An issue of 'Mad Science Weekly'
The cover story of this long-running magazine for demented inventors and mad scientists is all about the top up-and-coming mad scientists and how they made it into the big leagues. And pictured on the cover in mid-rant is someone you know very well indeed, Victor von Grun, the man you helped make his break in the world of mad science through a little caper you remember as:
Von Grun's Redemption
When you spoke to Vernon von Grun again, he was in shambles. The constant failures had nearly ruined his self-confidence. You slapped him back into shape, and got him to pull himself together. The first step was to determine what had gone wrong when the growth bombs finally did go off. Why had the Devouring Earth not over-run Paragon City? You returned to Eden to find out, only to discover that some of the Devouring Earth had lost their hostility to the city's heroes! Much to his mounting horror, it seemed that Vernon's plans had ended up helping the people of Paragon City!
But that wasn't all! Devouring Earth had been seen fighting each other, something that had never happened before. Fearing the worst, Vernon sent you to subdue one of these nests of in-fighting Devouring Earth so that he could examine them.
Before Vernon could finish his examination, you learned that an Arachnos base had been over-run by Devouring Earth! Vernon quickly realized that if the attacking creatures showed signs of infection with his own Force of the Earth mutant mutagen it could all lead back to him. You went in to salvage what you could of the situation. When you returned, Vernon had learned that the in-fighting creatures had been infected by his mutagen, and so had the ones you had just faced. Unfortunately, other Arachnos scientists had also discovered Vernon's involvement.
Arbiter Daos called for you, and you suspected the worst. Vernon wasn't through yet, and told you that Crey had captured a Hamidon Organelle and were holding it at their main facility. If you survived the interview with Daos, you were to investigate this in the hope it would reveal what had gone wrong with Vernon's plan. It turned out that you didn't need to worry about Arbiter Daos. He was actually quite glad you were helping Vernon von Grun, and explained that Arachnos felt it needed more mad scientists like von Grun to keep up with other villain groups like the Council. As he prepared to see how well Vernon ranted under pressure, you checked out the Crey base. The Organelle was there, and as you examined it the strange being's mind touched your own. You learned that the Hamidon's control of the Devouring Earth was being usurped by a young heroine called Zenflower, and that her influence was behind the changes in their behavior. This news really got Vernon fired up.
Vernon was close to perfecting a counter-agent to his own work when the Devouring Earth attacked the lab where he worked. You managed to salvage his work, and even save some of his co-workers.
Vernon had realized that the only way to set things right was to break Zenflower's control over the Devouring Earth directly before she could permanently cement it. It would probably allow the Hamidon to take control again, but anything was better than having the Devouring Earth used for the good of all mankind and have it be Vernon's fault. Armed with Vernon's latest effort, a version of his Force of the Earth mutagenic bacteria that could sow confusion in your enemies, you returned to Eden one last time. Despite her haiku-filled banter, you were able to defeat the nature princess and end her control over the Devouring Earth's alien ecology.
When you returned, Vernon had just gotten the letter he'd waited his whole life for. The Mad Scientists of the world had finally offered him his credentials. Lowly lab assistant Vernon von Grun was now a full-fledged Mad Scientist. He thanked you for all your help, and began to work on all the things he'd need to one day RULE the WORLD!
You saw this magazine a little later. Vernon's already considered one of the rising mad scientists in his field. And every time you hear about him wreaking terror on the unsuspecting citizens of the Earth, you can take a moment and think how you knew him back then.