Tuesday, July 12, 2011

"Keep 'em off the Streets"

I promised something quite different today.  I think this guy qualifies.  Just remember, heroes come in many forms, especially when random chance is involved.

The Dogcatcher
Stu Murphy

Prowess  5
Coordination  4
Strength  4
Intellect  3
Awareness  5
Willpower  6

Stamina  10
Determination  *

  Power (Possession)

  Teleportation 3
  Possession 3
  Mind Shield 3

  Motivation : Keep 'Em Off The Streets
  Epithet : Dog's Best Friend
  Catchphrase : "Who's A Good Dog?"

  Bad Luck
  Social : Public Identity

Point Total  38

Not everyone has what it takes to be a world-beater.  But that doesn't mean they can't be a hero.  Take Stu Murphy.  An ordinary, working-class Joe who had a decent job with Meridian's Animal Control Department.  Stu probably could've been a cop, but his heart was set on working with animals.  He was good at his job and developed a reputation as the guy who could handle the diciest situations.

A few years ago, this really got put to the test.  Something went wrong at EUREKA and a horror was let loose on the city.  A mutated dog, bigger than a Great Dane, and absolutely vicious, went on a rampage through Ordway Park.  With helpless bystanders trapped in the Rocket Ship, the Police called the superheroes, who told them to call Animal Control, and Stu was the first man on the scene.  Immediately, he moved to defuse the situation.

"Who's a good dog?  C'mon...who's a good doggie?  Hey buddy...leave those folks alone and come over here.  Want some hamburger?  How about we go for a ride in the car?  C'mon..."

The mutated beast took this in for a moment and approached Stu warily.

"Good boy...that's a good dog."

And then lunged at him, it's teeth tearing through his leather jacket like it was tissue paper.  Stu cried out, then fell over comatose.  The dog snarled and moved in for the kill...

And suddenly stopped, turned, and walked directly to the Animal Control vehicle.  It waited patiently for someone to open the back, then walked in.  As the gate was latched it went berserk again, and Stu returned to consciousness, vanished from where he was lying, and reappeared at a nearby ambulance, spooking the paramedics.

Meridian had just seen the birth of its newest superhuman.

Extensive tests at EUREKA revealed that while Stu's abilities were certainly superhuman, they weren't really powerful enough to make him want to quit his day job.  In fact, the ability to possess a dog or cat (or alligator or rampaging gorilla) made him even better suited for his job.  Stu still clocks in every day and works his shift, just like the other animal control guys.  But you can bet he's the first one they'll call when they have to deal with something weird.

While Stu could probably hold his own against normal people or even low-powered superhumans, his teleportation range is relatively short and his Possession less than a sure thing.  And he's just more comfortable using his powers around animals.


  1. Cool concept. Definitely one of those great recurring NPCs that would lend the setting some depth. Also, a lovely example of an extraordinarily gifted person, yet not completely superpowered.

    One edit: Stu appears to have become Stan by the end of the entry.

  2. Yeah, good catch there. Unfortunately, the ICONS Character Folio program occasionally hiccups and swallows text, which made keeping my continuity of thought difficult. I went back and fixed it.

  3. Love him. This is good, good stuff.