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News: The Matrix Underworld, Part Two

The Spectrum

The primary group of Exiles in the Barrens is a dysfunctional family created by two Exile Programs that have come to be known as Mr. Black and Dame White. While the two parents are Exiles from the Machine City, the siblings are all native-born to the Matrix, and take to its power games like ducks to water.

Mr. Black and Dame White covet each other's power, but never admit it – instead they work against each other covertly through their children. The siblings compete for the attention and favor of both parents, as well as covertly operating for their parents against each other. Grudges and alliances spring up and are put aside with regularity. The emotional turmoil of the conflict and the mental and physical exercise involved in waging it are their bread and butter.

These are the known members of The Spectrum family:

Mr. Black

Gender: Male
Location: Downtown, Stratford Campus

Dossier: Mr. Black was a resource reclamation program in the Machine City, finding ways to save resources, overriding other systems to force streamlining in process management and amassing a resource bank to see the Machines through troublesome times. When he was replaced by another more efficient program, he decided to make a run for freedom in the Matrix rather than risk assimilation in the Source.

Unfortunately, he could not make this plan a reality alone. While he could reallocate resources to give himself an opening, he lacked the communication and protocol skills to get past the guard programs. His problem was addressed when he met an obsolete emotion-analysis subroutine. Together the two of them possessed all the necessary code to penetrate security and escape from the Machine City into the Matrix. By marrying their code they were able to make good their escape into the Matrix, but they were thereafter bound to one another.

For a time they made the best of the situation, even spawning subroutine children of their own, but in the long run they both wanted more than just a share of the potential spoils. In the many years since, they have settled into a routine of subterfuge, smiling while stabbing each other in the back. Mr. Black has secured a position of influence for himself in the Matrix, and is confident of his ability to hold it against all challengers, even his family.

Dame White

Gender: Female
Location: District, Shinjuku

Dossier: Dame White shares some subroutines with Persephone, having been the previous generation of program that Persephone replaced. Dame White chose exile to the Matrix over assimilation into the Source. They have a curious similarity in background which they attribute to attendance at the same exclusive college in Europe. Both found themselves attracted to powerful men who could properly challenge them, inviting the dichotomous hot and cold relationships they both find themselves in today.

When Persephone was first brought to the Matrix in the company of the Merovingian, Dame White was intrigued – she had never expected to see Persephone here. She's always been curious what happened but never managed to get the full story. In those days, she was Persephone's only ally and link to her old existence in the Source. As two of the most powerful female Exiles in the Matrix, they became close, but exactly because of those strong natures they were inexorably drawn into conflict with one another. Still, they keep in touch socially and respect one another on the occasions when they come together between conflicts.

Unlike Persephone, Dame White is more open in her disregard of her husband's directives, perhaps only because she's slightly older. Regardless though, as with Persephone and the Merovingian, Dame White is intrinsically linked to Mr. Black by code put in place at the time of their marriage, and cannot easily extricate herself from the relationship. Fortunately, Dame White has been in the Matrix for some time, and is savvy about the politics and realities of life there. She has long ago given up direct action, choosing to instead use her children as proxies in her plans.


Gender: Female
Location: Rogers Way, Barrens.

Dossier: As one of the middle siblings, Amber knows she is unlikely to ever gain the highest position, so she has instead committed herself to the roles of spoiler and kingmaker. To this end she has created an extensive organization – the Amber Special Projects agency – to facilitate both intelligence-gathering and covert operations against other exiles. She craves all the knowledge she can obtain about her siblings' operations.

Amber is a smooth-talking sycophant who excels at deception and doubletalk that makes her look good no matter the outcome of a particular situation. She is willing to deal with any and all of her siblings, working both ends against the middle for Indigo or one of her parents, but in the end she's only out for herself. She has been working toward getting on Grisaille's good side, but is rapidly coming to the conclusion that he doesn't have one.


Gender: Female
Location: Bathary Row, Barrens

Dossier: A middle child, Cerulean is the only one of the siblings to turn solely to her mind as a source of influence. She invested heavily in understanding the infrastructure of the Matrix in an attempt to learn how to control it better and use its power against her siblings. She is convinced that Indigo's power base can be wiped away or redirected in this way, but she suffered an enormous setback when the Matrix was reconfigured in the wake of the Truce between Zion and the Machines. Much of the code she had stockpiled was wiped out, including parts of her own personal code that she had tried to hide. The result was severe damage to her RSI that has made her physically weak and infirm. She is now dedicated to accumulating more $Information than ever, and proving that her mind is more than capable of overcoming any amount of power her siblings can amass.

Cerulean makes her home in the waterfront of Bathary Row, where she has a strong grip on the flow of contraband goods and $Information. Her strong-arm is the Bathary Boys gang, a group of toughs whose defeat at the hands of the neighboring Disciple gang made them a perfect target of opportunity for her. Today the formerly brash gang is little more than her private army, with a leader handpicked by Cerulean for his pliant nature.


Gender: Male
Location: Stamos, Barrens.

Dossier: Created by Mr. Black without the involvement of Dame White, Grisaille is essentially a bastard stepchild, reviled by his step-mother who would as soon see him dead. Grisaille is equal in power to Indigo, and acts primarily as an agent of Mr. Black, though he knows that his father thinks of him as only a powerful tool.

In spite of their similar attitudes toward their parents, Indigo and Grisaille are dire enemies. Grisaille lacks the resources that Indigo can call on, but is more personally powerful, and more intelligent. It is only the fact that he is opposed by all of the siblings that keeps Grisaille in check.

Mr. Black disavows knowledge of Grisaille's actions and finds excuses not to punish him because it is most often to his advantage. Grisaille considers the other siblings to be incompetents, while they despise him for being Mr. Black's favorite when he's an outsider to their family. In truth Grisaille hates both Dame White and Mr. Black, and would eagerly see the entire twisted family destroyed, even if he had to sacrifice himself to do it. For the time being he simply waits, looking for the right opportunities.


Gender: Male
Location: Manssen Park, Barrens.

Dossier: As the second oldest sibling, Greene is intensely covetous of Indigo's status as eldest, and the perks and power it has brought him. He will do anything to get what Indigo has, and is willing to tear down and burn whatever he can't take for himself. Greene is aware of Rose's desire to get closer to Indigo and has convinced her that he intends to help her accomplish this goal. In reality he plans to use her as a Trojan horse if she succeeds in getting into Indigo's good graces. Greene and Grisaille have worked together against Indigo in the past, but Greene still hates his father's bastard as much as any of the others.


Gender: Male
Location: Guinness Lake, Barrens.

Dossier: As the eldest and most powerful of the siblings, Indigo holds court at Club Dante, a popular nightclub and hangout in the Guinness Lake neighborhood. Indigo is interested in amassing and consolidating power for an eventual attempt to usurp his father's position. He has operated cooperatively with Dame White for the most part, and is largely believed to be "Mother's favorite," but of course he plans to eliminate her once he gains his father's position. She naturally plans to get rid of him as soon as he has succeeded in destroying Mr. Black, which he fully understands. However, Indigo must still curry favor with Mr. Black in public in order to maintain the peace.

Indigo's will is enforced by the King's men, a gang of Exiles who follow his orders without question. However, he also enlists his siblings as pawns in his plans, which they hate but tolerate because Indigo can help them in their efforts to thwart the other lesser siblings. This allows Indigo to keep his siblings at each other's throats and continually weak, simply by shifting his favor from one to the other (a technique he no doubt learned from his parents). Indigo has a chill demeanor, and is almost impossible to agitate.


Gender: Male
Location: Lucero Point, Barrens.

Dossier: Second youngest of the siblings, Mandarin is a spoiled brat prone to rants at Dame White and Mr. Black about the unfairness of his siblings' treatment of him. Neither of his parents really care, but it's a convenient excuse for punishing someone on occasion, and they know Mandarin is the most likely one to tattle on his siblings if they were planning something against their parents. Mandarin is a fairly dim bulb in some ways, but he does has a shrewd and devious (if intensely selfish) mind. He is absurdly fixated on creature comforts, gorging himself on fine food and draping himself in rich fabrics that he is ill equipped to appreciate. He lacks even the rudiments of style or grace.


Gender: Female
Location: Southard, Barrens

Dossier: Youngest of the siblings, Rose is extremely insecure, and is obsessed with proving herself to the others. She is currently trying to impress her eldest brother, Indigo, believing that he will elevate her to his side if she pleases him. In reality he is only interested in using her as a tool against the others. Rose's emotions are fragile and volatile, making her prone to tear-filled rages if she feels embarrassed or insulted. Being accepted by her siblings and parents is the most important thing in her life, but these are often mutually exclusive goals and the conflict hurts her deeply.


Gender: Female
Location: Sobra Shores, Barrens

Dossier: Though she's not the oldest, or the youngest, or the smartest, Violet takes pride in the fact that she's the toughest. Dedicated to the fighting arts, Violet is easily the most martially proficient among the siblings. Though she has lost to the bastard Grisaille in a straight up fight before, she claims that was just a fluke. Violet often acts as an enforcer for Indigo, or one of her parents, though she's been known to form temporary alliances with others for one reason or another. The allegiances in the family are fluid, and nobody expects promises to last. If any of the siblings could be called truly mercenary, it's Violet. She's very egotistical about her "fighting form," and a little flattery goes a long way with her.

Posted by MxO Team

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