Barnabas LeVite/Section 3
From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
Section 3: The Frozen Phoenix.
Section 3.1: Ascension, Redemption.
Two weeks went by. Friends mourned in different ways. Some tried to remember and others tried to forget, but anyone that knew Barnabas in life knew that he was fighting for his ascension in a frozen wasteland Hell.
When Barnabas returned to the surface, he was different. His human body was obliterated by the explosion, and his new one, complete with blue skin and a razor sharp tail, was a marvel of Hell. He was stronger than ever before, and his control of demonic energies more precise and fluid. His combat suit destroyed, he put on his heavier assault suit to hear LSI com chatter. Provost Moreaux's voice was warning a voice Web had never heard before, "Watch your tongue. You're speaking to a Chaser Knight." Web stood atop Paragon City Hall, shaking his head at the sense of pride that clouded the communicator. He had a brief conversation with Moreaux, confessing the selfishness in his original motives. When Moreaux accused him of not knowing what it was to be a son, Web went all but ballistic. He left to go see Holly.
The reunion was bitter-sweet. He was back from the dead, holding the mother of his unborn child in his arms. They spoke of their future. "Whether or not you and I are together, I promise we'll be a happy family. No matter what." He tried to let go, because he was afraid of love. He'd spoken to The Demon once before, and she asked him why she would ever want to be in a relationship, just to see the person she loved grow old and whither away before her while she continued existing. But Holly insisted that they stay a couple, and he didn't know how to say no.
Next came the people that let him down. He'd heard since his arrival that Syl could have prevented his death, but chose not to. He came crashing down on her in Pocket D. Words after a lengthy scuffle revealed that the Sylvia at the Giza wasn't completely herself, and was being controlled by her own demonic entity which escaped her body at some point during his absence. Syl also revealed that her and Chris had fought, the result being a tally on the number of times he's died. Web confronted Chris, and though it wasn't said outright, they both knew they'd need some convincing before it came time for them to trust each other again. And something happened that told Barnabas he couldn't attack Christian.
Faith Ophelia James was brought into the world.
Web met Molly Andrews in Pocket D. She'd apparently killed herself during his absence, and shared a new demonic presence with Web. They stood and spoke about the things to come, but Web didn't expect to see a very infuriated Sky-Scar accusing him of Molly's death. Robin's delusions were that Web was the demon that took Molly's soul. Web would reveal the truth, that Molly sold her soul to offer Web's unborn son protection, only to have that truth bent to an extreme. The newest accusation, surfacing after one or two attempts on Web's life made by Robin, was that Web forced Molly to sell her soul for his son's gain. Assassination attempts would be made on almost a weekly basis afterward, and Web's self control would wear -very- thin.
In the grand scheme of things, Robin was merely a thorn in Web's side. As time passed, he never saw Emily Denton, he never found where Xeden was holding Lia's killer captive, Bridget Cross soon became kidnapped by her ex-husband, and his new job as an agent of his frozen home was top priority. His concentration showed itself in his diligence and eagerness to get work done. Carmen Castillo, the Praetorian counterpart of a former member of the Lightning Strike Initiative, began sharing conversation with Web. For a chain smoker and an alcoholic, the girl seemed to have a good grasp on reality. The target on LSI's back was getting easier and easier to hit.
At an LSI meeting, the group was introduced to Chris and Jordan's new baby girl, a photo was taken of the team, and Web and Carmen came to Chris with an idea. They wanted to start a team of pro-active black operatives, to send the message that the LSI was not a force to be reckoned with, -before- something awful happened to a member. Until then, LSI was an expert at fighting back. Now, they had a strong fighting front. Unofficially: The Illuminati. Their list of missions started out at a fine length. They needed to destroy the illusion that the LSI was vulnerable to attack, and they needed to rescue Bridget Cross.
Web had numerous contacts in the Rogue Isles that were still loyal to him after the fall of ARSOC, and he began to call on their aid. Slowly but surely, Web would receive more and more reports of sightings of Arbiter Agape, Bridget's ex and soldier of Arachnos. Every single night, when Paragon City went to sleep, Web would travel back to Grandville; to the ARSOC base, where he'd shot and killed Deliah, to dig up what he could on Agape and track all flights and submarine activity around the isles. Every day he removed a bit of the cobweb that was dangling by the entrance of the base, and every day he walked past the sliding blood stain on the steel floor that never got cleaned.
Web got a call from one of his contacts in Grandville. Devin Agape had been seen on the beaches of Grandville, and that beach was now decorated with an organized system of familiar looking corpses. A blue haired pregnant woman, a teenage boy, and a muscular blonde man, decapitated, among them. He put his detective skills to the test. It was at first determined that the corpses were there to taunt Web and his team, as the majority of the corpses were made to look like members of the Lightning Strike Initiative. The truth that he soon found out was that the victims were killed in front of Bridget to cause her mind to wain. Infuriated by the Arbiter's tactics, Web laid in wait, fully prepared to slaughter in Bridget's name; a sentiment she would only silently appreciate. Days later, he found a bloodied and broken Bridget Cross on that same beach. There were other bodies around, one of them that of Arbiter Agape. Web cradled Bridget in his arms, and she told him how better her life was with him in it. He carried her back to the ARSOC base and nursed her back to health. He built her a combat suit not unlike his own, and brought her back to Thomas Sherwood in a slightly more presentable shape than he'd found her in.
Section 3.2: Abandoning Peace.
He was building a certain kind of fame within the black operations sector. That, and having the appearance of someone who's bloodied their knuckles more than once, led someone to Web. A woman named Mira Tuska who had questions about her past. She gave him a very vague lead: Web was to investigate a Soviet Russian super soldier program. Where better to look for clues on anything than a Malta stronghold? As far as the Malta were concerned, they were just getting a warning spank from the LSI. Web and Carmen led the Illuminati into a Malta database in Tampa, Florida. A paper trail took them to a heavily guarded Malta biotechnology center in Los Altos, California. There, they retrieved the information on the program that they were looking for, and there they saw holding tanks: each containing a disgusting abomination of humanity. Their first moral decision as a team was whether or not they would let the building stand. It did not. As compensation for the task, Mira gave Web his Bugatti Veyron Super Sport.
But things couldn't stay business as usual. Web was enjoying an ice water in Pocket D, when Sage, one of his black operatives, picked a fight with an ex-Arachnos soldier, likely after the price on his head. Web intervened, and Sage protested. He teleported himself and the soldier away from the bar to have the fight on his own. Web went back to his drink, and Molly began to tell him about a sister of his that surfaced from Praetoria while he was dead. He started to protest when the soldier walked by, sporting a cocky swagger. Web and Molly rushed to the dance floor and recovered Sage's barely living body to bring him up to the Brofist station's medical bay.
There, Web received an automated S.O.S. It was telling him that Fen was dead. He cursed and left Molly with Sage to scour Faultline, the place Fen lived, for evidence. He found William Carrigan, Fen's best friend, in a hidden spot called the Cryptic Lounge. It was a swanky place, save for the electrical burns on the floor. There were hardly signs of a struggle, which means someone knew just how to take Fen down. Earlier that day, Fen was seen poking fun at an old man that called himself Niska, who seemed particularly interested in Fen's cybernetics. With the mindset that a villain always returns to the scene of a crime, Web stayed behind in the Cryptic Lounge while Will searched elsewhere. He kicked over one of the pool tables and mounted his multicannon atop it. He was ready for an old Ruskie to poke his head in and have it immediately removed. His aim was steady for hours into the night, until he got a notice from one of his contacts. A body washed up in Talos Island. Lia MacKay was dead.
He let out a scream, but the voice that came out wasn't his own. It was deep, echoing, and purely evil. His skin turned black and began to crack, creating large chasms that flowed with bright blue demonic energies. A crown of horns grew from his skull, and a force of the energy that controlled his powers erupted from him. The torrent threw nearby furniture around the tiny lounge. He stormed forward and checked the massive shipping containers that hid the entrance clear out into the water below. He didn't know what was going on with himself, but he could tell that he was dangerous. People would regret coming near him and his.
Section 3.3: Chaper.
Fen was eventually recovered and hospitalized. Apparently, Niska was torturing him, removing his cybernetics until Will gave him the secrets of his MX-Armor. Web visited Fen at the hospital, but didn't stay long. He needed to occupy his mind or he'd lose it.
Sylvia's brother made several appearances in Pocket D, and he and Web did not get along. Every encounter they had turned out to be an aggressive one. Drake led an assault on the Rumare Estate, but it turned out to be a failure. Web regretted he wasn't there to help his friends, and saw an opportunity to make it up to them. He threw on his Knight Suit and walked the hull of the B.R.O.F.I.S.T. '09 space station and readied himself by the fusion cannon. After an internal moral dilemma, Fen activated the cannon. Two fusion cells the size of sedans were launched from the station. Web grabbed onto one of them and rode it into Earth's atmosphere. the Rumare launched surface-to-air missiles and shot down the first cell. Another missile made contact with Web, but didn't explode. Instead, it stabbed into him and got caught in the abdomen of his armour. He was thrown from the cell just before it made contact with the mansion. The explosion was... big. Web stood to his feet and examined the rubble, where he found two items of interest: a girl's diary and ballet slippers. He recovered them and Fen warped him back to the station. Then they pulled the missile out of Web's gut and... tossed it out the airlock. Out of sight, out of mind. Don't tell Shrouded.
Seasons rolled around, and both Emily and Holly were making themselves scarce. Web found himself socializing more and more with Jo Sterling, a girl he'd flirted with/threatened to kill in the past. They became close, and Web finally stopped dragging things out with Holly. It wasn't long before he asked Holly for his mother's ring and used it to propose to Jo, who accepted despite the short time they'd been together.
11 January, 2011. BRO received a distress call from Holly Andrews. She was attacked by a small team of assassins inn Perez Park. Assassins who didn't know that they'd just hit a hornet nest. BRO and coalition members swarmed into the area and drove the attackers back. Holly was warped to the '09 station's medical bay and was thrown into labour. Gunny Memphis LeVite was brought into the world beside a stillborn Maria Feriun Andrews LeVite. Emotions were cut from their tethers and let loose. Barnabas scolded Holly for her decision to enter Perez Park's gang territory, and blamed her for the baby girl's death.
When one door closes, another door opens, and things are hardly problem-free in Paragon City. Using the technology that Will paid as ransom, Aleksiy Niska or one of his business partners had created an army of MX-Drones that were attacking in waves all over the city. Web locked, loaded and joined the team that was defending residential Faultline, but when word came around that Kasun himself was being overrun by a massive number of invading drones in Peregrine Island, Web took to the skies. There, along with RX-P41N and Diamond Husk, they whittled down enemy numbers. A conveniently timed Rikti bombing run left the remaining drones unorganized, and gave Web and his allies the chance to meet up at the invasion's source. The BRO supergroup had amassed an army of their own, with over three eight-man strike forces pushing forward into different areas of the base. Each group came into contact with a Hypros class cyborg- a demented attempt at improving Designation Meteor Howl. The fight was exhausting, and two of the three teams were met with heavy injuries (On team 3, Altrisse mentioned that "Klackers hurt one of his pinchies"). Charges were set, the base was destroyed, and the team was transported to the B.R.O.F.I.S.T. '09 space station. Web solved his damages as he usually does and fell asleep on the floor of the station's medical bay. Altrisse worked her magic and instructed the able on how to help her bring the rest back to acceptable health. Fen's body wasn't eager to be repaired, though. Will created a digital body for Fen, and Web woke up, spazzed out, and pulled the soul from Fen's 'organic' body and put it into the new one. Then he went back to sleep.
Emma Bianchi, at some point, barfed up a younger version of herself, and Jo adopted it. That's one way to grow a family tree. She named the little girl Kinsey, and Web got her set up with the social security office. An older version of her came from the future using technology that Web apparently would come to father. Using that technology, an armada of teenagers to come flooded the present time. Among them were a seventeen year-old Gunny Memphis LeVite, and a fifteen year-old Delia, who claimed Jo would be her mother. Delia also told Jo and Web that she had an older brother who was sixteen years old in her time. Jo, as it turned out, was pregnant.
Section 3.4: The New Boss.
Another day in Pocket D, and Web is introduced to Emily Denton's Praetorian. The Demon had been hiding in Praetoria, and Denton, it seems, had consumed her power. This placed her as Web's direct superiour, and the person in control of all of his energies. There was a brief scuffle before she sapped his power, and another moment before Web's comrades stopped attacking her after he gave the order. She was the new boss, and there was nothing Web could do about it. While showing Jo one of the larger "Kirby holes" in Cyprus, Web got a call a text from Fen: "Just so you know, she's lying." Seconds later, Web got a distressed call from Molly over the BRO communicator. She told Web that Fen was hurt, and to meet her at the chalet in Pocket D. Boss appeared and tapped him on the forehead. He felt a surge of power and was forced into the archdemon form. He felt like his power had doubled. Boss told him not to keep Molly waiting. He looked to Jo, then left to the chalet. There, he found Molly, and she told him that Fen was at the hospital. They rushed there to meet him and found their prey, caught in the trap as planned; Fen was not at the hospital, but Christian Beller, The Drone Bay, was. And he'd killed the entire hospital staff on his way to the room that Fen was supposed to be in. Drone Bay summoned Rowdy, a giant pugilistic robot, to keep Molly busy while he fought with Web. The hospital was torn apart in the battle, and Beller seemed to be using a Willtech forcefield. Enraged and fueled to unreal levels by the Boss, Web focused the entirety of his energy into a single punch, which shattered the forcefield and sent Beller through two walls and into a maintenance hallway. Web and Molly rushed to intercept him, and cornered him. Whittled down to bare bones and unable to use brute strength, Web called upon on his Christmas present from Will: The Carrigan Industries Proton Cannon, which Web named "Jenny" after Will's android daughter. The massive cannon appeared over his left shoulder, latched on and charged up. Dronebay's power armour was torn apart by the particle beam, revealing a tunnel behind it. Rowdy and Beller had dug their way to freedom. The shreds of power armour began to flash red, and beep. Sensing eminent explosion, the demons ran. Web took a good hit from the blast, but made it back to Cyprus safely. For the next week or so, he'd take it easy and rest.
Relaxing in the cold of the chalet, Web was approached by a man named Aiden. Aiden explained that he was working in 'human resources', and they'd had to relieve Boss Denton of her duties. She was uncontrollable and power hungry, and didn't care much for her job. Over the next two days, Web and Aiden were in an interview process which resulted in Web having domain over his plane. With it, Web got full control of his energy. He was the boss now. Aiden offered him ten grand a month, the ability to do soul contracts, and asked if he wanted to request anything else as payment. He told Aiden to break Fen back into the gene pool, since Project CERES left him sterile. Aiden agreed, and gave Web an old iron ring. It was a trigger, he explained, which would activate when Aiden processed the paperwork of Web's promotion.