1) Prologue: A Calm Morning (Condensed)

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1) Prologue: A Calm Morning (Condensed) Empty 1) Prologue: A Calm Morning (Condensed)

Post  Akvo on Mon Jan 16, 2012 3:39 pm

Oklahoma City
The NSS (National Superhero Society) Station 7
Dormitory Room 419 - Epoch's Quarters 9:57am

"Good morning, Oklahoma City! It's a few minutes before ten and time again for local news. This morning the local Spatula City was robbed..."

Epoch rapidly sits up in bed. "Shit! I slept through Art History again." He slowly slides out of the bed and places his feet on the cool floor. Within a few minutes he is dressed, in the usual blue t-shirt with black cargo pants. He paces to his desk and leans over to slip his messenger bag over his shoulder and looks down at his bed. His body starts glowing with a thin white outline. Before he even takes a breath he is gone.

It's like flying rapidly through water. Or at least that's how he would try explain it when he time traveled. Now, Epoch stood over his bed, exactly where he was before, though now he was watching himself sleep.

"It's seven-thirty and time again for our morning launch," speaks the radio alarm as it turns on.

Epoch whispers gently, "Sleep well, buddy," as he exists the room and heads through softly lit corridor into an open court yard. A few yards later he turns to the left and walks a few more feet to a wooden door labeled "History".

"Early again, Darren," An elderly looking man greet's Epoch as he walks in, "Glad to see you this morning, please sit down, I was just about to grab some coffee," The old man says with a stretched grin, as he paces to the back of the room.

Seven-forty-five classes with Professor Quantum, a retired hero with immense knowledge, usually smelled of freshly made coffee. The professor pours his mug with a steaming brew as Epoch took a seat, smiling slyly with the mischievous use of his skills.

Meanwhile in Arlington, Texas....

A young man in a brown jacket strolls down the street. He pulls out a couple of cigarettes from an ashtray in front of a gas station. He walks down an the next alley.

"Hey man, got a light?" he asks a hobo.

The hobo proffers a couple of matches. "Appreciate it." he says as he gives him a couple of greasy bills.

He lights up one of the cigarettes, "Ugh, menthol...." He puts the cigarette out and coughs. He walks a little further down the alley and waits. A dozen or so people pass by, only a few notice him. An older lady shuffles past the opening and he reacts, stealing her purse and dashing away.

"Forty fucking dollars are you kidding me?" the young man in the brown jacket swore. He turned the corner, choking down another secondhand cigarette, and left the purse in the alley.

"She didn't even have any decent candy.... I'm going to have to skip town, someone's going to catch me sooner or later. Maybe I'll try my luck in the Panhandle State." He put out his last cigarette and stepped onto the Greyhound bus.

"That's $51.04 for one way to Oklahoma City." said the bus attendant.

"Look man I only have forty dollars... can we work something out?" the young man implored.

The bus attendant noticed the hole in his jeans and his slightly oily hair and considers for a moment.


Simultaneously in a warehouse in the South Dakota Badlands, a lone figure stands in the center of group of monitors grinning to himself. The humming computers, the bubbling flasks of chemicals and the dull set tones the machinery going off were music to his ears.

“The containment fields are now 77% completion sir.” A voice rang out from the ceiling.

“Who needs Saturday morning cartoons, MWAHAHAHAHAHA….. WHERES MY FUCKING COFFEE!”

(We return to the story of Akvo)

"Look kid, that will get you as far as Lawton" the attendant said.

"Thanks man" he said as he took a seat towards the middle.

"What's your name kid?" the driver asked.

"Akvo," he said.

"Is that Mexican or something?" the driver inquired.

"Or something," said Akvo as he rested his head on the bus window "See you when we get to Lawton."

Oklahoma City
The NSS (National Superhero Society) Station 7
Dormitory Room 424 - Changeling's Quarters 3:27am

Changeling's door creaks open. A tired and battered changeling stumbles through the door. He tosses his keys to the floor and slams the door, bolting its several locks.

He gets to the living room before he collapses. He lays there for a minute... trying to take in what exactly occurred this night. Visions of gunfire yelling and explosions fill his mind. And then those headlights... well that's something to check off the list, getting hit by a car. Definitely gonna feel that in the morning...

He manages to push himself off the ground once again, and makes it to his bedroom throwing off his costume and passing out in a moment.

9:00am The alarm goes off.

Changeling sits up in bed, feeling sore but not terrible from last nights festivities. He takes a moment before standing up.

His stomach growls fiercely...

Changeling detects the smell breakfast from John's Diner down the street. Plates of bacon and eggs appear in his mind. He packs his bag and runs out the door.

Time to get some food in me...

As I stepped onto the curb outside John's diner with a full stomach I heard some one yelling around the corner. I ran to the corner and saw a shifty looking man holding a knife to a young woman, screaming in her face, "Gimme all your money bitch! I will gut you like a whore!"

I reached into my bag... holding the cool metal mask in my hand. "Excuse me, is there a problem here?" He turned at looked at me, a not all too intimidating young man.

"What tha fuck is you gonna do about it?"

"Something that will make you regret that remark in a few minutes."

I placed the metal mask to my face and felt a coolness fill my mind. I lifted the man off his feet and he began shouting expletives.


"Don't remind me..." I smashed his head into the wall, knocking him unconscious. I looked to the woman, wide-eyed and surely scared. I told her I was a hero, and to call me...

The Changeling.


Oklahoma City
The NSS (National Superhero Society) Station 7
History Room

"Well, we're a little over time today, but what can I say, Leonardo was a pretty amazing man," Professor Quantum concluded, "I'll see you all next week."

Epoch stands and tucks his very large book into his bag, then slips it over his shoulder. As he proceeds to the door, he stops by Quantum, "So our reports are due, complete, on Tuesday next week?"

Quantum grins, "Of course, of course, Darren," He says, leading Epoch to the door patting him on the back, "Oh, and don't forget, no jumping back to Italy or Paris to interview the man, the other students can't get first hand information like that."

Epoch scoffs gently and steps out through the corridor, and into the courtyard. His stomach growls slightly as he decides it's time to find something for breakfast.


Time: 9:18
Location: A high tech warehouse in the South Dakota Badlands

“There is an energy surge in the power grid.”

“Well, fix it; I am in the middle of something here.” His hands covered in the blood of what appears to be a failed experiment. “GOD DAMN IT, THIS IS MAKING ME CRAZY!!!” as he holds up the creature’s brain and licks it.

“Sir the power conduit in this sector is about to explo…”

10 minutes later

“Power restored, sir how did you manage to dodge the flying debris?”



Oklahoma City
Outside John's Diner 9:19am

Epoch opens one of the glass doors in the small diner. As he walks in he catches eye contact with Changeling, who is already sitting at a corner table, in the diner. The Table is small and round and tucked away in a cozy little area. Epoch didn't mind it though, this seemed to be the usual style of Changeling. Many times, Changeling had said that he would rather keep to himself.

Making his way to the table, Epoch crosses paths with a waitress, "Anything for you sir?" She asks as he proceeds to sit down.

"I'll have an espresso and I'll take a menu, too," Epoch replies calmly.

"Bring it right over," she replies as she heads behind the bar.

Epoch sits quietly with changeling, as Changeling chews on his food. The waitress returns with a small cup and a menu. Epoch looks at it briefly, knowing he could have just as easily ordered without one, "I'll have two pancakes, two eggs, over-easy, with bacon."

The waitress takes the order and leaves again.

Changeling finishes his meal and says, "Well, I better get going, see you around, Epoch," as he stands up and heads to the counter to wait behind and old couple and pay.

Reaching into his bag, Epoch pulls out the huge art history book and opens it to one of his bookmarks. "Gah, it'd be a lot easier to just go meet the guy," he mutters as he waits for his food to arrive.


Oklahoma City
First National Center Building
10:53 AM

As I let my feet dangle over the drop my thoughts drifted to a familiar topic... Jennifer. The day she died, the day I killed her...was coming up soon, less than a week even.

Every year the pain returns in full force, every year I regret opening that chest with every molecule in my body.

Maybe this year things will be different, maybe this year I can prove myself.

Maybe, I can make her death mean something.

As thoughts of Jennifer flow through changelings mind tears flow down his face. The cool howling wind, his only company hundreds of feet above the ground.

He stares out over the city, mourning his terrible mistake.

Dr. Takeshi's Experimental Lab
Somewhere in Wichita, Kansas
9:32 AM

Dr. Takeshi approached the operating table in the middle of the room, a grim expression on his face, syringe in hand. As soon as the young man strapped to the table awoke, his eyes burst open and a look of terror poured over his face,"Wh, Where the hell am I...and who are you?" Takeshi spoke," where you are matters not....and well, who I am won't matter in a few moments anyways, now just hold still, this will only hurt a bit." Takeshi jabbed the syringe into the mans fore arm, causing his eyes to dilate, he then preceded to gaze into the young mans wide eyes, suddenly," OH GOD!! WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING TO ME, MY INSIDES.... THEY’RE BURNING, DAMMIT, WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING TO ME YOU FUCKING FREAK!?" Takeshi quickly reacted to the sound the door buzzer, putting the young mans sensory assault to a hasty pause," Dammit who the hell would be here at this time?" Walking over to a large steel door looking back at his victim," Into the freezer with you, at least for now..".

Takeshi opened the door to a tall man in in uniform," Dr. Takeshi?" Takeshi replied," Yes.. What do you need officer?" The officer replied in a serious tone," It has come to the Wichita Police Department that you are a person of interest in the disappearance of Thane Mattern three days ago." Suddenly, images of the night three days previous vividly filled Takeshi's mind...

(Three days previous: 11:36)

The young man walked out of the bar and into the alley to have a smoke, it had been a long night of drinking away his worries. As he smoked his cigarette, a shady figure from behind jabbed a syringe into his neck. The figure slowly lowered the man to the ground..." Yes, you will be a fine subject indeed..")

(Current time)
"I think you are mistaken with a different person officer, now if you will, kindly leave me to my...experiments." The officer replied, his hand on his hand cuffs now," Sir, you can either cooperate or we can make this difficult." Suddenly, Takeshi glared into the officer's eyes... The officer's body tensed up as he suddenly fell you his knees."It, it feels like my body is encased in...ice.....who, the hell are you?" Takeshi replied," Me? I am Twisted Fate.... and it's to the freezer for you."

As Takeshi dragged the officer’s stiff body into the lab, he got a glance a man with a look of shock on his face running off. Takeshi knew that he needed to leave... and fast.


In a bus on the way to Oklahoma
The bus comes to a stop and Akvo jars.

“Huh, what’s going on?” he asks straightening his coat.

“I don’t know, the Texas Highway Patrol is trying to get me to pull over. I was going five under what could they possibly want? Who are you? You ain’t a murderer or something?” the bus attendant looked scared as he pulled over.

“Or something,” he said as he zipped up his coat and busted out a window to escape.

Oklahoma City
John's Diner

"Would you like more water, sir?" Asks the waitress, for the fourth time.

"No thanks, I should probably get going," Epoch had been sitting at the corner table in John's Diner for almost two hours now, trying to force his nose to stay in that art history book. Sure, Leonardo was an amazing man, but Epoch had something else on his mind.

As he gathered his things, he paced his way to the counter where the host, John, the owner himself was taking orders and running the till at the bar.

"How was everything?" John asked in a scruffy voice.

"Good, everything was good," Epoch replied pulling out a twenty dollar bill as the till rang up $12.81. John muttered the change to himself as Epoch held up his hand, "Keep the change, a tip for all the water."

Epoch and John bid each other farewell and Epoch began his three block stroll, back to station. His mind struggled to think about the paper he had to write over the coming weekend, however he couldn't get his mind off of something else. At noon, Epoch was scheduled for a lunch meeting with Professor Quantum, who had assigned himself one of Epoch's mentors. Today, after lunch Epoch would finally get his promised training in teleportation.


Bus stopped in Texas

One of the four highway patrolmen hears Akvo breaking out a window and goes around the bus to meet him.

"Shit, shit shit. This isn't supposed to happen." Akvo mumbles to himself as he attempts to create an ice shield to cover the window.

The patrolmen approaches the window, while one covers the emergency exit, and the other two cover the bus door.

"Shit, shit, shit." Akvo swore. He hadn’t been able to make the ice covering for the window.

"Come on out nice and slow. You're not in that much trouble." said the patrolmen by the window.

"I'm not getting a criminal record man. Sorry I've got to do this..." said Akvo said before throwing his hands out at the patrolmen.

Nothing happens.

"You almost had me there kid, nice try. Come on out." the patrolmen says.

"I'm not going with you guys." retorts Akvo as he head to the back of the bus.

The two patrolmen guarding the front door come in and usher out the bus driver. Akvo has his back pinned to the end of the bus as the four patrolmen come after him two by two.

"You don't want to mess with me!" shouts Akvo.

"Yeah we saw that with the arm thing," said the officer "It's not a big deal kid a purse snatching is just going to get your parents involved."

"Get away from me!" Akvo shouts again as he raises his arms


Lincoln, Nebraska
First State Bank
3:30 pm

*walks into bank in casual outfit and approaches the counter*

The man behind the counter greets me smiling, "Hello and welcome, how can i help you?"

"Hello, I'm here to make a withdrawal. My name is Ike. And if you don't mind me asking what’s your name?", I smile at my dimwitted victim.

"Oh, its Charles" holds out his shiny name tag on his chest, "Charles Birmingham."

"A very professional name. Now then," focuses on the counterman.
"Charles take 25 dollars from each account, don't take record of it, and hand over the money without anyone noticing."

Charles goes into a trance state and follows the command. *takes money and stows it away in side bag*
"And Charles.........you don't know who I am and I was never here."

*Walks out with $1,275 smiling slyly* "Almost too easy"


Back on the bus in Texas

The young man in the brown jacket is panting heavily and staring at his hands he says, "Shit, shit, shit... I've never killed anyone before.... I knew these powers were only bad news."

Akvo hops out of the broken window and starts heading northeast walking at a quick pace.

"They're going to find me. I killed four cops. They're going to find me. Shit! Should I go back and kill the bus driver? I don't want to kill more people, but he's going to tell everyone what happened. What do I do...." Akvo mutters to himself.


Oklahoma City
NSS Station 7
Outdoor Training Ground

"I hope you had plenty to eat, Darren, because this time we actually try for a successful Teleport," Professor Quantum says, leading Epoch through the door to the training ground.

"I think I got plenty, Professor," Epoch comments, stretching his neck and eyeing the field. The field, shaped as a twenty-five yard diameter circle, was used for parts of Epoch's primary training with the NSS. The ground was grassy, and well kept, with two sandy circles, one at the north and one at the south end. It was often used for small combat scenarios, until today.

"All right, Darren, you go stand in the south circle," Quantum began, "I will remain here, however, your goal is to move yourself through space, to the north circle. Remember, this does not change your time, but your position. Imagine yourself there, imagine yourself sliding through the air. In one full breath, breathe in where you are, then teleport and breathe out where you will be."

Epoch took in his breath deeply and closed his eyes. He felt a great strain on himself, knowing that he was finally being tested. His final hope was just a little success, even a few feet. "Something, anything!" he thought as he breathed in deeply.

Immediately, Epoch glows again, with a thin white outline. He feels his breath halt, for what seemed like an eternity. It was much like flying rapidly through a space without air.

Professor Quantum was in awe as the white outline appeared and started smiling as Epoch disappeared and within an instant, appeared in the center on the north circle.

Epoch breathed out heavily and opened his eyes. “I did it, I can't believe I did it”, he was astounded with himself. "I did it, Professor, can you belie-" he began to say, spinning around to face Quantum, who was standing near the door to the west.

"Don't move, Darren!" Quantum spat sternly with a big smile, "Now the task is to put yourself back, without moving an inch."

Epoch stiffened up with a nervous smile, agreeing with Quantum. He didn't know if he was ready to do it again, perhaps he was too excited.

"Just like before, Darren," Quantum started, "Imagine yourself there, in the south circle. Put yourself there, all in one breath. Now, Darren, concentrate."

Epoch nodded and closed his eyes. He thought about where he was before. He just had to put himself back there again. Back into that south circle. Standing there. In the south circle. Epoch drew his breath in.


Dr. Takeshi's experimental lab
10:13 AM

Takeshi was now in a mad rush to haul the officer's body into the containment freezer and get out. As he laid the officer down onto the cold concrete floor of the freezer, the officer managed to utter a few last words," You...won't..get away...with...." before he could finish, Takeshi shot a lethal injection of cyanide into the mans neck..."I do believe I will get away with this, now… have a nice....nap, heh heh heh."

As Takeshi closed the freezer door he could hear the faint sound of sirens growing closer and closer, frantically he rushed to gather a select few paper's documenting his research of his hypnotic effects on his various unfortunate victims. The sounds of the sirens was getting louder with every second," Shit! the problems I have to deal with!" Takeshi muttered to himself as he approached his jet black BMW. Takeshi flung the door open, tossed his papers to the passengers side seat and started the car up, spending no extra time pulling out of the garage.

As he drove through the tight alley leading from his lab to the main road, he could see the lights of the police car siren's pulling up to his lab. It didn't seem as though he was spotted as he pulled on to the main road though. As Takeshi drove down the road and out of town he punched in coordinates on his GPS, Wolf Point, Montana.


Vermillion, SD
USD (University of South Dakota)
11:20 AM

Mara is sitting in the fairly empty Taco Johns, a red scarf wrapped warmly around her neck, providing a lot more warmth than her long denim jacket.

She sighs shortly, taking another bite of a steaming cheesy chicken burrito. The action is followed by her hand reaching for two or so potato oles which are thrown casually into her mouth.

"It's not as if there's anyone around to see me..." Mara thinks, eating none too gracefully. The cheese hanging from her lip does cause some annoyance though, and her hand flies to the napkins. The cheese disappears.

The familiar cold winds of South Dakota greet her kindly, the warm sun not affecting her almost bored expression. At least her eyes are somewhat alive as she briskly walks towards campus, her scarf playing in the breeze.

She passes a few people on the way, but most students are in class.
"Daytime is boring." says the dark-haired girl, cracking her neck as she approaches a large brick building. "It's too bad the psychology teacher here is a tard, otherwise I'd probably be in class."

She considers peeking into the room it takes place in, as there is probably some student who fell asleep during the lecture. After all, the dream world is so much more interesting to participate in.

Deciding that she would rather not be spotted by the rolly-polly Psychology professor, Mara swings herself around in a 180 degree-like fashion, and heads out of the confinements of the building to continue her walk. After all, it is a beautiful day.


Location: Warehouse in the Badlands

Time: 1:02 PM

“The cleaning of sector 23 is finished, moving on to restoration.”

“Thank you Steve, now if you would excuse me I have pressing work to do now.”

Dr. Weird stepped through a dark door way with bold letters reading Genetics Lab. He walked up to the command module and with a few key strokes and the computers roar to life and the lights turn on. Three forms strapped to tables behind the pain of glass twitch as the light hits the remnants of their eyes. “IT BEGINS!!!” Dr. Weird shouts as he walks into the room carrying a syringe full of a glowing substance.

“Now commencing genetics test #247, muscle enhancement attempt # 16.” He jabs the syringe into the second subject. A death scream escaped from the weakened lips of the individual and the compound began take affect inside their body. The pain was immense, if they weren’t strapped to the table they would be attempting to peel off their skin. A mischievous ear-to-ear grin appeared on his face as he basked in the howls of the individual before him.

The other two week from all that has been done to them shuddered in fear as all they could do was lie there and listen knowing all too well that they are next. Dr. Weird moves over to the one furthest from the door unveiling another syringe from within his coat and sticks it in their right shoulder drawing 50 ml of blood. It was an off color and he smiled as he held it up to the light, it glistened with a disturbing glow that made him all the happier. “You show some promise #82, much promise indeed, MWAHAHAHAHA.” Laughter was the last thing they heard as he walked out and turned off the lights.

“What do have there sir?”


Oklahoma City
NSS Station 7

"Sorry I didn't pull off the second teleportation, Professor Quantum," Epoch commented as the two passed through the corridors of the academy.

Quantum chuckled slightly, "Ah, Darren," he said stopping before am intersecting hallway, "You'll improve it always takes time, you should be proud of your progress; i know I am."

Epoch tried to smile.

"This is it for me though, I have some more physics homework to grade before tomorrow morning, I will see you next week, Darren, good luck, and practice your breathing," Professor Quantum commented as he began his way down the intersecting hallway.

"Will do," Epoch replied as he began the walk to the courtyard.

Quantum threw a hand up as he walked, "And don't forget the art report!"

Epoch stopped slightly and sighed, it was a lot of work and all he wanted to do was master teleporting.


A tiny green rectangle in the distance grows larger as the young man in the brown coat advances toward it. The young man can make out the town name "Lawton" as he reaches in his pocket.

"Fuck, I'm out of cigarettes" he sighs. He makes it into the city limits shaking, not for having killed four men, but for his angry nic fit. He finds himself in a Shell Station. He reaches over the counter and grabs a couple of Camel Wides

Akvo kills the man with his icicle firing ability. After stealing the cigarettes he exits the gas station.

Little does he know that the security cameras caught the entire ordeal.


12:37 PM

Changeling sits atop the building... sulking... something he often did. Especially now that her death was nearing... but enough wallowing in pity. Changeling stood up, the wind blowing his hair about.

Barely audible due to the intense wind he mumbled to himself, "Time to prove yourself, time to fly."

He tensed up his legs and leaped forth from the spire atop the building narrowing missing the edge, the winds howl was now an almost unbearable whistle. He felt for the familiar metal mask, grasp it and fit it snugly to his face and willed his descent to slow.

He leapt.

The ground was coming up... fast. And he was not slowing down.


Changeling crashed into the ground with a thunderous boom and rolled forward before collapsing onto the pavement.

He lay there a moment... "Owwwwwww..." hardly able to speak after having the breath knocked out of him.

One man offered him a hand, Changeling reached out, accepting the help. After all he had just 'fallen' over 500 feet and survived... Maybe try somewhere a little less high next time...

He stood up and walked back to his apartment at the NSS gazing back at the building he had just jumped from... shaking his head in disappointment.

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