Alias: Lady Payback
Real Name: Samantha Sable
Former Aliases: Nightengale
Occupation: Professional Mob Enforcer
Abilities: Skilled Catburglar, Peak Human Athleticism
Affiliation: Circle of R.O.P.E., APEX Alliance
Samantha was born into a family of crime. Her father was a member of the Metrobay mafia located in Grime City for several years and enjoyed the life of crime, drugs, theft, and murder; that is until his darling daughter was born. As he held her moments after her birth, he realized he did not want his child to grow up in that kind of world. Samantha’s father went to the authorities to try and turn in a new lease on life, but what he didn’t know was that the many dirty cops inside the Police Department were prepared for such an event. Instead of a clean start, Samantha’s father instead found himself at the bottom of Metrobay Harbor.
Samantha was basically raised by the mob, which was eventually absorbed into the Circle of R.O.P.E., learning that Max Indeks was their financier and benefactor. She was dutifully indoctrinated with R.O.P.E. ideology and showed exceptional skill as a catburglar and spent many years learning her techniques with fellow jewel thief Clawdette, whom she shared a mutual admiration and respect for.
Samantha knew full well what had happened to her father, and despite never knowing him, she felt a connection to him. She too wanted a better life, one without all the corruption and perversion around her, but the life of a criminal was all she was taught and all she knew, and she knew that if she were to betray her “family” she might share a similar fate as that of her father.
When Clawdette later betrayed the crimelords and went rogue, Samantha became R.O.P.E.’s number one thief and hitman, taking the alias of “Lady Payback”, delivering “payback” to any who crossed R.O.P.E.’s way. While she enjoyed her new recognition, she similarly felt cheated, as if Clawdette had done what she had always longed for yet lacked the courage to attempt.
That all changed when Samantha suddenly became the heir of the Nightengale cloak, gaining a vast amount of power. However, due to her sordid history, the avatar of the Nightengale did not awaken within her as it had done with her predecessors. Despite this, she was still gifted with exceptional power and ability and decided to leave her life of crime behind her and live the life her father had dreamed for her.
Samantha knew she could not just quit R.O.P.E. and so she used her status as Lady Payback to gain insider information and to subsequently thwart crimes before they were ever committed, becoming an especially bothersome pest to R.O.P.E. and Max Indeks. Despite her dual lives, she was absolutely dedicated to leaving her dark past behind and starting over, as a heroine of Metrobay and an example of virtue and honor.
But this was not to be. Her double life was discovered by Trixtress, whom she had shared an exceptionally heated rivalry with and had been promoted over several times. Trixtress was eager to eliminate her rival once and for all, but Max had other plans. Lady Payback had been an essential enforcer of R.O.P.E.’s ideology and her absence would not only weaken R.O.P.E.’s reputation but violate R.O.P.E. policy forbidding the mistreatment of other R.O.P.E. members. Max instead put her through the Modification Machine, erasing her troublesome heroic inclinations and stripping away her purity, leaving only her cruel and twisted alter ego, Lady Payback, behind.
Max, in a twisted form of amusement and poetic justice, gave Samantha her fresh start in life. He gave her a full promotion and left her in charge of R.O.P.E.’s personal security, a task she performs with ruthless ambition and perverse pleasure. She retains no memory of her time as the crimefighter Nightengale and has shown no signs of recognition or remorse in dealing with any of her previous Superheroine Squad teammates.
The mantle of the Nightengale, unable to exist in the hands of a woman of pure evil, slipped from Samantha’s grasp and wound up in the hands of its destined custodian, a good-hearted R.O.P.E. associate named Robin Ravenwood.
Lady Payback has since emerged as one of the members of the APEX Alliance, Max’s personal squad of “superheroines” intent on winning over public sentiment and humiliating the Superheroine Squad at every turn.
When she possessed the Nightengale Cloak, Samantha had access to a wide range of magical powers, ranging from flight to super strength to even mind control. She has since lost the cloak and her superpowers.
However, her years of experience and training as a R.O.P.E. enforcer remain with her. She is a skilled martial artist, an expert spy, and a perfect shot with firearms.