Captain Mako Week

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Overview

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Captain Mako Week kicks off a Double XP weekend from 8:00 AM CDT on Friday, August 10, 2012, through 8:00 AM CDT on Monday, August 12, 2012, and continues throughout the week with in-game invasions and more! Join us in Paragon City and show Captain Mako who tops the food chain!

The Dolphin's Smiling Cousin

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(From the Official Forums, July 12, 2012)
Sharkhead Isle

From the cold depths of the ocean, a figure emerged onto the sandy beaches of Sharkhead Isle. Hunching over, his neck and limbs twitched and spasmed, gripping at his chest as he inhaled a hissing breath. He looked about as Arachnos soldiers peered at him in the distance. The targeting displays within their helmets zoomed in and adjusted resolution before the computer positively identified not what they were looking at, but who. Instantly they stood at attention, letting him pass. The fliers parked nearby painted his silverish body red in three-second flashes as he headed off the beach and onto the pavement. He shielded his eyes from the morning sun and moved familiarly to a square concrete building with a rounded, non-descript door. As he opened the door he hissed again and his lungs inflated while his gills settled after his morning swim in the bay.

Gideon Ray had been allotted a large swath of resources for his housing. Looking around his chambers in Sharkhead, one would never know this. But it was for convenience rather than need that he'd had the large meat locker built into his domicile. It's glass door was partially frosted over, and within he could see racks of hooks, upon which were sides of beef and pork, while others held more sporting meals. They hung there, silent now, and awaited his hunger.

The man known to the Arachnos as Captain Mako settled in as well as he could, but he felt ill at ease even here. This place was supposed to be his home, but it was more a place for others to bother him at, a place to be pinned down to. No, the seas surrounding the islands were his true home, but living on land was an inconvenience required by his station. His black eyes darted around the sparse domicile; in the corner was his armor reinforced sensory deprivation tank with the aerator pumps. In the other corner was his vid-screen and communication hub. Stepping up to it, he paused as a clawed finger felt over the glass cover of a yellowing photograph of a young man and woman. He knew he was supposed to feel something, that's what people did. But there was no emotion towards the keepsake. He wasn't even sure why he kept it, other than that's what people did. It was much like this 'residence', a social obligation he simply did not want, but did so that questions were not raised. He felt the moisture beading on his skin. He rubbed the droplets into a thin layer over him and then sniffed his hands, keeping the sea with him as long as he could.

'Activate' was all he said towards the communications hub. This was the time when people planned their day, when the cattle started their routines. It started with the consumption of information provided by the sea of images from the television. Then, once those schools of humans went about their daily lives, chewing on that cud, they spewed the chum back at each other around water coolers and break rooms. He chose to stand before the screen, fingers twitching as the screen illuminated the room in its teal incandescence. Others could sit, be complacent, he had to be ready to move, to feed. So hungry. He looked back at the meat cooler, licking his rows of razor sharp teeth. He'd have been upset over the lack of effort needed for the meal, if the raw meat wasn't so fulfilling to his palette and his belly.

"Welcome to the Morning News! I'm Joe Rohsin." Said the smiling man behind the desk, Mako curled his lips in disgust. The lighting in the studio, on cue, illuminated the woman who was always by his side like a lamprey.

"And I'm Anna Claireborn." Mako curled his thin lips. Why he kept these rituals was beyond him, these faces greeting him every morning, mocking him with their smiles, prey in a shark cage always out of reach from his teeth and jaws.

He regarded the screen; like it or not, he had to know what the herds of people were up to.

"Well, Anna, what do you know about sharks?" Mako blinked, leaning forward a bit. This was certainly a pleasant turn of events for him.

"Not much, Joe, aren't they fierce, deadly predators? Attacking any who cross their path?"

"Well, Anna, many would have you think that, but this week we are covering sharks in much of our weekly programming here on WSPDR, trying to show the real side of these magnificent creatures, the gentle, playful dancers of the waves. It's something we like to call 'Sharks: The Dolphin's Smiling Cousin'."

Mako felt his jaw drop, his rage a small ember, but growing quickly as cartoon images of sharks overlaid with soft, sweet music played.

"Joe, that looks wonderful! I had no idea sharks were so friendly! I bet that's why Lord Recluse has Captain Mako as a peacekeeper and friend to the other generals." Mako twitched, claws clenching into fists. Who were these people with a death-wish!? How DARE they?!

He continued to watch the broadcast, images of great whites and hammerheads jumping from the water in slow motion to the music of Mozart and Beethoven, making them look like ballerinas of the sea. It stripped them of their ferocity, their pure fury and power, and then came an off-hand mention of him in association with this behavior. These people would pay for this. They would pay in flesh, blood, and the tears of their loved ones.

He reared back and threw himself at the screen, crashing into the large smiling face of the man, spider webbing it and crushing it against the wall in a spray of sparks. He lifted the monitor in his blood rage, crashing it onto the ground, onto to pick it up again to smash over and over. He dug deep into his primal fury, angry that the daily routines of Gideon Ray had been twisted into this insult to his very being. He would be a laughingstock, seen as nothing more than so much fluff and chum. He looked to the cooler full of meat. No, this needed live prey, something that screamed. He'd show not just Arachnos, but the world that he was no smiling cousin to dolphins...

Perhaps after whetting his appetite for bloodlust in the Rogue Isles, a visit to his original home, Paragon City was in order. If anything, a show of power there would cement his image with Lord Recluse. He spun and exited the door back to the street. Sadly, the nearby Arachnos soldier coming to investigate the loud noises became the first victim of his rage. He looked back to the ocean, ran towards it and dove in...

It may have been Gideon Ray who heard the morning news, but it was Captain Mako who was about to make the nightly broadcast.

Jumping the Shark

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(From the Official Forums, August 15, 2012)
Grandville

It was in the inner sanctum of the Generals that Kelli Forston, known to the world as Barracuda, stood. Before her loomed Lord Recluse, leader of Arachnos. It had been than 24 hours since her benefactor and mentor Captain Mako had seemingly gone berserk for inexplicable reasons. She glanced to his right, where Red Widow stood, the chilling presence of the grave still on her recently resurrected form. Although she was expecting his anger, when he spoke it still startled her.

"Your Patron and Mentor has..." he paused and crossed his arms, "acted in a way unbecoming Arachnos."

Barracuda bowed, she knew the recent attacks on the shores of the Rogue Isles were bad.

"My Lord," she stated, matter-of-factly, "Gideon has harmed many, these past few hours, but surely his victims..." She was cut off by Recluse.

"In many ways Gideon Ray was the first victim of Captain Mako, if there is one thing I know it's how a rise to power can create someone anew. As such, like with many cold-blooded killers, he keeps trophies, sentiments. In the case of Gideon Ray, Mako keeps a few mannerisms and habits of his former life." He looked to his side, to Red Widow. "If his killing instinct can't be reined in, then I will see to it that he is stopped." Red Widow nodded.

Barracuda took in a breath, speaking sternly. Recluse might not like someone standing up to him, but she knew he had enough respect for those willing to have the chutzpah to try. "My Lord, there are reports that he has taken ships, and has set course for Paragon. Surely they are still reeling from the loss of Statesman, if he can sharpen his teeth on the Freedom Phalanx..." she paused, seeing how he took this.

"Very well, but you have until the end of the week to get to the bottom of this. He isn't responding, and reports show he destroyed his private hub. This doesn't bode well for him."

Barracuda nodded and bowed, then headed toward the elevators. Black Scorpion blocked her path. He leered at her.

"'Ey, why you helping that guy anyways? He makes like a tuna fish and yer up for a promotion." He chuckled under his breath, looming as he let her pass. She stepped in and hit the button for the lobby.

"Yer a better fit anyways, have you been watchin' the TV lately, sharks ain't nothing but smilin' fluffy dolphins."

Barracuda stopped short, blinking. "Excus-" She was cut off by the door closing, hearing Black Scorpion's laughter.


Independence Port

The news reports rang in his mind, over and over again. "Sharks are sweet, loving, happy creatures." "Just when you thought manatees were the most huggable beasts of the sea." "We have a 4 hour marathon of Jibberjowls! Oh, those silly sharks!"

Mako swam in his native waters, every attempt at taking back the image he clung to being torn away from him with edited video. He attacked a group of people playing volleyball, and was painted as the best spiker in St. Martial. He rampaged through the docks, and was labeled as playful and happy around people.

The 'Jumping the Shark' comments when he went after the skiers would haunt him for months to come.

He swam and sped through the waves. Trying to clear his mind of this attack on his person, he looked around, letting the inner beast out.

Hungry. Hungry. Bite. Chew. If he were a primal beast these words would mean nothing. He surfaced near the shallows.

"Oh look honey, I think it's a shark!" said a giggling ladies voice.

"Did you see the news reports, they're, like, the kittens of the sea!" The lady leaned against her male companion, with whom she was having a seaside picnic.

"Why yes my dear! Oh look, he's coming towards us, he's smiling! Oh how adorable, I think he wants to give us a hug with how his arms are out towards us like that."

Mako had not had a meal like that in weeks.

Then again, he wasn't one to let a perfectly good picnic go to waste after savaging those who would call him a kitten.

In homes across the Rogue Isles and in Paragon, television sets were turned to many channels, all detailing the happy, joyful lives of sharks everywhere. People tuned in, in droves. How rarely did the broadcasts get so many coming in flocks on a nightly basis. Ratings skyrocketed, and deep within the electronic viewing world, The Television purred in joy of his achievement.

I -ATE- WOOFERS!

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(From the Official Forums, August 16, 2012)
Talos Island

Captain Mako stood hunched over on the beach, growling. He was quickly surrounded by beachgoers and patrons of Spanky's Boardwalk. Photos were being taken, video of him being uploaded to websites as he heard their mantras over and over again.

"Sharks! Sharks! Sharks!" They chanted; fist pumping the air. Mako didn't know what to do; any attack was spun into something of joyous delight. He had had enough of this, and screamed at the crowd.

"Why aren't you afraid of me!? Shouldn't you be running in fear? I'm a shark! I'm a SHARK!" He cupped his face in his claws as his comments were met with a whoop of applause.

"Exactly, you're a shark! We love you!" said a lady in the crowd.

Mako sneered, "But I attacked that cargo ship! I slaughtered the crew!" The crowd held its applause for a moment, and a lone voice piped up.

"According to the police reports, that was full of contraband and Superadyne. Did you hear that? Sharks keep our city streets safe and clean!" Another round of fist pumps and hoorays assaulted his senses.

"But...but... I rampaged through City Hall!" He stood confidently, waiting the turn of the crowd.

"Actually, City Hall had been taken over by Nemesis duplicates!" another voice shouted. Mako had jokingly called himself the hero of the Rogue Isles, but this, doing honest to goodness... Well, goodness was beyond him. He'd be a laughingstock, unable to return to Arachnos. Still, the one action he was saving would cement his evil in the minds of the gathered.

"I -ATE- WOOFERS!" No way could they say something positive about his devouring of the unofficial super dog of the Freedom Phalanx. He sneered and swiped at the crowd, they backed up a moment before that single voice piped in.

"Actually, that was Woofers' evil Praetorian counterpart, DireHowl."

Mako felt defeated, but he wasn't going down without a fight. He looked at the gathered and licked his lips. Hero indeed, he'd show them all!

Later that night, the news covered how a group of shark lovers scared a dear, wonderful bunny of the ocean, which, in its fear and bewilderment, tragically, but understandably, defended itself.

The people watched their televisions, eyes fixated on the screens. Shark Frenzy had taken root.


St. Martial

Barracuda read the daily newspaper; the whole of the Rogue Isles seemed to be gripped by Shark Frenzy. From what she could gather, it was spreading far and wide. It had seemingly come from nowhere; a single drop in the world's view of the fierce aggressive predator was having a serious effect on her mentor.

She headed for the Golden Giza, stepping through its gilded doors and onto the flashing and blinking casino. She walked past the patrons exiting the nearby dance club, stern expression on her face.

A little old woman with a bucket of game tokens ran into her path, propping herself in front of a slot machine. "I saw it first, missy!" the old woman yelled at Barracuda, who was taken aback. Kelli stared at her, feeling her anger rise from deep down.

"Excuse me, Gladys Brittlehips?!" She stepped forward toward the elderly lady, raising a claw, and suddenly felt a cold hand on her shoulder. She turned to see Ice Mistral looking at her.

"Irena, I was just about to teach this old bag a thing or two..."

Ice Mistral gave the old lady a polite smile. "Ms. Jenkins, forgive my friend. Mr. Sonata's personal guests of course get priority on the slot machines." She then turned to Barracuda. "I'm assuming this has something to do with Mako's recent attacks? I thought you'd know more than anyone about him."

Barracuda looked solemn. "It's this Shark Frenzy, it's like everyone has sharks on the brain, with no explanation as to why? I was wondering if your magic senses could tell you anything. I'm at my wit's end on this, Irena. I only have a few more days, and Mako isn't stopping. Yes he's mostly attacking Paragon, but he's been making a point to come back on his private flier to attack our own citizens as well. It's this fluffy, cuddly image. If I know him he can't stand it. -I- can't stand it."

Irena shook her head.

"No, if there is something controlling the masses, it isn't magic. I wish you luck, though. I've heard about your deadline, and it would be a shame to lose Mako."


Sharkhead Isle

Captain Mako stepped off his personal transport to be greeted by a squadron of Arachnos Soldiers, their weapons drawn. He arched a brow.

"This had better be a very bad joke. I've not had the best past few days." He growled at the assorted soldiers, who didn't even flinch.

"Sir, on the order of Lord Recluse, we are to bring you in." The troop leader had said. He heard a snicker in the back.

"There ain't any way I'm turning myself in, I'm Captain Mako, I run this island. Now you turn around before I make an example of you."

Again, the troops held their ground, until the snickering one in the back spoke up.

"Would this be before or after the tea party and crumpets?"

Mako saw red.

A Bloodthirsty Killer!

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(From the Official Forums, August 17, 2012)
Cap Au Diable

Mako skimmed the oceans along the beach. He had become withdrawn, the hunt not as appealing to him anymore. A public appearance became something to be seen like a rare bird in the sky, something to gaze upon in wonder and happiness. The fear of his prey had been taken from him, with this Shark Frenzy rooting itself in the minds of the denizens of the Rogue Isles and Paragon City.

The man who was once Gideon Ray swam far and wide, attacking ships, sticking to the shadows, anything to be seen as a threat. He had re-doubled his efforts once more to cause havoc and destruction, to show the primal bloodlust that had earned him his place in the highest of Echelons of Arachnos.

Every night, his actions of destruction and vile harm were replaced with cutesy clips from websites, even a viral image of him attacking a DJ with a speaker entitled “Captain Mako drops the bass!” was circulating the internet. Shark based cartoons, documentaries, songs, all with that same bubblegum and rainbow image glued right on top of it, and he had been tacked on as the poster boy for all this nonsense.

He looked over at the beach, an entire brigade of Luddites marching, preaching their propaganda against the evils of technology. Mako grinned; they wouldn’t have anything other than the most basic defenses, knives and clubs. It would be a massacre. He felt his heart pump, the adrenaline rush of a real drag out fight, exploding from the water towards them.

They screamed in panic.

Mako laughed and then stopped short. These people were still afraid of him; he could taste it on the air. He ran, claws flexed and ready to strike. He saw them scatter, and went after one of the slower members, grabbing him and laughing.

"You there, you fear me? I thought everyone LIKED sharks, thought us to be bouncing little bunnies on a sea of marshmallows." He leans in close, snapping his jaws inches from the terrified man’s neck.

"What are you talking about, you’re a SHARK! Why wouldn’t we fear, we know your reputation, we’ve seen the aftermaths of your attacks. You’re a bloodthirsty killer!"

The man quivered and felt the sand hit his feet, being let down. His legs weakened from the experience gave way under him, and he fell on his rump.

Mako loomed over him.

"You remind the others of that."


3 Hours Later

"I just told you everything I know!" said the Luddite to Barracuda, shaken from his experiences with Mako and now his protégé.

"Let me get this straight, he attacked you, you RAN in fear, he caught you and released you." She scoffed; this couldn’t possibly be the best lead she had at solving what was causing this Shark Frenzy. The man nodded; explaining the whole sequence of events once more. She dropped him and shook her head.

"Am I free to go? I swear I’ll do anything you want. I’ll stop protesting the PTS, stop fighting you Arachnos and those Destined Ones. Anything you want! Heck I’d even watch television if you told me to, and trust me when I say that there is nothing good among about that, we swear there’s a demon behind that screen, whispering lies."

Barracuda blinked and dropped the man. "Yes, go." She said quietly as she looked out over the ocean. She grinned and watched the choppiness of the waves, looking to the Luddite. "I’ll give you a 2 minute head start for your assistance." He went pale and turned, running along the beach, until his lungs breathed acid from the strain. He just had to jump past what little tide pool and he would be home free.

His last thoughts were that he never expected to feel hands grabbing him from the water.

Barracuda laughed as the Coralax claimed another victim. Now she had all the pieces in place. It all made sense now, but it would take her some time to collect her thoughts and approach the source of all this.


Grandville

In a back alley, a group of people huddled around the screen, known members of various rivaling gangs stared in slack jawed unison at the screen. Television was on, and it was time for their favorite show. It was ALWAYS time for their favorite show. Lately it seemed their favorite show was about sharks. So many sharks: swimming in the ocean, swimming in their minds. The sharks would gobble up the fish; the sharks would gobble up their attention.

Those gathered there never even noticed when a figure came up from behind them, so engrossed were they in the broadcast featuring Captain Mako.

"We need to talk." Barracuda said, looking at the image on the screen. "But I can tell you’ve been expecting me."

Magical Dream Unicorns

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(From the Official Forums, August 20, 2012)
Grandville

The image of Captain Mako on the screen turned and waved happily at Barracuda.

"Hello there, have you been enjoying the show? So many people have been, it's like an epidemic!" The Television said in Mako's voice. "It's been such a wonderful week, everyone tuning in, watching Television like they should, and your good friend Captain Mako has been helping me; the footage he's given me to work with is bar none! Please thank him for me when you see him next."

Barracuda growled and hissed as she pushed a member of the Freakshow out of the way, she got up real close to the screen.

"End this now or I'm pulling your plug. Capisco?" She looked over the gathered and then back to the screen.

"Why would I end this? It's gotten me some of the most loyal watchers I've ever had! Afraid this whole thing will 'Jump the Shark'? Ooh, please tell me you saw that footage with Mako and the skier." The Television hummed deep in its diodes, Barracuda smiling.

"Actually yes, but I'm willing to make a deal with you. I'll talk to Mako, he'll do this once a year for you, put on a great show, all carnage and blood. You know his sorta thing. But only if you stop this rainbow and gumdrop lie you have about him and sharks. Think of it, you get this, all this attention, every year instead of this big flash in the pan sweeps attempt."

The image of Captain Mako on the screen paused in thought.

"But my current viewership, if they found out I lied to them, they might abandon me, how can I keep them affixed to the screen if they don't have Shark Frenzy to look forward to when they get home from their jobs?"

Barracuda shrugged. "Well, folks have been going to the movies lately with that Double Feature of Time Gladiator and Casino Heist, I'm sure turnabout is fair play if you take some of those viewers back." She chuckled. "Do something unexpected, but it's not my problem now. I expect folks to be scared of sharks by the end of the day. I'll send word to Lord Recluse that what has been affecting Mako is over, and you can try and figure out the risk versus the reward of your viewership that's afflicted with a love of rainbow, bubblegum animals."

The image of Captain Mako stopped and smiled wide. "I have just the idea... You know, you aren't so bad, miss. I might have to put you in the movies one of these days."


Sharkhead Isle

Captain Mako swam ashore in the morning, stretching as he beached himself. He felt the air hit his lungs as his gills contracted down. Once he started seeing the news reports about how scientists were wrong and that sharks really WERE dangerous nightmare beasts made of rage, fury, and hunger, he knew the whole thing would be over with.

He had spoken to Barracuda and Lord Recluse, learning the full seriousness of his attacks. While his pride was damaged, his standing in Arachnos was not. Although he may have been fought off by the Heroes of Paragon City and the Villains of the Rogue Isles in his myriad attacks, his drive and continued hunger kept his image pure. If one general of Arachnos could do that much damage after the fact, imagine what all of Recluse's army could do.

He looked at the soldiers who stood at rigid attention, letting him pass as he entered his domicile. Had it only been a matter of days since this had started? Since he was referred to as the 'bunny of the ocean'? He looked around the room, all evidence of his fury having been cleaned for him, the communication center replaced.

He shook his head, this whole ordeal started with these pathetic rituals and habits of his, of Gideon Ray. He wasn't that man anymore and had no desire to be. He looked at the faded photograph of the man and the woman, in the still of the morning he spoke.

"My name is Captain Mako, and I killed your son Gideon. I grew inside of him and like every ship I have ever sailed; I forced my way into control. He is the first vessel I laid claim to and I am not sorry for it. I took his name as my own, I own every molecule of him and I'm not giving him back. But his little habits, I kept them too. Nothing but trouble, they are. So you know what, I'm gonna leave them in the ocean like so much debris." With that he picked up the photo and put it in a drawer, locking it.

"Good riddance."

He looked at the screen, chuckling at the newscasters reported on his many attacks, the injuries across the Isles and Paragon. Disturbing images flashed and excited him. He walked to the cooler and grabbed a machete, grabbing himself a hunk of cow, the vision before him making him hungry.

He ate his meal and grabbed the remote, to end this ordeal. The last time he would indulge the actions of the herd. The habits of Gideon Ray would end. There is only Mako, and he didn't need such unnecessary things clogging up his day.

"Well, that's the end of the morning news on WSPDR, in light of recent events we have changed out our morning rotation from Jibberjowls to a new cartoon sweeping the nation due to its popularity in the theatres. Stay tuned for Magical Dream Unicorns!"

Mako groaned as the pastel images, so similar to the ones that offended him over the past week, filled the screen with giggling horses.

"Gee Lucky Charm, do you think the dragons in the next valley REALLY want to come to the dance party?" Mako blinked.

Thirty minutes later, he stood before the screen as the credits rolled.

"Well," Captain Mako thought, "One habit wouldn't hurt."