Aberrant: The Price of Ambition
Summer of ’08.
Jennifer Landers is dead, Utopia mourns publicly and begins a fierce investigation into Andre Corbin’s former friends and co-workers to find him in connection with the murder. Whispers of “The Aberrants”, a network of conspiracy theorists and novas trying to uncover Utopia’s secrets, start cropping up in the remote corners of the Op-Net.
The United States government, after a very public series of Wikileaks about alleged crimes, human rights’ abuses, and corruption by the Devries Agency’s, begins a national conversation about the regulation of Elite agencies and possible Nova registration. President Laura Pendleton opposes the move while both the Republican and Democratic parties express a variety of oppositions and support.
As the 2008 Presidential election heats up, President Pendleton (L) is polling at just under 40% approval—opening the field for Marc Anthony Green of the American Eagle Party. Green’s platform taps into a national unrest at the growth in primacy of Utopia and the wane of American influence worldwide, as well as caution over rampant Teragen terrorism. The Democratic Party commits to Randel Portman, The Fireman, and the nation is divided. It’s anyone’s race.
And in Queens, New York, a small group of novas—backed by a shadowy European figure—put themselves in the middle of the playing field with the launch of Steelwater—a new Elite agency spending millions of dollars establishing itself, but having very little track record otherwise. Using senior staff at Manheim Advertising (one of New York’s top PR and Marketing agencies), top lawyers at the peerlessly prestigious (and expensive) Waicott & Cordell Firm, and employing top scientists from MIT, Cern, and the LHC… they’ve aggressively wrestled the attention of major organizations and governments across the globe.