Save Metro City!

Apes...and ATLANTEANS!!
Gorilla on the cover!

Several weeks had passed since the defeat of the Food Court, and the Mariner was in a good mood for once as he sat in the armored car driving down Metro City’s streets. He had had some time to himself, the gallery he sponsored at the Metro City Aquarium, “Treasures of the Deep”, was going along swimmingly, and Ishmael had even booked Bright Man a one-man show in the theatre district at the same day so he wouldn’t show up. All that was left was to transport the most important item in the collection: The Crown of Atlantis, said to confer immense power on the Royal Atlantean who bore it. It was part of a three-part set, along with the Cape of Tides (water control) and the Shark Spear (aaaagh sharks). The Mariner had discovered in some mysterious ruins in the Sargasso Sea and, after some time spent in his vault, he was ready to finally unveil it to the public. He introduced himself to the museum director, along with the Wraith and the Descendant, who would be providing security detail at the event, sealed the Crown in the vault, and departed until the next day.

The event, too, proceeded smoothly, as the Mariner chatted up some of the other major donors to the aquarium. Finally, the time came to open the vault, and the director punched in some numbers in the lock and opened the door…but as soon as she grasped the handle, there was a tremendous boom from inside. The trio immediately kicked open the door, only to discover that someone had smashed through the six-foot-thick wall on the other side, smashed the case, and stolen the Crown. The team immediately jumped through the hole in the wall in hot pursuit, ending up in a warehouse filled with aquarium supplies.

In no time flat, the team found themselves on the business end of several machine guns, wielded by…orangutans??? A hulking figure stepped out of the shadows: A gorilla wearing a domino mask, the Crown perched on its head like a thimble on a coconut. The Wraith knew who they were dealing with: The Schmidt Family of Crime (Since 1939) had sent their best enforcer, the Silverback, to steal the Crown. After some taunting on both sides, the battle began.

The Silverback’s group of assorted primate soldiers was surprisingly effective, corralling all three party members at the entrance of the room with machine gun fire. However, the Mariner fired an electric blast that knocked the Crown off the Silverback’s head, and the Wraith created the illusion that the crown had actually flown out of the window. This brief window of confusion was enough to stop the Silverback, but the minions managed to wound the trio and cause the Wraith to drop the illusion.

The Silverback knocked over a tall piece of shelving filled with boxes in an attempt to escape, but the Wraith used this to his advantage, creating the illusion that boxes were descending on the extras to cause them to freak out and fall off their perches. The Mariner made a mighty leap over the fallen shelf and confronted the Silverback. While his attempt at entangling the ape failed, he fired a lucky lightning shot, severely wounding the Silverback. The crown clattered to the floor.

However, before the Mariner could pick it up, a powerful cannon fired a name through the wall, causing him to duck into cover. The name was that of the person nobody in the party wanted to see: BLÜDDGÜNN!!!!! The wall detonated, revealing the Schmidt Family’s youngest member, a shallow layer of water obscuring his feet but not the tree-trunk sized gun he was somehow holding in his tiny dinosaur hands. Noticing the crown on the floor, he leapt for it at the same time as the Mariner, who managed to kick him away just as a giant flood of water swept him away.

Realizing the water levels were showing no sign of decreasing, the party climbed up a ladder leading to the roof. On the way, the Mariner boasted about his armor knocking out the Wraith back when they were rivals, but the Wraith fired back that if it was such an advanced suit, surely it would be able to work underwater like every other diving suit in the entire world. This fight ceased as they reached the roof to find a hard rain pouring and Metro City beginning to flood.

Out to sea, a whirlpool formed, growing larger and larger. An ornate pillar of water shot up, and a figure advanced imperiously up steps that formed on the pillar’s sides. At this point, the Mariner’s player made a Homestuck joke and was deducted a Hero Point. A “screen” of droplets formed above the mysterious figure as he revealed his identity: He was Apathios, first in line to the throne of Atlantis. He had come to Metro City for two reasons: First, to reclaim the Crown of Atlantis, his rightful inheritance, and second, to flood the city and add it to the holdings of Atlantis.

The team had little time to ponder their next move as the Wraith barely dodged out of the way of a jet of water aimed at his neck. The Descendant noticed a hole in the window of the adjacent planetarium, and the Mariner leapt through it to check. Nobody was there, but he noticed a pouch on the ground. Picking it up, he detected traces of the powder used to convert fish into Atlanteans: In other words, bad news. What he didn’t detect was the mysterious sniper re-entering and shooting off his helmet. Although he couldn’t see who it was, the other two could: It was an archerfish Atlantean, probably from the aquarium. They jumped in through the window, but the sniper (later nicknamed Robin Hood by the team) had already gone through the door.

The Descendant detected water droplets on the floor leading into the domed movie theater, and the team cautiously pushed open the doors. Inside was the biggest surprise of all: A portal pouring a gigantic torrent of water into the column marking the middle of the theater and, presumably, into the street. Suddenly, Atlanteans armed with swords burst from the seats and attacked. Robin Hood shortly after opened fire from behind the movie screen with nerve-wracking accuracy, even managing to pinpoint the Descendant’s location (he was saved by his main energy shield working for once).

The fight continued, and although the Wraith was knocked out by a sniper shot, the Descendant knocked Robin Hood down through the screen and the Mariner defeated him with an electric shot. He was wearing a pendant, presumably the control device; the Mariner stomped on it and the portal closed. However, they were still sitting ducks with the Crown and it needed to be brought to the Lawyer’s time vault in the Financial District, a long ways away. The first battle had been won, but the war was far from over…

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The Secret Ingredient is...THE GLADIATOR!!
Americanized!

With the Berserker defeated, only one member of the Food Court remained. He chose to strike in an incredibly unexpected way: By sending an invitation to a battle to the death to each of the New Legion members. The letter told them to come to the largest TV studio in the city that Friday or he would start slaughtering civilians; it was signed “The Gladiator”. After looking in the book, the Wraith confirmed that the Gladiator was the Platonic representation of showmanship and was weak to the Platonic representation of bland acting.

Bright Man went to SuperCon and got a cosplay skit actor; meanwhile, the Descendant went to a movie memorabilia shop near his apartment to see if there was anything. Unfortunately, the shop had already been visited; a Sixth Sense member had broken into the building and stolen a signed photograph of Keanu Reeves. Even more worrying, they had used a laser beam to open the case; could Camera X have returned?

The team arrived at the studio at the proper time; a stagehand split them into two groups (Descendant/Bright Man and Mariner/Wraith) and they went into the soundstage, which had been converted into two arenas. Announcing them was The Gladiator:

Chairman

The doors across from both duos opened, revealing their opponents. The Mariner and the Wraith were facing the last two members of the Fifth Element, the Mad Phrenologist and Feng Shui; the Wraith became nearly apoplectic with rage and had to be restrained. On the other side appeared the two remaining field agents of The Sixth Sense: A man with a mysterious glowing eye and another with a rad guitar. The former was a mysterious agent known as Second Sight and the other was Soundwave II, an avatar of Ted Nugent formerly known as the Damned Yankee. Before the battle began, however, the Gladiator revealed that there was a secret ingredient to add excitement to the battle: DINOSAURS!!! More doors opened, revealing slavering dionychuses poised to attack. The battle began almost immediately afterward.

The Descendant took aim and fired, but his time wristband began malfunctioning, sending out powerful waves of temporal energy. Through a portal crawled a gigantic white insect: The Clock Roach. It was hungry, and ready to feed on the source of the time energy. While the Descendant grappled with the Roach, the Mariner fought the Mad Phrenologist to a standstill. The Wraith broke the tie by creating three seperate illusions: That Feng Shui had an inauspicious bump on his head, that Feng Shui was injured and ready for the deinonychuses to eat, and that the Mad Phrenologist was just…out of order. It was at this time that the Gladiator set off one of the stage pyrotechnics for effect, causing a gigantic explosion that knocked the Mariner into a wall and defeated the Phrenologist.

The Descendant broke free of the Clock Roach’s pincers and fired a shot at Second Sight, knocking him out. The signed photograph of Keanu Reeves fluttered to the ground. Thinking quickly, Bright Man wrapped the photo around a lemon and fired it at the unsuspecting Gladiator. The shot was true, and the Gladiator quickly found himself out of control of the situation.

Just as suddenly, the roof cracked open, revealing a tempestuous sky. From above rode the one thing the team really, really didn’t want to see…the Headless Sportsman. Before anyone could act, the Sportsman sucked out the Gladiator’s power orb into a basketball, then turned to face the party. They had interfered with the mysterious LN’s plans one too many times and they must be destroyed. However, before he could attack, someone burst through the wall–it was Clubsport, trying to team up with his great-grandfater! After berating him for being an idiot, the Headless Sportsman bedrudgingly let Clubsport join him.

Even more suddenly than before, time itself seemed to halt as a portal of black magic appeared on the podium. Through it stepped the most powerful villain the group had ever seen, the one orchestrating events that could range back to the Wraith’s childhood: *L*ichard *N*ixon. He had an ultimatum: If the team gave him the book, he would stop the Headless Sportsman. For obvious reasons, the team refused, and Nixon gave the command to kill and stepped through the portal once again. Time resumed.

The Sportsman threw an exploding football at the ground, damaging the Mariner’s piston boots and blowing Bright Man into a nearby hospital, where Craig was recovering from his injuries. Craig actually welcomed the intrusion, as he had landed on top of two people attempting a Onceler-themed wedding proposal. From there, Bright Man constructed a makeshift scope and provided covering fire while the other three continued the fight. Meanwhile, Clubsport hucked a bowling ball at the Descendant, who easily deflected it.

In a last-ditch maneuver, the Mariner threw the Wraith at the Sportsman, and for unknown reasons the Sportsman dissipated and departed through the sky after swearing revenge. Clubsport converted his bowling ball to a Quidditch broom and escaped, as the team pondered what would come in the future…

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The Berserker...MAKES PEOPLE FEEL BAD!!
Oddly compelling!

Thanks to the effort of Metro City’s civilians, the damage caused by the Armorer’s attack was repaired after several days. However, life was not completely back to normal, as several eathquakes started disturbing the subway line. The Mariner looked into the damage, but his in-house seismologist, Joseph Sweet, was unable to determine the cause of the seismic activity. Suspecting Food Court activity, he met with the single magician who worked for him. After several show-offy shuffles, the magician determined that one of the Food Court had created a dimensional anomaly deep beneath the earth in preparation for an attack.

The Mariner immediately suited up, contacted the others, and ran into the street, only to find it completely empty. He wandered around the empty blocks until he came to the reason: Someone had cordoned off the area. Suddenly, a man with a camera appeared: He was Ted Realityshowguy, here to film a reality show competition to see who could defeat the Berserker, the latest Food Court member. The other team was the League of Redundancies, a group of superheroes with redundant powers led by the Incomparable Redundo. He gave the four heroes a camera on a headband (quickly given to Bright Man) and they went on their way.

The fastest way to reach the Gladiator was through the subway, so the New Legion hopped on a train and started moving. While the trip seemed normal at first, they noticed that the scenery was looping and the train was picking up speed. Eventually, it smashed through reality like a pane of glass, revealing a fiery landscape dotted with elven fortresses: Hell’s Kitchen. Before anyone could react, soldiers suddenly broke through the windows of the train. One of them…seemed oddly familiar. Craig threw a flash grenade at Bright Man, and the Mariner used the opportunity to throw Bright Man back; he missed, and Bright Man fell out the window.

The fight was fierce, but eventually it was ended with the Wraith tackling Craig out of another window. The Wraith punched Craig in the face, knocking him unconscious, and he fell into one of the fortresses. Both of the heroes were saved from falling to death, Bright Man by the mysterious Hotel California (who opened an extradimensional hotel gate and stopped the fall) and the Wraith by his old partner Tanker (who drove along the railing and caught him). Everyone managed to reach the bottom safely.

Surprisingly for this sort of plot, the League was perfectly willing to help the New Legion; they realized that the fey lord was not the one they were looking for. They had been cursed by The Neckbeard (of the Court of Law) into having super ridiculous powers and were looking for payback. As a token of good will, they gave the team the item diametrically opposed to the Berserker’s powers: The Turborub 5000, a massage chair that relaxes all five senses and includes a video of Morgan Freeman reading bedtime stories.

The team attracted the attention of the Berserker by making the worst dish they could possibly think of in one of the facility kitchens. They were transported into his chamber, where he was busy rating other dishes 0. As soon as the New Legion’s dish arrived, he was incensed and called in minions to begin the battle. He began with a show of intimidation, nearly causing the Wraith to die from a heart attack if it wasn’t for his determination to save his orphans.

The battle raged on, expendable minion after expendable minion getting flung aside like rice at a wedding, until the Descendant fired off a shot that ricocheted off the wall and damaged a support. The League of Redundancies took the opportunity to crash through the ceiling and crush the Berserker, who for the first time, gave something a perfect score: His own death. He exploded, leaving his power core in the wreckage.

The New Legion and the League parted on friendly terms, the League using the dimensional anomaly to continue to search for the Neckbeard. Now only one Food Court member remained…

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Home Cooking with...THE ARMORER!
Recipes in the back! (Not like you'll want to cook with them, though!)

Immediately after the defeat of the Hunter, the party discovered a glowing orb in his remains. Upon further investigation, they found that the book had four holes in the back cover, the perfect size to put in the orb. The Wraith inserted the orb, and the book glowed for a few seconds, then returned to normal. The Mariner brought the book back to IA headquarters, where a team of scientists (operating out of Science Basement A) found that it was a power source that granted its power to elves and other fey with LARP names.

The team exited, still confused about where to go. However, they noticed something odd. The light was oddly overcast, but there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. Could it be an eclipse? Or could it be the GIGANTIC FLYING FORTRESS POURING BOILING OIL ON THE CITY OH MY GOD OH MY GOD WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE AHHHHHHHH!

The party quickly ran to the Mariner’s Secret Airplane Hangar (named after famous airplane pilot Frederic M. Secret, it was pretty visible from the street) and took off in the Puffin. Despite apprehensions, the Mariner recognized that Bright Man was the most adept pilot of them all and let him fly the plane. As the team approached the fortress, they were suddenly set upon by elves in jetpacks. Thinking quickly, the Wraith conjured two identical Puffins, confusing the soldiers. Thanks to some deft shooting, the party managed to crash all of the soldiers (and ruin a treatise on Teen Wolf), landing inside the fortress.

The party soon discovered something: One of the missing Killer Queen rockets had somehow ended up inside the fortress. As they walked down the corridors of the fortress, the Wraith looked up information in the book: The Hunter almost always appeared with the Armorer, of the Autumn Court. Th e Armorer was the Platonic ideal of Bounty, and its weakness was Scarcity. While they attempted to solve this riddle, the party found themselves in a large kitchen, filled with unconscious and dead elves.

Approaching the final elf on the verge of consciousness, Bright Man managed to coerce him to cook some fudge for him, but he collapsed after providing information: Two assailants had forced their way into the fortress ahead of them. Based on the pressure marks on the walls, one of them had the same powers as Radio Gaga. But he was trapped in Mars?, wasn’t he?

The party ran up a flight of stairs (the Descendant carrying one of the elf corpses) and into a garden. But upon closer inspection, this was no ordinary garden: The trees were made of bacon and a stream of white gravy flowed along a riverbank lined with biscuits. This discovery was interrupted by the arrival of two of the Sixth Sense members, along with a multitude of minions. One was the avatar of both Axl Rose and Slash–their souls had combined when two gang leaders simultaneously killed each other. The other lifted his helmet, and who would it turn out to be but Grover Keynes! He had apparently found religion in prison and turned to the power of Peter Gabriel, once again referring to himself as the Invisible Touch.

The ensuing battle was short but vicious, as the Descendant threw the dead elf at minions and Bright Man blasted the Invisible Touch across the garden and into a tower across the way. The battle completed, the party ran into the tower, where the Invisible Touch, with his last breath of consciousness (he’s not dead guys, this is a superhero campaign, duuuuuuuh) gave them a baggie of salad, prepared by the avatar of Bon Iver for the mysterious LN. He promised that this would be the counter for the Armorer.

As soon as he succumbed to sleep, a face flashed on monitors around the tower. It looked like this would be their opponent:

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The Armorer crashed through the ceiling in her Butterbot Mk. VII, a giant robot made entirely out of butter. Almost as suddenly, her second-in-command, the Knight of the Golden Corral, entered and summoned minions made out of pizza, calzones, and a big pile of mush in a huge fgreaking bowl to attack the party.

The Armorer was a difficult opponent. Her robot shot flaming oil in a large radius around the party, lighting almost everyone on fire. While three of the party members fought her, Bright Man bounced over the golems to fight the Knight. However, he was proving more durable than he appeared, absorbing a lot of the shots using his extradimensional gut.

After fighting for a while, the Descendent tried to do what he did best: Throwing a dead elf. The elf, now covered with flaming oil, lodged in the Butterbot Mk. VII’s back, melting a hole. Thinking quickly, the Wraith jumped on the Butterbot’s fist, climbed onto the back, and threw salad in it. The Armorer lost her powers: “My powers, y’all!!!”

However, the battle was not over. The Knight withdrew his lesser minions and summoned the most powerful beast in his belly: The Steak Dragon, which immediately breathed a cone of gravy at Bright Man, who barely survived by eating it. The dragon picked up the Mariner and the Wraith and smashed through the tower. The two looked down at the city skyline, far below, as the Mariner used his powers of biology to deduce that they were likely about to be dropped. With the Descendant and Bright Man far away, this looked like the end.

Suddenly, the sky split in two as a figure, handsomely dressed in a handsome tuxedo, descended from above. This was Freddie Mercury himself–not Bohemian Rhapsody, but the actual Freddie–and he informed the Wraith that he still had work to do. He gave the dragon a mighty blow with his mic stand, and the two found themselves back on the fortress, watching the dragon shower shreds of steak on Metro City.

The Mariner brought the Armorer, now depowered, back to IA in an attempt to get information on the other two Food Court members; however, their chat was interrupted by a Sixth Sense sniper, who shot the Armorer, who exploded into a pile of autumn leaves. The sniper was quickly disposed of, and the Mariner inspected the second power source with some trepidation. There were two members left, and who knew when they would strike…

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The Wyld Hunt...BEGINS!
Can the New Legion survive the onslaught of the Food Court?

Several weeks had passed since the defeat of the Chessmaster. The owner of a local dojo, known to the public as the Streetest Fighter, had assumed Volsky’s position as the leader of SuperCon, and the convention began to rein itself in. Mayor Mike Haggar publicly congratulated the team on its achievement. Additionally, the Mariner agreed to build a safehouse in the Industrial Aquatics headquarters to house the Wraith’s orphans, keeping them safe for the time being.

This peace was disturbed when Jonah Lethbridge recieved a phone call from the head of the bank–a new artifact had appeared in The Lawyer’s time vault. Going there as fast as he could, the Mariner was surprised to find an ancient leather-bound tome called Classese ande Professionse ofe thee Faerie Kingdome ande Traditiones Therewithe (Fore Dunderheades). Flipping through his book on the way back to Industrial Aquatics, it appeared to simply be a list of the different knights of the Feygrove, a dimension of elves parallel to our own.

However, reading time soon ended as a bugle call blasted through the clouds, carrying with it a supernatural announcement that the 150th Wyld Hunt had begun. Flipping through the book, the Mariner found that every hundred years, the Feygrove sent raiding parties of four (one from the Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring Courts) into other dimensions, and whoever could bring back the strongest catch would become rulers of the realm. The other members of the New Legion, witness to the announcement as well, appeared at Industrial Aquatics and spent the day preparing for the invasion.

The next day, the Wraith recieved a phone call from a professor at Metro University’s Rad Studies Department. Although the caller was anonymous, he mentioned that there was something occuring that he needed the team’s discreet help on. Fearing a trap, the New Legion debated whether to go or not, but they eventually decided to.

In the Rad Studies Department, they were greeted by Dr. Jeff Hellman, the professor who had placed the phone call. He led the team into a monitoring room at the top of the building, where he showed an unbelievable reading of 7 kilohawks (equal to rougly 700,000 doritojoules of RADiation) emanating from something in the nearby Mall of Metro City. However, Dr. Hellman was unable to figure out what it was because supers had suddenly begun fighting there. He gave them a RADometer to allow them to detect where the readings were coming from at the source.

Fast as they could, the team went to the Mall of Metro City. The first thing the group noticed was a large glowing portal that appeared to be the source of the RAD energy; however, a more pressing concern was the two groups fighting to the death. The first was assorted hippies under the banner of the Five Elements, led by Fairy House. The second was a mysterious group in black and green. Two members stood out in particular: One was surrounded by dozens of lit, floating scented candles, and the other was wearing a margarita machine on his back. As the latter revealed later, they were named Fifty Scent and Taste Test, and they were members of the Sixth Sense, a group of repurposed criminals sent on missions by the federal government. The Wraith noticed that a pair of overalls was lying on an umbrella in the food court; The Mariner ran the RADometer on it and recieved a negative reading.

It was then that the Wraith remembered a portion of the book: Faerie knights drew their powers from the Platonic embodiment of a concept. If the overalls were the antithesis of RAD, then that meant they countered the incoming knight’s powers. However, by the time he figured this out Faerie House had grabbed the overalls and Puncture had attacked the party from the shadows.

The ensuing battle was surprisingly short, and the Mariner managed to restrain Fairy House and grab the overalls. However, the victory was cut short when a red sports car burst from the portal, accompanied by two elves on motorcycles, and did a million donuts. A figure emerged from the car:

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As soon as he appeared, the Hunter attacked. Thinking quickly, the Mariner leapt on top of the car and threw the overalls at him, but the Hunter merely scoffed, saying that since overalls were once cool in the early 90s, they were not the Platonic opposite of the Rad. The only thing that could defeat him was a power so stupid that history rewrote itself to minimize its accomplishments. He then shot flaming pizzas at the party, heavily injuring Bright Man.

Thinking quickly, the Descendant fired a shot into the car’s window, mortally wounding the Hunter and causing him to fall out onto Bright Man. His powers disappeared and he exploded into a snowdrift (his frosted hair signified him as a member of the Winter Court). The battle over, the party steeled themselves for the next three members of the Food Court…

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The Challenge of...THE CHESSMASTER!
He can see five moves ahead! Can he possibly be beaten?

The Wraith and the Descendant fell several stories into a pile of foam blocks. Although they purused the fleeing Chessmaster, he ran into the dealers’ hall of SuperCon and disappeared into the crowd. As they looked around for him, the Wraith suddenly felt that they were being pursued. Out of nowhere, the Silver Fox appeared and narrowly missed slicing the Descendant’s face open. The battle had begun.

Meanwhile, the Mariner and Bright Man used Weeaboo Man’s own Japanese snacks in order to bribe him out of information. He claimed that there was an especially fast zeppelin under construction, but only Lady Steampunk had the key. The dynamic duo tracked down Lady Steampunk in the food court and the Mariner persuaded her to show him the workshop. However, Lady Steampunk saw through his ruse and fired a flare gun that called Captain Maximum to the scene.

The combat quickly escalated as the Fox called some minions and Lady Steampunk summoned her robots–one of them was partially made of the yogurt cart that had claimed Dominion’s stunning good looks. As Bright Man dealt with the robots, the Mariner attempted to steal the Red Baron, the handsome prototype. After accidentally crashing into an exploding zeppelin, Captain Maximum regained his composure and punched Bright Man into the Subway across the street.

The Silver Fox’s minions managed to take down the Wraith, but the battle was interrupted when the Mariner crashed the Red Baron into the dealers’ hall and reclaimed the duo. As they departed, the New Legion noticed the Chessmaster attempting to escape in a limousine, accompanied by Weeaboo-Man. WM transformed himself into the Mariner, but made a mistake of colossal proportions when he cut the roof off the limo in order to attack the zeppelin more easily. Bright Man blinded the limo driver, and the car smashed into the side. Bereft of options, the Chessmaster finally surrendered.

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The Wubbulous World of...WEEABOO MAN!
Weirdos in a Weird Land!

As the unconscious bodies of the New Legion were loaded onto the Supercon zeppelin, Timebeard broke off combat with the Descendant and reboarded his ship, which cloaked and sailed away. The Descendant snuck aboard using his powers of invisibility along with Key Grip, and after about fiteen minutes the ship landed at the top of SuperCon. The Mariner was stripped of his suit, the Wraith’s guns were removed, and Bright Man’s light bulb was screwed off his helmet, and the three were placed in holding cells. However, the Descendant waited for the shift to change and hacked the panel, freeing the rest of the team (along with some of the people that probably shouldn’t have been freed).

The Wraith attempted to clear surveillance by shooting out the security cameras; this caused four staffers, Craig, Tom, Louise, and Martha, to appear on the scene. The ensuing battle was long but not particularly tough; Craig, having had to put up with Bright Man for years, was especially vindictive. The Descendant fought with his laser cannon, tossing the Wraith his peacemaker for defense. The party defeated all four deep, detailed characters with backstories, and Bright Man swiped Craig’s staffer badge so they could go up the elevator.

The team split up on the main convention floor. Bright Man ran back to his panel, frozen in place, in order to close it with a Bright Stopper. The applause, as usual, was thunderous. Meanwhile, the Mariner went into the Artists’ Alley to get a spare suit from one of his undercover IA agents, who was manning a table full of Ecco the Dolphin prints. The agent gave him a “free pog”–actually a suit emblem–and the Mariner returned to near-full strength.

The next step would be figuring out what was going on and how to stop it. The Mariner knew about the Chessmaster from experience–that he had paid all four members of the Neo Dread Hand to attack the team, that he wanted the power regulator in order to control his wildly varying projectile attack, and that he was likely expecting the team. The only way they could defeat him would be to convince one of the officers that he was playing them, and decided on Lady Steampunk as the most reasonable of the five.

Using Craig’s staffer badge, the New Legion ascended to the top floor. The doors to the offices/bedrooms of all five SuperCon officers lay before them: The Silver Fox’s was covered in greenery, Captain Maximum’s had a styilized “M” on the door in bright colors, the Chessmaster’s was black-and-white with a knight head on the front, Lady Steampunk’s was chrome with a lot of gears, and Weeaboo Man’s was covered with dirt, Pocky crumbs, and body pillows. The Wraith picked the (surprisingly easy) lock on Lady Steampunk’s door and the party entered.

Though Lady Steampunk was not there, they did make some interesting discoveries. The Mariner’s cane-harpoon and Bright Man’s helmet were there, pending modification to a more steampunk version. There was also a mysterious document on Lady Steampunk’s desk: On closer inspection, it was two documents clipped together. The first was addressed to the Chessmaster, with no name from the sender. It stated that he was on probationary status in a mysterious cabal, and in order to become a full member he would have to both fix his powers and capture the New Legion, the Wraith in particular.

The second document was a thick lab report. Though it was incomprehensible to most, the Mariner managed to understand the abstract: It was a psychological experiment involving subliminal messages placed into televisions. The last successful test subject became obsessed with putting things in a certain order, resorting to violent measures to meet his compulsions.

That man was Charles Feng.

While the team thought about what this meant about the Wraith, they were interrupted by a loud noise outside the door. Looking outside, they saw Weeaboo Man waiting for them, accompanied by members of his “elite” guard. Weeaboo Man dressed like a character from his favorite anime, the Steel Samurai, and managed to do cool things like cut the Mariner’s electric bolt in half with his sword. One of WM’s minions blasted the party with Leestreet Boys music, but he only managed to stun the Descendant. Bright Man shot off Weeaboo Man’s helmet, causing him to revert to his normal lack of powers, but before the party could advance the Chessmaster suddenly appeared.

Claiming the party fell into his trap, the Chessmaster suddenly switched places with Weeaboo Man and stomped the ground, falling through a trapdoor he had planted there. The Wraith and the Descendant pursued him through the door, leaving the other two behind.

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The Nefarious Neo Dread Hand!
Free sticker surprise!

It had been about a week since the defeat of the Killer Queens. For most of the New Legion, life returned to normal. The Descendant skulked back to his apartment block filled with time travelers (mostly Boston revolutionaries who played Yu-Gi-Oh!), Bright Man resumed his panels at SuperCon, and the Mariner continued his research at Industrial Aquatics.

Lewis Turner, however, was facing some serious problems. Not only were Reina and Tiny Tim missing from his orphanage, a mysterious structure had appeared in the middle of the warehouse block: A giant metal structure with the roof painted to look normal. He called the Descendant to ask for help.

At the same time, the Mariner returned to the Bank of Thomson and Thompson to complete the financing that had interrupted him at the beginning of the last story. While there, the director of the bank asked to talk to him. Because it was too dangerous to keep the items from the Lawyer’s time vault in the bank, he was giving custody over the vault to Lethbridge. He accepted, and the director showed him the Lawyer’s newest acquisition: A metal armband with a screen. Knowing this was future technology, the Mariner brought it to an expert on the subject.

The Descendant recognized it easily: It was a power regulator. If a super with uncontrollable or random powers wore it, they would be able to keep their powers under control. It was released in the same year Herschel traveled back into the past, cutting edge even for his future. Their chat was interrupted by the Wraith’s phone call, and the dynamic duo traveled to the warehouse complex.

Meanwhile, Bright Man was giving his weekly SuperCon panel when he was distracted by something: A $25 Gamestop gift card on the floor! As he reached for it, the card suddenly jerked back a couple feet: It was on a string. Bright Man chased the gift card several blocks through Metro City (it was on a very long string) to the warehouse, where the other three were waiting. Noting that the construction seemed similar to one of the Mariner’s oceanic labs, the team cautiously proceeded.

Investigating the seemingly empty warehouse, the party sprung a trap, and walls crashed down, separating the four. Doors suddenly appeared, and each team member ventured forth cautiously.

The Descendant’s path brought him up to the roof. Although it was empty, he soon saw something in the sky: A plummeting human figure. A trap door opened in the roof, and the person fell through, the door closing immediately afterward. While Herschel puzzled over this, a much larger object descended from above: The cloaked time-traveling pirate ship of his most bitter rival, Timebeard. The pirate himself rappelled down and mentioned that someone had paid him to join with other supers, calling themselves the Neo Dread Hand, and attack the New Legion. Swearing to send the Descendant to Davy Jones’ Time-Locker, he drew his vibrating chain-cutlass and attacked.

The Mariner found himself in what appeared to be an empty movie set for the hit TV show Explosion Force. Seeing a silhouette in the distance, he approached it. There was a figure in normal cameraman garb wearing sunglasses, fiddling with a backlight. When the Mariner asked him, the figure revealed himself to be Key Grip, Camera X’s intern. Film internships, much less paid ones, were incredibly difficult to come by in Metro City, and besides, he possessed a quality most didn’t: Due to a car accident, he had lost the use of his eyes, and they had been replaced by cameras. As soon as he revealed this, Camera X fired lasers out of Key Grip’s eye-cameras, taking the Mariner by surprise and blasting him into a wall, knocking him out.

Bright Man’s room was the strangest of them all: An indoor skate park. A helicopter, seemingly unmanned, hovered above one of the park’s numerous vert elements. As he pondered which Robot Master occupied it, a trap door appeared in the ceiling, and the figure the Descendant saw fell in. After doing some kickin’ rad skate tricks, he finally managed to build up enough friction to slow to a halt in front of Bright Man. The skater revealed himself as Rad Chad, a bad dude who had sworn vengeance on Bright Man for smashing his NES console. He hopped on his skateboard and attacked.

The Wraith went down a long flight of stairs into a beautiful and out-of-place garden. The missing orphans were in a gazebo in the center, but as he approached them, he found that another was there: His hated foe, Feng Shui. Without wasting any time, they started to fight.

The Descendant fired a shot at Timebeard and went invisible. The pirate, suffering from bad luck, suffered several misses from his flame-throwing flintlock before the gun exploded in his hand. Meanwhile, Rad Chad demonstrated his moves by grinding upside-down on the helicopter, but the unimpressed Bright Man shot lemons at him anyway. Rad Chad, badly wounded and angry, kick-flipped Bright Man into the wall.

The Wraith attempted to overcome his crippling fear of Feng Shui’s fire powers by creating illusory copies of himself to lead the orphans away. Confused, Feng Shui used his elemental mastery of wood to try to discern the correct one, but the real Wraith burst out of a flowing stream and shot him. Though Feng Shui figured out the location of the orphans and attempted to capture them again with plant vines, the Wraith pistol-whipped him into unconsciousness. Key Grip burst into the room, but he spent some time attacking the illusions instead of the Wraith.

Bright Man, reeling, watched in awe as Rad Chad summoned the ghost of Tony Hawk for the raddest trick that had ever been done, but found his resolve and shot him again, blasting him into the helicopter and causing Rad Chad, for the first time since he fell into the Mountain Dew, to bail. The Mariner, heroically recovered from his injury, burst through the wall, perhaps a little too late. Together, the duo blasted their way into Feng Shui’s hideout. With Key Grip wounded and Feng Shui himself unconscious, it looked like the team had won! However, Key Grip blasted the trio with a powerful backlight laser, knocking them out.

Meanwhile, the Descendant bitterly grappled with Timebeard on top of the building, neither combatant budging and inch. However, the battle was soon interrupted by a descending object: A SuperCon zeppelin. The Descendant watched, shocked, as Key Grip arose, pushing a dolly with the rest of the New Legion into the waiting zeppelin…

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Life...on MARS?
The thrilling conclusion!

The party stood in triumph over the unconscious Scaramouche as the Wraith wrested the Thin White Prince from his elegantly glovéd hand. With this, they would finally be able to defeat Ziggy Stardust and stop him from ramming the world of the rock gods into the earth. However, their glory was quickly interrupted as manned rockets emerged from the ground all around them. Killer Queen minions of all stripes rushed through the streets towards the Red King Stadium (the Queens’ hideout). The Wraith disguised the party as minions and they ran to join them.

Arriving slightly late, the team looked on from an upper balcony. There, they saw the members of the Killer Queens they had already defeated take the stage…along with their before-unseen leader, Bohemian Rhapsody. After brilliantly playing the crowd, the concert was rudely interrupted by the White Album, who proceeded to attack with the remainders of the musical teams defeated in the Battle of the Bands. Amidst the chaos, KQ members started climbing into rockets. The team snuck into the one containing the band members, and the Wraith created the illusion that the rocket was malfunctioning.

Although this briefly halted the Queens, a camera scan revealed the disguises of the party and they were quickly attacked by Radio Gaga and Sheer Heart Attack. They were quickly dispatched, Sheer Heart Attack receiving a taste of his own medicine at the hands of the Mariner and Radio Gaga being forced to answer several of the Wraith’s pressing questions. Also, Bright Man shot some lemons at him.

After the battle, the party arrived at their destination: David Bowie’s music heaven, the oddly-named “Mars?” Ziggy Stardust’s tower sat in the middle of a large city in the middle of a huge labyrinth, and at the top of the tower was what looked like a crashed 1960s-era satellite. The rocket landed at the base of the tower, and the Wraith disguised himself as Sheer Heart Attack and the others as minions again. (The crew members of the rocket were too busy arguing about Legend of Korra shipping to notice the fight.)

The inside of the tower was a confusing jumble of M.C. Escher-like stairs and doorways, but fortunately there was also a stone elevator that shot everyone to the top of the tower. There, the party came face-to-face with Ziggy Stardust and Bohemian Rhapsody, and after very little hesitation the battle began.

The Descendant used his powers of invisibility to strike quickly at Stardust, but the Thin White Prince was halted inches from the rapidly-spinning Platinum Record in his chest. Stardust rose into the air as the rest of the team attacked Bohemian Rhapsody. Rhapsody summoned thunder and lightning to frighten the party: The Wraith was briefly shocked and the Mariner, some obscure childhood incident reawakened, ran screaming like a little girl.

This left Bright Man as the only hope for mankind. Though he was scared originally, he “reasoned” that lightning generated electricity, and since electricity powered his stage then he was in his element. The subsequent adrenaline boost caused him to figure out a comparatively brilliant plan. At his request, the Descendant threw the sword to him, and he fired the Thin White Prince out of his arm cannon at Ziggy Stardust.

Ignore that. The Descendant totally stabbed him again. The Platinum Record was destroyed, leaving Robert Jones cowering in what used to be his glorious throne. Bohemian Rhapsody awakened, only to have the fight interrupted by the total destruction of Mars?. A familiar cry came upon the ears of the party, only said in a terrible and non-pretentious voice:

BUCEPHALUS, HO!”

A horrifying apparition appeared, dressed in a Letterman jacket and riding a cool black horse. He carried a basketball, which he used to suck out Robert Jones’ soul. For, as it turned out, the Killer Queens’ plan flew contrary to the plans of his mysterious master, and for that they must pay. The basketball changed into a football, and he threw it at Bohemian Rhapsody, whereupon it exploded mightily. The rider (whom the party would later recount as the urban legend, the Headless Sportsman) warned the party to not meddle further in affairs beyond their control and rode away.

The party escaped the crumbling dimension by riding back in the rocket they arrived in. The surprisingly adept Bright Man steered the rocket past the debris of the labyrinth. However, what they did not count on was Radio Gaga, who fired a final sound blast, spinning the rocket around. The small return portal cut the nose and jets off the rocket, and the party barely managed to survive by using an escape pod.

What followed was a nonstop flurry of festivities. The party finally gained major recognition in the papers and on cable news, hardly getting a moment to themselves between interviews and photo sessions. Also on the news was the capture of the Unseen Hand by a mysterious vigilante known as “Gearhead”, whom the party knew to be Dominion back in action.

Several days later, the Wraith returned to his temporary orphanage in the warehouse block near Little San Juan. Henry Irons, one of the twins he looked after, ran to him with some strange news: A mysterious building had appeared nearby. It was extremely large and blocky, but the top was painted so it would look like a normal warehouse from the air. In addition, far more sinister troubles were brewing. It would appear that two of the orphans were missing…

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Who is...BRIGHT MAN??
Domo Arigatomy, Doctor Lobotomy!

Ziggy Stardust immediately sat in The Mariner’s seat, pulling out a cell phone. Though The Wraith attempted to faze him by creating the illusion of a self-destruct sequence, Stardust seemed completely nonchalant. He made two calls: The first, a confirmation to Bohemian Rhapsody that he was still alive, and the second, to the sinister Doctor Lobotomy, who activated something called the “Spiders from Mars”. After completing his calls (and wiping off the table he put his feet on), Stardust smashed all the windows in the room and flew away.

The White Album was distraught. As he explained, Stardust was an old Lawyer villain who had attempted a similar plan back in the eighties. Stardust was creating a portal in the sky to collide the world of the gods with ours and remake it in his image. (The crystalline nodes he used to implement this plan made him resemble the White Album’s drawing.) While the Album departed to band together the ragged remains of the musical gangs to fight the Spiders, he asked the team to go to the hospital and “ask” Doctor Lobotomy how to reverse the parasitic infection.

The plan, however, was interrupted by the lights in the building starting to flicker. Small explosions at the nearby power substation drew the team to a bizarre situation. On one side of the conflict was Ham-Hands Tony, a Z-lister villain whose hands were shaped like hams, alongside his group of thugs. On the other…a man who thought he was a Robot Master. The group stepped in on the side of Bright Man, and Ham-Hands Tony was turned Hawaiian style by the Mariner’s new jellyfish venom injector.

During the subsequent interlude, the Wraith talked about how one of his orphans called him his “favorite superhero” and Bright Man waxed poetic of his lost love, Splash Woman. After that sappy nonsense, they went to the hospital and confronted Doctor Lobotomy. The doctor immediately attempted to escape, aided by some Spiders from Mars and his interns Head Case and Toe Tag, but was quickly defeated.

Under Explosion Force-style interrogation, the doctor let slip Ziggy Stardust’s one weakness: A sword called the Thin White Prince. The Prince, David Bowie’s only other artifact remaining on Earth, would destroy the Platinum Record if Stardust was stabbed with it and return him to Robert Jones. Jones, being smart, found the Thin White Prince a long time ago and hid it into his apartment. The Mariner backhanded Doctor Lobotomy and left him for the police as the group proceeded back to the Neon.

The Wraith broke into the locked sword case in Robert Jones’ apartment to find that someone had replaced it with a glove and a note saying “Slap yourself with this and come outside.” The Wraith followed the instructions and the party exited, only to meet with Scaramouche, who had been tricked by Radio Gaga into believing that he was still following Pagliacci’s orders. Though he deflected many things with his sword, including the Wraith’s illusory bullets, he was unable to stop Bright Man’s arm cannon and was defeated.

The team has the Thin White Prince, but striking Ziggy Stardust is no cakewalk. Tune in next week for the thrilling conclusion!

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