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Gentle Readers ...

I can't count the number of times I've been called that.

I've said it many times; Superheroes are our modern myths, the legends of our times. They, like their counterparts of old, represent the best intentions of our society. To understand them is to understand what we wish we were and what we strive for, both as communities and as individuals. They show us how to use power selflessly, how to face danger and evil relentlessly, and how to overcome ourselves courageously.

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Strange Talents

Manning First Line's office in the Orbital Defense System was always such a drag. The international crew was always bickering, and most of them didn't trust the superheroic presence in their midst overly much, even though the ODS existed only thanks to Protanya, Ten Kelvin, Cydriver, and others. The teleporter wouldn't even turn on without approval from the UN headquarters elsewhere on the same ship.

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Mecha Knight Introduction

Game Master: You and your brother are squires to an
aging Mecha Knight named Sir Thomas. You live in a village in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, it what was called "california" long, long ago. It's a small town, but you make a living. The nearby river provides water for the small farm, and the walls made under Sir Thomas' direction have dissuaded bandits and roving raiders. You and your brother, Arcen, lost your parents long ago and wandered here as boys. Sir Thomas took you under his wing and

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Debating Vampires

“So,” said McDermott, turning down the radio a bit. “Vampires; evil or misunderstood?”

Julian Bennet kept his eyes on the dark, winding road, but pondered the question. It was going to be a long drive – best to keep the mind occupied. “In general or by definition?”

“By definition.”

“I guess that depends on who's writing them – what sort of reason or source for them existing the author uses.”

“Don't dodge the question, Bennet.”

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To Save a Stranger

She was lovely.

Every so often, Mindracer could see the way she imagined Tempo could see when he slipped into a faster timestream - with the world moving in slow motion around her as she pushed the limits of her super-fast body. She was grateful for those moments, and more than a little jealous of him - and of White Blur, whose mind apparently sped up to match the speed he was at.

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Conflict of Interest

The field before him was deceptively empty. Wind blew in the tall, wild grain hiding the concrete bunkers and sealed silo-openings that Patrick Dawnflight knew were there. Above him the clouds were sparse and stringy, but off to his left a fog was resting on the hills to the east. The way the wind blew today would tell whether or not that fog came down into the broad valley. He breathed deep, and under the heavy, dry scent of the grass were other smells - gun oil, brass, and the sweat of men under heavy loads.

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Golden Girl

Tingling. Like primal fire. Every inch of her was sparking like a lit fuse. She heard voices muffled by her distance to consciousness, and smelled the scent of hopeful absence she knew was the scent of a hospital. She could tell through still-closed eyelids that the room was dark.

The voices became clearer. It was her father ...

"What are you telling me, doctor? Is she cured or not?"

... talking to Doctor Ogdonovich.

"She is cured, Mr. Cartheson. What I am telling you is that we were unable to supress the side effects as you requested."

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The World's Greatest Swordsman

So this is actually a story about a character in Mystic Frontiers as told by a character in After the Collapse. How is this possible, you ask? He's a Bard of Subterra. They travel the land telling stories of heroism based on worlds created by their founder, all in an effort to bring hope to their shattered world.

So how, you ask, does their founder know anything about the Mystic Frontiers?

That's a story for another day. For now ...

The World's Greatest Swordsman

"I want to hear one about Ifrai."

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Character Origin: Shane

This is another character origin story played out between a game master and a player. It has been editted for content, entertainment value, and to protect the names of the innocent. It is also the first of two parts, as it was much longer than the previous two.

You should know before starting that the Gunslingers are an ancient group of wandering marksmen, specialized in fighting with two-pistols. They are rather obviously inspired by Stephen King's own Gunslinger, Roland. Those books, in fact, inspired the inception of the After the Collapse setting.

GM: "Shane?"