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What to do with a winged ex-heroine?


red_eagle123
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After reading the Angel Sucks thread, I felt compelled to ask this question.

 

A while back in my FtF game, two of my players came up with brand spanking new characters. Their old characters were thrown through a portal to hell (ostensibly to shut it). The two old characters were Minotaur (a human man-bull brick) and Ladyhawke (A female version of Angel, essentially).

 

Well about 7 months later I bring back Minotaur in an NPC fashion, with his now calling himself Taurus and leading the Zodiac. He claimed after his little jaunt through hell that he wound up in ancient greek times and has been living ever since.

 

Now the players are curious what happened to Ladyhawke, especially the former player (Who happens to be my fiancee... whoops). I would like to bring her back for a cameo, if only to bring some closure to the character. I had originally thought that she'd become a guardian angel, but in thinking about it I have a hard time writing that type of character in as a one/two-shot guest appearance.

 

So my question for the boards: Knowing what little you do about Ladyhawke and her circumstances, how would you bring some closure to the character? Ideally I'd like it to bounce off the trip Minotaur wound up taking somehow, but not have her join him in forming Zodiac. I know there are some creative people out there, so... ideas?

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

So my question for the boards: Knowing what little you do about Ladyhawke and her circumstances' date=' how would you bring some closure to the character? Ideally I'd like it to bounce off the trip Minotaur wound up taking somehow, but not have her join him in forming Zodiac. I know there are some creative people out there, so... ideas?[/quote']

 

1) She became infused with the spirit of Niki, goddess of victory and now lives on Mount Olympus.

 

2) She became a messager of some great force of good or evil (the force gives her more duriblity etc)

 

3) She in tombed by magic in Eygpt and is set free by the present heros

 

That is all. :earth:

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Have her come out at the same time Minotaur/Taurus did. Assuming that she wasn't immortal, she has passed by now.

 

However, while she was alive, she flew around and explored the ancient world. She eventually hooked up with a splinter of Alexander the Great's army that settled down in the Himalayas. She fell in love, settled down herself, and eventually her genetics have influenced most of the little mountain-top community, forming a lost civilization of greek-themed winged folk heavily influenced by Eastern mysticism. Ladyhawke is revered as their founder.

 

Thinking that someday her old teammates might show up, she's made sure that "legends" of them as her old friends remain and are handed down, so any of her old teammates will get a welcome reception. Maybe a few sculpted scenes of Ladyhawke & team in battle with some of their old foes are available for the heroes to peruse.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Ladyhawke's heroic motivation continue. Many legends and myths surounding Angels and te war in Heaven and Hell may be attributed to her battles against Arcane Adversaries.

 

Her heroic sacrifice allowed her companion Tarus escape hell. She has become the slave of some Demon Lord. Perhaps the big guy himself has and interest in tomenting an "Angel". (See Marvel Comics "Hellcat" mini-series).

 

Tarus has learned where she is and how to rescue her, but that entails the heroes travel to hell.

 

Unknown... It's a mystery never solved. One that the appearence of Tarus may lead our heroes on a quest to discover the truth. (Something very rare ideed in hell).

 

Freeing her body from hell may allow her spirit to ascend to heaven.

 

Hmm... more later

 

QM

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

A thought that occured to me after my original post:

 

Ladyhawke manages to claim some small modicum of power within the various levels of the Netherworld (Using the Mystic World definition for 'Hell' here), and gathers together the dead spirits of other famous winged persons (Icarus, other winged heroes, etc etc). Together they're fighting off the forces of hell. However, the Angels from above disapprove of their image being mocked by mortals, and thus are also fighting Ladyhawke's forces.

 

The current players are brought into hell to help the resistance in some way.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

I'm not sure about the winged characters. It sounds all a bit too contrived to me.

 

How about she becomes an avatar or maybe servant of the Greek goddess Nike ('Winged Victory')? This was mentioned above, but she needn't actually become that being. (It's Nike, not Niki).

 

It sort of ties in with the minotaur character becoming Taurus.

 

As such, she could be a bit like a guardian angel, turning up for an important scene, but wouldn't have to be around all the time.

 

"Who's this winged warrior woman with the sword?"

 

*Ladyhawke removes her helmet*

 

"But, but, it can't be YOU!"

 

Maybe she just finds some magic armour and a sword and fights demons on her own. She cannot leave Hell because she's too busy foiling demonic plots, or because the armour is cursed and, while it warns her of demons (Danger Sense and Clairsentience) and has extra protection against demons and fire, it was made for a paladin who vowed to rid the multiverse of demons and had the armour enchanted so she could never go back on her pledge.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

A new monstrous, batwinged supervillain has been terrorizing the campaign city. In confronting her the PCs discover that it's the body of Ladyhawke sent to Earth from Hell as the vessel for a possessing demon. Just enough of Ladyhawke's soul remains for her to reveal who she is and what's happened to her. Make it clear to the heroes that whatever pain they inflict on the possessing demon will agonize Ladyhawke as well - see how they deal with the issue of having hurt her to stop the demon.

 

Obviously the PCs will want to free Ladyhawke of her possession; that can be as easy or as hard as you want to make it, up to and including travelling to Hell themselves to confront the demon's master. The result may be leaving Ladyhawke as a NPC hero (perhaps so traumatized that she isn't willing to rejoin her former team and life), or as a depowered DNPC. Or perhaps her possessed body must die so that her soul can pass to its true reward.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

She's been driven insane by the loss of her wings and her time in hell, mainly because she refused to give in as Minotaur/Taurus did.

 

Have her discovered by someone on the streets. She's just another crazy homeless person, muttering to herself all the time. Maybe one of the PCs stops a bunch of thugs from taking advantage of her.

 

If someone recognizes her, cool. If not, have her shirt ripped off to reveal horrible scars on her shoulder blades. She keeps muttering about needing to fight evil, or maybe about past adventures (something popular that the PCs might remember).

 

The nice people at Shady Hills come to take her away. Will she ever recover her sanity? What will become of her? Will her wings grow back? Maybe she'll recover and be able to leave Shady Hills, but now she's on a quest to retrieve her wings. There's bound to be some helpful individual/company out there who will provide the necessary grafts. Of course, nothing is free, right? And she might not be all that sane after all...

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Well the players didn't know she'd been abandoned in Hell. They thought she'd died (Short Version is her and Minotaur made a heroic sacrifice to close a portal allowing demons to infest the world. They pushed the key/anchor holding the portal open through the portal, causing it to explode violently).

 

When they met Taurus, they realized that Ladyhawke may still be alive. As of yet I've kept them too busy to go looking for Ladyhawke.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Ladyhawk never accepted the Lord in life and so all of her good deeds were no use in protecting her from the torments of Hell. An eternity of rape, torture, humiliation and degredation has left her mind and soul shattered, but the demons who torment her have kept her trapped in her own rotting carcass. The heroes face a minor demon; he summons an even more pathetic creature to defend himself. It's Ladyhawk. Thr destruction of the prison that is her physical body frees her soul, which plunges back down into the pit. Then, things start to get a little dark.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

That's a bit harsh, Oddhat. Good if they want a dark storyline, though.

 

I have a few extra thoughts on my idea about Ladyhawke being trapped in Hell. First, the armour allows for some surprise when they find her. I don't think they should be looking for her, just have to go to Hell for some other reason.

 

Second, they might have to leave her in Hell (assuming no one can break the spell in some way), which might offer some nice roleplaying opportunities.

 

Third, they can then keep their eyes open for ways to free Ladyhawke in the future. The quest to get her away from the magic armour could provide some future plot ideas and bring the PCs into conflict with Demon or other mystic foes.

 

Depending on how well they respond to her coming back as an NPC, you can keep her in Hell, kill her off (in a heroic manner, I hope), or even eventually have her return to Earth. She might even ascend to some higher plane, after killing so many demons.

 

Has anything said so far by anyone sparked ideas red_eagle123? If not, what's the tone of the campaign? What are the players like? What sort of stories and events do they respond well to (not necessarily enjoy)?

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

That's a bit harsh' date=' Oddhat. Good if they want a dark storyline, though.[/quote']

 

Yup, dark mood when I posted.

 

That said, the concept and nature of Hell in the campaign will make a huge difference. If, as is often the case in fiction, it's just another Earth-like world ruled by demons, where you can solve your problems by hitting things and food, water, rest, shelter, etc are non-issues, then you can have a fairly hopeful story. Writers have been doing that since before there was a formalized Christian concept of Hell, and it works. On the other hand, if your campaign is going to have dark themes anywhere at all, this is the place.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

SThat's a tough one. Ladyhawke was essentially abandoned in Hell (HELL !)and the PCs

are just starting to wonder about her ?

 

Reminds me when new writers take over a book and decide to get rid of a character by having them suddenly being trapped somewhere and forgotton about.

 

G

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Has anything said so far by anyone sparked ideas red_eagle123? If not' date=' what's the tone of the campaign? What are the players like? What sort of stories and events do they respond well to (not necessarily enjoy)?[/quote']

 

There've been a couple ideas sparked by the posts. Actually I've liked nearly all the ideas tossed out there.

 

As for your questions, the tone of the campaign is generally four-color super-hero, with a touch of realism occasionally thrown in for spice. I try for retro silver age as much as I can, usually winding up with an Astro City feel.

 

As for the players, I have 8 players. Of those 8 players, I have 3 that are pretty heavily into the role-playing of their character, 3 more that are starting to pick up on that, 1 that is only there to roll dice and bash heads in, and the final one has experience and provides comic relief (albiet unintentionally). 3 of the players have experience with the rules prior to starting, two are well versed enough as gamers to wing it with little trouble, and the rest this is their first Role-Playing game.

 

As for what stories they respond well too, most of them really liked the whole Taurus revealed as Zodiac story, as well as the accompanying story:

The demon that Minotaur & Ladyhawke helped stop prior to shutting down the portal had been given amnesia and accidently joined the team as their lawyer, only to discover he had super-powers. At the height of the story, Taurus revealed the demon's true nature to the character and the other teammates. The player of Minotaur was also the player of the Demon and this was a story we'd worked out over 7 months of gametime.

 

Currently they're trying to adjust to being in a new town complete with superbase and supervehicles. I'm working on having multiple plots going (Something I never did before now) so that the world feels more alive around them. They seem to be responding well to that, as well as meeting some of the established characters in the CKC and other books.

 

 

That said' date=' the concept and nature of Hell in the campaign will make a huge difference. If, as is often the case in fiction, it's just another Earth-like world ruled by demons, where you can solve your problems by hitting things and food, water, rest, shelter, etc are non-issues, then you can have a fairly hopeful story. Writers have been doing that since before there was a formalized Christian concept of Hell, and it works. On the other hand, if your campaign is going to have dark themes anywhere at all, this is the place.[/quote']

 

I'm using the description of Niffleheim given in 'The Mystic World' book. Since one of my players is a demon, there is a connection to the more traditional setting of 'Hell', but it's understood by all the players that that's only one facet of the realm. They've taken one trip to hell already, but haven't been had a chance to collect their thoughts regarding going back to look for Ladyhawke. Plus it's unclear to them how time interacts with the other dimensions, so they're thinking they have to go back in time first.

 

Ideally my goal for Ladyhawke is to come up with a conclusive ending to the character, preferably something that the player can look at and be proud of. Despite the fact the player doesn't control the character anymore, I don't want to do something to the character they disagree with. The conversion of Minotaur into a villain was okay'd by the player, Ladyhawke's player wouldn't want that. She wants some heroic end...

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Have a demon sighted somewhere. The PCs come to investigate and find the demon is battling local law enforcement for possession of a bag. However things end, in the bag is the battered, bruised and very much dead body of Ladyhawke. Through magic, telepathy, or maybe just a note, a powerful demon of hell relates how he is returning the body of the magnificent warrior woman who fought so valiantly until the very end. She is a credit to the soft peoples of Terra Firma, and he looks forward to having such challenges in the future...

 

A nice heroic ending, a bit of honor from the enemy, and a bit of foreshadowing of things to come...

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

First, it's a 4 color campaign, a bit like Astro City (excellent).

 

Second, your players like surprises and clever 'bits' (also excellent).

 

Third, you actually have some players who like to roleplay (also good).

 

Fourth, you'd like something heroic and final for Ladyhawke.

 

As I see it, there are three ways for things to be final. Of course this is a comicbook universe, so 'final' is kind of relative. :)

 

1. She dies.

 

2. She loses her powers.

 

3. She vanishes for good and isn't coming back (eg she seals a dimension forever, or is sent into the distant past or future).

 

3 is too like what happened before and also doesn't really make a huge amount of sense (why is she gone forever?).

 

2 is OK, but of course might not really be final enough, because the character is still alive, just without powers. Perhaps she is regressed in age to be a baby again and this time will have a chance to live her life peacefully.

 

1 is the classic heroic option, but therefore also a little clichéd. Perhaps an innocent must die to activate the spell needed to defeat the demon and she kills herself. She could fall in battle, making one last effort to save everyone else.

 

If you went with my idea (yes, I am plugging it to death), how about the characters eventually find a way to free her from the armour? She can now leave Hell. However, just before they all head for home, up pops a nasty devil. Without blinking, Ladyhawke grabs up her sword and attacks, even though she no longer has the same protection. Without her magic armour, she is mortally wounded, but buys the players enough time to flee, or to get their act together to defeat the big bad guy.

 

She should, of course, hang in there just long enough for a touching death scene. She can now die free from Hell, die free as a bird.

 

(Anyone who started humming the Lynard Skynard song loses an experience point :))

 

The characters have saved her soul and defeated the big villain with her sarcifice, so they've achieved something, but the victory will be tinged with loss.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Ladyhawk also was sent back in time, but not as far, and to a different location. She appeared to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay, who were very afraid. She told them to fear not, and found she was able to speak ancient Hebrew.

 

 

 

Her new code name: Serafina Her new purpose: Protector of the Holy Grail

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Send her forward in time just as far as Minotaur went back. There she picked up the good fight and now leadsa band of ragtag fighters in a struggle against "insert future Villain using a current Villain's legacy."

 

Then have her use an unstable time travel device to summon some of her greatest allies from the past. Then your players hang in the future for an adventure before having to return in order to maintain the time stream.

 

Alternately she could travel back in time to meet back up with the party but I'd find it harder to justify her need to return to the future.

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Re: What to do with a winged ex-heroine?

 

Maybe after a while in Hell she gets an offer she can’t refuse: They’ll stop with the torment if she’ll agree to get Taurus and the ex-demon PC back. It seems Taurus’ escape and the PC's defection screwed up the mystical balance somehow, and the PC's replacement needs them back for his Big Evil Plan to work. So he binds her soul, infuses her with enough demonic power to get the job done, and sets her loose. The PCs' job in all of this would be to find a way to free her soul so they, Ladyhawke, and Taurus can face down the Big Evil together. Then, in the final confrontation, circumstances force Ladyhawke to go down in a blaze of glory to give the rest of them a chance to win.

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