Writing Process, Justice Wing

Patreon Exclusive: Worldbuilding and Notes for Greenhorn #2

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Notes, worldbuilding, behind-the-scences information, and cheerful explanations on stuff found in Becoming Leather: Greenhorn #1! PATREON EXCLUSIVE!!!

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5 thoughts on “Patreon Exclusive: Worldbuilding and Notes for Greenhorn #2”

  1. It’s kind of funny in a way. Two social outcasts who really just want to be noticed….and they hate each other because each thinks the other is getting in the way of their spotlight (and they probably both knew some mean girls that looked and acted like the other one).

    Bandolier needs professional help. But then most villains do, probably.

    …Why elaborate death traps though?


    …..Yeah, ok, I think I get why she had a grudge against Ant…. It sounds like opposing her would make Ant …godly. And I doubt Beguile likes the competition.

    Calhoun is scary for several reasons. I’m not sure what most of them are.

    ….Is Refraction the one who showed up at Vilify 5? Did he take out a loan from the Service to build that first suit?


    So she really is a Murder Librarian?

    Bandolier is probably a really good example of one of those villains that seem sane, coherent, and affable….right up until they aren’t and then you die. Most other villains seem to be either subtly (or overtly) menacing/terrifying all the time or….they’re probably not gonna do more than scare you a bit (intentionally anyway). Maybe some bruises. Anchor….I dunno, he seems like he has that undercurrent to me, for all that he’s pretty affable. Likely it’s all those genocide “jokes” that really, really, aren’t.

    (For the record, allowing the other species a chance to grow and thrive and maybe achieve sentience on their own? That sounds like a cool thing to me. The part where it breaks down is the whole “death of the human race” thing. I’m….not really disputing with him that the human race needs to not be here for that to happen, I just don’t want to pay that price. I wonder if he might compromise on some kind of mass exodus or something, where the humans go off to some other planet. Not that I think he might go “legit,” it’d just be interesting to see him working with Lucas on getting a human colony set up on Mars or whatever.)

    As I’ve noted before, the only reason I’d even attempt blackmail against any top tier level villain would be as a form of protection and I’d want to do it very professionally. Possibly though the Service or something.

    ….Like, I think Calhoun might be willing to work with that, I dunno. Beguile…. hard to tell.

    The Jack…. yeah, no. I’d go yell for Paragon for five minutes and if he didn’t show up… well suicide is probably preferable to whatever the Jack would come up with for anyone stupid enough to try blackmailing him.

    Honestly, I think being married to someone who is both a fundamentally decent person and who works hard to remain a fundamentally decent person while also being a nigh-godlike being would be difficult. Every relationship takes work and a certain amount of selfish desire to make the relationship work. And, when you know that taking a weekend off to be with your wife carries a probable body count, in people “you could have saved, but didn’t” that’s …hard to deal with. Granted, every time Paragon takes time off he runs into that problem, but being married likely makes it worse.

    At least partly because Barbara is also definitely aware of the problem, so asking to take time off even if they both really need it, is going to be hard for her too.

    Honestly, it’s just….hard to be Paragon and a person too.

    But yeah, I think the Apocalypse Agenda would break even a good marriage.

    …..Oh yeah. Something I’ve been wondering. I’m aware that super powers in this world are more than just biological traits, so I’m not asking you to give us a “punnet squares from hell” type dissertation, but …Both Leather and her sister have basically the same powerset and it seems to be innate to them. Mom had a different set of powers. Dad apparently doesn’t have any powers. That seems odd enough that there might be something going on, other than just “weird super-genetics.”

    You’ve got a point. Beguile has magic powers and undefined abilities, but possibly including teleportation. She also has her own henchmen. Getting a couple of people hired to temporarily disable anything that might prevent her simply teleporting in, opening the box, and teleporting out, should be pretty simple for her.

    Hell, she could probably bribe one of the existing staff to simply….walk her in to the vault for less than a million. When you’re telepathic, figuring out what someone’s deepest desires are probably isn’t that difficult. If nothing else, renting a safety deposit box there would at least get you into the building, and I doubt their security could significantly oppose Beguile once she was in the building.

    Thinking on it, I’d probably try to get the deposit box next to the one we needed to steal the sd card out of, put some kind of high tech computer in there, remotely copy the card onto a shielded media, then pop a small electromagnetic pulse. There’s enough tech guys on the team that they could probably handle that. Granted, it wouldn’t get Calhoun what he really wanted, but they don’t know that, do they?

    Yeah, bad things could totally happen to you if you fail to give a good accounting of yourself here.

    1. A few other responses:

      Yes, Refraction’s the same guy who appears in Vilify 5. He didn’t take out a loan with the service to build his first optical powersuit — he misappropriated tech and prototype lab time from the failing startup that he’d sold his patents to in the first place.

      Anchor isn’t joking about genocide. Anchor has every intention of wiping out the human race, and he doesn’t pretend otherwise. Would he ever actually do it? I dunno. He hasn’t done it yet, regardless.

      It’s very hard to be Paragon. At this point, Paragon’s been doing this for decades. His sister’s dead. One of his best friends betrayed Justice Wing, then died after seeing the light. Another of his best friends… well, whatever the situation was where Nightstick and Cudgel gave way to the Nightwatch. A third of his best friends (Mason Temple) is in a coma with no apparent means of bringing him out of it. Chad Keillor’s marriage is over. His civilian career is almost a joke — decades of working as a fact checker for the Chronicle without so much as a promotion, because promoting him would take away the flexibility he needs so he can help people.

      On the other side of all that… Barbara Babcock is a legendary journalist. She wins awards, interviews Presidents and Dictators, and chases down a story even if it means tying herself to the underbelly of a helicopter for six hours so she can tail the suspected crime lord to his lair and get the scoop. Ask anyone — anyone — in the Justice Wing universe what they think of when they hear ‘Barbara Babcock’ and their immediate answer will always be ‘Paragon’s girlfriend.’ This? Despite the fact that Paragon (in that identity) and Barbara have never actually officially or formally dated. There reaches a point — that’s all I’m saying.

      Mandy, back in Forebears, implies there are certain abilities that show up more commonly than others when she does her adaptation/opposition thing. The Shapiro girls both demonstrate enhanced strength, great speed, agility, heightened senses, rapid healing to the point of regeneration, ‘burst’ super-speed, and being able to use their abilities with expertise right from the start without heavy training (and pick up new skills almost as fast). These are all the abilities Mandy would gain when opposing a street gang of prosahumans, for example. Leather and Lora got the ‘base package.’ As for Evan… mm, no comment.

      There’s lots of ways Beguile could get that SD card, without a doubt. Honestly, Beguile works more and more through organizations like Anchor’s Marines because it’s too boring to just do it herself. There’s nothing satisfying about using a cheat code all the time.

      And yeah — at the core of everything… the job requirements surround Calhoun’s real intent, which is why they don’t really work for the stated mission objective.

      1. I’m quite aware that Anchor isn’t joking. However, based on how Anchor acts, I think plenty of people could be forgiven for assuming that his “plans to wipe out humanity” are a shtick he uses to make himself more than just a bank robber.

        With the way the Service runs things, I’d imagine plenty of people view super fights like they do the WWE and Anchor’s demeanor could easily fool someone into thinking he’s no more “villainous” than a classic Heel.

        I have little doubt that he’ll be ready to use that mistake when it’s to his advantage.

        1. That’s….

          …really astute. Admittedly, Anchor would have had an easier time getting away with his comments back during Halcyon Days, but with the general drive (especially when Greenhorn takes place) to “get back to normal life” (including a desire to push parahumans back into the hero and villain boxes) this would be an absolute take a good number of people — and media outlets — would take.

          Anchor would, undoubtedly, take this as yet more evidence that the human race is terrible, even as he benefits from it.

  2. It’s kind of funny in a way. Two social outcasts who really just want to be noticed….and they hate each other because each thinks the other is getting in the way of their spotlight (and they probably both knew some mean girls that looked and acted like the other one).

    Yup. And you can’t have two ‘centers of attention.’ Well, Multiplette can, but they’re both her.

    Bandolier needs professional help. But then most villains do, probably.

    …Why elaborate death traps though?

    Why elaborate death traps? Because Bandolier needs professional help. He’s been obsessed with killing the Beacon (either of them) since the Emergence era. The longer his burning desire to kill the Beacon remains, the more he builds up his personal fantasy surrounding her death. That means bigger and ever more complicated death traps, so he can prove once and for all that Him Smarter Than Her.

    Are there any number of times he could have walked up to an unconscious Beacon and put a bullet in the back of her head? Of course. That’s not good enough.

    (Some people have — very, very quietly — suggested that Bandolier isn’t obsessed with killing the Beacon so much as he’s obsessed with trying to kill the Beacon. He’s like a dog chasing a car — he lives for trying to bring that car down, but that doesn’t mean he’d actually try to latch onto the bumper and shake it to death.)

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