Alycia Chin

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Charade
CharadeS3.png
Publication Information
Created by Dave
First Appearance Issue 3; joined team Issue 30
Playbook The Reformed The Scion
In-Story Information
Real Name Alycia Chin
Other Aliases Alice Chan
Associates Chin Family: Achilles Chin, Hector Callado
Friends in Low Places: Finch, Lovelace, Mr. Cane
Abilities Martial arts and weapons; access to super-science; snark

Alycia Chin is a former supervillain and new member of The Menagerie.

Appearance

Alycia is of clear Chinese / Eastern Asian descent, with longish straight black hair, and deep-colored eyes that appear as violet under the right lighting.

She is of average height. While she has the training to wear appropriate clothes for any social circumstance (though she eschews high heels of any sort), she's most comfortable in casual clothing that would allow her to work under the hood of some hypertech vehicle she's building.

(Information on her Charade costume to follow.)

Biography

She has a long and complex history with Jason Quill, and for a few years took up the role of his nemesis, just as her father, Achilles Chin, was the villainous foe of Byron Quill. She warned publicly that she considered Byron to have killed her father during their final confrontation in Washington, DC, and so had declared vengeance on Jason.

Alycia was raised alone until she was nine years old, then gathered up by her father for training. In the period between ages 10 and 15 she was usually under her father's watchful eye and discipline, though there were long periods when she was sent abroad for education and for her own safety, including at least one known stint at "military school". She occasionally encountered Jason and his step-brother, Amir Quill, in the course of her father's conflicts with the Quills (see below). These youthful and teen encounters were full of mistrust and antagonism, but rarely any actual violence.

Publicly she was characterized by Jason as "cuckoo"; in private he seemed interested in, at the very least, saving her from her current lifestyle. (See also.)

After Dr. Chin's disappearance in the DC Incident, she was involved in a number of technology theft crimes and terrorist acts (though with no known fatalities), seemingly patterned after her father's work. These were apparently directed toward Alycia rescuing her father. It was unclear if she had taken over whatever organization her father oversaw, or was operating freelance.

After reaching her father in the Sepiaverse, and, with Jason, removing his hyper-genius qualities, she returned to the Prime Earth, participated in battle against the Vyortovians, then surrendered to AEGIS. AEGIS Special Agent Elizabeth Parker has been assigned her handler for future AEGIS purposes. The agency seems interested in using her, not just for information, but as a field asset embedded in the Menagerie. The team has accepted her as a member, even as Jason went to inactive duty.

Using Link's Heart Factory technology, Jason's memory gaps were patched by Alycia's analogous memories of the same events; this process also restored to Alycia most of the emotional content of those memories, which had been suppressed by her father. She has reached something of a rapprochement with Jason -- willing to help him, but unhappy over his quitting the team.

She is currently attending Gardner Academy as a senior, under the name "Alice Chan." She has recently become friends with Daphne Palin[1][2] (who does not know her background). Finally released from AEGIS custody, she is presently crashing with Summer Newman[3], with whom she has also begun an unexpected and cautious friendship. She has reconciled[4] with Jason, to the extent that they are now dating[5][6].

Beliefs

Alycia was raised to believe in Achilles Chin's "Great Mission" -- the freeing of humanity from authoritarian stifling of their potential, from oligarchies and plutocracies and theocracies and autocracies of all sorts. To this end, she still maintains a reflexively radical (and polemic) distrust of any power structure or institution, even if she has shifted dramatically away from her father's personal scheming to destroy enough of the status quo to let himself lead humanity to his aspired utopia. While she still holds political and economic institutions in disdain, she realizes that the ends rarely justify the means, and it is far too easy (as her father did) to let love of humanity ignore the harm one is doing to individuals.

Alycia is a duty-driven individual, feeling that commitments and loyalties are sacrosanct unless she, herself, as been betrayed.

While deeply suspicious of organized religion in all its forms, Alycia is herself deeply spiritual in an unstructured fashion. She has studied world religions (the better to destroy them as tools of the established power structure), and frequently swears invoking different world deities. While skeptical of frauds and unproven assertions, she is a believer in the spirit and the supernatural in principle, feeling those are transcendent elements that give value to what is otherwise a universe of chemical and physical reactions. This was a key component in her change of heart regarding the Newmans.

Achilles Chin was a master robot builder, and used robots in the physical training of his daughter, often with abusive / terrifying results[7]. He also inculcated in her a fear of uncontrolled Artificial Intelligence as potential threats to humankind. This led to initial hostility between her and the Newman family. Her recent realization, though, that the creations of Leo's Heart Factory have souls (sufficient to survive after death as ghosts[8]) has led her to an abrupt change in attitude; her trust of the Newmans is guarded, but she no longer considers them an existential robotic threat to herself or humanity.

Copies

Jason has seen several "copies" of Alycia. It is unclear which of these were operated or created by the real Alycia in some cases.

  • Trojan Alycia: He interacted with a holographic Alycia, who was apparently a trojan or projection in the Quill computer system by the real thing.
  • Security Cam Alycia: He engaged with a synthesized Alycia via security cam footage of her time working at the Quill Foundation warehouses, gaining insight into her personality. However, this Security Cam Alycia somehow struck down Jason at the end of the synthesis.
  • Travelycia: He created Alycia 79 ("Travel Agent Alycia" or "Travelycia") as a conversational companion from a randomly selected AI agent on the Quill computer (which agent usually handles travel arrangement) coupled with biographical and security footage of the real Alycia Chin. She appear to have suborned the Byron Quill Hologram, to the extent of keeping him from reprogramming her. Shut down by Jason when the real Alycia joined the Menagerie, she was recently stolen and restored from backup by the actual Alycia.
  • Li'lycia: He witnessed Li'lycia, a 10-year-old version, among the crowd at the AEGIS press conference, and later conversed with her; this appears to have been an interaction between Jason's subconscious and his nanobots, drawing on his memories of her and the info gleaned from Security Cam Alycia.
  • Ol'ycia: An older version of Alycia Chin, first seen in the Federal City Keynome chamber.

The Alycia Chin of the Sepiaverse was killed by that universe's Byron Quill as part of his war against Achilles Chin.

Gallery

See also here.

Early Encounters with Jason Quill

Documented / referenced encounters between the (real) Alycia and Jason, prior to the DC Incident.

  • Space Station Alpha One: their first encounter, at age 10.
  • Amsterdam: both were held captive in brothel that was a front for Nazis; Alycia saved Jason from drowning in a canal, when both were manacled.
  • Kazakhstan: both held hostage; after they escaped, the base was destroyed by Dr. Chin and Byron Quill's cooperation, to keep them from being pursued.
  • Ayers Rock: Alycia smiled
  • Kauai: at sunset; Alycia smiled
  • Antarctica: In their most noteworthy encounter, Alycia and Jason were caught on a rubber raft on a river under the Antarctic ice cap, after escaping from a death trap in a lost city there. The two were trapped in the dark for at least two days, before they were rescued by a joint effort of both Dr. Chin and Byron Quill. There was a fair amount of physical contact between them "to preserve body warmth," and some hints of sexual contact.

It's worth noting that Byron Quill and Dr. Chin mutually agreed to not target their respective children, and (as noted) occasionally cooperated to protect them both.

In the aftermath to Issue 17, Jason discovered that there were a number of other memories regarding Alycia that had been lost, perhaps through intentional meddling by his father, perhaps through the actions of the nanobots. These memories of Jason's include:

... Lhasa, Tibet. Ramoche Temple. Playing tag. ... Kuala Lumpur, arguing favorite books and hearing her demand you read Snow Crash immediately - the same memory you didn't recognize a few minutes ago. ... La Paz, Bolivia. Exploring the Mercado de Brujas for an afternoon. ... a tattered The Aleph and Other Stories in the mail on your twelfth birthday. ... a signed copy of Barry Ween, Boy Genius on your thirteenth.

There have also been multiple references to an early meeting in the Amazon, that involved a Monkey with a Hat. This has also been referred to as their "first" encounter.

Jason's lost memories have been subsequently restored through a memory patch from Alycia.

Killings

While under the influence of her father, Alycia killed people on multiple occasions. This information is known to AEGIS, but not necessarily to her teammates (though some may have guessed). Conflict over this was part of what drove a schism between her father and her. While she is still a believer in direct, even violent, action to resolve problems, and is unlikely to hesitate to kill if needful, her ethical constraints on doing so are much higher than they once were. Known deaths or assassinations attributed to her:

  • (Age 13) Hector Ortiz, Venezuelan drug lord, by sniper's bullet. Ortiz was an irredeemable narco-terrorist and criminal, responsible for multiple murders and massive drug trafficking. He also raided one of Achilles Chin's bases in Caracas, looting it and killing a number of Chin agents.[9]
  • (Age 14) Angela McIntyre, senior accountant at the Struan Consortium, by a poison in her toothpaste that cause a heart attack. McIntyre was a prospective whistleblower as to Struan activities; those activities were on behalf of the Chin organization. Alycia objected to killing a person whose actions were virtuous, but her father convinced her that the indirect consequences, harming the Great Mission, made the death necessary, so Alycia carried it out. The cognitive dissonance involved represented one of the first fractures in Alycia's relationship with her father.[10]
  • (Age 15) Personnel of Puget Base -- When AEGIS raided a Chin underwater base in Puget Sound, Chin ordered Alycia to lock down all bulkhead doors and flood the rest of the base, to block the way while Chin and Alycia escaped. Her actions (under duress) killed the thirty operatives at the base, and nearly killed the AEGIS agents on the raid.[11]
  • (Age 15) Colin Washington, British physicist whose research interfered with one of Chin's projects. She resisted killing another innocent, esp. when it meant that Washington's killing would also kill his wife and young daughter. She arranged for him to escape, while pinning it on a senior Chin operative. This break with her father's will, and refusal to kill, was never uncovered, as Achilles Chin was reported dead in the DC Incident less than a month later.[12]

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