Whateley Universe

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The Whateley Universe is a Web Original prose Shared Universe in a Super-Hero School scenario with elements of the Cthulhu Mythos added into it. It has sometimes been compared to Marvel Comics' X-Men (and was in fact inspired by an X-Men fanfic written by one of Whateley's many authors).

People in their early teens are manifesting mutant powers. They are widely hated and feared, but there is a place that will take them in, shelter them, and teach them how to control their powers: Whateley Academy in Dunwich, New Hampshire. Whateley is large (nearly 600 middle school through high school students in six grades); has support from superheroes, supervillains, and super-neutrals (so it is not being constantly attacked); does not have a high school aged superhero team flying around and fighting crime despite what Team Kimba seems to think; and puts heroes and villains together in everyday situations (just like a real high school). It also hosts demons, magical creatures, monsters, demigods, gods, and Jericho.

In one of many twists, between a sixth to a third of the students have a subconscious image of the form that their body ought to take, known as their Body Image Template (BIT). Mutants with a BIT generally gain either a physical or mental package of powers, frequently both. The physical package includes both beauty and brawn, the mental package includes major intelligence boosts as well as memory, etc. A BIT may change any aspect of a person's body, including their sex. In some cases the transformation may turn them into inhuman whatevers right out of a horror movie.

Most of the main characters are transgender in some way, shape, or form (the stories were originally hosted on a porn-fiction archive for transgender fetishists), so the school placed them all in Poe Cottage, an LGBTI dorm. All the main characters have their own origin story, in which their powers began to manifest, and there is a great deal of grief within their families about their gender change. Of course, there is almost always grief associated with simply being a mutant, but for those involuntarily transformed, the problems are all the greater. Not all transgender characters were involuntarily forced into their present form by their mutation. Some of them changed their own sex using their powers, and some were changed by outside forces.

Whateley Universe is not a pastiche or a direct parody, although it is often written in a tongue in cheek manner, putting superhero themes on common things. For example, Whateley Academy has the high school cliques any normal high school would have, the elitist Alphas, the Fashion Police, and the grungy losers (the Rat Patrol). However, they also have other cliques that only a Super-Hero School would have, such as the Masterminds, the Ninjas, the Robo-Jox, and of course, the Cape Squad (the 'Future Superheroes of America', who are very enthusiastic about being future superheroes).

Here is a link to the stories. (Update: Posting of new stories on the website is problematic, so most new stories are being posted in the Forum under the Author's Corner.) The front page also contains links to the forums and a fan-maintained Wiki. Be forewarned: the Whateley Universe now encompasses something like 14 Canon authors, 20 fanfic authors also hosted on the site, and something close to 150 novels, novelettes, and short stories (NOT counting all the fanfic). It is also somewhat NSFW, with fanart including semi-nudity on the stories page, as well as rather frank discussions of sexuality in several of the stories.

The original six characters, Team Kimba, are:

  • Chaka (Toni Chandler), Genki Girl martial artist who controls Ki.
  • Fey (Nikki Reilly), elven Wizard of unusual power, possessed by an ancient elvish queen. Subconsciously makes people attracted to her.
  • Tennyo (Billie Wilson), flying blasting slicing regenerating Warper extraordinaire; looks rather like Ryoko from Tenchi Muyo! (intentionally, as a result of how she gained her superpowers)
  • Generator (Jade Sinclair), who 'generates' Jinn, psychokinetic copies of herself by animating inanimate objects for a limited time. When the effect wears off, Jinn's memories merge with Jade's. Note: The singular/plural confusion is canon.
  • Phase (Ayla Goodkind), a density-changer who can become intangible or super-dense. Comes from a very rich family, but unfortunately that family is the Whateley Universe version of Fred Phelps's clan, and reacted very poorly to his mutation.
  • Lancer (Hank Declan), a classic super-strong invulnerable Flying Brick hero type. Military Brat. The only Team Kimba character that's gender bending the other way, and also the only Team Kimba character without his own series of stories.

Other main characters with canon authors include:

  • Carmilla (Sara Waite), your average everyday mostly-demon tentacle-wielding shape-changing Psi who eats by absorbing the lifeforce from living things. Named after Le Fanu's famous lesbian vampire. For a time after first arriving a member of Team Kimba, now has her own team, Sara's Pack.
  • Bladedancer (Chou Lee), Handmaid of the Tao, superb martial artist, and wielder of the legendary sword Destiny's Wave. Not an original character, but still a member of Team Kimba, although currently in the process of drawing together an additional combat team.
  • Wallflower (Lily Turner), think Violet of The Incredibles, right down to the super hero parents.
  • Chad/Chaddy/Merry/Mai (okay, this is too complicated to give a single name), a cyberpath and electricity-wielding Energizer. Currently cloned into two people (Petra and Paige), one of whom is in Sara's Pack. (The other isn't at school at present).
  • Heyoka (Jamie Carson), a Lakota Indian with the ability to contact spirits and use their powers.
  • Samantha Everheart, Whateley Security officer, who happens to be merged with a hive-like system of nanites...
  • Jobe Wilkins, an (occasionally) Affably Evil Mad Scientist who ran afoul of one of his own creations, and is shown to be, alternately, a villain and a well meaning yet arrogant bastard with Literal Genie tendencies who simply can't understand why everyone hates him after he tries to help them.
  • Outcast Corner, which includes four characters: Razorback, a dinosaur-like raptor; Diamondback, a Lamia; Jericho, a kid who is deliberately the world's worst fashion disaster and Eldritch, a meld of a human and an ancient super mage-smith.
  • The Lit Chix, a group of girls who write (bad) science fiction and get involved in their own detective messes. Notable members include Loophole, a Gadgeteer Genius with a 100% success rate and Murphy, a probability warper who is most likely insane.
  • The Three Little Witches, a group of junior high girls who go around trying to steal enough essence to do Cool Stuff.
  • Greasy, a Deviser who constantly excretes a substance similar to motor oil. Formerly one half of the Whateley Peeping Toms Club and punching bag of the one person he may love.
  • Kerry Ellison (aka Seraphim aka "The Angel of Hell's Kitchen") who is an empath and mystic focus with access to the highest reaches of mystical power, making her a much sought after "commodity" in the eyes of a great many of the powers both inside of and outside of Whateley.
  • Anna Parsons, aka Aquerna, one of the kids who didn't win the Superpower Lottery. She is a fairly low-powered avatar who gets her powers from the literal spirit of the squirrel[1] and started out as something of a campus joke because of it, but is proving actually pretty competent with what powers she does have as she gets more story time.

Tropes used in Whateley Universe include:
  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: Several. Some magical, others created by Devisers or Gadgeteers.
  • Academy of Adventure
  • Action Girl: Yeah. There's a lot of these.
  • Action Mom: Several of the students at Whateley are the children of superheroines/villains, such as Tennyo's mother.
    • Becoming an "Action Mom" is Jade's express goal in life, though she is willing to become an action babysitter or action nanny first.
  • A Day in the Limelight
  • Adults Are Useless: Both averted and played straight. Many adults in the Whateleyverse are in fact quite competent when shown, at least within their areas of expertise; yet since the focus is generally on the (mis)adventures of mutant teenagers, it's just as common to see some adult or other left holding the Idiot Ball. (This is occasionally justified; at least one story has a house mother being literally unable to see the very real problems between two roommates due to magical manipulation and thus refusing to reassign them.)
  • Agent Mulder
  • Agent Scully
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot
  • Aint No Rule: As Jobe Wilkins, whose codename is also Jobe Wilkins, demonstrates, there ain't no rule saying you can't register your real name as your codename. Of course, it may help that keeping any sort of secret identity would be next to impossible in his case.
    • Not that he needs to. His dad is a major supervillain and emperor of his own nation.
  • Alien Blood: Including examples that make the in-story scientists' heads hurt, like blood that has antimatter elements in it...but only sometimes.
  • All Men Are Perverts: Crops up now and again, named characters are a lot more likely to be an exception than any given crowd. Lancer and Phase definitely are though.
  • All There in the Manual: Three manuals:
    • The "Whateley Academy Universe Bible" to which only canon authors have access.
    • The Whateley Forums, where the canon authors answer backstory questions.
    • The Whateley Wiki.
  • All Witches Have Cats: Elyzia Grimes is a powerful witch and a member of Whateley Academy's Magical Arts Department. She even looks like a witch, since she's described as looking uncomfortably like what Morticia Addams would look like in real life. Her familiar is a solid black cat named Merlin.
  • Alpha Bitch: Two full cliques of them, actually. The Alphas (gender neutral, Exemplar focused) and the Martial Arts Cheerleaders. A male version is in the goth squad, who worship Great Old Ones. In particular, Tansy Walcutt, an Alpha, stands out; she tormented Ayla (then known as Trevor) at their old school, and carries on at Whateley after they both mutate.
  • Angry Black Man: Chaka's brother Vince. The rest of the family doesn't like this.
  • Animal Stereotypes: Characters who have either changed into animal-like forms or are avatars of certain animals usually adopt traits and habits of said animal. Heyoka has to deal with several different avatars, causing her to seem nearly neurotic when he adopts their powers.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Some are a lot worse than merely annoying.
    • Chaka's little brother Matt, in particular, although Cindy and Vince see her as the annoying one.
    • Completely averted by Paige's sister, Jo. She decides not to room with her, not because she was afraid of being turned into a were, but because she didn't want her sister to blame herself for it.
  • Anonymous Ringer: Averted: Real life people are always brought up, including George W. Bush, who is President at the point in time that the stories take place.
  • Applied Phlebotinum, Hand Wave, A Wizard Did It: Hat trick!
  • Apron Matron: Each of the dorm cottages at Whateley has an adult supervisor, usually a matronly woman who is more than she seems.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism, Unsurprisingly scientists have started to study mutants, and now have working hypotheses for many different powers. For some reason we're yet to see any scientific view on magic, and several top scientists (including the Mr Fantastic Expy) insist that magic is just a mixture of psychic powers and self delusion, something even a simple experiment should prove otherwise. No explanation is given for why scientists are letting prejudice overcome scientific integrity.
    • On the other hand, some of the ancient mystical beings have implied that psychic powers are just same thing as magic, but used by somebody who doesn't truly understand what they're doing.
    • IIRC, there are exactly two people who hold this view. One is in a flashback to the 60s, when nobody knew how anything related to mutants works. The other has been operating since childhood on the assumption that everything has a rational explanation (which magic most certainly does not), and spent most of that time fighting Mephisto, a supervillain who has based their entire career on using mundane processes and high intelligence to imitate magic, mutant powers, aliens, etc.
  • Arson, Murder, and Lifesaving
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:

Jobe: [...] There's no way genetic engineering can stave off the scourges that are ignorance, poverty, bigotry or line dancing.

  • Artificial Limbs: When Jobe has been beaten and doesn't want to bring the authorities down onto the bully who did it, he claims that it's nothing and that he'd been more injured in a thumbwar, neglecting to mention that it was a thumbwar with his father, whose arm is cybernetic.
    • Jobe, missing Mister Happy, creates an organic prosthetic. Jobe's father, missing his own Mister Happy, built a smart, detachable prosthetic that doubles as a dildo. This reportedly saved the world once. "Do you know how hard it is to declare nuclear war when your wife is doing that to you?"
  • Ascended Extra
  • The Atoner: Erik Mahren, Elyzia Grimes is said to be this but its not come up much.
    • Also: the Green Witch, Mr. Garrity, and Mr. Donner
  • Attractive Bent Gender: Pretty much standard for the genderbenders, except for those that also get physical mutations thrown in (and even then, it's not unlikely that they won't be attractive in some fashion).
  • Author Appeal: Loads and loads.
  • Author Avatar: Subverted. The ones that most resemble the Canon Cabal are the Lit Chix, who are rather dysfunctional.
  • Author Existence Failure: Bob Arnold, who hosted the website as well as being a valued member of the community, passed away in July 2011. His family shut off the servers after his passing, but his brother-in-law turned them back on after being contacted by the various communities he hosted. The character of Jennifer Stevens was "imported" from Arnold's series "Zapped!" and placed in Whateley as a former drama teacher as memorandum.
  • Backstory
  • Badass Normal:
    • Several members of Whateley Security would qualify.
      • Chief Delarose, definitely. A supervillain that was feared worldwide knew him by name.
    • As a non-mutant, Chou Lee is listed by Whateley, and even registered by the DPA (see below), as a "baseline". The school has deliberately used this to teach at least one of its nastier pupils a painful lesson in What Measure Is a Non Super. However, she is a superbly-skilled martial artist who wields a magical sword and several other mystical artefacts, that really boost her well beyond normal human abilities.
    • Sensei Ito, Whateley's Martial Arts instructor, is a little old man with no powers. He routinely kicks his students' asses all over the dojo, many of whom could charitably be descibed as 'insanely overpowered'.
      • He is a little old man though. One imagines he is typically grinning...
      • Also, he routinely kicks one particular kind of insanely overpowered student around the dojo..... TK Bricks, who are immensely strong and invulnerable, have well-categorized weaknesses, and have spent most of their time since mutating in a "world of cardboard" scenario and are therefore instinctively holding back for fear of smashing anything they touch. Were Sensei Ito to try this stunt with a blaster, speedster, or any other of the more exotic powersets, he would likely end up wearing his own butt for a hat.
      • Well, we have only seen him demonstrate against an ultra-strong TK brick and a powerful avatar with the spirit of the eagle but no fighting skills.
    • Erik Mahren, before he manifested, deserves special mention.
      • As well as the rest of the Dragon Slayers, who not only beat up Boston's Green Lantern expy with either no superpowers or mutations that might as well be useless, but are seen as the boogeymen of the mutant community.
  • Bad Boss
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: Averted, most powers have little effect on one's moral alignment. Most of the Devisors who actually suffer from Diedrick's Syndrome (which makes you cackle, monologue and generally act like a Mad Scientist) are usually really nice guys. The ones who don't suffer from it are more of a mixed bag, really.
    • In fact, all the characters are pretty realistically ambiguous. Jobe, supposedly an evil bio-warfare wizard, is usually only retaliating against TK Brick bullies who thought they could pick on a "defenceless" egghead, since he doesn't have any giant robot bodyguards or giant laser pistols like the more "techno" devisers.
      • Jobe is a bad example mostly because he doesn't have a 'bad' power in the first place. He's simply a mad genetic engineer -- a power that's in and of itself morally pretty neutral, it's just that Jobe happens to be a jerk.
  • Bag of Holding: these (or technological/magical methods for accomplishing the same effect) are becoming something of a staple of the setting. More than two thirds of Team Kimba have access to something like it: Chou has two, one specifically an invisible scabbard for Destiny's wave, the other a literal Bag of Holding, both given to her by the Taoist Immortals. Ayla has his Mobius-produced utility belt. Fey accomplishes similar effects using magic to store her armour and sword. Shroud has her locker, stored inside her body, where her costumes and things are kept. Jade was given a purse of holding by Thuban for Christmas. The only Kimbas currently lacking are Hank (who manages something similar by using paper swords he can store in his pockets), Tennyo (wo REALLY doesn't need anything) and Chaka. Other notables include Malachai, Loophole, Jericho and the Anti-Paladin, all of whom use gesture- or thought-controlled teleportation devices to pull their gear from nowhere; Thuban himself, who uses his size-warping powers to make bags, pockets, rooms, cars etc into TARDIS-like structures that are bigger on the inside (this is a big secret power of his); and the Spy Kidz Secret Squirrels Espionage Cadet Corps, whose size-warper is able to shrink things down to fit into regular pockets, hence his code-name, Holdout.
  • Batman Gambit: Ayla successfully pulls one off, putting the Masterminds in his pocket.
  • The Beautiful Elite: A lot of mutants, due to being exemplars.
  • Because Destiny Says So: The Tao knows where you live. And what books your daddy has in his library halfway around the world.
  • Benevolent Boss: Phase/Ayla. Also, Jadis Diabolik gets into a rant about this during her and the Bad Seed's Christmas story, and how this management style made her father into one of the best supervillains around.
  • Beware the Honest Ones
  • Beware the Nice Ones: All of the main characters really, but:
    • Jade Sinclair will nail you to the wall. Literally. With railroad spikes. Even if you're twice her size. Then she'll burn a message into your flesh.
    • Nikki Reilly will melt your face.
    • Billie Wilson will slice you in two with a lightsaber, blow you up with antimatter, or beat you to death with her bare hands. Or spit on you.
    • Chou Lee will simply kill you. Sorry, nothing personal, but the balance must be maintained.
    • Ayla Goodkind is Lawful Neutral. But he is nice enough...until you threaten someone he cares about. Then he will financially ruin you, your family, and your dog. Unless you apologise, strike a deal, and join Ayla's empire.
    • Sara Waite will eat your soul.
    • Toni Chandler will throw playing cards into your legs. Ordinary playing cards.
  • Big Eater: many mutants, especially energizers, TK supermen, and some shapeshifters, require massive quantities of food to provide the energy to use their powers.
  • Big No
  • Bilingual Bonus: Especially in 'The Big Idea'. This includes a DISCLAIMER in French!
  • Black Cloak
  • Black Magic: Kallysta Thessellarean (Hekate) practices the darkest of black arts.
  • Black Shirt
  • Blood Knight: Several, but the king of this has to be Counterpoint, aka Ares.
  • Bloody Murder: Some of the characters' blood have unusual qualities, such as Tennyo's, which has Antimatter in it. Sometimes.
  • Boarding School
  • Body Horror: In A Single Fold, a number of students are infected with a bio-virus, and Jobe is implicated (though he was innocent). At the same time, the protagonist, Folder, is involuntarily placed under a spell that changes his gender. Jobe, outraged at the perp for doing so while completely disregarding Folder's own opinions on the subject and agreement to be so changed, proceeds to, in no uncertain terms, fuck his body up, like so:

The right arm was lengthened to where it might drag behind the boy on the ground, if he could walk. The left arm was twisted and bent in so many angles that it seemed to be a knotted mess ‘just’ hanging from the shoulder. One collarbone jutted upwards while the other stuck out from the front of an oddly reformed chest. The legs and hips seemed to be similarly effected, though the toes on one foot were very nearly a foot long. Diaz’s mouth was disturbing in that the lower jaw appeared to have been pulled out half a foot, pinched and pulled downward and then twisted thirty or so degrees to the right.

  • Boring Invincible Hero: Team Kimba have never lost as a group. Take that as you will.
    • Tennyo can look like this to those who don't know her better, but Chaka may be a better example. Tennyo is a walking Person of Mass Destruction and Made of Iron, but has serious psychological issues and has in fact 'lost' or come dangerously close to it a number of times; meanwhile, Chaka's do-anything ki mastery has so far basically let her merrily skip through life beating any challenges she encounters while making it look easy.
      • Except Chaka got the crap beaten out of her in her latest story, after skating by for three or four months of Whateley time.
      • Her reaction to getting the crap knocked out of her was "That was fun, let's do that again sometime!". Still, she's gotten beaten again recently, so at the least, she's no longer 'invincible'. And it's established she's realized she can't skate through and does have to work.
    • The unique personalities, however, may allow them to move to the level of Showy Invincible Hero, and they STILL have issues with personality. Individual members can, and will, be defeated big-time. Interestingly enough, they ARE getting this reputation around the school.
    • And now they've gotten their asses kicked in a simulation against baselines, created specifically by their instructors to make sure they aren't getting too confident in their abilities. 4 died in-sim, not including 2 others who would have bought it without their Healing Factor
    • Ayla's stories tend to focus a lot on aspects outside of combat, such as social networking and building up from scratch the economic empire that Ayla would have inherited if he had not been a mutant. But when it does come to combat, Ayla is so used to the level of his invincible teammates, and the equally powerful opponents he fights, that he is repeatedly shocked to realise how many people consider him a Boring Invincible Hero. That is, if they consider him a hero...
  • Breakfast Club: Apart from Team Kimba, there's also the Outcast Corner, a group of inhuman looking ragers and a blind guy.
  • Brick Joke: Quite a few, often occurring in Ayla's stories, along with standard Continuity nods.
    • One fun one from Bek D. Corbin's The Big Idea has the Alphas, in the first ten pages, decide to prank a character by painting his room pink and more when he returns to it. Halfway through, he's about to return, and suddenly switches with a villain, as he has a terrible roommate and can't return to his room. Said villain is shown wondering why the room is pink.
    • Example of Diane Castle's Brick Jokes? In Maggie Finson/Babs Yernukle's Christmas Elves, Jade receives a purse, big enough to put a floor lamp in. A few months later, in Ayla And The Great Shoulder Angel conspiracy, Jade is asked to empty out her purse. Sure enough, she pulls out the floor lamp.
  • Broken Aesop: Sara has a speech on how she doesn't understand why humans are so possessive of the people they love and uses branding as a metaphor, no one points out that she has literally branded people she loves with a demon mark; demon marks are irreversible marks of ownership, if you have one the demon owns your soul and can control you almost utterly any time they want.
  • Brother Chuck: Whatever happened to Feral? Also an example of Real Life Writes the Plot.
    • She's still there both as a member of Judicator's faction within the New Olympians and as a member of Sara's Pride. Except now she's almost entirely in the background since the author never had the chance to develop her.
    • Definitely fits this trope now that the New Olympians, and Judicator, are in major focus. Feral is just not mentioned, even as 'oh, she's over there'.
  • Butt Monkey: Greasy. In fact, he actually shifts to The Woobie, at times.
  • Bungling Inventor: Devisers and Gadgeteers. They're students after all, and sometimes things go "bang".
  • Calling Your Attacks: The Yama Dojo ninjas. Fey and the Necromancer have also done this when battling each other.
  • Cape Busters: The Dragonslayers (who are retired) and the Knights of Purity.
  • Captain Ersatz: Hello, Ryoko Tennyo. It's very much acknowledged in the stories, and at least one clique considers her to obviously be the real deal, which may cause problems later.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Quite literally in some cases.
  • Casanova
  • Cast Herd: Most characters are part of a team, making it somewhat easier to sort out which character is which. The herds do have a habit of intermingling, though.
  • Catgirl: Feral, Miyet, and Paige for starters...
  • Character Development: With hundreds of stories or chapters written in the series, Character Development is pretty much a given. While some, such as Chaka, don't deviate very far from their original personalities, other characters can be seen growing and changing in various ways.
  • Character Focus: There's around a dozen canon authors, all of whom write about different characters.
  • Chekhov's Gunman
  • The Chew Toy: Merry. When she's split into Paige and Petra, Paige (as far as the readers know, because she only appears as a minor character since then) gets a reprieve. Petra, unfortunately, picks up Paige's slack.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Ayla, definitely.
  • The Chosen One:
    • Chou Lee certainly qualifies, and is not happy with what the Tao requires.
    • Nikki Reilly too, but she's OK with her destiny.
  • Church Militant: The Catholic Church, in the Whateley Universe, not only has the Inquisition (who has mellowed out somewhat since the Dark Ages), but another group called the Knights of the Church. The Knights are a bit of an odd duck, though: they, on occasion, include non Catholics and Pagans into their group, and their newest member is very close to a lust goddess. Oh, and she gets the fun position of official messenger to the Knights from Satan.
  • Clean Cut
  • Code Name: Every mutant (and thus, every pupil) is required to have one.
    • Jobe Wilkins takes advantage of the fact that no rules say your codename can't simply be your actual name, and Jimmy T only made a token effort.
  • Combat Commentator: During the Combat Finals, Peeper and Greasy fulfill this, adding unnecessarily lustful and degrading comments about female participants (almost completely Peeper). At one point, Jericho and Razorback forcefully take over this position.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Sensei Ito. He encourages this in all of his students.
  • Combat Tentacles: Sara Waite
  • Combo-Platter Powers: Common, but there's a few characters that stand out, such as Tennyo, Jimmy T, and Merry/Paige/Petra.
    • Power mimics like Counterpoint can create their own combo platters. Mimeo combines the powers of Phase, Tennyo, Lancer, and Fey in Birthday Brawl.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Much of the humor in Jobe's viewpoint stories comes from his total failure to understand why most of the people he "helps" hate him so much.
  • Compassionate Critic
  • Compulsory School Age: Carmilla and Eldritch. Samantha, despite her apparant age, doesn't become a student. Vamp.
    • In Carmilla's defence, she isn't doing any of the normal high school classes. Just the ones that relate to her mutant power. Same applies to Eldritch.
    • Samantha's new body is 18 so it's not a subversion.
      • She doesn't attend the school, she works at the school. Though, she is the most junior of the security team...
  • Comic Book Time: Averted, surprisingly. However, it is subtly referenced and mocked with Headmistress Carson, who looked like a teenager well into her thirties, and is currently around eighty and looks to be in her late thirties. Carson has remarked at least once that this was not a pleasent experience for her.
  • Comic Trio
  • Conveniently-Common Kink: Transgenderism, specifically male-to-female transgenderism, with bisexuality a close second.
  • Cool Loser
  • Cool Old Guy: Ito-sensei and Gunny Bardue. Headmistress Carson is of the female variety, despite looking middle aged.
  • Cosmic Horror Story: Part of the mishmash setting, complete with Eldritch Abominations and Tomes of Eldritch Lore; Carmilla is descended from at least one, if not two of these. Seems to run on Derleth's good vs evil interpretation of Lovecraft's material as opposed to Lovecraft's more chaotic and amoral world. But we don't know for sure yet, and Word of God hasn't clarified it. The school has a special classification for Cosmic Horror students, "Class X Entities".
  • Crossover Cosmology: Side-effect of All Myths Are True (or possibly an alternate interpretation of the world; the pages are vague)
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Jade's solution to the fact that the obviously powerful are the first to get targeted. In addition the entire Team Kimba team has a talisman that makes eavesdroppers think they are acting like 15 year old high school girls when they're talking combat strategy.
    • A LOT of characters work out this way. Take Jobe, for instance. He's not a moron in the intelligence sense of the word, but he's an utterly unsympathetic character from the outside, and not a lot better from the inside. On the face of things, he looks like a typically squishy, physically clueless nerd. Until he reveals he's been trained in martial arts since his early days, and has damn good strategic intelligence on top of it, enough to thoroughly play a team of trainee covert ops kids in the Bad Seeds christmas story.
  • Curb Stomp Battle: Team Kimba hands out one in "The Turks or the Geek".
  • Cute Bruiser
  • Cute Little Fangs: Carmilla, Paige, Tennyo
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: All of the "old school" supervillains seem to fall somewhere between this and Contractual Genre Blindness. Back when supervillains were only just hitting the scene, most of them were con men with fake powers who were there to keep superheroes occupied while the mob committed more mundane crimes without interference. They were also far more pragmatic than modern villains when the situation called for it.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Carmilla & the Pack. Gothmog. The Dragonslayers. The Bad Seeds (some of the time). El Penitente. Thuban and Faction Three (maybe). See also Light Is Not Good below.
  • Day in the Life
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Depending on the Writer: Being a multi-writer verse, it's inevitable.
  • Depleted Phlebotinum Shells
  • Deus Exit Machina: Fubar got this treatment at Halloween.
  • Did Not Do the Research: In several stories people use "she-male" as though it were a technical term for a person with a woman's secondary sexual characteristics and male genitalia. The term is actually an insult to trans-people that is most popular in the 9-12 year-old crowd.
    • Not in transgender-fetishism parlance, it isn't.
    • At one point, Phase refers to the NOFX songs "We March to the Beat of Indifferent Drum" and "Wolves in Wolves' Clothing" as "old NOFX songs" despite the fact that both songs were released five months before the story takes place.
    • Hippolyta comes from Afghanistan and was subjected to female genital mutilation, but female genital mutilation is not practiced in Afghanistan.
    • In one of the stories radioactive isotopes are used so detailed scans of a body may be done. The character in question is informed that the isotopes are safe because quote: "(N)one of the isotopes they use here have a half-life of even five minutes." Isotopes with a shorter half life are by far MORE dangerous than isotopes with longer half-lives.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: But the headmistress points out that having been seen to near-single-handedly defeat The Dragon/Big Bad and his Mooks is not a good thing - because now it means that all the other villains are going to consider them serious threats.
    • But those guys weren't Cthulhu level. Now the demon in Ayla and the Grinch might qualify, but Ayla lost that fight[2].
  • Did You Just Romance Cthulhu?: Anybody who's received the attentions of Sara Waite.
  • Different for Girls
  • Dirt Forcefield: Part of some people's powers. It's why Pristine has her particular codename.
  • Discard and Draw: Potentially a result of burnout, as well as increasing or decreasing powers, however it is never considered a good thing as it can cause deformation and death.
    • Maybe, but we have yet to see that happen.
      • Fireball, after her "fight" with Phase. The result turns her from a hot fire user into an insane demon-thing.
  • Dogged Nice Guy
  • Double Reverse Quadruple Agent: Aries is now working as a spy on The Don for both Phase and Kodiak while pretending to be a spy on Kodiak for The Don. If that wasn't enough, he has also come clean to Chief Delarose, the results of that are yet to be seem.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: Gunny Bardue and especially Erik Mahren, to the point that most students and security personnel knew him as "that asshole".
  • Eat the Dog: Sara. Almost always in the main lunch hall at mealtime where it can be seen, as well.
  • Eccentric Townsfolk: The nearby town is named after a town from a H.P. Lovecraft story and has a high school for mutants, heroes, and Cosmic Horrors. One doesn't ask too many questions.
  • Elaborate University High
  • Elemental Baggage: Played straight by stronger mutants, but averted by weaker ones.
  • Elemental Powers
  • Embarrassing Middle Name: Chaka
  • Emotion Eater: Sara and El Penitente.
  • Enemy Mine: In the last chapter of Birthday Brawl, Tennyo and a group of supervillains team up to dig out of Rox C after the Necromancer trapped them there.
  • Energy Absorption
  • Entry Pimp: Infamously, one fan added hundreds of web links throughout TV Tropes to Whateley without creating the actual Whateley Universe entry, requiring lots of cleanup and creating a lot of ill will.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: It's mentioned very explicitly that one of the few things you can do to get everyone with powers of some sort trying to kill you is to blackmail, threaten, or attack one of the student's families. Even supervillains have families and kids, after all -- some of which are at Whateley. Specifically, it's said that the last group who tried to threaten a student's family was made the senior project of that year - and that, of the members of the group still living, every last damn one of them is on life support...and profusely grateful to be in jail.
    • Some of Reverend Goodhope's 'thugs' are dumb enough to do this, and they're dealt with. Very quickly. Very brutally.
    • As of the very end of part 4 of 'Five Elements Dancing', an evil cult that has it in for the Handmaid of the Tao is trying to blackmail Bladedancer into handing Destiny's Wave over to them by threatening the families of her friends at school. Time will tell how well that works out...
      • Time has told... it did not end well for the aforementioned.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Jobe Wilkins is a sick fuck, but he utterly despises people who disregard the free will of others.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Variation; Even the Gays Want Her
    • How bad is this? Even THE FOUR ELEMENTS WANT HER!
  • Everybody Was Kung-Fu Fighting: It's on the bloody curriculum.
    • Technically its optional, but this troper estimates 50% of the students do take Martial arts classes.
    • However, the Combat Finals are not optional. By school tradition they're just not mentioned until the end of first semester. If you didn't take a PE class, that's too bad.
  • Extranormal Institute
  • Insanity And Turning Into An Eldritch Abomination Is The Only Option: Do not screw with the BIT. It will not end well-for example, there was a man with a BIT that made him look like a crocodile. He had it changed to make him look like a handsome, completely normal man. Unfortunately, it gave him the mind of a crocodile and he went on a cannibalistic rampage. Which irritates Phase-physically female except for his/her genitals-to no end. It almost makes you wonder if a higher being is screwing with his/her life because they think it's funny.
  • Fainting Seer: Half-demons are not good for the health of precogs.
  • Fantastic Catholicism
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Sidhe, werebeasts, Lovecraftian horrors, they're all there. Along with avatars of ancient gods (or delusional mutants).
    • Not delusional. Both Circe (THE Circe) and the Tao through Bladedancer acknowledge the fact that they are the ancient Greek gods stuffed into human bodies. Circe even calls one of them by name and says that it's good to see him again.
  • Fetish Fuel Station Attendant: ...Sara, a half (or 3/4, depending on your math) demon. Her father was a demon of lust. She has tentacles, shapeshifting abilities, a will to use them, and she's OmniSexual. At one point, to taunt someone she sticks out her tongue, which grows to three feet long, and sprouts tendril-like fingers.
  • First Law of Gender Bending: A fundamental law within Whateley. Anyone who changes gender due to being an Exemplar cannot change back. Some shapeshifters and Reach (who flips between genders) are the exceptions.
    • The current (possibly wrong) in universe theory as to why there are so many Gender Benders is that the spirit of evolution has decided to force mutants to out-breed humanity, and is helping that along by just making more female mutants -- one way or another. Of course, independent research would be impossible to obtain in order to test this theory...
  • First-Person Smartass: Phase.
  • Five-Man Band: Chaka is The Hero, Fey is The Lancer, Phase is The Smart Guy, Lancer and Tennyo are The Big Guys, and Generator is The Chick.
  • Flat Earth Atheist: Quite a few of the top scientists believe that magic is just psychic effects.
  • Food Porn: In Ayla's stories.
  • For Halloween I Am Going as Myself: Subverted, Iron Star was actually going as Captain America, but using his powers wrecked the costume.
    • Played straight too, since Tennyo went as Ryoko, and the rest of the team went as other Tenchi Muyo! characters.
    • It's generally considered bad form to go to the Halloween party as "my super future self".
  • Functional Magic
  • Funetik Aksent: Some authors more than others.
  • Future Me Scares Me: In "It's All in the Timing", Toni and Nikki meet their evil alternate future selves.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: A considerable part of the student body. Come in two main flavours:
    • Gadgeteers: Their power is a form of ESP that tells them exactly what tool, material, design etc. to use to build a machine, but their creations obey the normal laws of science. Once created, a gadgeteer's design can be patented, built in a factory by normal workers, and used by anyone.
    • Devisers: The real mad scientists. Their power allows them to impose their own personal reality, creating machines, drugs etc. that defy the laws of science. A deviser's creation is known as a "devise" (note the spelling). Devises can only be built by devisers, and often only work reliably for them, or at least in their presence.
    • Some rare individuals manifest both traits simultaneously, such as secondary character, and love-interest, Bunny "Bugs" Cormick. She cannot be certain whether she's breaking reality or not, until somebody else tries to build one of her inventions.
  • Gender Bender: Oh god. It'd be easier to mention the main characters that aren't gender-swapped in some way.
    • Jericho, Anna, and Jadis are the only major viewpoint characters not in this situation. Most of the support characters aren't either, of course.
  • Genre Savvy: Ayla and Jadis both have this, along with a good few people. Others pretty much go through the index. When a smile can be explained as a 'Xanatos Gambit' you know you've got this.
  • Girl Posse: What, you were expecting something set in high school without at least one of these?
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: The Yama Dojo ninjas definitely count as this. The Vindicators might come close, and a few others follow the general idea.
  • Good Bad Girl: Several, but Sara stands out.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Most of the "good" characters are quite prepared to bully, threaten and intimidate anyone they regard (usually with good reason) as their enemy.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal
    • Subversion, in that it's mentioned that the evidence for Tennyo actually having been in danger during the Training from Hell that she got put through by accident, would be more compelling if she didn't heal so fast.
    • Also subverted in that healing factors come with a host of problems, such as making certain kinds of surgery much more difficult, resistance to medicines (including anasthetics, see surgery), and making cancer more deadly, rather than less.
    • Petra finds out the hard way what happens when a regenerator does too many full body regenerations in a small time frame: brittle bones and a hell of a lot of physical therapy.
    • Recently played straight, with the fallout from the Alphas hiring a couple of geeks to take out the safeties in the sims.
    • In the combat final with Lancer and Hippolyta versus Eldritch, Hippolyta makes the mistake of pushing the uncooperative Eldritch too hard. She gets her neck snapped for her trouble.
  • Government Conspiracy: The Mutant Control Commission Office (MCO) is nominally a world-wide private organization with mutant-control powers varying from country to country by treaty. Responsible for defining the international Mutant ID (MID) card standard that many countries have adopted. True agenda uncertain...
    • Forget uncertain, they're explicitly kidnapping mutants to experiment on.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: Carson does this with Kodiak in 'The Secret Of Forger's List I'
  • Groin Attack: Carl, Jade, Ayla, and Jobe, as well as others, are subjected to this at one point or another. Carl's is seen as funny, because he can regenerate anyways, and he really deserved it, Jade's incident is treated humorously (and was self inflicted during practice), Ayla's (caused by Jade and Fey as a prank) not so much, and Jobe's... REALLY not funny.
  • Half-Human Hybrid
  • Hard Light: Part of the Handwaving for the combat simulations; also a power available to some mutants.
  • Have You Seen My God?: The Olympian gods have come to Whateley... but they can't find Poseidon, Dionysus, and Hestia. Phase points out that it's possible they don't want to be found... and we don't even know if they're at Whateley.
  • Have You Tried Not Being a Monster?: On so many levels.
  • Hello, Nurse!: As a result of Most Common Superpower -- some of the main characters are considered really attractive.
  • Hermaphrodite: Several of the transgender characters change more slowly than others, retaining both sexual organs for a while (Lancer and Zenith, for instance). Paige and Petra are both completely and permamently hermaphrodites. Ayla isn't quite one: his body's female in form, including breasts, but his genitalia is male, and so is his mind. This leads to the majority of people thinking that he's female, which tends to annoy him quite a lot.
    • A more scientifically accurate example: It is revealed that prior to her initial transformation, Tennyo was actually intersexed and had a sealed off uterus and ovaries that, due to insurance issues, had secretly been removed during an appendectomy without her or her family's knowledge. This was what allowed the formerly male Bill to transform into a form with a female template without ever knowing that he was in any way other than male.
    • Wallflower was born this, but her parents decided to have a daughter--causing her to worry she'll follow her mom's footsteps (in the other direction).
  • Heroes Unlimited: Team Kimba is only one team of 6 (give or take a few) students in a school of hundreds of superpowered people, many of which have become reoccurring characters or even had their own day in the limelight.
  • Heroic Sociopath: Certainly Jobe Wilkins (when he's not coming across as a Literal Genie) and arguably quite a few others.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Father John gets sucked into the dark side of church politics during Kerry's intro story. If this seems like a weak example, well, it's not. He ends up becoming an accomplice to keeping her parents from finding her, drugging her into docility, misusing her talents, and causing her grave injury. He really was a nice guy just trying to protect her to begin with, too.
    • Aries started out as a bully hunter but got mind raped into being one of Freya's hit men. By the time he realised that he'd been screwed over, he was too deep to get out.
  • Hollywood Evolution: Frankly, seems to be lifted verbatim from X-Men.
  • Horny Scientist: Jobe Wilkins is working on a project to create his very own Drow wife. Recent stories reveal that he has succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. However, in a cruel or poetic twist of fate, depending on your opinion of Jobe, he has become his Drow wife. And, she is the semi-official mother of her own clone.
  • Hot Chick with a Sword: Chou Lee.
  • Humiliation Conga: Quite a few, with Overclock and Make's comeuppance standing out in particular.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Commercially available from talented Devisers with the usual caveats on purchasing devices that break the laws of physics. Plus several kinds of warpers can do this for themselves and/or others. Thuban and Holdout come to mind.
  • Idiot Ball: Several, some deliberate and in character. The worst would have to be Amanda Chulkris, supposedly a computent magician and teacher but asks a barely trained clairvoyant to demonstrate by reading Sara's palm. Scrying a great old one isn't a good idea and the clairvoyant loses ownership of her soul. So far no one has called Amanda out on this.
    • At that point, they didn't really know that Sara herself was a GOO. They knew that her FATHER was, but they didn't know SHE was.
    • It doesn't matter if they didn't know for sure, her father was a GOO, just having the distinct possibility should have been enough to put a stop to the clairvoyant testing... but it wasn't...
    • And in 5 Elements Dancing, Chou just handed Clover, an odds mangler with a perchant for trouble, a ball of essence (pure magical power). The authors have shown repeatedly that giving anyone in Clover's group essence generally results in bad things happening, of the unbelievably unlucky kind.
  • If It's You It's Okay: Molly. Before meeting Chou, had no interest in other girls and has no interest in other girls apart from Chou.
    • Fey also has this problem, even from openly gay men who don't even know her.
  • I Have No Son: Many parents who have mutant children disown them (Aquerna, Aqueous, Phase, Diamondback) but it should be noted that not all parents do so, and GSD cases aren't always disowned (Razorback, Deimos, Phobos, Jericho).
  • I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: Averted at near Author Tract levels. Proper gun handling and safety is given instructional levels of detail, and woe betide any student who messes about with ranged weapons, lethal or otherwise. It seems a couple of the authors are firearm enthusiasts and/or soldiers, and hot on safety.
  • I Know Madden Kombat: The annoying Whateley Academy Martial Arts Cheerleaders.
  • Implausible Fencing Powers: Destiny's Wave can cut anything its wielder wants to be cut.
    • No, it can cut anything that the Tao wants to be cut.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: Chaka at the end of "Ayla and the Networks" and "It's All in the Timing", which earns her a pillow-pummeling and a faceful of snow, respectively.
  • Inside a Computer System: Technopaths do this; see Merry.
  • Instant AI, Just Add Water: A common result of Devisers adding computer components to things. Jade's power lets her fake it.
  • Insufferable Genius: Several, Jobe takes the cake, however.
  • Interspecies Romance: Again, Cosmic Horror does this to people.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifting: Exemplars dance between Involuntary Shapeshifting and Metamorphosis -- Exemplars will end up looking like their idealized version of themselves, called a BIT. Unfortunately, BITs can be the wrong gender, the wrong species, etc etc. It's their own powers doing it to themselves, and they have limited if any control over it. (Typically using other powers causes the effect to accelerate.)
    • Playing the trope more straight are mutants that deal with spirits -- If you're a mutant that deals with the spiritual and not strong enough to completely dominate the spirit, the spirit will make changes to your body to make itself more comfortable. Fey, Miyet, and Heyoka are all examples of this.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: The team keeps getting yelled at for clogging up their comms in the sims with mindless chatter. While Gunny Bardue is right and this could have bad consequences, Phase is also right in that the chatter has helped them keep tabs on each other and quickly realise when someone's gone down.
    • In "Ayla and the Mad Scientist", the Spy Kidz get pissed off at Phase for reducing Kew to tears after Kew stole things from Phase's utility belt. While screaming at Kew probably wasn't the best way to handle the situation, the fact still remains that Kew did steal Phase's weapons, Phase really needed them, and he had every right to be pissed off. Not to mention, those weapons were really freaking expensive.
  • Joker Immunity: In spades, with the most egregious examples coming from Even Murphy's Law Has Loopholes.
  • Karma Houdini: There are a few. Luckily, it appears to be averted eventually with most villains, but some Designated Heroes may qualify.
    • Hekate, meanwhile, is making it a plot point to pull a houdini, having recently acquired something that might get her able to resist Fey's curse.
  • Ki Attacks: Chaka, though she can't do the flashier ones from anime. Yet.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Quite a lot of this. People keep mentioning how odd that there are so many genderbent freshman in this particular class. There's even an entire story written for the purpose. It's called The Braeburn Report, and in it they explain that this increase in female gender-bending mutants is proof the everyone will be a mutant in about 50 years.
  • Lesbian Vampire: Sara is code named after the first one of these to get famous; not technically a vampire, however. (She's also slightly bisexual, not a lesbian.)
  • Le Parkour: Parkour Jam Hooligans is the best story for this, but this being a superhero 'verse, there's a reasonable amount of it elsewhere, too.
  • Ley Line: Nikki can tap them to increase her power.
  • Light Is Not Good: The Alphas, the New Olympians, occasionally the Capes and the Betas, the Martial Arts Cheerleaders, the Knights of Purity, Lamplighter.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: That list up there barely scratches the surface. The Whateley Wiki's "Student" category, for example, includes almost 550 articles. The current estimated total is over 1200 named characters and counting.
  • Locked Room Mystery: The Big Idea, Reach's story.
  • Looks Like Cesare: Sara.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: Sara. As part of waking up, she vomits up her internal organs. She eats souls. Her favorite trick (both in and out of battle and bed) is to create random tentacles.
  • Love Is in the Air: A subconscious uncontrollable magical effect from at least one of the characters. And a controllable power for at least three (Aphrodite and two lust demons).
  • Meta Origin: All mutants seem to have a common genetic factor. The supernatural beings, however, are all over the map.
  • Made of Plasticine: on the rare occasions when death is allowed, and sometimes with regenerators. The "Voodoo-Wolves" are the most prominent example, apparently so fragile that they can be beheaded with a bare-handed strike from someone equivalent to a very well trained baseline.
  • Mad Scientist: The mutant power of Devisers allows them to create machines, drugs, etc. that defy the normal laws of science (cf. Gadgeteer Genius above). When combined with the effects of Diedrick's Syndrome (cf. Science-Related Memetic Disorder below), things get dangerous.
  • Magic A Is Magic A
  • Magical Native American: Heyoka; and, yes, that seems to be the entire basis for the character.
    • Or, more specifically, a deconstruction of this. Spirits can be rather...annoying, and besides that her powers are weak. And her life is screwed up. http://www.crystalhall.org/heyoka.html
      • He has very strong powers, but he has to be in the astral plane to use them
    • Actually, a lot of the Native Characters are like that; Swoop and Skinwalker come to mind. Kodiak is Caucasian, but follows a similar trend, seeing as he's Alaskan and has the spirit of the bear.
  • Magic Dance: Fey, to the Fire Elementals, during her Christmas story.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout
  • Menstrual Menace: Fey's first round of PMS was an event to remember.
  • Metamorphosis: The Exemplar superpower, crossed with Involuntary Shapeshifting (in the sense that it's their own powers doing it to them, and they have no control over the change).
  • Most Common Superpower: Justified as an explicit superpower, many mutants have a Body Image Template based on what they would like to look like and their powers transform them to fit, as a result the most common superpower really is being very attractive. There are various levels of this, ranging from Exemplar 1, gradual shapeshifting but otherwise merely above the average human, to Exemplar 2s, equivalent to the limit of baseline human potential, all the way up to 7.
    • The male version of this Biggus Dickus -- Weres also get this while not having the Exemplar trait, and Paige/Petra are endowed with both "gifts".
  • Mundane Utility
  • My Suit Is Also Super: Many Brick types' Nigh Invulnerability extends to their clothing and even weapons, which is explained by their invulnerability being due to psychokinetic forcefields. Not to mention Loophole's super-armour, which epitomises super armour in general - almost all the devisers and gadgeteers have some level of this. In fact, a lot of the school uniforms have some level of armour - particularly if Cecilia Rogers made them.
  • Narrative Profanity Filter: 'Hank unleashed several choice phrases that impugned the Monkey King’s ancestry, family heritage, sexual proclivities, and recreational interests. Obviously, Hannah Declan had learned more from her time on Army bases than how to shoot firearms.'
  • Naughty Tentacles: Carmilla/Sara Waite, who combines them with Combat Tentacles and Nightmare Fuel.
  • Nanomachines: See Samantha above
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: There's a lot of flexibility in some characters' power sets. And some are just outright AssPulls. The character Tennyo (the Ryoko look-alike) is the foremost example of this.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: In-universe example: Doctor Debt, a supervillain, steals millions of dollars and escapes without any weapons, property damage or civilian injuries. The Flying Bulldozer, his superhero nemesis, stops him by throwing cars at him, resulting in millions of dollars in property damage and dozens of civilian injuries.
  • Ninja School: The Yama Dojo.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries: justified, they're all Half Human Hybrids.
  • Noodle Incident: Invoked, by name - and caused, of course, by Jade.
    • Just as evident is Chaka's combat final, which is never referred to in more than passing - supposedly it can't even be described in a way that can do it justice.
      • Parents' Day and Hallowe'en were noodle incidents for a long time. The current NI is the Outcasts' Christmas trip, which seems by the mentions in other stories, to have been suitably disastrous.
        • Lampshaded in Parent's Day.
    • Circe plays with it by referencing incidents that haven't happened yet.

Grimes: Well, I hope that’s the end of all this madness.
Circe: Yes. Definitely. Whateley will never again be foolish or goofy or insane. Except for the popsicle-stick skyscraper. Or the giant magnifying glass. Or the exploding puddings. Or the escalator to nowhere. Or the...
Grimes: Oh Gods.

      • Although it should be noted that she's quoting from a famous episode of The Simpsons[3], and thus may or may not be serious.
    • Lancer's detention for the Birthday Brawl.
    • There's also the Isobel Anaelez case, in which a mutant was supposedly kidnapped by the MCO. Apparently she's become the poster child for mutant abductions for the purpose of experimentation. We don't know much more than that...
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Ayla spends tens of thousands of dollars getting the Poe dorm showers up to scratch. When he tries them out on their first operational morning, Fey uses them to punch him in the balls with a jet of water, because the girls were pissed off at his staring at them in the shower.
  • No Periods, Period: Averted, as many characters who are becoming female at varying rates have to deal with getting a period for the first time. Your Mileage May Vary on how well the authors address the issue, though.

Toni: "Oh, so that's where it comes from--- Tell me, do you have any little tricks that help tide your wife over on these heavy periods? They might come in handy next time Nikki goes into PMS!"

    • Also played straight in Sara's origin story where it is mentioned she'll never have a period again and is always fertile.
  • Older Than They Look, Younger Than They Look, Really Seven Hundred Years Old: Hat trick of deceptive age tropes
  • Omniscient Morality License: Played perhaps uncomfortably straight with the Tao, which ostensibly always knows just what is required to maintain 'the balance'. So far a few people have coughed but only Strawmen have actually debated against it. The omniscient-seeming Mrs. Potter may also count, though she seems to be more unambiguously on the side of the angels than many of the usual trope examples.
  • Open-Minded Parent: Some are, others... not so much.
  • Our Werebeasts Are Different: There several types "weres" that draw from numerous different archetypes.
  • Pajama-Clad Hero: One of the popular nicknames for Team Kimba in-universe is the Negligee Nightingales, referring to their first fight with the Yama Dojo Ninjas.
  • Parallel Porn Titles: Not of itself but other works, 'Grease, the Lolicon Version' and 'Ho School Musical' in regards to a bit character dressing oddly, but these are probably just snotty comments by some of the snarkers, rather than real movies.
    • Not only that, but Handmaidens can actually use a dream sequence to see all the different futures that can result from their actions.
  • Parental Abandonment: Common (Ayla, Jade, Chou etc.) but not universal (Toni, Nikki, Billie, Hank etc.).
  • Parody Sue: Joanne Gunnarson, written by Joe Gunnarson.
  • Part-Time Hero: And part time villains, too. They hang out in a bar called Superbad.
  • Pettanko: Lily and Jadis.
  • Plug N Play Friends: Team Kimba
  • Powered Armour: Rarely seen "onscreen", but present in the setting.
  • Power Nullifier: A few mutants have this power, but no nullifier device exists. Yet.
    • Special mention goes to the STAR League parents, who threaten their children with being forced into wearing fake "Power Nullifier Bracelets" until they're 18, or going to Whateley. The kids choose Whateley, only to find out that 1. The bracelets were fake and 2. Their parents had enrolled them in Whateley days before they asked them if they wanted to go.
  • Power Perversion Potential: The biggest example is Sara, but she's by no means the only one. However, some say that being a lust demon it is not perversion, rather that this was intentional. (And then there's Solange, who can use her powers to (a) make herself look and feel 'just that special' and (b) implant hypnotic suggestions, especially when her target's defenses are down...)
    • Honestly, the person who uses this the most, outside of Sara, is Harleen from Big Idea. Also, surprisingly, Jenny. They take GREAT advantage of this trope.
    • Chaka! She used her Ki powers to give her girlfriend a Ki-powered massage.
    • Glamours in general act as a mix of low level mind control / aphrodisiac.
  • Precursors: According to one theory put forth by some scientists in the universe, entire species and their evolution may be the playthings of an entity tentatively identified as Gaia. If true, it isn't clear how much this overlaps with 'natural' evolution (since by necessity 'untainted' data would be hard to come by) and what this entity's ultimate goals might be.
  • Pretty in Mink: Solange, and Kodiak even imagines her Naked in Mink.
  • Pronoun Trouble: Phase is intersexed. Heyoka shifts forms and genders. And then there's Generator and the J-Team, who are several entities who all are really the same girl...
  • Psmith Psyndrome: Fey's name is often misspelled by others as F-A-Y. The reader can tell that a character doesn't know the proper spelling by looking at how it's written in their dialogue. For some reason, though, characters that are aware of the correct spelling seem to know instinctively when it's being misspelled, despite "Fay" and "Fey" sounding exactly the same when spoken.
    • Averted hilariously in this exchange between female-drow Jobe (it's a long story) and Thunderbird:

Jobe: You can call me... (thinks) ...anti-Fey.
Thunderbird: Auntie Fay? If you say so.

Feeling boo-koo nervous, I looked around, and my jaw almost hit the floor of the cave. Something was bubbling down from the roof of the cavern. No, now that it was clearer, it wasn’t bubbling, it WAS the bubbles. It was only a congeries of iridescent globes, yet stupendous in its malign suggestiveness.

  • Quintessential British Gentleman: Fey's magic tutor Sir Wallace Westmont, who is a Shout-Out to John Steed of The Avengers.
  • The Rashomon: Most of the early stories are set amongst the same group of people, with the same events happening, but with each story taking place from a different character's Point of View.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Feral disapppeared because her author had to go away, and Ayla underwent retcons and character changes when Diane Castle took over.
  • Really Was Born Yesterday: Belphoebe, a cloned drow created by Belphegor using the cloning chamber he'd stolen from Jobe then accidentally imprinted the clone with a copy of his own memories. Hence while Belfy is chronologically 0, she looks 16 and is treated as such by the administration, staff and students.
  • Red Pill, Blue Pill: In Bladedancer's origin story, the Taoist Immortal Lan Caihe Ho offers Alex Farshine the choice: give up the magic sword and return to his mundane life, or keep it and become Handmaid Of The Tao, servant of powers of which she understands nothing.
  • Required Secondary Powers: Wallflower, because she can become invisible, logically couldn't see while invisible (because the light would pass through all of her without interacting, including her eyes). She never really thought about this before going to Whateley, when one of the scientists noted it. It then turns out that while invisible, she can see in the dark, apparently because she has an extra power that lets her sense her surroundings without light.
    • In fact, almost all mutants require secondary powers. Investigating them, and the exact means by which the laws of physics are being bent, is most of what the Whateley scientists spend their time investigating. According to Sara it all comes down to Pattern Theory.
  • Rock-Paper Switch: Chaka and Fey in "It's All in the Timing!"
  • Rotating Arcs: Each canon author has his or her own characters, and writes from their point of view.
    • This does have the downside in that arcs involving all of the characters get told piecemeal and if you're following the order recommended outright spoiled in some instances.
  • Rule of Three: Part of the laws of magic. Its a recent convention though according to Augenhail, only a few thousand years old.
  • Science-Related Memetic Disorder: A sort of example: Diedrick's Syndrome causes people to mimic typical mad scientist or supervillain behaviours, such as crazed rages, ranting monologues, revenge obsessions etc. Particularly common among Devisers (cf. Gadgeteer Genius, Mad Scientist above). Note that Word of God explains that Diedrick's is a mental illness, not specifically evil, and seen among heroes as well as villains. However the villainous examples (such as Diedrick himself) are much better known. Whateley students refer to an acute attack as "dricking out". Megadeath, for instance, is an incredibly nice guy when on his meds. Another, Olympia, however, is stark raving mad even when NOT having an attack.
  • Scry vs. Scry
  • Second Law of Gender Bending: Many of the changelings take to their new genders with aplomb. Others, notably Ayla Goodkind and Chou Lee, have much more of a problem with it.
    • Mostly because the Exemplar, Avatar and Shifter traits ALL switch the gender of the brain to match the body. Chou's a baseline, Phase has a combination of male and female BITs (male ones being responsible for the whole intersexed thing and still mentally male thing). Hive... has no excuse.
  • Secret Identity: Many practicing superheroes have one. Keeping enemies away from the family is a good thing. Also used to justify the use of in-school "code names," especially during powers testing, since records are stolen, or otherwise "acquired", by corrupt government agencies and others.
    • Not to mention that all Arena matches are inevitably filmed and sold to Mutant Deathmatch tv shows, especially the combat finals.
  • Self-Duplication: Troika can split into three identical people, while OMAG can split into at least six people but the duplicates don't seem to have the autonomy that Troika's dupes do.
  • Shared Universe
  • Shout-Out: Quite a lot of these, not least a character who looks just like Ryoko.
    • Including several direct references to trope names from this very wiki. (One fanfic author on the forums even uses trope names as his fic names.)
    • Dr. Bellows, named after the shrink from I Dream of Jeannie, is a shrink with a Genie Bottle (from said show) in his office. Jade uses the pink sand inside to animate Jinn.
    • The paperwork from Whateley goes through a shell company called Richards and Grimm Consulting.
    • And, Razzle Dazzle is possibly the best example. Including a Deconstruction of Doc Savage.
  • Shown Their Work: Anything by Diane Castle, which is parodied in Fractious, her Lit-Chick counterpart. Fractious cannot help doing this, to the point that a 20 page short story becomes a 600 page criminology textbook.
  • Spanner in the Works: Jade, at least twice. Special mention is that both times this is specifically prophesied by Hekate, who nevertheless fails to take appropriate precautions.
    • More specifically, the first time her propjesy says 'don't bother' and she believes it but Don Sebastiano doesn't listen. The second time she TRIES to take appropriate precautions and does a pretty good job. But how do you take precautions against someone who is dead using telekinesis to keep her heart pumping, removing a sacrifical dagger, murdering half your base, and telekinetically making them into a zombie army? All the while claiming to be a Vampire Princess?!
    • Besides the dagger, cut off the head, fill the mouth with garlic, burn the bodies, and put them into two seperate coffins.
      • The beauty of it is that it still wouldn't have worked, which is the point of Jades disinformation campaign.
  • Spell My Name With A U: Reverend Englund. It doesn't help that half of the canon authors actually do spell it "England."
  • Split Personality and Talking to Themself: Jade. Ayla and the others have made note of the fact that the J-Team needs their own set of pronouns. Not to mention that Jade's the only one shown so far able to have a conference with herself.
    • However at the heart of it Jade and Jinn roughly are the same, and as time has gone on Jade has been acting more like Jinn. Their talking to each other is just a natural extension of her powers duplicating her mind. Whether using her ability to effectively parallel process with all her duplicates mind linked with her counts is debatable.
  • Squishy Wizard: Magic users, psychics, and gadget-using types generally fall into this category when their bags of tricks run out. Which is an important caveat. Averting this is one of the major tactical decisions TK takes early on. And very effective it is too. When she starts waving Malachim's Feather about, Fey is the equal of most decent close-in fighters.
  • Stock Super Powers: Damn near all of them. The school has standard testing to evaluate what kind of powers someone has, how strong they are, and which curriculum modules will develop them most effectively.
    • Averted though with Jade, who the hell has ever heard of her powers. Lampshaded partially by the police testing her and having difficulty classifying her powers.
  • Strawman Political: The Goodkinds. Fridge Logic raises the question why they are unassailable as well by the superpowered community.
    • Brute force isn't going to work well because the Goodkinds are rich, famous, and at least moderately Genre Savvy. They believe in hiring competent help -- including security, who will be highly trained, motivated, and equipped with the best that money can buy -- and any open attacks on them are apt to result in major public backlash. Add to that that superpowered individuals in the setting are generally less than 'cosmically' powerful and their community is far from united (to the point where quite a few, upon learning of a pending attack, would do their own best to stop it), and it really starts to look like the Goodkinds are here to stay.
  • Strong as They Need to Be: Chou Lee's powers are given to her by the Tao, and it gives her as much power as it sees fit. Word of God says nothing can stand in her way if the Tao deems it necessary. But usually it doesn't.
  • Super Gender Bender: A central premise but uncommon in the greater community.
  • Superhero: Duh!
  • Super-Hero Origin: Ditto duh!
  • Super-Hero School: Whateley Academy, although due to it being funded by Superheroes, Supervillains, and Superneutrals, it doesn't push the "hero" thing.
  • Superpowerful Genetics
  • Superpower Lottery: And guess who pulled the jackpot(s)? Everyone
  • Super Registration Act: Internationally administered by the MCO, in the US administered by the Department of Paranormal Affairs (DPA). DPA maintains records of all US citizens with abilities beyond the human baseline, and issues their mandatory Mutant ID (MID) cards. For international ease of travel, the DPA uses the MCO model for this card.
  • Super Villain: Lots. Many send their own children to Whateley. Part of why nobody with half a brain messes with a students family, or attacks the school.
  • Technicolor Eyes: Unusual eye-colour is a normal byproduct of a mutant's emergence, and a classic "give-away" even when their appearance is otherwise that of a baseline human. Known colors are pretty much anything under the sun, but purple and normal eye colors with bright tinges seems to be the most common.
  • Technopath: Several of these, most notably Merry, Dr. Palm, and Samantha Everheart
  • That Came Out Wrong: "Nikki keeps fondling my bling-bling!"
  • There Are No Therapists: Averted, so far three characters have been portrayed as competent therapists, two of whom are telepathic. Teen Drama is preserved because for various reasons characters often are less than cooperative with their therapist. When they work with their therapist they tend to get good help with even the oddest problems, and considering what the therapists see on a daily basis they probably would be believed, but when has an angsty teenager ever believed that anyone could understand their problems...
  • The Fatalist: A major aspect of the Taoist religion, we've seen them accept murder because it was destined. Not happily mind, but...
  • Third Law of Gender Bending: Played straight, especially with clothing stereotypes:
    • The girls all end up in lingerie style sleepwear, just in time to get into a very public brawl against a bunch of student ninjas from a rival school.
    • The only ones who voice any objection to dressing or acting girly are Chou (who favours mandarin tops and yoga pants) and Ayla (who actually owns more silk lingerie than any of the girls, admitting he likes it too much to stop).
    • The girls even make use of the stereotype, using masking technology to make eavesdroppers think they're talking about vapid girly stuff, when in reality they're talking Serious Business.
    • This law tends to permeate most of the stories. By the time they arrive at Whateley, the four main characters who are shifting from male to female have all acquired the habits of tittering endlessly, pillow-fighting, constantly talking about their periods, and blaming everything on their hormones because that's what women do.
      • The Unfortunate Implications may well be in-universe: remember, these are a bunch of guys who were turned into girls who are trying to live as their new gender based on how they think teenage girls act. Especially given that their brains, along with the rest of their bodies, have been redesigned based on the aforementioned conception.
    • Jade displays a tendency early on to adopt the stereotypical submissive behavior of her mother as a way of making herself feel more feminine. She also likes it when her boyfriend is macho and dominant - but only when it's about something she wants to do anyway.
  • Third Option Love Interest: Chaka for Thunderbird. An interesting example, considering that he had no clue that the other girls were interested in him in that way.
  • Throw It In: In "Ayla and the Birthday Brawl", when everyone was introducing themselves on the jet, the author accidentally skipped Tennyo. When this was pointed out on the forums, her reaction was basically, "Oops. Just... uh, pretend she was having a shy-fit. Yeah." Later, when she was writing the scene from Aquerna's point of view for "Straight from the Squirrel's Mouth", she had Aquerna notice Tennyo slink back when her turn approached.
  • Tim Taylor Technology - Deviser gear frequently works this way, presumably because needing enough energy to work is one of the few laws of physics to which devisers pay attention. Knick-Knack is a big believer in this style of Devising.
  • Transgender: Everybody in Team Kimba and quite a number of other characters in their own stories. A uncommon (but apparently growing more common, see Lampshade Hanging above) side effect of the Exemplar power means you'll be changed whether you like it or not.
    • Transsexualism: A number of Transgender characters qualify as this since they had felt as though they were the other gender to begin with before transforming. Jade is a more traditional example, being the only member of Team Kimba who has not physically transformed in any way and is searching for a way to become a "real" girl.
  • Troperiffic: At some points in the story the characters themselves are referring to tropes.
  • Trouble Magnet Gambit: A man who is known to be rather friendly with the local weres is slipped a fungus that affects them like catnip does cats by a man who wants all the land he owns.
  • True Companions: Pretty much summarized in the last bit of "Away from Home".
  • Universe Bible: See All There in the Manual above.
  • Unwinnable Training Simulation: In some of the school's training sessions, the student squads face off against each other in this sort of scenario. Its generally to stop them from thinking they're invulnerable and undefeatable.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Mr. Cool is used by a lot of people during "Have Yourself An EVIL Little Christmas". He still ends up profitting more than most of them, without even being aware of the whole deal. He even gets a girlfriend who likes the supervillain stuff!
  • Unstoppable Rage: Some mutants (called ragers) have this problem, where they can be provoked into a bloodthirsty or destructive state. While some of these ragers are villainous in nature, the ones that are seen and focused on are sympathetic and, unfortunately, ostracized for their condition. Merry and Eldritch are somewhat of a subversion, though: though they would be considered "ragers" in universe, they are much more focused and systematic in their rage, possibly making them even MORE dangerous than the berserk velociraptor that can move at speeds higher than 100 MPH.
  • Upgrade Artifact: The sentient, talking, magic sword Destiny's Wave granted Alex Farshine qing gong powers, Taoist healing knowledge, peak physical fitness, superb martial-arts skills, Implausible Fencing Powers, and the ability to speak, read and write Chinese. And turned him into a hot Chinese girl.
  • Useless Superpowers: Occasional side-effect of the Masquerade.
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: This describes Team Kimba's life in a nutshell, what with the Boston Brawls, the Voodoo Wolves, etc. Still, the emphasis is a bit more on "Go to School" then with other things.
  • Wanton Cruelty to the Common Comma: Some authors are more prone to this than others.
  • Weapons Kitchen Sink: There are martial arts instructors, so they have experts helping them choose, if they don't already have a weapon. Bladedancer has a mystical jade jian, Fey now has a mithril scimitar, and Chaka is learning everything she can (right now she's a chain fighter and wields a meteor hammer). Lancer, because of his power set, has two swords made out of paper. Jinn is made of this - literally.
  • Webcomic Time: Since the series started in 2004, they have managed to move forward way under a year of Whateley time.
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Minor characters often have this.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Certain humans (The Goodkinds and Humanity First!) have this attitude towards mutants.
  • What Measure Is a Non Super: Certain mutants (The villainous super-ninja Nex for example) have this attitude towards ordinary humans.
  • The Wiki Rule: The Whateley Academy Wiki. Before that there was The Whateley Bible, but it's defunct now.
  • Wizarding School: It may not be Whateley's main purpose, but the Mystic Arts Department stands as one of the world's best Wizarding Schools all on its own.
  • The Wonka: Thorn
  • Xanatos Gambit: Invoked by name. Also, that story pretty much goes through the index.
  • X-Ray Vision: Peeper. And yes, he abuses the hell out of it. Interestingly enough, he can't turn it OFF, explaining some of his issues. Not all, just some.
  1. The similarities to a certain Marvel character have been Lampshaded in-story, where Marvel Comics actually exist as well and have created and copyrighted many of the same characters as in real life, but she's very much her own person.
  2. Sort of.
  3. Marge Versus The Monorail