Barristerminator — A New Gadget for ‘Better Angels’

Better-Angels-cover-v4-front-612pxWritten by Greg Stolze, © 2013

In Better Angels, demon-haunted supervillains can build superpowered devices from scratch to further their villainy. Here’s one ready to play.

What happens if you get caught, locked up and charged with crimes? Well, if you’re at all smart, you’ve already got a lawyer on retainer.  But wait: Why hire a lawyer if you can just build one in the basement? That way you never have to worry about trusting your secrets and humiliating defeats to a mortal. Mortals are squishy and weak—the hellbound know that if anyone does.  No, better to build an android that can argue law and which will have no urge to sleep with your wife or charge you billable hours for time spent waiting in the airport.

(Note: A ‘barrister’ is a type of lawyer.  Do not confuse it with ‘barista,’ a person who prepares and serves espresso.)

The Barristerminator (so named because its builder felt that the movie The Devil’s Advocate was only so-so) easily passes for human on the outside—it looks and sounds like a wry British man in his mid-fifties with a plummy Oxford drawl, and answers to Thomas Barnes-Bennet.  It can hold a pleasant (if somewhat vapid and scatter-brained) conversation, it can dress itself, and it is inhumanly conversant with criminal law.  Alas, its impersonation is only skin-deep. If physicall damaged, it reveals a substructure of whirring clockwork gears, each and every one carved from human bone.

An investment of 1 Knowledge gives the Barristerminator a 4d pool for Patient Knowledge legal shenanigans.  Four more points of Knowledge gives it +4 Advantage with its pettifoggery.  But as a five-point device, it needs two flaws.  Those flaws are ‘Fragile,’ leaving it conked-out if hit by any physical attack that beats Difficulty 3, and ‘Fuel-Hungry.’  In the case of Thomas Barnes-Bennet, to function it requires tears from an honest woman unjustly convicted in a court of law.