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Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker

"Where there's smoke, there's fire."

0 · 444 views · located in Atlas City

a character in “Hadean”, as played by CrossKnight35

Description

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Theme 1 – Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance OST - Rules of Nature https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3472Q6kvg0
Theme 2 – Breaking Benjamin - Blow me Away https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1VIh_lEP_o
Theme 3 – Sin Shake Sin - Can't Go to Hell https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R2ct_Gkq-HQ
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Full Name: None
Alias: Ezekiel “Zeke” Walker, Efreet, Pyromancer
Age: 32 years old
Gender: Male
Ethnicity: Kurdish

Hair: Black

Eye color: Hazel

Body: Average muscular body, built for a balance of strength and endurance.

Height: 1.72 meters/ 5'8

Weight: 78 kg/ 172 lbs

Hometown: “Some shithole in Syria”

Affiliation(s): Maxwell Landon (employer)

Personality: Zeke’s blood burns as hot as his flames. Short-tempered and foul-mouthed, Zeke fights first and shoots questions second. He speaks in short, terse sentences. His prose is beige and direct, accompanied by a piercing, unblinking stare that challenges you even in silence.

Despite what first impressions may imply, Zeke enjoys conversations, especially with those bold enough to hold their ground, even when he questions their beliefs. He has a distaste for weakness, of both body and mind, but especially the latter, believing that one should fight for their right to live in this world. On the other hand, Zeke despises unnecessary deaths, and goes out of his way to minimise collateral damage in his pursuits.

Zeke's not all business, however. He has a soft spot for cats, having always wanted one ever since he came to America. Unfortunately, any notion of bringing one home would only lead to disaster, as he is allergic to them. He has settled on admiring from a distance, often leaving behind cat food to strays in Atlas city's alleys.

Likes:
- Cats: seeing one in America was love at first sight.

- Fiction books

- Junk food

- Strong-willed people

- Water


Dislikes:
- Guns: he’d use them if absolutely necessary, but generally prefers not to. His flames solve most problems anyway.

- Pretension

- Indecision

- Fanaticism



Fears:
- Water

- Substance addiction

- Ghosts

- Telepaths


Skills:
- Krav Maga: taught to him after attaining the "Efreet" codename.

- Savate: studied during his time at Atlas City.

- Marksmanship training

- Bomb arming and defusal

- Questionable driving skills

- Drink mixing (thanks Chaotix)


Costume Identities:

Image

A fireproof and impact-resistant costume crafted for him by The Shape's associates, with a hooded gas mask featuring multiple vision modes to help him operate amidst his own fire and smoke.


Equipment:
- Combat knife

- Incendiary grenades (3 at a time)

- Grease grenades (3 at a time)

- AA12 automatic shotgun

- Cagiva Canyon 500 motorbike



Image


Background:
The sand beneath his feet. The sun over his head. The roar of automatic fire, bellowing across the desert. Heat. Flame. Death. The super known as Efreet could not remember a life before his time as a child soldier, when he fought for causes he did not understand, for people he did not know. He survived a myriad battles, mostly by chance, even as others died around him. One day, when it seemed his luck had ran out, he emerged unscathed from a landmine... activating the powers hidden within him. That day, a once-nameless child soldier burnt brighter and hotter than the sun, scorching the battlegrounds in flames worthy of a demon.

Demon. That was what his superiors called him. With his newfound powers, he was granted the code name ‘Efreet’, after the fiends of Islamic mythology. For years, he served the cause, burning infidels to cinders and scattering their ashes to the winds. He did not question, or wonder, or protested. He was their living weapon. Until one faithful afternoon, when a group of Americans ambushed Efreet and his team. Tensions were high. Bodies fell around him. His superiors screamed in his ear. At that moment, something snapped. He turned his flames on both allies and enemies, incinerating the desert into fields of blood and glass. It was over as soon as it started, with a myriad dead on both sides. There was silence. Efreet stood alone. For the first time in years, he saw a chance for freedom and took it, impersonating one of the dead Americans to depart his war-torn country.

Several years passed, and Efreet - now Zeke - had found a new life in Atlas City. By night, he worked as a bouncer for the club Shapeless. By day, he donned the mantle of a supervillain-for-hire, his powers over fire and explosions equally capable of breaching the strongest locks and felling the mightiest foes. He found a new life in the west, but he couldn’t help but feel like something was missing. Something beyond riches and survival...

Image

Powers:

Pyrokinesis -
[Breaker - 2 / Blaster - 8 / Striker - 6 / Shaker - 4]
Zeke can control fire around him in a five metre radius. He can stoke, suppress, and direct them in varying speed and power. Zeke can also shroud his body in fire to keep melee opponents at bay.

Blast Embers -
[Brute - 5 / Shaker - 7 / Blaster - 4 ]
Zeke generates tiny, glowing embers from his body that he ignites with his pyrokinesis. These particles, which he calls his 'Blast Embers’ are very versatile, capable of turning into short explosive bursts or raging fires. To survive his own explosions, Zeke’s body has adapted to be fireproof and twice as durable as an average human’s.

Power Origins:
Trauma.

Image


Color Code:#cc501a

So begins...

Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Cannonade Character Portrait: Amy Lin Character Portrait: Leah Lin Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Kiran Kingsley Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Joseph Wright Character Portrait: Silentium Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Sairyn Pendrake Character Portrait: Hugo Hemrod Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Hudson Li Character Portrait: Ezekiel Walker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Gideon Gauss Character Portrait: Evangeline Richter
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March 12th, 2045, 9:40am: Atlas City, North Carolina, USA

Day 2


Albert's comms crackled to life as a reply came through. "HQ here Albert. Not certain on that ETA yet, government is supposed to be filling us in on that soon. Sounds like the weapon is some sort of canon, or artillery, not sure. They're going to level the residential area close to the beach, they want civvies moved to the West as much as possible to avoid any collateral."

______________________________________________________


As Vicki and Maeve arrived on scene to help defeat the Beast of Decay, close to a dozen of its offspring rushed up onto the beach, with 3 targeting Maeve, 2 targeting Vicki, and the remaining others charged towards where Yue, Jericho, and Alex were operating. The sand behind these creatures darkened, as patches of dark mold grew.

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And explosion of noise erupted from the entrance of one of the roads leading to the beach, as several of the Beast's offspring were torn to shreds, some bursting into bits of flame. The massive .50 caliber machine gun Richard had was making quick work of the offspring, but this was little more than a temporary measure. The man in tweed too had fired off shots, taking out two more of the dark beasts before needing to reload.

Down another adjacent street, explosions could be heard as offspring got blasted into gory, misty messes. Richard and the man in tweed looked over to see Man-Hawk working to keep his own street cleared of monsters, and allowing more innocents to escape.

______________________________________________________


Three more offspring landed around Man-Hawk, heavy, wet breathing audible all around him as they all lashed out with their veins, and malformed, claw equipped arms. So far he was managing to dodge the attacks, but another distraction had cropped up, now bursting from... His coms? His phone?

The sound was blaring from phones, radios, TVs, and everything else across the city.

______________________________________________________


Across the city, supers and humans alike, both heroes, villains, and average folk, got the startling, hopeless tone of a National Emergency Alert coming through on whatever speakers were close by. Even the heroes on the beach, the NAHLA heroes, ACHI, and SINS were getting the same message.

"This message is being transmitted at the request of the United States Government. This is not a test. An existential threat against the United States of America has appeared on the coast of Atlas City, North Carolina. The United States Government has commenced preparations for a counter offensive against the threat. A forward assault base will be established in the residential area of Atlas City closest to beach front. All homes and buildings in this area will be demolished in 20 minutes to create space for this counter offensive. Please evacuate the area immediately and retreat to safe zones set up by emergency and government services, as well as hero organizations. Safe Zones will be located in the following locations."

The message continued by listing various locations across the city to be retreated to. 20 minutes. The city had 20 minutes to ensure all living civilians were out of the front line before the military did whatever it was they had planned.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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On the outskirts of the city, where the beach met concrete, a gigantic dump truck rolled into the scene. Its yellow hull was blackened with grime and grease, its labels long faded into patchy, barely legible gibberish. Upon its bed were crates upon crates upon crates, stacked and pressed together, olive green with telltale warning labels. 'DANGER.' 'MILITARY GRADE EXPLOSIVES.' 'NOT FOR CIVILIAN USE'.

Tiny orange specks came to rest around the hull of the truck, like embers nestling in a furnace. They glided and floated from the window, where a pair of crimson goggles glowed in the shade. A leather-gloved hand pressed a button on the radio.

"This is Pyromancer. I'm in position," a voice announced. Masculine, rough and raspy, muffled through the filters of his gas mask. His hand balled into a fist, then slammed into the radio. Glass and plastic shattered. Electricity sputtered. No evidence will be left behind.

Pyromancer stomped on the pedal. The truck's engines kicked into high gear. Smoke sputtered from the exhaust. And where there was smoke, there was fire, blasting out of the pipe and bringing the truck faster and louder than it was built for. Sand scattered into the wind under heavy offroad tires. Ahead, three colossal beings clashed under the grey skies. An eldritch beast, a titan made of stars, and Pyromancer's comrade, Maeve, or Lig-na-Paiste - the last serpent of Ireland, nearly freed from her binds.

The embers hovering around the truck multiplied fivefold. As the truck rolled closer and closer, Pyromancer felt the gusts of wind raging in the vicinity, too strong to be natural. The sand tossed and scattered against his window, and to his right, he saw a multitude of figures on the boardwalk. Supers. No doubt one of them was handling this wind. He bowed his head, light glinting across his goggles.

Perfect.

Pyromancer rode the truck into the wind. Several tonnes of iron floated upwards, as light and easy as a feather. Embers converged underneath his truck, away from the explosives. He kicked the door off its hinge and dived.

He brought his thumb and index finger together, and snapped.

Boom!

The truck flipped up high, once, twice, over and over, launched by fire and propelled by the wind - straight towards the Beast of Decay's face. The impact ignited the explosives in an instant. Flames roiled and shrapnel mangled the Beast. Pyromancer rolled across the sand, then recovered into a three-point landing. He directed his gaze towards the beach, where one of the supers, a redheaded twig of a person, was stuck staring and being enveloped by its… strange mass.

Pyromancer straightened to a stand... only to stumble, then roll across the sand. He let out a garbled curse. This wind aided him, but it was a double-edged sword. A two hundred miles per hour death typhoon. He rolled and rolled, his midnight blue suit turned beige with layers of thick sand, until he let out a furious bellow, and blasted streams of flames from his palms. The fire burnt bright against the cold winds, melting the sand into patches of white-hot glass. Pyromancer flipped to his feet and steadied himself. He bent his knees into a crouch, keeping his centre of gravity low. He did not think this through.

Even with the flames holding his ground, the wind was too strong. His boots dug into the sand, pushing him further and further. He wouldn't last long like this.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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It continued to be a day of surprises. Chief among them, a Dragon?! One around his size, if not bigger. It pelted the Beast with a mystic flame, more violent than hellfire! Macroman assumed it was either summoned or shifted into by one of the many heroes present before monster. Perhaps the dragon would deliver enough force to break through the creature's nigh-instantaneously rejuvenating gelatinous hide! There were many other heroes fighting this beast as well on Atlas City's sandy shores, but he recognized sparse few. The one's he did transcended fame, such as The Alchemist. He'd thought she'd retired. Lone Star, no longer the loner it seemed and Captain Valor, leading the front lines as he would the troops in NAHLA.

But it wasn't the two chief heroes of America's presence that surprised him the most, but what they said;

This area is about to become ground zero for the response to this monster. You all need to evacuate the beach immediately. Those of you who wish to continue fighting, join us here on the boardwalk. We’re to set up a frontline here until Uncle Sam is able to arrive with the means to kill this thing completely.


A ground zero response?! What could that even mean? What could the military have for this Beast's that the greatest heroes in the country couldn't hope to stop? Macroman followed the others to the boardwalk, watching another super enact encase a part of the Beast's swarm of mist that descended towards the heroes.

He thought to all that had transpired before this moment. What was used against the beast thus far. What it's defenses were. There were once immortals that walked the stars and the planets inbetween. Servants of the Old gods and the New. But even they could fall. Evil always would.

"We need the wind!" he spoke, so all the heroes below him could hear, cosmic soundwaves, allowing him to speak without bursting the eardrums of the heroes of smaller stature. He didn't speak much in this form, but it seemed necessary in this case. "The wind to funnel the mist and the Alchemist to snare it! To keep it away from us and back towards the beast!"

Macroman had a plan...one he wasn't sure would work, but better that than waiting for the military to decimate half the city. And with another salvo in the form of an exploding truck being launched at the Beast, perhaps there was an opening.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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As the fighting progressed two of the US's greatest heroes joined the fray immediately rallying the heroes into a defensive line on the boardwalk and the monstrosity changed tactics to a more active one, it seemed like a good moment to press on. Devon was sure those heroes would have been properly briefed about what was going to be dropped upon the foe and what distance was appropriate for a defensive line, not to mention there seemed to be chaos nearing the boardwalk and he didn't have vision of it rendering him unable to help.

A plan surfaced trying to employ his newfound power to jump between the rooftops around him, it hadn't seemed like he was restricted to moving over the ground in his prior tests and triggering the power was becoming a bit more stable. Besides this was the perfect time to put the theory to the test, he was in his suit after all so even if he dropped from the roof to the ground it should matter that much. Taking a moment to ready himself mentally he took a deep breath before running to the edge and jumping, gravity took over and the sickening feeling of falling to ones death ran through his body as the smoke trails behind him grew and more of his body dissipated into the smoke. It had only been a second until his mind registered he was no longer falling, rather he felt more like he was floating. As his mind adjusted to this rather odd sensation the smoke began to move, consciously moving the smoke through the air was a rather odd sensation, it felt like whatever direction he focused his mind on his 'body' would move forward in that direction without his senses turning along into the direction as if his body had turned 90 degrees to the right without his head ever turning the slightest in that direction.

As much as he would have liked to explore these sensations and this power more, there simply wasn't any time, there was a giant sentient blob of acidic gelatin attacking the city after all. He turned his attention towards the boardwalk and moved in the direction staying near the rooftops while in his wispy new form afraid it might be undone at any moment. Though there were a few shaky moments where he could feel his form temporarily dissipating with no warning whatsoever, Devon managed to land himself on one of the rooftops adjacent to the boardwalk. From here he could easily see the monster and all he was spewing at the heroes on the boardwalk, the aggressive mist, the tendrils and it's minions. Also... Where did that dragon come from... Well at the very least it would be on their side for the moment seeing it was currently entangled in combat with the main body of the monster.

Devon slung the rifle onto his back and drew his pistols from the pockets within the trenchcoat, sheer firepower wouldn't solve this problem and that mist would be far safer to dispatch with cryogenics rather than turning it into a massive fireball with incendiary attacks, fuel air mixtures should never be underestimated after all. With the barriers and the wind managing to contain most of the mist Devon placed his attention on the clouds that managed to slip past these defenses and the tendrils that attempted to assail and entrap the heroes. Volleys of gunfire rung from the rooftop as clouds of mist turned into tiny crystals dropping to the ground among a mist of frozen compounds(mostly water and carbondioxide) sublimated out of the sky. As the foul green black crystals hit the ground and other few shots were fired at them until they were securely held under a thin layer of supercooled and partially liquefied air.

While he had been busy with the little bits that had escaped it seemed like a couple others had managed to create another temporary prison for the main quantity of the mist by trapping it in a massive spherical glass container consisting of some rather thick panes. If someone were to make a small hole and quickly patch it up after he reckoned the panes would be strong enough to survive the fireball that igniting all that mist would result in, but that would be a risky scenario if it went wrong lethal glass shards would be thrown everywhere so it would probably be best to not even suggest it to any of the others.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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The mist was quickly being disposed of, but there was no telling if the Beast could produce just as much of the mist as it had before. That's why they needed to act fast.

"Act fast. Fire lights the glass... " Macroman nodded at the display before him. " Then we return the mist to it's master... "

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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"Give me a moment," Sasha said, placing his hands upon Liv's new glass sculpture and concentrating. The heat spread upwards from his hands to his elbows, his hands glowing as they sunk into the giant piece of glass. The reflective surface rippled as its temperature rose, emitting a strange sound as the heat neared its melting point.

Stepping back, Sasha's form shifted again, his hands losing their heat as the Russian hero's bulk doubled, his black armored skin cracking to reveal red pulsing muscle underneath. With a horrendous roar, Sasha lifted the newly heated glass above his head.

"Where we putting this?" Sasha growled.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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The wind’s power relented, seemingly diverted to a massive blast of pure force that ripped through the Beast, a show of raw power that drew its ire. The fire fizzled from Pyromancer’s palms, and he straightened himself to see the star-made giant… talking? Somehow, he had neither died nor gone deaf from the sound yet. This city gets stranger everyday, he dismissed with a shrug.

Even stranger still, was when the skies rumbled once more. Not with thunder. Rather with the cry of a falling star, which doused the monster’s side with a peculiarly-coloured liquid. The handiwork of a mad scientist, no doubt. But was it the mad scientist he knew?

More and more was thrown at the beast; a glassy prison to trap the mist, with the straggling cloud turned to crystal shards.

"Act fast. Fire lights the glass... "

The giant spoke again. That caught Pyromancer’s attention immediately. He bowed his head, the light reflected upon his goggles. He sprinted across the sands, his arms held to the sides as flames burst alight and danced upon his open palms.

”Then we return the mist to it's master... "

One of the supers beat him to the punch, hauling red-hot glass above red-and-black, demonic shoulders. But fire was only half of his domain. Pyromancer skidded to a halt before the demon, keeping a close distance. Just in case. His palms enclosed into fists, and his flames scattered into dancing embers.

“We’re returning this?” He asked, glancing the giant man’s way. His voice dropped into a hissing whisper. “Let’s pay back with interest.”

With a wave of the hand, Pyromancer scattered his embers all around the glass. They danced over the structure, like fireflies. Tiny, very combustible fireflies. To demonstrate, Pyromancer looked straight at the demonic hero and gathered a small amount of embers over his offhand. With the snap of a finger, ignited them into a brief, yet loud snap. Like a firecracker.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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Shinigami held a hand out to Cobalt but suddenly she retracted it as the tingling in her body became pins and needles. Her lantern came off and her form reverted to its original state before another lantern took its place.

"SHINIGAMI WITCH FIRE, WITCH FIRE, W-W-WITCH FIRE!"

A burst of flames shot out towards the sky, incinerating the vines that had provided cover. The flames didn't recede however. They lowered but Shinigami still blazed brightly. She turned towards the glass weapon the other heroes had created and saw the flames Pyromancer had ignited. Without a word to Cobalt, she started running.

The Witchfinder's low throaty chuckle sounded in her ear but Shingami didn't stop. The glass was a good idea but it needed a good kick. She didn't know if any other hero had realized it yet but she didn't paused to check. Her steps took her to Macroman once more and as she approached, she suddenly had flames beneath her feet shooting her into the sky.

"Gonna borrow you for a bit~!" Shinigami shouted as she landed on Macroman's arm again, hoping he would understand if he hadn't heard her. It was the same routine as earlier except Shingami felt hotter, her flames still reaching towards the sky with burning tendrils. Once she reached his shoulder, she jumped.

Left foot extended, bright blue flames shot out of Shinigami's back that propelled her forward. Her foot hit the glass but it didn't shatter. Instead, it shot forward with increased momentum, directly towards the creature.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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It had been done! A shifting super mounted an assault against the Beast! A massive burning projectile was formed of the creatures own vile vapors! Encased in alchemic glass and wreathed in flame it was shot forth by others like a targeted missile! The dragon unleashed one other volley of fire as well before, well...

Erupting into a pile of corrosive sludge wasn't the first thing he expected, and while could do some damage to the Brady's spawn, it causes what he had hoped to avoid. Collateral damage to the beach. More humans dead. A needless loss of life and livelihood.

But there was no time to worry about that now. The sludge wouldn't be an issue in a bit anyway, hopefully. The makeshift missile had struck true! With that and the dragon's blast the creature would take some time regenerating. Now was their time to end this for good.

"Prepare everything you've got. Before it fully regenerates. Long range. Let's end this." he stated, his arms beginning to glow...

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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Bubble, crush, chuck, then repeat. The process happened multiple times every few seconds to the beasts offspring that charged into Alex’s range of focus. Block a minion from attacking a super, Think there name was Firefly, he was too focused on blasting the beast with lasers. Bubble said minion. Repeat.

Since the deadly mist had been dealt with and other supers started to assault the beast directly, Alex’s brain was almost in a state of autopilot. It felt like he had been crushing and defending against the beasts offspring for hours. He wasn’t used to using His powers at this pace for so long. A dull thrumming of a headache was starting to form in the back of his skull. Had to ignore it. He had been asked a few times by other nearby supers if he was doing ok. He had wordlessly nodded and continued on.

The dragon was gone now, melted away to leave behind corrosive black slime. Not helpful considering that it would have melted everyone on the boardwalk if it hadn’t been for Fortress doing her best to hold it off. Though it had cost her an arm in the end. Alex was quick to try and “plug” any of the holes in her protection as it flickered from the pain of her arm being corroded away.

Then she dropped her barrier seconds later.

”NO!!” Alex’s threw his hands outward as his body nearly burst with blue light. Layers of telekinetic fields shot out rapidly from him and slammed into the black slime Fortress had been holding back and continued to push out further. He wasn’t going to let some idiots choice to run away cost the lives of more supers that could help end this. Fortress was going to bail? Fine, he would be everyone’s shield.

The headache was getting a bit worse. He grit his teeth and expanded his field further and fortified it with more layers until he effectively had most of the boardwalk covered. A few of the costumes hero’s looked at him with both a sense of awe and concern. He shook his head. ”I’m ok, I have to be-“
Macroman’s commanding voice cut him off with orders for an all out attack on the wounded beast. Finally.
”You heard the man, let that heap of mold have it! You can attack through the barriers no problem, I’ll keep the defense up as long as I’m still conscious.” He hoped Jericho was doing ok out there, hell he hoped everyone still on the beach was still alive. He couldn’t do anything for them though, he had to focus and provide a bastion for everyone. Some supers that were either injured or taped out came running through the barrier to get to safety. There was little resistance as they walked through the hard light walls like it was air. He had to make openings a few times to let people in before most got the idea they didn’t have to wait on him to go through it.

Out of paranoia Alex continued to fortify and add small layers as every few seconds passed. A sinking feeling tugged at his mind that there was a chance this could in fact get worse. He hoped he was wrong.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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Pyromancer looked over his shoulder, where gooey chunks had splattered under another super’s might. A broad, statuesque man, to whom the Pyromancer nodded his thanks. Above, he saw the giant glass missile, sent forth by a waif of a woman, and Maeve’s superlaser, a majestic show of rage and power which rapidly deteriorated her form.

“Shit!” Pyromancer cried out, instinctively covering his face as the colossal dragon crumbled, no, melted into a flood of mud that darkened the skies. The Pyromancer shifted closer towards the broad-shouldered super, and under the protective barrier he had summoned. He looked up, his bright red goggles like wide, alarmed eyes.

”I’m ok, I have to be-“

He assured them. Pyromancer’s brows furrowed behind his mask. He could see the strain swiftly draining the man of his strength. Such heroic resolve. On any other occasion, he would dismiss such sentimentality. But today, it was exactly what they needed. The star-made giant’s voice reached his ears. He turned his eyes towards the burning, flayed beast. He would not let his chance go to waste. Pyromancer bent his knees and threw his hands to his sides. Flames came alight, from his palms and up his shoulders, like a cloak of fire and embers that boiled and rippled across the fabric and leather of his suit.

Pyromancer roared, a bellowing cry muffled by the filters of his mask. The flames in his hands bloated into giant, swirling fireballs, which he vollyed upwards, one after the other. They arced through the skies, then exploded upon impact with the Beast of Decay’s body. The fire-bending super then pulled back with a grunt, charged the embers in his left palm, and blasted forth...

FWOOOOOOOOSH!

...A stream of continuous fire. So bright, so hot, and with so much force, that his feet skidded back across the sand, embers scattering all around him and fading into the air. His black-gloved hand was white-hot and quivering, struggling to maintain the burning flame. A flame which flowed and flowed, three times as large and five times as long as the Pyromancer himself.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Sairyn Pendrake Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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"What strength of will!" Sasha called in admiration to Alex, his voice strong and confident. "Time to purge this beast from our waters."

Sasha's form shifted once again, his size increasing to a height of twelve feet as long black wings unfurled from his shoulders. His black armor emitted steam and heat as it seemed to take on the appearance of lava. Sasha's eyes seemed to turn to fire themselves, and embers swirled from his mouth as he breathed through long fangs. A crown of horns sprouted where his hair would normally be, and a tail, long and black, finished the transformation.

Rising into the air, Sasha's wings beat slow and hard, and his eyes fixed upon the sludge rising from the bay waters. "A prayer for you, unholy beast," Sasha spoke. "Я очищу твой яд в огне Рарога. Да обретешь ты покой." Sasha raised a hand and clenched his fist, as the waters of Atlas Bay ignited into flames, consuming the base of the beast and beginning to rise upwards.

Bonding together with the flame master's own powers, the heat from both Sasha and Zeke's powers could be felt by every super on the beach.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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The fire user and Sasha both contributed to the massive volley, soon to be joined by a volley of other heroes. And just as the Beast had begun to regenerate...another blast, keeping it barely unable to regen normally for just long enough! Klaus doing, no doubt! It was now or never. Atlas city's hopes tested on all of their shoulders!

Macroman locked his glowing arms together. Elysium......BEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAM!!!!!!!!!!

A massive beam shot forth from his arms, crackling with cosmic energy, it cut across the beach, searing through sludge and sand as it joined the other blasts in hitting it's target! The heroes gathered her on this very beach couldn't let this beast regenerates further!! From here on out to stop the regeneration, it would have to be pushed over it's limits as it disintegrated to the last cell! To it's very atoms!

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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As though his mind had been read others among the heroes had proceeded to set the acid cloud contained in the glass sphere on fire, Devon could only hope they had some sort of a plan to deal with the potential consequences of their actions. But right now it wasn't the right thing to focus his attention on and should the glass shards explode all over the heroes on the boardwalk, he would intervene at that time. His focus was on dealing with as much of the offspring under control harnessing cryogenic and incendiary bullets to that effect.

It wasn't until the dragon turned into a wave of corrosive goop that things well and truly went to hell, overwhelming one of the heroes keeping a barrier together to keep everyone safe. As she fled the scene with some nasty wounds another hero clearly struggling under the pressure of the task hurriedly erected barriers on the sections she had left exposed. Devon launched a volley of incendiary rounds into the black slime attempting to lighten the load on the hero holding back the slime, it appeared significantly more resilient against fire than the other foul slime creature of the beach, but even if only briefly it too was being consumed by the fire. Focusing on the areas where the slime looked the least dense he managed to cause a slight reduction of the profile touching the barriers, hopefully it would help the hero a bit.

The cosmic giant then sent out another order urging them to attack with all they had. Apparently attempting to push through the creatures regenerative properties. As much as he felt that it wouldn't be enough to destroy the creature, not helping with the offensive would just create a self-serving prediction. As such he turned his eyes upon the mutated gelatin gone rogue and unleashed a hail of bullets. Pulling the triggers of both guns like an tourette's patient, barely keeping the recoil from diverting his aim and lighting the creature up with bursts of flame one after another as the bullets weaved their way around the other heroes on scene and the various projectiles levied against the blob.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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Vic would've been fine on her knees letting her brain float out the back of the skull as it reeled from the reality that she had taken a second life. Turned out her body wasn't fine with letting the acidic wave of dragon sludge wash over her. She disappeared from the sand a second away from the darkness burying her. Vic came back into being, not on the boardwalk behind Alex's barrier, but a few hundred feet above it. From there she watched breathlessly as the Beast was torn into. A haunting, impossible silhouette writhing upon an ocean set on fire. Something about seeing the heights those flames reached, reminded her of what she'd come here to do - no, it gave her hope that they could actually do it.

Vic reached out her hands, flicking out her fingers like a conductor. Gaping holes began to blast through the Beast's slimy hide, one between those incomprehensible eyes, as the world's most powerful air cannon did her part.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Sairyn Pendrake Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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"Tch," Ion scoffed as a notification that he was no longer streaming popped up in his HUD. Normally a stream interruption would constitute a strategic retreat: Why do something heroic if his audience couldn't see? He couldn't really let up, however, with the flood of new minions clambering out of the water and his jet stream just barely keeping the mist at bay, Ion was clearly struggling to maintain both and dying was not on his to-do list. At least he was still recording. An edited video of the fight tied in with a memorial piece for Manhawk and a voice-over would rake in a few million hits for sure.

He lost his concentration, causing the jet-stream and the barrage of lightning both to stop suddenly as he was knocked tumbling by a blast of wind from behind. Ion managed to stabilize himself by wrapping his body in a charged bubble, only to find the beast's corrosive cloud bearing down on him. He flicked a charge in front of him, shaping and accelerating the current slipping around him into a wedge, splitting the cloud around him as he was enveloped. A burst of air cleared the ceiling of the cloud long enough for him to fly out of it up into the storm.

Ion had to catch his breath for a few moments before descending back down to hover over the boardwalk just as everyone was unleashing their strongest attacks. The swarm of smaller creatures was being systematically eradicated by sustained sniper fire from... somewhere, and the crushing blue barrier projections of the largest super on the boardwalk. Of course, he couldn't be left out of the scene, at least not while he was recording. With the crowd effectively under control he was free to assault the beast... He rose up high over the boardwalk to avoid catching up any friendlies in the backblast and stretched his hand out to the storm. A massive charge began building up over the beast's head until a crackling blue aura was visibly linking the beast and storm.

"FUSILLADE!" He commanded, and lightning rippled through the clouds from the edges of the storm and when it reached the center hundreds of bolts rained down on the beast, raking its flesh with electricity in a furious staccato beat. The sheer force rattled fillings and the thunder boomed over the boardwalk like artillery.


NAHLA HEADQUARTERS



"If you'll excuse me, I have actual work to do," puffed Sairyn with a note of exasperation. Dealing with officials always left him ruffled. He brought his Grimiore up and flipped to the rifle's section when he saw how effective Sheri was with her doubles and conjured another pair of coil rifles for her. A pair of new duplicates manifested to happily take up the cause, and Sairyn re-filled their ammunition to keep them in the fight.

The Grimiore snapped shut, and he set about re-loading the catapult with another acid charge. The crew on the boardwalk was really going all out, and it just wouldn't do to be stuck in a conversation with a smug Colonel when he should be contributing to the fight. He aimed carefully with the slate and the catapult boomed, rattling the platform as he bent down to secure his next round.

His first shot hit the beast squarely in the face, covering its entire front-side with the deadly acid. A group of additional shots exploded inside the holes created by Vicki's wind cannon, shortly after they were made to get the acid working from both sides. Sairyn set aside a few of the acid charges to help with the beach cleanup and loaded a cryo-charge into the catapult. Firing one off now while the beast was under assault by flames might be counter-productive so he held his shot and waited for an appropriate moment.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Cannonade Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Kiran Kingsley Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Sairyn Pendrake Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Niall Khadkani Character Portrait: Amelia Brunel
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Albert was impressed despite himself. The amount of destruction the other heroes had managed to scrape together and pile onto the beast of decay was actually inspiring. For a moment, he thought they might actually have won.

But the beast kept going.

"Listen, HQ, I have to get down there,"Albert said, pulling his plane's nose up and heading higher into the atmosphere. "That thing's still coming."

"The artillery is incoming, Backlash, stay put," Ivetta's voice, still calm but strained as the beast lurched up the beach.

Albert opened his mouth to protest but in that moment, the artillery appeared. The flying super could only stare at the oversized cannon that had flattened a section of housing, thankfully one that had been emptied for some time. The supers on the beach retreated. The cannon fired.

At this point, however, Albert wasn't convinced. He continued to climb, his knuckles white as he clenched the joystick. He'd been caught with his pants down with this thing. It wasn't something anyone could have predicted, but Albert felt like a failure anyway. There was no doubt in his mind that he could have destroyed this beast himself, but he would have had to know at least a day in advance in his current state. One day in advance, and he would have been able to vaporize the beast completely, and without the damage the cannon caused.

Below him, the beast took control of the artillery, and fired a shot into the Atlas City Reactor. Flipping his plane around, Albert pointed the nose of it straight at the cannon and accelerated. He was thirty thousand feet in the sky, higher than he'd ever fallen before. His plane would cover that distance in around 30 seconds. It was time to redeem himself, even if only a little bit, for his failure today.

The cannon fired thrice more as Albert dove, then fell silent as the beast reloaded the massive weapon. Albert's plane hit the cannon at over 600 miles per hour, and exploded, but it was Albert's strike just before he crashed that truly tore the cannon to pieces. For just a moment, Albert's punch contained a tiny fraction of the sun's power, and as Albert collided with the military's creation, that power cascaded through the entire system.

The cannon shuddered, sparked, then exploded from the inside, parts of it ripping off while others turned to molten flame and melted. The beast of decay's tendrils were turned to ash instantly, the heat and fire following the tendrils into the earth and burning them underground.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Sairyn Pendrake Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Amelia Brunel
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"Ugh," muttered Yue as the sounds of explosions and massive cannons rousted her awake. Her eyes fluttered open to a text from Sairyn on her HUD. Just a four-digit code. A wave of pins washed over her skin as she moved, causing her lip to twitch involuntarily as she pushed herself into a sitting position. She used the NAHLA network feed to quickly get caught up on the events of the past twenty minutes or so, and that feeling of unease stirred in her gut when she saw how the creature adapted.

"Whoa whoa whoa! You should NOT be moving!" Ichiro fussed, rushing to her side when he noticed her getting up and trying to force her back down onto the stretcher. Yue pushed him aside and got to her feet, pulling the IV from her arm as the suit unfurled back over her skin. She flexed her hands and shifted her weight from side to side experimentally.

"I have work to do," she replied grimly without meeting his eyes. Ichiro tried to stall her but she was gone in a flash of pink lightning, the back-blast nearly knocking him from his feet.

Yue's body screamed in protest at being put under stress again as she streaked through downtown away from the beach. She ignored it and made her way back to the NAHLA HQ building, not bothering with subtlety as she streaked straight past someone riding a bulky motorcycle and through the front door. Archer scarcely had time to blink before she was past him and in the stairwell, skidding to a halt inside the observation room of the training. The Luna Lightning suit collapsed back into its tiny disc, and she shoved it hastily into a pocket in case she needed it later and punched in the code she'd received into a large safe.

It chirped happily and swung the door open to reveal the carbon scored tungsten plates of her Silver Fang armor. Yue was pulling the armored gauntlets over her hands and flexing her fingers against the familiar weight when she felt the building shudder as the upper floor sloughed off and collapsed onto the concrete outside. Her heart dropped into her stomach as she scrambled to a terminal to check the NAHLA network for the report. Thankfully the building was largely evacuated and there didn't appear to be anyone on the floor that was struck.

She inhaled, clenching a fist.

The beast had directly assaulted her home.

Yue's eyes burned like crimson embers as she pulled the iconic knight motif helmet over her head, and the suit hummed quietly to life. It was absolutely sluggish compared to how she could move in the Luna Lightning suit, but she streaked out of the NAHLA building via one of the underground exits chased by bolts of crimson. As she approached the boardwalk, a pair of careful leaps took her to the rooftops where she landed heavily on a building adjacent to Devon. She was only there a moment: a tangible pause in her momentum like a breath while her body coiled up. There was an explosive release as she launched from the roof in a tall arc. The force rippled through the building and shook the dust out of the stucco, rattling all the windows following the dull *crump* of her breaking the sound barrier.

Something struck the cannon, causing it to explode brilliantly as she reached the apex of her arc, though she didn’t see what. The beast had been mid-stride and was knocked noticeably off balance as she hurtled down, the crimson trail of light which had been chasing her suddenly exploding brilliantly from her body as though she’d erupted into hellfire. A mountain of smoldering veins erupted from the ground to try and intercept her, followed by the remaining minions of decay… and then she impacted.

Everything on the boardwalk bounced, like the ground suddenly dropped several inches out from under everyone. A massive wave of force liquefied the veins and creatures at the point of impact and heaved the earth upwards as it ripped through the Army staging zone in a cone. The wet slap it made as it impacted the beast reverberated through the boardwalk like thunder, and its flesh writhed like a disturbed Jell-O mold. The beast’s advance was halted, and it teetered unsteadily, retreating back one single step to keep itself upright.

Silver fang rose from the clearing dust, the edges of the tungsten armor plating glowing orange from heat and waves of crimson energy cascading off of her like an uncontrolled flame. The air practically vibrated with pressure, and several soldiers squinted like she was too bright to look at. One collapsed to the ground foaming at the mouth and was hauled away by his squad mates. She didn’t hesitate, using the small window of opportunity she’d opened to leap into the chaos and start hauling soldiers from the staging area four at a time, one casually under each arm like luggage and one slung over each shoulder.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Amelia Brunel
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Once all the smoke cleared and the military's wonder weapon was spent the monster still stood, largely destroyed but given how it had captured the weapon for itself it was showing no signs of going down. Well done, you've made it more dangerous That however didn't mean he was going to stop, Devon sure as hell wasn't going to let that thing roam the streets just because those military baboons fucked up. That being said his options of helping were rather limited, he doubted that he could destroy that cannon and intercepting those shots with projectiles of his own wasn't going to happen they were just too fast.

However what he could do was crystal clear, protect the people on the ground from those tentacles and strike back hard against them. Cryogenics appeared to have been quite successful against the creature so far and it would be a much quicker reaction rather than having to wait for the flames to slowly eat away at the tentacles. With that choice out of the way wild sprays of shot filled the air finding their ways to the whipping tentacles and freezing them into gelatin icicles. As he was doing so though another hero landed on a building nearby, just long enough for him to catch a glimpse of the hero. Armor glowing orange radiating heat like a crucible and they seemed to be followed by some some crimson light.

Aggravation creeping it's way through his skin with each shot from the beasts cannon, he absolutely hated the fact that he couldn't do anything against that... If only he himself was fast enough to react against those shots or he had enough firepower to destroy the cannon outright. When an explosion rocked the monster though he looked on with an almost malignant glee at the sight of that cannon destroyed beyond repair. Someone had done something quite nice, and alleviated that problem for them all. Hopefully though it wasn't going to cost them their life. Devon looked for whomever could have been the one to cause the explosion, identifying one person dangerously near the creature tentacles already inbound to them. Without a second thought his aim trained on the tentacles trailing behind the hero and unleashed enough shots to freeze them to the core and then some.

In the meantime he had noticed that the hero who had made their late entry to the battlefield was picking up soldiers and getting them out of their staging area. While at first glance it didn't have that much grace to it, the fact that she could run around with four soldiers like that showed quite a lot of technical experience... Perhaps when this all was over she could teach him her techniques, while Devon knew he would never be able to carry the weight of four fully packed soldiers it might be useful anyways... As soon as he noticed his attention on the battlefield had lapsed he turned his full attention back to firing at the tentacles and any minions that dared to show their faces, making a mental note to keep the path clear for the manhandler so she could help as many as possible without having to tangle with the slime. Before he could think about bettering his rescue techniques they would first have to make sure there is still a city left by the end of this.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Amelia Brunel
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Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Sheri Galloway Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Vicki Vortex Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Klaus Zeit Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Albrecht von Richthofen Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Amelia Brunel
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He had been dragged back away from the boardwalk, Jericho doing their best to move Alex's quarter ton body as more of the supers attempted to fall back. Alex's own armor flickered again but the defenses he had erected held. There still needed to be cover for everyone and his fields showed no sign of deteriorating from being in contact with the beasts offspring or death mist. While the protection was helpful, it didn't do much to make Alex feel like he was helping deal with the threat. The fact that the beast was somehow still alive was infuriating. If all of that damage barely slowed the thing down then what would? The beast took enough power to level a mountain and refused to die. Could he contain something like that now that it was diminished? Wouldn't be a good idea to find out if it was a capable brute by breaking through barriers.

Alex snapped into action when the veins began erupting around the boardwalk. the walls at the edge of the boardwalk and ceiling all dissipated at once. With a frustrated grunt followed by a hiss of pain caused by another headache spike, Alex quickly formed new fortifications. Practically making bunkers at this point that were protected even from bellow. the image of Jericho being scared in enclosed spaces kept Alex from boxing all the supers in on reflex, opting to instead leave openings heading away from the beach if others chose to flee. Many continued to try attacking the beast after regaining their barrings, their attacks phasing through the barriers as they had before, others that could went to try and deal with the veins. He had to stay focused and watch, be ready to change his defenses at a moments notice.

Moments later the artillery finally dropped. Alex really wished he had his helmet as he turned away on reflex as the shells went off. Taking a grenade to the face in the past had been worse then the sound that reached his ears from the bombardment, heck there wasn't even any ringing. But that wasn't enough it seems cause when he turned to look back towards the beast there was now the biggest cannon Alex had ever seen with its guns all pointed at the nasty thing.

Everyone seemed to cover their ears on instinct just before it had the chance to fire, Jericho had the luxury oh just shifting to have no ears. Lucky.

His eyes snapped open and blinked rapidly. huh, when had he shut them? Alex could barely hear anything over the ringing in his ears right now. He didn't know when he had dropped to his knees either. A glance around showed that most of the other hero's and villain's present were in their won various stages of being disoriented. God that thing was way too loud. Had that done it? Was the beast dead?

No. Of course not. It just decided to take the cannon that had been used to blast away two thirds of its visible mass and fuse it to the top of what remand of its body. The thing had a gun now, because of course it did! Alex balled his fists and shook a little from the anger he was feeling now. If there was a sense of hopelessness hanging in the air, he wasn't feeling it. all of these supers and nearly given everything they had, some even their lives, and it wasn't enough. The anger finally got to him and he couldn't help but bellow out with all the hate and venom he had. "WHAT THE HELL IS IT GOING TO TAKE TO KILL THIS GOD DAMN PILE OF ROT AND MOLD!?!" Even now, His barriers remand up as some of the lesser known supers began to loose hope against this seemingly worsening impossible situation. Others though continued to fight.

Alex glared up at the beast, wishing nothing more but to destroy the abomination himself at this point. The question was how?

Setting

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Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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The Beast was down, finally, despite the American military’s… flaccid endeavor. Maeve had no doubt this wouldn’t be the end of it; it had managed to stitch itself back together plenty of times already, and she had the sinking sensation that this wasn’t even its true body, just another puppet like the little ones. A man in black combat armor was attempting to freeze the corrosive tide before it could flood the docks, and as much as she wanted to see how far this fight could really go, she knew when to call it quits; she was still drained from her transformation, and the firearms the Shape’s men were using wouldn’t do shite against that thing if it got back up. Better to make a tactical retreat for now and reassess.

”Begging your pardon,” Maeve grunted, hauling Maxwell up onto her back before grabbing two of his men, holding one under each arm. She tilted her chin at the other goons to scatter, stopping mid-gesture when she spotted someone familiar down the boardwalk. Another of the Shape’s hired guns, this one with actual powers. Pyre, his name was, maybe? She clicked her tongue and tossed one of the men under her arms to his companions, who nearly stumbled back into the sludge under the impact of his weight.

Maeve crossed half the length of the boardwalk in a single stride, moving quickly to her new companion and getting his attention with a hand on his shoulder. ”Time to get a move on.”

She lifted him over her shoulder next to the Shape before instructing the three of her passengers to clench their teeth, then launched herself into the air like a rocket, soaring over the crumbling shops of the boardwalk before coming down some two or three blocks away. Maeve set Pyre and the Shape down gently enough, and dropped the henchman like a sack before leaping back over to the beach to continue ferrying the rest of the Shapeless gang away from the area.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Cannonade Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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It all happened so fast, one after another. The military’s interference. The beast’s appropriation of their weapon. And that red comet, pulverising the creature in one fell swoop. Pyromancer watched this all from the boardwalk, his ears ringing in a world overloaded with sound. He looked up, seeing a vague, humanoid form amidst the walls of rising water.

Pyromancer was frozen in place. Water, all over the horizon, rising to blot out the skies. He had seen so many wild sights since he’d arrived in this bizarre city. But amidst the citadels of steel, the supers who lived and fought in it, and even the horrifying abominations of today… nothing had stirred something so visceral within him as the waters which flowed so abundantly by the borders.

Water. Such a sacred thing. Taken for granted by the inhabitants of these first world countries. Easily acquired, wasted without care. He never forgot the days when he went for those long marches. He hadn’t had his powers then. How his throat burned, how his head screamed at him, begged him, for the slightest drop. He remembered begging, out loud. To the man walking ahead of the children. And he remembered the rifle butt, swung across his head. White filled his vision. Pain seared across his face. Hot pain and cold, fresh blood.

Fresh.

Cold.

Like water…

There was so much of it. It scared him.

”Time to get a move on.”

A woman’s voice interrupted his thoughts. European. Scottish? No. Irish.

Her shadow fell over him, darker than even the tidal wave.

In the blink of an eye, he was high in the sky - higher than humanly possible. Or safe. He clung tight to Maeve with both hands, his fabric suit shaking against the wind.

Thud.

And before he finished thinking, they were back on the ground. Back and safe. He turned towards the towering woman and nodded his thanks. ”Serpent. Owe you one.” Pyromancer relaxed his hands, and his embers faded immediately. ”Treat you to lunch later.” He turned towards the Shape, whose emotions were masked by the cosmos swirling upon his mask. ”Total shitshow. Heroes got here too fast. Barely anyone left to save.” He clenched his fists, and his emotionless tone lowered into a growl. ”Still so many dead. Excessive. Unnecessary…”

Pyromancer glanced over his shoulder, towards Maeve’s departing form,and beyond that, the decay and ruin pasted over the horizon. ”Anyway. Dregs everywhere. Plenty for the Doc’s research.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Henry Stewart Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker Character Portrait: Amelia Brunel
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"Ah, I saw some cool heroes too!" Shinigami chimed in as she followed behind them. "There was this girl with white hair who I saw carrying two people away from the battle. Speed and strength is also essential in times of crisis after all. That fire user too, who helped with our glass, and that hero who also made the glass! I think they'd be great to work with like we did earlier."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape) Character Portrait: Richard Mackenzie (The White Death) Character Portrait: Sasha Belov Character Portrait: Yue Bayushi Character Portrait: Cannonade Character Portrait: Akiko Bong Character Portrait: Maeve Butler Character Portrait: Liz Baker Character Portrait: Sairyn Pendrake Character Portrait: Ezekiel "Zeke" Walker
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March 12th, 2045, 10:03am: Atlas City, North Carolina, USA

Day 2


The sound of ringing began to slowly fade, finding itself replaced by the soft, lapping sound of water caressing the shores. Richard opened his eyes slowly, taking note of the fact he was face down on sand. He slowly picked himself up, taking a look around him to see what had happened. The Beast was gone, or at least nearly so. Only a few scraps of its rotten flesh, the dark colored, fleshy veins, and patches of mold remained. Out at sea, blue walls of light began to fade, as water receded back, settling down from a great disruption. His whole body vibrated, his shoulders felt tingly, his stomach emptied and hollowed. Richard was alive, but felt as though he'd just been passed over by the specter of Hell.


He heard coughing from next to him, and turned in time to see the man in tweed sitting on the sands, knees tucked in to his chest, arms wrapped around them. His legs were both bleached white bones, all the flesh gone, and the decay even starting to eat away at his skeleton. Richard felt sick to his stomach seeing this, had to hold back the begging instinct to cry. "You're... Alive. What... What happens next?" Richard asked shakily.



The man's breaths were heavy, pained, and becoming much fewer. “For you? Well I hope you'll take my advice. Tell everyone what I told you, whoever can help you face this crisis. I tell you know, whatever it is we faced here today, all things in existence... They're all in danger. To fight this menace, what lurks in the dark... It will take every ounce of effort the universe has to fight back.” The man in tweed coughed more, hacking up yet more blood as he slowly released his arms, starting to lay back in the sand, face towards the sky.


"And you?" Richard asked anxiously.


The man sighed and nodded. “I already told you. I'm going to die. Right here. Please don't close my eyes, I don't want to see any more darkness. I want some kind of sky to be the last thing my sight tastes before the next life takes me.”


Richard stood motionless a moment, simply watching the man in Tweed lay there. A few minutes passed, some pained, forced breaths. Finally, the last breath was exhaled, the chest stopped moving, and his eyes seemed to glaze over. Richard was about to leave, but a noise and motion behind him alerted him. He turned around and looked on as terror filled him once more.


The Beast's remains were moving once again. A small pile of rotten, fetid flesh with a few veins and tentacles writhing about it. That strange, dark, unnatural mass that tried to pass for its eyes, stared at Richard with intensity. He could feel something wrong with it, so wrong that nothing on Earth could compare to it. It sat there, watching.


"I think we're alone now......" The sound was faint and crackly as it emanated from the Beast.


"This is Doctor Heather Wright again. I don't know what this thing is but... The horrors... The horrors are unimaginable... I don't know what we're going to do..." These words of the strange woman also emanated, softly, faintly, before all sound from the Beast dissipated.


Blink. Blink. Blink. The eyes of the Beast, that strange dark aura, had vanished. Richard couldn't tell if it had been steadily disappearing over time, or if it was an instant thing, but it was gone now, without a single trace. The body of the Beast fell limp, all life, movement, energy completely gone from it, even the Offspring were all either dead, or fell to the ground lifelessly. Whatever had been left of the Beast was gone.


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As The Shape touched down gently on solid ground again, he turned to Maeve, giving a firm nod of approval. "Thank you Maeve. You're proving to be more effective by the second. I approve of that." She had left to continue ferrying his men and women to safety, Pyro's words drew Maxwell's attention to the fire wielder, who had proven to be quite useful as well, if a bit unconventional.


"I expect the monster had a different opinion from you. Many died who didn't have to, true, but many more have been saved. Of course, we're trying to speculate on the motives of a 300 foot tall swamp thing, so it's hard to totally empathize." He chuckled slightly, crossing his arms as he gazed out to the waters of the Atlantic, beginning to steady themselves once more, but still polluted with the mess of viscera that had entered them.


"But yes, Kiran will have lots of materials to work with it seems, we'll need to act fast though before the military-" Maxwell's words were cut off. He heard something in the distance approaching. Fast. It was coming from behind them, from somewhere further inland. As The Shape turned to look at what was going on, he finally caught a glimpse.



Seven jet black, VTOL helicopters, though it appeared where the rotor blades would have been, they had opted instead for jets. The military had sent in back up. No... No that didn't make sense. In the distance one could see small plumes of smoke and the faint orange glow of fire. The helicopters passed overhead, coming down to hover over the beach.


Over the Corpse of the Beast.


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As the helicopters hovered over the beach, a group of twenty soldiers clad entirely in black descended by rappelling. Before anyone on or near the beach could react, a flurry of rockets were sent sailing from the helicopters, directly at the canon base where the military had been scrambling about. Explosions erupted and tore through the unprepared men and women. Dozens were killed, others (the lucky ones) sent flying back.


While that onslaught ensued, the soldiers on the ground quickly went about securing a small area around the remains of the beast. The majority of them took up places in a semi-circle, guarding from any attacks on foot from the city, while the others quickly filled jars, test tubes, and syringes with whatever they could find and take from the Beast. It even appeared they managed to find a few samples of the black ichor that had rained down from the dragon earlier.


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Richard dropped to the ground when the new arrivals showed up. He was afraid the military might get more involved, start arresting illegal supers perhaps, but clearly these people weren't here on the behalf of Uncle Sam. In fact, he doubted they were here on the behalf of any nation. There gear was completely clear of any distinct features, save for one.


On their shoulders, where typically a flag patch would be located, was a simple black rectangle. Stitched onto it was a simple, distinct, white outline of a square.


The fear of Hell and Death flooded through Richard again, but he dared not move. He wanted so desperately to do something, but what could he do? They had more ability to kill than he did, or potentially anyone else on the beach. A few supers bravely tried to approach the gun men, to put a stop to them, but they were responded to with gunfire and strange electrical beams. The heroes who weren't stopped by the bullets were stopped by those beams, their powers seeming to 'flicker' and stop working properly. The bullets worked much better after that.


What was the Square all about? Was this some kind of terrorist group? Some evil super organization? What was going on, and how did they manage to scramble here so fast? All questsions Richard wasn't getting an answer to. The soldiers finished up, tying their samples up to ropes that quickly disappeared into the helicopters above, followed by the soldiers, going only a few at a time. As each of them disappeared into their respective VTOL's, the remaining ones ensured that the area remained secure and that no other threats tried to take them out.


Of course no one else did. The whole affair had started and ended in the span of ten minutes or less. And when the last soldier disappeared into the door's of their VTOL, all seven dispersed and sped away from the scene on the beach, heading back inland, from where they came from, disappearing into the distance somewhere over American soil.



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March 12th, 2045, 10:13am: Atlas City, North Carolina, USA


A mug was heard shattering in the evacuation tent the Colonel had taken to using, pieces scattered across the tabletop he'd smashed it against. He was practically screaming into a radio mic. "Why did the airforce not shoot those things down! Where were our jets! How did this not get detected!"


The voice from the other end of the line came through more meekly than the Colonel's. "Sir, we DID scramble the jets. We just barely got them up in time after eye witnesses reported it to the base. They didn't show up on radar! But even still, we sent five jets after them, and every single one was shot down! Five pilots gave their lives and died to who knows who! We're completely in the dark here!"


The Colonel snarled in absolute, vile contempt. "Apparently every other American alive today is too!" He shouted slamming the mic back into place on a radio. He collapsed into a chair, pressing his fingers to his temples and forehead, pressing hard as he attempted to rub some kind of sense into his own mind. Finally, he turned to look at Sairyn, whom had taken to busying himself with Sairyn things.


"Pendrake," the colonel said with a calmness utterly opposite to his behavior moments before. "Since this has been such a fabulous mess, we may as well head out now. Other brass are going to be coming in to handle this very quickly. You ready to come with me for that talk?" He finished in an entirely neutral tone.


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With the VTOL's now gone, Richard unsteadily, for the second time in such a short amount of it, stood back up from the sand. His body was filled with even more vibration as he attempted to cope with everything. The Beast. The man in tweed. The VTOL assault. All the explosions, death, and carnage. He'd compare it to a war, but this seemed like something entirely different, entirely alien to him.


With a slight sway of unbalance, Richard slowly walked his way back up the beach, taking a moment to cast a long gaze at the man in tweed, resting peacefully on the sands, eyes still cast up at the sky. Richard felt the sprinkling of rain pattering down on him, finally taking notice of it. It had a somewhat calming effect, as much as was possible given the circumstances. He continued his walk back towards the boardwalk.


It wasn't long before he noticed the familiar figures he'd come to know since yesterday, and a new one it seemed as well? "Crazy day, huh?" He muttered to them as he kept walking just past and behind the group, to where his SUV sat, tailgate still down. Richard sat down on the gate, pulled his mask off, and sank his head into his hands.


At this rate, he'd lost the sensation to be worried about people seeing his face.