While I can and do enjoy writing nearly everything, I wanted to explore adversarial themes between two strong, morally ambiguous characters. Entertaining stories of scheming, plotting and general conniving, particularly when the characters are clever enough to be excellent manipulators.
I don't have strong preferences on RP story format (forum, PM, other), but if any of the following story hooks catch your interest, please reply to me with PMs rather than post so I can keep this thread primarily for story tracking. In these stories, I am interested in playing the male character, but I am extremely flexible when it comes to plot modifications, the setting, or general background. I enjoy world building and crafting an intriguing story, but I'm perfectly happy doing so in any setting I'm familiar with, from realistic modern to fandom to sci fi to fantasy.HOSTILE WITNESSThemes: Power struggle, Seduction, ManipulationHook Summary:
It was front page news in major media outlets when the elusive and ruthless head of one of the most powerful drug cartels was arrested, his outraged protests replayed on clips during the evening news. By comparison, it was a very minor blurb as news went that the drug lord's girlfriend had been arrested as an accessory and agreed to testify in return for immunity and a bright shining future in the Witness Protection program. For the no-nonsense, highly professional government agent assigned to guard and watch her, he imagined it would be a tense but eventually boring few weeks. He could be sympathetic towards his charge/prisoner, who wouldn't be for being in the wrong place at the wrong time? But ultimately he had a job to do, and staying professional with courteous emotional distance would be the best thing for the both of them.
Of course, his opinion would likely be different if he or anyone else realized the 'girlfriend' was in truth the head of the drug cartel, managing to pass blame through some careful planning and cunning. Not ideal, by any stretch- the longer she stayed in the safe house, the more likely it was for her to be found out... or for one of her underlings to make their bid for control of the cartel and ruin all she had spent years building. No phone, no computer access, no sort of outside contact at all- was there already a bloody power struggle underway in the cartel? Some assets were frozen at the arrest, but likely her hidden stockpile of money and arms was safe, but for how long? She had to escape. It was a dangerous situation, both for her and her greatest obstacle- her guard.PAYBACK IS A...Themes: Blackmail, Seduction, Coercion, Betrayal Hook Summary:
It was early into his career as a prosecutor and it just happened to be an election year for the judges. No one wanted to look soft on crime- not his law office, not the judges, and especially not the voters. So if he got pushed to throw the book at some club kids and party girls messing around with drugs, what choice did he really have? Ultimately it probably helped some of the young adults he put away. A wake up call they badly needed to put their life back on track, so what was there to regret? It worked out for the best, now years later being the district attorney, and being able to fight the real criminals.
He ruined her life. She was smart, easily became valedictorian, looking down a full ride scholarship to ivy league with a future that couldn't be brighter. It was out of character to her to celebrate her college acceptance letter with a big party, but you have to live a little sometimes, right? She had no idea the party even had drugs, but somehow, she was the one left holding the bag when the police came in. Completely innocent, why wouldn't she go to trial and reject a plea deal? But no, convicted with 'intent to distribute', her future was shattered the moment the verdict was passed with all the hopes gone forever behind a punishing sentence. But despite never going to college, she certainly did wind up getting an education- prison put her in an entirely different kind of networking environment, and she discovered she was pretty damned talented as a people person. If being a conwoman was offered as a college major she would comfortably have had a doctorate. Her new post-prison set of skills were surprisingly employable in the less than legal job market with a constant stream of offers, but one caught her eye. The new district attorney was going after some individuals that really would not like it to go to trial, desperately seeking a specialist that could get something incriminating on the self-righteous prick... the same man that put her away. The most infuriating thing? He doesn't even remember her.
A DEVIOUSLY DANGEROUS DANCERThemes: Cat and Mouse, Manipulation Hook Summary:
Being the head enforcer for a sinister and shadowy organization actually wasn't that bad a gig, all things considered, when you lived in a world of superheroes, caped crusaders, and individuals clinging to sentiments so sweet he was absolutely positive it rotted the teeth. Most of the time you just kept things running smoothly, avoiding the attention of Captain Whatever or whoever that guy was that could shoot lasers from his eyes, and that was it. His bosses weren't even that unreasonable, really, considering they were set on world domination and all. But then came this current project. It was standard fare, you know just more 'even the scales with the metahumans and supers' type thing. Some super secret serum, only with more alliteration. He was a meta, but he could of course understand in wanting to make the Legion O' Thugs able to go toe to toe with the big boys.
But then one of the scientists left the secret base one night with the only prototype of the serum, breaking approximately ten million regulations saying not to do that. They only knew the serum was missing when the scientist didn't turn up to work, which led to a gravely overworked enforcer trying to figure out what happened. Okay, so the idiot scientist was seen going to a strip club. Fine. And then grainy security footage from the club showing one dancer in particular breaking all kind of contact rules with the guy. Huh. And then them leaving the club together. And then finding the scientist's naked body in a cheap hotel with no sign of the dancer or the serum. Okay, fine. So after asking around the club, it doesn't seem
like the dancer that seduced and murdered one of his brilliant (but idiotic) scientists was working for another villainous organizations. Maybe. But it did sound like she had a chip on her shoulder about being a normal human in a world of superheroes. Well, whatever. How hard could she really be to handle?IT'S JUST BUSINESSThemes: Power Struggle, Blackmail, CoercionHook Summary:
Competition in the business world is always intense, but when you are at the very top of the ferociously ruthless world of high finance, cutthroat takes on a whole new meaning. For a young, highly ambitious executive, a vacancy soon to open up from a CEO set to retire is an opportunity that little things like ethics or fair play won't possibly prevent. Most of the members of the board are individuals that can be influenced with fairly straight forward bribery and manipulation, but his chief rival for the position was still tenaciously holding on. It didn't seem like he was getting much traction, but then he decided to hire private investigators to dig into his rival and his staff to look for anything promising.
Surprisingly, they found almost nothing... except on his rival's gorgeous personal assistant. At first, it just seemed puzzling, certain aspects of her past history being vague or slightly contradictory. Not normally noticed, but it encouraged deeper digging. And that's when they found out she wasn't who she said she was at all, and had a dark past of dirty secrets that could put her away for a very long time if they contacted the police. She was, it seemed, an expert in industrial espionage, employed by his rival under the cover of a secretary as his dirty tricks specialist. Going to the police and creating a scandal in the company right now could be... damaging. So no, the real answer is to try to turn her with some good old fashioned blackmail. But when the private detective that investigated her disappears, the question arises- just how dangerous is she?SPY GAMESThemes:Cat and Mouse, Seduction, Manipulation Hook Summary:
In his own completely unbiased opinion, he happened to be one of the world's finest assassins. He certainly had the work history and high marks on customer satisfaction surveys to prove it, really. So he had learned due to his immense talent to trust his instincts, and his instincts told him something was not quite right about this current assignment. The setup wasn't the most odd, in the byzantine world of spies and contracted freelance killers. Impersonate a member of the diplomatic staff for a spectacularly corrupt foreign government, pretending to be the mark for the enemy agent to lure her close. Pretty standard stuff, when her MO was to seduce her marks. But it wasn't quite right.
A little digging into the normally mysterious employers let him piece together who was employing him for the hit, and it raised all sorts of question marks. The contract came from her own organization. That was the kind of red flag he couldn't ignore, since why didn't they take care of it themselves? She was an incredibly talented agent, with an unbroken track record of information recovery, blackmail, or assassination ops, so why did they want her dead? Or did they? Who was the real target here? There was only one way to find out, and he could have a good time doing it.
For most assassins, they'd probably bail out of an op the moment they get the slightest feeling something was wrong. You did tend to live much longer that way. But for him, he never even considered it. What kind of fun would that be? If you can't be the absolute best and make sure all of your rivals knew it, then you might as well hang it up for good.BLOODSUCKING POLITICIANSThemes: Vampire politics, Manipulation, IntrigueHook Summary:
When you live forever, you can take centuries in cultivating your power base. Even among immortals, none could seem to remember the last time the terrifyingly powerful, dominating and autocratic vampire Prince had be challenged. The politics of the city all were a current that never seemed to quite brush up against his power base, the lurking and frightening power that none in the city would dare cross, with all the harpies and slow danse macabre discussing the courtiers vying for resources beneath him. The very rare occasions that he had even the mildest challenge, most remembered the brutal ruthlessness that the mighty immortal hadn't hesitated to show.
So it came as a surprise that a sly and impudent young neonate was still surviving. She was gathering power, undermining some elders, and seemed to have no conception of what dangerous ground she was treading and how close she was coming to awakening the monster in their midst. Or did she? She was cunning, and all eyes in the elysium seemed to be waiting for when she finally would meet the prince.
For an unfathomably powerful and commanding prince, the biggest threat for a long to him had just been boredom. A challenge from a charming, young adversary was... interesting. If she wanted a personal meeting, like she boldly demanded, she might just get one. And they'd see who was really the prey.THE APPRENTICEThemes: Intrigue, Identity, Seduction, MagicHook Summary:
The council wasn't really sure what to do with her, truth be told. Malevolent, powerful, and ambitious, she had managed to spell the end of a string of different mages using cunning, deception and a dangerously charming beauty. The Archmage had discovered each one of a number of mages had recently acquired a charming new apprentice shortly before they met a mysterious end, their secrets presumably dying with them. He tracked her, found her, confronted her in a magical duel that was far closer than he would be willing to admit before finally subduing her and bringing her before the council of mages.
Execution, however, was out of the question. She now possessed vital secrets from deceased researchers that must be recovered or centuries of effort would be lost... particularly when far darker forces were on the move and that information would be sorely needed soon. Their solution was not one that pleased the Archmage at all, however. Use magic to break apart her sense of identity and memories, convince her that she was truly the young and talented Archmage's apprentice, and let the Archmage draw out the secrets that only she now possessed during the course of teaching her- and letting her seem to discover them as innate talent with a new personality.
After all, if she started to remember who she really was, he could just subdue her again, and deal with her if she became a problem. He wasn't happy, but now he had a new, extremely dangerous apprentice.WHERE THERE'S A WILL, THERE'S A WIDOWThemes: Seduction, Betrayal, IntrigueHook Summary:
The murder was almost the perfect crime. The rich, old patriarch had been an insufferable burden, a man that had a lifetime's worth of enemies who all despised him and for good reason. Ruthless in business, domineering and arrogant in his personal life, it would be easy to understand why anyone would want him dead. But everyone was relieved when the man finally died of perfectly natural causes, particularly his very young and intelligent wife, who had orchestrated the bastard's murder with the kind of brilliant precision that the old man had used in his business dealings. It had been a nearly perfect performance of seduction, manipulation and betrayal, and it would all be worth it to make her an astronomically wealthy woman.
And then came the will reading. It shouldn't have surprised her that the old man had lied through his teeth when he told her that he had changed his will so she'd inherit everything, but it did. As it stood, she wouldn't inherit a cent, which shocked her because he apparently had no immediate family at all. But there it was, a son she didn't know existed and the old man had never once mentioned, estranged apparently for years. The only bright spot was the attorney that was the executor of the estate was a 'friend' who she convinced to keep it quiet... for now, at least. She could find the son first before he realized he was now astronomically rich, and if something happened to him and she could now contest the will in court with no opposition... well. No great plan can't deal with a few bumps, after all, particularly if the bump was an unsuspecting man her own age.LOOSE LIPS SINK SHIPSThemes: Pirates, Intrigue, ManipulationHook Summary:
His Imperial Majesty was furious at the growing count of lost ships, despite the best efforts of his navy, bounty hunters, and hired killers to find and remove the mysterious pirate responsible. Piracy was more of an infuriating thorn in the side than a true threat, but it still played on the minds of the admiralty when it seemed like somehow the pirates always knew where their ships would be in advance. His Majesty would need to dispatch a frigate carrying the pay for his armies to the front soon, but how could they make certain this ship wasn't intercepted?
It was a simple enough plan; take the boldest, most courageous and loyal captain in the navy and give him sealed orders without telling a single other soul. Take no risks at all. Spread around a few false rumors, and there'd be no way the pirates could possibly catch word of it, right? And all the captain has to do is keep his mouth closed for a single night- what's the worst that could happen?