Malaise of Forethought
After a hostage-taking incident at the Challenger Museum by the New SinSquad International left two people dead, the team was called before Major Jeffrey Knox, head of EAGLES, and Senator Hiram Banks to explain their actions. Feeling their reputations on the line, they decided to search for the EMiR's deactivated radiation gun stolen from the museum and Lust of the SinSquad who got away. This search led the Squad to a PriceRight store in Hillsborough, NY where they found an almost-finished but empty EUREKA base beneath the store.
Eventually, the team reached the base's control center. When they all had entered, the doors to the control center slammed shut and a familiar face appeared on the large view screen: Major Jeffrey Knox. Knox revealed that not only was he behind the new SinSquad's attack, but that he was out to save America from corporations and special interest groups and return it to the people. Of course, to do so, he was going to need to destroy the current government. Knowing that his friend Challenger and the rest of SuperSquad America would object, he was getting them out of the way. There would be a new SuperSquad America, he said and at that point, a picture of the Black Squad in red, white, and blue uniforms appeared on the screen. Clearly, Knox was mad. As he bade good-bye, the Squad tried to find a way out of the control center but there was no escape. Suddenly, the room began to fill with gas, sonics, and other types of substances that had an increased effect on Squad members. Clearly, Jeffrey Knox knew them and their powers too well, as the whole team slowly drifted into unconsciousness.
When the team regained consciousness, they were still in the control center and a team of EAGLES agents was bringing them around. It was now three days later and Knox's treachery had become known, but he and his new SuperSquad (aka the Black Squad) had disappeared. Tracking Knox and his friends to a home he owned in the Catskills, the real SuperSquad America defeated them easily. Returning to their base, things continued to go well for the Squad: Diva was offered a guest-hosting spot on The View; Dianne seemed much happier; Bernie's former girlfriend (who he had broken up with because he didn't want her getting hurt because he was a superhero) showed up with superpowers; and so on. Everything was going great. In fact, things were going too great. Then suddenly, it clicked. Knox not only had the Black Squad, but the modified Project Victory technology as well. They were still trapped, but this time in a virtual reality world of Knox's making. But how could they be sure? Forethought tried to reach out for a mind outside the "world" but something in her own mind seemed to be blocking her. Turning her telepathy upon herself, she discovered that her mind was receiving electrical signals of some sort. Remembering discussions that she had had in the past with Dynamo, comparing her mental powers with his cyberkinetic ones and how the brain was not all that different from many electrical systems, Forethought began to push her powers to trace the electrical data back to its source. As she did so, the exertion was tremendous and her brain began to throb. Still, she kept going, until she was in direct contact with the computer controlling the virtual reality. Finally, with one mighty mental blast, she destroyed the computer.
Once again, the team regained consciousness, this time is sleeper tubes in an abandoned warehouse in New Jersey. As everyone got out of the tubes, it was soon noticed that Forethought was not herself — her memory seemed hazy and her brain still hurt when she tried to use her mental abilities. Checking the dates, they team realized that they had been gone just over a week and that a joint session congress to be addressed by British Prime Minister Tony Blair (and the perfect target for a madman out to destroy the U.S. government) was just a day away. While the task of defeating Knox, the Black Squad, and the new SinSquad was more difficult in the real world, it was still pretty much routine. Except for the fact that something was still wrong with Forethought.
An examination by Rick Davies soon showed that her mental powers were completely gone and were unlikely to return. It also became evident that she was suffering from memory loss including the memory of the assault that had triggered her powers. What should they do to help her? Should she be told of the assault? The team began to debate the issues. As the debate went on, Jerry Curtis (Crimson Fist) grew frustrated. The woman he loved was suffering and there was nothing he could do to help. With a team consensus nowhere in sight, he decided to take the matter into his hands. No matter what the team decided, it was inevitable that Karen would find out about the assault some day from some one, so it may as well be then from someone she loved. He was prepared for the shock when he told her. He was even somewhat prepared for the stunned silence. But he was not prepared for the look on her face — a look that he interpreted as saying she never wanted to see him again. Letting his insecurities get the better of him, Jerry ran off. Three days later, the team found his body with an empty pill bottle beside it and a note apologizing for not being able to live up to being a hero.
Originally Run: Origins 2003, Gen Con Indy 2003, Gen Con So Cal 2003