Better Angels: Guts and Brains of the Villainous Nine

Written by Greg Stolze and illustrated by Kurt Komoda, © 2014

Brian “Brains” Ornichowski took up the cape and mask because he felt he had no choice.  The love of his life, Griselda Jackson, had become a vigilante because, clearly, no one else gave a damn about their hometown of Detroit, where he was an inner city schoolteacher and she was a municipal accountant railing against waste and corruption.

Griselda was approached by General Null, offering to give her all the power she needed to put a real scare into the mayflies of political patronage.  He was quite upfront about the risks and costs, however.  She would, literally, be dealing with the devil.  He was poring through museums and private collections to find demonic amulets, and he had one that would make her unbelievably tough.  She signed up and brought along this shy schoolteacher who’d asked her out to coffee after she interrupted a schoolboard meeting to shout “Sit’cher ass down and shut’cher mouth up!” to a citizen who was rather disrespectfully arguing against teaching Darwin’s theory in school.

What no one knew was that the demons instilled in Griselda and Brian were, themselves, passionate lovers.  Brian finds this perfectly delightful.  Griselda, who never really reciprocated his adoration, is far less comfortable with the ‘foursome’ possibilities.  But compared to burning down an orphanage to keep her monster happy, negotiating for cuddle time with a man who respects and loves her seems pretty benign.

If only she hadn’t met a man who really turns her on…

Better-Angels---Guts-and-Brains

Brains

Outside the costume, Brian is a slender gentleman in his forties, biracial and tidy, but with a certain well-used shabbiness to his polo shirts and khakis.  He has a small goatee and mustache.

As ‘Brains,’ he wears a neon-green bodysuit under a white lab coat.  When he activates his ‘Flame-Wreathed’ Aspect, it looks like his head bursts open and fire shoots out of his exposed brain.  (The rest of his body doesn’t have naked flames, but is surrounded by writhing heat-haze.)

CUNNING 4, PATIENT 3
Greed 2, Generosity 2
Espionage 3, Knowledge 3

SLY 1, OPEN 1
Cruelty 0, Courage 2
Cowardice 2, Endurance 1

DEVIOUS 3, INSIGHTFUL 1
Corruption 1, Nurture 2
Deceit 2, Honesty 1

POWERS: Alchemy, Arrogance

ASPECTS: Ghost Form, Flame-Wreathed

PRIMARY SINFUL STRATEGY: Cunning

Guts

Griselda is a curvy, short black woman with miniature dreadlocks, killer cheekbones, and intense brown eyes that look like they could power a small suburban condominium.  She usually wears bright pantsuits, but when running around doing crimes as Guts, she favors a voluminous set of black coveralls.  This is because the form her Armor power takes is roll after roll of flabby, pendulous  fat.  When she activates either (or both) Aspects, her skin turns a bright, leathery green and her face deforms into a toadlike monstrosity.

CUNNING 2, PATIENT 1
Greed 1, Generosity 1
Espionage 2, Knowledge 2

SLY 3, OPEN 3
Cruelty 3, Courage 2
Cowardice 2, Endurance 3

DEVIOUS 2, INSIGHTFUL 1
Corruption 3, Nurture 1
Deceit 4, Honesty 1

POWERS: Armor, That Hideous Strength

ASPECTS: Carapace, Horned (in her case, a gaping frog-maw of fangs)

PRIMARY SINFUL STRATEGY: Sly

Better Angels cover

About Arc Dream Publishing

Arc Dream Publishing creates roleplaying games and fiction including Delta Green, Godlike, Wild Talents, Monsters and Other Childish Things, Better Angels, The Kerberos Club, The Sense of the Sleight-of-Hand Man, and the award-winning magazine of Cthulhu Mythos gaming, The Unspeakable Oath.