Section 2 - Aftermath
A Small Town Turned Upside Down
- Name: Lt. James Hanson, AKA The city of Lester, Saskatchewan, Canada
- Nationality: Canada
- Political Affiliation: Unknown
- Education: High School Diploma
- DOB: 1/9/1921
- DOD: 1/17/2010
- Known Parahuman Abilities: Lt. Hanson had complete control over the subjective reality of the city of Lester, Saskatchewan. Those who entered become caught up in his mad fantasy and rarely if ever escaped.
History: Two weeks before the invasion of Normandy, Lt. James Hanson of the Royal Canadian Army received a letter from his wife in the rural community of Lester, Saskatchewan. His son, merely fourteen years old, had died in an accident. A month and a half before the allies liberated Paris, Lt. Hanson received another letter from his wife. She was divorcing him for another man. A month before the allies liberated Paris, Lt. Hanson led his squad across a bridge where they were cut down by German machine-gun fire. At that point, the bridge, and everyone on it, Allied or Nazi, vanished. Any person from either side of the contested ravine who attempted to enter the affected area similarly vanished. The fate of Lt. Hanson, and that of faraway Lester, Saskatchewan was only discovered by Talent Operation Group 124, a mixed group of Talent commandos, sent to ascertain the threat. The allies needed the crossing unimpeded and TOG 124 was deemed expendable enough to send in.
When the Talent commandos returned, they reported that the bridge had somehow become connected to the small rural town half a world away, held open by a Talent of extreme power and unquestioned insanity. They found themselves in a perfect, storybook, made-for-TV farming community of perfect weather, waving fields of grain, and the timeless rhythms of rural life. The postman was always on time, the local soda jerk always made perfect soda, and the young child of Lt. James Hanson was not only still alive, but the talk of the town. Only a few small details seemed out of place… like the stacked corpses of German soldiers in a hay cellar beneath an old barn, the “new farmers in town” who acted entirely like locals but barely spoke English through thick German accents, or the barely detectable hint of desperation in the eyes of the other inhabitants. TOG 124 did not belong in this perfect world and everyone they met knew it and seemed as if they were trying to warn the Talents in subtle, non-verbal ways to flee while they could.
Sadly, the only way out was through. They confronted Lt. Hanson’s ex-wife, along with her new husband, and eventually drew the Mad Talent out where they were able to piece together some details of what happened. As Lt. Hanson lay bleeding his life out on the stones of a French bridge far from home, his entire life seemed a cruel and meaningless joke. Something inside him snapped. At that moment, the citizens of Lester found themselves wrapped up in a Mad Talent’s fantasy, forced to play parts written for them. Somewhere in his mind, Hanson believed himself unworthy or unable to return to Lester himself, and so he assumed the persona of his dead son. After all, the lad would have had a better life with his stepfather than anything Hanson could provide.
In the confrontation with Hanson, TOG 124 was able to play upon his fantasies, causing him to pull even farther in upon himself. The connection to France faded, and the ravine was passable once more. The Allies moved deeper into France, the War consuming all attention.
But for the last 65 years, the rural farming town of Lester, Saskatchewan had been quarantined by the Canadian government. A no-go zone of barbed wire and military emplacements watched an empty perimeter mapped out by trial and error. Anything that entered never came out again.
In January 2010, a Section 2 Operation Team braved Lester to oppose the efforts of the Swords of Naciketas to rouse Lt. Hanson into expanding his demesen. The citizens of Lester, Saskatchewan were revealed to be soul-deadened and insane, having experienced the same monotonous sunday over and over for more than six decades. The mission resulted in Lt. Hanson consenting to finally die, leaving his son and ex-wife to Section 2 Operatives to “look after.”