcast live of Ascender fighting dozens of villains. He took off to the location, and there, along with several other heroes., helped Ascender defeat his attackers.
Days later, Todd was approached, and asked to join Ascender's new team, the "Protectors". Todd agreed.
And thus, Todd became Devil-Man. College student. Demonic-looking diversity leader. Magically enhanced warrior. Superhero. Member of the latest super-group, the Protectors. Hot single male. Party boy. All these titles, and so much time to live up to them...
Doctor David Hudson, a bio-geneticist with the "Geneticon Corporation", created a new serum that would potentially crystallize exposed blood (say, from a gunshot wound) and cauterize it, sealing and healing the wound at the same time. The only problem was that it required a complex use of a laser, a ruby, a diamond and the serum to make this happen. Since it was obviously not made portable at this point, it was still a long ways from being used in hospitals and the field (plus the cost of lasers, rubies and diamonds would add up fast).
As Doctor Hudson was working on the refinement of the process, as well as finding a way to make it more portable, the villainous crime organization known as "Crimewave", struck.
In his Los Angeles labs, Doctor Hudson was in the middle of testing the processes on rats when Crimewave attacked his lab. Shooting three of his assistants dead with energy rifles, the leader, Crimemaster, demanded Doctor Hudson to hand over the serum and equipment or he'd kill another two lab assistants Crimewave had in a headlock. Doctor Hudson knew that if this serum hit the black market, which Crimewave was notorious for, super-villains would use this to do more deadly villainy. Knowing it could not fall into Crimewave's hands, but wanting to save the other two assistants, he said he'd hand it over, but only after he 'safely' shutdown the existing experiment. As he was to shut down the device, he instead rotated the laser at the one thug holding the hostage; the last chopped the thug's rifle in two and cut through his body armor at the shoulder; panic ensued, yet the two assistants were able to run away to safety, leaving the Doc time to grab the ruby, diamond and serum and put them in his front chest pocket of his lab coat and run. Crimewave gave chase.
Zigzagging through the hallways, Doc Hudson raced towards an emergency stairwell exit from his 10th floor lab, only to be shot by one of the troops with their energy rifle. The impact of the shot sent Hudson crashing through the adjacent exterior plate glass window, sending him falling from the 10th floor. The shot the thug did to Hudson hit Hudson in the lab coat pocket; the same pocket with the diamond, ruby and serum. The energy shot refracted through the diamond, ruby and serum, causing each of them to explode over the now open lung wound of the doctor, an open 'sucking' wound that drew in ALL of the diamond and ruby fragments, as well as the serum, into his body on what should have been his last normal breath.
The Doctor fell to the company's duck pond below in a resounding splash. Crimemaster, angered at the thugs' death shot to the doctor, shot his own thug in the head, dead on the spot. The rest of Crimewave raced down the stairs to the duck pond to retrieve Doctor Hudson's body and the three items Hudson had pocketed. When they got to the pond, Doctor Hudson arose from the pond with red crystallized skin emanating all across his chest, head and arms. The wound was closed and the doctor had instead transformed. The other thugs, too scared to shoot the Doctor again for fear of Crimemaster's earlier reprisal, tried to stop the doctor physically. The doctor tossed the thugs dozens of yards from his body effortlessly. Crimemaster began shooting the Doctor with his own energy handgun, but instead, the energy bounced off of the Doc's new skin. Realizing what was happening, the Doc made a run for it. Just as Crimemaster and his thugs were to give chase, the police showed up. Crimemaster, knowing his robbery and murders would result in SWAT and superheroes at any moment, ran the opposite direction to his camouflaged jet, taking off and allowing himself to fight another day; a day that he'd eventually get Doc Hudson. Doctor Hudson, himself, kept running for hours without stopping.
When Doctor Hudson finally did stopped, he found himself inside an old abandoned Boeing Aircraft Industries building. He stopped freaking out about what had happened, and instead started assessing what had happened to him.
He determined the energy rifle he was shot with acted much like the laser at the lab, but far more powerful, and infused the serum, diamond fragments and ruby fragments into his gaping chest wound, however, thanks to the mix of these items in his lungs, his body took on the traits of the two minerals and the serum. It had spread like wildfire to everywhere above his belt line, but only turned his lower body and face to a crystalline red coating, rather than covered in this new organic material he'd just created. Whimsically, he called this new bio-material covering his body as "Biodimantium". He pounded his new fists on a large metal saw, breaking the saw. He jumped off the top of the construction hangar, damaging the pavement, but not himself. He blinded himself with high intensity lamps left over in a storeroom, with no damage to his eyes. His insides and outsides were now a type of 'bio-armor', one that replenished in damage, which would require just short of a 500 lb. bomb to pierce at this rate.
Unsure what to do, he made his way to a police station. There, he tried to inform the lieutenant there what had happened. Unable to give DNA samples or fingerprints, the police tried to collaborate his story; that's when Crimewave assaulted the police station in force. As policemen were being shot and killed all around him, troops with shoulder-fired missiles started blasting the Doc and the police station. After a minute of blinding explosions and blasts, the police station was leveled. As the smoke cleared, a huge chunk of the fallen ceiling was tossed into the air, with Doc standing over the only surviving four policemen in the building. Each of the policemen were badly wounded. Doc leaped out of the debris, landing nearly 30 yards away and in from of the shoulder-mounted missile assault team and started ripping the missile launchers off their suits, crushing the weapons and pounding the troops. When all was done, 35 thugs from Crimemaster lay unconscious, but at the cost of 15 policemen. The four remaining cops lived to tell the tale.
Minutes after the assault, Doc knew he'd do nothing but endanger others around him until Crimewave got what they wanted. They'd escalate their attacks until it was no longer cost-worthy. That's when he decided to go on the offensive. Attack Crimewave. Destroy them before they could do more damage to others around him.
Intimidating several street 'toughs', he found on e of Crimemaster's bases of operations out of an old abandoned US Army depot miles to the south of Los Angeles. He walked the whole way there. As he did, the police, media and casual observers started waling with him. The police presence got larger and larger, until it was the size of a small army. Helicopters buzzing overhead, SWAT teams, demolition teams, armored vehicles, you name it...the LAPD and it's neighboring police districts converged on the location Doc walked to. There, he asked the police to wait. He intended to go in and stop them, preventing the chance for any more police to be hurt. They reluctantly agreed. That's when Doc started his assault on Crimewave's LA base of operations.
As he advanced, he was blasted with machine gun fire, missiles, mortars...even artillery. Energy weapon blasts shot through the air. Nothing hurt him. The worst that happened is the ground underneath him would be blasted away, but then he'd get back up and keep advancing. Once he got close, he started picking up rocks, debris, signposts, whatever he could get his hands on, and used those as weapons to beat and knock out the Crimewave thugs. After 10 minutes of intense fire, the sounds of battle dwindled as the Doc took the fight inside an underground bunker. There, Crimemaster had set up hundreds of pounds of TNT and blew the bunker, sending the Doc flying through the bunker's cement roof and 1/4 mile into the air. Do c landed with a resounded thump. He then got up, checked himself for injuries (none) and went to the next building. He did this until he got every single Crimewave thug. In the end, over 300 Crimewave thugs were taken down, however, Crimemaster, somehow, got away. The Doc was declared a hero, with the media now dubbing him "Doc Diamond".
Doc went back to the lab to see if there was anything he could do to research a cure for what happened to him. As it stood, the 'biodimantium', seemed to be spreading the more his new skin took damage. He now had large crystals emanating from his shoulders and back as a result of the damage he amassed during the Crimewave assault he'd done earlier. When he got to the lab the next day, Crimemaster was waiting inside.
He wanted to talk.
Crimemaster said he was a respectable criminal, but never had he been hurt as bad as what "Doc Diamond" had done to him and his business. "Thus," Crimemaster said, "...an eye for an eye". Crimemaster rotated a monitor around, allowing the Doc to see his parents and girlfriend wrapped in chemical weapons packages with a remote detonator. Crimemaster showed Doc the remote he had. "One press of this button and they die a painful death". Doc asked what Crimemaster wanted; his response - "you." With that, Doc relented, demanding that his family and girlfriend be freed. Crimemaster stated that only after the Doc helped to make the same 'biodimantium' that he was composed of would they, and he, be let go.
Knowing Crimemaster probably would kill his family anyway, he went with Crimemaster another secretive Crimewave base located in the Mojave desert. An old rocket engine testing area with underground bunkers. He'd set up the lab as best he could, including diamonds and rubies and a laser. He demanded that the Doc make the serum and create the same results that turned him into what the Doc was now.
Instead, the Doc carefully and secretly crafted an expanding rubbery foam (that he called a 'Rhombus" bomb) that, when exposed to a laser, expanded exponentially, trapping whoever was in the space in a wall of rubbery foam. Since it was oxygenated, the thugs would be able to breath through it, until someone chopped them out of it.
While working on the provided computer to set things up, he backdoored several security routers, getting his to run an IP ping trace to the location of the computer equipment streaming the video of his bound and threatened family and girlfriend.
The family and girlfriend were traced to their true location: an old shutdown Blockbuster video store in Oceanside, CA.
Using his old college computer skills, he accessed an old FTP network file that he once used to lock up computers at his college on exam day; the lock usually had some form of childish message like "I have a computer virus; sorry! No test today!", however, today, he'd do the same but instead of a childish message, he'd send the address of his family's location to the LAPD's computers along with instructions to shut down all power grids to everything in the Mojave Desert as an indication that his family was safe, then turn the power back on, making it seem like a power station shift.
A 1/2 hour later, the power did indeed flicker, and Doc said he was ready to perform the 'biodimantium' process. Crimemaster volunteered one of his thugs to be a guinea pig for Doc's process. Doc started the process on him, with Crimemaster watching the Doc's face closely. The second before Doc engaged the laser, Doc smiled. Crimemaster saw it and knew to get out of there. Crimemaster immediately vaulted out of the room just as the dozen or so thugs and the 'guinea pig thug', became engulfed in the expanding rubbery foam of the Doc's "Rhombus" bomb. Doc walked out of the bunker without trouble, alive and well. Crimemaster got away again, but left the Doc a note on the fence.
"It is not over between you and me. Death is our only release now."
After getting his family and girlfriend moved to an undisclosed (Australia) location, Doc Diamond decided to continue in his quest to hunt down Crimemaster and stop his threats to him and those he loves once and for all. Although Doc needed Geneticon's resources, he decided to quit the company, preventing any further damage or potential attacks that may result from his continued work there. He did, however, take all of his files and work with him.
The next day, while pondering what his next move was, Doc Diamond saw a live TV broadcast of a battle that had a new local hero called "Ascender" engaged with dozens of villains...including a few Crimemaster thugs. As a last favor to ask of the LAPD, he asked for a helicopter ride to San Francisco to help in the fight. There, he and several other heroes joined together to help Ascender defeat the numerous villains. Days after that, Doc Diamond became a member of Ascender's newly formed "Protectors" super-group.
Although the Doc is glad to use his powers to help protect others, he won't stop in his hunt for Crimemaster and the total defeat of Crimewave. He also must work on a cure for himself. With the Protector's new base in what was once the Palisades military base at the foot of the Golden Gate bridge, Doc has set up his own lab in their new super-group base facility.
Doc is also concerned with another threat. The Biodimantium continues to spread across his body; if left unchecked or not reversed, he will become encased in a head-to-toe shell of biodimantium, forever trapped; forever sealed.
Crystal 'Gravitic Gal' Galloway is the daughter of two super-villains.
As she grew up in her 'tough love' home in Seattle, Washington, she began to hate and despise her parents.
At age 16, her parents demanded she join them in a bank robbery, giving Crystal a pair of 'gravitic' gloves, a gyroscope belt and a pair of 'gravitic' boots they'd stolen from GUARD. Upon discovering her parents were to drag her along on a lowly, stereotypical 'bank robbery' instead of hosting her expected 'Sweet 16' party, Crystal became enraged. After her father and mother both slapped Crystal, she calmed down. She'd agree to go along on the robbery after all.
Her intentions, however, were much darker.
She'd go along with her parents during the robbery, however, she planned on killing her parents there at the scene of the crime, take off with the money and give herself one hell of a Sweet 16 party.
During the robbery, as she was about to kill her parents, the police arrived. With her parents in a pitched fight with the police, using their low-powered super-villain abilities, Crystal instead went out the back of the bank with the money only to have a mysterious unknown superhero, named Vantage waiting for her at the door. She was about to fight, when Vantage asked her if she wanted to get away from her abusive parents, or rot in jail with them. He said I'm giving you the choice; a choice to change your stars - but the offer's window was to close in 10 seconds. It took 3 seconds for Crystal to drop the bag of money, go back inside the bank, and beat the tar our of her parents, turning them over to the police. Vantage arrived on the scene praising "Gravitic Gal's" heroism, introducing her as a new superhero. She turned over the bags of money as well. Strangely enough, no video cameras were found operational or recording during any of the robbery, inside nor outside the bank..
Vantage then took Crystal around the corner to a small, yet eloquent fancy table with a simple cheeseburger and milkshake (her favorite) prepared and ready for her. He then gave her $1000 (what was to be reward money for capture of any bank robbers) and after they ate, he told her to go off and have a good time. He also gave her a key to an apartment that was two blocks down the road, paid up for the month. Vantage told her that the apartment was hers, the money was hers and if she so chose to, he could teach her how to be a superhero...or he would never see her again and let fate decide her future.
She chose to be trained as a superhero.
She hated the physical workouts, the acrobatics, the learning of laws and rules and 'being careful not to hurt innocents in battles', yet each time she got upset, he always reminded her of what her potential was. Regardless, training Crystal was no easy task for Vantage.She'd train by day for 12 hours, and then return to her apartment...and sleep for the other 12. Over the next two months, Crystal trained relentlessly, wanting to be the best, but each day she was also wanting real action, not training.
Most of Crystal's training was done in what Vantage called a 'gravity void'; a strange purplish skied place with large floating islands and rocks, with gravity fluctuations randomly popping up. The gravity fluctuations helped Crystal in learning about gravity and how to control it with her new powers.
Her day finally came when Vantage mentioned a fellow new superhero known as "Ascender" was being accosted by dozens of super-villains in San Francisco. This was her moment to prove being a hero; help others, not yourself.
Vantage opened a portal to San Francisco where both Vantage and Gravitic Gal arrived with several other heroes to help save Ascender. Hundreds of villains later, Gravitic Gal, Vantage, Ascender and a few other 'protecting' heroes stood in victory over the defeated villains. She became a media sensation overnight.
Days later, Crystal was asked if she wanted to join the Protectors. She agreed, however, Ascender was in a tough position; her parents wouldn't turn over legal rights to her and the court couldn't find her a legal guardian in her family or from a state list of volunteers to turn her over to while her parents were incarcerated. Vantage volunteered to be her 'guardian', thus allowing her to live in the Protector's new base of operations with Vantage and the rest of the team out at the old abandoned military base at the foot of the Golden gate Bridge previously called "The Palisades".
Vantage told Crystal that her preliminary training was over, however, her greatest trials were just beginning.
Now a member of the new super-group the Protectors, Crystal believes she has turned a new page in her young life. She still has her selfish, teenage moments and temper tantrums, however, she quickly corrects herself and refocuses to being a superhero.
As for Crystal's parents, well they were sentenced to prison for 15 years.
The problem: her parents just escaped prison.
Crystal enjoys the attention of being a superhero, as well as the kindness and camaraderie her fellow teammates show to her. If only she didn't feel like somehow, Vantage might be...family...or for that matter, that Devil-Man is just way too 'hot'...
Psimind is otherwise known as the brilliant young physicist, Dr. Toyama Mitsuhara, age 18.
Toyama was a Japanese test tube baby, composed of the world's most brilliant and compatible DNA fused together in making him a 'super-genius'.
At age 2, he was solving math equations and speaking 3 languages fluently; by 10, he'd composed dozens of symphonies, earned a bachelor's degree; by his 18th birthday he completed his 7th degree; his doctorate in physics.
At age 13, Toyama began to exhibit new mental powers. At one point, Toyama believed he was superior to everyone and everything. He came dangerously close to using his powers in becoming a villain. That's when his parents sent his to the United States, to visit his uncle in San Francisco.
His uncle was a renown martial arts teacher in the Bay area. When Toyama arrived, his uncle immediately knocked him on his back, warning him to be careful of his surroundings. When Toyama went to attack his uncle, he realized his powers didn't work. His uncle has a psionic scrambler on him, allowing Toyama's powers to be turned on and turned off. Toyama soon found out his uncle worked for GUARD.
Over the next five years, while working on his additional college degrees, Toyama learned humility, honor, dignity and focus. During that same time, Toyama learned how to use his new powers. He was now a better man for the training. He valued his uncle's training greatly, and for the first time in his life, respected someone.
One day, during focus training, Toyama was told by his uncle that it was 'time'; time for Toyama to spread his wings and enter the real world. Toyama was told of a battle happening a 1/2 mile from their location; a battle where a fledgling hero known as "Ascender" needed Toyama's help. it was now time for Toyama to take the path of a hero, or that of a villain; there was no other choice for one such as he.
Toyama chose to be a hero.
As the superhero Ascender was battling dozens of villains, all at one time, Toyama arrived on the scene, along with several other unknown heroes, and commenced dispensing justice on nearly a an additional hundred troops and villains. In the end, this impromptu hero team stood victorious.
When Toyama went back to his uncle's place hours later, his uncle was gone. His uncle's personal things had been packed and taken. His uncle's scrambler laid broken on the table beside a note. The note, in his uncle's handwriting, said, "Your destiny is now yours now to control. You are truly one of my best students. You are family. You honor me. Don't look for me. I'll find you...later." After his signature, a post script said "Psimind. That is your new name."
Psimind it was.
Now a member of Ascender's newly formed "Protectors" super-group, operating out of the old abandoned military base located at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge called "The Palisades".
Psimind has truly learned how to operate in a team, including how to make new friends, but most importantly, he has learned how to be a hero . . . even while he's working on his 8th degree.
Simius is a gorilla (designated as A.P.E 1001) that was scientifically augmented by the diabolically mad scientist and inventor, Dr. Phlebotinum, for use as part of his mind-controlled 'A.P.E.' army intended to be used for taking over and ransoming California's capitol of Sacramento. Of the thousands of augmented apes Doctor Phlebotinum created, "A.P.E. 1001" (Augmented Primate Experiment number 1001) was the only augmented ape that retained any form of independent thought. Not only was "A.P.E. 1001" free to think for itself, but it was also smart; damn smart.
When Dr. Phlebotinum discovered A.P.E.1001's uniqueness, he tested its IQ; it was 240. The problem was that it had independent thought, which Dr. Phlebotinum couldn't tolerate, thus, he mentioned to one of his scientists to kill it. Simius, understanding English at this point, as well as reading lips and understanding body language, faked a heart attack and seizure, making itself seem dead. When one of the A.P.E. handlers entered 1001's cage, 1001 attacked the handler and escaped the facility. It went out into the hills outside of Sacramento, fleeing captivity and a death sentence.
Several days later, 1001 has found by a kind old family in the Sacramento hills. 1001 was starving and was very wary of people, but the couple's body language told 1001 they were not cruel people. He was taken in and fed, as well as treated with kindness and respect. In time, 1001 began to trust people like this. 1001 helped around the old couple's farm, all the while the old couple taught him how to read and write. In the next few weeks, 1001 learned not only English, but Spanish and Korean (thanks to the neighbors). 1001 began reading scientific books, enjoying articles of anything related to technology. 1001 soon figured out how to use a computer and the Internet, where 1001 found limitless knowledge and learning available with only a few keystrokes and clicks of a computer mouse. 1001 absorbed everything it learned.
Months after his escape, 1001, who was later called "Caesar" (after the 'Planet of the Apes' movie reference) by the old couple, saw on TV that Sacramento was being attacked by Dr. Phlebotinum and his 'A.P.E.' army. Seeing many people being mauled and killed by his augmented brethren, Caesar knew he had to do something to stop this. He'd learned how to drive the old couple's pick-up truck, and drove it to the place he'd once escaped from. There was no one there, except for a room of gorilla corpses that obviously failed the augmentation process. There, in the lab, he studied the equipment, the Doctor's notes, and the processes by which the doctor had augmented Caesar's fellow apes. Caesar decided to concoct a plan; a plan that would return his fellow apes to their original state and stop the bloodshed...as well as stop Doctor Phlebotinum.
Over the next hour, Caesar reprogrammed hundreds of Dr Phlebotinum's security drones that retained tranquilizer darts into computer-controlled drones replaced by 'de-augmentation' darts; darts that would turn the augmented apes back into their original form. The drones had a fire control system tied through the WiFi systems around Sacramento that was linked to each augmented ape's tracking chip (which the doctor obviously put in the apes after 1001 got away). While there, he saw several large costumes that the doctor had experimented with for use on his ape army. A brown and gold costume, tagged as 'too bland', hung on the wall. Caesar took the costume and made it his. The costume his fellow augmented ape brethren were in were red and gold. Plan in hand, Caesar took off to stop the assault on Sacramento.
With the drones loaded up in the pick-up truck, Caesar drove to the state capitol, just short of the capitol's parking lot. The area was surrounded by military and police, with a few dozen apes and humans dead across the grounds and up the steps of the capitol building. At the moment, there was no shooting. Caesar stepped up behind a police officer and grabbed a bullhorn announcing he was with the humans to stop Dr. Phlebotinum and for their forces to pull back while he (Caesar) utilized a drone system to tranquilize and change the ape army back to what they once were. Shocked and unsure what to think, they followed his direction. Caesar then activated the drones and within 5 minutes, nearly 95% of the apes had been tranquilized and reverted, the remaining few percent were humanely tranquilized by animal control personnel.
Caesar informed the police and military to stand back and allow him to take out the doctor and his remaining apes, since only Caesar knew the Doctor's weaknesses (learned from the doctor's hidden journal Caesar found back at the lab). Again, the police and military agreed but mentioned if 'Caesar' didn't finish the job in the next 5 minutes, the police and military would take over. Caesar agreed and with great agility and speed, entered the capitol building.
In the capitol building, Caesar was accosted by several more of his fellow augmented apes. In a difficult battle, Caesar was able to knock them out, but Caesar was hurt in the battle, including a broken leg. Struggling through the pain, he shuffled to an office adjacent to the governor's office where the doctor and four remaining apes were holed up. There, in the adjacent office, he set up a video link to a 'special' person. Caesar then engaged the apes in the governor's office, using every piece of furniture as a weapon. 4 1/2 minutes later, Caesar won. Doctor Phlebotinum then started shooting his energy weapons as Caesar, chasing him. Caesar led the doctor to the adjacent office and whipped the computer monitor around, showing a live video of the doctor's mother from an old folks home. The Doctor saw his mother and immediately changed his demeanor. She yelled at him stating he was a 'bad boy' and that she was 'ashamed' of her son; the doctor dropped to his knees crying like a chided child, yelling "no, mamma! I'm doing it for you and everyone! I'm trying to show how smart I am so you'd be proud of me! Please don't be mad at me mama..." where after the doctor broke down into a fetal position crying...just as the military showed up. Caesar had saved the day.
Afterwards, in several live interviews, Caesar was asked what and who he was, mentioning he simply wanted to to help protect people including the same type of people who were kind to him when he was lonely and hungry. When asked if he was some type of mutated simian or Homo Erectus, he said, "I'm neither, yet both. You can simply call me...'Simius'. Thus, A.P.E. 1001 and 'Caesar' was now officially known as "Simius".
After Simius helped restore the remaining apes back to their natural state and disclosing the doctor's lab and what had happened there, California went crazy about the ape-man known as Simius. The University of California, Berkley provided Simius 'uninterrupted access and full academic scholarships' for any degrees he chose to study.
Over the next few years, Simius' story fell the wayside as he applied himself towards a doctorate in applied sciences. During that time, Simius created a semi-sentient drone-like golden glowing orb he called "Di"; the orb was like a mobile floating computer interface he'd use to get information, help schedule things and interface with others over a remote distance. He was having an incredible academic life...
...until the day he heard a new hero, Ascender, was being accosted by dozens of super-villains and troops in Oakland. After much thought, Simius decided to go help the hero. When Simius arrived on the scene, several other heroes also joined in and helped out in defeating what eventually became hundreds of villains and troops. In the end, the band of heroes, including Simius, stood victorious.
Days later, Simius was asked to join Ascender's newly formed super-group, the Protectors. Simius agreed. Within the next year, the Protectors were in Sacramento received a honorary proclamation when over 150 villains and troops assaulted them on the capitol grounds. The place turned into a war zone for the heroes. In the end, they won. Simius, for the 2nd time, had saved Sacramento from destruction. Simius was awarded honorary US citizenship and California state citizenship for his actions. He also finally got his own state driver's license...and several types of pilot's licenses.
Still attending college at UC Berkley, Simius had set up residence with his new team at the once abandoned military base located at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge, known as the Palisades. There, Simius has a lab and computer tech center to engineer new inventions for the Protectors and mankind.
As for Doctor Phlebotinum, well, he was broken out of the insane asylum by other villains wanting to use his genius. The old folks that took him in during his time of need eventually died of old age. In respect, Simius took their family name as his new last name. Now, Caesar Steinbeck, an augmented ape was now not only a new US citizen, California citizen, college graduate, pilot and noted design engineer, but a true superhero to boot.
Ominotago "Kat" Katohowee
Very little is known of this mysterious mystic. He changes up his accents routinely, however, he has definitely shown an affinity for all things Americana.
His first appearance was in stopping a bank robbery with the daughter (Gravitic Girl) of two super-villains (her parents), helping the daughter with the choice of either being a hero, or a becoming a villain, like her parents. She's since chosen to be a hero. With that, he's taken her under his wing and trained her how to use her powers as well as being a better person...and a better hero.
Recently, Vantage and Gravitic Gal joined forces with several other heroes to aid the new west-coast hero, Ascender, from being assaulted by numerous villains and troops in Oakland, California. Vantage, Gravitic Gal and the other heroes stood victorious after the battle, garnering massive media attention.
Days later, Vantage was asked to join Ascender's new band of heroes, The Protectors, at the bequest of the rest of the team and Gravitic Gal. Vantage agreed and even volunteered to be Gravitic Gal's legal 'guardian' while her parents were incarcerated.
Since then, Vantage has shown his cool demeanor and incredible mystical powers, as well as his remarkable martial arts skills in numerous missions and battles. He is a humble, quiet and at times creepy addition to the Protectors, but no one can negate that vantage has a heart of gold or anything other than a kink soul.