Wednesday, December 31

This tumultous year in review

What hasn't happened to my family? It was little over a year ago when I discovered my daughter had merged with another android in a rescue attempt and split/merged into two Qlippothics, one with the memories of Nova Sakigake and a second one with the original Qli's mind and the hardware of Nova's Dark Future. Then things really got weird.

Koen was confined to the basement of the Bloodwing Foundation while he was undergoing treatment for vampirism. He found the secret door to the Retroactive Continuity device and tried to undo the events that lead to his Embrace in the battle with Aleister Mason. To his credit, it worked, but the machine was flawed at the conceptual level, and my father at his asteroid base was exploiting that flaw to duplicate an army of Qlippothic drones for world domination.

Bloodwing made an effort to form relations with the Council, but it was his own arrogance that brought doom to his immortal legacy. He was banished from Steelhead just as it was expanding. He allied with Darkmere and scouted Artificial Isle prior to the Darkmere invasion. He found his rebuilt daughter, who had escaped from New Erebus and was searching for allies. Bloodwing thought her a traitor and captured her. During her interrogation in Drakmere he struck her in anger and breached her reactor core, exposing him to a lethal dose of radiation and lodging a shard of Qli's soul chip in his skeleton. As his life pattern fell apart, the shard of Qli's chip used what was left to replicate a new construct in Bloodwing's remains, which I dubbed Ash Mason Tumim and accepted as my son.

With the help of House Wulfenbach and Hotspur O'Toole, our family journeyed to the floating city of New Erebus. Sadly my design for my ship the Gygax was flawed, and I blew up the Foundation as I escaped the Earth's orbit. In the chaos of battle, Frau Lowey's demon aspect created a new lifeform, Amarantis Belfire, a gestalt of several members of the rescue team, and another proud addition to the Mason family. Ash was nearly disintegrated trying to save Koen, except for his soul-chip which seems to be indestructible. I created a new construct body for him.

Koen died before we could save him, but his Celestial Mother Sekhmet carried his spirit back to Heliopolis to regenerate. The original Qlippothic was made more powerful with Nova Sakigake's future technology, but she could not bear to sit idly by and wait two centuries for the Wormwood Comet to wipe out civilization and create the Hell on Earth she had already explored. She sought to destroy the comet by piloting New Erebus on a collision course with the comet. The Council denied her martyrdom and her soul-chip fell into the hands of Aleister.

Bloodwing, whose soul had returned to Erebus, convinced his father to reinstate him as Prince and send a fleet New Erebus to claim it for the Obsidian King. He betrayed his father and took the reigns of New Erebus himself, and ascended to godhood. He merged the city with the comet, and after bargaining with the Fates themselves to mend the rips in time his family had made, destroyed Erebus with the comet instead of the Earth. His sacrifice took King Hades and the Iron Citadel with him to Oblivion, throwing the Underworld into chaos. Bloodwing's sister Lumina assumed the title of Regent of the Bloodwing Foundation, a title which no longer interest me as I sought to break with the shame of my immortal ancestor's follies.

Upon return to Earth, I journeyed to New Babbage to help with an epidemic stemming from eating the tainted meat of a monstrous severed hand that wasn't quite dead. Miss Lily Nightfire and Miss Lulu Seetan offered their space at Novem as an emergency laboratory, and our friendship has grown all the stronger. (Remarkable since I did later accidentally blew up the club during an experiment, but then I was still a boy at the time.) The greater threat to Babbage was not a crate from a distant island but a handful of selfish souls who cared not if their egos tore their community asunder. After finishing my work, I took my practice back to Steelhead and helped my new friends rebuild their venue in Winterfell Laudanum, where they were welcomed with open arms.

Koen had shown Kiralette the power of her immortal self, but that became a liability as tiny feline with a temporary case of vampirism infected her. Despite being injured in attempt to inject her with an antidote, I was successful.

Speaking of vampires, Aleister tried to blackmail me by cutting off his supply of bloodwine, which is the critical ingredient of my Reanimation Formula. I refused to submit and purged the reanimation serum from body after using my remaining supplies to regenerate my arm. Due to Bloodwing's dealings with the Fates, the procedure did not go as planned. I found myself regressed to body of a young boy.

In my young form I proceeded to track my Firstbuilt, who had been turned into a Blood Doll by Aleister and changed her name from Qlippothic to Gematria. I might have succeeded in breaking her addiction to the bloodwine, had my brother Marcus (who had been kept a secret from me all this time) not been reanimated and unleashed his fury on the Eastern Seaboard. Add to this the sole surviving ship of Bloodwing's fleet (the Midas) took Marcus on as their captain made him a threat to be dealt with by the Mason, the Caledon Wrath Fleet, and Frau Lowey's mysterious Sisterhood.

Aleister and my family formed a truce in the shadow of this greater threat. Koen returned in a new life to rescue his sister. Gematria regained her sanity with the psychic manipulations of Frau Lowey her sibling, who was trapped in her tortured mind.

Aleister's turncoat dolls were purged from the Midas after they had slain the demon crew and drugged Marcus. In the power vacuum of the ship, the ghost of Jeremiah Mason, along with the rest of my deceased family tree, escaped from the crystal prison on board the ship and claimed it for themselves.

There is a section of this story that has not been written. I may never have the strength to tell you how Gematria and Koen were killed. Ash found Gematria's inert soul-chip in the wreckage. I am still working on a way to bring her back to life.

Marcus called a truce as he came to terms with having a brother he never knew and a life outside my Father's absolute control. He worked incognito with me at the Hospital, the only breach occurring while we both worked to save Dr. Alter's life.

I found Koen's charred remains, and breaking my promise never to use the Serum again I resurrected Koen. But his immortal self, the Vortex, had already returned to a higher plane. In Koen's third body only the neko lifecode regenerated. He is now purebred Bloodtail, complete with hand-claws. His only magic now what I had trained him in alchemy when I first took him in. With none of my blood left in him and angry at not being reborn whole he...disowned me. Last I heard he had taken a job as Ship's Cat with Fuzzball's time-travelling relative Purdie Uggleh.

I took a bullet for Fuzz while trying to protect him from an unhinged Jobias Barthelmess touting diplomatic immunity. I helped defuse a riddle-bomb in the Steeltopian embassy left by a "Gamesmaster", only to get blown clear from the building by a secondary bomb.

When I learned that Hotspur was kidnapped by the Dark Ocean Society, I joined a rescue team of Steelheaders and Caledonians. That story is still in serial publication.

And now, a botched summoning of Bloodwing in Belhaven nearly brought the Hydra's true form into this world, stopped only by my brother Marcus who was summoned there as a side effect of the misguided spell. He took advantage of the situation and installed himself as a member of the oligarchy there. He seeks to mimic my efforts in helping promote Steelhead, but what sort of town will rise from an infamous pirate's port with a mad half-demon Spark as its leader?


Baron K. Wulfenbach said...

Herr Doktor,

Amazing, that almost clarifies your history to date. Prodigious work!


Darien Mason said...

Almost? What did I miss?

Baron K. Wulfenbach said...

Not as much as missing anything (although I think Aleister's relationship was not clearly defined in summary) as the material is so complex it boggles even the very best attempt.

And I was there for large portions.

Darien Mason said...

Ah, that's easy. Aleister Louis Mason was the last member of my family to suffer the Bloodwing Curse, seven generations ago. He became a vampire to break the enchantment. He was an accomplished Spark (dated as his constructs may seem today) and a sorceror in his own right.

Rhianon Jameson said...

My head hurts!