Electro Shock Therapist
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Under a desk in a cube farm
My story...as I know it
Ignore all the smarmy SG references...this story was originally posted on my SG's website and I was working on member morale when I wrote it - I haven't had the chance/time to update it since.
The farthest back she could remember was waking in a hospital bed in Atlas Park. The doctors chuckled and told her that the electrical anomalies she caused in their equipment made her treatment take longer, more rudimentary methods had to be used to heal her. They also commented on the fact her treatment would have been virtually immediate had she been a registered hero. She had no idea what they were talking about.
When she was discharged, a nurse gave her directions to Hero Registration and with a ‘You really should have done this before now’ look, and sent her on her way. With nowhere else to go, no money in her pockets and no memories, she headed there. She waited in line for what felt like ages, listening to all of the heroes ahead of her and their answers to the many questions asked, finding that most also came to this city with little or nothing. This thought gave her comfort, knowing she wasn’t the only one needing a little help – but they all seemed to have a story.
The bubbly intake woman smiled at her and asked her what her name was. She panicked – the only thing that came to her mind was a bottle she had seen in her hospital room. “Um, Digitalis…Lady Digitalis”. Just then she felt a jolt shoot through her body and she completely went rigid, it felt like her heart stopped! When the feeling passed, she looked to her right and saw a small circle of fire on the ground under the ‘Please Stand Behind This Line’ sign post, and a single bolt of lightning traced itself across her body. “Ah, electricity primary power set with fire secondary. That answers that question.” The woman smiled. A few more questions and Lady Digitalis was registered, had her hero ID card and the address of a half way house where she could stay until she found a place of her own.
After getting settled in at the half way house, she decided to go for a walk, and maybe something out there would jog some memory. What she saw didn’t jog any memories, but it did worry her – crime! Everywhere…all she saw was crime, muggings, cops being harassed, little old ladies being rolled for the few coins in their purses, and one word over and over again ’Superadine’. She wanted to help, but how? She knew nothing of her ‘powers’, how they activated, what they actually did, if they even did any damage.
Rounding a corner, she unwittingly happened upon two Hellions breaking into a building. “I’m tired of running!” one of them growled as he pulled out a baseball bat and advanced on her. She felt sweat break out on her forehead as the adrenaline pumped to her heart. ‘Fight or flight’ she thought, ’but how?’ Then she felt that same jolt as she went rigid again and watched as the circle of fire surrounded the farther Hellion, holding him in place, while a lightning bolt shot from her finger tips and hit the closer Hellion. Instinct took over and she just kept up this process until the first Hellion collapsed. Then she focused all attention on the other. ‘Fire circle, electric bolt, rinse, repeat’ she chuckled to herself. She kept this going for a while but was getting weak – and fading fast! Exhausted, she stood there as the Hellion pounded on her with the baseball bat, trying to gain enough energy to fight back. Suddenly she felt a surge of energy fill her and someone tossed her a blue vial shouting “Pop it! Now!” Without thinking, she drank down the vial and immediately had the strength to finish off the Hellion – which she did.
“I’m ERmed 911” the tall green hero said when she turned around. “Hi, umm, I’m Lady Digitalis”. “I’m an empathy defender” he continued, “You’re a blaster- and you need me.” Then he invited her to team up with him. “Let’s get a full team together and put the hurt on these guys” he smiled. “Follow me”. She followed him to a huge open area with a statue of Atlas in the center and heroes all over. Heroes of all shapes, sizes, attributes, it was almost too much to take in, and so much noise! Many of them were yelling out archetypes and levels and that they were looking for a team, others chatting about mundane things. Wow! It was so much to take in! Before she took in much of it, ERmed 911 said, “Okay all, let’s head out!” She saw that they now had a full team of 8 heroes and she ran to catch up with them as they took off to fight the epidemic of crime surrounding them.
As the sun went down, the team disbanded. ERmed 911 helped her out with her questions, told her where to go to train, what the hero archtypes were (what archtype meant), what the vials were for (they are called inspirations) and what enhancements are for. Then he wished her a good night and was gone.
Not tired yet and restless from all the knowledge she had gained about her ‘new’ world, Lady Digitalis decided to go back to Atlas and take in the wonders she had seen before. When she arrived, she saw that a dance party had formed, and in the center of it was a group of heroes in matching black and gold uniforms. All of them had ‘Team Omega’ listed as their Super Group. They all looked very sharp and seemed like a nice group of heroes. They were also very knowledgeable about Paragon City and talked of wild and amazing sounding zones and adventures, fighting Arch Villains in Peregrine Island and the Hamidon in The Hive. She found a corner, sat down and listened to them until the sun broke into the sky and she realized she was very tired. Just as she was about to head for the half way house, a hero asked her if she wanted to join a team headed for the Hollows. “We could really use a blaster for this” the diminutive hero said and smiled a twinkle in her eye as she giggled “Come On, it’ll be fun!”
After a few weeks, Lady began to feel that she was getting the hang of life in Paragon City, and life as a hero. She was getting a grip on her powers and learning new ones at, what felt like, an alarming rate. While her powers weren’t as strong as she wished they were, she found that teams really appreciated the endurance draining abilities she had. On a good hit, she could bring a baddie to the point where all they could do was punch the heroes around them.
Hopping on a team one day, she saw a new name in the group. For some reason, the name ‘Blu Bil’ gave her a weird feeling. She shook it off and headed for the mission. When she got to the mission, most team members were already inside and she heard them yelling for backup. She ran in, found the heroes and did her best to help them defeat FrostFire and his minions. In mid battle, she felt a blast hit her from behind and she suddenly had Super Speed, very helpful, but she had to remember to be careful or she would run right into mobs –this she had previously learned the hard way. During a break in battle, she got a chance to look at her team. When she set eyes on Blu Bil, a flood of emotions, visions, what felt like memories flooded her brain. “Who are you?” she quietly asked him. He gave her a sad smile and whispered “We’ll talk after this mission – we need to.” She rushed through the mission, strange thoughts running through her head - visions, emotions, and tears were coming to her eyes and she had no idea why…any of it made sense. She felt disassociated from it all, but it felt real, like what she saw in her mind were her memories.
At the end of the mission, she and Blu Bil thanked the other members for the team and they took off. “What’s going on?” Lady asked. Bil didn’t answer immediately, he just kept moving. Back to the safer area near the entrance to the Hollows he took a right, scaled a fire escape and jumped onto the roof of a building, then sat on the edge of the roof, facing the zone. Lady flew up to him and sat down. After what felt like forever, he spoke. “We lived here before the Hollowing, before the first invasion. We had three apartments in this building. Mom and Dad, me and you and your family. We didn’t have a lot, but we had each other and enough to get by – we considered ourselves rich, in our own way.” He paused to light a fresh cigar, took a deep drag from it, released a few smoke rings, then continued. “We all got separated during the panic after the initial attack. I came back here, expecting and praying that everyone would return by night fall. After a couple of days, I started searching the hospitals and the shelters. I found SB in a shelter and brought him here – brought him home. But no luck on anyone else. Its pure luck that we were on that team together today, thank God for luck and answered prayers, heh.” Lady sat speechless, she didn’t know where she fit into his story, but could tell from the defeated way the huge kinetic defender was sitting, he needed to get it out, and he would tell her her place in it soon enough. “SB and I have been here since then. He got a job as a pizza delivery guy for a while – it paid the bills until he was jumped by some Hellions. He’s ok, but he found a martial arts instructor that day and started training – I don’t know how happy you’ll be to know that he is a registered hero now. He’s very good, don’t worry about that – he learned from the best I could find to train him.” Still very confused, Lady couldn’t take it anymore, “How do I fit into all this? Who’s SB? Who you are and if you know, who I am?” she asked. A single tear spilled from his eye as he turned to her and whispered “You are my sister, my best friend and besides SB, my only known living family. SB, Super Brawler, is your son, this last few years has been very tough on us, SB especially. You have no idea what this will do for him to know that you are alive and well. You’ll come back to live with us won’t you? I can tell him I found you, right?” Lady answered without thinking, “Of course!” Then hesitated, “But I need to think for a few minutes…please don’t tell him yet…I need to get my head together. I mean, my things. I mean…” she trailed off. “No worries. It’s a lot to take in at once. We’re in apartment 6C when you’re ready.” Then he leaped off the roof and was gone. She watched him jump across the zone as thoughts jumbled around in her head, the only one that stuck out was ‘There goes my brother – my family’.
That night, she found herself knocking on the door of apartment 6C. When the door opened, no one was there. She slowly walked in and was greeted by fingertips pressed to the base of her skull. “Who are you?” A menacing voice whispered behind her. “Lie and I break your spine.” She felt sweat trickle down to where the fingers met her flesh. Bil came around a corner and his face immediately lit up “YOU CAME!” He ran to her and wrapped her up in his arms, lifting her some 3 feet off the floor and, dislodged the fingers from her neck without a mark. When he put her down, she turned around to face her attacker. Before her stood a tall sinewy young man with shockingly blue spiked hair and glowing eyes. His face was covered with a scarf, so she could make out no facial expressions, but from the look in his eyes and the way he held himself, he didn’t trust her and was ready to strike in a flash.
“Who is she Unc?” the youth sneered. “SB, you may want to sit for this…it’s big.” Bil said. “Nah, I’m cool.” SB crossed his arms on his chest and continued to eye Lady suspiciously. “Ok, your choice.” Bil shrugged. “SB, please meet Lady Digitalis – your mom.” Super Brawler collapsed into the couch behind him.
They ran together for a while, as a family, then found that with their different fighting styles and patrol hours, that was difficult. Lady began to patrol with the same couple of heroes each night. High Chief and Lunar-Knight. Other heroes came and went as the night’s patrols would pass. One night in Striga Isle, Lunar-Knight told High and Lady of an elite group of heroes he thought they should apply for admittance to. He told them of the perks they could get from joining this group (besides the camaraderie, there was the chance to learn from some very experienced battle veterans).
A few nights later, the three met up for their evening’s patrols and Lady saw the two of them in the black and gold uniforms she remembered from that first night in Atlas Park, High and Lunar were Team Omega. After the night’s battles, Lady applied to Team Omega. Thanks to Lunar’s glowing words, Lady was quickly accepted and found that the things he had said about the elite group were true, as well as much more.
Team Omega turned out to be a group of vagabond heroes from across the globe, brought together for one purpose – to protect Paragon City from the menace that seemed to grow daily in it’s desire to destroy the city completely. Through their love of the city they called home, their need to bring it back to a semblance of its former glory and a deep feeling of respect for each other, they had become a family. Over time, Lady found her niche in Team Omega; she made many friends and felt she had found a home. She patrolled the streets of Paragon with them, fought arduous battles against incredible odds by their side and in rare peaceful times, danced with them as she had seen them do that first night. Bil and SB joined her in Team Omega and only then did it truly become her family.
One late night while in Steel Canyon, Omega Medic asked to speak to her after they defeated the Council base they were about to battle. “Certainly, Sir” she readily responded, wondering what the leader and founder of Team Omega could possibly want from her. She thought back over the last few weeks and couldn’t think of any transgressions or breaks in the policies of Team Omega she may have made. “Am I in trouble?” she radioed him. He chuckled, “No, you’re not”. While she valiantly fought along side her team mates, she did miss a few obvious shots, feeling like an idiot – she hoped OM had not noticed. Her mind was quickly running over and over again what he could possibly want from her. At the end of battle, OM announced to the team that he needed to speak with Lady, and they quit their team. He flew to the rooftop of a far off sky scraper and asked her to join him. Heart pounding, Lady got quite a shock that night. Apparently her name had been brought up in a number of recent applications and she was being offered a promotion, to Public Relations Officer. She beamed and readily accepted, finding it difficult to believe that she, someone who felt so alone and out of place everywhere she went, would be offered this honor. She did her best to learn the ins, outs, whys and where fors of her new job and was handling the majority of the interviewing for Team Omega in a short time. OM and the other leader, Census, told her that they trusted her judgment and were glad of their decision in promoting her; she only needed to trust herself. For Lady, this was a problem; she had second guessed herself as long as she could remember. You tend to do that when people have to tell you what your past is.
A great mage named Azoth joined Team Omega. He quickly became known for his healing powers and was called upon quite often for battles in the far reaches of the city. Lady would meet up with him after the day’s battles to listen to his tales of these places. She took him to her favorite spot in Talos and told him how it reminded her of somewhere just out of the reach of her mind, some place that brought her great peace. Soon they became fast friends, both finding a solace in the other’s company, a lessening to the loneliness they felt. In Azoth, Lady found a deep abiding friendship and felt that finally she had someone to stand by her side, a protector. Lady could share things with Azoth that she hadn’t shared before, her fears of what her unknown past may hold, fears of what the future held. Azoth shared stories of the many things he had seen and done in his 1800 odd years. Places he had been, stories of his village, Karsis. Lady noticed he seemed haunted when he spoke of Karsis, but when she questioned him, he changed the subject.
One evening, Azoth told Lady he had something to show her, she wasn’t to question him, just follow. He opened a portal in space and the next thing she knew, Lady was standing on the beach in Peregrine Island. Azoth sat down, facing the water and they talked for a while, about nothing really. “Now, sit next to me and turn to face the water.” Lady looked at him questioningly, but complied with his request. She looked out over the water just in time to see the most amazingly brilliant sunset she had ever witnessed. “I’ve wanted to share this with you for some time now” Azoth said. She sat in awed silence for sometime as the sun dipped lower and lower over the horizon, the sky burning a fiery crimson then fading through the color spectrum to lavender, then deep blue as stars began to appear. “I don’t know when the last time I stopped to watch one of those was. You can’t even see the war walls out here, totally unobstructed. Thank you” she gushed then, stood up and wrapped her arms around Azoth’s neck “That was beautiful!” She pulled back, smiling. Planting a peck on his cheek, she heard him whisper something. Her heart stopped as she realized just what he’d said “I love you too” she whispered as she looked into the mage’s eyes. They talked for the rest of the night, then he suddenly jumped up and said “Wait here” and teleported away. “Um ok…” she said to the air around her. Then she felt the now familiar pull of a portal opening for her. As she appeared at Azoth’s side, he turned her to catch the last seconds of the sunrise. “So begins another day of crime fighting in Paragon City.” She sighed as her hand slipped from his.
Unknown to either of them, this would be their last sunrise together for sometime as duty called them to separate corners of Paragon City. A resurgence of Rikti activity combined with the ever present Devouring Earth problem kept them apart for weeks at a time.
Lady reached security level 50 shortly afterwards, having thrown herself into the fray and picking up extra patrols to cover the time she and Azoth had spent together and lessen the ache she felt when away from him for extended periods. With this security level she could reach all of the zones the city had, although a number of them would always be dangerous for her. One of these zones, Fire Base Zulu, held a strange kind of pull for her, she couldn’t figure out why – but she found the 3 suns and the amazing fire like sky breath taking. She spent enough time there that she became somewhat careless and would run ahead of her team to scout, usually ducking behind a rock to be healed shortly before an enemy over took her completely.
When she heard that there were solar flare showers in FBZ one afternoon, she jumped at the chance to see them and took a call for backup from a team she didn’t know. She touched down just outside of Check Point Charlie and failed to notice the group of Brutes. Unfortunately, they didn’t miss her, they took her down in no time at all. Oh well, it had happened before – she really needed to be more careful. Thank heaven for the medi-porter all heroes used. But this time, something wasn’t right. The storm caused a disruption in transmissions from the medi-porters and when the disruption had been found and repaired, Lady Digitalis wasn’t ‘online’. She was found by the team she was supposed to be joining, but she had been there for a long enough time without a link to the medi-porter, that they could only return her body to Peregrine Island medical facility. The residual effect of her electrical powers, again, wreaked havoc on medical equipment but this time it would be her final downfall. The electricity combined with subtle alterations caused to her body by radiation exposure during numerous battles to protect the Terra Volta Reactor made it impossible to revive her, and the heroes of Paragon City had to do something rarely seen, bury one of their own.
The funeral was attended by heroes from all over Paragon City as well as some of the city’s more noteworthy citizens, the City Representative even left her post in City Hall to say goodbye to the tiny hero.
Lady Digitalis was laid to rest in a tiny plot in the corner of a cemetery in Croatoa. A few kind words and stories were shared by the heroes there and they departed to deal with the loss in their own personal ways, most of them, returning to battle and pushing thoughts of the miniature casket from their minds.
Azoth returned to the site about an hour after the ceremony. He cursed the ground Lady laid in for accepting her so readily and Fire Base Zulu for drawing her like a moth to a flame. He sat next to the square of earth and asked her why she wasn’t more careful, why she needed to push too hard and go too far so often. Then he conjured a black Orchid and placed it in a small hole at the top of the upturned earth. He told the spirits of the cemetery the meaning of orchids, that they are the flower of death and in fields of dead bodies, they grow. As he told Lady that he hoped she found her orchid, he imbued the flower he planted with life giving magic. The flower immediately straightened from a wilted state and took root. As Azoth sat at the grave, he filled the flower with much magic, magic filled with life and grief. He stood and looked at the grave a last time “With death breeds life” then he opened a rift in space and left. At which point, the inky black orchid began to emit a violet purple aura.
An unbound nictus was flying through Croatoa, lost. Having just been released from its captors, it had no idea where to go or what to do next, it only knew it had a need for a human host and a desire for justice. As the nictus flew high over the cemetery fence and swooped low down the other side, the orchid caught its eye. It stopped short, hovered near the flower and quickly became entranced. Gazing at the orchid’s intensity, the nictus felt a strange pulling sensation and a desire to stay with the flower.
Azoth was a very strong mage, and no one knew the full extent of his healing powers. Somehow, in the shadow of that orchid, in a blinding blue light, an explosion of negative energy produced a nova strong enough to return Lady’s essence to the earthly plane and bind it with the nictus. So was born Orchid’s Shadow. Now one being, with the memories of both entities, Orchid’s Shadow quietly tries to separate in her confused mind whose memories are whose and how they will live together while she locates the people who tortured the nictus and brings them to justice. Somewhere, just out of her mind’s reach are three heroes she needs to find who can possibly answer some of her questions.