Wardens Fourth Edition
In the Court of Public Opinion - Stories
A look at what happened during and/or after Session 30.
Story - At the BayCoMa Festival
Game Date: 7/29/2006
Location: San Francisco, California
Prime pulls the heavily-laden red wagon through the packed masses of comics, manga and sci-fi fans as he wound his way to his booth. Behind him, Lieutenant Harvis struggles along with a massive cardboard box clutched in both arms through the packed aisles of the Bay Comics, Manga and Sci-Fi Festival.
As soon as they reach the booth, Prime scampers up the wall and hangs up a brightly colored banner proclaiming in large bold letters, 'Space Prime: Secrets of the Galaxy Role Playing Game' and in smaller letters 'All aliens are based on actual alien races that have enslaved or exterminated humanity in nearby alternate dimensions.' Prime peruses the banner. That should get the attendees' attention, he thinks, as he begins unpacking the newly printed rulebooks and colorful plastic miniatures.
Prime whistles happily as he works, but Harvis seems oddly nervous. The good lieutenant whispers over, "Are you sure we should be doing this? I mean, what if one of these alien races finds out? Won't it offend them to know we have made a game out of killing them?"
Prime waves away his concerns with a paw, "Trust me. If any of these things actually exist in this dimension and learn of our existence, that would be the least of our problems. Now, go set up the video monitor so we can run the promo. Besides, look around you. Sure, these folks might be dressed up in silly costumes, but among them is the next generation of scientists and inventors. The sooner they get into the habit of pondering how to fight hostile aliens, the better off the Earth will be once one of these things actually invade. How did you think I convinced General Hearthstone to go along with this plan in the first place?"
Harvis considers a moment as he tries to figure out which alien miniature is supposed to be holding the strangely shaped rifle. "Um, I just thought our department needed the cash to help fund the deep space sensor array. The PR value didn't even occur to me."
Prime nods smugly, "Well, that's why I'm the super-genius... Darn. I did it again. This whole being humble thing is a lot harder than it looks. Oh, look at the time. Man the booth while I run over to do a quick interview for the local science fiction cable access channel!"
Prime hops onto the ceiling and scampers over to the makeshift 'studio' at the edge of the convention hall before dropping back down to the floor. He quickly brushes his paws over his new 'super patriot' costume and confidently strides over to the waiting folding chair and hops on board. He smiles at the young Asian woman sitting across from him. "Am I late?"
The reporter smiles back and replies, "No, you are just in time. We go on the air in three, two, one - and go!" With that, she smiles and announces, "I'm Rebecca Mong and with me today is the renown crime fighter, long-standing member of the Wardens and only known alien-enhanced paranormal, Prime. Now, the first thing our viewers want to know, is what is the true story behind that press conference you held last week. Where did the alien artifact that you claim gave you your powers come from?"
Prime chuckles, "Well, originally from outer space, but it crash landed in the Amazon some time ago. It is a fantastically powerful energy source with the ability to, oh, I suppose you could say it can 'flex' dimensions. I theorize it was used to bend space to allow faster-than-light travel between stars."
Rebecca waits for Prime to finish, then follows up with, "And how do the good people of America know that you aren't an alien yourself? After all, if an alien became stranded in the Amazon, wouldn't he try to disguise himself as a native life form and, well, you do rather resemble some of the primates native to the area."
Prime's eyes narrow instantly, "I do NOT look like a monkey. That is a vile slander. Any resemblance is superficial at best. Besides, if you recall, I did not make my first appearance in the Amazon but right here in San Francisco."
Rebecca nods slightly as if pretending to agree then interjects, "As I recall, you initially claimed to be a research assistant named Johan Doyle - but a very human Mr. Doyle later returned from his trip to the Amazon to publicly claim you stole his identity. Why shouldn't folks believe that you are really an alien who observed the real Mr. Doyle in the Amazon and simply assumed his identity to avoid immigration problems when traveling to America?"
Prime glances around nervously, his paws shaking slightly as he tries to explain, "Look. I really am, er, I mean I really was Johan Doyle. I'm not quite sure who the other Johan Doyle is but I've been tested extensively and I really am native to this particular dimension."
Rebecca quickly pounces on the opening, "Native to this dimension, yes. But what about native to this planet. Is your DNA fully human?"
Prime blinks in surprise as he stutters, "Well. Not entirely. See the radiation from the artifact caused widespread mutation in my DNA and..."
Rebecca adds, "So your DNA is partly alien? How do we know you aren't a human-alien clone created by the same aliens who manufactured this artifact of yours"
Prime cringes back in his seat, as he whimpers, "Er. I suppose you don't... Maybe you could just trust me?"
Rebecca turns to face the camera, "And that concludes our time for today. Join me next week for my exclusive interview with the writer of the convention's hottest comic book series."
As the red light on the camera fades, Rebecca smiles at Prime again, "Thanks for the killer interview. That'll keep our commentators busy for days. Alien or human, you seem like a nice fellow, so I'll ask them not to be too rough on you."
Prime slumps down in the chair, mumbling an exhausted, "Thanks. I guess..." Before sliding off the chair and stumbling back to his booth. When Harvis greets him with a cheerful, "How'd it go", Prime merely growls back, "Don't even ask," before returning to hawking his books.
The next day, a crowd has already gathered around his tiny booth by the time he arrives. Before Prime can even start his sales pitch, hundreds of questions about outer space begin to be shouted in an indistinguishable mass. Prime claps his hands over his sensitive ears then shouts over to Harvis to empty out the wastebasket and start handing out pens and scraps of paper.
Prime climbs atop the booth's table and shouts loud enough to just be heard over the background noise, "If you have a question for the all-knowing Prime, write it down and put it in the basket. You may submit one question for each item you purchase from our booth. Once you quiet down, I will answer seven questions by random draw."
Prime scampers back down to his elevated stool and waits as the noise dims to a dull roar. He turns to Harvis and sighs, "It is going to be a very long day. I guess these folks all think I'm some sort of all-knowing Yoda."
Harvis can't help quirking a half-smile as he notes, "Well, you certainly look the part."
Prime merely grimaces as he tells him, "Yeah right. Why don't you start reading off the questions. Let's get this over with."
Q: "How many planets have you visited?"
A: "Um. Two I guess."
Q: "Do you know the cure for cancer?"
A: "Hmmmm. Well. I suppose technically I know the cure for all known human diseases, how to regrow lost limbs, and the secret of immortality. But it requires the alien artifact that the Wardens' recently turned over to the United States government to work and there are some significant side effects."
Q: "Do you have any knowledge of alien technology?"
A: "Um. Well. Technically, I suppose I do. It's a little complicated to explain, though."
Q: "Are you here to lead humanity into a new golden era of peace and prosperity?"
A: "Er. Sure. I guess. Why not?"
Q: "Do you like bananas?"
A: "Oh. You know that's just... of all the questions you could possibly... fine. Yes, I like bananas. Are you happy now?"
Q: "Why didn't you turn over the alien artifact to the United Nations?"
A: "That corrupt band of incompetents? I wouldn't trust them to change a flat tire, much less with the secret of traveling to the stars. Um. Besides, that wasn't really my call. I think it was the Knight that actually turned it over. I should probably look into that actually...
Q: "Do you have a spaceship?"
A: "Not yet. But I plan on building one soon as I can find the time."
Prime pauses to take a sip from his cola, then announces, "Okay, that's all the questions for today. Be sure to stop by tomorrow to try your luck again."
Record Last Changed Date: 10/26/2008
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