Norman Osborn has always been exceptionally bright, surpassing all those his age when in education with his knowledge of mathematics and the various sciences. It helped him to rocket into the world of business, with his keen ability for inventing and designing fully functioning pieces of tech making him formidable in that area.
Not only this, but his smarts make him a formidable opponent, not physically, but know that his ability to learn will be used against anyone it can be used against. He is quick to learn patterns and trends, meaning strategy used against him will seldom work more than once.
Above everything else, Norman is a businessman. He is fully aware of how his own business works and can run it with clockwork precision, knowing exactly when, where and how things should be done. His name is not that well known for no reason.
Another key part of his business demeanour means he is exceptional at public speaking, a gift which not only helps him to strike deals and successfully land pitches to directors but can also be used on a more manipulative level. He can be smooth and charismatic as many people in the world of business are, and he knows just what to say at what time to get the greatest effect. Hell, he could convince an entire building of people that everything was fine when his face looked as if it would literally peel off.
Another pro to his business acumen is the wealth that came with it. From when his company was originally set up, the money soon followed and never stopped coming in. It put him in the top tier of wealthy men in the country and meant that he can buy what he wants, when he wants, and provide for his son Harry (when he feels it appropriate. The kid got every material item he could imagine, whether he actually wanted it or not.)
Known as the Osborn Curse, the Retroviral Hypodysplasia disease is a recessive gene found within the males of the Osborn family. The first effects are seen when the person with the disorder reaches their twenties. Involuntary shakes in the hands are usually the first sign, and symptoms only worsen from there. The immune system and the nervous system are greatly affected, making them and the recipient weaker for it. As they age, more severe and visible symptoms can be witnessed: green patches on and under the skin often resembling scales, hair length increases substantially and becomes brittle, nails and teeth grow more rapidly to resemble claws and fangs, internal pains and arthritis making movements difficult. In Norman’s case this resulted in his dependency on a cane.
The disease is also said to affect the brain, making certain parts deteriorate and essentially effecting how the recipient can act in certain situations. Anything related to emotion tends to be the most effected by the disease, making it difficult for meaningful relationships to be established.
The disease is incurable, and in all cases has been the cause of death.
Norman Osborn has always taken pride in his work but if asked by the people closest to him (not that there are many) they may argue that he is a little too into it. They would be correct. While Norman is easily able to view the bigger picture, he is also just as quick to fixate on the trivial things, as well as one thing at a time. When he first discovered his Retroviral Hypodysplasia, it became his sole purpose to find a cure, of sorts at least. If something is of interest to him or if something is to be beneficial to him, he will pursue it mercilessly until he a) obtains it or b) something else comes along to challenge his interest.
To start with it was the pursuit of power and money, then it was the courting of his wife, then the disease cure. There is always something. While there is nothing wrong with being fully focussed and committed to one thing, it definitely gets in the way. His wife was always able to keep his mind on track, but without her around, it is more difficult.
there is potential here for him to have fixations on certain heroes, not just Spider-man. Tony Stark/Iron-man as one of his main business rivals, Steve Rogers because of the links to the super-soldier serum, and obviously Spider-man because...well Spider-man.
The Oz Formula
The Oz Formula was formed for two reasons: the first as a government funded project attempting to recreate the Super Soldier Formula that had created Captain America, and the second as Norman’s attempt to create a cure for his family’s disease. The logic was that if someone like Steve Rogers could become something like Captain America, curing him of every ailment he had, then why couldn’t it work for Norman?
After several successful attempts with animal testing, but no successful human trials, the project was scrapped. However, Norman took some of the formula himself, figuring that the effects would either cure him or kill him. Neither happened, but the effects of the Hypodysplasia did lessen somewhat. This vial was placed into the Special Projects Division shortly after, but not before Harry had to opportunity to tamper with it, unintentionally creating his own version of the Oz Formula.
It is my intention to have Norman become the Green Goblin at some point in the future but I want to develop him as his own character beforehand. I want to run with the idea that the version of the Oz Formula he took has given him a more delayed reaction to the Goblin persona, whereas Harry’s version was more instantaneous.
The eventual effects of the Oz Formula are increased strength and agility, to that of a superhuman level. This means that he would be more than capable of taking on any of the stronger heroes in hand-to-hand combat. At his strongest he would be able to pick up an average adult male, bend metal and leave at the least a considerable dent in concrete with a punch. He would be quicker than the normal man, matching speeds of twenty-something year old athletes and being able to outrun slow moving vehicles, which would surprise people given the decrepit state he can be found in thanks to the disease. Stamina is increased thanks to the formula as well, meaning these actions can be performed for a much longer period of time than normal. The formula also grants some level of regenerative healing, evident from the offset when the effects of his Hypodysplasia become less prominent. Not cured but dulled just enough to stop him from dying as a cause of the disease. It does not allow the ability to regrow limbs (similar to characters like Deadpool) but it does mean that he can heal wounds on the body at a quicker rate than a normal human. Severely broken bones take between 2-3 weeks to heal as opposed to the normal 6-10.
The main issue with the Oz formula, in all its iterations, is that it causes a level of mental instability. Aggression and paranoia are two of the more common side-effects, as well as the user having less self-control and being less able to make competent decisions. Again, this is something I want to develop over time, with Norman’s gradual descent into madness and the creation of the Green Goblin.
A Young OsbornLife was a complicated thing at the best of times. It was a constant shift in ups and downs, and little things slotting together at awkward angles to create the bigger, more disjointed picture. A struggle. Norman knew that. His father was a failure in every sense of the word; with business, with finance, with family. ‘An inventor’ he claimed to be, yet nothing he invented had ever been worth anything, even from an early age Norman could see that. Failure doesn’t provide for the family. Failure doesn’t provide for anyone and so a personal vow was made: Norman was going to be wealthy, Norman was going to be successful, and if it ever came to it, Norman was going to be a good father, a better father than the abysmal example he’d had up until this point.
Norman studied long and hard, a natural knack for engineering and business saw him rocket through his education and straight into work afterwards. Someone to watch...that is what he was dubbed. A scientific force of nature able to understand and create both chemical and technological marvels…something his father had never been able to accomplish. He sold certain creations on and sold the rights to others, slowly building up his reputation. A former professor took note, striking a deal with the young Osborn, liking his entrepreneurial flair and gave Osborn opportunities that would have previously been unobtainable. A building for one, and a solid foundation to work from. Osborn and Stromm. The company name had a ring to it.
Emily Lyman…how he managed to wrangle a date with her he never actually worked out. She was exactly as he was: young, intelligent, ambitious, with one exception; her feet were firmly on the ground whilst Norman’s head was way in the clouds. That was the key difference. That was what captivated him. Business had taken over his life and she acted as a counter to that, allowing him to dream bigger and better whilst simultaneously keeping him on track. A tether to a helium balloon. An anchor to a runaway ship.
He had never known love like this, nor would he again.
Years passed. The relationship flourished. The business flourished. Never forget about the business. Norman spent less and less time at the company, opting to spend as much time with his now fiancé as possible. Young and in love. Hopelessly so. Stromm had everything at the company in order so there was nothing to worry about. Some said they married too young, but they were taking life by the horns. It was what they wanted. His hands were shaking the entire day, but it went off without a hitch. His father couldn’t be there to see it…shame. Some said they were too young to think about having children but for the man who had everything, this was the one thing he was missing.
They say that terrible things come in threes, and they did. They say that those at the top have a long way to fall, and fall Norman Osborn did. The first came shortly after the birth of his son: the death of his wife. The birth had taken everything from her and she was too weak to continue. There was nothing he could do to save her. Was it his son’s fault? Technically, no, but Norman needed some form of outlet for his grief.
Work became his distraction after her death, and with that came the second. Stromm in charge of their company had been a mistake; without Norman’s presence or watchful eye the other had spent his time embezzling the company funds and as expected Norman was furious. His mentor and his partner…ruining what he had built. What he had planned form day one. Norman had the other promptly arrested and took full control over the entire company, rebranding from the old Osborn and Stromm into the power house known as Oscorp. On that day, he decided that nothing would get between him and his work again. No distractions. No exceptions.
Roughly four years had passed before the third surfaced, and it was something that Norman had been worried about for a long time. Working from home had become a necessity as childcare was an issue. Shaky hands had become something of a regular occurrence but collapsing in his study had not been something he had expected. His ears were ringing, and the shaking had moved from his hands all the way down to his legs, catching him off balance, letting him fall to the floor. He had no idea how long he was down, but he righted himself eventually, entire body still shaking and twitching. He looked back to see Harry in the other room…just sat watching. The little goblin…the demon child. He had no idea what was coming.
Ignorance had been Norman’s nemesis so far…a naive thought that his family’s disease may skip a generation had come to surface as a mere fantasy. Here he was, a man of his talent and of his intelligence…a man of his desirability, suddenly stricken with an illness he could neither cure nor control. He became the miserable old man before his time. Obviously. According to the Osborn family records he had already reached his prime and it had flown passed him without so much as a second to stop and breathe. He was now working to save himself and his legacy. The first Osborn to avoid failure was now failing, and he couldn’t have that.
Search For a Cure
There was a theory Norman had, inspired by tales from when he was younger that he knew now to be fact. A super soldier had been created during the 1940’s to help with the war efforts, and it was pitched to the government that Norman intended to recreate that formula. There were two reasons for this: the selfish and the seemingly selfless. It was a formula that once created would enable the government to recreate the super soldier program, something which might be beneficial in a world where meta-humans and mutants seemed to be more and more common. That would cement Oscorp’s business indefinitely. On the other hand, there was the hope that the recreated formula would cure Norman of his disease. If it could work on someone with as many afflictions as Captain Steve Rogers, then there was no reason why it couldn’t work on him.
When Harry was old enough, Norman had him enrolled to Europe for his education. It got the kid out of his way, so he could fully focus on work, but it would also allow him all the opportunities that Norman had to work for himself. He was providing Harry with everything he had never been given. It was for his own good…whether he saw it or not. But the child was back soon enough it seemed. Lab fire. An explosion of some kind. Nowhere else would take him so he had to return to Norman’s care. It was ridiculous. If he would just stop and think about what he was doing, he would understand, but no. Harry was too involved in rebellion, and it was something Norman could not be bothered with. At the end of the day, if Norman could not synthesise a cure for this…it would fall on Harry, so if he had to seem like a pushy parent just to get his son to ensure both their survivals, then so be it. Like hell was the Osborn line going to die out like this. He no longer gave his son the time of day, until the point he stepped up that was how it would remain.
Work over the following years was more and more stressful. Norman’s condition was worsening as every months passed. Sections of skin were becoming green in hue, peeling and oozing and disgusting. Nails and teeth were growing rapidly, making him seem more monstrous than anything. The face of Oscorp was no longer a face people wanted to see, and he became fixated on the formula. Animal testing was successful, but it always was. The first scientist to try it lost his mind completely, becoming angry and taking out a security team. Interesting, but not right. From then, test subjects were difficult to come by…willing ones that is. It all ended the same. The government was getting restless for answers. Norman was getting restless for answers. He spent night after night awake, thinking of new angles to attack this but they all proved unfruitful. Harry came and went but there were more important things to worry about than what he was doing.
Death was approaching, and Norman was going to beat it.
Only the Strong Survive
He had it. Finally. After years of work he finally had it: The Oz Formula. It had to be. Everything had been calculated meticulously, every single failure accounted for. The shake in his hands could have been from both the nerves and the disease. He had to test it himself. It was officially his last chance. He was constantly in pain, walking was a struggle, skin peeling off into slimy and scaly sections…he looked more dead than alive. This test…it would either work as intended, curing him of his disease and making him much stronger in the process…or it would kill him. At this point, anything would be more favourable than dealing with this.
To an extent anyway. The chronic pain he so often felt was suddenly alleviated, turning from an excruciating sensation to a dull throbbing, Lesser than normal, but still there. He should be happy, but the business side of his brain was pissed…irrational. He had not cured himself…and he had not created a super soldier, therefore in his eyes he was a failure. The project was pulled after that by the officials, the results not being what they had wanted. He needed to let it go but he just couldn’t. He had to improve it…or create something better.
Like Father, Like Son
Harry had returned from Harvard at some point, much to Norman’s evident disgust. The young male just looked miserable all the time and it was enough to drive him mad. He offered the boy a job, if anything to keep him from loitering around the house. With the termination of the Oz Formula project, the relocation of all that research into the Special Projects Unit and the added pressures of trying to stay relevant against larger competitors such as Stark and Pym, the last thing Norman needed was his son getting in the way.
Easier said than done.
Shaky hands. That was how it started every time. In his son it was no different. It was time for the talk…not even the normal father/son talk. This was the talk about how, from this point onwards, he was dying. Norman took no pride in telling Harry all of this, but he could sense in his son a resentment for it. Let the child be a child. He still had many years to go before it became a proper issue. As bad as it sounded, Harry needed to experience it. The disease was a part of them.
Besides, Norman may have taken the formula but there was no guarantee it was working. Sure, the effects were lessened, but it was still there.
Harry became even more distant, if that were possible. Typical of a weak-minded boy.: shutting down the second something inconvenient came along. Norman kept himself busy that following year. Designing new tech. Designing new weapons. Continued experimentation on a new form of Oz and on potential cures for his curse.
There was an alert, direct from the Special Projects Division, teams sent in to check what the hell was going on. Norman watched from his office. Cameras showed his son…a twisted version of his son. He had taken initiative and tried to heal himself. Now look at him. Broken. Dying. Disgusting. He didn’t get much better, alternating randomly between better and worse. It was a curious reaction to something which Norman himself had created…something which should, if anything, have had the same affect. Curious.
Norman watched from afar, publicly distancing himself from his son after his ‘breakdown.’ A man of such stature and such influenced as Norman Osborn couldn’t be associated with someone like that, even though he was family.
And yet, Norman had never felt prouder.
ooc name Brandon
timezone + 0 gmt
other characters None
original earth prime earth