Normal Topic Painted Lady and Caterpillar (Read 113 times)
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Painted Lady and Caterpillar
Jun 25th, 2022 at 5:27pm
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Wow!  Summer has been HOT here in the southeastern United States!  Since I miss the chilly (for us) Spring that we enjoyed this year, I thought I'd post about two paranormals that invoke images of Springtime!  Painted Lady (Mercenaries, page 7) and Caterpillar (Menagerie, page 4)

I'll start with Painted Lady.  To begin with, she two weaknesses.  By the rules, she wouldn't have two.  She already has six Animal/Plant powers, so her extra weakness didn't come from there.  This leads me to believe that her extra weakness is "artistic license for character development."  Ouch!  Considering the trauma of her amnesia combined with the loss of her humanity, I bet that stings!  I would probably tone that down to one weakness: Lowered Intelligence (total amnesia) kinda like Jack Herman did Maxima (Dragon magazine, #111, page 82.)  This would bump her stats back up but at least she would have a chance to get her memories back (per her background.)  Also, she's one of the good guys.

Something interesting that I noticed is that Painted Lady could find herself in a dangerous situation if she's depleted her Power score.  It takes 9 PR/day to regenerate and she doesn't recover Power while regenerating.  This can fulfill the "...always be some type of damage that Regeneration is unable to regenerate" requirement, btw.  If you play her as is, she might not be smart enough to consider this (she's slightly below the average mark on Int.)

As for helping her with her amnesia, I considered MindSweeper (Mercenaries, page 20.)  Fortunately, she's a good guy too.  She might not be able to help much, since PL's amnesia is not psionic in nature.  But maybe by working together with another telepath they can help PL "piece together" her memories (like Professor X did with Carol Danvers.)

And now let's talk about Caterpillar.  Whew!  She's a lot of work!  Caterpillar might take some brain-storming to allow her to fit into your (local) campaign seamlessly.  Or maybe the heroes just travel to the Amazon Rain Forest and pick her up for you (the GM) as a favor.  Or she could be captured by explorers/scientists and brought back to the player's country for study (and escapes.)  But if you don't like these options, especially if you want her appearance to be a surprise, then maybe I can offer some plausible facts to help her get to you're player's country on her own:

First, despite her name of "Caterpillar," her physiology is more "humanoid butterfly" than caterpillar.  She's of a non-human race found on Earth.  And very rare it turns out.  And from the "heart of South America."
Sigh...  Why not just call her an alien that creash-landed on...  Oh, wait.  That's been overdone.  You may as well say she escaped from a villain's remote island base!  Lol!  Anyway. at first I was going to attribute her race's rarity to a painfully slow reproductive cycle like the Gray Elves (AD&D DM's Guide, page 13.)  But when I looked up the lifespans of real butterflies, I found that many of them have a total lifespan of 1-2 weeks.  The longest-living known species lives up to a year.  This is much less than the time spent in their other stages (egg, larval and pupa.)  Sigh...  So I just decided to stick with the "humanoid butterfly" concept and have them live a lifespan similar to humans when they reach the butterfly stage.  "Young Myrcin" (her secret identity) has probably just reached maturity and is likely inexperienced.  In other words: the PERFECT choice to send out into the world on her own!  I'll come back to this later, btw.  And with no way to integrate herself into human society, AND probably from a completely different country that your intrepid players (the "heart of South America,") it's going to take quite a feat to plausibly get her into your campaign at a convenient location.  Getting in trouble in a human city in South America and stowing away on a plane carrying fruit and/or vegetables sounded pretty far-fetched, but what the heck.  Let's try that.  It might even work for the United States.  As it turns out, this isn't improbable.  I searched for countries that the United States imports food from and the USDA's own website has an Excel spreadsheet listing all the foods and countries we import from.  Peru popped up on the "Fruits" and "Vegetables" tabs!  Brazil popped up on the "Fruits" tab.  So then I searched for exactly where the "Heart of South America" is.  I did a search, and everyone in South America claimed to be the "heart" but Paraguay won with the most search results.  Which makes sense on the map.  But the Amazon Rain Forest isn't there, and how else are you going to explain the location of an undiscovered race?  Ok, so Brazil it is!  I think Brazil has the lion's share of the Amazon Rain Forest AND exports butterfly food to the United States.  But is the Amazon Rain Forest the logical choice?  Is it unexplored ENOUGH to hide an undiscovered race?  According to Mark Horn, a biologist on Quora, and his answer to "Is the Amazon Rain Forest Fully Discovered," the answer is YES (it's unexplored enough!)  In his words: "In terms of humans, Brazilís indigenous affairs agency, FUNAI, estimates that in Brazil alone there are 100 as yet uncontacted tribal groups. In terms of animals, it is estimated that there remain undiscovered 160 species of land mammals and 3,000 species of amphibians..."  This information was posted on Quora about "5 years ago" as of June, 2022.  And I doubt it's changed much since.  So there you have it!  Myrcin ran into trouble upon entering a Brazilian city and stowed away on a plane that just happened to be carrying fruit to America!  Boom!

Now...  What about this "Young Myrcin" thing?  And what about her involvement with the purely-seasonal goons (Mercenaries, page 11)?  Meeting her during the "This Nut's Not Sweet" mini-adventure might help clear up her confusion, even though the adventure doesn't mention her.  You'll have to read her origin to understand more.  And if you're not a GM, then you don't need to be reading it!   Grin
  
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Re: Painted Lady and Caterpillar
Reply #1 - Jul 3rd, 2022 at 1:25pm
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Ok...† I gave Caterpillar (Menagerie, page 4) some more thought today and she is a serious problem for GMs wishing to incorporate her "as is" into their campaign.

Language
Butterflies normally communicate with color, pheromones and by the sound of flapping their wings.† Since she's humanoid, it can probably be assumed that she can make vocal sounds and communicate in a spoken language.† You could probably describe her voice as "strange but very pleasant and melodic" since butterflies were created for beauty.† But the only spoken language that she would speak (outside of her native language) would likely only be Portuguese.† You can probably assume that she learned (insert your country's native language here) from her companion but that would also mean that she would have time to become like her companion.† This can complicate matters when trying to return her to her native land (see below. )† It can also be assumed that she uses pheromones in some kind of communication fashion.† So, for instance, you could say that when she talks she emits a (musky?) smell similar to flowers or honey or whatever.† And no, this doesn't mean that she can breed or desire to breed with humans.† Keep it PG, please!

Nationality
So, Myrcin is the epitome of a "stranger in a strange land."† She's alone, except for her current companion, and is probably unwilling to betray him since that would leave her alone again.† But she's done some regrettable things.† Can she legally be returned to Brazil without some serious roadblocks?† Also, with the scenario I presented above, she entered (insert your country here) illegally.† And is she too ashamed of what she's done to face her people and so return to them?

Off-topic
Ok, I couldn't resist.  I don't believe in Evolutionism because it's just plain stupid.  There's just too much elegance and art in Creation to believe in something as clumsy and inelegant as Evolutionism.
https://mymodernmet.com/leo-lanna-uv-light-amazon-exploration/
« Last Edit: Jul 3rd, 2022 at 8:59pm by Display Name »  
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