It's a story not quite as old as time, though you'd be forgiven for thinking it was considering how popular the cliché is.

I went to sleep one night after completing a CYoA, and lo and behold, I wake up in the city of the protagonist of the world it was about with the choices I selected.

Brockton Bay.

Lots of "of"s there.

I got lucky I think.

Really, really lucky.

Sure, I don't have the strength to crack the planet in half, and I'm not fast enough to outrace death or time, looking at you, Barry Allen, but I have something arguably better.

I can make creatures with those abilities.

That's not all, of course, but it's the primary ability I'm going to advertise.

I'm going to shake this world, one way or another.

The best part? I was smart enough to take For Want Of A Nail, so I don't need to worry about a certain golden idiot genociding everything.

This is going to be fun.

--

Yawning, I stretch, readying myself for the day. I'm planning on opening my store today.

Due to my choices in the CYoA it was rather easy to set up the equipment I needed, and the store I was using came free due to my picking the reincarnation option. Let me tell you, suddenly having an entire extra 20 years of memories in my brain was weird.

Anyway, my body that I made for the CYoA had long white hair, red eyes, pale skin, handsome caucasian features, and was absolutely fucking shredded. Yes, it was slightly edgy/weeaboo-ish but it looked good, and I didn't plan on hiding my identity anyway, in-fact I actively advertised what I was going to be offering; perfect lovers, custom-made, with powers.

It seems simple on the surface, but my advertisements had everyone in a tizzy, and I mean everyone.

I'm certain the gangs in Brockton Bay wanted to "recruit" me immediately, but their leaders were at least smart enough to realise I may refuse to make stuff for them, and something as valuable as free powers in the form of lovers was not something that they were willing to risk.

The PRT tried to shut me down right away, sending off a Protectorate Hero to ask me to "cease and desist and please come work for us instead". Obviously, I said no, and as I hadn't actually used any powers at that point, I was in a bit of a legal gray-zone.

If they tried to strong-arm me, the gangs would come down on them like a corrugated crate full of metal bricks.

They knew it, I knew it, everyone knew I was playing them against each other, but generally everything went smoothly and I was ready to open for business.

I was advertising myself as Dr. Heartthrob, I don't think the PRT liked the easy comparison to Heartbreaker, an infamous and widely hated Master in Canada who mind controlled women into loving him.

Finally dressed and ready in the costume I'd ordered from Parian, (Normally she wouldn't have done so on something as flimsy as credit, but the offer of one free Heartthrob was enough to convince her.)

I set about opening the store, humming under my breath.

"Hello, World." I say, with a stunning smile on my face.

--

It didn't take long for someone to call in for an order, granted I wasn't expecting to see too many Capes in person, but I have to say I didn't see the PRT calling in first.

"Hello, hello! Doctor Heartthrob's Heartthrobs, where your greatest fantasies come to life! How can I help you?" I greet cheerfully.

Fucking nailed it, practiced that so much I can hear it ring around my head.

"You could help me by shutting down that store of yours." Emily Piggot, the last person I'd have expected to call me, responded bluntly.

Seriously, I'd expect Alexandria to first before her.

"While I appreciate the jest, I think we both know that's not going to happen. Anything else, dear customer?" I chuckle, tapping my reception desk.

Sighing, she made her business clear; "I've an order to make, due to the variability of these... Heartthrobs."

I swear I could hear her teeth grinding.

I could read between the lines most of the time, but I wanted to be sure.

"And the nature of this order? Be aware, Heartthrobs don't need to be lovers, they can be siblings, friends, neighbours... they can be operatives." I say, making sure she knew I was taking her seriously.

She was quiet for a moment, before responding.

"Let me make one thing clear first; I do not trust you." She said, emphasizing the "trust".

"That said, you've been vetted primarily on the basis that you cannot lie. Yes, we have ways of confirming this."

"All the better for me, at least I won't scam people and they'll know it." I nod.

"So, we'll be bringing the Wards in, one a week, in order to have dopplegangers made."

"Understood, I assume this will help with the whole "secret identity" thing?" I ask.

"That's need-to-know." She snaps.

"Huh, well here's some need-to-know info for you, I don't need much more than a blood sample and a brain scan for a perfect copy, most of the work is removing the... "soul" I guess you could call it." I scratch my chin. "Could also remove the powers if you want absolute deniability regarding their identities."

"Good, do that. It's hard enough with one set of powered brats running around." Did I hear frustration there?

"We'll send the Wards over with Miss Militia and Armsmaster, they'll have the NDAs for you to sign."

"Understood! Pleasure doing business with you, dear customer." I say, returning to my "salesman" voice.

"I wish I could say the same." She responds dryly, hanging up.

Looks like I'll be busy the next few weeks.

--

I received an email later that day detailing the dates the Wards would come in for their brain scans. I was under no illusions that this was a simple purchase and scan, they definitely wanted to see my equipment, see if there was anything illegal they could snag me for.

I don't begrudge them trying to build their resources up with a Tinker like myself, but I enjoy my freedom too much to let that happen.

I set up the brainscan machine in a seperate room, adjacent to the actual lab, which was rigged up with as many security systems as I could manage.

As for how I got ahold of them, let's just say Toybox is quick to react to a new rogue-aligned Tinker.

I offered a clone of myself and a free Heartthrob in exchange for high-tech security for my store.

Obviously the clone of me was inactive, and would remain so until my death.

I'd made them aware that it was less to do with the stereotype of clones killing the original, and more to do with my services being unique, and not wanting them to take over in that regard.

They understood completely, being business oriented themselves.

In the end, we came to an agreement stating that in the event of my death, my clone would awaken and be made aware of what caused my death, as it'd be an "old model" by then.

It'd already know about the deal with Toybox as it was made after we'd come to that agreement. They'd decide on the specifics of the Heartthrob over the next few weeks, and get back to me about it.

The week passed by quickly, despite business being slow.

It seems that the PRT being quick to make an order had spooked the gangs a little.

Understandable, considering that I'd made it clear that my Heartthrobs were completely customisable, right down to the power.

I expect either Coil or Kaiser will give me a call next.

I make my schedule public, so people will know when they can order, it works surprisingly well.

Humming, I sit down at my computer and decide to check out my PHO page.

--

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Topic: Introducing: Doctor Heartthrob's Heartthrobs!

In: Boards Places America Brockton Bay Capes Doctor Heartthrob

Heart_Doctor (Original Poster) (Unverified Cape)

Posted On Apr 5th 2011:

Hello, hello! I'd like to issue a warm greetings and an invitation to all!

My name is Doctor Heartthrob, and I'm announcing the opening of my store, "Dr. Heartthrob's Heartthrobs" later this week.

Now, I understand that some may be sceptical and others all too willing to... "recruit" me.

To that end, I'd like to make a few things clear;

1, despite my joyful disposition, I WILL take offence to hostile recruitment and refuse to serve any who attempt to do so.

You will gain nothing but my ire, I promise.

2, I'm under the assumption that my schedule will be busy, and I'm only one man, therefore I'm going to be making my progress through each purchase public. This doesn't mean anyone else will see what you ordered, just how long it'll take. I don't judge either, I'm simply happy to provide.

3, I'm stating now that I have very little in the ways of quarrels with the gangs of Brockton Bay (Aside from, y'know being racist, sexist, homophobic, druggies, etc.) and would ask you treat me as you would a normal service provider, I simply provide a service that no-one else can.

Thank you!

(Showing page 1 of 23)

Reave (Verified PRT Agent)

Replied On Apr 5th 2011:

Hello @Heart_Doctor, it'd be appreciated if you could come and deal with the paperwork you're going to need as a rogue, otherwise you may end up under scrutiny for illegal sale of Tinkertech and/or slavery.

Don't shoot the messenger, please.

Heart_Doctor (Original Poster) (Unverified Cape)

Replied On Apr 5th 2011:

Hello, Hello @Reave. Apologies for the paperwork, but you must understand my fear of not being allowed to leave the building after the paperwork is done. I'm a Bio-tinker after all, and we get a bad rap cause of the likes of Nilbog. Also, slavery should only apply if the living creature has human rights, right? Kind of hard to accuse me of slavery if they're custom-made flesh dolls with programmable minds and powers.

If I could get a guarantee that I can leave after, I'll come in for a bit and get it all done.

XxVoid_CowboyxX

Replied On Apr 6th 2011:

@Heart_Doctor is it true you'll make whatever is paid for? Could you make an Endbringer?

Would you make me a girlfriend?

Bagrat (Unverified Cape)

Replied On Apr 6th 2011:

Sorry for being late to the party, everyone, had to deal with an issue.

Anyway, @Heart_Doctor, I'm more curious about the price range and service types, could you provide us with an example or two? I'm not used to NOT being in the know.

Heart_Doctor (Original Poster) (Unverified Cape)

Replied On Apr 6th 2011:

Hello, hello @Bagrat. Take the time you need to sort out your own problems, the internet can wait. As for the price range, that all comes down to whatever features you want, the Size of the Heartthrob, and if you want to give it powers.

Features range from personalities to physical design, and is where most of the work is.

Size is the general mass of the creature, and encompasses durability and density as well. Powers are entirely different story, those I need to design from the ground up, from how they work to how they're expressed, everything matters, and a single mistake could mean several deaths, crippling injuries, or the dissatisfaction of the customer later on, so I take it very seriously when powers are requested.

Prices can go from $100 USD all the way into the millions, depending on specific requests, size, interaction capabilities, and other doodads and nonsense.

To give you an idea of what would cost what, I'd make a puppy of no specific breed for $100 USD, and if you wanted, say, your own personal Siberian? Several million, easy.

Hope this clears it up a bit, and sorry for the lack of actual prices, I have a terrible memory, and I'm not going to go looking for them right now.

@XxVoid_CowboyxX In order: Yes, possibly, and not unless you've got the money.

Mac's Dual Rocket Propelled Grenades

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

Damn it, @XxVoid_CowboyxX, why are you being weird again?

On the other hand, I don't blame him. A custom-made girlfriend with superpowers? I can understand the appeal. Now, where'd I leave my wallet...?

Brocktonite03 (Veteran Member)

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

Good old Brockton Bay, home of terrors incomprehensible to the human mind, drug dealers Nazis, a literal dragon, and now, waifus. Actual Waifus. This might be the only reason to stay here, or maybe I'm as desperate as @XxVoid_CowboyxX. Hey, @Heart_Doctor, can I purchase a Heartthrob via credit? I'll pay you back... eventually.

Heart_Doctor (Original Poster) (Unverified Cape)

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

Hello, hello @Brocktonite03. Sorry, credit doesn't pay the bills unfortunately, and I don't trust anyone enough to pay on a plan, so that's out too. Better start saving, friend!

Then again, you don't need to pay millions for a Heartthrob, just go for more general customisation if you're interested, the prices only get higher for more specific requests.

XxVoid_CowboyxX

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

Hey, I'm not desperate @Brocktonite03! I just want someone to cuddle!

ThrowAway12942

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

@Heart_Doctor, do you take dirty money? (I.e. stolen money.) Not that I'd do that, but you are in a city with several gangs and Capes.

Heart_Doctor (Original Poster) (Unverified Cape)

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

I'm not sure what the procedure would be there, @ThrowAway12942. I'm not going to say no to money, but I'd also have to let the boys in blue know, so I can be compensated if they need to take it. @Reave, do you have any idea how that'd go?

Reave (Verified PRT Agent)

Replied On Apr 7th 2011:

@Heart_Doctor, first I'd advise not to take the money in general, as that could be considered evidence, and you'd not likely be reimbursed for ill-earned money despite not being the criminal who stole it.

I'll have to talk to my superiors about it.

End of Page. 1, [2, [3] ... [21, [22, [23]

Getting off of PHO, I stretch.

Some of those were really good questions, they gave me ideas too.

I'm not going to bother reading any more at the moment, though.

I'm expecting visitors, after all, and it'd be rude to keep them waiting.

--