When nerdy insular Drew Duayne saw his wealthy socialite parents gunned down by a laughing criminal, he ran. After several months the search was called off and he was declared missing, presumed dead. Ten years later, he returned.
Drew had fled into the sewers, hiding in the comforting darkness. Silence enveloped him as he considered his fate and the evil he had faced that day. That was when they came. The Rats.
They brought him food and water, kept him warm in the cold dark. Their chatter filled his mind as they showed him the secrets of the Under City. He learned the most forgotten sewer routes, the ancient caves that speak of a time before civilised man. They showed him how to use the shadows, and when to choose the right moment to attack. He also saw what it means to go against the law of the pack; justice should be swift, absolute and without mercy.
When the time was right, they showed him the way back into the light.
Drew reclaimed his heritage as head of Duayne Industries, secretly funnelling off the R&D budget to craft a secret base and array of vehicles, weapons, armour and equipment. When the darkness falls, Ratman roams the streets bringing justice – swift, absolute and without mercy.
Not the best render in the world. Picture Batman but skinny, brown and no cape. Got that? ‘Kay.
Dirty little secret: At the centre of it all in the deepest dark sits The Rat King, immortal, silently plotting, using the weakest and most vulnerable of human children to unknowingly forge an army of conquest. And as for the laughing criminal who killed Drew’s parents – well, every King needs a Jester……
Notes: Much as I like Batman, his origin story is a bit crap, isn’t it? I mean – he sees a bat from his bedroom window and decides to become Batman; what’s that about? He could have seen a tree and become Treeman, or the Moon and turned into Moon Knigh… I mean, Moonman. Heck, we could have Cloudman running around catching the crooks if he’d looked up five minutes earlier. The bats did nothing for him except provide a fashion theme. Big woo. So here’s my take where the Rats aid poor Drew, care for him, nurture him and become (should he ask it of them) and entire frickin’ ARMY for him. Bats? Bats are for wusses.
Supporting characters: Colin (weedy sidekick wannabe); Nighthawk (an earlier Colin, now fully grown), Arnold (butler, secretly in the pay of the Rat King), Ratgirl (teenager, also taken in by the Rats); Ratwoman (slightly mad lady with a rat fetish); The Jester (arch enemy), Ratmite (don’t ask).
Stats as per Costumed Adventurer archetype, Mutants & Masterminds, Second Edition page 18. Here’s the direct link to the whole of Chapter One (which includes these stats, and more), for free!
(Note to self: Getting behind on my ICONS and Risus Superheroes versions. Must fix that.)