So yeah, a few years ago I got really invested in Hero Factory (with the absence of Bonkle and all). Like many users I've seen here, I felt the the concept behind Hero Factory was actually really cool, but was undermined by a lack of story. So two years ago, I decided to write a more detailed account of Hero Factory, centered around a rookie rising through the ranks (unintentionally similar to the concept of the first TV series). I recently rediscovered it, and after cleaning it up a bit, decided it was good enough to put on here.
(Note: This story takes place between the events of Ordeal of Fire and Breakout.)
So without further ado, I present to you...
Chapter 1: New Beginnings
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WARNING! THE FOLLOWING ARTICLES ARE CONFIDENTIAL! IF YOU DO NOT HAVE PROPER CLEARENCE TO VIEW THESE FILES, A HERO RECON TEAM MEMBER WILL TRACK YOU DOWN. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
Every day at the Hero Factory, a new hero is designed by robotic specialists who work around the clock to make sure that each and every product turns out the maximum amount of efficiency. One of these specialists, Alan Servo, just happened on his lunch break in the cafeteria with his fellow worker, Tom Gears.
“So,” said Alan, “what do you think of Mr. Makuro’s new plan to improve the building process?”
“It’s ridiculous!” replied Tom, “after the Upgrade we can’t possibly make it any more efficient! It’s hard enough trying to build heroes without trying to think of ways to improve them.”
“Yeah, I guess so,” said Alan as he finished up his iron and bolt sandwich, “but you have to admit that we’ve come a long way in the past few months.”
“But they’re all minor improvements! He’s expecting us to build some sort of super machine! There are limits to what we can do!” argued Tom, “I just don’t understand how he thinks it’s possible!”
“Who thinks what is possible?” came a voice from behind the two engineers. They turned around to see the founder of the company, Yamamoto Makuro, standing behind them with a look of bemusement on his face.
Alan stood up quickly. “Oh n-nothing Mr. Makuro, sir,” he stammered, “We were just getting ready to go back to the design lab, weren’t we, Tom?” He kicked Tom slightly in the leg.
“Oh yes, we were,” said Tom while getting up, “We just love going back to work on our, uh, projects.”
“Hmm,” said Mr. Makuro. “Alright then. I suppose I should let you go.” Tom and Alan both nodded their heads viciously while starting to move toward the exit.
“But before you that,” continued Mr. Makuro, “Tell the boys down there that I’d like a new kind of hero. Something a little more efficient. Do you think you can do that?”
“Oh, yes sir, Mr. Makuro,” said Tom, “We’ll do just that.”
“Good. Good,” said Mr. Makuro. “Now as for today’s model, I like the idea of a hero who is good with swords. Do you think you could accomplish that?”
“Yessir, we’ll get right on it,” said Alan.
Tom and Alan continued their walk towards the design lab. Once they were out of earshot, Tom said, “More efficient? How does he expect us to do that? And swords? What time period does he think we’re in, the Middle Ages?”
“Yeah,” chortled Alan, “a hero that uses blades? It would never work out.”
A spark, coursing through his body. Light was everywhere, and yet nowhere at the same time.
The robot woke up. He couldn’t seem to remember anything.
He sat up and looked around at his surroundings. It appeared that he was on some sort of metal bed in a room full of equipment. Bright lights hung from the ceiling. There were some very strange objects hanging on the wall, some of which looked like they might hurt.
Glancing down at his lime green hand, he noticed a small bit of writing on the plate of armor attached to his wrist. It said, ‘Blade-2.0’, then farther down, ‘85-954’.
“Is that my name,” he thought, “Blade?”
Just then, a female robot came into the room. “Hi there,” she said, “How are you feeling?”
He tested out all of his joints, and discovered that they were in good order. “Fine,” he replied, “But I’m a little confused. Where am I, and how did I get here?”
“Oh I’m so sorry,” said the lady, “I almost forgot. You’re at the Hero Factory Assembly Tower. You were just assembled a few minutes ago.”
“Oh,” he said, still feeling very mystified.
“Hero Factory is an organization that builds and sends out heroes that respond to problems across the galaxy.” Despite the smile that accompanied the words, the lady spoke them like she had done so a thousand times.
“Oh. Am I one of these heroes?” Blade asked, an incredulous look on his face.
“Yes. You were built to save people’s lives, whenever, and wherever they might be.”
The robot thought about this for a moment. He did feel a strong spark of goodness that seemed to emanate from the symbol on his chest.
“Okay then,” he said hesitantly, “so how come I’m not out saving someone right now?”
The lady laughed. “You need training before you can go out on a mission!”
“Oh. I guess that would make sense,” Blade said, looking embarrassed.
“Don’t feel bad,” the lady said, “You’re not the first Rookie to think he can go off without any training. And anyway,” she added, “I’m just about to turn you over to Carbon. He’s a retired hero who’s going to be your training commander until you are assigned to a team.”
“But before that,” she continued, “we need to know your name.”
“My name?” he asked.
“Yes. Your mission name is Blade, but we need to know what you would like your primary name to be.”
Blade thought about this for a moment, but couldn’t think of a name to call himself. “Do you have any suggestions for me?” he asked.
“Well, there is a considerable list to choose from,” the lady said with a smile plastered on her face. “One of the most popular names we currently have is William, but there’s also Frank, Paul, Joseph, Terrence, Matthew, Ian, Rick-“
“Rick,” Blade interrupted, “I want to be called Rick.”
The lady continued her smile, but it was a little too wide to be genuine. “Alright then. I’ll just stick that in the mainframe-” she stopped to type something on a digi-tablet, “-and there we go. Now Rick Blade, I’m going to send Carbon in, and he’s going to tell you the rest of what you need to know.”
“Okay,” said Blade.
The lady left the room. A couple minutes later, a blue and bulky figure walked through the doorway.
“Are you Blade?” he asked with a gruff voice.
“Yes,” Blade replied, “are you my training commander?”
“Yes. My name’s Xavier Carbon, but you should just call me Carbon,” he said, a slightly annoyed look on his face. “Now if you can get up, I’ll show you around the facilities.”
Blade got up and followed the senior hero out of the room. First they went to the training spheres, where Carbon said rookies went to hone their skills before they could go on actual missions. Blade noticed a combat simulation going on inside one of the spheres. It looked like a red hero was taking on an orange villain with a propeller on its back.
Having visited the spheres, they then went to the command center. Inside, dozens of technicians and lab assistants were rushing around, taking notes on digi-tablets, talking on headsets, and observing the dozens of holographic globes surrounding the room.
“These guys are the brain of the whole organization,” Carbon said. “They direct heroes on their missions, and try to ensure that they don't break local laws while out saving the day.” Carbon said this last part bitterly, as if he meant it as an insult to the people in the room.
Next, they went to the armory, a huge room filled with weapons of varying types and sizes. A target range was set up on one side of the room, and Blade could see a hero testing some sort of orb launcher. “Before you can start your training,” said Carbon, “you’ll need to pick out a weapon to train with. I’m not going to let you pick one out now, but you’ll get your chance tomorrow when training begins.”
As they left the expansive room, Blade couldn’t help but notice some swords shoved into in a corner, looking like they hadn’t been moved in a long time. “That’s interesting,” Blade thought to himself. “I wonder why those are over there?”
Finally, they stopped at the bunkhouse. Inside were rows of bunks stacked up on top of each other, separated by thin metal walls. Unlike the rest of the rooms they had visited, the room was completely empty. Carbon walked over to a row entitled “Row G”, and showed Blade a bunk on the second level titled '11643'. “This is where you’ll be staying when you’re not training or on missions,” Carbon said with his gruff voice.
“This is all so…fantastic!” Blade couldn’t help but exclaim.
“Yeah, well don’t get too used to it, rookie,” Carbon said in a low voice. “Once you get on missions you’ll hardly be here long enough to say the word ‘fantastic’. Anyway,” Carbon continued, “Your training starts at 6:00 A.M. tomorrow. I suggest you get some sleep before then.”
With that, Carbon turned and left the bunkhouse. Blade sat down on his bunk and took a deep breath. It was a lot to absorb in one day. For some reason, he thought back to the armory, and the swords contained within. He couldn't explain it, but he felt a connection to those items that were in the corner, all dusty and covered in cobwebs.
“You’ll get your chance tomorrow,” Carbon had said. The prospect of choosing his weapon seemed exciting to him. As he got ready to sleep, he smiled and thought to himself, “Tomorrow is going to be an amazing day.”
If only he knew how wrong he was...