#1 Edited by ult_portrait (143 posts) - - Show Bio

[To submit questions or for basic OOC stuff please use this thread]

Sworn to king and country. Sworn to obedience. Sworn to march without questioning, without ceasing, without falling. Sworn to fight those with whom there is no personal feud, to strike back at the gestalt mind of the Enemy. This is the duty of a soldier. If you cut them, they’ll bleed the colors of the flag…or be dubbed Traitor. You can be certain that the foundations of peacetime are built upon the foundations of these brave soldiers. And so…

It is naturally of interest to a soldier when the seat of power is up for grabs. For those who can watch from afar from the comfort of recliners, or listen to insignificant grumbling on the radio, the Leader is merely a figurehead. Politics move so slowly, ways of life are rarely changed. But for the soldier…change brings the smell of napalm and death on the air.

And now the seasons changed again, the throne of the United States nearly vacant. Two challengers had clawed their way to near victory…Atticus Blair an official in the Nippon government. Orpheus Ziev, representative to the United States Senate (Kentucky). Atticus had been actively campaigning for a while now, making himself trusted among the populace. Orpheus…was opaque. He hadn’t even appeared publically since announcing his candidacy, though his posters were still everywhere. Though mystery did sell papers.

One troubling thing…one very troubling thing…both Atticus and Orpheus had failed. Atticus Finch was unable to save an innocent man’s life. The musical Orpheus’ willpower gave out at the last moment condemning his love to cold death. And to a being like Portrait, Project Picasso, constructed herself from what most would consider fiction, this was very troubling indeed.

So she had taken matters into her own hands. Portrait would be questioning the candidates personally…their first official debate to be precise, hosted by the anti-government organization, Fox Company. Well, it HAD been anti-government, but most of the members had long since gone their own ways, and with Mark XV gone the military born-and-raised Portrait had made some changes around here.

The main chamber, where the team used to assemble to get missions, had been converted into a stage…two podiums, American flag backdrop, the whole ten yards. But behind the flag was a teleporter pad that would allow access from Earth, and the podiums could be turned into escape capsules and jettisoned in case of an emergency. There were monitors and cameras everywhere, but the great window that allowed a view into space had been left untouched. Portrait had changed all the access codes this morning. She had also booby-trapped all the other areas of the base to keep away any of her teammates who might be less than happy with political debates…or take it as an excuse to try an assassination attempt. Well, if the Escher structures laced throughout the base didn’t keep them away, nothing would.

The candidates would be here soon now. Portrait leaned against the window, and searched for a horizon she knew she would never find. She thought of her own world, unreachable now…that b@stard Io had made sure of that. All she had was a comms unit that was slowly running out of power. And one set of standing orders: keep this world safe…though any means necessary.

The teleporters buzzed, then flashed into life. Particles aligned and reformed, and it was time to begin. Cameras began to roll automatically, sending a broadcast down to Earth.

Portrait spun around, snapping into a salute. “Welcome. I am Colonel Persephone Gray, identification number 011235813, agent of the United States Military, division N.Y.A.R.L.A.T.H.O.T.E.P, subdivision Project Picasso. It is an honor to have you here today. Mr. Blair. Mr. Ziev,” she nodded at each of them, still standing at attention. She was dressed in a colorful military camouflage, her official uniform back at home. Her weapons were concealed to keep the candidates at ease…but there would be no need for bodyguards today. Medals jingled on her coat lapel. She dropped the salute, standing at ease with her hands behind her back. “We will be following the standard rules today…no punches below the waist,” she quipped, trying to put the candidates at ease…or maybe just herself, “no talking out of turn, follow the given time constraints, and please refrain from mudslinging, both literally and figuratively.” Not that there was any mud here, of course…Eagle Eye had top of the line air filtration, and was spotless. “Questions will be sent in from Earth, and will appear on the monitors. They have been screened by appropriate officials Earthside.” As she spoke, several animated spokespeople appeared on the screens…they would be asking the questions, gathered from around the country. The simulacra were blocky and primitive, falling far within the uncanny valley. But they would do. “Gentleman, let us begin, Mr. Blair, would you like to start?” One of the simulacra moved jerkily and began to speak in a heavily synthesized voice.

The first steps had been taken on the Yellow Brick Road leading to the presidency.

#2 Posted by _Sojourn_ (19695 posts) - - Show Bio

Q: "Stance on abortion?" Question asked from Mercy...
A: I believe in the right for a woman to choose her own health care decisions. But I also would love to live in a world where they are completely unecessary. If elected I would work to ensure that by equal pay for equal work, innovative and effective health care and overall communal support, that no one fears the very real consequences of child birth and rearing.

#3 Posted by Premonition (1384 posts) - - Show Bio

Traveling via teleporter was nauseating. It took every ounce of willpower not to show his weakness by loosening his tie and leaning against a wall until his inner ear stabilized. As it was, he worried that he looked a little green even though his tan. (Obtained via tanning bed…the official reports said he had been in the Democratic Republic of Congo or some such dump, building houses or fighting war crimes or something, maybe stopping Kony. And then he had been ‘helping farmers’ in his hometown so as not to seem distant. The truth was that he had been busy building his reputation as the hero Ambriel, which was a bit of a long story, and which the public could absolutely never ever know. A little telepathic suggestion made the humanitarian stuff seem like the truth to the masses). This was not quite as calculated a move as he would have liked…his campaign had been left largely unattended as far as anyone else could tell. Though he had to admit, he had gotten a lot of ink for that, which was as good a campaign strategy as any, he guessed. This debate would be his first public appearance since he announced his candidacy, and he had to make a good impression.

As he walked up to the podium (he had been forced to choreograph this well ahead of time…it would not do to overshoot or walk into the podium just because he couldn’t see it) he waved at the cameras, and smiled his biggest, corniest, Kentucky smile. He felt like an idiot.

And why the hell was the debate being held IN SPACE?!

Q: "Stance on abortion?" Question asked from Mercy

A: “Abortion should only be legal in cases of danger to the mother, rape, or when a parent or family is absolutely incapable of supporting a child.” His voice was a midwestern drawl, an accent he had practiced for a long time. It made him seem friendly, open, and ‘country’, without questioning his intelligence. That was how he saw it anyway. “There are many, many children in the world who will grow up to do great things…and there are many who might have, but were never given the chance to do so when their life was cut off before they were even born.” He smiled awkwardly. “Take me for example…my parents knew I would be blind about two months into my mother’s pregnancy, and I was very nearly not born. They thought I wouldn’t amount to anything. But look at me now, I have a chance to be president of the United States!”

#4 Edited by _Sojourn_ (19695 posts) - - Show Bio

Q: For what benefit would the people of this country have to have you as their leader?

A: I believe whole heartlessly in my ideas. I believe that our fundamental beliefs as a country must be augmented in order to wean ourselves from the destructive nature of our own past ways. With me as president, I will put forth an agenda of progression, and innovation. We will be a brand new people!

#5 Posted by Premonition (1384 posts) - - Show Bio

Q. And you Mr. Ziev? How would the country benefit having you as their leader?

A. "I know the plight of the people...from the gutters to the penthouses, I've felt their pain." Orpheus clutches the side of the podium, leaning in toward the audience doubtlessly entrapped by their televisions. "I've searched my own soul in faraway places, and I believe I've found the essence of humanity. I know what we all want, what we all NEED." And of course, by 'soul searching in faraway places' he meant 'assassinated Kim Jong-Il and got a boatload of money' and other such glorious antics...but everyone blamed that on the mysterious villain Premonition of course. "I mean to bring our country back to the basics...create jobs by cutting out foreign imports, improving military strength," He would have liked to see how the militaristic moderator reacted to that, but he needed to focus on his speech here. No time for telepathic probing. "and through this taking back what is rightfully ours, but which has been stolen away by foreign hands...I will bring us back the American Dream".

#6 Posted by _Sojourn_ (19695 posts) - - Show Bio

Q: To better understand the needs of the hero community how would feel about appointing a meta human cabinet member? That would work as a delegate between the government and hero community.

A: Atticus had been expecting a question like this. He'd poured himself over it, trying to decide if he should be honest. "Ive always found, and have come to believe that experience is the best teacher. But as always the best person will receive a job, like in any workforce. Appointing someone without radicalism, or an over abundance of affection for the meta community is key. That person may be part of it, or a non powered citizen. Balance is the key that will forge my decisions for cabinet office choices." All eyes, everyone would decide for themselves what the truth was. As always he had chosen his words very carefully in order for latitudes to be almost non existent.

#7 Edited by Premonition (1384 posts) - - Show Bio

Q: To better understand the needs of the hero community how would feel about appointing a meta human cabinet member? That would work as a delegate between the government and hero community. Mr. Ziev, can we just assume that you know which questions you're supposed to answer? I feel like a parrot asking everything twice.

A. This was dangerous ground...if his identity was ever discovered, he would be incriminating himself here. "Meta-humans are dangerous." He held up a finger to silence the arguments of his invisible audience. "They are dangerous, but that doesn't mean they cannot serve our country. I think we can all agree it would be disastrous if a telepath, say, was appointed in such a position. Or a radioactive, or explosive meta. But if a meta went through extensive training, and their loyalties were absolutely known, they could prove invaluable. It is well known that the hero community largely ignores the powers that be, and having one of their own on the inside might change that. And there are numerous opportunities for more dangerous metas to prove themselves and serve their country."