Tales from days past, from days of Paragon City go here. This is a reminder of where we've been.


Postby Static Bolter » Mon Apr 29, 2013 9:04 pm

Originally posted by the Noisebomb: November 12, 2009

[An unmarked cardboard box rests safely on the large meeting room table. Its flaps are left open to assure anyone who thought the security scans of the Citadel were inefficient or wrong. A small Sony Handycam® rests inside, along with a mini-DVD. The DVD has been written on several times, each word omitted. The person who made the DVD had some trouble thinking up something to name whatever this video was. He settled on one simple word:]



The first few seconds are entirely chaotic. After fumbling for a good spot for the camera, the man setting it up finally seems happy with his decision. He strides quickly across the room and stares into the camera for a good minute and a half. He's a winsome sort, with boyishly good looks and almost absurdly well-maintained hair. He scratches his long, strong chin thoughtfully as he stares down the camera. His jaw clenches and un-clenches, as if trying to find just the right words to say. He manages to get his mouth open a few times, before frowning and rubbing the bridge of his nose in frustration.

"I thought this was going to be easy, y'know?" the man says searchingly, as if the Handycam® would answer him. "Sorry. I'm trying to condense everything I ever want to say into one last speech."

"You might not recognize this face, but I am the NOISEBOMB!" he says triumphantly, adding a dulcet, good natured chuckle. "And I've been searching for a way to get my voice back for a while now. I didn't want to keep hero-ing forever. I have...I have dreams. I have ambitions. I really love the work we do, and the thought of every life I'll save and every criminal I'll send to jail is motivation enough for me to get through the day."

"I've been a live test subject for the now-defunct Parthenon Pharmaceuticals. They were offering a genetic neutralizer for mutants that could strip me of my powers so I could, er, so I could talk again; sing again," he continues. He raps his fingers on his knee nervously. "I found out today that they've been keeping mutants like me hostage if they couldn't get them to comply willingly. It's because they weren't trying to reverse harmful mutations. They wanted to wipe us from the face of the Earth! It was a cover-up for some...some supremecist organization. They played me like a guitar."

"I was stupid, or hopeful, or both I guess. I try not to think of the lies I'm fed day-to-day. I believe that every person is good at heart," the Noisebomb says, almost whispering the last sentence. "It's why I will never take a life. There's always a road to redemption. Always. And I guess that's why I really wanted to be a normal human again. I wanted my chance at redemption."

"Deep down, I'm not a good person. I'm a sleaze. I'm a womanizer. I'm petty. I drink, and I fight, and I party. Given the option of saving a life or screwing a model, I'd probably take the model. My mutation keeps me on the straight and narrow. No one wants to hang out with someone who can't speak normally, looks hideous, and can't smile without making kids cry. I guess I think that the Noisebomb makes me a worthwhile person. But like a lot of you, I'm not just the Noisebomb. He's a mask I hide behind. If he's a good person, who says the man underneath it all isn't either?"

"I wanted a second chance! I wanted to prove that it's not the Noisebomb that makes me worthwhile. I had to show myself that it was the other way around; that who I am, that what I think,feel and do, that's what makes the Noisebomb worthwhile. I wanted to know if I needed the Noisebomb, or the Noisebomb needed me. What powers the machine? What keeps the clock ticking? I can't just flip a switch anymore, though. I keep...mutating. I keep getting louder, and I keep getting stronger. The hour's already coming where I can't speak without hurting someone or something. By the time you finish watching this, I'll have mutated again. And I'll stay that way. Permanently."

"I'm not going to be a great leader. When I'm gone, I'll be just another name in the registry, another has-been, another casualty! People like Black Starbeam, Static Bolter, Mr. Mountie, Night Watchwoman, Warp Factor...they'll be remembered. I'm going to confess everything I think and feel, to as many people as I can before I lose my voice forever, so just in case someone talks about me one day, you can set the story straight. I guess I just...want people to know who I really was."

The man pauses and clears his throat. He runs a hand through his hair and shuffles uncomfortably as he considers his next words with extraordinary care.

"Black Starbeam: I wish I had your confidence. There are things you do that make my jaw drop. You never give up, never surrender. You're always so right and true. I guess you know what will happen if you ever relent. You're everything that a man is supposed to be. You really are my personal hero, Beam, and I'm sorry I gave you so much trouble before I went silent."

"Static Bolter: Beth, you're a rare person. You're kind, you're caring, you're nurturing, and no matter how much you blush you're unabashed. You're brave! You attacked Dervish when she snuck into the Citadel. That was great. You'll always be the one I trust the most; the one I run to when there's trouble, or I need help. You're the beating heart of the Reciprocators!"

"Mr. Mundane: you're fearless. Or maybe you're not, but either way it doesn't matter. You've got nothing and yet you give it everything. You fought Lord Recluse with a shovel! I don't know how you do it. If I ever lose my powers, I hope I'll be as honourable as you."

"Cyberette: you're everything I want to be. You've got access to all of my powers, but you have none of my weaknesses. You're tougher than me. You're smarter than me. You're strong where I'm weak, and it's good to know that with all of the gifts and none of the curses, the person holding it all in the palm of her hands is still a good person. Maybe that's why I'm... attracted to you. You didn't need to try and grab a second chance to know who you are."

"Long Arm: don't lose yourself. You're golden, Elly. You've lost your memory, so I've noticed. You're in there somewhere. You're still noble, strong, and smart. Your sister's caused us a lot of trouble. I'm going to make it right somehow. If I can help you, tell me how."

"Yuki Frost: don't be too hard on yourself, and don't dwell on what those idiots at your school might say. Yeah, you're going to have your share of problems. Your social life will be far from normal. But that doesn't matter. You...kind of taught me that sometimes we have to go without things that we want to keep walking the straight and narrow. You're stronger than you think, and you make everyone else stronger because of that, too."

"Androgyne: I don't know where you are right now but I hope you're safe. You were a villain, but you turned away from crime and terror. It was you. You made me want to be Parthenon's test subject. I wanted to have the second chance you did! I guess...I guess I'll never get it. You've turned again but I swear I'll do whatever is in my power to bring you back home to the Citadel."

"Ron Clemens: thank you for serving our country, in the military and as a super hero. Happy Veterans Day."

"There's a lot of other Reciprocators, but I haven't seen them in a while, or I don't know them that well. You're the best heroes in this city! You don't rely on pomp, you don't need the moral high ground. What matters to you at the end of the day is that you've helped someone, that you made a difference, or that you ended a threat to life and liberty. That's why I chose to join this group and not any other. When the world's on the brink of chaos, you'll all be there to pull it away from the flames. Thank you all for teaching me how to resist; how to be defiant when there's nothing left to keep me going."

"And then there's me," he says, pausing awkwardly afterwards. "My name is Chad Jefferson, and I've been the Noisebomb since I was fifteen years old."

"I've come to the decision to not use any dampeners or any chemicals to cure myself of my mutation or tone my voice down. I'm not an animal, I'm not sick, and I don't need help. This is who I am; this is who I was born to be. It's not a curse! It's just a burden. We've all got one to bear, and I guess this'll just have to be mine. Don't let anyone confuse my silence for complacency. I'm burning to yell what I think. All the time."

Chad stands slowly and checks his wrists as if looking for an invisible watch. He crosses the room, hurried by something, and lifts the camera to look at his face from an awkward angle as he readies to turn off the recording.

"If it turns out all I can do is yell and shout, I'm going to scream until there's nothing left to scream about. Are those good last words?"

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Static Bolter
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