Children of the Mythos

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Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:53 am

This is an idea I've had in my head for awhile, thought I'd set it down here to work out the details and see what everyone thinks.

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A BIT OF HISTORY
Late in 1929, the FBI raided the small Massachusetts port town of Innsmouth that had been overrun by a species of intelligent deep-sea dwelling amphibious bipeds, commonly referring to themselves as Deep Ones. The Deep Ones had been engaging the townsfolk in a forced breeding program for generations. Almost ever citizen bore Deep One genetic traits to some extent.

The population was removed to holding facilities spread out all over New England while the authorities tried to figure out what to do with them, as conventional criminal charges did not cover the scope and horror of what had occurred. Understandably, the FBI was reluctant to explain why the population of an entire town was being held without official charges. So somewhere in the halls of power, the decision was made that the detainees had to “disappear.”

A facility was build for them in the scrub desert of East Texas; their connection to the sea figuring into that location choice. It was at this point, persons unknown convinced the US government to allow medical experiments be performed on the detainees. Few records survive from the yearly months of the Program: notably absent are the names of those responsible for the first experiments.

THE KITCHEN
In 1933, the Program was taken over by Dr. Crawford Tillinghast, who was its longest and arguably most successful head of operations. Tillinghast’s research, after much trial and error, proved specific traits could be extracted via core samples of certain species’ physiology (such as Deep Ones), “distilled” and injected into pure human subjects. These test subjects were provided by Government agencies, also not named in the records, and consisted mostly of condemned prisoners and hobos; people who would not be missed. This type of experimentation earned the facility its enduring nickname: The Kitchen.

Fear of the Deep Ones’ ultimate agenda had driven the Government into full scale clandestine search for any other such “colonies.” Within a few years, samples came in from other parts of New England, then from all over the country. Many species were discovered in the shadows of America. And they were all sampled: Mi-go, Nightgaunts, Ghouls and other strange things that had no names. Fear became full blown paranoia and Tillinghast was funded almost unsupervised for most the next decade. A boon to the scope of samples came with WWII and America’s presence in the South Pacific and Europe. The War provided an equal boon in test subjects as thousands of Japanese and German Americans were detained for “security” purposes. This would continue with those “undesirables” arrested for unamerican activities during the Red Scare of the 50s.

By the second decade of the experiments, two facts were becoming clear: 1) mutations caused by sample injection could be passed to the next generation in a stable form if the parent were breed to someone lacking mutations. And 2) Dr. Tillinghast was losing his mind. His experiments were becoming more “bent” and he frequently ignored safety protocols. No more so than with his insistence on breeding mutant with mutant, especially of differing sample types. These pairings were often in-viable but the few offspring that survived were very powerful and very violent. Some combat field tests were done in Korea but the subjects were too difficult to control. The last such subject, designated M2B-216 (only six years old and already the size of a small car), had to be destroyed after he abandoned the mission, escaped his handlers and raided a nearby village. He killed several village men and kidnapped three women, taking them to a make-shift lair in the woods. When the tracking team found him, he was in process of mating with the women. They “overreacted,” killing not only M2B-216 but the three women as well. They, and Dr. Tillinghast, were reprimanded, the mutant-to-mutant breeding experiments were discontinued and all progeny thereof were destroyed (or so it is believed).

In 1954, for reasons that are not documented, Dr. Tillinghast was removed as head of the Program. After this point, no record (anywhere) exists for Crawford Annesley Tillinghast. He was succeeded by his research assistant, Harold Brown, whose seven months as head of the Program ended just as abruptly and just as secretly as Tillinghast’s term. Brown was replaced later next year by young biochemist Dr. Samuel R. Hadden, an ambitious man looking for peripheral profit from discoveries made in the Kitchen. Under his leadership, the Kitchen also made many (lucrative) strides in pharmaceutical technology.

Though he did not see the same potential as Tillinghast, Hadden continued the experiments with cross-breeding unaltered humans to injection mutants. The offspring, designated M1Bs, were all viable and seemed mostly normal, exhibiting their unnatural traits only under extreme stress. The difficulty being that most could not thereafter “un-manifest” these traits, which often included psychopathic homicidal tendencies. It was hypothesized and the Program was under way to cross-breed the stable generation yet again to unaltered humans, producing otherwise normal humans that could call on their unnatural traits at will. That was the plan, that is, until the Escape.

THE LOVECRAFT CONNECTION
Despite extensive secrecy and security, some documentation has filtered out of the Program over the years. The most curious of which is a photo-static (and later photocopied) copy of a 1943 excerpt from the personal journal of Col. Leland Robertson, liason between the Program and an equally mysterious OSS project code-named Spook Show. Other sources depict Robertson as a voracious reader and a fan of “speculative fiction,” a hobby he likely kept to himself given his position.

In the excerpt, he discovers the HP Lovecraft story “Shadow Over Innsmouth” and is shocked by the accuracies to actual events. He quickly begins to consume all the published works of the man he can find while quietly launching an investigation into what connects he may have had to law enforcement or governmental agencies. Of the latter, he finds absolutely nothing. Lovecraft was an unassuming man living a simple life in a quiet corner of Rhode Island until his death by natural causes in 1937.

Of the former, he is stunned to find, dotted through out Lovecraft’s work, names, places and even dates that very few people should know of. Chief among the data that upsets Robertson seems to be the details of the Innsmouth raid and the nature of the main character’s research in “From Beyond;” A character named Dr. Crawford Tillinghast. A cryptic, quickly scrawled entry decries: “From Beyond written in 1920!! Ten years before Tillinghast’s incident!” Seeming to refer to Robertson’s knowledge of an incident Tillinghast was involved in four years before taking over the Program.

The excerpt has a short list of Lovecraft titles, each accompanied by a published date, a date when written and a third, unspecified date. Presumably, this third date refers to events that actually occurred featured in the adjoining story but no details as to what elements of these stories cause him concern. The rest of the excerpt contains note on Lovecraft’s life and death and fruitless interviews with his circle of fellow writers. The tone of his writing suggests he did not trust anyone in the Program or his own project enough to divulge his discovery. An early entry exclaims: “How old is Spook Show? Could they be doing it to us all?” Nothing further is mentioned about his project.

In an early generation of the photo-static (or Xerox) copies, the copier wrote in page numbers but skipped pages six through nine. In the margin of page ten is written “2 pages torn out.” The whereabouts of the original journal as well as the contents of the missing pages is a mystery. Col. Robertson died in 1952 on an army base in Utah. It was called “an accident during training maneuvers” which at the time, especially among WWII veteran officers, was a common euphemism for suicide.

THE ESCAPE
The female designated M1B-39 was the most the most socially adept of any of the subjects by the early 60s, often helping the staff by calming the more violent subjects. Hadden was suspicious of – one might even say paranoid about – M1B-39, writing cryptic lines about her in his otherwise scrupulous notes. He often remarked a religious quality to her interactions with the other subjects and as often as possible had her isolated from the general populace. But there had been massive budget cuts since the Korean incident and no expansion of the Kitchen’s facilities made that difficult.

By the mid 60s, Hadden was convinced M1B-39 represented a danger, though his attempts at conveying this vague threat were met with a little reaction. He even attempted to invent potential hazards she might represent but these efforts were so thinly conceived and transparently contrived that there were nearly grounds for disciplinary action. Still, his sporadic ranting about her did not detract from the efficiency with which he administrated the rest of the test subjects and the facility as a whole. It all sounded to Management like Tillinghast did before he was removed. Should Hadden go that way, he would simply be removed as well. To their peril, he was ignored.

September 14, 1967, 1:37 AM, power went out all over the Kitchen and the back-up generators all failed. The test subject slipped from their cells, overwhelmed security and escaped the East Texas scrub desert; 232 mutated men, women and children as well as 41 unaltered humans meant for breeding stock. Though most of the humans were easily recaptured, only eleven of the mutants were recovered but had to be killed to do so.
The escape caught everyone by surprise except Hadden. Within hours of the Escape, before dust could settle and blame be laid, Hadden also disappeared. He resurfaced a week later in a non-extradition country, mailing photo-static copies of excerpts from the Program’s records to specific senators and DC power brokers, proving his threats were real. He had, over the last few years, copied and hidden away nearly every piece of data that had ever passed through the Kitchen: names, dates, account numbers, findings. Forty years of illegal government detention and amoral experimentation on its own citizens. And it would all go public if anyone moved against him or his newly formed company – which now owned every medical discovery the Program had ever made but secrecy had not allowed them to patent. It has since those rich first days, expanded and diversified into the type of multi-national self-sovereign powerhouse we were warned of in post-modern science fiction.

It is said that Hadden’s archive – the only complete, unaltered archive of the Program’s files – still exists in a deep vault of some Hadden International facility somewhere in the world. If it does, it would be the Holy Grail of understanding the present super-humans. But Hadden kept that card very close to his vest. He died in 2005 of cancer. His board of directors then bought off his few relatives and divided the company up among themselves, keeping the name for logo recognition and tax purposes. If any of them know the whereabouts of the archive or its significance, none have made a move with it so far.

THE PROGRAM TODAY
The Program continues to this day, though on a much smaller scale, and as a subsidiary of Homeland Security. The present head of operations is Arleen Waite, a non-scientist with instead a background in intelligence and espionage. With these changes, the Program’s priorities have shifted.

For many years success in the search for the Escapees was very sparse. It seemed only those whose physical mutations would not allow them to hide in populated areas could be tracked down. The M1Bs and their children, the M1Ds, seemed to just disappear into America.

It was theorized early on and since come to be widely believed that the Escapees – most of whom had been born in captivity – could not have integrated and hidden in society so effectively without organized help. Though no conclusive evidence has been gathered, circumstantial observations in the field by Program operatives suggests that such an organization has infiltrated numerous and varied levels of American infrastructure, forming the network that once helped hide the Escapees and may be aiding their progeny today. The only name ever known to be used for this network is the Cult. The nature and agenda of the Cult is one of the highest priorities of the Program; second only to the destruction of the surviving escapees and the capture for study of any offspring they may have spawned.

But above even these agendas, an ominous question looms: why now? Why, almost two generations after the Escape, are fully stabilized super-humans beginning to emerge? Some say it is just non-captivity breeding as was originally hypothesized. But there are those that believe this is simply their time; that the stars are finally right for the children of the Mythos to realize who they really are.
Last edited by imfarias on Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by Dr. Lovecraft » Mon Aug 01, 2011 1:27 am

I am LOVING this idea!! Always been a big fan of the Mythos and it's even found it's way into our (primarily) four-color games at times! This is a great read! Please feel free to keep expanding on this! :)

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:06 am

Thanks. Really appreciate your positive comment, this being my first attempt at writing up a world.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:14 am

This faction will serve as pretty much the main bad guys, even moreso than the Program. This is the basics on them. I'll flesh it out a bit more later.
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THE CULT
Many cults have existed throughout history to the various dark deities: the Esoteric Order of Dagon, the Church of the Starry Wisdom and the unnamed cult of Cthulhu are among the most persistent into modern times and of which the most (not much) is known. But in recent years, these have been surpassed in numbers and influence by the Brotherhood of the Ecstatic Agony. The Brotherhood traces its origins to the first century, BC. A derivative (distortion) of Epicureanism (pleasure and pain are the measure of good and evil), the Order maintains that evil is not without its merits and pain (feeling or inflicting) can reveal truth; the greater or more intricate the suffering, the greater or more intricate the truth.

Through their abhorrent pain rituals, the Brotherhood drew the attention of what became their patron god: an aspect of Nyarlathotep called the Piper at the Gates of Night. And so the Brotherhood continued for centuries as all the other cults did, keeping themselves secret and recruiting from the demented, the disillusioned and the damned.

In the first years of the twentieth century, the Piper appeared and walked among his people. He divulged many mysteries of the cosmos, of alien science and of earthly magic. The high priest of the Brotherhood – a Frenchman named Leopold D’Shadre – committed all that the Piper conveyed into fourteen journals, collectively titled Agon Perplexus (Riddle of Agony).

The Brotherhood followed the Piper around the Mediterranean as he gave demonstrations of his knowledge to secret enclaves of philosophers and wise men. He recruited many. Those that refused merely disappeared.

The Piper gave his swelling ranks this prophecy: the fabric of the world would change and to remain “pure” you must not be upon the world when it happens. To that end, he planted a crystal seed of “alien and unnatural colour” in a cave on a small uninhabited island near Crete. The Piper said the seed was his will and it would be made known when the time was right. With that, he vanished.

Guarded by the Brotherhood, the crystal grew slowly for years, but never up. Always down, deeper into the Earth, devouring rock and absorbing water from the ocean. Over the next thirty years, it hollowed out the island and expanded hundreds of feet below it. The interior formed into chambers and passageways and doors. And machines! Many machines, some with obvious utility, others incomprehensible in their function.

The cultists who spent time inside the Crystal Palace (as it came to be known), found they “knew” what the Palace needed. Compelled, they would bring specific chambers offerings of mineral salts or gallons of sea water left to stagnate a certain amount of time. Many of the lower chambers required uranium. And all were absorbed into the mass of the Crystal Palace, along with the pain and blood from the Botherhood’s abhorrent rituals.

In 1937, the “island” started moving. The above-water portion of the island remained mostly intact while the Crystal Palace broke free of the shell of under sea mountain it had hollowed out and left the Mediterranean Sea. It did not stop for seven months, the time it took it to circumnavigate the world. After that, there was some “suggestion” of its direction and speed that the high priests could make but little else.

In 1941, the Crystal Palace parked a hundred miles off the California coast for some months, longer than it had stayed anywhere. Taken as a sign, the Brotherhood gathered supplies aboard, including extensive rations, gold and jewels for trade, and slaves.

The evening of February 24, 1942, the Crystal Palace lifted itself out of the water and into the night sky. As it passed high over Los Angeles, gun batteries fired ineffectually at what they thought were enemy planes. Within a few hours, the Palace exited the atmosphere and settled into orbit. From here, using the Palaces many machines, the Brotherhood of the Ecstatic Agony watched and listened. As they do still to this day.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Tue Aug 02, 2011 10:19 am

THE CULT (continued)

LIFE ON AN EVIL SATELLITE
The chambers of the Crystal Palace had been the lair of the Brotherhood for decades before it lifted itself into space. So the cultists had spent years breathing the somehow reconstituted air of the lower chambers and feeling the dry warm glow of the walls. But its affects did not become clear until the first generation was born on board. Deformities are common but few actual “disorders”: virtually no incidence of cancer. Though odd numbers of organs are frequent, their functionality is rarely impaired. Retardation is twice as likely but occurs with the same regularity as hyper-intelligence. Children born without a facility – say eyes – are often gifted with compensatory abilities (like ears keen enough for echolocation).

The gravity generated by the Palace’s strange crystals is uneven. In a few places it still maintains Earth normal but in most, it has slowly been ramping up since it first attained orbit. At present, its average is almost three times Earth normal gravity, going as high as five times in a few chambers near the core. The inhabitants occupying these areas have – probably with the help of the altering affects of the Palace – grown proportionately strong.

The populace is arranged into four castes. The Priest Caste is the ruling body and makes up the policing forces of the Palace, called the Inquisitors. The Crystal Caste is technicians that tend the Palace and its alien machines. The Labor Caste does the manual labor required for day to day life aboard the Palace. And the Low Caste is a punishment (though one can be born into the caste) for any who defy the Priests. This caste is used for pain rituals, occasional sacrifices, “recreation” and duties in hazardous areas.

Though some lichens and mushrooms are grown onboard for food, most comes from the planet. Agents of the Brotherhood maintain a number of farms that are regularly visited by drop-ships, powered by summoned nightguants. Agents (any Palace inhabitant operating on the Earth) must be “reshaped” to blend in. This is accomplished by either advanced surgical means or in the case of the Inquisitors, their minds can be transferred into a crystal based but (reasonably) human looking simulacrum, composed mostly from the crystal of the Palace.

Most interaction with humanity occurs via computer or other transmissions, as the Crystal Palace is the hub of DiStar, a powerful and still growing telecommunications company, used as a front for the Brotherhood’s activities. DiStar owns and operates six other mundane telecommunications satellites as well at three more grown from the Palace that – like the Palace itself – no authority on Earth is aware of.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Wed Aug 03, 2011 2:08 pm

THE CULT AND THE ESCAPE
From the first days in orbit, it was clear that the greatest asset of the Crystal Palace was its vantage point. Using the machines of the Palace, the Brotherhood could hear and see much across the world. The high priest throughout the 40s, an Englishman named Charles Ward, was a greedy, self-serving man. He used the Palace to discover the meeting places of powerful wizards and cults, and then gave them the ultimatum: join the Brotherhood (for a fee of an item of great power) or become its enemy.

Over the decade, though they absorbed many lesser cults and recruited (albeit by force) some gifted wizards, the Brotherhood suffered many losses to grow Ward’s personal horde. Sentiment was greatly against him when Oliver D’Shadre (grandson of Leopold) usurped him and became the youngest ever high priest of the Brotherhood, in 1952. Ward himself “suffered a fate beyond all description in the deepest chamber of the Crystal Palace.”

As military satellite communications flourished the late 50s, the Cult stumbled upon the existence of the Program and, later, the location of the Kitchen. They began to transmit a psychic signal to the detainees: “You are not alone.”

None of the detainees had any training in mental powers, so only one, advanced subject received the signal. After great effort, a dim response came from subject M1B-39. A dialogue was begun in dreams and soon a time and date were set. The escapees met up with agents twenty miles west of the Kitchen by an abandoned train watering station. They were moved by train, by truck and even a few lifted up to the Crystal Palace via nightguants perched atop crystalline drop-ships. Those remaining on Earth were spread out on the Brotherhood’s farms across the Midwest. Once there, they began to build new identities based on interaction with humans form the surrounding towns. The now escapees proved much better at this than those from the Crystal Palace. Not only were most of them physically able to pass as human, but they were more behaviorally prepared as well. Despite the harsh conditions in the Kitchen, the escapees that appeared human, thought of themselves as human and behaved accordingly. Unlike those that might have been raised by a mutilating space cult that worshiped a dark god of suffering.

But not all the escapees were happy with their association with the Brotherhood, especially after discovering something about their religious practices. Some felt the call of their alien blood but others held onto their humanity, such that it was. Oddly, those escapees not of the Brotherhood made the better agents for the Palace than those from there. They blended in easier. Many began to freelance work for the cult as a way of showing fealty without becoming a member. To this day, the Brotherhood refers to the escapees and their descendants as the Freelancers. With them as a network of spies, the Brotherhood has reached further than even its advanced technology allowed it.

Much more diplomatic than is predecessor, Oliver gave the Freelancers leeway not to participate in the religion… at first. But the decision was unpopular on the Palace and he soon had to demand they observe at least some of the Brotherhood’s disturbing rituals.

M1B-39 adopted the identity Susan Kinds and spent most of her time aboard the Palace, plying for her people’s rights, including the right not to become members of the Brotherhood if they wished. All the while drumming up sympathy and discontent among the very poorly treated Low caste.

In 1971, tensions came to a head when an M1B and her human mate killed two agents attempting to take their daughter to a mutilation rite on the Palace. The human man was killed in retaliation the next night but the agents responsible were gravely wounded while escaping other Freelancers.

When news of this reached Susan, she incited the Low caste into a full scale revolt. Even those escapees who had embraced the religion, turned on the citizens of the Palace at her command. After six hours of intense fighting, the two sides reached a stalemate, each holding about half the Crystal Palace.

Oliver and Susan met in parlay. Eventually Oliver agreed to allow any escapee that wished to remain in the Brotherhood or join at a later date, to do so without reprisal. All who did not wish to, would be left alone. In exchange for this, Susan would make two concessions: 1) she would not only abandon leadership of the Low caste revolt, she would also use her influence over them to return them to slave status. And 2) to foster a long-lasting peace, she would bare Oliver a child, who would, by decree, one day become high priest of the Brotherhood.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by Dr. Lovecraft » Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:38 am

This thread sparked off a conversation between a group of us the other night about just what having DNA from a Mi-go, Nightgaunt or Deep One (not to mention things like a Hound of Tindalos!) would do to a person... what kinds of powers, defects and personality traits would possibly manifest...

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Fri Aug 05, 2011 6:52 am

Pretty much anything could be explained by the presence of mythos DNA: Wings for flight (or even space travel) from the Mi-go; of course aquatic adaptation or any other sort of ocean themed powers from the Deep Ones; time travel effects from the Hounds could explain numerous powers including teleportation and super speed. Ancestrial memory from many creatures could provide super-human intelligence and technology skill as well as mastery of magic. And on top of what the creatures brought to the mix initially, the PC would be 2 or 3 generations removed from the original experiments, allowing further mutation.

As with everything in the game, discriptors are all important. The effects would have an unsettling, alien quality to them that would upset anyone observing their use in ways they could not easily explain. It's not just that they see a person sprout insect wings and fly, but that the wings were of a spongy, fungal nature, and the veins running through them were a sickening color that does not exist in the Earthly spectrum.

I see the PCs as probably having strange obsessions, presenting almost like schizophrenia (what do you do when the voices in your head really ARE aliens calling you home?). Anything from a life-long facination/fear of the ocean, to the urge to dig up and eat aged cadavars, to the certainty that the purpose of your existence is to bring dark incomprehensible powers even one step closer to usurping man's dominion of the Earth.

Some of the personality difficulties might just be a "lost in translation" scenerio due to the unusual perspective of the individual. What if you could see time/space at right angles rather than along a curvature, so that you could see (some of) the future and knew some events were unavoidable but others could be manipulated through a complex series of seemingly unrelated actions? Would you tell anyone?

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:06 pm

LEO D’SHADRE
The child of Oliver D’Shadre and Susan Kinds was born on August 6th, 1972. Named Leo in honor of his prestigious great-grandfather and astrological sign, all outward appearances showed him to be a perfectly normal human baby. For eight years he was raised by his mother among human looking Freelancers. After that, he was frequently brought aboard the Crystal Palace as part of his “education.”

He excelled at everything. Only a few years after his training began, he grasped the basics of the Brotherhood’s complex philosophy and the fundamentals of its magic. He also showed aptitude in the operation of the Palace’s advanced alien technology. On Earth, he easily interacted with humans, going so far as to insist on attending public school to further his understanding of them. There were a few… incidences – nothing that could be proven – but over all he was the perfect chameleon, fitting into whatever society he wished to.

He was being groomed to lead the Brotherhood but he soon rose to prominence among the Freelancers as well. He was an instructor in infiltration techniques for the Freelancers, a full acolyte in the Brotherhood, an apprentice to both a powerful wizard and to the Crystal caste technicians, all before the age of twenty.

At the age of twenty-one, Leo packed a drop ship with supplies and left for interstellar space. The note he left said, “It is not enough to incant the names and observe old ritual. We must move forward. I will find the Piper’s will. I will find our way.”

The Palace and the Freelancers nearly came to blows once more, each trying to blame the other for his leaving.

Four years later, he returned on a teleport beam from deep in the void. He had with him many strange artifacts and alien devices. After talking in private with his father, Oliver sacrificed himself to the Piper, abdicating the high priesthood to Leo. Though the Freelancers still maintain their independence from the Brotherhood, no one in either community has since disputed that Leo D’Shadre is the final authority among the children of the Mythos.

THE WAY
Leo enacted many new endevors as soon as he took power, including the expansion of DiStar Telecommunications - responsible for most of its (and the industry’s) rapid growth in the late 90s - but most predominantly, the new breeding program. Not just between Palace citizen and Freelancer but also with select human specimens.

Those Freelancers that could secure their appointed mate on their own were allowed to do so, though marriage was discouraged. For the Palace citizens who usually could not, an alien abduction scenario was used. The required men and women were taken aboard a modified drop ship, their sperm or eggs removed and then they were returned to Earth with their memory of what did this to them altered to fit the X-Files tradition. Leo often jokes that if the Grays ever come back to Earth, they will be quite cross with him.

The offspring, where possible (human in appearance), were raised on Earth and in as purely human environments as possible. Those artificially conceived on the Palace were placed in foster care or even adopted homes through an agency set up by DiStar. Though the children were watched carefully, and still are to this day, no direct contact has been made with them or their unsuspecting foster/adopted parents.

And so it has gone on, from the mid 90s to present day. Only Leo – and presumably the Piper at the Gates of Night – knows the purpose of this new program.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by Thrincold » Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:36 pm

This is a horrific take on super mythology. By that of course, I mean that I quite like it. Comibing such elements of Victorian horror and sci-fi is quite a nice twist on the origin of powers. I do want to know, which their knowledge of the Kitchen and their alien technology, are the cultists not trying their own breeding and genetics programs? It would only seem logical for them to be trying to increase their power while further removing themselves above humanity.

Can't wait to see more.

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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Thu Aug 25, 2011 9:14 am

DESIGNATIONS FROM THE KITCHEN

Though commonly referred to as their “slave names” most of the Escapees started life with no other name than their alphanumeric designation from the Kitchen. Still, it has continued to be used among the Freelancers just to differentiate generation and type of altered human and of course it is still used in the on-going experiments of the Program.

Alpha
A subject who has had his/her biology altered by the introduction of genetic material from a Mythos creature. This was initially achieved through the extraction and distillation from preserved tissue samples that were then injected into the subject’s bone marrow at key points. Today, through a painstaking and expensive process, the DNA of most of the catalogued creatures can be synthesized artificially.

Alphas invariably showed physical traits of the donor organism but also regularly developed mutations not of the donor’s physiology. The mutations resembled the result of multi-generational exposure to low-to-mid levels of radiation. The mutations were only occasionally severe enough to cause death.

The Alphas were (as the new generation of Alphas are today) understandably horrified by their imprisonment and mutation. It manifests in aggression, depression, paranoia and suicidal tendencies. None of these conditions are directly associated with their altered brain chemistry.

SECOND GENERATION
The breeding program was a hold over from the apparent hybrid success of the Deep Ones in Innsmouth. What exactly Dr. Tillinghast intended to (and convinced his superiors would) occur is not clear, but his attempts were thorough and on a fairly large scale. They produced the Betas and later the M series.

Universally, the unaltered human subjects (and even some of the Alphas) were unwilling participants in the breeding program. An exotic system of restraints, as well as incentives and negative re-enforcement, were employed to insure compliance; all of which were designed by Dr. Tillinghast – possibly the first sign of his mental deterioration, if not the cause. The holding cell where these sessions were carried out gained a nickname: The Rape Chamber. Staff members were reprimanded severely every time the name was used in any official documentation.

Several of the sessions were filmed... for scientific purposes. But most of the reels were destroyed by the military liaison upon Dr. Tillinghast’s “disappearance.” A small number are still unaccounted for to this day.

Beta
The product of the mating of an Alpha and an unaltered human. Originally called B1A, the abbreviation was abandoned when it was realized that no counterpart B2A (offspring of two Alphas) would ever live longer than a few minutes. Though the mortality rate of Betas was nearly twice the national average (for the time) those that lived were not only very healthy, but also appeared almost completely human; only analysis of their bio-chemistry would reveal their true nature.

Less than half of the Betas would develop Mythos characteristics on their own, and then only after puberty. And these characteristics often differed from those of their parent, resembling more a “modification” of the traits to better suit a human host. Those Betas that did not manifest traits did have them lying dormant in their cellular structure. After puberty, primal stimulation – like a life or death situation – would cause the traits to manifest almost instantly. However, in these cases, once manifested, the Beta could not return to a purely human appearance.

Also, the main “side effect” of trait manifestation was the onset of one or more mental disorders, such as manic depression, masochism, sadism, schizophrenic delusions and hallucinations and homicidal mania. Betas with these disorders could often hide them from the staff until an opportune moment to “indulge” themselves. Several guard staff was lost in this way.

B2A
The product of the mating of two Alphas. On the extremely rare occasion that such mating worked, the offspring were so choked with deformities that most never came to term and the handful that did, died within minutes.

M2B
The product of the mating of two Betas. These, Tillinghast and his superiors believed, would be the military application they had been waiting for. Though a miscarriage and infantile mortality rate higher even than the Betas, the surviving offspring matured at a startling rate and bore no resemblance to its parentage, its Mythos lineage or to anything else the world had ever seen.

Though each was utterly unique, the M2Bs did share certain traits: they were all very powerful, violent, with often incomprehensible behaviour patterns and so physically tough that they were hard to control. But most of all, at only a few years of age, each developed an aggressive breeding instinct. Given their “flexible” DNA, Tillinghast theorized they could produce offspring with any animal life that could survive the process.

Tillinghast did everything he could to keep this from the military. The result was the fiasco of M2B-216 in the last of the of the Korea field tests. These experiments were scrubbed and the M2Bs were supposedly destroyed. However, Tillinghast managed to secret away at least one, perhaps more, of the M2Bs in the holding cells of an abandoned subbasement. Tillinghast’s eventual replacement, Dr. Hadden, could not have operated the Kitchen for the years that he did without knowledge of the secret M2B(s?). Why he kept this secret himself is unknown to anyone and died with Hadden in 2005.

M1B
The product of the mating of a Beta and an unaltered human. Though the pregnancy to mating attempt rate was remarkably high (almost 99%!), the Program was only able to produce a few of the M1Bs before the Escape put their research back 20 years. The M1Bs appeared completely normal; no test at the time could detect any abnormality and even today only a DNA screening done by someone that knows what they are looking for can show them to be anything other than human.

M1Bs can manifest their Mythos traits at will, some even before puberty, and recess those traits just as easily, taking on completely human form again. The M1Bs at the time, and others raise or monitored more recently, tend to be unusually intelligent, physically attractive (sometimes looking nothing like either parent) and mentally well-adjusted despite adversity or stressors in their lives or any mental illness suffered by their Beta parent.

The Program and the Cult agree on this: they would make perfect agents for any power that can control them. Though it has most of their locations, the Cult’s inhuman behaviour and agenda – as well as the animosity of the Freelancers who mostly raised the M1Bs – makes recruitment difficult. The Program’s aggressive “3Ds” approach (detect, deactivate, detain) has not proven more effective, sending many of the M1Bs on the defensive. Some groups have even formed to protect themselves from both factions.

MX
A recent advancement of the Program in agent enhancement technology, the MX series agents have their physiology altered to withstand temporary gene therapies to induce Mythos traits. The extremely painful process gives the agents a more flexible bone structure and enhances muscle efficiency. But primarily, the agent is laced with an internal gene therapy delivery system that can be loaded with specific Mythos traits and released into his blood stream by a pressure point control unit (modified nerve endings) located under the agent’s left arm.

Each agent can hold several trait loads but it is recommended that only one be activated at a time. The interaction of multiple Mythos traits can be unpredictable.

imfarias
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Re: Children of the Mythos

Post by imfarias » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:06 am

THE YITHIAN CONTINGENT

The Great Race – as they call themselves – escaped their dying home-world of Yith in a mass exodus to Earth 750 million years ago. But they did not come physically. They transferred their minds into the bodies of beings that already existed here, trapping the minds of those beings in their former bodies on a dying world. Over the next several million years as they ruled Earth, they perfected the mind transfer technique to not only reach minds almost anywhere in space but also at many points in time. And so, by abducting minds and inhabiting stolen bodies, they slowly explored the universe, learning many of its secrets – some long lost and others not yet discovered.

But, at length, a vicious and powerful enemy came from the deep void to once again threaten them with extinction. And once again, they would cheat death with their mind transference technology. But they coveted the Earth so they decided to remain on “their” planet but move their minds to a time when the Enemy had moved on. Also a mass exodus would only be possible when certain alignments of stars occurred both in their time frame and the target time.

All the conditions were right in 1952.

A few dozen Yithian minds were sent ahead to anchored that end of the “Temporal Psychic Path” to a remote town whose outlying farm families gathered for their harvest festival. The normally small town of Grover’s Mill, New Jersey held almost 4,000 human bodies for mind transference. At the apex of the star alignment, the gates on both sides were thrown open and thousands of alien intellects rode a beam of thought across a gulf of countless epochs.

They almost made it.

In their investigations of humanity in the mid twentieth century, the Yithians did not discover the Brotherhood of the Ecstatic Agony hidden in their Crystal Palace satellite. Devices aboard the Palace detected the forming Temporal Psychic Path and drove its inhabitants to fire a mysterious weapon called the Motive Impulse. The existence of the weapon was unknown before then and in the 60 years since, no one has been able to fire it again.

The weapon shut down the Temporal Psychic Path but what exactly happened to the transitioning minds of the Yithians is a matter of some debate. The hope was that they were destroyed though some believe they still exist, just trapped outside of time and space. The Yithians that had been sent ahead and were already embodied seemed to be unaffected.

As for the humans of Grover’s Mill, many reported lights in the sky (Foo Fighters a few WWII vets called them, UFO not being a common term yet). But after a week, no more discussion of the sightings came from the witnesses. A secret department of the Military called Delta Green – at the time looking into UFOs – questioned the townsfolk a month later and none of them know what they were talking about. No reporting witness had any memory of what they had claimed to see.

Over the next 10 years, incidence of juvenile delinquency (especially runaways), alcoholism, divorce and suicide skyrocketed in the small community. The town proper was abandoned as the population dwindled. By the early 70s no member or descendant of the original community resided in that county. To this day, people living and/or working in the area have a slightly higher incidence of stress related disorders and mental illness than the state average.

Meanwhile, the embodied Yithians ran to ground, aware they had been attacked. Even without their advanced machinery, their minds were powerful enough to temporarily transfer their consciousness into other hosts. They used this power sparingly as to not draw attention to themselves but to great affect: slowly gaining influence and resources in human society. The Brotherhood pursues them to this day, but in the 60 years since the failed mass exodus they have not captured or killed a single Yithian.

But in recent years, the Yithians have become much bolder, especially where the products of the Brotherhood’s new breeding program are concerned. Leo D’Shadre’s edict that the new generation be raised by humans and monitored at a distance has allowed the Yithians to capture some of them. What has happened to these captives (or if they are even still alive) is unknown. What is also not known is how the Yithians discovered the breeding program or the locations of the off-spring. Yithian minds may have infiltrated the Freelancers or even the Crystal Palace itself.

Agents of the Brotherhood have the means to detect Yithian minds in close proximity but no way to track them at range. Paranoia grips the Brotherhood now but D’Shadre says this turn of events is a boon. “It is likely they want the new generation for some advance experimentation, possibly even to use as superior permanent hosts for their minds. Either way, it will require technology humans do not possess and that the Yithians are loathed to have them witness. They will have to build it themselves. For the first time since they arrived, the Yithians are coming out of hiding. To build alien devices that the Palace can detect. In a centralized location that the Brotherhood can attack. Certainly they do this to bring some doom upon us all before we can bring doom to them. But either way, doom approaches at last.”

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