|Civilian name||Tasha Golden|
Nepenthes recent emergence into the public eye is primarily monetarily focused. She has decided that holding down a ‘regular’ job with powers is going to be difficult especially given her ‘illness’ and as such is seeking cape related employment The events surrounding her trigger were public news, although the details of the biohazard outbreak are kept quiet, and most people think it was a fire or an explosion of some sorts. This was all about half a year ago, thus not in the public consciousness any more
Due to her power, her body is covered with thick dull, pale red vines. They penetrate her skin in many places, clearly winding through her flesh internally. Her head is mostly untouched externally, allowing her roughly neck night hair to follow freely and only occasionally get tangled in a vine. Her face is also mostly untouched, except for a few small red vines visible beneath the surface and a persistent leaf that grows from her left eye. She plucks it before it gets more than half a cm across. She stands at 5"6' tall, and dresses relatively smart in civvies. For a costume she wears a simple lab coat, as well as a stylish wooden mask. The mask is more of a protective measure than something to obscure her identity. After all, she can't turn off her physical changes.
Equipment and Resources
- Seed bombs
Skills and Specializations
- Sci-fi nerd, in particular older sci-fi. Think OG star trek and stargate
- Skilled botanist, both in practical terms and in scientific ones
- Has trained self defence, especially as of late in preparation for cape life
- Due to gardening, she is fairly strong. She tires easily but can heft stuff around
Generally leans good, she wants to help people but isn’t driven to do so to the point that she’s going to go out of her way to. She is still somewhat timid in fighting, a combination of her ‘illness’, a strong dislike of her power, and just plain inexperience. Due to her background she has been trained in how to handle herself in an emergency but well, the real world is far messier. She’s fairly friendly and outgoing with the people that she is close to, but she can struggle to develop friendships and to connect to people. She’s an introvert, far preferring to sit alone than to go out and ‘socialise’.
Primary power is the ability to create seeds from their skin which germinate and grow very rapidly in the presence of blood. They grow rapidly from seed into a plant, in the process growing roots and taking nutrients from their substrate. This could be a blood-soaked soil or flesh. A seed will only last for about a week or so before becoming non-viable. There are four distinct phases, each occurring over different time frames 1.
Takes roughly 3-5 seconds and over this timespan the plant grows from a seed, into a sapling, ranging from 10-30cm (controllable by the cape) 2. Over the course of a day or so, the roots will deepen and begin to burrow deeper into the flesh, and reach bone, key arteries and potentially organs. It's still possible to remove the plant at this stage but it is very painful and can be destructive 3. Over the rest of a week, the plant will mature and begin to flower. These flowers have no pollinator or seed disperser. (Ie, they are not an S Class threat). The plant will strengthen its grip, spreading out tiny branching roots. It's still localised, however removal has permanent loss of function implications. (Basically amputation/crippling limbs) From here on out, the plant will spread through the body, and removal of the plant will cause so much shock as to kill the host. Roots will intertwine with organs, and the plants will spread throughout the entire body. It is late in this stage that Nepenthes' is in. Removal of the plant can be done up until stage three. Just like ripping out a weed in a garden, simply pulling out the plant will macerate the flesh, and generally take chunks with it. If instead, you cut the plant off at the base, then it will die, but leave substantial roots behind. Regardless of the method used, there will be root residue left behind. This causes slower healing & long lasting pain due to the foreign material still in the wound and the root's attempt to keep growing.
Due to the rapid growth of the plant, and the aggressively degree it seeks out blood, the roots can possess high destructive forces in stage one. They can penetrate through armour, and crack solid objects. The smoother and more uniform the object or armour is, the harder this is to achieve. However if the roots can gain leverage, they are capable of penetrating bulletproof armour, cracking concrete and denting thin steel. Repeated applications of seeds and blood can destroy stronger or larger objects by attrition, although this takes concerted effort and time. It seems that this strength is most effective when there is blood on the other side of the obstacle, such as in body armour. The plant roots can somehow sense the blood and target towards it, much like trees and running water.
Due to her trigger event, Nepenthes' body is consumed by late stage 4 plants. Although her body has since healed around the initial destruction, she still experiences pain and fatigue issues. This is mitigated by her minor Brute power, which is a combination of effects from her plants and her power directly. This grants her regeneration, defence and strength bonuses. As her body is permeated with wood, it is incredibly tough, like that of a thick vine or tree. This is similar to that of regular wood, in that it won't stop a concerted attempt to hack her apart. She particularly resists blunt force, followed by slashing, with the least resistance against piercing attacks. Energy, plasma and heat based weapons, such as lasers, are barely mitigated, and generally affect her normally. Additionally she has a regenerative power of about twice that of a human, due to the speed at which the plants can repair themselves. Finally she has increased strength to resist things. She can't push something that's very heavy, but she could resist a car trying to push her. She achieves this by essentially locking the wood running through her body, making it immovable. She doesn't gain any extra defence when doing this.
Although this makes her physically stronger, and she has an increased pain tolerance, this symbiosis extracts a significant toll on her body. She has greatly reduced energy and stamina, and suffers from chronic pain. This inhibits her ability to do extended fights, if a fight (or strenuous activity) is lasting longer than about 15min or so she will begin to suffer greatly and her strength will wane. Of note, her face is a particularly weak spot. An ironic touch to the mercy that it was mostly left untouched, externally.
The main combat application of this power is the rapid and destructive growth via a germinating seed. Because she can quickly and easily generate seeds in her hands, her main method of attack involves drawing blood and plastering seeds onto it. She is functionally immune to her seeds growth, given how she's already consumed by it. If she cannot draw blood, then she does carry vials of rat blood, which she can use to stain someone and have the seeds crack or burrow through body armour.
Despite the parasitic and blood seeking nature of these plants, they are still plants. As such, they can be bred and spliced, with varying success.So far she has managed to develop a slow growing, but incredibly tough variety she is using to fashion armour and shields from. She hopes to be able to use this as a commercial avenue of sorts. The second main strain she has made is a fast growing and very dense version, much like a very thorny hedge of sorts. Combining these seeds with blood in a ball of sorts lets her smash the ball on the ground, to have cover grow rapidly, over the course of about 15 seconds.
She is working on some less violent or lethal varieties as well as alternative effects. She currently has a small Dendrocnide moroides that she is attempting to hybridise her seeds with. At the moment however, she doesn't have anything less… destructive.
Tasha grew up outside of Devilfish in Toledo, Ohio. All throughout growing up she was interested in the natural world, so it was only natural that she study science at university. She had already moved away from her parents at this point, so moving for better study seemed like a good idea. That and it was an opportunity to move away from her home town, to Minnesota specifically.
Her time at Winona University was characterised by her falling in love with plants and their complexity. She was fascinated by the way they defied all rules, especially those around reproduction and evolution. This enthusiasm quickly led her to a PhD, and then out into the real world. She was lucky to be offered a job at a newer lab, over in Devilfish. This time, the move was reluctant, but she couldn't turn down such an offer. It wasn’t until later that she learnt why this lab was paying so much.
It was about 8 months later that disaster struck, with the biohazard leak that killed a quarter of the lab staff that day. Everyone in the lab room was killed, with the exception of Tasha. She would have died too, if it were not for her triggering. In the wake of the accident she learnt far more than she wished to. The names of so many different pain medications. The goal behind the lab’s work. The intricate detail of her ruined body. So many insurance forms, and ways the companies cheat you.
Eventually, she had enough, and became somewhat of a recluse. That was 4 months ago, and in that time, well she had found her feet and ran out of savings. Much to her dismay, she had to change something in her life.