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Brood Queen Hannah Connover (X-Men character) (Marvel Comics) broodlings 1/3

Hannah Connover the Brood Queen


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game
  • This entry assumes basic knowledge of the Brood, and uses some of the terminology from our main article about them.

Background

  • Real Name: Hannah Connover
  • Marital Status: Married
  • Known Relatives: Reverend William Connover (husband)
  • Group Affiliation: Glory Day Ministry ; Queen of her own Brood
  • Base Of Operations: Mobile with the Ministry
  • Height: 5’5” Weight: 135 lbs.
  • Eyes: Light brown Hair: Light brown to strawberry blonde


Powers and Abilities

Hannah normally stays in human form and does not do anything physical. However, she seems to have a consequent amount of charisma, willpower and spiritual resolve. She could resist full assimilation by a Brood Queen — partly out of luck and partly due to her faith and willpower.

Hannah can morph into a large Brood (a Queen) with great strength, powerful stingers, etc. – though she was only seen doing that once. Based on the precedent of Harry Palmer she probably had superhuman strength even as plain little Hannah, and seemed to have even greater strength (enough to batter aside a Brood Firstborn) in her full-sized Queen body.

Neither Hannah nor her Brood ever deployed wings or flew.

Children go where I send thee

Before her epiphany, Connover implanted Brood embryos into a number of humans. These seem to be generally similar to those we’ve called “Clan-1988 Infiltrator Brood” on writeups.org, in that they can look and think just like the host did prior to implantation.

Connover’s Brood is a bit different from the mainline Clan-1988 Brood infiltrators, though. By default, they are unaware of their Brood nature ; the only thing they know has changed is that they are now fanatically loyal toward Mrs. Connover and ready to die for her.

If their Queen is threatened or summons them, they will partially or fully become Brood physically and mentally, and fanatically defend the Queen.

Hannah Connover and her husband

Even when they manifest as Brood, Connover’s broodlings do not seem to be as evil as most Brood – they are still brutal, xenophobic, aggressive and fanatical, but that’s better than the mainstream Brood hunter. Apparently, they all remain close to their Queen, either by joining the Glory Day Ministry or by travelling near it.

Even as humans they come across as creepy and cult-like in their devotion toward Hannah. This seems understandable though, as they all were cured from grave diseases by Mrs. Connover, up to and including terminal cancers.

These peculiarities aside, Mrs. Connover’s Brood had abilities similar to that of an average Brood specimen (see the main Brood entry). Like the Brood Mutants, they return to human form when killed.

Hannah’s broodlings usually adopt an hybrid form with a Brood-like face over a human head, and tentacles instead of arms, but the rest of their body remains more-or-less human (sufficiently so not to damage their clothing). When they enter a frenzy they become fully Brood. They look more reptilian and less insectoid than Clan-1982 Brood.

Whereas normal Brood have a compulsion to obey their Queen unquestioningly (a CIA, in DC Heroes terms), Connover’s were compelled to protect her at all costs, even against her direct orders. If their Queen is under deadly attack, nothing can prevent the broodlings counter-attacking in a frenzy, even if that is clearly suicidal.

The Firstborns called Connover’s Brood “broodlings”, probably to mark contempt and caste superiority. Given the absence of alternatives, the term stuck with everybody, including Connover.


History

Mrs. Connover was the wife of a famous Evangelical minister. William Connover is the head and founder of the travelling religious movement the Glory Day Ministry, sometimes called the Connover Crusade.

This big-tent preacher criss-crosses the Southwest of the US, and occasionally beyond, to spread the gospel. Hannah herself did not seem to be particularly religious by US standards, though.

William Connover became notable as one of the very first major religious figures in the US to align himself with the pro-mutant rights movement – despite the catastrophic precedent established by evangelists such as the famous Reverend William Stryker.

In 1988 the Ministry set up its tent in Red Rocks, near Denver. At that point the X-Men were conducting a search-and-destroy operation in Denver against the Brood. A number of local mutants had been turned into Brood by the aliens, allowing them to meet the X-Men on nearly equal terms.

The battle raged piecemeal throughout Denver, and most Brood mutants were slain. The last survivors fled to Red Rocks and stumbled upon the Ministry during a sermon.

Hannah Connover and her Brood clan in mostly human form

The Brood Queen, hosted by a paramedic named Harry Palmer, took Mrs. Connover hostage on stage whilst the X-Men killed its last cohorts. At that point, Wolverine had been implanted with a Brood embryo and was turning Brood.

Mr. Connover, assuming that he was witnessing some sort of demonic possession, insisted on providing solace and support to Wolverine as the mutant’s healing factor killed the embryo and reverted him to his normal state. Wolverine then immediately proceeded to save Hannah Connover by killing Palmer.

Famously, Reverend Connover then stated in front of television crews that the mutants had saved them and not attacked them, and that humans should respect mutants as they were all loved by the Lord. This statement proved, as can be expected, quite controversial and raised the profile of the Ministry, but Connover remained adamant about his sincere beliefs in tolerance.

Unbeknownst to all, during the fray, a reserve Brood agent hosted by paramedic Josey Thomas infected Mrs. Connover with what turned out to be a Brood Queen embryo.

Hail to the Queen, baby

Though in her 30s, Hannah Connover had long suffered from arthritis in her hands. Thomas, who was present as an EMT during the sermon, noticed this and told Connover that she had something against arthritis in her ambulance. Once both women were out of sight Thomas morphed into a Brood and infected Connover.

Since impregnation is generally thought to be the province of Queens, one imagines that Josey Thomas was some sort of reproduction technician with a special biological payload. Thomas’s reasoning was presumably that, as a member of a travelling ministry, Hannah would have ample opportunities to create a network of Brood sleeper agents over a large area.

Initially the plan worked just fine. Connover, just like Palmer before her, could fully pass for human but was a Brood whenever it wanted. It implanted a number of humans with Brood embryos, making them Brood.

Hannah Connover and two of her Brood in human form

Many of the implantees were sick persons who had come for faith healing. The Glory Day Ministry had developed a reputation for such. During the 1988 fight, Reverend Connover had appeared to heal Wolverine of Brood infection on live TV during the attack – though the minister himself never described what happened as a miracle.

Days later his wife’s arthritic hands were suddenly fixed as a side effect of Brood conversion. Hannah Connover then started healing petitioners – by implanting them with her embryos, who can fix almost anything wrong with their host body as they develop.

This attracted yet more petitioners. How many people were ’healed‘ and converted into Brood by Hannah is unclear, but there were at least two dozens.

Surfing with the alien

However, the Queen/Hannah Connover became wracked by doubt as her human personality, which was supposed to be but a remnant used as a disguise, spoke to her Brood self and struggled for dominance. One night, whilst listening to her husband giving a sermon, Hannah had an epiphany and became a Born-Again believer of the Glory Day ministry.

The psychological shock restored her human persona, and she immediately knew what she had done while still in her Brood mindset – and how many people she had infected.

Hannah Connover's Brood clan telepathically summoned

Hannah Connover was thus both the first human known to survive Brood implantation, and an extremely rare example of a Brood renouncing its values and reverting to the host’s personality. She was both a Brood Queen and Hannah Connover, with Hannah being unequivocally dominant.

Given what we know of the Brood, this presumably was possible due to a lack of telepathic contact with the Brood over-Queen, the Mother Of Us All. Perhaps Hannah’s Brood self had some sort of condition crippling its telepathy.

This led Hannah into depression and guilt, as she realised everything that she had done. She had no idea what to do, or what to tell the Brood soldiers fanatically serving her. Mrs. Connover did not dare tell her husband – she feared that if he stopped loving her she would fall under the sway of the Devil, as represented by her Brood side. She stonewalled William whenever he noticed something wrong.

The Mother Of Us All telepathically realised that one of her daughters had gone native. Furthermore Josey Thomas, who continued to monitor Mrs. Connover, provided alarmist reports out of jealousy.

Hannah Connover's Brood guards

After telepathically arguing with Connover and threatening her in her dreams, the Mother Of Us All sent a pod of Firstborns to Earth, to liaise with Thomas and terminate the deviant Queen.

However the telepathic traffic was detected by Jean Grey, and a cadre of X-Men was flown to the Ministry to investigate.

Dies Iræ

Though the mission was a search-and-destroy one, Grey telepathically determined that Hannah was mentally human and benign. As the X-Men were discussing what to do, Josey Thomas led the pod of Firstborns to Connover.

The Firstborns had orders to kill everything that had been in contact with the deviant ; they killed Thomas then attacked to kill Hannah, all of her ’children’, all humans associated with her and finally themselves.

Sensing that their Queen was in danger, all of Hannah’s Broodlings activated and rushed in to defend her, though they were vastly outmuscled by the Firstborns. Even the X-Men, who decided to defend to Connover, were forced to retreat with Hannah.

Mrs. Connover ordered her Brood to stand down and not attack the X-Men, then asked the mutants to kill her. She saw herself as a danger for humanity – she might one day revert to her Brood mindset, and if she didn’t the Mother Of Us All would keep sending troops to kill everyone. The X-Men refused and Hannah had her Brood delay them so she could flee.

Once Hannah was gone her servants broke contact and rallied to her – but the Firstborns found them. All of Hannah’s Broodlings were killed and the X-Men intercepted the Firstborns, forcing Mrs. Connover to flee.

Unable to find the renegade Queen, the surviving Firstborns took her husband hostage to force her to show up and die. The plan worked – though Hannah showed up in full Brood Queen form, her intent was to save her husband and get killed. However the X-Men again intervened, executing on their plan to plunge Hannah Connover into cryogenic sleep.

Thinking that Connover was dead, the two remaining Firstborns killed themselves to end their mission.

Hannah Connover in full Brood Queen form

Hannah Connover was transferred into a suspended animation pod at the X-Mansion. The next step was to eventually ship her to Muir Island to run a full research program into Brood physiology and possibilities of reverting the transformation.

Reverend Connover, who had witnessed Hannah’s last battle and saw the X-Men putting his wife on ice to save her, agreed to cover up what had happened, and continued his ministry.

What happened to Hannah Connover after she went into suspended animation is unknown.


Description

See illustration.


Personality

Connover is horrified by what she has done, her Brood nature and the danger she poses. She’s very strong and level-headed, however, and is trying to do what’s right for her husband and the world. She’s deeply in love in William and is trying to spare him as suffering and to be true to his values.


Quotes

“Look at the facts. It’s the only logical choice. I have to die. I am a Brood Queen. It’s not something that I chose to be. I thought I was going to be cured of my arthritis. Instead, I was implanted with an embryo Queen egg – it changed me into part of the Brood. I am a Brood Queen and I have infected others. The broodlings facing you are mine.”

“Let my husband go free and I will surrender myself to you.”

“The Lord is my shepherd ; I shall not want.”


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Mrs. Connover

Dex: 05 Str: 07 Bod: 05 Motivation: Unwanted Power/Love of Christ
Int: 04 Wil: 04 Min: 08 Occupation: Minister’s wife
Inf: 08 Aur: 07 Spi: 10 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 017 HP: 020

Powers:
Damage capacity: 10, Extra Limbs (x4): 05, Growth: 05, Invulnerability: 12, Poison touch: 10, Running: 05, Sharpness (STR): 01, Telepathy: 12

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Growth is NOT Always On
  • Poison Touch has no inherent AV and must rely on the corresponding Accuracy Skill
  • Telepathy only with other Brood
  • Telepathy has a Special +5 Range Bonus with her own Brood
  • Telepathy has a Special +30 Range Bonus with other Brood Queens
  • Telepathy has a Special +65 Range Bonus with the Mother Of Us All

Skills:
Accuracy (Poison touch): 03, Vehicles (Land): 03

Advantages:
Familiarity (Evangelical Christian theology), Local Hero (Friends of the Glory Day Ministry), Life Support (Can go several years without food or water)

Connections:
William Connover (High), Glory Day Ministry (Low), her own Brood (High)

Drawbacks:
Guilt, Secret ID


Design Notes

We barely see Connover in her Queen form, and the stats are based on the assumption that she’s roughly comparable to Harry Palmer. Other parts of the stats are based on what we have seen other Brood Queens do.


By Sébastien Andrivet

Source of Character: Marvel Universe (X-Men books)

Helper(s): Frank Murdock, Darci

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