11.4 - Greyscale

Case File: Paul Grey, aka “Problem Child”
Status: Clean Slate approved
GPA: ███
Relatives: ██████████████████████████████
Criminal Record: see Attachment 2

Subject was referred to OJJDP and AEGIS at age 13. Prior to that he’d been involved in several altercations with others.

Subject’s superpower is “Strength Sapping”. Subject unconsciously “borrows” or “taps into” bio-energy from those around him, giving him strength, speed, or durability equivalent to anyone in close proximity. The effect is logarithmic: if near two superhumans of strength X, he will have approximate strength 1.3X, not 2X, for example. The effect is always on, and gives him superhuman capabilities except when fully isolated.

Under observation, the subject reported feeling discomfort from this effect, describing it as an itching or a tingling, like numbness in a limb following pinched nerves. AEGIS Psych Profile suggests that the subject prefers to avoid human contact because of this discomfort, and has subconsciously sought isolation (even solitary confinement) to avoid experiencing the sensation.

Treatment recommendations included the following:

  • Late-stage socialization counseling. Subject is badly socialized and needs to learn ways to relate to those around him.
  • Clean Slate program enrollment. Subject’s responses to the SRR7 form were consistently 7+, indicating good odds.
  • Power-mitigation drug regimen. Testing indicates that a full power suppression program is harmful to the subject - his body is now dependent on his powers for normal function. Moderate doses have proven helpful in suppressing the discomfort.

“Poor kid. If he were ever really isolated, the lack of bio-energy would be fatal. Loneliness will literally kill him. But just being around people causes pain and punchiness.”

“The most successful power drugs we’ve been able to find come from the black market, so for now we’re letting Paul self-medicate. This would be a huge red flag in any other case, but AEGIS committed to resources if he goes rogue or gets hurt. I just wish I knew who he was getting the stuff from.”

“We’re still not sure if he was born with this power, or if it was given to him - maybe by the same biochemists that are now keeping him dosed with a counter-agent. AEGIS must hope they can use Paul to get a line on the dealer and find out for sure.”

@insomn14 since you mentioned Roddy was Paul’s neighbor, how does all this work for you?


Oh yeah, this is very good, very evocative, and–most importantly–easily brings to mind ways to interact with the character or get them involved in play.

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Any other NPCs we’d like to see get the same treatment?

The folks I’m most interested in are the ones who haven’t really gotten a lot of focus in our games: Kid Kool, 2Kick, Hellblade (sorta), and Poly-Anna.

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Can you elaborate on “sorta”?

I feel like they’ve sort of gotten some representation in our sessions, but not a whole lot in comparison to like Emma, Nono, Hunter, and Evan.

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PC interaction opportunities:

  • Joey and Paul can spar on even terms, and both of them might find it cathartic to work off some aggression this way
  • Mette might have some reason to remember a plot to biochemically create supervillains that Paul was a key part of
  • Roddy is/was a neighbor and could strike up a conversation at any time, about anything - or have some insight about a problem Paul is facing