As it gets closer and closer to the starting time of the conference, more and more people start showing up. Among those people are some of those who have been affected, and they take their spots atop nearby buildings or hovering in midair to watch the speech. A few of them even stand amongst the crowd, but none of them do anything to interrupt the procession; they all just watch and wait.
Finally, the Mayor steps out of City Hall, flanked by several members of his cabinet, and even more body guards. He notes the presence of the Supers dotting the lawn, but he looks like he was already expecting some of them to show anyways. As he approaches the podium, all whispering and chatter die out almost immediately, and then he begins his speech.
My beloved Rainport; I am here to address you during the crisis that has arisen just this past evening. What we have before us is a challenge unlike any other in the history of humankind. However, if there is just one single thing that I have learned in my life, it is that when you meet a challenge head on, and over come it, you become stronger because of it. This is just one more challenge that we, as a united people, need to overcome. Our nation has been beset through its turbulent history with difficulties associated with racism. As a people, we have fought against the inner demons that look at the color of another person’s skin, or the shape of their bodies, and caused us to make assumptions that in our eyes made them less of a human being. Today, we are not faced with such trivial differences, but truly amazing distortions of the human form. I have walked through these hospital wards and seen people who are not merely of another race, but seem to be an entirely new species in one individual. What we face here is the opportunity to truly define the nature of a human being… what is in their mind and in their soul. Another man might have walked through this hospital and seen monsters. What I saw was my fellow citizens of Rainport, people who through no fault of their own have suffered a change that may well be beyond our ability to undo, but they are all still people. Furthermore, those people in the hospital right now, put their faith in me, just as you did, when I was elected, and I shall NOT turn my back on them.
But our challenge goes beyond a mere change in some people’s looks. Also the people who have changed have developed some amazing abilities, things that seem to defy our conventions of what we thought to be possible. We are on the cusp of a paradigm shift, and we have the opportunity to look beyond the assumptions that made up our old world, and see into a new world that presents what seem to be infinite possibilities. Individuals have been gifted with powers that might seem to be magical in nature, something out of fantasy or mythology. More appropriately, perhaps, many of these gifts resemble what we might see in the modern fantasy of comic book superheroes. As a youth, I was a fan of Captain Amazing, Dr. Destiny, the Green Ghost, and countless other fictional heroes… and yet, there are people in this building who have powers that exceed those of even the most powerful fictional superhero imagined. Naturally, this raises a concern in everyone’s mind. For in a world of super heroes, there are also the super villains. It might be everyone’s wish that those who received these powers would be benign in their nature, but it is an old axiom that power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. I do not mean to put down the moral character of the people affected by this accident, and I truly hope that most will not use their abilities in a selfish manner, but the potential for abuse of these powers can cause the unchanged to be fearful, so I caution all who have such abilities be judicious in their use. Those those affected I say this: You have all been given great gift, and for the good of all humanity, I ask that you do not squander them.
Since our fair city is in such a state of unrest, I have communicated with the governor of our fair state, and together we have decided that, for the time being, a state of emergency shall be declared in the city of Rainport. It is my hope that our situation will stabilize soon, and the National Guard, which has been mobilized, can return to their civilian lives. Until that time, and until the state senate makes legislation on what is to be done regarding those mutated by the chemical agents, it is the declaration of both myself and the governor that any use of these supernatural powers on another citizen against their will shall be considered an act of assault at the very least. Any forceful violation of the sanctity of another citizen’s mind made to their detriment shall be treated as an act of rape. And any harm to another citizen using these powers shall be considered assault with a deadly weapon. We do not condone vigilantism, and if anyone wishes to use their gifts to assist the law enforcement authorities, we ask that they voluntarily register themselves at the Police Headquarters, where we are gathering a database of information in order to assist those affected by this accident. Those who wish to protect their “real” identies, may register under an alais if they so wish.
I urge all citizens, both those affected and those not, to remain calm, and for the present time, continue about your daily affairs. I have been informed there is no danger of lingering contamination from the accident. If you were within range of the accident and no changes have manifested, then it is likely that you have not been affected. If such manifestations occur at a later point, then it will have been because of previous contamination. There is strong evidence to show that those who have been affected are not ‘carriers’ of a condition that can be passed on. I urge all citizens to react to these affected individuals with sympathy and concern, and I urge all affected citizens, particularly those showing no outward sign of change, step forward, inform us, and assist the city government in helping all of you.
I have been informed that one individual among the affected wishes to address the city, and so, I would like to present the individual who calls himself, “The Man.”
At the last part, he stands aside from the podium and gestures towards City Hall, where “The Man” emerges. The Mayor claps appreciatively as he approaches the podium, and shakes his hand when they draw even.