History Literature / WildCards

12th Oct '17 7:11:58 PM renenarciso2
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Twenty volumes and counting, the series has had a somewhat rocky publication history. After publishing twelve volumes with ''Bantam'', the series switched first to ''Baen'' and then to ''iBooks'', before getting picked up again by ''Tor'' after a hiatus of seven years. ''Tor'' is also reprinting the older books in the series. The series has also been adapted for [=RPGs=] (''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}}'' first, ''TabletopGame/MutantsAndMasterminds'' much later) as well as several series of comics, most recently ''[[ComicBook/WildCards The Hard Call]]'' by Daniel Abraham.

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Twenty Twenty-three volumes and counting, the series has had a somewhat rocky publication history. After publishing twelve volumes with ''Bantam'', the series switched first to ''Baen'' and then to ''iBooks'', before getting picked up again by ''Tor'' after a hiatus of seven years. ''Tor'' is also reprinting the older books in the series. The series has also been adapted for [=RPGs=] (''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}}'' first, ''TabletopGame/MutantsAndMasterminds'' much later) as well as several series of comics, most recently ''[[ComicBook/WildCards The Hard Call]]'' by Daniel Abraham.
12th Oct '17 7:10:40 PM renenarciso2
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''Wild Cards'' examines, [[{{Deconstruction}} somewhat realistically]], the effects of a world where a small portion of the citizens have suddenly gained superpowers. But because the series is in part an {{Homage}} to superhero genre, there are some tropes involved that one does not normally find [[KilledOffForReal co-existing]] in the [[BackFromTheDead same story]]. There aren't many masked vigilantes, as they eventually end up revealing their secret identities or have them discovered. The mutated victims, the "Jokers", are regularly treated like scum, strung along by the government, and end up developing their own subculture. The superpowered "[[DifferentlyPoweredIndividual Aces]]" don't always go into crimefighting or villainy, either; [[CutLexLuthorACheck some of them parlay their talents into fame or private industry]].

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''Wild Cards'' examines, [[{{Deconstruction}} somewhat realistically]], the effects of a world where a small portion of the citizens have suddenly gained superpowers. But because the series is in part an {{Homage}} to superhero genre, there are some tropes involved that one does not normally find [[KilledOffForReal co-existing]] in the [[BackFromTheDead same story]]. There aren't many masked vigilantes, as they eventually end up revealing their secret identities or have them discovered. The mutated victims, the "Jokers", are [[FantasticRacism regularly treated like scum, scum]], strung along by the government, and end up developing their own subculture. The superpowered "[[DifferentlyPoweredIndividual Aces]]" don't always go into crimefighting or villainy, either; [[CutLexLuthorACheck some of them parlay their talents into fame or private industry]].
12th Oct '17 7:09:36 PM renenarciso2
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Ninety percent of those infected with the virus die horribly as their own DNA turns against them. Nine percent are mutated, gaining extra eyes, pincers for hands, or skin that bruises at the slightest touch. The lucky one percent not only remain physically unchanged, but they gain superpowers. And a negligible percentage of the one percent end up physically unchanged, but gain a superpower that isn't really super, such as the ability to change the color of the wallpaper around them. It is later determined that these numbers are actually wrong, and the number of infected was much higher than previously realized: many if not most of those infected were, in fact, apparently unaffected, ''but'' carried the infection latently, and could pass it on to the descendants as a recessive trait.

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Ninety percent of those infected with the virus die horribly as their own DNA turns against them. Nine percent are mutated, gaining extra eyes, pincers for hands, or skin that bruises at the slightest touch. The lucky one percent not only remain physically unchanged, but they gain superpowers. And a negligible percentage of the one percent end up physically unchanged, but gain a [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway superpower that isn't really super, super]], such as the ability to change the color of the wallpaper around them. It is later determined that these numbers are actually wrong, and the number of infected was much higher than previously realized: many if not most of those infected were, in fact, apparently unaffected, ''but'' carried the infection latently, and could pass it on to the descendants as a recessive trait.
12th Oct '17 7:07:56 PM renenarciso2
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''Wild Cards'' is a "shared universe" {{Superhero}} book series, originally conceived by Creator/GeorgeRRMartin (''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'') as a spin-off from an [[RoleplayingGame RPG]] organized by several Albuquerque-area authors. The world of ''Wild Cards'' is pretty much like ours, [[AlternateHistory until 1946]]. That year, the ruling elite of a world of aliens physically quite similar to humans decides to use Earth as the testing ground for a bioweapon in the form of a virus, later called Xenovirus Takis-A, or the "Wild Card" virus. The test sample is stolen by a pulp-style Nazi-sympathizer villain calling himself "Dr. Tod"[[note]]German for "Dr. Death"[[/note]], who releases the virus over UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity.

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''Wild Cards'' is a "shared universe" {{Superhero}} book series, originally conceived by Creator/GeorgeRRMartin (''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'') as a spin-off from an [[RoleplayingGame RPG]] organized by several Albuquerque-area authors. The world of ''Wild Cards'' is pretty much like ours, [[AlternateHistory until 1946]]. That year, the ruling elite of a world of aliens physically quite [[HumanAliens similar to humans humans]] decides to use Earth as the testing ground for a bioweapon in the form of a virus, later called Xenovirus Takis-A, or the "Wild Card" virus. The test sample is stolen by a pulp-style Nazi-sympathizer villain calling himself "Dr. Tod"[[note]]German for "Dr. Death"[[/note]], who releases the virus over UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity.
12th Oct '17 7:07:05 PM renenarciso2
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''Wild Cards'' is a "shared universe" {{Superhero}} book series, originally conceived by Creator/GeorgeRRMartin (''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'') as a spin-off from an [[RoleplayingGame RPG]] organized by several Albuquerque-area authors. The world of ''Wild Cards'' is pretty much like ours, [[AlternateHistory until 1946]]. That year, the government of a world of aliens physically quite similar to humans decides to use Earth as the testing ground for a bioweapon in the form of a virus, later called Xenovirus Takis-A, or the "Wild Card" virus. The test sample is stolen by a pulp-style Nazi villain calling himself "Dr. Tod"[[note]]German for "Dr. Death"[[/note]], who releases the virus over UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity.

to:

''Wild Cards'' is a "shared universe" {{Superhero}} book series, originally conceived by Creator/GeorgeRRMartin (''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'') as a spin-off from an [[RoleplayingGame RPG]] organized by several Albuquerque-area authors. The world of ''Wild Cards'' is pretty much like ours, [[AlternateHistory until 1946]]. That year, the government ruling elite of a world of aliens physically quite similar to humans decides to use Earth as the testing ground for a bioweapon in the form of a virus, later called Xenovirus Takis-A, or the "Wild Card" virus. The test sample is stolen by a pulp-style Nazi Nazi-sympathizer villain calling himself "Dr. Tod"[[note]]German for "Dr. Death"[[/note]], who releases the virus over UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity.
8th Jul '17 6:41:24 PM nombretomado
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* WhatTheHellIsThatAccent: Herne the Hunter from ''Dealer's Choice''. The character page on TheOtherWiki describes it as English/Welsh/Scottish/Jamaican, and it's never stated exactly where he's from.

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* WhatTheHellIsThatAccent: Herne the Hunter from ''Dealer's Choice''. The character page on TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki describes it as English/Welsh/Scottish/Jamaican, and it's never stated exactly where he's from.
8th Jun '17 10:13:18 PM nombretomado
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** ShapeShifting is a particular case in WildCards. Jokers' shapeshifts are often into hideous things, and then they get stuck in a ShapeshifterModeLock, unable to change into anything else, or back into their human forms.

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** ShapeShifting is a particular case in WildCards.Wild Cards. Jokers' shapeshifts are often into hideous things, and then they get stuck in a ShapeshifterModeLock, unable to change into anything else, or back into their human forms.
8th Jun '17 10:12:02 PM nombretomado
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* StockSuperpowers: This is a very, very long list. And not all the powers here have a trope because the WildCards authors were pretty inventive. Croyd Crenson, AKA The Sleeper, is speculated to be a unique malaria-like case of permanent re-infection. Croyd would be BlessedWithSuck, as he falls asleep, then wakes up having turned a different Wild Card every time, including Jokers, spending weeks to months in a coccoon-like metamorphosis. Said metamorphosis isn't painless and sometimes Croyd wakes up before completion. This is inverted into CursedWithAwesome, as Croyd

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* StockSuperpowers: This is a very, very long list. And not all the powers here have a trope because the WildCards Wild Cards authors were pretty inventive. Croyd Crenson, AKA The Sleeper, is speculated to be a unique malaria-like case of permanent re-infection. Croyd would be BlessedWithSuck, as he falls asleep, then wakes up having turned a different Wild Card every time, including Jokers, spending weeks to months in a coccoon-like metamorphosis. Said metamorphosis isn't painless and sometimes Croyd wakes up before completion. This is inverted into CursedWithAwesome, as Croyd
26th May '17 12:12:27 PM xcountryguy
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** [[spoiler:Jube The Walrus]]; Justified, since he's a spy [[spoiler: trained to blend into Earth culture]].

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** [[spoiler:Jube The Walrus]]; Justified, since he's a spy [[spoiler: trained [[spoiler:trained to blend into Earth culture]].



* AllYourPowersCombined: Tom Weathers (The Radical) has all the combined powers of Captain Trips' alternate personas [[spoiler: (Until they start turning on him, one by one, during the events of Suicide Kings).]]

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* AllYourPowersCombined: Tom Weathers (The Radical) has all the combined powers of Captain Trips' alternate personas [[spoiler: (Until [[spoiler:(Until they start turning on him, one by one, during the events of Suicide Kings).]]



* AmoralAttorney: Edward St. John "Loophole" Latham. He seems to think the court is basically a big game. How amoral is he? When the mother of Sprout - Mark Meadows' mentally-disabled daughter - hires Latham for the custody dispute, [[spoiler:Latham sets Mark's apartment building on fire while Sprout is inside, forcing Mark to dose up in front of witnesses to activate his Captain Trips powers to rescue her. With Mark's drug use exposed,]] the state takes Sprout away from Mark - only to find that the mother has committed suicide. Sprout is thus sent to an asylum, but Mark breaks her out and goes on the run. Latham collects his pay without a second thought. Many believe he owes his lack of a conscience -- and resultant skills as a lawyer -- to the Wild Card. [[spoiler: Latham doesn't, he is naturally that bad. His Card finally turns several novels in, and he gains the ability to grant [[BodySurf Jumping]] powers through penetrative sex. And he has a taste for teenaged boys and girls.]]
** Since Latham [[spoiler: became Prime after exposure to Typhoid Croyd, whose infection even allowed current Wild Cards to turn, it's certainly possible that he was an "Ace" attorney beforehand.]]

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* AmoralAttorney: Edward St. John "Loophole" Latham. He seems to think the court is basically a big game. How amoral is he? When the mother of Sprout - Mark Meadows' mentally-disabled daughter - hires Latham for the custody dispute, [[spoiler:Latham sets Mark's apartment building on fire while Sprout is inside, forcing Mark to dose up in front of witnesses to activate his Captain Trips powers to rescue her. With Mark's drug use exposed,]] the state takes Sprout away from Mark - only to find that the mother has committed suicide. Sprout is thus sent to an asylum, but Mark breaks her out and goes on the run. Latham collects his pay without a second thought. Many believe he owes his lack of a conscience -- and resultant skills as a lawyer -- to the Wild Card. [[spoiler: Latham [[spoiler:Latham doesn't, he is naturally that bad. His Card finally turns several novels in, and he gains the ability to grant [[BodySurf Jumping]] powers through penetrative sex. And he has a taste for teenaged boys and girls.]]
** Since Latham [[spoiler: became [[spoiler:became Prime after exposure to Typhoid Croyd, whose infection even allowed current Wild Cards to turn, it's certainly possible that he was an "Ace" attorney beforehand.]]



** Peregrine has hawk-like wings in addition to regular human limbs, although her power of flight [[spoiler: consists of winged flight and subconscious levitation. She discovers that when the levitation is blocked by her pregnancy.]]

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** Peregrine has hawk-like wings in addition to regular human limbs, although her power of flight [[spoiler: consists [[spoiler:consists of winged flight and subconscious levitation. She discovers that when the levitation is blocked by her pregnancy.]]



*** To put his sociopathy in perspective, he was quite happy to [[spoiler: attempt to nuke New Orleans, to get revenge on one person who kidnapped his daughter. AFTER he got her back.]]

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*** To put his sociopathy in perspective, he was quite happy to [[spoiler: attempt [[spoiler:attempt to nuke New Orleans, to get revenge on one person who kidnapped his daughter. AFTER he got her back.]]



** Deadhead channels the memory and personality from corpses by [[spoiler: [[ImAHumanitarian eating the brain]]]].
** In the first book, Fortunato reanimates a corpse (to get information out of the dead person), by [[spoiler: [[ILoveTheDead having anal sex with it]]]].

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** Deadhead channels the memory and personality from corpses by [[spoiler: [[ImAHumanitarian [[spoiler:[[ImAHumanitarian eating the brain]]]].
** In the first book, Fortunato reanimates a corpse (to get information out of the dead person), by [[spoiler: [[ILoveTheDead [[spoiler:[[ILoveTheDead having anal sex with it]]]].



* BrainCriticalMass: The default powerset of Takisian Psi Lords seems to be the result of successful epochal eugenics. The Psi Lords inherit their powers [[spoiler: and can partially grant them to human-Takisian children]].

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* BrainCriticalMass: The default powerset of Takisian Psi Lords seems to be the result of successful epochal eugenics. The Psi Lords inherit their powers [[spoiler: and [[spoiler:and can partially grant them to human-Takisian children]].



** Wally "Rusty". Oh, dear God. By ''Suicide Kings'', [[spoiler: both the child he sponsored and his first possible love interest are killed before his eyes, and he's traumatized by witnessing a ChildSoldier grooming operation.]] All of which could have been avoided if [[CassandraTruth anyone had listened to him.]]

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** Wally "Rusty". Oh, dear God. By ''Suicide Kings'', [[spoiler: both [[spoiler:both the child he sponsored and his first possible love interest are killed before his eyes, and he's traumatized by witnessing a ChildSoldier grooming operation.]] All of which could have been avoided if [[CassandraTruth anyone had listened to him.]]



* BroughtDownToNormal: [[spoiler: John Fortune]]. ''Twice'', to much angst on his part.

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* BroughtDownToNormal: [[spoiler: John [[spoiler:John Fortune]]. ''Twice'', to much angst on his part.



** Aces -- TheBeautifulElite who won the SuperpowerLottery. Takisian Psi Lords and warriors are technically Aces by breeding. There are telepaths among Nats, so the Takisians have most probably developed from that potential, as [[spoiler: humans and Takisians are biologically the same species -- they can mate and produce fertile offspring with partial Psi Lord powers.]] \\

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** Aces -- TheBeautifulElite who won the SuperpowerLottery. Takisian Psi Lords and warriors are technically Aces by breeding. There are telepaths among Nats, so the Takisians have most probably developed from that potential, as [[spoiler: humans [[spoiler:humans and Takisians are biologically the same species -- they can mate and produce fertile offspring with partial Psi Lord powers.]] \\



*** Another anomaly is Angelface, an extremely beautiful woman whom many consider a Joker because of her cripplingly hypersensitive nervous system and skin that bruises at the slightest touch, leaving her in constant pain. She considers ''herself'' to be an Ace, because [[spoiler: she spent a lifetime in a hospital bed after being run over by a cart in her late teens, until she turned her card and regained her health, strength, and youth]].

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*** Another anomaly is Angelface, an extremely beautiful woman whom many consider a Joker because of her cripplingly hypersensitive nervous system and skin that bruises at the slightest touch, leaving her in constant pain. She considers ''herself'' to be an Ace, because [[spoiler: she [[spoiler:she spent a lifetime in a hospital bed after being run over by a cart in her late teens, until she turned her card and regained her health, strength, and youth]].



* TheFederation: Apparently one spanning a few thousand planets exists. [[spoiler: Jube the Walrus is actually an alien scout inspecting Earth for them.]]

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* TheFederation: Apparently one spanning a few thousand planets exists. [[spoiler: Jube [[spoiler:Jube the Walrus is actually an alien scout inspecting Earth for them.]]



* HumanAliens: The Takisians. [[spoiler: They can interbreed with humans to produce fertile offspring, as Earth is possibly a Takisian LostColony.]]

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* HumanAliens: The Takisians. [[spoiler: They [[spoiler:They can interbreed with humans to produce fertile offspring, as Earth is possibly a Takisian LostColony.]]



*** Lizard King (Ace to Nat, [[spoiler: died shortly thereafter because only his Ace was protecting him from the consequences of his drug use]]).

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*** Lizard King (Ace to Nat, [[spoiler: died [[spoiler:died shortly thereafter because only his Ace was protecting him from the consequences of his drug use]]).



* InfantImmortality: Averted, as AnyoneCanDie, and that includes kids, small children, and babies. The Wild Cards universe is not a friendly place. In fact, WordOfGod states [[spoiler: that Kid Dinosaur, a BrattyHalfPint with saurian powers, was created just to show the whole inhumanity of the ''Egyptian Masons'' plot by having a new, innocent character with no influence in other story arcs graphically slaughtered]].

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* InfantImmortality: Averted, as AnyoneCanDie, and that includes kids, small children, and babies. The Wild Cards universe is not a friendly place. In fact, WordOfGod states [[spoiler: that [[spoiler:that Kid Dinosaur, a BrattyHalfPint with saurian powers, was created just to show the whole inhumanity of the ''Egyptian Masons'' plot by having a new, innocent character with no influence in other story arcs graphically slaughtered]].



* LivingShip: Takisian ships are [[spoiler: the domesticated form of a [[SapientShip telepathic spacedwelling species]] that they have bioengineered for use as vessels]].

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* LivingShip: Takisian ships are [[spoiler: the [[spoiler:the domesticated form of a [[SapientShip telepathic spacedwelling species]] that they have bioengineered for use as vessels]].



* MauveShirt: Several characters are explicitly mentioned by Martin as created from the start exactly to provide drama by dying horribly, specifically [[spoiler: Howler and Kid Dinosaur]], though he uses the term RedShirt.

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* MauveShirt: Several characters are explicitly mentioned by Martin as created from the start exactly to provide drama by dying horribly, specifically [[spoiler: Howler [[spoiler:Howler and Kid Dinosaur]], though he uses the term RedShirt.



* OriginalMan: [[spoiler: Or aliens who think they are at any rate.]]

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* OriginalMan: [[spoiler: Or [[spoiler:Or aliens who think they are at any rate.]]



** DisappearedDad: John Fortune's; [[spoiler: His father, Fortunato,]] went off to find himself.

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** DisappearedDad: John Fortune's; [[spoiler: His [[spoiler:His father, Fortunato,]] went off to find himself.



* NeverSmileAtACrocodile: "Sewer Jack" Jack Robicheaux, the alligator-shifter Ace, who could be counted on to act exactly like a real alligator when in that form. Ironically, this 1. doesn't apply to his last meal, 2. renders him controllable by Bagabond and 3. extends his lifespan [[spoiler: since alligators are immune to AIDS]].

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* NeverSmileAtACrocodile: "Sewer Jack" Jack Robicheaux, the alligator-shifter Ace, who could be counted on to act exactly like a real alligator when in that form. Ironically, this 1. doesn't apply to his last meal, 2. renders him controllable by Bagabond and 3. extends his lifespan [[spoiler: since [[spoiler:since alligators are immune to AIDS]].



** Popinjay has a recurring one that causes him to wet the bed. Resolved after he [[spoiler: pops Ti Malice into a place inspired by his nightmare]].

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** Popinjay has a recurring one that causes him to wet the bed. Resolved after he [[spoiler: pops [[spoiler:pops Ti Malice into a place inspired by his nightmare]].



* OutWithABang: The power of a female assassin Ace named Roulette, whose secretions upon orgasm could be a pleasure drug or a fast-acting and lethal poison. [[spoiler: Roulette learned to control her originally random power. She ultimately turned the Black Queen from Typhoid Croyd]].

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* OutWithABang: The power of a female assassin Ace named Roulette, whose secretions upon orgasm could be a pleasure drug or a fast-acting and lethal poison. [[spoiler: Roulette [[spoiler:Roulette learned to control her originally random power. She ultimately turned the Black Queen from Typhoid Croyd]].



* ReedRichardsIsUseless: Averted. Even under the assumption that his virologist background would allow Tachyon to work on curing AIDS, curing the Wild Card beats any other virus in urgency. The Wild Card spreads like the common influenza, has a 90% lethality rate, and can be used as a bio-weapon in its native state, as used by disease-powered Aces [[spoiler: and the Card Sharks]].

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* ReedRichardsIsUseless: Averted. Even under the assumption that his virologist background would allow Tachyon to work on curing AIDS, curing the Wild Card beats any other virus in urgency. The Wild Card spreads like the common influenza, has a 90% lethality rate, and can be used as a bio-weapon in its native state, as used by disease-powered Aces [[spoiler: and [[spoiler:and the Card Sharks]].



## artificially prolongs his time awake [[spoiler: by using amphetamines]] (largely because he's terrified he might turn the Black Queen in his sleep).

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## artificially prolongs his time awake [[spoiler: by [[spoiler:by using amphetamines]] (largely because he's terrified he might turn the Black Queen in his sleep).



*** Cyclone's daughter Mistral [[spoiler: Cyclone's Ace is actually telekinetic, and his Ace subconsiously changed his unborn daughter from carrier or latent to an Ace with the same abilites.]]

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*** Cyclone's daughter Mistral [[spoiler: Cyclone's [[spoiler:Cyclone's Ace is actually telekinetic, and his Ace subconsiously changed his unborn daughter from carrier or latent to an Ace with the same abilites.]]



*** Wall Walker AKA [[spoiler: Black Shadow]].

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*** Wall Walker AKA [[spoiler: Black [[spoiler:Black Shadow]].



** Roulette, Ace with a randomly triggering PoisonousPerson power. Her power to dispense either a pleasure drug or a lethal poison during coitus baited those tired of life. [[spoiler: Roulette later learned to control this power and became an assassin.]]

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** Roulette, Ace with a randomly triggering PoisonousPerson power. Her power to dispense either a pleasure drug or a lethal poison during coitus baited those tired of life. [[spoiler: Roulette [[spoiler:Roulette later learned to control this power and became an assassin.]]
11th Apr '17 12:54:54 PM Mullon
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# ''Literature/WildCardsAceInTheHole''

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# ''Literature/WildCardsAceInTheHole''''Literature/AceInTheHole''
This list shows the last 10 events of 131. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Literature.WildCards