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Thread: The MetaWar Saga (unfinished)

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    Post The MetaWar Saga (unfinished)

    MetaWar: Beginnings

    by Christopher Darque

    Table of Contents

    1. The first days
    2. Thor
    3. Meeting the government
    4. Geo & Shadow
    5. Olympus meeting
    6. Psyche & Speed
    7. Nova & Atlas
    8. Command Briefing
    9. Fight, Loki introduced (2)
    10. Hunting Serial Killers Part I
    11. Hunting Serial Killers Part II & Mad Mongo Transcript
    12. The Lession (6)
    13. Pulsar and Nova (8 )
    14. The rogue speedster Zippy (9)
    15. Philadelphia (9)
    16. Olympus Masks (10)
    17. The Praetorian Guard (11)
    18. The Day of the Dinosaurs Part I (11)
    19. The Day of the Dinosaurs Part II
    20. Olympus Day 357

    () refers to months since Day One


    Last edited by Ao; 04-13-2009 at 02:12 AM.

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    Default Chapter 1

    Foreword by
    The Editors of Olympus

    All of the material in this work was originally recorded electronically. Much of it comes from video recorded interviews, the rest from meetings and other similar events. As much as is possible we have tried to preserve the actual words of the participants. Certain contributors are such unique individuals that we have had to adopt somewhat radical presentations of their words.

    The first recording was made at the beginning of the third year following Olympus Day One. Pulsar recorded most of his chapters at the very end of the year.

    Many of the events described within these pages are matters of public record. What we offer is the inside look. A vast amount of false material has sprung up around Olympus so we offer the following comment: Any resident of Olympus can verify every single bit of this material. Any alterations we attempted would be rapidly exposed.

    This is the record of what really happened. It is told by those who's actions were central to the recent history of our planet.







    Chapter 1

    Two years ago, almost to the day.

    For some reason we have never understood a few hundred of us changed. We became Gods.

    Too many for one little planet, in the beginning we were so scattered it was easy to believe we were unique. But each day brought a new story, a whisper, a blurry picture.

    There were people out there somewhere who were doing things that no human had ever done before, so they said. Average folks resist radical new ideas, but the evidence mounted fast.

    Then exposure, live on national television.

    Took just a little over two months.

    Has any video, outside of the Zapruder film of the JFK assassination, ever been analyzed as much? 'The Fateful Four' was what they were eventually called. None of them lived out the day so they never got to tell us what they called themselves.

    Would the world be different if the other four had not been in that city on that particular day? Only one of them lived there, people always seem to forget that. If evil had won, would they win in the end, would they win tomorrow?

    But they were all there. Eight MetaHumans met in battle in the heart of a major city, it really is a wonder that so few people were killed.

    Twelve died, eight humans, four MetaHuman. The other four became superstars. Well superstars in concept anyway, our speedster made sure we vanished when the fight was done.

    Do you remember the next 48 hours? People call it 'The Great Pause' because it seemed the world was on hold, waiting for 'The Four' to appear.

    I remember four people trying to get to know each other with no time to do it. We trusted each other from the first moment, but we had no idea who we had just fought beside.

    All were agreed we had done the right thing, some were hit hard by the deaths of our opponents. I was not one of those, I see no other way.

    But what lay before us was too much, too much power, too much responsibility, too much of everything. We all needed about a week to sit and think about it. Any notion of that was removed from all of us within hours of the battle. The news was insane, reactions were intense, and confused. I heard some really funny things, and some stuff that made me want to cry.

    We had hours.

    We really almost went our separate ways, technically we did for about two hours at one point. Speed would not let go. No matter where any of us went, he followed. He talked, and talked, and talked. Psyche brain-blasted him into unconsciousness, 10 seconds after he woke up, he was talking to her again. Speed knew he needed us.

    We all came back.

    Ever met a Telepath? As nice as... most are, I would avoid it if I were you. They read you, all of you, without effort. Your whole life flashes before their eyes, with great detail and depth. All the little private things only you knew about, they know. It is unsettling.

    It makes them powerful, even in a room full of power. We listened to her that day. She told us that we were all Heroes. Not perfect, not supermen, but Heroes. One solid bit of trust out of which came so very much.

    A new Superpower was born. I mean that in the way they used to mean that term. The four of us represented as much power as a major nation, and we knew it.

    A Telepath, A Speedster, A Superman & An Energy Master

    Psyche, Speed, Thor & Pulsar

    Speed got the clothes and masks we wore that day. Now they are in a glass case for people to look at, still kinda feel weird about that.

    Psyche and I could not fly back then, and Thor of course has never learned. So we took a limo to the TV studio. Speed ran along, around, and ahead, of us as we traveled the twenty miles or so.

    You probably remember that press conference far better than I. A lot of it was just surreal blur. We showed off our powers, Psyche went last not because she was shy, but because we knew she would scare people in a way the other three of us would not. She did. They were, we moved on.

    I remember a shower of questions. Most of which we would not answer like 'Who are you?'. Quite a few we had not idea how to answer as in 'Why did this happen?'. I understand they were confronted with something beyond all possible prediction, but still, only 1 out of every 10 questions was even slightly decent.

    Finally I got tired of it, and asked everyone to please just sit down for a moment.

    Then I spoke. I told the world in simple terms that there now existed some unknown number of superpowered individuals. I said we had no real idea how many but it had to be something above 100, perhaps many times that number.

    The world had changed.

    I hated having to say that we four feared that many of the people who have so suddenly gained these powers might misuse them. Power corrupts, absolute power does worse. I invited them to consider the power of the four of us.

    I said quite simply "We are beyond all normal human control. We choose to stand with humanity but others will not. Four others already made the wrong choice. They will not be the last."

    Then I spoke to all the MetaHumans out in the World.

    These words I remember quite well, kinda proud of them.

    "Because we are different we have decided on the term that will be used for our kind, MetaHuman."

    "I would like to speak to my brother and sister MetaHumans. One day not too long ago you woke up different. Faster, stronger, or just,” My force field flickered about me for a moment, “different."

    "We do not know why this happened, we do not even really understand what has actually happened. But we do know we now have power. Power beyond imagination. Whatever our lives were before no longer matters, this is what we now are. We accept that."

    "You have power. How are you going to use it?"

    "We four have already made our choice clear. Now we are asking you to do the same."

    "In one month there will place... a place we will call home. If you are MetaHuman there will be room for you there. We wish to meet all of you. Together we have some really big decisions to make about the future."

    "And because I must, because two days ago I killed a MetaHuman, my final words must be to the very few of you out there who have already made a bad choice."

    "If you take lives, if you cause chaos, we will come for you."

    "We are... Justice."

    The others were standing beside me as I spoke the last lines.
    It did make a nice poster.

    At my signal, Speed popped all of us out of the building.

    I am Pulsar, and this is our story.




    Pulsar, Psyche, Thor & Speed



    Last edited by Alexander Tau; 12-09-2011 at 03:21 AM.

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    Default Chapter 2


    You know me as Thor.

    Took me a long time to accept that name, now it is the only one that matters.

    I did not pick it for myself, the other three did that. But hey, I'm blond, big, good-looking, it does make a kind of sense.

    Not sure why I am doing this, everyone watched what we have done for the last three years. What more do you need to know?

    Questions. They told me there were questions I could answer.

    Oh it's a Test! A test without someone trying to kill me, I am beginning to warm to this task.

    Never could follow instructions, these are not in any order.

    #37
    No I am not Invulnerable. People like to say it but it really is not true. Compared to you I might seem to be but that is something different. My skin is about twice as dense as the average human being. My other tissues are similar.

    I heal about twice as fast as most. Sounds nice but it is not Wolverine-style regeneration.

    #38
    Bullets hurt, but they cannot kill me. A tank shell would probably hurt me quite a bit.

    #82
    I have always believed we made the only choice we all could have made. If we had not stood up as Justice I firmly believe the world would have fallen to chaos.

    Hundreds of unchecked gods running amok.

    I have never regretted it for a moment.

    #117, 118, 119
    My Hammer weighs 222 pounds. The grip is wrapped in a thick layer of absorbent rubber to cushion my hand when I hit things. It is not enchanted, and it does not return to me when I throw it.

    It was a gift from everyone who knows me. You probably do not know this but it is the tradition in Olympus for everyone to get together to buy one special gift for birthdays and other occasions.

    I got it the first year of Olympus so I have had it for a little over 2 years now.

    #259
    I am not Superman, 'A Superman' is a general classification that we use for people with my basic abilities.

    #1
    What do I remember about the beginning?

    I remember a whole lot of work, and a whole lot of not knowing.

    You praise us for standing up, and you should. We looked the whole unknown number of would-be gods in the eye and said "Behave, or else!". Were we four of the strongest MetaHumans on the planet, or perhaps just 4 average ones. Would others of our kind respond to our call, or gather to remove us from their path.

    We prepared for both in that short month after the press conference.

    Psyche and Speed had both been unable to resist the lure of using their powers for their own personal gain. Both insist they only took from criminals, I believe Psyche. Speed though, never been all that sure about. It is so easy for him to just take whatever he wants.

    We had almost unlimited funds, and with that kind of money you can perform a whole set of miracles. We became a Foundation within days of the press conference. Without any of the four of us revealing our human identities to anyone we became legal entities. It was explained to me a number of times, still have no idea how it happened.

    #122
    My driver's license says 'Thor'.


    #123
    Why Wyoming? A small army of real estate people looked everywhere to find the biggest chunk of land in the United States. They found it somewhat odd that we added the clause that being near unused
    land owned by the United State government was a plus. On that one we were thinking ahead.

    The purchase of a number of pieces of land, along with our eventual annexing of some government land gave us some 8,000 square miles.

    Today you call it the Sovereign Territory of Olympus.

    In the beginning it was just home.


    #51

    Kid Flash was the first MetaHuman to arrive, big surprise. Exactly two hours after we first set foot on our new land he blasted into our midst. For about three minutes he and SPeed blurred around us, while
    we tried to decide if there was a battle going on or not.

    16 years old, hyper in a way that made Speed a whole lot less annoying, and dying to help out. Until that point we had not made any plans for using our MetaHuman abilities to assist in construction. But once the idea took hold it turned out to be enjoyable.

    He hated the name Kid Flash. He bitched, he pitched about a million alternatives, but he was stuck with it. He did not shut up about it until finally Pulsar told him that someday his name would be Flash.

    Psyche found the second. The day after we arrived in Wyoming she left to visit Colleges. In 14 days she visited 8 institutions of higher learning. She was recruiting what would become the core of our administration and science groups.

    I have to give Pulsar credit for that idea. Have Psyche screen the best and the brightest young women and men. We needed a broad spectrum of skills but mostly we needed adaptable minds who could
    help us manage the beast we were creating.

    Speed watched over Psyche of course, but the only incident involved the MetaHuman I mentioned. You know her as Nova.

    Psyche knew Nova's secret the moment they met. It is somewhat unfortunate that the telepath chose to speak the secret out loud while they were in a public place.

    The fires that resulted from Nova accidentally powering up caused a lot of property damage but no injuries. Despite the reputation she later gained, Nova really is a sweet girl.

    The brief fight she and Speed had qualifies as the first superpowered misunderstanding battle. I understand these are quite common in comic books but fortunately not in real life.

    #2
    Do I think what we did was important?

    I think we saved the World. There was destruction, too many people, Human and MetaHuman, died, but we are still here.

    I am Thor, the Hammer of Olympus!

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    Default Chapter 3


    Our first direct contact with the United States government did not go well.

    We did not expect it to go well, they had no idea what to expect.

    There was a group of FBI agents at the TV studio when we did the first Press Conference. They would probably have tried to talk to us after we were done if Speed had not run us past them.

    Every college that Psyche visited had agents of someone or the other. They applied for positions, they took jobs in hotels, it was a massive effort. For her part Psyche spotted them instantly and choose not to engage in the least.

    She told Speed to do the same, and for once he listened.

    So it was at the still unnamed home base in Wyoming were we had our first official contact with the US government. Three weeks after the Press Conference.

    4 Suburbans full of FBI agents arrived. They were waved through the front gate and into the parking lot in front of the Admin building.

    The agents in the lead car entered the building, flashed their badges at the Staff, and asked to see the four of us. They were shown to the main conference room, we were called.

    We met them in costume of course.

    They asked us to remove our masks, of course.

    I said "No".

    "We are Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigations, here under the direct orders of the President of the United States of America. You will remove your masks and identify yourselves, now."

    "We,” I pause to raise my hands which crackled and glowed with blue energy, “are superpowered MetaHumans, any one of us could kill all of you before you could even blink, and we say... No. Next request?"

    “We know you you are.” gotta give them credit, they had guts.

    A laugh and “No they don't” from Psyche

    I crossed my arms across my chest and waited.

    They conferred, radios were involved.

    "Your presence is requested for a meeting in Washington DC. The details are in this envelope. This meeting is in three days."

    "A meeting with?"

    "The President, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, most of the Intelligence community and representatives of Congress. We do take you guys seriously. We... apologize for any rudeness."

    "We accept. You will be shown out."

    That was not so bad, but it was a taste of things to come.

    The location for the meeting was on the outskirts of DC, in a largely commercial area. The actual building was only 3 stories and seemed to house a number of politics-related businesses.

    We arrived on time, and caught only a couple of stares as we walked into the building. A polite young woman was waiting for us, she escorted us to a waiting area. Much like the green rooms of entertainment there was food and drink available.

    We did not touch any of it.

    After about 10 minutes the same young woman appeared to walk us to the meeting. As the doors to the actual meeting room were being opened Psyche and I looked at each other.

    "Nobody?" I asked.

    "Nobody." she replied.

    I had felt a great deal of normal energy inside, a lot of display screens. But no people.

    And that was how it was.

    Four Chairs, for us it seemed. and two tables pushed together to form a wide V. Arraigned facing us were Nine large screens.

    The President in the middle, someone in uniform on his right. On his left what could only be a Senator. The other screens were filled with mostly men and two women.

    Looking at us.

    Scared, did not need Psyche to tell me that. Forgive me but I was feeling smug. Powerful and Smug, bad combo.

    "Please sit down, make yourself comfortable. Would you like something to drink?"

    This came from the President.

    "Thank you Mr. President, we are fine"

    We sat. Even Speed. I am pretty sure this meeting was the longest I have ever seen him sit in once place.

    The President introduced each of the people on the monitors. I was impressed, this was the core of the US government, except for the Supreme Court, everybody was represented.

    Then he launched into the real reason for the meeting. They recognized both the great potential, and great danger, that our powers represented. Ok, good so far.

    He felt that our call to other MetaHumans, and our willingness to stand up for what is right commendable, but not enough. Hmmm...

    This danger, this risk, was the province of the government of the United States. uh oh.

    He eventually finished with a question.

    "So what do you think, can we work together?"

    My turn.

    "Mr President, we are glad you recognize the potential danger that MetaHuman represent. We anticipated your offer and must respectfully decline."

    "So far we have seen a wide variety of abilities among MetaHumans. Some are simply a little faster, a little stronger, than the norm."

    "We four are different, and we can only assume there are more just like us out there. Even if we wished to do so we cannot place ourselves under your control. We are responsible for what we do with our powers, and we must decide how they are to be used."

    "So we make you a counter-proposal. We wish to have our lands in Wyoming, and all adjacent federal lands, be declared the independent Sovereign territory of Olympus. Using the model of native American reservations this is not impossible."

    "In return we will take responsibility for all MetaHuman activity. Those that break the law, who take life, or who plot to impose their will on others will be our concern. "

    "We will work with you, we will not work for you."

    "If you choose to reject our offer, we will leave the United States and set up operations elsewhere. This would not be our preferred choice since three of us are American citizens.”

    “But what we are now is bigger than any country."

    "We are going to change the world Mr. President. Work with us and the United States will be the first to benefit from what we can do. Reject us, and you will only be coming to us later."

    "The bulk of the MetaHumans in the world seem to be located in North America. Without us, life here might get rough."

    I stopped because Psyche was speaking to me, fast intense words. She was white.

    "They have six of us in a lab. They are... They are. Testing them. hurting them. Oh, god. They are not criminals, they have not hurt anybody. We must help them!"

    "You can read them? They are just faces on a screen."

    "So? They are two floors up, all of them. Surrounded by pretty much the entire Secret Service. They are terrified of us and will do anything, anything, to gain any level of control."

    Turning back to the face of the President, I resumed.

    "You have Six MetaHumans in a lab in Maryland."

    I always was the direct type.

    "It is a clinic, we are not certain they are not in fact ill. Since it is obvious you know I will not bother to deny it. We are doing what we feel we must. This could easily become a battle for survival and I intend for the human race to win" the President shot back.

    "These are not criminals, you have no right to hold them."

    "We have every right, and we will do what we have to do. Who are you to question me? I am the President of the United States of America!"

    I just looked at him. My force field came up, it slowly intensified until the light from it was blinding.

    Amplifying and twisting the sounds of my voice I rumbled.

    "I am something you cannot possibly understand."

    "You have our offer."

    "And Mr. President, this form of meeting is an insult. Please do not repeat it."

    A wave of my hand and all the monitors, and every other electronic device in the building, fried. A few nice sparks but nothing movie quality. I allowed my forcefield to drop away.

    We walked out of the building, meeting no resistance whatsoever.

    Psyche asked “Olympus”?

    I responded “It needed a name, good as any.”

    Psyche whispered “Zeus walks again.”

    On the way back to the Hotel we were all quiet as we thought about what had just happened. Had I just told off the freaking President of the United States?

    Six of us, lab rats. The President can wait.

    I touched my earpiece "Speed get in the car".

    Door pops, wind howls for a half second, Speed is sitting beside me.

    "yeah boss?"

    Speed always talks in blurts, there really are no spaces between the words. There is also little tone variation, a question sounds exactly like an exclamation. So to make it readable we will add spaces, and leave off the rest.

    "Recon the hotel before we get there, look at every person in the place. We will be evacing as soon as we get our stuff together. "

    "Psyche, call home. Locate a hotel 100 miles away from this 'clinic'. That is your evac point Speed. Recon the clinic as soon as you can. Psyche you can direct him?"

    She nodded and continued talking to Central.

    "Got it?"

    "yes boss. we done for now."

    "Yes."

    Wind, slam, gone.

    "Central has the hotel set, and will send the location to Speed. We are going to get them."

    She was not asking you understand, at least she was not asking the obvious question.

    "Do we have a choice? Do I have a choice? No.” I said, rather calmly I wish to add.

    “I have to live with myself. What people choose to do voluntarily is one thing, force is another. I will not allow our kind to be treated like animals. Consequences be damned. You people want me to be Zeus, fine, we are getting them tonight." I finished.

    She smiled.



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    Default Chapter 3a



    Midnight, 1 mile south of the lab facility in western Maryland.

    It was rather isolated, as least as much as something can be in a heavily populated eastern state.

    The three of us walked down the road towards the complex.

    When history is made you really do not feel it. We knew what we were about to do might start a War, a MetaWar. The four of us were about to commit federal crimes.

    The US military was set up and waiting. Two massive Abrams Tanks sat just outside the main gate. Multiple layers of the fine troopers of the US Marine Corps were alert and focused.

    Helicopters buzzed overhead. An Apache prowled, they really are beautiful things.

    Right after Speed dropped us off we saw the first copter. It was a ways off but hard to miss.

    Psyche said idly "Do not worry about the helicopters, they will not see us until you wish them to. Neither will the marines. They are mostly nice boys."

    I was surprised, that was more power than she had displayed at that point. How little I knew back then.

    "You can do that?"

    "boss please"

    She speaks like Speed when she wants to express annoyance with me.

    So we walked down the middle of the road, laughing at the little mechanical birds that could not see us. Getting hit with a searchlight still creeped me out every sing time.

    We walked until we were inside the cleared forest area of the facility. Interesting how it had this huge outer ring of open space. At about 100 feet from the monstrous noses of the Tanks we stopped.

    "Speed"

    He arrived.

    "Everybody, get ready, time to play."

    "Psyche if anything goes wrong, stay within touching distance of me. As long as you are close I can shield you from anything."

    She nodded.

    "Everybody ready"

    "oh yeah"

    "Yes" from Psyche.

    "Sure, if I had anything to do" from Thor. He was feeling grumpy.

    "Ok, here we go."

    I reached out to the electricity around me. It was an easy matter to find the incoming power sources and short them out.

    The complex went dark.

    I pointed to each of the three helicopters in turn. Gently I 'tugged' on their electrical systems. I did not short them out, not quite anyway. I pulsed them until each in turn bugged out, or landed.

    "Psyche start sending them to la-la-land."

    We all began to walk forward. Well we walked, Speed vanished.

    Starting with the troopers in the Tanks they all fell deeply asleep. Psyche really is something.

    The front doors of the main building were massive. Thor really wanted to rip them down. But since that would not be in line with the plan, he was turned down when he offered, again.

    He did get to pry them open, without power they were rather stuck. I could have powered them open easily, but I did not mention that. Thor got to pry open 6 other doors that night. Every one of the MetaHumans was locked in a vault. No not a cell, a vault, thick walls, padded walls, it was ugly.

    They were all in bad shape, Speed evaced them, gently he promised, back to our hotel where people were waiting.

    The desire to reduce the place to rubble was almost overpowering.

    In case you were wondering, I did not.

    Sorry if you were expecting a battle. 3 years ago we could not admit we had done it. This collection will be the first time that this information has been made public.

    We returned to the Hotel, and back home.

    There was no doubt we had crossed the final line. None of us knew what was going to happen, but we did know we would see it through together.

    At least home had a name now, Olympus.


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    Default Chapter 4


    Part I

    Geo is my name now.

    To set the record straight: My intentions were good, the result was not.

    For almost a month I had studied everything I could on geology, plants, and what actually makes up the ground we walk on.

    I did study eco-systems, but well, only those of a desert.

    What I did not learn was what happens when radical change is introduced to a set of interlocked eco-systems.

    I got a wooden box and filled it with sand. Took a couple of tries but I was able to transform it into dirt. The guy at the lawn and garden shop said it was rich, somewhat fertile soil, although lacking in little biological life forms.

    So I looked up the names he gave me. I cannot make living things, I can change them but then they are no longer alive. But the tiny organisms the guy was talking about were available for purchase. Except I would need a whole lot of them for what I had in mind.

    Let me mention that at this point I did not know there were any other MetaHumans. I thought I was it.

    Most other Metas tell me I was lucky, my power manifested itself fairly quietly. Not sure why I just accepted what was happening to me, but I did. In a few days I understood what I could do, and more importantly, what I could not.

    Power, yeah, it is a drug. It changes the way you see every single thing in the world. Perhaps you think that some stuff, some basic stuff, might stay the same, sorry, no.

    We all want to be special but we hate to be different. Ever think about that? They are one in the same, just from two different points of view.

    I was special, wow, I do wish I could share those feelings with you but there are no words. But I was also different, and the depth of my difference grew each day.

    I, ah, had money. There was a place in town, everybody I knew was aware of it. A chop shop, people steal cars, this place broke them down or sold them off.

    So I put on a mask, opened a door in the wall with a wave of my hand, and walked in. Every person I saw found the air around their head turned into ether until they passed out.

    I took all the cash they had, and turned the entire building into oxygen. The cars, and people, I left intact. Put them out of business and gave me money to quit my job and learn to use my powers properly. Works for me.

    The places which produce the little critters I would need was rather impressed at the size of the order I placed. When I specified the delivery location they became concerned. It seemed not too many people needed such things in the northern Nevada desert.

    Money settles most disputes, so it really was not a problem. I also bought the little plot of land I needed.

    The trip to Nevada was really fun. First Class all the way, and then a taxi out to my new land. About forty miles to the north was the small town of Tempiute, fifty miles west stands Amargosa Valley.

    Las Vegas to the south about fifty miles. I felt I was more than far enough away from everybody.

    My plan was to transform a circle about 1 mile in diameter. One Mile. That was all. My powers do have limits, and back then they were far weaker than today. To transform the entire chop shop
    took a lot out of me. So I really thought I would be lucky to even reach a mile out.

    I spent the next 24 hours listening to the land, sensing the patterns and make up of the desert around me.

    The next morning my worms and other little critters were delivered. I thought I was ready.

    Noon. I began to alter the ground beneath my feet.

    My challenge was not just to transform the sand, that was the easy part. I also had to reach deep down and establish a natural extension to the water system. The land had to have water to become fertile soil.

    The change started slowly and then began to expand in ripples.

    It felt great... right up till the moment I lost control.

    The energy I had tapped into was too strong. I did not think I had the will to contain it. For I do not know how long I struggled for control. I just wanted it to stop.

    Finally the energy waves SNAPPED, and it was over.

    Drained, yeah that just begins to cover it. Pretty sure I blacked out for a couple minutes too. It passed after a while.

    It had worked! As far as I could see there was dirt, not sand!

    I decided to start walking north and see how far the effect had extended. I had a compass, some water & food. It was 2:02 pm.

    7pm, the sun is heading down. Still no sand in sight. I started to try and do the math in my head. We walk what a few miles an hour or so. So I had maybe crossed ten miles. If my speed was higher than that then it was even farther.

    And still for as far as I could see, dirt.

    Oh shit.

    I arrived back at my little shed after midnight. Wanna know something? I really was scared to make the call for my ride. How could they not notice? The road in my area was intact, so I thought I had managed to leave those alone.

    He noticed.

    The driver got out when he arrived. He stood and looked around. He did not say a word to me. When I got in, he got in. We drove to my hotel, he took my money, and I got out.

    The next day the news broke the story. I found out what I had done along with the rest of you.

    From my starting point I had transformed hundreds of square miles of desert. The effect stopped, mostly, when it hit the mountains but they are a little thinner than they used to be. The radius of the effect was just about 60 miles.

    See I just did not study enough about pressure. When I created the underground sources of water I filled them 100%. This would not have mattered had I only done a small area. But as the area of effect expanded my new sources of water connected with existing ones.

    And with wells. And pipes.

    Rippling across four States, my pressure wave had hit a whole lot of Cities, Towns, and Villages.

    Las Vegas, Tempiute and Amargosa Valley were hit particularly hard, their entire water system just exploded.

    Nobody died! I made the biggest mess since WWII, but nobody died.

    I understand that having a blast of water burst up from under you while you are sitting on your toilet really sucked. Large men, and women, were blown across rooms. No one was seriously hurt but a number of people did suffer injury. A whole bunch of people were angry, I get that.

    Again, I feel really bad about it, what more can I say?

    I'm Geo now, and since I came to Olympus I have tried to make up for that mistake.

    Two months later, three weeks after Olympus 'opened'. I visited the site of my 'experiment gone wrong'.

    The land was green.

    Sure it is flat, and sure it cost about $35 million dollars to turn it all into proper soil. But it is not a desert anymore.

    Kinda cool.


    Part II

    Not sure why we are all doing this. The girl from Admin who asked me was cute, so I guess that is reason enough.

    They tell me this is for everyone, and by that they mean humans too.

    Ok, fine. Then let me get something straight with you right off the bat. I am a MetaHuman, I am stronger than you, I am faster than you, and you may only see me when I wish you to, which is rarely.

    I am better than you.

    Pulsar hates it when I say that, but they promised me I could say whatever I want. They promised they would not censor me.

    We will see.

    They call me Shadow.

    So it is the early days you all wish to know about. The endless speculation you all love to spew is not enough? Do you want the truth, or just something comforting?

    The truth is that my power was a mind-blowing RUSH! I am not just invisible, I cannot be heard, I do not trip sensors of any kind, I go where I wish.

    I stole, money, food, jewelry, everything, anything. I saw it, I wanted it, I took it. I quit my job the same day I discovered my power.

    Don't get me wrong, I never hurt anyone. Oh I messed with a whole lot of people, Punked has nothing on me. But nobody got hurt. Not even once.

    I watched the big four on TV along with the rest of you I guess.

    'So there are more of me,' I thought. I did not really like the idea, in a way I felt a lot like you all did. My life was pretty good, I liked things the way they were. I wanted to be the only Invisible Man.

    Others.

    I did not really believe the four with all this Justice crap. 'We will come for you' Yeah right, find me dickheads.

    But...

    I did agree that most people with powers would go at least kinda bad, hey look at me. I was only a little bad, others though... man. They would kill, break stuff, destroy buildings, destroy my beloved StarBucks!

    Crap.

    Double Crap.

    I wanted it to all just go away, but looking around my home, filled with everything I had taken, I knew it would not.

    The only way I could live my solitary happy life was to join with others and act for, I could not believe I was even thinking this, the common good. Yech. Maybe I could cut a deal, do stupid daring-do a couple of days a week, steal the rest... probably not, damn.

    When the location of Olympus was announced I packed up and headed that way. I was not sure I would stay, I really expected the whole place to stink.

    It doesn't.

    Well not as much as every other place, so it is home.

    Yeah Pulsar and his gang have a bit of a stick up their butts. But they do mean what they say, and for reasons I will NEVER understand, they do want to help everyone, even humans.

    But I did not sign up for any of you. I signed up for me.

    I am Shadow, and you will never see me.


  7. #7
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    Default Chapter 5



    Things were rather primitive in the early days. Our meeting hall was a large long metal-walled building, with folding chairs.

    As the six of us entered I thought about all the people I was about to tell some pretty scary shit. This was still a few days before the official opening of Olympus but eleven other MetaHumans had already arrived.

    They sat in the front row, surrounded by almost all the members of the Admin team. Behind the 45 or so of them were the twenty Tech and nearly one hundred Security personnel.

    172 people, about to discuss the fate of the planet.

    Janice opened the meeting by presenting a summary of what was said, and learned when we spoke to the President and his cronies (my word not hers). You do know her right? Her title back then was Lead Administrator which translated into President. She ran, and runs to this day, Olympus. I command, but she handles everything else.

    Psyche and I watched everyone, but especially our brother and sister Metas.

    The presentation only went up to our leaving the meeting place, it did not include any other events. Some of the people in the room knew we had brought guests home with us, but nobody knew who they were until right then.

    The news that six MetaHumans were in federal custody without having committed any crimes was trumped only by the description of how they were treated.

    Shouts, curses, it got rather noisy. Going and getting them seemed pretty much the consensus.

    Now I stepped forward.

    I waved away the mike, I do not need one.

    "Everyone, please."

    "Alright, I have a question for all of you. But before I ask it I want to make one thing perfectly clear. Psyche got the information about the six right out of the President's mind. She also read a doctor who is involved. There is no mistake."

    I let them think about it for a moment as I looked as many as I could right in the eye. Not everyone was together, implications were beginning to creep into people's minds.

    "So here is how we stand. We have made our offer to the United States government, they have a counter-proposal."

    "For myself, Psyche, Thor, and of course Speed, our answer to the President's offer is no. Since we four are currently Olympus, this means that Olympus stands in defiance of the United States of America."

    "We also feel that we must rescue our imprisoned brother and sisters. To do this means we become criminals, federal criminals at that."

    "So here is the choice that faces each of you. The people on this stage are likely to come into conflict with the United States of America. We do not wish this to be so, but we see no other way."

    "I believe that the world has changed. Not might, not could, has. Only we can see it because we are the change. We do not know how many of us there are, but we know it is more than enough to reduce this planet to a cinder."

    From the front row a pleasant young female voice said

    "There are at least 600, but more than half of those are just the basic type ones. People like you Mr. Pulsar sir, around 300."

    I responded to this remarkable statement with a brilliant question of my own, "And you are?"

    "Cindy Smith"

    [Not her real human name, I will never use the actual human name of any MetaHuman resident of Olympus, or any friendly neutral. 'Villains' are different, if we have the name I will use it.]

    I looked back at Janice with the obvious question.

    She responded with "You have been busy, so have we. There is every reason to suspect she is correct. There are more of you than we thought."

    Turning back towards the crowd I said to Cindy, "Ok, thank you for that information Cindy."

    I got serious again.

    "This is the game we are playing, the stakes are the life of every child, every bird, every man, woman, and creature that walks this Earth. Nothing human society can do will stop this, but we at least have a chance. The authorities will get out of our way, but I do not know how far it will go before that happens."

    "If you wish to defy the U.S. government, risking having to leave the country, if you wish to help us in freeing the six MetaHumans, then stick around. If you do not, we will understand."

    I was playing for keeps you must understand. There were all sorts of middle ground choices. We could have spent all day talking about the things we might do. I knew what I had to do and everyone was either going to come along, or leave. This would trouble me later.

    "Those of you in our employ. If you wish to leave we will grant you a six month severance package. We understand that for you this is not going to be an easy choice. Do what you feel is right.”

    "There are eleven other people who, while new, and here before they were supposed to be..."

    A scowl and a smile from me at the row of Metas, met with smiles and laughter from them.

    "Who will be special parts of Olympus if they still wish to be. I realize this is a huge thing to deal with. But as I fear it will be for a while, time is against us."

    "If you are wondering what I am worried about it is just the U.S. military, nothing trivial. Maybe nothing will happen, but maybe the 101st Airborne is about to drop down on our damn heads. I need to know how many of you I can count on, and I am afraid I need to know now."

    "If you are uncertain, stay sitting. Please do not be afraid to do this if you feel it is the right thing for you to do. I will make it easier, anyone so much sends a harsh glance in your direction will answer to me. Everyone hears me, and I am not kidding."

    "But if you are indeed with us, please step up here."

    I moved back a couple of steps which turned out to be a good thing. Two of them kinda vaulted up onto the stage, complete with midair somersaults and pinpoint landings.

    Another flew, she was quite pretty.

    Hoots and catcalls were traded back and forth between the three on the stage and the rest. All eight of them made their way up to join us. 15 superpowered MetaHumans in one place. I got a little chill I do not mind saying. A taste of things to come.

    “I am honored by your choices. Probably going to need you because the fact is that we already rescued the six, and they are here now. Not in the best of shape but alive and grateful.”

    Stunned silence.

    More chaos, questions, cheers, the usual.

    As for the rest of the people at the meeting, and those who remained on duty who watched the tapes, we did rather well. Only three from Admin, four from Tech, and eleven from Security choose to leave.

    I got to know the new Metas and we dug in, ready for anything.

    Nothing happened.

    Granted almost every third truck that made a delivery was driven by someone who was trying to spy on us. But nothing overt. Eventually I sent my own spy to Washington in the form of Psyche.

    Turns out they simply did not know what to do. They were searching for more MetaHumans of course, but things were different now and the Metas were being elusive.

    The final days till the official opening of Olympus came, and went without major incident.

    600?



  8. #8
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    Default Chapter 6



    Part I

    I do not know how much I will say.

    More than anyone I understand how little you will be able to understand me.

    But I know you, thousands of you, intimately.

    Psyche.

    All of you are a part of me, it is hard sometimes not to use we in the place where I should be. I am a We now.

    When a Telepath reads you they get all of you. Your life plays out in our minds in a burst. We remember it all. Not every single second, but all the moments that mattered.

    Every time I touch a new person, a little more of me becomes we.

    When we first came to Olympus I had everyone record a video tape. Questions were prepared, we made a deal of it. Each of us talked about how we felt about who we had become, and what we hoped the future would bring.

    They are meant to help ground us. In my friends minds I saw the steps towards godhood being taken. They did not see what they were doing as such, but I did. I was forced to conclude I was probably doing the same.

    Hence the tapes.

    We would watch them every year, together if possible.

    Each of us has changed so much the person on the screen is almost a stranger. But they do help, a little, to keep us off of the wrong path. Those tapes are the reminder that keeps Pulsar, Thor, and the rest of the battle goons from destroying half the planet in the pursuit of good deeds.

    They know I do not mean that, I love them all. But it is not without a grain of truth, and they know that too, boo-boo.

    For me the screen shows a very faded memory. I who can remember the lives of countless people, cannot remember myself.

    All of my sisters and I are attempting to find a way to cope with this problem, perhaps we will. We have a basic rule that it is ok to go the 'We' route when you are out to scare a cretin, but not when you are with friends.

    We have turned our problem into another power. But then we are all women, and we adapt. There has only been one male Telepath. I met him, I killed him. If you had met him, you would have killed him too.

    Only time I saw Pulsar completely and utterly stunned. He did not say a single word for 96 minutes.

    Please do not pity me, I am a Goddess after all and quite thrilled with my lot in life. What I am doing is the most important work on the planet, hands down charlie brown.

    Psyche, Goddess of Olympus

    Part II

    speed

    that's me

    It is what i do what I live what i crave

    i sleep when i do for an hour a day

    i eat a whole lot and lots and lots

    sorry that I cannot form what I want to say into words that you could hear and then understand. I used to be able to do that but not anymore

    i can sit i can listen pulsar can bite me on that one i do not wish to i do not have to so why should i

    when he calls i always show up, that is the only thing that matters to me. when the police or the search & rescue or the fire department or animal control or anybody allowed to have the number calls i show up we show up

    please do not mistake my manner of speech as somehow telling you I am stupid or a child or anything like that at all because it is not the case

    i can read at speed too i love that phrase. there is a big building in washington dc the library of congress

    read it

    they say they being a bunch of people nobody ever met that travel broadens the mind guess how many places i have visited. i speak 23 languages speak them well, i read 14

    bet you never guessed that one i do not communicate well with others who are not of my kind but i try really hard i can say let me help you in over 50 languages

    of course i also know the word for demon in about eight different languages those are the words i hear just before they start throwing or shooting at me i do understand

    wish i did not have to wear the mask it is most of the problem but they are necessary Pulsar Thor and Psyche all say so and that is good enough for me i say so and that is good enough for all the other speedsters

    questions there are questions here

    what no what don't understand no no what no

    forget it none of those things make any sense to me

    ok trying again

    when i move sometimes everyone seems to be frozen but that is an extreme most of the time i feel like i am flowing along much faster than you but you look kinda normal. not sure what normal is anymore you have to understand

    it is a good thing that you cannot see us most of the time if you could the number of times we circle sit circle bounce and so on would probably be very very very annoying

    i feel a lot older than i should i bet they will eventually figure out how much more time i live compared to the normal there is that word again wish i knew what it meant

    no opinion on what we did or why we did it or what we could have done differently some people were killing other people i helped those who fought against the killers

    my new friends gave me things to do

    i live in the speed but i need something to do

    pulsar asks me to go somewhere far away and look at every single person every door everything and then write down a whole bunch of stuff then bring it back

    for 10 minutes i have purpose

    next



  9. #9
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    Default Chapter 7



    Part I

    Fire, a wonderful and scary thing.

    What if you were fire, if it was barely contained within you? If you knew that becoming angry, or even too happy, could cause the flames within you to burst out?

    Would you like my power?

    I am Nova.

    Ever since the Meta change hit me I have tried to stay calm. Even before Psyche found me I was withdrawing from normal human contact. You have heard about that day right? I freaked, things burned, it really was a nice building.

    Had kinda hoped that the weird job offer I was hearing about might be something out in the middle of nowhere. Antarctica would have been nice.

    I almost turned Speed into a cinder, felt really bad about that. Total accident, everybody says it was not my fault.

    My power is what we of Olympus call an Anti-Social. If I were playing for any of the other sides of the game I would be a Destructor. When I fight the landscape suffers.

    I envy people like Geo, or Apollo, who can control their powers so precisely. Point a gun a Speed and he will take it away from you, disassemble it, and lay it neatly at your feet.

    If you point a gun at me I have two choices, I can burn your hand off, or I can intensify my shield enough to stop the bullet. When I do the latter anything flammable within fifty feet will burst into flame, including people.

    I have a reputation. I am sure, mostly sure anyway, that the majority of my rep is because of how my powers work. I do not play well with others and that is a fact. The truth, I have caused a massive amount of destruction during my time in the field. But I believe that what I did saved lives, so I am content.

    Some of my rep though, is because of something else. I have to control my emotions you see. Anything beyond a monotone existence is not acceptable. I do not have sex. The Tech guys and girls are working on it, but I am not hopeful.

    I can project fire from any part of my body. Think about it.

    Since I have this constant flow of power within me I find I have to let a little of it out. So most of the time my eyebrows are on fire. I do not even notice it anymore, but it does freak people out. I do like that, I admit it freely.

    But.

    Since I have to control my feelings, I have to live like a freaking monk most of the time, when I have to fight, I cut loose. I laugh, I scream, I allow myself to enjoy my life and my fire.

    I light up the sky, I burn and I kill and I love every moment of it.

    I know, I freaking know ok, that I am doing terrible things. I am killing, ok I said it, I know it. It is my only release and I take complete advantage of every single moment.

    This life picked me, this power picked me, I am just trying to live with it. Don't judge me because you cannot understand what it means to be me.

    When I am allowed to be by people I consider the good guys, I am a Destructor. I destroy to do good, and I like it. Does that make me a boy?



    Part II

    It is hard to be taken seriously as a SuperHero when the whole world has seen your dick.

    The first time my power activated I was in downtown Santa Barbara, CA. I grew to 40 feet in height. My clothes did not grow with me.

    I panicked, what would you do?

    I ran, well sort of stepped carefully would be more accurate. Accidents happened all around me, my fault of course, but I did not step on anything, or anybody. Each building I passed brought a new chorus of screams. I guess seeing a huge head, of some sort, outside their window was a bit much for some people.

    Feeling scared and a little dizzy I made it out of the center of town. I was getting close to the eastern forest when the chopper found me. A news crew, with a camera and a spotlight.

    The fact that I was naked dawned on me finally and I looked for some way to cover up. A rather large U.S. flag caught my eye and it was soon wrapped around me like a towel. The people in the copter were shouting questions at me the whole time. I guess I could have talked to them, but I just wanted to get away.

    Again I ran, and this time I mean ran. The earth shook but I covered a lot of distance in a very short amount of time. I have since learned at that size I can do better than 70 mph.

    The forest loomed before me. Trees which had always seemed huge looked like models. I mean there were plenty that were taller than me, but still, the scale was just wrong. It was going to be tough to hide, even in there.

    I need to get back to my normal size, I have to. I thought that to myself rather intently, and it worked. Not smoothly, first down to 20, then 12, then what I thought was my normal 6'. Again, later I learned my normal height was now 6' 2".

    Into the forest I ran, the flag left in a puddle behind me. Felt bad about that, you are not supposed to let that flag hit the ground. I heard they did not burn it, it went to a lab somewhere and still exists. I should buy it.

    I kept moving for a couple of hours, afraid they would be searching for me. I found some old tee-shirts and managed to cover myself a little. Around 3 am I made my way home. Despite my paranoid fears, there was no one watching my apartment.

    Home, Shower, Clothes, oh yes.

    I packed a couple of bags, never really thought about doing anything but running. I read science fiction, when weird things happen people get turned into lab rats. A note to my landlord requesting that he have my utilities turned off and I was gone.

    Sequential visits to different ATMs cleared out my bank account and I headed south. There are places in the Baja where you can loose yourself and I intended to do just that. Dye my hair blond, let my whiskers grow, find some time to think.

    What the fuck had happened to me?

    Maybe I am crazy. You will never know how frightened that thought made me when it hit. I mean come on, I 'grew' to 40 feet tall and ran around Santa Barbara with my johnson hanging out?

    Delusional. oh god. That makes sense. Are you supposed to know you are crazy?

    I was 6 hours away from home, a motel was handy. I stopped, got a room under a fake name, and plopped down on the bed.

    Now I want to pause here, just so you understand. I had convinced myself that I was ill. It made sense, it explained why no one had found me, no one was looking. I was still freaked out, but I had accepted my illness and was determined to go home and get help.

    Then I turned on the TV, and saw myself.

    40' tall, and running towards the forest.

    oh. my. god.

    That flag had not covered me nearly as well as I thought it had.

    I grew.

    Through the roof, it hurt, I kept growing until I was again 40 feet tall.

    "Damn!" I swore out loud. This was the first time I had spoken at my full size and the sound of it was impressive. Deep, strong, me but I had never sounded that powerful before.

    Before I decided I was crazy I had prepared for this event. I had to rip the bags apart because I could not work the zippers but the tarps did the job. Along with some rope I had at least a basic set of shorts.

    Ah, yeah, there were about twenty people staring up at me when I was finished. They just looked. I reached down and gathered all my gear in one hand, and stepped out of the ruin of a room.

    "Sorry about that.” I rumbled as I walked away.

    "No problem man." was the rather shaky reply.

    I got clear again, and managed to force myself to shrink.

    Now I know what you are thinking. Why did I not just calm down and shrink back at the motel. I could have driven away. Remember what I paused to tell you? Going from thinking you are crazy to knowing you are some superpowered freak is bound to play havoc with your thinking processes. It sure as hell did with mine.

    My first thought when I hit full size was, damn my dick is hanging out again, so I did what I had to do to deal with that.

    After that I managed to avoid major shocks to my system until I could learn to control my changes. Today I can attain any height from my now normal 6' 2" up to 40 feet. My strength increases more than you would expect to compensate for my weight. When I am full sized I am every bit as strong as Thor. Ok maybe not quite, but close.






  10. #10
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    Default Chapter 7a


    I really did not have much choice but to head to Olympus. The authorities were looking for me they just reacted very slowly. Olympus is a cool place, hope you can visit some day My only problem: I never wanted to be a Hero.

    A little training was ok, there are some people here who helped me get my control locked down. After that I told them I did not know what I wanted to do. I was surprised when they said that was fine.

    Nice place to live, a little money. Wonder if I am supposed to talk about that or not? Well if not they can edit it out. Just for living at Olympus, and not killing innocent people, MetaHumans get a yearly salary of $50,000. That is on top of a free place to live, I have a special house with an extra-large wing.

    If you join a combat team, or PsiInt, or do anything like that, you make more. I thought 50 grand and an apartment was pretty cool. The house came later.

    But the bad stuff started to happen. Philadelphia. What can I say, I mourn along with everyone else. Tens of thousands died, so much of American history lost.

    I signed up, whatever they wanted me to do I was ready.

    Some more training, drill instructors, sheesh.

    Assignment to a combat team was fairly quick. And that is when the jokes began. Don't get me wrong, there is a bond between myself and my teammates that is stronger than blood.

    They called me 'swinger' from day one, and nobody would tell me why. They were the most awesome, I mean fucking awesome, group of men and women I had ever met. They lived in a world I did not even know about, I thought I did but I was so wrong.

    Power, controlled and laser accurate. Six people, coordinated, tight, it is a joy to be with them. We save lives and we kick ass, it does not suck.

    But they kept calling me swinger.

    One day it just hit me wrong, I did not care if it was a test, I did not care why they would not tell me. I grew to 40 and slammed both fists down on either side of one of my teammates.

    "Tell me why the fuck you guys call me that!" I roared.

    My friend was shaken, smiling, nothing wipes that grin off his face, but shaken.

    "Because my tall friend, in all the history of the world, no one has ever swung as big a dick as you."

    I laughed, I shrunk down and laughed until I cried.

    The name Atlas was chosen for me, but I like it. I am no god, but I do my best.



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