Marvel: Penny Dreadful

Also on Deviantart is Genesischant, who created what he calls "The Turn-of-the-Century Occult Marvel Universe", which is too long, so another user called it "Marvel: Penny Dreadful." This takes in the early 1900s, and most of the characters, instead of being mutated in scientific accidents or being born mutants, gain their powers from magical beings, rituals, and artifacts.

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  • The Gentlemen Adventurists' Society was a joint effort between the United States and her allies to quell the emerging para-natural menace (and the sometimes equally destructive para-natural panic). Led by the popular "American Spirit", this pack of para-naturally powered personages are potent paragons of para-natural power practiced in protection of the People.

  • In 1775, Thomas Jefferson stumbled upon a small cache of artifacts left behind by an extinct ancient civilization. Hoping it would aid the the revolutionary cause, he brought the artifacts, which included a cylinder of a strange otherworldly metal, to the other Founding Fathers. Benjamin Franklin used his keen metaphysical metallurgical know-how to craft the metal into an unbreakable shield-- with various mystical properties. Taking a cue from a Native American practice that had been observed in years previous, they sought to bond a soul to the Shield, to create an unstoppable Super Soldier. George Washington would be the first of the American Spirits, but he voluntarily gave up the title and power to become the first President of the United States in 1789. Each era has seen the rise of new American Spirits, each embodying the spirit of their age. The current American Spirit is Roger Stevens, leader of the Adventurists.

  • Antonio Stark, Italian millionaire arms magnate and eccentric inventor and collector. The self-proclaimed "Iron Knight of America", his armor is composed of several suits of ancient armor believed to be magical, including pieces from the Armor of Achilles, Weyland's Armor for Beowulf, the Kavacha (Armor of Karna), and the Shield of Lancelot. It is inscribed with many magical sigils and invested with spirits of the air and earth. The crystal that activates the armor draws its energy from Stark's own heart, which he had surgically (and mystically, of course) removed and sealed within. He also wields a modified maxim gun and sword.

  • Daniel Black (orig. Blixt), the enigmatic "Mr. Thursday", seems to be a pseudonym itself-- a cover identity as a brilliant physician. Very little is known about the lame doctor, but his walking-stick is capable of demonstrating incredible feats of weather control, illusion, and can even bestow flight and great strength upon its bearer. The cryptic Mr. Thursday speaks often of the ancient Nordic myths of the savage Viking peoples of his ancestral homeland. Perhaps this is a clue to the origin of his spectacular powers?

  • Dr. Brice Bannington was unearthing the structures surrounding the Ziggurat of Ur and came across an ancient oil lamp that had been locked away, covered in chains and mystical wards, sealed deep in the earth. The seals were broken and the Behemoth, without an independent physical form, inhabits Bannington's body in order to become incarnate. Strong emotions, especially rage, allow the beast to emerge, so Bannington must take care never to lose control.

  • Hank Primm, the titanic "Magog", has grown a foot every year of his life for each of his 28 years. After his difficult birth, his mother, concerned that her scrawny son would be unable to to help them in the fields, sacrificed a goat to the wicked gods that live in the earth. She asked their help in making her son grow big and strong. Their blessing was more than adequate, and soon fieldwork was no longer practical. Primm became a member of a traveling circus as 'Magog', and there met Jean van Dynne. The two are inseparable and joined the Adventurists at the request of agents of the Crown.

  • Jean van Dynne, the diminutive "Pyske", is a child born of fairy parents and exchanged shortly after her birth for a human child of Cottingley, England. A changeling can expect a hard life under the best of circumstances, and Jean was no exception. She was unusually small and grew very slowly. She had an unusual affinity for insects and the out-of-doors, especially for a girl. Her peculiar nature became increasingly obvious over time, and she soon ran away to the same circus that took in Hank Primm. The two are inseparable and joined the Adventurists at the request of agents of the Crown.

  • The Phantasmal Four was formed by the brilliant Sir Reid Richard after a supernatural catastrophe that occurred at the Van Allen Estate. It appears that the spiritualist attempted a ritual to journey beyond the veil and conquer death. Aristocrat Jeanpierre Tempest contacted Richard in an attempt to save his sister, Suzanne, from illness. He devoted all of his knowledge to the task, devising a ritual to cross over into the aether. In 1895, Richard, the Tempests, and Ben Grimshaw (Richard's friend) met at the house of Victor Van Allen to conduct the seance. Mme. Tempest survives to this day, but there was a terrible price. The survivors will say little of what transpired, but they were each granted a form of immortality. The 5th in their party was killed, they've mysteriously claimed, by some sort of daemonic force calling itself the "Baron of Doom", though they refuse to say more.

  • Sir Reid Richard, aka Mr. Phantasm, is the leader of the Phantasmal Four. A brilliant paranormal researcher for both the crown and private individuals, his physiology was altered in the botched seance, giving him stretching powers similar to the Yogi of the Indian Orient.

  • Suzanne Tempest was cured of her disease in the seance, but now exists as Lady Spectre, an incorporeal spirit.

  • In the aftermath of the Van Allen incident, Jeanpierre Tempest's body now burns with an errie flame that dosen't consume him. He is now Flambeau of the Phantasmal Four.

  • Growing up in the lower classes Ben Grimshaw has allways been a tough customer- after the Van Allen incident, "tough" is an understatement. The magical accident mutated Ben into the Impossible Thing, an orange-skinned brute with a hole where his heart should be.

  • When Victor Van Allen perished in the conflagration at his Estate in the summer of 1895, no one was surprised when the body was never found. The fire had burned very hot and the house had been quite large-- easy for some bones to go unnoticed in the charred rubble. Certain curiosities may have been piqued when a few months later a badly burned man in an iron mask and wig appeared on the political stage as the flamboyant and enigmatic "Baron Doom". Reid Richard and his Phantasmal Four may have thought they had escaped the Baron of Doom by the courage and sacrifice of Victor, their unfortunate fifth seance member, but they were wrong on both counts! The Baron has traveled to our side of the Veil by inhabiting the mind of poor Victor Van Allen, and he intends to have his horrible revenge.

  • The Silvern Herald claims to be one of the original Atlanteans, come to warn of the impending encroachment of a weird infra-dimensional being known as "Ghal'ak'thus" to his people, a phrase roughly translating to "The One Who Hungers". With the all the strange things occurring in these strange times, many governments have sent their supernatural experts to convene on the imminent threat.

  • Professor Charles Excalibur formed his "Paranatural Persons League" in 1900, though it had its roots earlier in 1896 (a year after the accepted beginning of the so-called 'paranatural wave' ) when he began gathering individuals with paranatural abilities under the guise of a preparatory academy. These days his Paranatural Persons League have become a highly controversial player on the world stage, as governments struggle to deal with the increased paranatural activity and associated backlash. Excalibur founded his group to protect, research, and train paranaturals-- and to work towards a world where they can live alongside their normal human brothers and sisters.

  • Charles Excalibur, professor of Moral Sciences, Occultist, and Mesmerist. Growing up in England, Charles became an officer in the British Army, like his father. After the loss of his legs, Excalibur turned his intellect to the study of all manner of forbidden and occult knowledge. It was during this time that he met Erich Eisenhardt, the man who would eventually become the anarchist labor organizer known as 'Lodestone'. They were fast friends and intellectual equals, and it was in this period of time that both Eisenhardt and Excalibur formed the basis of their respective political and personal philosophies. After a terrible falling-out, Excalibur left the Continent for America, settling in upstate New York. There he continued his studies and formed the Excalibur Preparatory Academy and Finishing School which would yield the first members of his Paranatural Persons League.

  • Scot Sumner's father was a hard man, and often cruel. It was this unthinking arrogance that brought his end, when he casually evicted a dying old witch-woman from her small plot of land without a moment's hesitation or pity. In her last breath the witch-woman cursed his only son, that everything he should gaze upon would turn to ash before his eyes. So it was that Scot destroyed his father, his mother, and his home in eerie smokeless flame. Scot chose blindness and homelessness after this tragedy, rather than bring destruction on all that he witnessed. When Excalibur found the boy, he raised him as his own, and his story inspired the school and League that followed.

  • Jenny Worth (née Grey) was a young girl when the spirits began to visit her. At first it was exhilarating, but then she began being menaced by a powerful spirit calling itself the ' Phoenix'. She spent the next few years of her life being treated by various specialists with no success whatsoever. It was only when she was introduced to Professor Excalibur at her husband's estate that she finally found someone to teach her how to control her abilities and close out unwanted entities. Mrs. Worth is still a formidable spirit medium and commands the spirits of the earth and air with a natural grace. Her powers continue to grow as she studies their use.

  • Wilbur Worth III was the recent heir of his family's fortune when he met the troubled Jenny Grey. They married soon after Professor Excalibur (who was staying with him at the time) began working with her. Some time later, Worth was suddenly and mysteriously murdered in his home. The trauma of his death caused him to return as a ghost, though it also erased his memory of the events that led to it. He has grown increasingly distant from his wife in recent years, and his need to solve his murder has become an obsession, likely the only thing keeping him tethered to this world.

  • Buniq (Bunny) Excalibur, a Snowchilde, a child's soul brought back in a body of snow and ice. Buniq was born to her Inuit parents several decades ago. She was the center of their world, and when she failed to come home one day, they were devastated. Buniq had wandered away from the village and a blizzard had made her hopelessly lost. Soon she succumbed to the bitter cold. But it seems that even the pitiless gods of winter can be moved by grief, because she was sent back from the halls of the dead in a body made of living snow, a body that could never age. She continued to live with her parents, caring for them in their old age until they died. If Professor Excalibur had not found her then, she might have walked out north, walked back to those sunless halls. Thankfully, he gave her a reason to keep living on.

  • Dr. Harold McCoy was a respected doctor in the New England area when local police came across several vials of blood that had been stored in the basement of a university for several years. As McCoy was a preeminent expert in the area, the vials were brought to him for examination. In a tragic laboratory accident, the blood from the vials infected McCoy, progressively altering his anatomy and mental processes to that of a horrid creature. McCoy has since bent his mind and skills towards stalling or curing this process, a goal that inevitably led him to Professor Excalibur's little collective.

  • Annette Marie, daughter of a rich southern family, afflicted with vampirism. Marie was always a model child for her parents, and when she took ill they were beside themselves with worry. Every day seemed to find her weaker, and though she slept more and more each day, it seemed she was drifting further and further away. Finally, one night she simply vanished from her house never to return. Annette Marie had been visited in the night by a creature known to the Romanians as a Strigoi. This supernatural beast sucked away the vitality of the girl, turning her into a Strigoi herself. It was an unlikely thing that she survived at all in any form, but her Strigoi captor (An ancient thing calling itself 'The Mystique' ) cared for her and raised her as a sort of daughter. Miss Marie lived this way, slowly giving in to her predatory instincts, until a chance meeting with Professor Excalibur's team convinced her to try another path.

  • Reynard Beauchamp was born on a particularly auspicious day, the seventh son of a seventh son. He learned early on that his luck was extraordinary, and to say that he pressed that luck is an understatement. In the absence of consequences, he's lived a life as wanton and dangerous as one could imagine. Unfortunately, Beauchamp came to realize that consequences could still find those around him. His charmed life would not protect others. And so he found himself joining Professor Excalibur's little club, to try and do the right thing for once.

  • The Proud family had always served in the houses of the wealthy and well-to-do, and Catherine was no different. Sadly, her master and mistress did not treat her well, and her shy and reserved nature only encouraged their abuse. The large, rambling, and understaffed mansion they owned also housed an ancient brownie named Lockweed. One particularly bad occasion, the master and mistress locked Catherine in the cellar. Lockweed, though a curmudgeonly old elf, took pity on the girl and took her under his wing. He taught her the art of walking the hidden paths of the world so that no locked door could ever hold her captive again (anything except cold-wrought iron, antithetical to such magic). More free than she'd ever been in her life, Miss Proud traveled to America and soon joined the League.

  • Pyotr was the culmination of decades of work by the Czar's resident mystic, Grigori Rasputin. Rasputin's vision of a new man for a new age led him to use his forbidden arts to invest a creature of bronze with the breath of life. He imagined that Pyotr would lead his automaton armies against his enemies. Unfortunately for Rasputin, Pyotr wasn't the fearsome warrior he'd anticipated, but a gentle soul with a poet's heart. Rasputin discarded him in disgust, and Pyotr found his way to Excalibur's door.

  • Mama Oya Monroe met Excalibur on a expedition he made to the Caribbean to study the Vodoun magical systems that had sprung from years of Colonial rule. She was a young girl, but her exceptional abilities as a horse of the powerful Loa Shango had made her an object of much veneration. The authorities began to fear her increasing sway of the people, and hatched a plot to discredit and murder her. Excalibur's help in saving her life earned him her respect and led to her joining the League.

  • Lucan is an amnesiac stevedore with strange tattoos that protect him from mortal harm. He cannot die, and seems to have lived an exceedingly long time. Further, he has abnormally high strength and agility and very keen senses. Lucan's prefered weapons are a pair of hooks that dock workers use to drag heavy cargo. He has recently taken up with Charles Excalibur's League of Para-Natural Persons.

  • The Excalibur Group is a private organization funded by a trust left by Lord Excalibur's widow, (mother of noted Para-natural Rights activist, Prof. Charles Excalibur.) Lady Excalibur was a student of Spiritualism, and she left a third of her fortune to a mysterious man named "Marten Broadoak", who seems to have some dealings with matters of the Occult. The Group has been known to have connections to Stephen Sanderson (The Infamous "Doctor" of Strange Lane) and Sir Reid Richard (of the King's Phantasmal Four).

  • Merlin Ambrosius was a powerful and immortal wizard who served the mystical 'Arthur' of legend. He is also the guardian of the 'Tower of The Firmament', one of the structures that support and keep separate the many worlds of Creation. Should the Tower fall into the wrong hands or be destroyed, none can guess at the huge consequences that would befall our world and others. To this end he arranged for the foundation of the Excalibur Group. Each member was carefully selected for their unique skills and strength of spirit. As 'Marten Broadoak', Merlin makes rare appearances and orchestrates his labyrinthine schemes, but spends the vast majority of his time in the Tower itself.

  • Mordred is the sovereign Lord of Orbis Alia, also known as 'Annwn', the homeland of the Fair Folk. Orbis Alia is a world that cleaves to our own, and in fact they are but a step apart to those who know the ways of it. Because of this, the fate of both worlds are always intertwined. Lord Mordred is as clever as he is ruthless, and hides his true intentions beneath layers of subterfuge and misdirection. He has recognized Merlin's Excalibur Group as official ambassadors to Orbis Alia for the present, and has even sent a representative of his own to join their team. His reasons for this are mysterious, and his beneficence highly suspect.

  • Byron Broadoak, a blood-descendant of the pre-Roman warlord, the legendary 'King Arthur', adopted son of 'Marten Broadoak'. After his true parents perished in a terrible accident, Merlin approached Byron and offered him two choices. He could take the Ebony Sword of Might and have eternal life-- or the Golden Amulet of Right and have the power to protect others. Choosing the Amulet proved his worthiness to be the Champion of Britain and a representative of our world to the other worlds of Creation. The Amulet gives Byron great powers, but it is his noble spirit that guides his actions and by his example, the actions of the others in the Group.

  • Kunoichi was once Kuwa Tsurayaba, a ninja warrior from Okinawa, Japan. She was a member of the Migite (Right Hand) ninja clan, so called because they functioned as the Shogun's right hand. After the shogun was deposed, the Migite Clan went into hiding, while another ninja clan, the Hidarite (Left Hand) clan, that had also served the Shogunate pledged their loyalty to the new Meiji government. A surprise attack all but wiped out the Migite. Kuwa was the daughter of the clan leader, and the next in line to receive the secret arts of the clan, a set of techniques known collectively as the 'Soul Knife". She was rescued at the last moment by Stephen Sanderson, an old friend of her father's. She was re-situated in London, under the care of the wizard, Merlin, who adopted her under his alias 'Eliza Broadoak'.

  • Meghan Faire, a child kidnapped by Fairies from her home in Cottingley, England and raised among them in Orbis Alia as 'Glorianna'. She is Lord Mordred's gift to the group, a gifted practitioner of Fae magic, and a guide to the world of Orbis Alia. She is also his spy, and is under the threat of great retribution if she doesn't follow her Lord's commands. Meghan has long obsessed over our world, known to the Fairies as 'The Firmament'. She voraciously read the colorful penny dreadfuls her people would bring back from scavenging trips to our world, and her understanding of human society is built entirely on this basis, much to the consternation and confusion of her new teammates.

  • Conrad Wegener, the Night Thing, is from one of the other worlds that connects to our own, a dimension metaphysically below ours. His father is a mighty demon warlord in his homeland, but Conrad has lived most of his life in our world with his mother's family, protected by magical disguises. A romantic soul with a heart for adventure, Conrad is always up to something. He's learned to step between worlds with an ease unheard of throughout the worlds of Creation. Conrad is also a superb fencer, and a first-rate prankster.

  • Peter Wise was an Agent of the Crown, part of Queen Victoria's secret 'Dark Bureau'. He dealt with supernatural goings-on for years, often getting his hands dirty in the service of his country. An encounter with a Class XIII artifact (cursed, hexed, or inauspicious items), the Ebony Sword, finally pushed him over the edge. He left his job with the government and joined the Excalibur Group. Now he fights for his country as the Ebony Knight, cursed to an immortal life of bloodshed until he can wash the stain from his soul.

  • Meiji-era Japan, a time of considerable political instability and flux, as the country attempts to reinvent itself as a Western-style modern nation state. This reinvention is under the direction of a handful of powerful men. An oligarchy that works under the auspices of the Emperor's divine will. So when the three sacred treasures of Japan (a sword, a mirror, and a jewel) are stolen under mysterious circumstances, a group of para-naturals is hastily assembled to covertly find and retrieve them, thus was born the "Ijyoufu Roku".

  • "Ginbushi" is the pseudonym of Count Katsu Harada. Katsu was a high-ranking samurai who fought against the Imperial army for the Tokugawa shogunate. When all hope was lost, he negotiated a surrender and went into retirement. He has been called back again, for the Emperor has need of his incredible sword skills and his legendary blade. The appointed leader of the Ijyoufu Roku, Katsu has his hands full attempting to manage the strong personalities of his teammates.

  • "Hikeshi" is the nickname of Shirou Yoshida. From a young age, Shirou could always manipulate fire. His mother was a prostitute and he never knew his father (who his mother claimed was a demon spirit of some sort). Shirou grew up in the brothel, and though many of the ladies there were kind to him, he quickly learned of cruelty and injustice. A sometimes arrogant and brash young man, his powers make him a potent addition to the team nonetheless.

  • "Mikan" is the stage name of famous onnagata (a kabuki actor who plays female roles) Akimitsu Miyazaki. The name is a play on the second kanji of his given name and the sweet mandarin orange. As a celebrity of the era, Akimitsu has countless fans and admirers. It's easy to procure information and access with his remarkable talents. To aid him, the Giri Zaibatsu has provided a bottomless satchel stocked with all manner of useful items.

  • Hiroko Takachiho, the only heir of the incredibly wealthy Giri Zaibatsu. A polymath and genius level intellect, Hiroko was her father's pride and joy. His death at the hands of assassins was a crushing blow to Hiroko, who saw her freedom and the leadership of the Zaibatsu slipping away. She used her extensive occult knowledge to make it appear that her father was still alive and in charge. Unfortunately, the powers-that-be have found out her secret, and will only allow it to go undiscovered if she retrieves the lost Sacred Treasures.

  • Ryuujin, the 'Dragon King', is an ancient Japanese dragon spirit summoned by Hiroko. She lost the other half of the spell that would have released him from her service, so he's obliged to stick around. Despite this, he's very protective of Hiroko and often a source of fatherly advice.

  • Gogo Damashi is the street name of this seemingly blind yakuza bakuto (gambler). It is not surprising that 'Damashi' means 'deception'. Covered with the tattoos that mark her outlaw status, Gogo could not expect much when she was caught cheating. Luckily, the Giri Zaibatsu saw her potential. Her tattoos were reworked with intricate threads of magical script--now she need only call out her name (this time, the meaning is damashii, or "spirit") and she transforms into a glowing ball of spiritual energy. She has a terrible temper and dislikes authority, but (whatever her name may suggest) she truly believes that a deal is a deal.

  • Erich Eisenhardt is the International Brotherhood of Workers. They seek to tear down capitalism and instate a workers' paradise. Born in Tsarist Russia, terrible edicts against the Jews forced his family to flee to America. Erich was a prodigy and quickly immersed himself in political thought, gravitating towards social anarchist utopianism and becoming a labor organizer for a Virginian coal mine. When Pinkerton agents intentionally collapsed a tunnel on Erich and his compatriots, his outlook became harshly radicalized. They found their way out through what appeared to be an ancient network of man-made caves which housed a vast disassembled mechanism. It was there he found the Lodestone, an immensely powerful electromagnet that can somehow be controlled by the human mind. Needless to say, the Pinkertons suffered a crushing defeat, and Erich Eisenhardt became a symbol of armed resistance against authority.

  • Ermintrude Frost, commonly known as "The Lady in Alabaster" in the newspapers, is the infamous proprietress of the Boston Gentlemen's Club (commonly known as Boston's Hell-Fire Club). As the owner of the private burlesque-house and brothel, with a clientele of some the most influential men in America, Miss Frost enjoys a lavish lifestyle-- one that she defends at all costs. The Lady in Alabaster is a brilliant manipulator, and there are tales told that she may augment her "natural" skills with some decidedly "un-natural" skills. Her personal library is rumored to contain some of the rarest grimoires and mystical folios in existence.

  • Kane Marco is the older half-brother of Charles Excalibur. Marco was born to Excalibur's mother and Anthony Marco, a British Army comrade of Excalibur's father. Kane, like Charles, inherited his mother's spritual sensitivity, though he couldn't hide its effects. Charles' father had the boy institutionalized in Cytorrak Asylum; unfortunately, the head doctor uses the asylum to play his sadistic games. Kane communed with the tortured souls that were trapped there. He was tortured by the Larva Inferni, which drew all the tortured souls into the now-deranged mind of Kane. Now Kane calls himself "Jagganath, Lord of the World." He remembers the stories from Calcutta about the carriage of Jagganath, and the faithful who would be crushed beneath its wheels. He is like that carriage now, and the massive spiritual energy he leeches powers the irresistible force.

  • Viktor Grey Creed, aka Sawtooth, is a man of the sea by profession, and bestial maniac by vocation. His hatred of Lucan runs deep, and he will stop at nothing to hurt him. Both men possess the same weird and twisting tattoos that grant them effective immortality, and the same killer instincts and skills. Sawtooth remembers little of his life before the day they both lost their memories, just bits and pieces. One memory fragment haunts him-- Lucan and himself locked in mortal combat, dressed in furs and knee-deep in gore.

  • Silas Burr took the name "Strongarm" in his boxing days, but he liked to go by it in his new job as a Pinkerton agent as well. He was a bully by nature, and he enjoyed seeing the fear in the eyes of those he was payed to intimidate, coerce, and kill. This went well for Silas until he came up against a new agent named Lucan who was mightily displeased with the methods that the agency used. Lucan smashed up his arms and his livelihood for his trouble. Luckily, Silas knew of an organization that practiced some of the stranger arts, and had a new pair of arms crafted through the use of alchemical properties from the flesh of corpses. He now looks forward to settling the score.

  • The Red Omega is a horrible demonic spirit summoned forth from the hell dimensions that border our own. A combination of ritual druidic magic conducted by a shadowy society (they identify themselves by the Greek letter 'Chi' ) and a series of gruesome murders perpetrated by the madman Arkady Rossovich provided the passageway into our reality that the monster required. The Red Omega is so otherworldly and evil that an aura of death and fear radiates from its very presence. It seems to find special delight in seeking out Lucan and tormenting him and those he loves. It has hinted on many occasions that it has known Lucan for a very long time and indeed may hold some of the secrets of Lucan's hidden past.

  • Yuanjun Hei Feng, known to many as Lady Dark Wind, is an undying Jiang Shi, a member of the undead. Her father, Lord Dark Wind, was a great Kung Fu master, but he was also a dangerous madman. He foresaw his own and his children's deaths using forbidden magic, and this drove him insane. He wrote the manner of death on each of their faces in caustic ink, scarring them all permanently. On Yuanjun's face he wrote a symbol meaning "cliff". When Lord Dark Wind killed Lucan's own master (for he was traversing the Orient at that time), Yuanjun came to him to beg his help in stopping her father. Lucan succeeded in killing the Lord, but Yuanjun died as well, falling from the cliff on which they battled onto the rocks below. Her death triggered the curse her father had bestowed upon her, to return to life to continue his own mad work.

  • Wyatt Wilson Poole was a two-bit rustler in the Western Territory until the day he crossed paths with deranged snake oil salesman, Dr. Killbrew. Killbrew and his thugss drugged Poole and sent him to Killbrew's private testing house where he was subjected to horrifying experiments. When Poole died, raving in his madness about his love for Lady Death, Killbrew had his body pickled and sold to medical students. Somehow, Poole's vat came into the possession of an old witch-woman named Blind Al. She raised the pickled corpse as a zombi, hoping to use him to do her bidding. Poole proved a slippery soul to control, and his maddened mind quickly broke free from her spell. His undead state makes him nearly invulnerable to harm, and severed limbs will drag themselves for miles to reattach themselves. This ability combined with his crazed fearlessness Dead-Man Poole's current career in sponsored mayhem a natural fit.

  • Raised by his Aunty Mae and Uncle Ben, young Peter Parcoeur was lucky to have the best education available to a Negro child of his time. His uncle had fought in the war, and instilled in Peter a strong sense of honor and duty to his fellow man. When his uncle became involved in a dispute with a white business owner and refused to back down, he was murdered by a white lynch mob. It was in this dark hour that Peter was approached by the Spider God- who offered him great powers to protect the oppressed. The strength, agility, and cunning of a spider allowed him to become a masked vigilante devoted to bringing down the powerful and corrupt and saving the meek and innocent. The Spider maintains a cover as a paperboy and runner for the powerful and pro-Democrat Dixie Bugle.

  • The Green Goblins Gang are one of several smaller fraternal organizations based in the American South (alongside the more national FOH) that grew out of the now defunct and outlawed Ku Klux Klan. Their stated purpose is to maintain white southern political power and protect their cities and towns from carpetbaggers, Negroes, Jews, Catholics, and the Para-natural Menace. They frequently clash with nefarious Negro-rights agitator and para-natural vigilante, the Spider.

  • Matthew Marduk is one of the sharpest of London's lawyers, but he hides a secret. He is Whitechapel's own Dashedly Daring Devil, who deals out deadly punishment to the criminals that plagues Albion! Matthew grew up a blind child among the tenements of Whitechapel. His father was a boxer, struggling to keep his son fed. When his father was killed in a thrown fight gone bad, Matthew appealed to Cosmos to help him right this. A demon replied and offered a bargain: he would be compelled to kill, and in exchange the demon would give him 3 magical devices. The Lenses of Truth would allow him to see the world through spiritual energy, as long as he was truthful. The Rod of Justice smites evil, so long as he was just. The Amulet of Righteousness would protect him, so long as he was Righteous. And so struggles our hero against his darker nature, for he must kill only the deserving, lest he dissolve into a true monster!

  • John Henry Cage and the Fist of the Iron Dragon. Xie was raised in an enclave of monks known as Kun Long, trained in the Iron Dragon style of martial arts. He then embarked on a sacred quest to America. Xie was captured by Fisk Railroad and forced to work in a chain gang. Xie, aka "Donny", met John Henry Cage, a steel-driving man and another slave. Their notable skills led to their selection as Fisk Railroad's representatives in a contest against Stark Transportation's new steam drill. Tragedy struck as the tunneling caused the ground below to give way. Both were unhurt, but they found a massive mechanism, buried deep. Both feared what might happen if it fell into the wrong hands. They are now on the lam, and they walk the least traveled roads of the country, trying to stay ahead of their pursuers. Along the way they've come to symbolize the triumph of the ordinary man over the evils of authority, and some celebrate them as heroes.

  • Abraham Castle lost his faith in the Second Boer War. He no longer believed in the Service, the Crown, and God. He got out soon and rejoined a family that he'd scarcely known. Having accidentally witnessed a hideous ritual conducted by criminal businessmen, his child was murdered by cruel spirits, and his wife's mind was utterly shattered. The meaninglessness of it all was like a revelation to Abraham. If God would not avenge his family and punish those who committed great evil, then HE would. Now the "Revenger", Abraham wields a huge modified howdah pistol, a Lee-Enfield rifle, a C96 Mauser pistol, a knife, and a modified 1897 pattern British Infantry Officer's sword. His leather vest is of the sort used by metal workers, but stitched with a Jolly Roger. Its intent is to inspire terror and also remind them of the flag's original meaning: "Surrender or die".

  • Stephen Sanderson, antiquarian Occultist and recluse. After returning from an expedition to the Himalayas ten years ago, Sanderson had not left his home even once. Surrounded by a perpetual fog of opium and hashish, he claims to be the Sorcerer Supreme, and that he wages war against the forces of Oblivion. His flat is located on Strange Lane, hence the slightly mocking nickname, "The Doctor of Strange". Looked after by his foreign wife, Clea, Sanderson lives a life part-way in our reality and part-way in that which is beyond and between what we perceive.