March 27, 2016
86. COSMO CORTEZ
Bronx, NY, USA, Earth (Core Reality); Late 21st Century
Power Rating: 1 – 100
POWERS, ABILITIES, WEAPONS & TOOLS
Cosmo is an incredibly powerful telepath.
My name is Captain Noble. I am a superhero, working for the US Government. This is an excerpt from my journal.
YEAR 11, DAY 72
A few days later we arrived in Tibet and began our search for Ramses. Shuttershock and I could tell the locals knew more than they were letting on. However, they were not willing to divulge any information. Once we saw the advanced water pumps and filtration systems in their villages, it was apparent why. The Pharaoh is a very smart man. He had no need to threaten the people and use fear to gain their silence. Everyone from peasants to princes knows what the Living God of War is capable of. Instead, he earned their loyalty by providing them with something they so desperately needed and that would improve their quality of living for centuries to come. It was a small price tag for Ramses to pay to gain such a gift. The villagers were fiercely loyal to him. Nevertheless, we continued our search. However, nothing turned up.
WEIGHT: 175 lbs.
So, with no sign of him, we knew the worst case scenario was at hand: Ramses and his crew had already entered the Himalayas. Shuttershock and I rested for a night and then began our search in the mountains the next morning. We flew over numerous trails and mountain ranges but found no evidence of recent travel or any signs of a hidden compound. All we could see were the beautiful Himalayas stretching far and high. With so much ground to cover, I figured it might take us weeks to go through every nook and cranny of the area to ensure no stone was left unturned. And by that time, it would probably be too late.
There was only one person who knew where and how to find him, and that was Attrition. But as I mentioned before, her mind was an absolute vault. She was resistant to all forms of interrogation and to this point, she was immune to telepathy. This was a fact that my superiors reminded me of when I called to insist they question her again. That’s when I decided to call in a favor from a friend of mine. His name is Cosmo Cortez.
Well, Cosmo and I are not actually friends. In fact, it’s difficult to really say what our relationship is. Cosmo is a 19-year-old student at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, also known as the prestigious MIT. About a year ago, I gave a lecture to Cosmo’s Advanced Hyper Studies Seminar. Afterwards I took some time to meet with students individually so they could tell me about the different projects they were working on. Needless to say, I was blown away by much of what I heard. But no project was more intriguing than Cosmo’s. He had teamed up with his friend and classmate Jimmy to “create a superhero.”
Now, you’re probably thinking, “what in the world is so groundbreaking about that?” And it’s a fair question. After all, there are dozens of would-be mad scientists out there, trying to develop hyper-serums and find other ways to gain powers. But Cosmo and Jimmy had another idea altogether. They wanted to take an ordinary man with no powers whatsoever, and make him THINK he had powers. Furthermore, they had hoped to take this powerless human and transform him into a hero that people knew and loved. And, what do you know, they were succeeding.
You see, Cosmo is a telepath – a very powerful one. And his pal, Jimmy Jist, is an equally powerful telekinetic hyper-being. They had found a recently laid-off accountant by the name of Willie Barton and decided to do a little experiment. Cosmo began to telepathically feed Willie the idea that he had hyper-abilities, such as enhanced strength, speed, the power to fly and the ability to move things with his mind. Then, when Willie attempted to act out one of these skills, Jimmy would use his long-range telekinesis to make it happen!
Before long, Willie had taken on the name “Captain KaBoom” (he’s an unabashed fan of mine), and was flying all around Boston and other New England towns, saving kittens from trees and stopping burglars from knocking off jewelry stores. Cosmo keeps a sustained telepathic link – reading his mind and feeding him ideas – and relays all of Willie’s thoughts to Jimmy, who constantly stays one step ahead of Captain KaBoom’s intentions.
This was the project that Cosmo told me about. Of course, in principle I was against the idea of these two kids putting an unsuspecting human in harm’s way, but Cosmo was so good at convincing me they had the whole situation under control. Now that I think of it, his telepathic abilities may have had something to do with me agreeing not to tell Willie or anyone else about the true nature of Captain KaBoom.
Either way, that brings us back to the situation at hand. We needed intel from Attrition’s unbreakable mind, and Cosmo Cortez was possibly one of the few people in the world who could penetrate it. I gave him a call and briefed him on what’s going on. At first he hesitated, but then the chance to navigate the mind of someone with the kind of secrets Attrition could be holding got the better of him.
Two hours later, my colleague, Lt Rashard Bonds, was knocking on Cosmo’s dorm room door. He took him (and Jimmy, whom he refused to travel without) to a helicopter and they flew to DC where Attrition was being held in a CIA containment unit. From what I understand, the kid and the warlord met for about 30 minutes. And then I got the call.
Cosmo wasn’t able to get much from her, but what he got was enough for us to go on. I got on the phone and spoke to him personally. He said her mind is protected by something he had never encountered before… but just like a computer encryption, it could be hacked. And he just happened to be one of the best brain-hackers in the world. He told me that he was able to retrieve a portion of a map with a series of coordinates in the Himalayas. He relayed the info, and sure enough it shrunk our search area down to a fraction of what it had been.
I thanked him and was preparing to bid him adieu when suddenly I heard an explosion in my earpiece! CIA Headquarters was under attack!