Greg Stolze Laughs a Villainous Laugh!
Wait, let's let Greg himself do it. Check out the video, where he answers a few questions from Better Angels supporters.
$9,000 Stretch Goal Achieved!
When Better Angels comes out it will be accompanied by a web app to keep track of characters online from your computer or mobile device. The app is already well into development and it's looking great. Thanks to your support it will be a reality.
Now, let's hit the next stretch goals. In fact, these things have been going so fast, we're going to go ahead and put up ALL THREE of our next goals, leading up to the biggest, baddest one of all: Better Angels as a full-color hardback!
$11,000 Stretch Goal — A Nefarious New Story
At $11K, Greg will write a new Better Angels short story to accompany the game's release. You can get a taste of Greg's Better Angels stories in "Esther Minges and the Villainous Nine" on the main project description page and in "Me, and Karish-Nephet the Defiler," which you can read in serial in the project updates. You can read a lot more of Greg's great stories on his website, www.gregstolze.com.
$13,000 Stretch Goal — Six Sinister Scenario Seeds
If we hit $13K, Greg will put together six short but sweet scenario starters to help kick off your Better Angels games. Each will be one or two pages with art by Todd Shearer, providing conflicts and twists that you can easily adapt to your own game.
$15,000 Stretch Goal — All the Colors of Evil!
This is the one we're waiting for, the one everybody has been asking about. At $15K, when we print the physical copies of the books they won't be black-and-white paperbacks, they will be FULL COLOR HARDBACKS. And you won't have to pay a dime more. Your pledge that was for a black and white paperback of Better Angels gets you a gorgeous color hardback instead.
So fire up your mind-control ray, turn it on all your gaming friends, and tell them — no, command them to back Better Angels. That hardback is already in sight.
And now, the story of poor Margie — I mean, the Serpent Princess— continues.
Me, and Karish-Nephet the Defiler, Part 3
I point at the bank teller and snap my fingers. “The ring.”
Her eyes get wide. “What?”
Oh bitch, don’t play dumb. Karish hates coy and I’m not crazy about it myself. Difference is, Karish will bleed it out of you.
“Your engagement ring. Put it in the sack.”
Make her put it in.
What, you’re a horse now? You want the ring, take the ring, let’s go.
I don’t care about the ring. I care about her choosing to part with it. I care about her fear.
I suppose I should be grateful. There’s a guy I worked with, has the same kind of thing. Only his evil spirit likes him to stack up dead kids like firewood and then leave cryptic hints to this one particular FBI agent. Still, this situation is not getting any better, so I grab the stupid tramp by her scarf and reel her close.
“You think your man’s going to stop loving you ‘cause you lost the ring? If he’s that much of a dick, I’m doing you a favor. Because if you make me kill you over this ring, it is not going to be all romantic like that stupid Sixties song…”
‘Earth Angel,’ I believe.
“This isn’t ‘Earth Angel,’ it’s just going to be your parents sobbing at your funeral about why you were too stupid to hand over a lump of carbon!”
She starts tugging. It’s stuck.
“Put your finger in your mouth,” I tell her, and then the ceiling cracks open.
# # #
Let’s talk about superheroes for a moment, ‘kay? I’ll start out by saying that, if you want to put your underwear on top and run into burning buildings, fine. Rescue people. I mean, maybe you’d do better if you hired on with the fire department and got training on how to pull a ceiling or do CPR. But whatever, follow your bliss. I don’t know. Could be there’s a psych screening for EMTs.
But most superheroes aren’t prying people out of car wrecks and aiding faltering swimmers, now are they? Or at least if they are they aren’t the ones you see on Fox News and CNN. No, there it’s all about crime-fighters.
Having forced my ex-boyfriend to sodomize my onetime sexual harasser, I do not have a lot of moral high ground to claim, but at least I never said I was a role model. I have never pursued, nor would I accept product endorsements, unlike that guy with the overgrown hatchet who shills for the body-spray people. I may rob and kidnap, but I’m honest.
Those self-righteous pricks with capes and masks? Frankly, they’re careless. Grandstanding puerile jerks, and I know that sounds pretty ironic coming from someone who says “submit and kneel” far more often than is strictly necessary. But I’ll tell you this for free. Anyone who dies in a fight with me? They died because I wanted it. I do not do collateral damage, not ever, none, zero, zilch. Can your goody-goody Tom Courage claim that? Nope. Destiny Crusader? Nuh uh. And those are the guys who, at least, feel bad about leaving trails of bystander bodies in their wake.
Sure, they like to put all the blame on the supervillains but last time I was up against Destiny Crusader, I actually pulled a guy out of the way when ol’ DC knocked a wall down. Did I rub his face in it? Oh sure, I made good and certain he knew that I was a bank robbing mind-controlling devil-bitch and still better at doing his job even when I didn’t want to. That’s how I got away. It was a close thing, too. That crazy moron can kick through buildings and he blames me for people dying when he tries to take a lick at me? Puh-leeze.
Don’t even get me started on all the ‘gritty’ heroes who treat their sociopathy like a Two-For-One coitus coupon with the rescue groupie of the day. There’s a guy in Arizona? His freakin’ nom de guerre is ‘Collateral.’ He teamed up with Body Count last month and went after a supervillain who was just as bloody-minded. I think that between the three of them they killed forty-two, injured at least a hundred, and demolished a police station, a parking garage and a Taco Bell.
I guess part of it is, you never know what you’re going to get. Some hypertrophic Boy Scout with dilated pupils and a martyr complex? Or some weirdo with heat vision and a personality like “Uday Hussein, LAPD”?
He’s almost here, Karish says in my head, about two seconds before the bank ceiling crashes down and some guy who looks like he’s barely post-pubescent strikes a pose in the wreckage. I’m tempted to point out the cameras so he can aim his puffed chest more accurately, but the guy who ran for the door earlier just got his ankle smashed, looks like, and he screams pretty loud before passing out. Crap. I really should have just let him bolt.
“So. Princess Python. I should have known it was you!”
Oh goody, he’s a talker.
To be continued.
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