|PRT Classification||Mover/Master 5|
December 12, 2004|
|Callow E- | Zeitgeist C|
Zeitgeist is an established member of the local Wards, possessing a self-duplication power tied to his body's movement and a teleport where he appears to "rewind" himself. Recently returned from a stint with the Boston Wards.
Unmasked, Isaac is a brown-haired, green-eyed young man with a smattering of freckles. The features of his face are youthful but trending towards sharpness as he gets closer to maturity, and he’s armed with a smile that’s somewhere between charming and shit-eating more often than not. He stands relatively tall, at about 5’ 11". His build is moderate, neither thin nor stocky, and on the athletic end.
In costume, Zeitgeist's defining feature is the light-gray hooded cloak that drapes over his shoulders, with thin hexagon patterns across it. Under that, he wears a darker-colored mask which comes up over his nose, and a lightly armored bodysuit with a utility belt and plenty of pockets.
Equipment and Resources
- A utility belt.
- An elysian steel gladius, courtesy of Phalanx. One side is dulled while the other is sharpened. Painted silver and grey to match with his color theme. Handle has been modified to include a small crossguard. (see here for shape). This replaces his baton.
- Zip-tie Handcuffs
- Wards phone + Personal Phone, both password protected.
- A Swiss Army Knife
A Switch Blade(Replaced with a set of Karambits, courtesy of Cylynx)
- Stripped down first-aid kit (Pretty much just anti-septic, bandages, gauze, and needle+thread.)
- A comms ear-piece.
- A piece of paper, folded twice but with care so that it didn't get too wrinkled.
- Form-fitting, padded mask made of thick fabric that covers up over the nose and wraps around to the nape of the neck. Additionally, the piece that covers his throat has slash-resistant kevlar to protect against someone trying to slit it. Polycarbonate plates are sewn into the front of the mask for added protection. The covering is colored light gray, with the plates being slightly darker.
- An additional piece provides padding on the back of his head in case someone were to get the drop on him, but this is usually obscured by his hood.
- Zeitgeist also possesses a white ballistic mask with thin slits for the eyes that is built to fit over the covering, but it is meant to be used for a high-risk situation like a raid, as opposed to day-to-day, so he doesn't usually wear it.
- Full, gray, hooded cloak that drapes over his shoulders. Made of polymer-treated cotton, making it flame-resistant and durable. Also has a hydrophobic coating.
- Has a quick-release at the neck in case it were to get snagged or grabbed.
- Full, form-fitting bodysuit. The entire thing is lined with carbon fiber, both for stab resistance and to conduct electrical currents around him, instead of through him. This makes him resistant to moderate voltage shock weaponry, provided it doesn't pierce the carbon layer.
- Soft, Kevlar body-armor in incorporated into the costume over the vitals, providing level IIIa protection.
- The upper arms and thighs have additional layers of carbon fiber and kevlar to provide additional cut and stab resistance.
- A plate-carrier is worked into the front and back of the armor, but due to the additional weight it is not used except in high-risk situations. When in use, plates could boost the resistance of the armor to Level III or Level IV, depending on the variety used.
- A utility belt with several pouches and pockets (See: Gear).
- Gloves with polycarbonate plates worked into the knuckles to provide a more effective striking surface when punching.
- Sturdy, soft-soled shoes to assist in moving quietly.
Skills and Specializations
- Reasonable Athleticism.
- Hand-to-Hand skills, slightly enhanced by his tertiary abilities but still well within normal human potential.
- Decent understanding of physics and engineering, stemming from the career he wanted to go into before he triggered.
- Talented and relatively experienced liar.
- Can maintain calm under pressure.
- Actually a pretty good cook.
Isaac can be described as a relatively laid-back, lighthearted guy with a wannabe casanova streak, often making jokes or injecting sarcasm into a bad situation. While he's masked, he plays up a lot of these qualities, styling himself as the kind of cape to banter and snark with the enemy while fighting. For him, going out as a hero is an escape from his poor home life, and he might have a bit too much fun with it at times. Under that, though, he's a person with a strong moral compass and a borderline self-destructive sense of duty, more concerned about doing what he believes to be the right thing than what's expected of him.
Zeitgeist is a Master/Mover 5. His power can be best described as recursive self-duplication, as well as the ability to teleport to those duplicates.
Primary Power: Zeitgeist can perfectly recall the positions of his body (See: Tertiary Power). With a thought, he can choose a length of time of up to 10 seconds in the last hour to be "replayed" by a translucent duplicate, following his previous movements exactly. While these duplicates are active, they perform the actions that occurred over that length of time and then "loop", returning to the starting point and doing so again ad infinitum, until they are dismissed, or until they are out of Zeitgeist's range.
A few other rules also apply:
- Zeitgeist has a range of about 300 feet, outside of which the duplicates are immediately dismissed.
- The images are permeable to Zeitgeist and to each other, allowing them to move through each other. When impacting something/being impacted by something else, they transfer the appropriate kinetic energy and then disappear, looping again immediately. For example, if someone walked in the way of an image's punch, they would receive the punch with appropriate force as if Zeitgeist had punched them, and then the image would disappear. This applies to anything that comes in front of their path. If you were to throw a rock in the stride of a duplicate, it would be forced to loop each time it came to it, kicking the rock a bit each time. It should be noted that the duplicates break due to divergence from what he actually did in the loop (Punching someone would cause his fist to move slightly differently, etc), with a few split-seconds of a "grace period" to allow for the force to carry through, as opposed to directly breaking due to force. Practically, this is similar, but it may be affected strangely by certain power interactions.
- Aside from the above rule, the duplicates share all physical properties such as hardness and elasticity. An image could theoretically slow or stop a bullet as well as Zeitgeist himself could, for example, but it would only provide a fraction of a second of resistance to it, so it would likely not stop it completely (barring high-quality body armor).
- While images can overlap physically, their lengths of time cannot cross, so if he has an image of himself moving a minute ago, and it lasts 10 seconds, he cannot start an image 55 seconds ago, since the other image is occupying that time.
- Finally, Zeitgeist can only have 5 images going at once, after which he needs to dismiss some to create more.
Secondary Power: Zeitgeist can also teleport to a currently active duplicate, dismissing it and assuming its exact position. Due to his ability to create duplicates rapidly, and then use this teleportation ability before it is obvious that an image has been created, it can appear to others that he "rewinds" himself. However, due to its actual nature, this does not result in any sort of healing ability. This ability has a short cooldown, roughly a few seconds. When he teleports, he can semi-consciously determine what items come with him, though that function is primarily handled by his passenger, and nothing that he couldn't personally hold can be taken with him. He also cannot bring other people, due to Manton limitations.
Tertiary Power: Zeitgeist's shard archives all of the movements of his body and feeds it back to him as part of his power. As a side effect, he has a very fine kinesthetic sense and memory (He knows where his body is and has been to a nearly flawless level of detail, which is necessary to manage his power) as well as an improved sense of timing, which greatly increases his ability to coordinate with his images and provides a marginal advantage in combat.
EVERYTHING BELOW THIS LINE IS REALLY MESSY, LONG, AND PROBABLY NEEDS A REWRITE, AS A HEADS UP.
I’d taken to patrolling the bad parts of town. More crime, more people that needed help. The sounds of a struggle coming from an alley usually meant both. Peeking around the corner, I see a thin-looking guy being pinned to the wall by a larger, tattooed man holding a knife to his throat. Another guy rifled through the thin guy’s pockets while his friend held him there. I was wary of thin corridors after last time, but I wasn’t sure I’d be able to get around it in this case. Unless…
I swing my baton near the opening of the alleyway. As I’d hoped, they’re too focused on the guy they’re mugging to notice. I put the nightstick away, then kick a nearby metal trash can. An unmissable clank reverberates through the surroundings. I press myself to the wall and hope that they’re dumb enough to take the bait.
A mumbled conversation later, I hear footsteps coming towards me. I trigger my power and the man who was picking the guy’s pocket is clotheslined by my duplicate when he reaches the opening of the alley.
In that instant, I pivot around the corner, grabbing his collar and pulling him back towards me as he reels. The looping image of myself hits him again. I bring up my other arm to grab the side of his face and force him into the opposite wall of the alleyway, smashing his head into it. Brick does a pretty good job of getting people to stay down, and sure enough, he crumples as I let go of him.
“You’re the first guy to die in a horror movie, you know that?” I quip as I step over him. My cloak brushes across him as I spare a glance to make sure he’s still breathing, before turning to the other guy.
Much to my dismay, the larger of the pair has flipped the muggee… muggee, is that a word? The guy being mugged has been flipped around so that the tattooed man can keep the knife on his throat, now facing me. Oh, great, a hostage situation.
“Don’t take another fuckin’ step!” He shouts, pulling the knife a bit closer to the thin man’s jugular to drive the point home.
“Hey hey, no reason to be so aggressive…” I raise my hands in a mockingly placative gesture.*
“Get the fuck out of here!”
“Truly, a diplomat of your time. Alright, have it your way.” I throw my hands up, as if in exasperation, and shutter out of existence as I create an image just outside of the alleyway and teleport to it. I dismiss the image still swinging the baton at the opening of the alleyway while I’m at it.
I lean against the brick, cross my arms, and start counting down the seconds until my teleportation comes back.
At ten, I’m suddenly back where I’d left off. He hadn’t bought it completely, already making him smarter than his friend, but he’d lowered the knife a bit and was looking around cautiously. At that moment, I surged forward and wrapped a hand around the hand with the knife, jerking it down, and struck him in the face with the other.
He looked stronger than me, and my images weren’t the best at holding things because of how they broke, so I shifted my punching arm to wrestle with the knife as well, leaving a duplicate to keep hitting him in the face, duplicating the punch. His choices at this point were to stay here, getting pummeled in the face, or to move his arm from the hostage to do something with it.
He chose the latter, pulling his arm around to grab for the knife. I pulled to the side and moved forward, getting my elbow behind the thin man and nudging him a bit behind me. It didn’t move him much, but he got the memo and made a break for it.
I left the image that was punching, we’d moved enough that it wasn’t hitting him anymore but it would be useful later. I fought with him for the knife. He was winning, but I just needed to buy time. I rotated around as I was struggling with him so that I was on the opposite side of him that I was. Around that point, he broke the grapple and stabbed at me. I shifted to the left, but he grazed me with it, a red line appearing on the side of my right shoulder. It didn’t feel serious, but a little lower, a little deeper and it could have hit an artery if my knowledge of anatomy was right. I was getting sloppy.
Just then, my teleportation came back up. I raised up my leg at an awkward angle, teleported to the image that was still punching, and tackled him from behind. Just before I hit him, I made an image where I had my leg raised up, just over a split-second, so little time that it appeared to be stationary. I took him to the ground as he tripped over it, and I raised a hand to shove his head into the pavement, soon after making an image to repeat the motion as I pinned the arm with the knife. A couple of cycles later, I was able to get the knife out of his hand and dismissed the images. He was concussed enough at this point that I was able to zip-tie his hands with minimal resistance, and I pocketed his knife for good measure, they wouldn’t miss it.
I glanced behind me, the other guy had started to get up and run. I waited for just the right moment before creating an image of myself from when I threw him into the wall. He hit the brick again and went back to the ground. I dismissed it. It’s a good thing I was careful not to hit him too hard earlier, or else the image would have used the same force. I was fairly sure I didn’t do any permanent damage, though.
I let out a breath. I stood up, zip-tied the other guy, and called the police with one of their phones. I winced. The cut on my shoulder started to throb as the adrenaline began to wear off. Bandages, I thought, I’ll bring bandages next time.
That’s when I saw her, standing at the entrance of the alley, clad in bronze armor. She looked about my age, a fact I appreciated, but probably wouldn’t admit. That being said, she was obviously a cape.
I had the feeling that this was going to be a long night.
You hit the button on the tape recorder, and two voices in the middle of a conversation sound to life.
“-psyche review? I get the questions and all of that, and the stuff about my trigger is just natural to ask a new cape, but why everything about my past?” A male voice says in a casual tone.
“I want to get a good idea of who you are, Isaac, not of your powers. The rest of the Wards will help you with that part, figuring out who Zeitgeist is, but I’m more concerned about you. You don’t have to tell me, but I can help you better if you would trust me with it.” Another voice speaks, this time female. There’s the soft clack of a clipboard being placed on a table. “If it makes you more comfortable, we can keep it off of the records.”
“No no, it’s alright, I guess I just don’t know where to start.” He pauses "I wouldn’t say that I had everything I could ever want, but I had anything I could ever ask for. Loving, middle-class parents, a little sister to tease and make fun of, I was relatively popular, I had a good academic future ahead of me, I wanted to go into structural engineering. The mundane kind, don’t worry I’m not going to pull a tinker power out of my ass or anything. Things were good.
"…and then they weren’t. It was a car crash, a drunk driver came out of nowhere, nothing we could have done. My parents and I got out with minor injuries, dad broke his arm if I remember right, but uh, my sister died on impact. That wasn’t my trigger, though, it was just all kind of downhill from there. My folks blamed me for surviving when she didn’t, I think, got all distant, took it out on me, on each other. They got divorced about a year after that, and I took it all pretty hard. My grades suffered, I stopped going to school, stopped keeping up with friends or practicing boxing like I used to. I was in a rut, I wanted so badly to go back to before, I felt like my parents weren’t my allies anymore, I felt alone. It all came to a head one night when I was staying with my dad. We got into an argument over something stupid, but it came back to Tess, my sister, and I said something I really probably shouldn’t have. He hit me, and that was the straw the broke the camel’s back.
“I felt like I was really just on my own, like it was up to me to fix myself, that no one would help me get back into things, and the worst part? I was failing. I was alone, but myself wasn’t enough to fix that. In that moment, I wanted to either go back to before or to just run from it all and start over. In a twisted kind of way, I guess I got both. In that instant, I was aware of where I was a few minutes ago, by the door. I decided to run, not to lean into what I felt, and it was a damn good thing too or else my dad would have found out about the powers. He lost joint-custody after that; mom wasn’t much better but at least she would leave me some space. I, uh, didn’t tell her about the whole”powers" part, in case you couldn’t tell, and I really fuckin hope you don’t make me, but we’ll cross that road later I guess.
"From there, well, a part of me hates to say it but I was excited. I had powers, I could do something. It was that start I was looking for. I threw together a costume and went out a couple of nights later. I found a bunch of thugs because that’s what I thought heroes probably did, challenged them, and got the shit beaten out of me because I was a stupid 15-year-old who just got powers and had never been in an actual fight. I got out, but I had to tell my mom that I fell down a bunch of stairs because my face was bleeding. There was something weird about it, though. That failure, it didn’t feel like an insurmountable barrier like it had in the past, I could see what I did wrong, what I could improve. I picked back up boxing, started running and lifting weights, getting in shape. I had a purpose. I kept up with that a few months, I like to think that I got pretty damn good at it, started to get a hang of my powers, my strengths. I gave it another try, and I won that time, different guys. Beat them up and left them zip-tied. Then I won again against the guys from a couple months ago, then I lost, I got cocky, but I got the girl they were mugging out of there, learned from it, then I went back for them, etcetera.
“Then, couple weeks ago, I ran into Good Samaritan out at night. Believe it or not, that was when it dawned on me that what I was doing was blatantly illegal. I uh, never claimed to be the kind of person that thought things through. She didn’t arrest me though, pointed me here. She was convincing. Seemed like a good idea, and well, here I am.” He finishes.
You stop playing back the recording.