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Project Oddity

Capetown, Texas

a part of Project Oddity, by NethanielShade.

Welcome to Capetown, Texas, the nation's 5th in population density of parahumans to humans!

NethanielShade holds sovereignty over Capetown, Texas, giving them the ability to make limited changes.
2,482 readers have been here.

Capetown, Texas

Welcome to Capetown, Texas, the nation's 5th in population density of parahumans to humans!

Minimap

Capetown, Texas is a part of Project Oddity.


Setting

In 1979, the first parahuman, a human with "super powers", appeared. It is widely believed that they did not come out of hiding, but simply started existing then. Today, roughly 1 in 7,000 people on the planet are a "parahuman." Capetown, Texas, is the nation's 5th in population density of parahumans, these super-powered individuals, to unpowered humans.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Teen Heroes of America (THA) Character Portrait: Heroes League of America

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With a yawn Devon walked into the kitchen to make a quick breakfast. Just a simple sandwich with left over leafy greens, cheese and ham was the only thing he had the motivation to make at that point. With his sandwich and a glass of milk he sat down in front of his pc screen, his eyes pouring over the news as he took a bit of his sandwich. The situation at the bank had been a confusing mess as far as the news articles went, so much so that it swamped the events he took part in. Only a small article was spent on the blackout and the duststorm, not even a mention of the happenings at the adept mage hq. Probably for the best, they weren't a noteworthy faction within the city and news coverage would only strengthen the anti-cape factions within the city.

His attention was then ripped away from the news as he could heard the air raid sirens starting up their wailing sound and his phone blaring. He jumped up from his desk and hurried his ass to the closet that hid his gear. He'd swear he had never changed into his costume as fast as in that instant. There was no time for secrecy at this point so without a second thought he burst through his front door barely taking the time to lock it behind him. Most of his neighbors were also in the midst of evacuating the building, but with a very different destination in mind.

As he hit the streets his radio flooded with chatter over the emergency channels, he promptly turned it off. He looked at the sky trying to find any clues it might be Dragon that was attacking, but there wasn't even the slightest breeze in the air. "If it was Leviathan they wouldn't send the emergency messages all the way here, so it can't be him. Dragon, well we'd have known an hour or two in advance which would have allowed for a more controlled evacuation. Let's hope I'm wrong, but it seems it's that bastard." Devon thought as he went over the options prompting him to call a friend as he made his way in the direction of the HLA building. "I don't have time for this I need to evacuate." "Is the hoverbike operational? I might need it for this." A sigh sounded from the other side of the line before the voice responded. "Kinda, I don't have the time to be here in person so I'll leave the keys to the warehouse under the flowerpot, the 100 pound one, and explain the specifics over the phone." "That'll be plenty. Thank you." "It uses a magnetic repulsor field to levitate and propel itself, which means it stops functioning properly if it's more than 300 feet off the ground. Currently it's top speed is limited to about 90 miles per hour, I couldn't get it higher without causing destabilization occurring in the field. Similarly to prevent destabilization it can't pull more than 2.1 g's in any direction, including accelerating. Other than that it pretty much handles like a normal motorcycle with the added bonus of being able to ride it upside down without fear of falling off." "So, no sharp turns at speed and no transatlantic flights. How much do I owe you for all this?" "About three grand, two and a half and a I'll even throwing in a free tune up if you manage to keep my workshop intact. I'll send you the bill... Assuming we survive this." "You know I don't have a say in that." "Let's just call it a gamble. Anyways good luck out there, Greasemonkey out." "Good luck to you too."




Devon tipped the giant flowerpot and quickly snagged the keys from under it. Once inside he took a moment to look around and figure out where his bike was hidden, it had been parked right next to one of the large gates to the side of the building. The workshop was filled to the brim with bought tinker made parts and the projects he'd produced from them. As Greasemonkey had once explained to him he couldn't create the physics defying creations like the other tinkers, but his power allowed him to engineer around these creations and see their potential uses, even if they seem completely useless to their creators. Another part was the ability to maintain and repair any tinker made creations, well perhaps not Suit's, but he'd never get that chance. All of this led to him having a business in buying up tinker creations and devices to serve as parts in his projects.

It didn't take long before he had made his way through the maze of machinations to his bike. He opened the gate and with a slight feeling of awe he looked at the bike as the sunlight struck it's shiny black and red panels for the first time since it's transformation. Devon moved the bike out of the gate and locked the place back up, putting the keys back where he had found them. With a whirr the engine inside the hoverbike came to life as the key was turned and not a moment later it flew up a few feet freeing the tires from the ground. He gave a small bit of throttle to feel out the bike and did some practice rounds through the open air above the workshop, finally giving it the all clear and making his way to the HLA building.




As he flew over the crowds gathering at the HLA headquarters he looked in amazement at all the people gathered there. He had seen it a few times before and it had looked almost surreal to see that many gathered, including those who'd normal hide or fight them, but it never ceased to amaze to see such a sight let alone from the sky.

However Devon quickly spotted a problem, how the hell could he land with people moving around all over the place. He quickly ditched the idea of landing on the ground and settled for one of the low roofs of the building. After landing he jumped through an open window and worked his way down and out of the building. Outside he noticed a couple of the HLA and THA members huddled together with a mix of excitement, fear and general tension visible on the exposed parts of their faces. "Yo, new wheels?" Red Jet asked jokingly, probably just trying to break the tension. "It's got one hell of a mortgage on it, but it definitely beats traffic." Devon responded in the same joking fashion.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush)

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#, as written by Tanman
◄:Terry ‘Tess’ Farina:►
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The school day had started like any other. Or at least, it started like it had for the past few days. It was becoming a recurring theme that Terry’s encounters with capes and dangers was a point of discussion amongst her friends, with Amy and Glen eager to get all the details of who she’d seen, what had happened, all of it. Marcy simply made comment that she was glad Tess was okay, seemingly disinterested with what Tess recounted of ‘Whiteout’ and her second encounter with Wendigo. Still, it made for an impressive tale that she’d managed to somewhat help in halting Wendigo’s robbery. At least, that was what the media had portrayed it as – Tess had her other suspicions, but lacked any idea why Wendigo would simply make a scene like that. Maybe he just liked attention?

Regardless, she made her farewells to Glen and Amy, and instead moved to attend her Parahuman ethics class with Marcy. Honestly, there wasn’t a lot to tell there either. After their essay submission, things were a bit more lax with a simple lecture about the various treaties involved in Abhorrent attacks; as well as discussion around mandatory conscription of known capes into defence and the like. It was an intriguing discussion, one she felt should be up to the individual. Not everyone could or should risk their lives for something like that. Even if she wanted to, Tess wasn’t sure she had the courage for doing something so… Martyr-like? She hoped she never had to find out. Every time she’d been faced with trouble in the past couple of days, she’d left it to someone else or thought about her own sake first. Could she really set that aside and join a cause like that? All she’d managed as a ‘hero’ was some minor things, but… She did want to make a difference. She just didn’t really know how to start. Or rather… She didn’t want to give up what she had for it.

It was at that point that a sudden movement and noise at her side made her jump out of her thoughts, Marcy having sat up from her chair and looking out the window past Tess. Her expression was… Terry hadn’t seen Marcy show much of any emotion, but this… That was fear. “Marcy, what-“ Tess started to ask at the same time as the professor began asking if she had a question, but both were silenced by a sound of dread. That winding and rising whir that spelled only one thing. At the same time, everyone’s phones came to life with screeches of static, confirming their worst fears. Emergency signals. This wasn’t a drill or some test: it was real. An attack. They were here. An abhorrent was in Capetown. Things immediately erupted into chaos, students clambering from their seats, grabbing their stuff, trying desperately to use their phones and contact love ones, all the while the professor began calling over the top for order and a calm and orderly evacuation towards the nearest shelter. Tess remained frozen in her seat for a moment, before she felt a firm grip on her wrist yanking her to her feet.

“We need to go.” Marcy stated, eyes darting about the room for a moment before she began dragging Tess with her, heading out the door and into the hall. The sea of students was suffocating as people pushed and shoved about the crowd, all jostling towards the stairs and exits to the building. Panic was setting in, but for the most part, the faculty were keeping things pretty under control. Well, the ones that weren’t screaming and forcing their way out themselves. Moving with the flow of the crowd, Tess felt herself being wrenched about, but the whole time, Marcy maintained a firm grip on her hand, guiding her through the crowds with serious determination. It was amazing how different this side of her was to what Terry knew of her.

Breaking out into the courtyard, Tess felt herself yanked to the side as Marcy dragged her away from the doorways and against the building wall, giving the two some breathing space as the crowd of people continued forward in the evacuation. Slowly, Marcy released her grip on Tess, turning to face her. “You can get us out of here, right?” Marcy stated, looking directly at Tess. Blinking a bit in surprise, Terry responded in the first way that came to mind. “Well yeah, we just have to follow everyone to the shelters and-“ Tess was cut off by Marcy dragging her again, this time, further perpendicular to the crowd. “That’s not what I meant, Tess. I know about you.” Marcy glanced back to Tess over her shoulder, reading her expression. Seeing the confusion on her face, she sighed and continued. “I’ve seen your powers, Tess. I’ve known practically since I met you.”

Tess’ eyes widened in surprise, and immediately her mouth started speaking before her brain could catch up. “You what? I mean how-when?” The stammering continued as they pushed their way into the girl’s bathroom, Marcy releasing her grip on Terry once more now that they had some more privacy. Shutting her eyes a moment, Marcy was silent for a brief while, before turning back to Tess to speak. “I have abilities too, but they’re not much good in a situation like this. And you know as well as I do that the shelter’s do jack shit against any Abhorrent. No, we need to get the hell out of the city, as far away as we can.” Marcy paused, shutting her eyes again before speaking. Tess began to wonder what she was doing when she did that. “You can make those portal things, right? I know where that thing is coming from, and so long as we head in the opposite direction, we’ll be safe. Then, when it’s all cleared up, we come back to the city, slip in amongst the survivors and no one’s the wiser. You keep your secret, I keep mine, and neither of us dies in some pointless fight.”

Terry couldn’t believe what she was hearing. Part of her was still struggling to take it all in and process the revelations in the past few minutes. She knew one thing though. “This isn’t pointless. Someone has to try and stop those things or-“

“You can’t kill an Abhorrent. Neither can I. No one can. Sure, the big guns will drive them off, but not before people die. And I’m not an idiot like the rest of them, I don’t wanna die. Call me a coward if you want, but I’m just being realistic here. Just because we have powers doesn’t mean we have to use them on some big noble bullshit Tess. Someone else can deal with that crap. Now, if you’re done having your crisis of conscience, can we please get going?” Marcy sounded exasperated at this point, still glancing away every now and then as if diverting her attention to something else. Now wasn’t the time to ask questions about that though.

“Marcy, we can’t just abandon everyone. What about Glen and Amy? What about our families?” Tess suddenly felt her heart wrench as she thought about her mother and father at work, deep in the thick of the city. They’d be right in the middle of everything. “We don’t have to fight the thing, but we can help with evacuating and-“

Marcy sneered, turning her focus back to Tess. “Yeah, like you’ve been helping so far. I saw those thugs that chased you. I saw you at the Sandwich store. I even saw you at the bank. Tess, you’re not some hero, it’s painfully obvious that, like me, you’d rather look after yourself. You don’t need to prove yourself to me or bluff bravado. It’s just us, and no one will know. So let’s go.” Gesturing back outside, Marcy began to lead the way, seemingly thinking the discussion was over. Tess wasn’t about to let that be the last words however. Grabbing hold of Marcy’s hand, she stopped her.

“You’re right that I’m not a hero, but I’m not just going to run from this. You can go if you want Marcy, I’m not stopping you, but I’m staying and doing what I can. I’m not leaving people behind again.” Determined, Tess released Marcy’s arm and, in one swift flash of light, changed into Hush. Marcy stared at her a moment longer before looking away bitterly. “I needed you to get me out of here. If you’re staying then I’m stuck staying. And at this point I won’t get to a shelter before it seals.” Twisting her face into a grimace, Marcy gave a groan of annoyance. “Fine. I’m coming with you. At least if I’m near the idiots risking their lives I might be able to use their sacrifices to get clear.”

“Please don’t talk about people like that.” Hush replied sternly as she stepped outside, looking out across the horizon towards the HLA headquarters. Shutting her eyes and focusing, she extended out her arm, a beam of light sprouting forth before solidifying into a blade. Drawing a quarter circle with the blade and pointing it to the sky Tess took a deep breath as she concentrated. She’d been past the HLA plenty of times before. She knew where it was. She knew the area around it. She just needed to focus. Slashing the blade down swiftly, a blue rip in the air formed, glowing bright with light. “This should take us to the meeting point. But I’ve never had anyone else go through this with me… Are you sure you want to try this?” Hush asked, looking back to Marcy.

“Oh, so now you decide to warn me?” The girl huffed, shaking her head as she moved up towards the glowing gateway. “Guess I should be glad that this isn’t all of me if it does go wrong…” Marcy muttered, moving back over to Hush and holding on to her over her shoulders. “Alright, I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.”

Nodding to her friend, Hush moved forward and stepped through the portal, stepping out into the crowd at the HLA headquarters, a small open area having been made for her after the portal had formed. Soon enough, the crowd closed in around the two as they waited for everyone to be addressed. All the while, Marcy was complaining into Tess’ ear. It certainly was strange seeing her so much more talkative. Their discussion had brought a lot of questions to Hush’s mind, but there’d be a time and a place to put them into words. For now, there was a bigger problem to address.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jasmin Lehtinen (Sähkö) Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Kayle Tallion (Twisted Smile) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Lucas Eklund (Chrysopoeia) Character Portrait: Vic Martel (Nobody) Character Portrait: Teen Heroes of America (THA)

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Jericho was awestruck at the sheer amount of people that had gathered in front of the HLA building, laughing under his breath out of overwhelming shock. The two, Jasmin and Ray- he learned their names along the way- had two others who joined up with them. Two guys who had swirling streams of sand keeping the crowd from crushing them as they had made their way to the HLA. Mark and Lucas, the latter being incredibly familiar... Oh right. Motorcycle dude.

Now that they were here, and yet more people were either flying in- Hey! It was Vic! Instinct said to go over and talk-
Oh wait. Almost immediately after Nobody arrived, Jericho locked his sight on the flying 'motorcycle' and its rider as they touched down beside a group of teenagers and other costumed heroes. That guy too, mister trench-coat-creepy-mask-mctriggerhappy-pants. He stopped to talk with a teen, leaving Jericho glaring across the way before his attention was grabbed by the appearance of a blinding rip of light.

From it stepped another duo of presumed capes; a faintly familiar head of purple-tinted brown hair stepped out, with a shorter girl stepping out with the former female. The portal closed behind them, taking its all too blinding light away with it.
The space that had formed for the two girls was immediately swallowed up by other people; again. Everyone here was crowding together and man if that didn't make the Changer vaguely uncomfortable. He was then made even MORE uncomfortable by another cape bumping into him roughly, seemingly to get out of the way of ANOTHER cape who was stalking into the crowd. Jericho turned to make a comment, before stopping and staring at the man who melded into the crowd of parahumans.

The Changer stepped up to the guy, sliding to his side as casually as he could and looking over and just so slightly upward. There was a ... mask? One that seemed to be made of shadows that covered up his face. Hell, maybe the guy couldn't even speak! Oh well, a little conversation didn't hurt anyone right? "Hey! You've got a pretty scary ensemble goin' on there... You one of the HLA? They always seem to have some intimidatin' shit goin' on with their costumes and shit." Jericho popped the question off cheerily, smiling politely at the other cape.

The man turned to him then, sorta; his shoulders shifted just a bit but hey, Jericho would take that as acknowledgement any day, usually. "What? Part of the egomaniacs? No." Ehehehe, that was rude. "Then who are ya with? A villain group? Wait am I not supposed to ask that?" The teen quipped off another question, tilting his head curiously as he found ink pooling around his ankle and feet, chitin building there before suddenly stopping as his focus returned to his appearance. Concentrating on keeping a human appearance was difficult sometimes, especially when Jericho was stressed, or distracted, or anxious. Oop the guy's talking again! "I'm not a hero, I'm not a villain."

How delightfully vague. Ugh, that wasn't a clear answer even if it gave one! "So a vigilante? Huh... Never met one of you before! Are you all so posh? Nice suit- Oh! What're your powers? I mean, people seem to be upset with ya bein' here or sommat, was' with that?" Jericho waited for an answer, blinking and smiling widely when the man turned around entirely and spoke to him directly. "What is your name?" Oh that was odd? The changer could feel the guy sizing him up, or at least taking in his appearance. Huh. "Oh! 'M name is Jericho! Nice to meet'cha~!"

Oh wait, there was stuff going on right? They were here for a reason, so, without even so much as a second thought to appearances; Jericho shifted some of his mass. His skull was briefly, for all of two seconds maybe, wreathed in ink as two more pairs of eyes appeared. Two pointed towards the sky and taking in all they could, two pointed at the crowd directly behind him. The changer gave a quick giggle at the sudden scramble that the cape behind him gave to get away. A man in a vaguely knight-like armor suit thing. Surprise Sir Gawain! Ehehehe. The teen focused again on the cape in front of him, blinking his 'original' eyes in surprise when the guy spoke 'Wendigo'. Weird- "If this were any other time, I would enjoy breaking you."

Whoa whoa whoa! What?! And he smiled while saying that?! Did he dispel some of his weird face fuckery just to say that?! Jesus kringle-fucking christ. "Whoa! Uh? Soooo... You know me? I mean, jeez man, I ain't done anythin' to you have I?" Reflexively, Jericho's ink swelled around his hands; turning them into blunt clubs of bone and what looked like some amount of oily sinew. "Bank robbery, sandwhich shop... Not much in the overall scheme but in the short amount of time that your name has been present, it has been attached to bad things." Oh sweet creepy Christ, he was still smiling, what the fuck? "I'm the guy that shows up when you've done one bad thing too many."

Oh. Sweet fucking christ. He was one of those. "Ohhh so you're one of those huh? Batman style vigilante? Or maybe Dexter? So you've probably really really hurt people too huh? Killed someone with some 'non-lethal' takedown? ... Maybe I went overboard, I probably really did but... Jeez man." Jericho felt it too, some guilt that welled up and spilled out just ever so slightly over his lips. A quick guilty glance from one pair of eyes towards Vic... "Give me every morality argument you can think of, I've heard them all. And the comparison to batman is overdone to the point of being cute. I know who you are now, and that's all that matters." The capes stance had shifted throughout his speaking, turning to face Jericho entirely and relaxing to the point that the Changer felt as if the other guy didn't find him a threat!

So maybe the guy was a huge asshole, who cares! Everyone's different right? And so what if he had the most bullshit excuse for a fucking- Yeah no. Jericho was pissed, and just who the fuck did this guy think he was? "Okay first off, who the fuck are you? Actually no wait, excuse me if you're acting like a hardass and tryin' to 'break' people based on your assumptions! Bleh, y' can't get upset over the batman comparison if y'er gonna be actin' like the guy too! What if I've gone and done more shit than just what you've heard about? Eh?" He gave a quiet growl, throat and chest splitting open and swirling with ink as the classical batman cowl formed on his body; a full face underneath the chitin that glossed metallic. "I know who you are now, and that's all that matters. Bleh bleh bleh."

Okay... That was pretty childish, but c'mon what was he supposed to do? You can't argue with people like that in actuality right? "The mind of a child trapped in playdough. Unless you intend to fight me, I have nothing more to say to you." And with that lovely bit of ending statement, the guy just turned the fuck back around. What the fuck. Well fuck him too then, Jesus.

Jericho gave a silent sigh, turning away and ducking back into the crowd as his form returned to semi-normalcy, his skin was beginning to swim with tattoos and wriggling bits of 'art' that began to bleed out onto his actual physical form. Tendrils of flesh and muscle pulsed their way off his wrists and ankles, the nape of his neck sprouting some that were lined with viciously curved hooks. Fangs and claws sprouted at random on his fingers, face, and toes; the rest of his body covering itself on and off with fur, feathers, scales, chitin... And any mixture of the four. Ugh. He was in a mood now, and trying to keep still was becoming impossible. He couldn't even bring himself to even try and cheer up. Luckily, it seemed that no-one wanted to talk with the cape who's body was doin'... Whatever Jericho's was.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Logan "Shatterstrike" Hartigen

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The morning had started off just like any other, though Logan had to admit, he wasn't feeling as terrible as he used to. Up until his trigger even, he couldn't recall the last time that he truly felt good. He was always tired to some degree, mind always filled with troubled thoughts (which still hadn't changed), and aches and pains accompanied him constantly. Now he felt rested every morning when he woke up, and he was further surprised by the lesser amount of sleep he needed.
Finally pulling himself out of bed, he steadfastly went about his morning, following the three S ritual, as most men undoubtedly do.

Shit, shower, shave. Always in that order.

For him, it was just another lonely, lazy Sunday. It had been a couple of months since his he gained his newfound abilities, triggering in a hospital bed of all places. The fact that he had accidentally harmed his partner had been preying on his mind since. Two months, two, and Mal still had yet to return a phone call or so much and shoot him a text. It was an injustice that he couldn't wrap his mind around. He had done nothing wrong, hadn't even been conscious when it had happened, and now he was being punished, and ignored for something he'd had no control of. He tried putting it all out of his mind, cigarette between his lips, music playing from the phone in his breast pocket. He made his way towards his favorite pub, the idea of a few beers and some good food helped ease the burden his thoughts were quickly becoming.

A short while later, Logan was enjoying his first beer. Being a regular had it's perks. He typically sat at the same table, and since he came in on the same day every other week, he always had the same waitress. She always gave him a smile, called him "Hun', and brought him the same beer he always drank without asking. With his life suddenly being the tumultuous storm of uncertainty that it had become, this last bastion of normality and repetition was a rock he could stand on. It was only after the shrimp tacos and his third beer came, that he finally started to feel better about the day. He read a story on his phone while he ate, steadfastly ignoring the football game on the television, as well as the shouts of the insipid fucks that whooped and hollered for their favored team or players, even as they went through one play and five minutes breakdown and analysis. It would never be clear to him why people liked American football. Sure, European could be interesting, but even that was a stretch. The only sport he truly liked was hockey, and Logan felt he was a little biased on that front.

Logan was just finishing the last of his beer when a high pitched whine caught his attention. It was quiet at first, barely on the borders of perception and he almost dismissed it as the roar of his tinnitus. That is until the wail of the nearby siren reach its full magnitude and became nearly deafening, even inside the pub.

Confusion crossed his features as he heard it. There weren't any drills or tests scheduled for today. As it was, his eyes widened and he felt like his heart might crush itself as his phone mimed the siren outside, telling everyone to seek the nearest shelters immediately. It was all suddenly so surreal, everyone in the pub suddenly standing, even a woman screaming as she broke out into hysterics. Her husband tried calming her as he grabbed their child, but by then, there was no longer calm anywhere to be seen. People were running for the door, heedless of the others in their path. Fighting, arguing and screaming drown out the light music playing over the speakers and even the booming televisions as Joe Schmoe scored another touchdown. The battle through the door only intensified while the manager tried shouting to be heard in a vain attempt at calming everyone down. Little did he know that his staff had already vacated by way of the back door, leaving him to his fate.

Logan watched everything in an aghast daze and retried his phone from the table. At first he tried making a call, but as he had guessed, everyone in the city was probably doing the same thing, and none of his calls would go through. So, he resigned himself to two texts.

Female Parent: I'm fine, getting to shelter, call you when everything blows over.

Mal: Get to a shelter, let me know which one you're at so I can find you after. If you can't get to a shelter, find somewhere safe, I'll call you after. I don't care how pissed you are.

He watched as the little ring simply spun in circles at the bottom of the message, telling him it was sending, but making it clear that the effort was futile at the moment.

With that done, Logan slid his phone back into his pocket, and followed the logic that the kitchen staff had displayed and he left through the back. Upon entering the alley behind the pub, he looked around, ensuring the coast was clear. He didn't want people he saw regularly to know that he was no longer one of them.

The dark stone erupted from various points on his flesh, and wrapped him in it's cold embrace. Suitably armored within his glossy black shell, claws sprang from the covering on his feet, affording him better traction as he broke into a dead sprint. Taking back alleys and scaling between buildings, he was able to spot groups of flying capes heading towards the HLA. He changed his course, avoiding the worst of the pandemonium and arriving within the perimeter as quickly as possible.

He was awestruck by the sight of so many capes gathered in one place. Heroes standing alongside villains, murmuring in discussing, anxiously awaiting the announcement of what it was they would face. It was still all so surreal, and being a new player among the parahuman community left Logan wondering if this was all just some bad dream.

He mostly stuck to the fringes, making his way towards a few of those keeping their distance like himself.

Feeling more than a little out of his depth, he approached the nearest cape, trying his best to hide his nervousness, and asked, "How long does it usually take before we start getting information? I almost expect a riot simply because of the collectively anxiety."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jasmin Lehtinen (Sähkö) Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Kayle Tallion (Twisted Smile) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Lucas Eklund (Chrysopoeia) Character Portrait: Vic Martel (Nobody) Character Portrait: Teen Heroes of America (THA) Character Portrait: Heroes League of America Character Portrait: Logan "Shatterstrike" Hartigen

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Alexander Dalton




Alex was about halfway to the pizza parlor now. His music blasting loud enough for some of the people he walked passed to hear. Given how durable his physiology was now he didn't really have to care about hearing loss. At least not from his commercial bought headphones. The last song faded out only to be replaced with Led Zeppelin's Immigrant Song. He grinned and reflexively tried turning the volume up. Full blast though, which he was a little annoyed by. Maybe now that he bought those pieces of Tinker tech he can buy something higher quality then his store bought wrap arounds. A sudden buzzing on his thigh made him pulled out his phone. Dean again. Might as well humor him.

Bro, so level with me. Do you have an Cape crushes? Like for real cause I swear I'm in love right now

This is getting old. Last week you were obsessed with Laser Hawk.

Dude Can you blame me??! The woman is DDG

If you say extra thick you can forget pizza.

I wasn't going to say such a thing, you wound me sir

So then, who's the "Lucky" lady?

Ranch Hand my dude.

. . . . . . -__-

What???

Oh god you're serious

The woman is a muscle bound goddess, can you blame me man?

Its good to dream big . . . .But i think if you even tried to make a move you might actually die.

I'm not that dumb, but way to go shattering dreams my dude

I Try ^^

Still didn't say who you're crush is bro ;)

And I never will ~

You ass XP

Alex snorted and was about to send another text back when a whining sound cut through his music. and suddenly, the whole world seemed to stand still for a moment. It was like a fog horn, a low whining cycle. It was the air raid sirens. Alex yanked down his headphones and looked around frantically.

Everyone was momentarily frozen. some from shock, other disbelief. most out of fear though. Seconds passed and the signature Emergency Alert System could be heard coming from about every house and store ringing out across the entire city. Alex felt his stomach drop. The sudden urge to empty out what little was in his stomach trying to override his brain. He chocked it all back down as people began to panic. some tried denying it. most though instantly started to run. over the sound of the sirens, one word rang out from the crowd as it began to surge. "Abhorrents!!!"

Almost instinctively, Alex ducked into the closest side street. He ripped open his bag and grasped at his helmet. Only then did he realize he was shacking almost violently, causing his helmet to be dropped on the ground. His breathing was fast and uneven. He was scared, everyone was. The world around them was about to become a war zone. Attempts to try and steady his breathing weren't going so well, and he just wouldn't stop shacking. Alex was about to go straight into full blown panic when the sudden rhythmic vibrating at his thigh snapped him away from himself.

He fumbled for the phone. it was his grandpa calling him.
"Hello?"

"Alex where are you? Are you safe?"

"Yeah, I'm safe. I'm about halfway to Tom's right now. How are you and grandma??" Worry flooded His voice. He was so far away from them, would they both be able to get help and be in a shelter in time? Alex began to stutter, trying to figure out what to do. it was his grandpa that snapped him back.

"Alexander! I need you to listen okay? Your grandmother and me are fine and being helped escorted to a shelter. Calm yourself, and just breath. Here count and breath with me like we used to, can you do that for me?"
The man's voice was not as steady as it usually was, but still strong as ever. Alex followed along, feeling himself steady and regain composure. This was happening. But his family was being taken care of.

Now boy, you don't need to explain anything to me. But I Know what you have been up to for the past few months. I've seen you're costume when you weren't at home. I'm not sure how long it has been going on, but I've known for a while. Hard to miss when I cant even lift my own grandson.
The words seemed to rewind and play back in Alex's mind a few times before the gravity of what his grandpa had just said came to him. Grandpa knows I'm parahuman.
" Now i want you to answer me this. Are you going to go out there and help?

It took another minute before he said anything, a lump the size of a softball seemingly wedging itself in his throat. Then he finally spoke. "Yes. I am,"

" . . . . Ok. There was yet another pause after. "You come back to us son, don't you go and get yourself killed. What was he going to expect from a former soldier? He must have his grandpa's sense of duty.
Remember what i told you about courage?

Alex sniffed, holding back tears. "It's not the absence of fear, its the ability to act in spite of it."

"That's my boy, Now go out there and show some courage. Don't worry about me and grandma. We love you." He could hear pride in the mans voice.

Hanging up. Alex picked up his helmet. Time to go face the apocalypse.

"I love you too."



Alex flew through the air. Riding a disk shaped barrier. he looked down below to see the police officers established at the intersections, attempting to route the traffic and prevent any chaos as they lead civilians towards the nearest shelters. All the while, the air raid sirens blared in the background, drowning out the sounds of panic and confusion bellow. As Alex flew on he soon noticed that there were other capes flying near him. Some were in thrown together costumes, others in plain civilian cloths but wrapped in some variety of power and or energy. Nobody said anything but a nod was shared between the small group. They all knew what was about to happen. Whether any of them were prepared or not.

As they reached the blocks around the Heroes League of America Headquarters, The "Air traffic" got a bit too thick, forcing most of the fliers to touch down and brave through the crowd of people trying to take refuge in the building. The crowd had been thinned and yellow police tape blocked off intersections heading towards the HQ. When Alex was able to finally wiggle his way in and was taken aback by the sight. There had to be a few hundred capes stand in front of the building, with more appearing every passing second. Alex was careful to avoid the larger open spaces that were made to allow teleporters easy entry.A quick look around revealed capes of all kinds were present. Their costumes ranging from bright colors or dark colors, to no costume at all. Villains, heroes, and vigilantes were all present.

The atmosphere was thick with a slew of emotions. some were excited, others nervous. The shacking feeling that they all were about to go to war with what many considered to be a god. Many were speculating on what abhorrent was going to show. from the sound of it people had it narrowed down to three. Behemoth, Giant, or Tangle. Others were psyching each other up and trying to keep moral. Alex stayed reasonably quiet. Wondering both when they would be given their orders and if he might know anybody in the crowd. Which given how many people were here wasn't unlikely. Best to focus anyway. it looked like things were starting.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black

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In a certain bedroom with nothing but a bed, a girl was sleeping. In her head, there was a frantic scream. Faint, but annoyingly familiar to her ears. ACE, NO!!!!!!

The girl opened her eyes, revealing brown eyes colored with swirls of red. Her mother Akira said that her eyes were a beautiful color, unlike anyone in their family of capes. Your eyes are a blessing; her words would always follow along those lines. Coming from that woman, Mara felt greatly annoyed and increasingly so every time some variation of the sentence came from her mouth. It was a reminder of her trigger event, and she didn't think anyone would want to be reminded of their trigger events.

Bed sheets rustled as Mara sat up, disgruntled and slightly confused. She was surprised that nothing was attacking her today. Rather than the usual buzz warning her of imminent danger, she felt an unpleasant and incessant dull ache around her chest area. Maybe she just had a bad dream. The thought didn't make the feeling disappear. Troubled, she picked up was her phone.

With nothing and no one waking her up, Mara woke up a little later than usual - 09:54. Ace would say that was still "damn early," but she thought it was three hours later than usual. It unsettled her.

Mara frowned in thought, wondering what those two people were planning and slipped out of bed. Even as she padded downstairs, there was no noise but she smelled something weird. It kind of smelled like...

She was instantly on guard as she turned the corner into the kitchen. Holes ranging from the size of a nickel to the size of a basketball littered the kitchen. By the kitchen table, she could see two bodies covered in blood and could only assume that they were Akira and Abel. How had she slept through all of this? Judging by the type of damage done to the kitchen, the one who did this was-

"Hey, Mara," a familiat voice said. On the other side of the kitchen was Ace with not a speck of blood on him. He seemed tired though, she noted. As the wind started to rustle his clothes, he jumped lightly and crossed the kitchen.

She looked at him expectantly, and he knew that the look meant that she wanted an explanation. Why all of a sudden? Isn't killing innocents wrong? Did they do something wrong? What's going on? Ace scratched his head, a habit picked up from Akira. He smiled sheepishly.

"Yeah. While you were sleeping, we ate breakfast together." He paused and pursed his lips. "Well, you know how I'm a hero. We've been getting warnings that there'll be an Abhorrent attack within the week. Came back to check on you, make sure you're doing well, yeah? I was thinking of killing them and taking you with me. Didn't make me feel good since I thought they were still getting you to master your powers. And then they tell me that they're letting you free like they did for me. It was awesome news! Great job, by the way. It took me a little longer to master my own powers."

Mara noted that he seemed super happy, even as he said these next words.

"So I just asked them if I could get you to live with me, you know? I guess I said it wrong cuz they started saying that a parahuman must be independent and all that crap... So I finished 'em off. I'm 18, and you're training's finished. We don't need 'em anymore. A lot of people die from Abhorrent attacks. We can crush this place and say it was a result from some debris or something."

And Mara found that okay. When she looked behind Ace and saw her parents again, she felt no guilt or sympathy... but something inside of her felt wrong. It was as if this was somehow going against Ace's moral code even though it was Ace himself who killed them.

He smiled and took her hand. After a moment, he said softly, "Mara. If by chance, we make it through the attack alive, would you come live with me? I won't force you to become a hero or anything like that. You'll get to go to school, And we'll see each other more often."

Mara was vaguely reminded of those marriage proposals she watched in movies and on YouTube. Her answer was obvious.

"Yes." All she wanted was to be with him. He showed her what was right with this world. Ace seemed really, really happy, and it made Mara happy.

On the car ride to Ace's apartment, the air sirens went off. Her heart stopped and so did Ace's. The car actually did come to a stop though. In the unmoving cae, the prolonged beep rang from their phones, and the chaos began. If she wasn't so worried, then maybe she would have found it interesting how streets and neighborhoods could be filled with such chaos in less than five minutes.

With hands clasped tight, they moved through the chaos to HLA HQ. Even as they stood in the crowd of costumed parahumans, Mara did not let go of Ace's hand.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Victor "LTL" Stellianos

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“Mocha Capuccino for a Victor?”

“Yo.” Victor stated, pushing through the crowd in the coffee shop with a sandwich already in his hand. As he reached the barista, he gave a wide smile and grabbed the cup from the guy who looked like he could use at least 4 more hours of sleep. The barista immediately moved on to the next order as the line up was a bit ridiculous this morning. Not wanting to make himself a nuisance in the crowded store, Victor left the building and hopped back into his car, taking another sip from his drink and placing both his sandwich and drink in the cup holders. With little flair, Victor took off down the road trying to figure out where exactly he had to go this morning. He did have to go to the bank, but that could wait. He could see what was going down at the park, maybe take a walk around there. He could also head towards the shadier parts of town and hope for something exciting to happen. That seemed like the best idea so far, mainly because he didn’t really have anything else going on.

So with that in mind, he set off at a cruise speed, sipping on his drink and watching everything around him carefully for any signs that LTL would be needed. Granted, LTL was needed at all times of the day but to admit that to the public would be egotistical...better that they say they need him than him broadcast it. After a short while, Victor came up to a light and noticed that the line was a bit long. Craning his head out the window to see what was holding them up, he could see an accident in the middle of the intersection had caused traffic to come to a standstill. “Bunk.” Victor said, noticing that he was already blocked in and would be here awhile. He propped his arm on the car door and placed his head in his hand. He had things to do, places to go...well not really but anywhere was better than here.

It was then that the sound started blaring.

Air raid sirens? His phone started buzzing and the message that came across the screen was enough to freeze Victor’s blood...and get it boiling at the same time. When he looked back up, he saw cars literally bashing into each other to try and get anywhere but gridlock. People were sprinting down the streets, either heading to the shelters or attempting to get as far away as possible. Victor gave a smile, grabbing his backpack and pulling out his costume. His clothes melted away onto the car seat and within a couple of seconds he was fully donned in his silver and white suit. He stepped out into the street, smiling beneath his mask as cars rammed into each other with all the grace of a bumper cars track. Victor gave a ‘tsk tsk tsk’ sound as the clothing around his feet receded long enough for his bare skin to touch concrete. With a bit of overly dramatic flair, concrete barriers started raising between the troublemakers of the lot. “You idiots trying to act like you’re in a derby!” Victor yelled, using the concrete beneath his feet to raise him to a level so he could properly project his voice. “Get out of your cars and run to the nearest shelter. You’re doing nothing but being a nuisance and potential hazard to everyone here!”

He wasn’t sure if they could hear him over the sirens and general panic, but seeing as they were now blocked in the people got out of their cars and started running with the rest of them. Now, the next immediate question...what was he going to do about his car? He raised a hand to his chin, thinking for a moment before he summoned a massive hand out of concrete and picked up his car as carefully as he could. Looking around, he spotted a rather narrow alley and managed to slid his car in there. Once that was done, he put a hand on one of the buildings, forming a barrier around his vehicle. People might say he was worrying to much about material possessions, he’d tell them to fuck himself. He loved his car, had put a ton of work into it and wasn’t about to see it destroyed because an Abhorrent decided to come and wreck his life. With that done, he brushed off his hands and started running towards the HLA HQ.




It was only once LTL was within eyesight of the HQ, which was surrounded by capes of varying affiliation that he pulled out his phone. Immediately he noticed that there was several missed calls from an assortment of people, but the only one to repeatedly call him was Brian. Such was the life of having the best of the best, Victor had to assume that the lines were flooded to hell with incoming and outgoing calls, but they didn’t pay for the best service because they ‘felt like it’. They were prioritized over a ton of people, and while that made him feel guilty for still being able to call people when others couldn’t, it was simply the fact of life. With a flick of his thumb, he hit redial and held the phone up to his ear. Nearly on the first ring, his uncle picked up the phone. “You shit!” He started, although it sounded like he was a bit out of breath. “I’ve been trying to get a hold of you! Don’t you know what’s going on!”

“Of course I do, it’s why I’m at the HLA HQ, along with what looks like hundreds of other capes.” There was a brief pause from Brian.

“Don’t do this…” Brian stated, his concern easily coming across the phone. “There are plenty of other capes there, they can handle this...you don’t need to be going against the Abhorrent.”

“And turn down the opportunity of a lifetime? LTL going up against a monster the size of a city? It’s what my name means!”

“This isn’t a game Victor!” Brian yelled. “That thing can’t be stopped...can’t be stalled. What can you possibly do? Just...get out of there alright?”

“Can’t do that Bri Bri.” Victor stated, looking at the mass of crowds push and run in a nearly blind panic. “If every hero did that, we’d already be extinct.”

“Vic, don’t make me beg.”

“I’ll give you a call when the fight’s over. For the time being, make sure you’re safe and do your best to keep your head down. I have to go, everyone’s starting to gather.” Victor hung up the phone, hearing Brian complain about it for a second before the call was done. His Uncle was understandably worried, and to be honest, Victor would have been more scared if Brian wasn’t panicking slightly. At least it made the situation real, because Brian was very much someone who didn’t like wearing his emotions on his sleeve. It showed he cared at the very least, even if it did make Victor feel somewhat guilty with going through with this.

After a few more moments of thought, he took a breath and pushed his way through the crowd to the gathering of capes in front of the HLA HQ.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Jasmin Lehtinen (Sähkö) Character Portrait: River Riley (Zero) Character Portrait: Jason Riley (Quantum) Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black Character Portrait: Kayle Tallion (Twisted Smile) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Splatterblood's Crew Character Portrait: Lucas Eklund (Chrysopoeia) Character Portrait: Vic Martel (Nobody) Character Portrait: Teen Heroes of America (THA) Character Portrait: Heroes League of America Character Portrait: The Adept Mages Character Portrait: Logan "Shatterstrike" Hartigen Character Portrait: Skull Syndicate Character Portrait: The Think Tank Character Portrait: The Freakshow! Character Portrait: Nova Edinger Character Portrait: Legend (The Triumvirate) Character Portrait: Victor "LTL" Stellianos

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Capetown, TX. 09/20/2017, 10:36 AM. 73°F,
Partly Cloudy. Arc 4: Abberance.




Chaos. It was indescribable as anything other than complete chaos and pandemonium. The English language could try in vain, but there's no describing the utter devastation that was going on before Jasmin's eyes.

..... "Everyone is coming together." Jasmin Lehtinen spoke her thoughts aloud, in awe. All around her was a mass of capes, and more poured in, from around the world, like ants. There was a crowd of hundreds now, almost entirely made up of foreign aid and support groups from around the world. A large chunk was the United States' own HLA and THA teams from all around the country. The building's parking lot was large, but it could hardly accommodate the crowd that was forming. Jasmin looked at the HLA's headquarters building. You'd expect a team of heroes to have a tower or a skyscraper somewhere, maybe letter-shaped and on a perfectly-sized island nearby. Instead, Capetown's HLA HQ was more like a police station, no more like a fire station. There was a section of the building that was obviously large and box-shaped, like how you could always point out the gymnasium at a school. Probably a training room, Jasmin thought. The parking lot was also large, large enough to accommodate a lot of emergency response vehicles. Even so, the group swelled past the parking lot's perimeter, and into the empty streets. On the edge of the crowd, more capes arrived, through portals, flying vehicles, or carried by Speedsters. it was surreal. Capes of all sizes, shapes, ethnicities, colors of suits, villains, heroes, people made of fire or earth, capes with things floating around them, or Tinkers in suits of armor. Changers that look like monsters or animals, capes hovering above the head-line, or capes flying about. The murmuring from the surrounding crowd made conversation nearly impossible.
..... Until up ahead at the HQ, a large, flashy-green portal opened up. The portal threw out swirling green sparks at the edges of the portal-way, almost like Dr. Strange's portals. From inside the portal came a blinding white light, infront of which Jasmin could make out four dark silhouettes. Immediately, Jasmin knew who these four were, and in the same way it did when she heard the air raid sirens start up, her heart paused for a second. The Triumvirate.
..... The first to step out of the portal and come into focus was Legend. Leader of the Triumvirate, and aptly named, Legend had a blue suit with silver and red accents and a red cape. Legend, Jasmin knew, had a nigh-invincible body, could fly, and had mind-boggling strength. The next to step through was Hero, who, in Jasmin's opinion, was a lot less aptly named. He looked more like a villain, like Dr. Doom, than one of the most renown heroes in the world. Hero's powers' specifics weren't fully public knowledge, but it's known that he has access to virtually any power in the world that he wants' and is limited to three to four at a time. The next to step through, and last of the Triumvirate, was Suit. Jasmin didn't know much about his antics and tactics, but she knew he was the most impressive Tinker on the planet. Like a mixture of Rick Sanchez, Tony Stark, and Batman, he had a gadget for literally everything. Jasmin looked at him with the most interest, as he was possibly the most mysterious of the Triumvirate to her. Suit has never been seen outside of his suit, like Master Chief, no one knows what he looks like or even his skin color. He's known as the most powerful and versatile Tinker in the world, due to being able to copy a Tinker's specialty once he comes across another Tinker. As a result his gadgets are so much more complex and magical than even the most powerful Tinkers Jasmin has heard of. Suit's suit itself has thousands of different gadgets and things invisibly embedded into it, and the suit can morph between several different styles and looks, each with different specialties and functions. He has specific suits for specific Abhorrents, and today, he was in his Tangle suit. The last silhouette, though not officially part of the Triumvirate, was a famously strong cape named Synergy. Synergy was known to commonly accompany the Triumvirate during major threats like Abhorrents. Synergy, Jasmin knew, was a seriously powerful Trump cape with the power to copy the powers of other capes that he touches, up to two at a time. When he copies a power, he has the power's full potential unlocked as the original cape could possibly have. So, say there's a cape that isn't experienced with their power but has potential to learn a lot, Synergy, after copying the power, would use the power like a master. Synergy also has the ability to synergize two copied powers and have them interact in unpredictable ways outside of the scope of the original two powers. This combination makes him an extremely powerful cape.
..... These four were the veterans of the veterans, and while their being here did calm Jasmin a little bit, it also filled her with a sense of dread knowing that the situation she was in was very, very real. Jasmin watched ahead as soldiers began to flood out of the portal that the Triumvirate had walked out of. PCRT? That was the most likely answer, but they didn't have the normal black face mask and red-accented body armor that Jasmin was used to seeing, these soldiers instead had bulkier clothing with blue accents and half-gas-mask-like half-night-vision-like goggles.
..... "-and those are PCRT Abhorrent response members. Their suits are Tinker-made, specifically to resist Tangle's radiation, laser-beams, and his plant minions' attacks." Ray said, as Jasmin realized she had speaking to her this entire time, as Jasmin hadn't been paying attention. As Ray finished her sentence, Jasmin noticed that up at the front of the crowd, Suit took a large sleek black box reminiscent of a suitcase off of his back. He got on a knee and placed it on the ground. Immediately, it started coming apart as if made of hundreds of boxes that were seamlessly each a part of the original box a second ago. Then, rotors popped out of the tops of the black boxes, each perfectly smooth and the size of a rubix cube, and they began flying around the crowd of capes. Drones, Jasmin thought, as one flew to her and hovered in front of her. Jasmin looked next to her at Ray, and noticed that Ray had put her left arm outstretched in front of her, and the drone landed on her wrist, and began to transform, reconstructing itself into a wrist band, about two inches wide and an eighth of an inch thick. Jasmin did the same, and though the wristband seemed to be made of some sort of black metal, it felt curious to her, as she felt literally no paths of connection to it through electricity. For the first time in her life, Jasmin felt something she couldn't shock.
..... "Some kind of power-resistance material, probably made by some Tinker who is the only in the world who can make it. Besides Suit, I guess." Ray spoke again, confirming Jasmin's suspicions. Jasmin moved her arm around and was surprised that this amount of metal on her arm felt completely weightless. Jasmin looked to Lucas and Mark, or Chrysopoeia and Sandstorm as they were in costume, and they also had the wristbands. Systematically, every cape in the crowd began accepting the drones onto their arms. Legend, up at the front of the crowd, began a noble-sounding speech about how everyone here was doing a great service to humanity. Suddenly, Jasmin became aware that her face was naked, without her iron-shavings mask. Jasmin pulled out the bottle and unstoppered it, magnetizing the shavings to her face, conscious of the spiky configuration they fell into along the magnetic field lines. Ray, or Seraphim, wasn't in her portal-costume, but it was understandable as the armor of portals would be dangerous in this crowd of close bodies.

Jericho flinched, partially out of reflex and partially because he wasn't paying attention, when the sparking swirling amalgamation of green light and energy abruptly popped into existence ahead. His eyes narrowed, focusing in on the 'gateway' as it were, taking in every possible detail about the quartet of capes before opting to change his eyes into those that normally belonged to a raptor. Minute details, tiny features, everything possible to see with 'mundane' sight opened up for Jericho. Suit was taller than Jericho expected, and Legend was... Almost everything that the Changer thought he would be, and maybe a little not so.

It was Hero that Jericho immediately distrusted, if only because the costume that he wore was one that made Jericho think of villains from comic books and similar. Hero made the Changer... suspicious, but for no good reason, seeing as how the man put himself through harms gauntlet day in and out when it came to the Abhorrents.

His gaze slid over to Synergy, or at least the man who held the name, and studied him for a time. Tall, dark, bald and with a posture that seemed to scream “Regality.” Jericho was reminded of a lion when he looked upon the man. His attention shifted back to Jasmin and the rest of his ‘friends’. Multiple eyes sprouted into existence upon his skull, ink flowing and then fading into nothing as pupils contracted and dilated on each recognizable face. Jasmin, Vic-Nobody, The Gunman, The girl who stepped out of light, the ‘not-a-batman’, and then a blondie who seemed to arrive just a little bit later than everyone else on a disk of turquiose light. Jericho’s eyebrows rose at the somewhat familiar form, before furrowing in concentration as he tried to piece together where he may have seen the unknown cape from.

His attention was again yanked away, his focus turning towards a small scuffle between a man who dressed himself like some sort of medieval ranger, with a bow and arrow to tout, and a man who wore nothing but a body suit marked with digital numbers. The body suit man had the ranger held up by the collar of his cloak, and a small circle had formed around the two. Several other capes watched on warily, and as some others from the edge began to push to break the two apart, Jericho noticed a familiar woman making her way over.

A black, silver and magenta colored cape floated over to the two scuffling, their words and voices growing louder and a little more heated. The cape’s mask covered their face, adorned with with the magenta markings that covered their- her- whole suit. A helmet that was remniscent of a hawk’s head, along with a visor that covered everything except for the bottom half of her face. From mid breast and upper sternum, her suit was silver and seemingly armored, with two markings on her stomach and upper groin glowing with hot pink light. Her voice was nothing like her suit led Jericho to believe: firm instead of soothing, authoritive, and pissed. “Hey! Hey! Pull yourselves together. Don’t break the unspoken rules.”

It was those words that caused the commotion to come grinding to a halt. ‘Don’t break the unspoken rules.’ Every cape within hearing distance, even some of those who only heard the ‘...rules’ stood a little straighter, gritted their teeth- all manner of stress reflex. ‘The Unspoken Rules’ were rules between capes that were exactly as they sounded: unspoken rules that every known and unknown cape followed. To break them was to vilify yourself against quite actually every other cape in the area. Maybe even the continent.

The two scuffling capes separated themselves, one looking cowed and the other looking almost as if his pride had taken a direct hit. Jericho, on the other hand, recognized Laser Hawk the moment she began speaking. His mind flew back through time to the aftermath of the bank heist: an HLA woman who turned her hands into magenta light and essentially dissolved matter. A breaker who was... Scary to say the least. Respected to say even less. She had flight as part of her kit, but from what Jericho saw of her, not very fast flight. He could outrun her, probably... She only flew as long as her hands were glowing, maybe a part of her power?

He was nervous all the same, a minutely guilty part of his conscience poking its dirty, dirty hands into his emotions. The Changer hummed to himself, reflexively shuffling away from Laser Hawk and the group of capes around her. He bumped into Jasmin, muttering sorry in his passing as he disappeared just a little deeper into the crowd of capes. There were plenty of people around to take attention off of him, right? “Fuck.”

It was only after a short moment of getting into a comfortable enough space- (read as getting distance between himself and Laser Hawk) that Jericho turned back towards the ‘front’. A drone was in his face, and as he reached out, the automaton landed and formed into the bracelets everyone else was receiving. Legend was going on about something or another, Jericho wasn’t paying attention, far too interested in the metal bracelet around his wrist.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black

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With hands clasped tight, they moved through the chaos to HLA HQ. Even as they stood in the crowd of costumed parahumans, Mara did not let go of Ace's hand.

She was scared. It was actually happening. An abhorrent was going to go through here, right here in their hometown, and people were going to die. Mara stared blankly ahead and didn't look up at the people surrounding her - they were strangers and had nothing to do with her. They were going to die. She knew she couldn't be a hero like Ace. Even Ace couldn't save everyone. They were going to die. Ace wouldn't die, though. She wouldn't let him die.

There was a sudden quiet, and then commotion again. Was it starting already? No, she immediately calmed herself. Ace could sense her tension, she knew, because his hands squeezed her hand a little tighter. He wasn't talking at all now, and that didn't help at all. It was okay, though, because she knew that he cared and his hand was warm. He was safe. She looked at him, but he was staring at something else with a determined face. Four prominent figures. Mara could barely see them through the tall crowds, but she could tell that they were respected by Ace. They were probably very powerful capes.

Not even a minute later, there was a fight. Even with all this noise, she could clearly hear a woman's voice pierce through the background chatter. Powerful and maybe even arrogant, but she was betting that the woman was more powerful than arrogant. Again, the "unspoken rules" were mentioned. Just like the time in that sandwhich shop. She could envision the air quotes around that phrase. Everyone quieted, but she still didn't understand what the unspoken rules were. How could there be rules if no one said them out loud? She searched for a comparison, but she could only come up with the unspoken agreement between her Ace that she would not become a hero.

Ace still hasn't talked to her since he told her to hold his hand when they got off the car. Despite her anxiety about this situation, her thoughts distracted her and Ace's presence already calmed her down significantly.

Another commotion broke out. People were yelping, stumbling, jumping, and sometimes using their powers. This time, she wondered if someone was crazy enough to pick fights with the crowd when an abhorrent was probably minutes away from destroying this place. No, she told herself again. Black boxes with propellors flew through the air and landed on people. Mara observed that some people were too sensitive and were merely surprised when the boxes latched around their wrists as it did to her right wrist just now. By Ace's sudden body jerk, he was surprised too.

Mara skimmed the design on her right wrist. Black, plain, metallic maybe, and designed like a bracelet. Or maybe a faceless watch. Nothing happened. Now that she thought about it, she couldn't feel it. It was completely harmless. What was this? A Tinker probably made this, but she wasn't sure. It wasn't likely to harm her since it wouldn't have been able to latch onto her otherwise, but she was worried for Ace who had no such protection. He must have known that she would worry since he gave her a reassuring smile.

It's probably a tracking device. We're going into a battle, after all. Let's not worry too much about that and trust them. Everyone here are our allies, you know.

Yes, that made sense. A suddenly loud voice dominated the clearing, and she couldn't help but turn her attention to the flying cape. The man was making a speech that made her feel... strangely annoyed. The cape Ace labeled as "Legend" was making a noble speech, how capes were doing this for the good of humanity. This was a noble act. Thinking about it, this was probably also very much in line with Ace's philosophy and, in turn, her own. Ace looked almost awed at the sight of this charismatic cape. Mara admitted that the cape seemed reliably strong at first glance. Maybe it was the costume...

But there was a something bothering her, a bothersome pressure in her chest. An unwanted emotion. She wondered idly as she stared blankly at the hero above her...

Why does this seem kind of... wrong?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Legend (The Triumvirate)

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#, as written by Tanman
◄:Terry ‘Tess’ Farina:►
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Standing among the crowd of people, Tess was struck by the tension in the air. Even after the big names such as Legend and the like arrived, it still hadn’t really sunk in the gravity of the situation. She knew about Abhorrent attacks. Who didn’t in this day and age? But she’d never been close to one. Never impacted. It occurred to her how sheltered a life that she’d been living up until this point. Maybe if she’d experienced it herself, she’d have listened to Marcy and fled far away from here? Or maybe because she’d experienced the loss it brought about, she’d be more compelled to fight? People knew the figures. She knew the figures. Getting involved in something like this, even with incredible powers, didn’t change anything. Statistically, half or more of the people standing here wouldn’t be when all was said and done. It was so unreal, and she still couldn’t entirely comprehend it. Faintly, she realised how tense her whole body was, and made a point to relax her jaw and unclench her hands.

As the floating bands made their way over, Tess and Marcy got plenty of chance to see others letting them attach before they did the same. “I guess it’s something to help protect us..?” Tess whispered to Marcy, though she didn’t entirely know why she felt the need to keep quiet. Maybe she was embarrassed to be seen as ignorant in such a situation? Normally, she was confident when acting as Hush, but the atmosphere seemed to suck all of that out of her. Regardless, Marcy simply gave a snort, rolling her eyes. “Or it’s to help identify us when we’re dead.” The coldness of Marcy’s comment struck Tess, but she held whatever objections she had to herself. There was no sense in chastising her about this. In this grim a situation, she couldn’t be entirely certain she was wrong.

“Last chance for us to leave by the way. Even with these gadgets on, no-one would fault us.” Nudging Tess in the side Marcy tried a final plea, but Tess simply shook her head, steeling her resolve. Even if everyone was scared. Even if she was scared. Everyone was here fighting. Faintly, she still had hope. The presence of everyone gave her the courage to remain and fight. She’d been too scared of risking herself in the past. This was going to be different. She was going to make a difference. And, if she somehow survived this, she’d have to change. Seeing everyone here confirmed it to her. With the gift she had, she had a responsibility to help protect everyone. She wasn’t going to run or hide any longer. She was a hero. It was time she started acting more like one.

Listening to Legend, her heart swelled. They could do this.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Jasmin Lehtinen (Sähkö) Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black Character Portrait: Kayle Tallion (Twisted Smile) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Splatterblood's Crew Character Portrait: Lucas Eklund (Chrysopoeia) Character Portrait: Vic Martel (Nobody) Character Portrait: Teen Heroes of America (THA) Character Portrait: Heroes League of America Character Portrait: The Adept Mages Character Portrait: Logan "Shatterstrike" Hartigen Character Portrait: Skull Syndicate Character Portrait: The Think Tank Character Portrait: The Freakshow! Character Portrait: Nova Edinger Character Portrait: Legend (The Triumvirate) Character Portrait: Victor "LTL" Stellianos

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Capetown, TX. 09/20/2017, 10:40 AM. 73°F,
Partly Cloudy. Arc 4: Abberance.




Jasmin Lehtinen caught a glimpse of something that made her heart skip a beat. A familiar sight, familiar capes. Myrlyn, Jeu, Drow, Alchimyst, and the rest of the Adept Mages bunched together. Curiously, she only saw two heads of white hair. Weren't there three brothers with white hair? Jasmin felt a moment's apprehension before remembering the Unspoken Rules. They were allies. For now. All of the local heroes were present in force. It wasn’t a surprising fact – skipping this fight, as a hero, let alone a team of heroes, would be unforgivable to the public. Jasmin was surprised that nearly all of the big villain gangs were all present. Gangs that brutally fought for territory and money, gangs with unbreakable feuds against each other.
..... That was the thing about the Abhorrents, Jasmin had learned. They were a much bigger threat to society, to humanity, to survival and extinction, than any amount of human-on-human hatred. It's why the Unspoken Rules exist. During Abhorrent attacks you take no opportunity against your fellow capes. Not to find out their identities, not to end their lives, not to bicker and fight. You focus on the common enemy. Or else.
..... "-all should know your chances going into this battle. Given the statistics from our previous encounters with Tangle, a ‘good day’ still means that at least one in three of the people present will probably be dead before this day is done. Tangle is an antediluvian horror capable of killing each and every one of us. The odds are likely not going to be as good as a 33% death rate."
..... This jolted Jasmin into listening to Legend's speech. It seemed to have caught the attention of the rest of the crowd, as uncomfortable shifting and a quiet murmur rippled through the crowd. Everyone knew that it was dangerous being here. But hearing numbers brought unease. One in three dead as a best case scenario. And that's not counting life-threatening or life-altering wounds.
..... “I’m telling all of you your chances now because you deserve to know. We're all humans here, we all have the right to live. We so rarely get the chance to inform those individuals brave enough to step up and fight these monsters. The primary message I want to convey, even more than briefing you on the particulars of his abilities, organizing formations and battle plans, is that I do not want you to underestimate Tangle. I have seen too many good heroes, rogues,” Legend paused for a fraction of a second, “And villains, too, die because they let their guard down.
..... “Tangle is the fifth and final Abhorrent to have shown up. I won't give a full history lesson, but his first attack was in 1992. At 75 feet tall, hes the shortest of the Abhorrents, but his body is shaped like a snake's and his tail trails for several hundred feet. Though he looks like a plant, his biology is something entirely alien to us. His body is made up of intertwines 'vines' similar to how a large rope looks. Each of these vines is layered like an onion, with the outermost layer being as hard as aluminum, the next one as hard as steel, the next tungsten, etc. until it quickly reaches harder than existing materials. Materials so strong virtually no one's powers can harm them. Though Tangle looks like a plant, he is not mindless. Do not underestimate him. The extent of his intelligence, and whether he is sentient, is unknown. But he can prioritize target, and has shown tactics and skill, as well as usually having an apparent specific location or target when he's attacking a city.
..... “As for abilities, Tangle is fast. Not speedster-level, but he can accelerate to 75 miles per hour in half a minute from a standstill. He's even quicker when he's already moving, turning, or thrashing. He has two auras. Two hundred feet out from him, all metal capable of rusting will immediately start to rust all of the way through. Not just a rust layer on the outside, but all the way to the center. Steel bars will be reduced to rust as weak as a sand castle. About a hundred feet out from him, a radiation aura starts. Getting inside this aura is an immediate death sentence within 2 weeks. Getting close enough to touch Tangle is enough radiation to kill you before the fight's over with. It's more dangerous than standing next to a melting reactor. If you aren't immune, don't get close.
..... “Tangle also has macro-scale control of both light, or electromagnetic radiation, and plants. He will shoot you with lasers. He will flashbang everyone. He can turn invisible. He can make you blind. He'll hit you with radiation blasts without you even knowing. His application of the control of light is extensive. After battle, everyone present should go through cape-powered healing and/or radiation therapy. Lastly, he can grow plants in seconds, and make them strong enough to constrict and crumble concrete. He also has minions made entirely of plants, that he likely controls like the command center of a hive mind."
..... As if the timing were rehearsed, as soon as Legend finished the speech, a loud crashing-crunching-explosion-like sound similar to a concrete building being thrown into another building was immediately followed by the sound of gasps and screams. Jasmin whipped her head to look behind her, and she felt the entire crowd do the same. Down the street, a giant mass of writhing and whipping tentacles coming out of a large snake-shaped form had just crashed into a building, failing to do the 90-degree turn at the intersection. It immediately turned, whipping its 'head' to stare at the crowd of capes.
..... Tangle's 'mouth' looked like a green bulb of a flower yet to bloom. Like the bulb on the Pokemon, Bulbasaur's back. Slowly, it peeled open, revealing a pink petal-like inside. And a maw inexplicably lined with teeth. Then a glass-shattering, ground-shaking shriek emanated from it.
..... Panic. Jasmin couldn't think as the massive abberation raced down the street towards the crowd. Already, capes were rushing forwards, providing a line of defense, whilst others ran in the opposite direction. Fight or flight. There was a third option, seizing up in the middle, as Jasmin was currently doing. The primal fear was something she'd never felt before in her life. It was similar to that time she had been 10 feet away from a mountain lion while camping five years ago, the heart-sinking deer-in-headlights feeling, but it was deeper, worse. The fear was not just the primal fear of a predator or a deadly situation, it was also the fear of the unnatural, the eldritch, the alien. Tears welled up in her eyes as her disabled mind and body were unable to react to the primal panic swirling in her brain. Jasmin's powers began to take over, switching to her electromagnetic vision, she could immediately see the electrical impulses lighting up like fireworks in the brains of other capes. Adrenaline. Hers came too, and suddenly, as her body tensed to jump, she was swallowed up by Jericho's shifting form.

Jericho’s heart dropped into his feet, maybe even fell out of his chest outright and onto the pavement below. Splattered like a water balloon or something. Panic flooded his system, his mind froze, his skin prickled with needles of numbing cold... Then he shoved it all out of his head, reflexively going so far as to begin shifting and morphing then and there, ink flowing around him as he took the biggest form he’d taken in... ever.

Long, moose-like antlers rose from the back of his skull, as his body shifted forward, his legs remaining about the same position as they were, his torso shifting and moving forward as flesh rapidly began extending backwards from his buttocks. His body swelled with flesh, muscle and bone, skull disappearing under a swirling vortex of ink for a moment before reappearing in the shape of an elk’s fleshless head.

From his waistline down, Jericho grew himself into a centaur-esque shape, flesh and muscle just barely obscured by a thin, thin layer of gray fur. It was more predatory, if only because of the paws with short, thick, blunt claws. His torso grew upwards just a faint amount more, and from just behind and below his original arms, grew a second pair. All four arms grew thick and furry, muscled and capable, as the rest of his body proportioned itself out a magnitude better.

His lower half was relatively horse sized, his upper shaped as if someone took a body-builder and made him both hairy, monstrous, and with a ‘crown’ of antlers thick enough to put an actual moose to relative shame.

Jericho reared back, twisting to reverse his position as his forelegs passed over the heads of the nearby capes easily, planting back onto the concrete below as a small space formed around him, he reached out, moving quickly as he shuffled some people out of the way, grabbed Jasmin, Seraphim, Chryssopea, and Sandstorm up into his arms, setting Chryssopea and Seraphim on his centaurid half as he turned and shouted with a voice that roared into the following silence of Tangle’s own screeching. The word hissed during the beginning, like a serpents’ call before rumbling and roaring out clearly despite the non-human maw it leapt from.

SCATTER!!!

Before making past anyone else in his way, getting the five of them as far back and away from tangle as possible. He took a sharp left turn once he cleared the parking lot, once he cleared the buildings directly adjacent to the crowd, ducking behind a three story and stretching his arms upward to knock out two second story windows with a branching pair of bone-clubs that sprouted from each radii, latching the appendages there and holding on tightly. The clubs then became hands, swirling with ink during the short transformation, before grabbing the bottom of broken window sills, more hands and arm like structures sprouted and grabbed the other edges. Secured. The hands that held Jasmin and Sandstorm stretched higher still placing them on the roof of the building while Jericho’s torso turned around entirely and spoke to Chryssopea and Seraphim. “Up? Yes or no? I’ll leave this body here as a stairway regardless... If Tangle doesn’t come here.

He didn’t wait for an answer, choosing instead to focus on the entirety of the form he was utilizing. Every muscle, bone, fiber of hair, nerve, ounce of fat, all of it he dedicated to memory. He dedicated it to permanency, before a portion of his torso fell over and to the side, his hind legs bending so that the farthest back end was sloped towards the ground. A relatively normal sized, human torso sized, bulge moved through the bulk of the centaurid half. A human sized Jericho stepped out from the still straightened forelegs, before shifting into a smaller, eagle-sized form. Skyblue and white feathers sprouted into existence, before being replaced by a sporting of plumage that seemed to shift color spontaneously.

He took off, rising up into the air before continuing to soar higher and higher still. The crowd of capes back at the HQ had indeed done what he had shouted, and as he focused on the scene below him, Jericho relaxed. If only for a short moment, before remembering that Tangle was an absolute threat. Something that he knew, deep in his core, in his very being, he couldn’t hurt. Nothing he had, nothing he could’ve thought to grow or utilize, would actually hurt the Abhorrent. He couldn’t get close, he couldn’t stay far enough away... He was helpless and useless.

..... Jasmin, or Sähkö as she was now wearing her mask, stepped onto the roof of the building that Jericho had brought her to and surveyed the scene with quiet horror, throwing up the hood of her blue hoodie. She watched as capes that presumably could survive close proximity to Tangle rushed forwards down the street, in attempt to stop the beast before he rushed into the crowd of more squishy parahumans. Then, a white line seared across her vision, leaving a black-fading-purple blind spot in her eyes. Immediately, she heard an artificial-esque feminine voice, similar to Siri or Alexa, speak from her new wristband, "Freischütz down. Laser Hawk down." Sähkö whipped her vision over to where Capetown's HLA team had been huddled. Already Cosmic's spheres and Tendril's tentacles were being thrown up as shields, but Sähkö could clearly make out a place where molten concrete was. Presumably, Freischütz and Laser Hawk had been standing near each other. Elicitor was also right in the middle of the molten concrete, though Tendril was already lifting him up and out of it before any secondary damage could be done.
..... The female artificial voice started naming off more names, before Jasmin could even react to Tangle rushing forward and swiping his tail through a building and into a crowd of capes, like massive steel pipey-wires, destroying all in the tail's path. "Intellast down. Pluto down. Kuro-Yūrei down. Thirty-seven in critical condition. Two-hundred-and-ten capes with radiation poisoning." Jasmin balked at what she had just seen go down, and they were only a minute into the fight. Sheetrock, bricks, rust, and dust rained down on the crowd as the building collapsed. Jasmin noticed that concrete everywhere was crackling and crumbling as creeper vines sprouted, pushing cement apart. Metal streetlights instantly turned into rust, and crumbled like sandstone Jasmin used to crush with her hands at playgrounds when she was little. Loud explosions rang out as Suit and hundreds of other tinkers launched rockets and threw bombs. Lasers bounces off of tangle, but plasma and particle beams seared a paper-thin layer of the beast's skin. An unimaginable amount of cape attacks were being launched at range, with a few capes immune to his radiation aura closing in for close-combat.
..... "What can I even do to help?" Jasmin asked to herself, incredulously.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Logan "Shatterstrike" Hartigen Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape)

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Sept. 14th, 2017 - 8:48 AM
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The engines of the private jet gently thrummed as it glided through the air, a calm reprise from the chaos that Maxwell Landon had crawled out of. He slowly rolled the light brown liquid around the tumbler he had in hand, admiring the way the light glinted in it. "Bit early to be enjoying that isn't it sir?" The words came from Willoughby, a tall, stocky African American man with albinism, who sat next to his twin brother, Ulysses. They both wore the exact same outfit; an oddly cyan colored business suit jacket and matching pants, white dress shirt, white leather shoes, and a cyan blue tie in a Windsor knot. The brothers looked intently to their boss, the one thing that took top priority for them in this world.

The silver haired man continued to stare at the glass. "It's a mourning drink." The pun came out in an entirely neutral tone, his face unchanged. "A toast, to what has been lost." Maxwell turned to meet the gaze of the twins, raising the glass to them. "To life, death, and rebirth." He took a sip of the scotch before setting it down on a table next to him, then looked out the window next to him. "You'll both have to forgive me if I seem like I'm not taking this well. But you're both well aware of how I feel about theft, the absolute insult that it is. And The Union... That is possibly the greatest theft, the greatest insult, I have ever been made to endure."

The two men sat quietly for a moment. "To rebirth then, sir." Ulysses said neutrally. Maxwell nodded, with a sigh and a slight smile. Willoughby spoke up again. "We'll be in Texas soon sir. We already have some supplies and equipment in transit to the property, so work can begin in hopefully no more than a day or two." Their boss nodded once more to them. As the flight continued, his mind poured over ideas and plans for the future. Maxwell Landon was far from done.

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Outskirts of Capetown, Texas. Sept. 14th, 2017 - 1:38 PM
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Maxwell's plane had landed a short while ago at a private airstrip, where was met by a limo which took him and the twins to the rural outskirts of Capetown. After about a 15 minute drive, they had reached the Ranch he had purchased several days ago. It had been a lucky find, and a quick sale, the owner was wanting to move away to an area that was a little more quiet than what Capetown had become. The rancher watched as a silver haired man stepped out of the sleek looking limo, followed by two large, pale men wearing oddly colored suits. He was a little confused by the whole thing, but money was money, so he wasn't about to kick up a fuss.

Maxwell walked over to introduce himself. "Mr. Manion, pleased to finally meet you." The rancher smiled and nodded as they both shook hands. "Likewise Mr. Landon. I hope you don't mind my asking, but ah... Are you really ready for this?" Maxwell gave a polite grin. "I might be a city boy Mr. Manion, but I'm no stranger to hard work. It'll be good for me I think, little quieter than being in the city at least." The rancher gave a nod before they both finally sat down and quickly signed the documents for ownership.

After only a few minutes, the two men shook hands, took their copies of the paperwork, and said their farewells. "Well Mr. Landon, I wish you luck here. Capetown can be a crazy place sometimes. Hope you know what you're in for." Maxwell gave an appreciative smile. "Fortunately I do Mr. Manion, it takes a lot to scare me off. But I do appreciate the thought. Take care of yourself." The old rancher nodded back in appreciation as well before getting into his truck and driving off. Everything had already been moved out in advance, Maxwell had the entire property to himself now.

"Willoughby, Ulysses, let the workers know when they get here that they can start working immediately. The temp house first, then they can work on the rest." Maxwell pulled a cigarette out, lighting it with a silver lighter before taking a few long drags. Time to rebuild again.

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Outskirts of Capetown, Texas. Sept. 20th, 2017 - 10:03 AM
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Maxwell had been up since about 7am this morning, enjoying coffee, a decent breakfast, and enjoying the new view as he kept up on the news. The first day he'd been on the Ranch, the workers built him a 'temporary house' with all glass walls. It was a specially designed 'desert house' that managed to keep the temperature pretty well, and still allow privacy despite the glass walls. It was aesthetic to him, and that's mostly what mattered.

There was plenty on the news about the events of yesterday. Power outages from a cape, and a very strange 'creature' that had attacked the bank. Whatever that thing was, Maxwell found himself quite... Fascinated by it, and the power outage for that matter. His mind became a whirlwind of possibilities, ideas, and ambition. Maxwell had just started on a cigarette when his phone began to go wild, a strange beeping coming from it, which was when he caught the distant sound of air raid sirens.

There was a loud thudding sound as Willoughby and Ulysses rushed through the door and into the glass house."Sir. It's an abhorrent." They both spoke gravely. Maxwell looked between the two of them for a moment, a silent pause hung in the air, almost louder than the blaring ring of his phone, or the distant air raid sirens. Finally, a grin began to form on Maxwell's face. "Perfect." Maxwell quickly opened steel crate that had been sitting in a side room, changing from his suit and into the black, ominous clothing of his new 'uniform'.

"Alright, we still have some of the drones, correct?" The two twins nodded. "Yes sir, seven." Willoughby replied. "Good. I want you to send all of them out to the city. Find some safe vantage points for them, and set them to a live feed. I want you both here recording everything that the cameras pick up." The two twins nodded. "Of course sir. What all do you want us to record sir? Just the Abhorrent?" Maxwell smiled, shaking his head.

"No, record EVERYTHING. The Abhorrent, the Capes, and anything else that happens. I don't want you to miss a thing. That's why I want the live feed; we can lose the drones, but we cannot lose the footage." Ulysses nodded and spoke up. "We'll get it done sir." Maxwell nodded to them as he placed his mask upon his head finally. "Good. Gentlemen, what happens today may very well become part of research and development for us. Let's hope for a good show."

Maxwell started to leave before one of them spoke up. "Sir, are you... Certain that this is a good idea? The odds of death-" The Shape raised a hand to halt any further comment. "Business, life, power itself. It's all about risk. You don't take them, you get no payoffs, and you stay stagnant, weak, mediocre. I refuse to be mediocre." He turned to face them again, the ominous white mask hiding any semblance of the human wearing it. "Rebirth gentlemen." And with that, Maxwell made his way to the city.

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Capetown, Texas. Sept. 20th, 2017 - 10:40 AM
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Maxwell had made it to the outskirts of the crowd of capes only a few minutes ago, and things were already starting to get tense. He was somewhat worried about all the capes here, but being on the outskirts meant he had more freedom to move out quickly if need be. The Triumvirate was on scene, and their little drones were flying around, attaching to people's arms. Maxwell did not like that one bit, but it was hard to say where this was going as of yet. At least he was on 'radio silence'. The twins would be able to work on their own without direction from him, for now, he just had to stay focused on what he could learn from the ground level.

He let the drone in front of him finally attach to his arm. If it became a problem and came down to it, he'd saw his arm off and get a tinker to make him a new one.

"How long does it usually take before we start getting information? I almost expect a riot simply because of the collectively anxiety."

Maxwell turned to face a glossy black looking figure. He was a little surprised the man was speaking to him, though perhaps under these dire circumstances it was normal to make conversation even with total strangers.

"Sorry friend, but this is probably as new to me as it is to you." He spoke with a mildly friendly tone. Finally Legend, one of the Triumvirate, began his 'heroic' and 'empowering' speech, which became much less of the two when he began to give the audience of capes the actual information on the Abhorrent.

"I suppose we both have our answer now." Maxwell said to the other cape. He stayed facing towards Legend himself, but Maxwell's eyes occasionally glanced over the strange exterior of the man next to him. It was rather fascinating he had to admit, perhaps even impressive. Certainly it would be interesting to see how this man fared in real combat...

Legend had finally wrapped up his speech before the crowd was met with the sound of violent destruction. Tangle was here. "Show time." Maxwell whispered to himself, grinning under his mask as he broke into a sprint towards some of the surrounding buildings, further away from the Abhorrent.

Having made it rather quickly around the mass of people running in panic, The Shape had made it up into an office building, having climbed a few stories and now peering out at the chaos in the streets from a window. He watched, waited, and tried to learn as everything unfolded. The thing on his arm kept alerting him about capes going down, obtaining injuries, etc. This thing was dangerous, absolutely no doubt about that. On one hand, it was a bit frustrating, how powerful and insurmountable it seemed. On the other hand... It was inspiring. For now, Maxwell waited and watched, curious what Tangle would do, and equally as curious what the capes were going to do.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jasmin Lehtinen (Sähkö) Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black Character Portrait: Kayle Tallion (Twisted Smile) Character Portrait: Lucas Eklund (Chrysopoeia) Character Portrait: Vic Martel (Nobody) Character Portrait: Logan "Shatterstrike" Hartigen Character Portrait: Nova Edinger Character Portrait: Victor "LTL" Stellianos Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape)

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The atmosphere was anything but pleasant. Even as someone who could influence others emotions on a mass scale, this was something that put even Kayle on edge. Everyone looked ready to fight, but not necessarily the Abhorrent. Glances, deliberate stares, feigned insults and threatening physical postures. Villains, vigilantes and heroes alike all crowded into a space with their potentially worst enemies outside of genocidal monsters of nightmares. Already people were feeling the friction, emotion taking over logic in a bid for immediate satisfaction. Kayle’s eyes floated over them, watching as the fight was broken up and only barely paying attention to the briefing that the ‘best of the best’ were giving them. In fact, it took him longer than he would have liked to notice the box floating in front of him with what appeared to be a bracelet of some sort. Looking around, he saw nearly everyone donning it, lawful and evil alike. He didn’t like the idea of wearing anything made by someone who, on any other day, would most likely be hunting him down, but this was a different situation.

Once it attached itself to his arm, he rubbed it slightly but didn’t find that it was heavy or otherwise in the way. It did seem to be a mixture of tracking and communication device, which made Kayle even more uneasy, but considering the chaos that was about to unfold, he couldn’t fault them for wanting some way to coordinate with the superhumans here. Looking back at the four ‘veterans’ so to speak addressing the crowd, he couldn’t help but feel some anxiety. Now, he had been asked more than a few times in a couple different situations, ‘Aren’t you afraid?’. Even in a situation like this, where death was more likely than survival, and survival was not technically ‘alive’, he couldn’t say that he was. Anxiety, impatience, a small amount of anger, but fear? He couldn’t say that he was afraid of the abhorrent, more akin to annoyed by it. Which struck even Kayle as odd as he reflected inwardly for a moment.

He remembered the conversation he had with the changer just moments ago, and found himself wondering why, at this specific time, he had chosen that route over outright ignorance? Maybe he was more prideful than he liked to admit. Why, at this specific time, he looked at others with contempt rather than compassion or understanding. Maybe he was more closed off than he liked to admit. He closed his eyes for a moment, breathing slowly and bringing himself back in line with his mentality, that of someone who would take that extra step when no one else would. Morality be damned, he had a job to do.

When Legend started talking more about the abhorrent, he realized his chances of being able to do something to the creature itself dropped to zero. With the radiation threat, not only would his chains refuse to manifest in any proper capacity, due to a weakness to radiation he found out a couple years ago against a particularly nasty villain, but with a limited time frame to find his doc after contact, the radiation itself would most likely kill him before he could do anything. Everything else was more or less in the realm of possibility to deal with though. The ability to control light made things a bit difficult, but if you were 75 feet tall with a tail spanning several dozen city blocks, being invisible didn’t really help much.

Kayle cracked his knuckles, one at a time out of a sense of keeping his hands busy. He wouldn’t be able to fight Tangle directly, but he could keep the plants at bay, prevent collateral damage and escort any potential injured capes or civilians away from the fight. He would have to be mindful of the radiation aura though, the closer he got the less effective he would be. That could be said for any number of capes, but for him especially. To be honest, having heard about it now, Kayle couldn’t help but feel a sense of uselessness wash over him as he realized he wasn’t going to necessarily be part of the effort pushing Tangle back. He bit the inside of his cheek a bit, more out of indignity than anything else.

As if the whole thing had been rehearsed, the moment Legend was done filling them in, the sound of destruction forced everyone’s head to whip to the source. There, somehow appearing as if from thin air, Tangle sat like a budding flower filled with murderous intent. Like some scene out of a monster movie, it turned to face them, unleashing a shriek that made even Kayle wince in pain at the thought of it. Instantly capes were moving to perform whatever tasks they thought they could do, while Kayle was part of the group running away. His chains burst from his form, impacting the ground and lifting him into the air as he propelled himself away from the conflict. Not necessarily because he was afraid, but because as he thought earlier, the radiation would render his abilities useless.

As he was floating through the air on his spider leg chains, he noticed that while some were rushing forward, others were running away, there was a group of capes standing still and not doing a damn thing in any capacity. Normally, Kayle would have chastised such behaviour. Villain or hero, this kind of thing came with the territory, but not even Kayle could fault them for being shocked into a standstill at the sight of Tangle. In fact, it was the very changer that Kayle had insulted and essentially mocked that made the first move. Picking him out of the crowd wasn’t hard as his ability to shift was...not exactly pleasant on the eyes. Having picked up some people, screaming at them to scatter. Whatever his opinions on the man, he wasn’t wrong.

Being someone capable of doing something in that instance, chains launched themselves towards the group that was still watching Tangle with nothing but either shock or fascination, grabbing as many people as he could before moving all of them a few blocks back. There was no preference in his actions, simply taking anyone who was standing still. Once he placed everyone down, he launched himself into the air again. This time, he took up a stance at roughly 4 stories, watching the ensuing chaos with a sense of anxiety once more. He wanted to do something, but like always, his logical side won out as he found himself simply watching for an opportunity.

It was then that a voice came from the bracelet. Looking over, listening as it listed names and statuses. So that’s what it was for. A way for people to realize just how powerful, and fruitless, this was ultimately going to be.

You didn’t need to have an empathy aura to know this wasn’t going to inspire confidence.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Legend (The Triumvirate)

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#, as written by Tanman
◄:Terry ‘Tess’ Farina:►
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Tess listened intently to Legend’s advice and rundown regarding Tangle, most of it general information she’d heard before, but having the specifics in mind would be important for the future. She had no metal on her, so she’d be safe to get to almost 100ft before being impacted by the Abbhorent’s aura. Well, safe was a stretch. The difference between 100ft to 200ft wasn’t much when considering how fast Tangle could move. Ideally, she wouldn’t want to be anywhere near Tangle anyway. Given how tough Tangle was, Tess was highly doubtful that her energy blades – Even at their maximum output – would be able to cut something like that. Part of her wondered how her powers would interact with the radiation and light alteration effects Tangle was capable of, but at this stage, she was more concerned with staying alive and doing what she could rather than testing her limits. She was quick and nimble - and as she’d just recently worked out - capable of teleporting herself and others. That would be her goal. Rescuing those that got injured, or any stray civilians still caught out on the surface.

No sooner had Tess decided what action to take then all hell broke loose. She’d expected more warning, more of a signal or go sign as they knew where Tangle was coming from and someone had to have been watching it, right? But no. Tangle broke through a building, still a somewhat sizeable distance away, roaring so loud that every thought left Tess’ head as it rattled through her mind. Then it started coming, and the world fell into chaos. Capes rushed past Tess, both forwards and back. Roughly, Tess felt an arm on her shoulder and a voice in her ear, and then, she was moving. “God your hopeless! This is exactly why I didn’t want to come here! We’re probably going to get in the way more than help anything!” Marcy’s voice rang loud and clear as Tess followed after her, sticking to the crowd of capes moving in the opposite direction. Were they fleeing? Well... Yes and no. Repositioning to better use their abilities, maybe? At least getting out of the line of fire as Capes with far better ranged abilities began launching munitions and beams and blasts at the approaching monster. Unsurprisingly, Tangle didn’t even seem to flinch, and one by one, names began getting listed off. Dead. Gone. Tess was seized with terror, but her legs didn’t stop thanks to Marcy’s guidance.

Stumbling into a clearing and getting a moment to catch her breath, Marcy was the first to speak, her attention on Tess, but at the same time, her eyes constantly flitted back to the abomination that was Tangle. “So what now genius? I don’t have any combat abilities, and you can’t go anywhere near that thing, so we’re essentially dead weight. Can we leave now?” Urging her friend once more, Marcy hoped that the gravity of the situation was finally beginning to crush Tess’ optimism. And on some level, it certainly had shaken her to her core. But she wasn’t giving up. Even though she was terrified, she’d made a promise to herself that she was going to start acting more like a hero. She had a power to do something. She was going to use it to make a difference.

“Marcy, I’m going to get behind Tangle and start surveying the damaged area. There might be people we can save, and if we work back towards Tangle we might be able to help injured capes left behind. Are you coming?” Tess gestured out down the road, her voice wavering only slightly to betray how nervous she was. Marcy stared in stunned silence a moment before giving an exasperated growl. “Ugh, fine, you go do that. I’ll… Find wherever they’re setting up emergency treatment and see what I can do to help. I’ll… Clear room for the people you bring back or something.” Tess smiled at Marcy, nodding as she turned and began focusing on making a new portal. “Alright. I’ll try to warp in above the general area. See if you can flag me down so I know where you are.” With the plan formally settled on, Tess made a single vertical slice with her light-blade, nodding to Marcy before stepping through. Reappearing far down the street behind Tangle, Tess immediately began surveying the area for signs of life. It wasn’t pretty, but she could certainly make out sounds and signs of movement amongst the rubble and smoke.

Running forward, Tess only got a few steps closer to a nearby figure before stopping, her instincts flaring up as she leapt to the side and narrowly avoided a thorny appendage slamming into the ground next to her. Taking a moment to regard her foe, it was vaguely humanoid, but seemed to be made of thick, coiled and interconnected vines or branches. No doubt one of those plant minions Legend had spoken about earlier. As the next swipe came towards Hush, the heroine deftly ducked, moving in and slicing the appendage clean off, a heat seared mark burning right through the plant where it had been severed. Happy with her success, Tess was caught off guard as the creature’s other arm immediately struck her in the stomach, winding the girl as she was knocked back. Gasping for air, Tess quickly realised her mistake. She’d expected that thing to react with pain or acknowledge the injury, but it wasn’t really conscious it seemed. They were minions built to serve one purpose, and that was to eliminate capes and other stragglers left in Tangle’s wake. Grimacing as she got back to her feet, Tess wasn’t going to let her inexperience stop her. She wasn’t going to become another casualty. She’d be a hero.

Setting

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#, as written by Lin
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The caped man (Legend, Ace whispered to me) gave them the odds of coming out of this alive and just what they would be fighting. Her lips pursed as she brows furrowed. She thought the chances would be slightly higher. The more she heard of about Tangle, the more she wanted to just run away. They probably couldn’t kill it. Even without thinking too much into it, Mara knew that there was a very high chance she could die from this attack. Her power had never failed to keep her injuries to a minimum at least. Lasers could probably be absorbed, but radiation? She didn’t want to try it. Radiation was what she was most terrified of. She didn’t think she could block it with her shield, and she would die. Ace didn’t have a shield, and he would also die.

It was terrifying...that Ace would be gone from her life. She didn't want this.

Mara harshly bunched the bottom of Ace's shirt into her small fist. She didn't want this.

She could feel it, the danger. It's coming.

CRASH!!!

The monster that crashed into their area immediately after Legend finished his overview of Tangle. Mara felt herself being scooped up by her brother’s trembling arms as she heard a roar. Everything seemed to slow down, everything was a blur, it was chaos.

SCATTER!!!

If possible, that roar made the situation even more terrifying as time shifted into a faster pace.

"Freischütz down. Laser Hawk down." It was ending. "Intellast down." There were people dead already. "Thirty-seven in critical condition. Two-hundred-and-ten capes with radiation poisoning." Eveyone was dying. Things were disentegrated into nothing, people were screaming, others fell without a sound. Couldn't she do anything?! If only she cou-

. . . Piiiiiiiiiii. There lied the Black siblings of Capetown, side by side. Mara didn't know what happened, but she saw her brother's terrified face as the high pitched sound persisted in her ears and a murky robotic voice called out...

"Wind Breaker down."

It was hard to breathe and hard to see, but she could at least move her eyes down to her brother's non-existence body. She could feel the pressure building up in her chest, that emotion she hadn't felt in so long. Her mouth opened, but no sound emerged as her silent tears rolled sideways and dripped to the ground. Mara could feel the large ball of blue gas hovering around her, waiting to be released at an enemy.

But she didn't want to live anymore.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black

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The battlefield was a chaotic mess. There were capes leaping, sprinting, jumping and every other form of locomotion in between from one spot to another. Some disappeared within the moments between the brain asking the eyelid to blink, others were swept aside as easily as one might sweep aside dust from a table. Every now and then, really frequently if honesty ever came into question, Tangle's massive maw would abruptly jerk to one side as Legend rammed a fist, elbow or knee into the monstrosities' "face".

From above, Jericho felt a pit in his stomach forming. Panic was rising, a sort of unrecognized anxiety pressing for a chance to just get the fuck away from this. The anxiety was blasted away by an immediate shout of surprised pain. A line of blue-black-rainbow color seared it's way across his vision, and blinking did nothing to resolve the blind-spot. So, Jericho did what he thought would work best... Dissolved the offended and-or broken organs and reformed new ones in their places. From around the shoulder of one wing, the bracelet-monitor-thing recited the names of the now fallen. Jericho didn't listen, no good could come from tuning into- "Wind Breaker down. Jumpstart down. Magnum Vapor down."

"Ah... Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck!" Came the panicked response, leaping from Jericho's beak before he had time to even realize that he'd formed a mouth within to speak outwardly with. His focus then locked onto a small figure, a child? Laying still on the ground beside what was once probably another cape. Was once definitely another cape, another person.
Holy shit.
The kid, a girl by the looks of the hair- a young girl at that- was surrounded by... Some sort of bubble. A cobalt blue gas of some kind, hovering in a slow- or was it fast?- moving sphere around her. Was that her power? Was she powered?! Did she know that corpse? Er, person? Shit.

"This is real. Oh. Oh shit. Okay... Okay move. Move." Muttered the Changer, twisting in on himself as he dove towards the ground beak-first. He took note of other capes moving as he dove, and just barely in view as he sped toward the ground, was the 'bat-man' that Jericho had not but just moments ago been arguing with. He looked... Pensive? The moment passed.

Jericho felt his wings flare open, felt the shoulders of his form tearing, tearing, ripping, and then stabilizing as he came to a unsteady- and swift- glide just above the molten concrete. The multitude of eyes upon his skull remained, though all were quickly covered by a clear, nigh invisible cap of carapace. He pulled up and back, felt his shoulders and wings straining against inertia before settling without breaking once again. Jericho came to a stop then, landed right beside the girl surrounded in cobalt gas. A sparing moment was spent considering the possible risk to his life... Before he reached out on impulse and picked the child up, his form swirling as it reverted back to a stark nude humanoid shape akin to a Ken doll. The child was light, almost surprisingly so, and otherwise slack and limp in his arms, continuing staring at-
"Oh fuck..." The gruesome sight before her.

Jericho's voice fell to a whisper, just barely loud enough for basically no one except whoever was closest; that being the girl cradled in his arms. "Shit. Okay. Lets get you out of here. Um... Fuck. Please don't be dead too. Fuck. Fuck fuck fuck." He ramble-whispered as he turned, mind racing and mouth running continuously as his form shifted once again. The girl went from being cradled in appendages to cradled in what could've been easily described as a harness.

As Jericho began running, his form bent over double- the girl moving from arms to a large, thick rib-cage that sprang upward from just above the pelvis like a catcher's mitt in baseball. Ink swirled out from bone and flesh, spreading over the unresponsive girl's form before stretching out along the spaces between each rib. It quickly, surely became transparent and solid, sturdy despite it's clarity. The humanoid form swirling with ink right along with the growth of the 'harness' of bone and carapace. A large, scaled torso took shape, following the formation of a quartet of sturdily built horse-like legs in a sort of spider-esque positioning below. Instead of hooves, the legs ended in disgustingly muscled bird-claws, though they were furred, and the talons were thick and seemingly blunt.

The form moved in a sort of skittering gait, rapid despite the fair amount of bulk, and additional passenger. Jericho kept mumbling to himself, his skull having changed into that of a deer's with the flesh removed. The crown of eyes remained, having stayed in place despite the change between three different forms. Even though the eyes were there, Jericho didn’t pay attention to the buildings around him, taking no note as to how they were becoming more and more ruined as he proceeded in escaping the ‘main battlefield’.

He had lost track of how many turns he had taken within no time at all, having only done what he could to get the girl as far away from the fighting as he could. Rounding another corner, Jericho shrieked, cursed, and then retreated back the way he came before peering back around.

There, in the alleyway, was the girl from the bank, the one who had kicked him in the eye. Fighting against some planty-thing no less. From behind him, he could hear the sounds of fighting, and Tangle screeching every now and then... Which, didn't seem right. Had he taken the child closer to the fight? The thoughts were scrambled away as he took note of his surroundings, finally.

He had moved parallel to Tangle. Running a couple of streets over and alongside the beast for a quick few moments. He had made headway, just had not realized just how much headway that really equated to. Jericho took quick glance about for more creatures, minions, whatever; before the legs of the form squatted down. He turned, facing the clear harness towards the wall of a nearby building to hide the child carried within, before straining against himself for all of a second.

A humanoid figure leapt from the scaled back of the odd crab-taur-thing he had taken the shape of. Jericho, now once again human in form, immediately began shifting once he hit the air. He reverted back to a familiar form, the wendigo shape he took way, way back when, at the “Which Wich”. Though now he was fed, and taking a swipe with a claw that was far meatier and sharper than it had been once before. His bulk landed with a thump and a 'whumpf' of air, pivoting on the spot upon touchdown. A quick huff of exertion leapt from his maw, shoving the plant-human into a nearby wall and pinning it there. He felt, rather than saw, the immediate thrashing and bashing of thorny ‘appendage’ on his skull and shoulders, ripping a whining growl out of the changer as he formed a mouth upon his right-hand ribs.
Cut it, cut it, please CUT IT RIGHT NOW.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush)

0.00 INK

#, as written by Tanman
◄:Terry ‘Tess’ Farina:►
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Her body was moving and reacting before her brain had caught up. Tess shifted to the side, eyes tracing to the blurry black figure leaping in from her peripheral vision to- No, it wasn’t aimed at her. The hulking figure was familiar as it clawed into the plant-monster that had engaged her, buckling the concrete around it as the weight of its landing and force of its impact threw dust into the air. Tess felt herself seizing up as realisation dawned on her, but immediately, she corrected her stance. She wasn’t Tess right now. She was Hush. There was no way ‘Wendigo’ knew who she was; it had to be a coincidence. It didn’t matter what he had done either, this was an abhorrent attack. They were all on the same side here. This was about survival, nothing else.

“Cut it, cut it, please CUT IT RIGHT NOW.” As the changer formed a mouth to call for her assistance, Hush nodded through her mask, her moment of hesitation gone. Without a word, she made her approach, sliding underneath Wendigo as she cleaved clean through the bottom torso of the plant monster, the lower half crumpling to the ground and thankfully remaining unmoving as its upper limbs continued to thrash and strike at Wendigo. However it was being controlled, it had to be located somewhere in the upper part of its body. Realising this, Hush pivoted once more, her hand hooking around a portion of Wendigo’s body as she flipped up into the air. Moving cleanly like an expert gymnast, she quickly landed astride his back as she mounted his shoulder.

“Release it!” Tess cried out, making no attempt to hide her voice as she commanded Wendigo to let it go lest she cut into the changer. In the instant the monster was dropped, Hush herself was leaping down from Wendigo’s shoulder, performing a cross slash through the beasts body and rolling to a stop not far from its remains. The singed flora made a faint sizzling noise as smoke drifted up from its body, but otherwise, it was unmoving. It may not have had any vitals to speak of, but somewhere in there she must have severed the link it had to Tangle. She’d done it! She’d taken one out! Her elation thankfully masked behind her helmet, Hush turned back towards Wendigo, giving a nod of approval as way of thanks. Still, there was little chance for celebration. She could hear and see much more movement all about the broken streets and buildings. This was but one of many of these things. However, she’d learned a lot from this first encounter. She was confident she could try to hold her own.

“There’s more coming. I plan to take the fight to them.” Hush spoke, turning to look towards Wendigo once more. Hopefully the mask was helping to muffle her voice and he hadn’t recognised her... Not wanting to sit still for too long, Tess began to make her way forward again. This wasn’t the time for idle chit-chat. If Wendigo had anything more to say to her, he could ask it while they moved. She couldn’t stop. She had to keep fighting and make a difference. There had to be people she could save. She wasn’t going to be a spectator.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jasmin Lehtinen (Sähkö) Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Alexander Dalton Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black Character Portrait: Kayle Tallion (Twisted Smile) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Vic Martel (Nobody) Character Portrait: Nova Edinger Character Portrait: Victor "LTL" Stellianos Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape)

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Maxwell watched as the chaos unfolded in the streets. The battle, for all intents and purposes, was not going well. Capes, Villains, Vigilantes, they all got batted away like flies. "So much for the unspoken rules." He smirked, though more out of disdain for the concept, but it soon faded. No sense in endangering himself over the matter. As the chaos ensued though, something caught his eye, over on the streets. At first it looked like two children, but in a mere moment it became only one. The little girl laid there for a moment, Maxwell felt a slight sensation of... Pity? Or perhaps just familiarity, but he felt it all the same.

"Poor thing... Still a mere child and the world has already robbed you." He contemplated going down to help, but his thoughts were quickly put aside. The... 'Thing' from the TV, or so it seemed to be it, had dropped down to the pavement to quickly grab the girl and run off. "This... May be a more interesting day than I had originally expected." A slight grin grew on The Shape's face.

The windows beside Maxwell exploded as a shower of glass was thrown across the room, a brief moment of colorful bliss as the sun glinted off the fragments. The Shape had thrown himself to the ground, rolling back as far away from the windows as he could, looking back up just in time to see a piece of sidewalk fall from the window frame, down to the ground below. Turned out Tangle had a pretty good throw too. One more thing to keep in mind. Before anything else got thrown his way, Maxwell quickly made his way to an exit door, and quickly made his way down the stairs within. Elevator would be a death trap at this point.

Once he was back on the ground level, Maxwell burst through an emergency exit door and started running. He stuck to the back alleys for now as he tried to get an idea of what direction that thing from the news was running in.
"Gotta close this gap quick, before he makes any more distance." He didn't know much about whatever he was chasing after, but he knew that it could be fast, much faster than most humans on foot.

There. Maxwell managed to catch a glimpse of the thing turning down another street, so Maxwell ran out of the alleys and back onto the main streets. Some of Tangle's minions were running around, some engaged with capes, but others were not. No time to waste. Both his 87's were quickly in hand as Maxwell began to run through the crowd, careful not to get too close to the plant creatures. One of them jumped up towards him, too quick for him to get a shot immediately. He braced against the thing with his left arm, letting it grab him as he lifted his right up to put the barrel against the thing's head. One shot and it's head was burst apart, sending the thing to the ground writhing and flopping around.

Maxwell kept moving.

A few began to run towards him, two on his left, and one on his right. Aiming at the left two, he opened fire on their bodies, letting the bullets rip their flesh up till moving became impossible. Clicks sounded letting him know he needed to reload. Not enough time just yet. When the right one got close enough he dropped the pistols, flicked a knife out from his coat, and let it jump at him. The blade made it's way into the creature's neck, and Maxwell, started carving his way through. It kicked and flailed madly at him, almost knocking him to the ground, but he managed to decapitate it before it could overpower him. The Shape quickly picked up his guns again and kept moving, ejecting the magazines from his firearms before quickly reloading them. This time he moved even faster, he'd lost too much ground with the thing he was following, and couldn't lose any more.

In a few brief moments, The Shape had made it to the alley he'd seen the thing turn down, and upon rounding the corner was immediately met by a cape and some nightmarish looking creature. It was the thing he had decided to follow, and it... Had the girl inside of it? She seemed unharmed, but he was confused nonetheless. The cape there was a woman, a little taller than typical, wearing what appeared to be a motorcycle helmet.

Maxwell gave a slight nod to the group.
"Looks like we're all getting our workouts today huh?" He spoke with a slightly friendly tone, but despite the attempted joke, his voice carried more somber sympathy than anything else.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz)

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Up until the moment that the green portal dropped spewing forth an army headed by the Triumvirate it hadn't quite sunk in completely that this city would be plunged into chaos in just a few minutes. However with them present here, there was no longer any way to doubt, no possibility of a mistake, it was absolute certainty that pandora's box would be unleashed in the city.

Devon looked down at his belt and at the only clips of ammo he actually carried, bullets he never imagined to actually be using. Depleted uranium helix cored bullets, flying armor piercing drills made to never stop cutting deeper until they either are fully destroyed or run out of rotational momentum, the latter of which wouldn't happen in Freischütz hands. He grabbed one of the clips and swiftly loaded in his sniper rifle, looking back up just in time to notice one of Tinkers odd flying black boxes float above his head. The clip had barely been let go by his hand sent falling to the ground when the box charged at Devon's arm as if it had been overcome with impatience. As it landed on his arm with a thud it morphed into a black wristband, it wouldn't be much of a hindrance where it decided to attach itself, but he would have much preferred if it had attached itself to his upper arm. He gave his arm a little shake, balled up a fist and turned every which way he physically could, just to see if Tinker had thought to take muscle flex in account, and he had.

It was at this point that he tuned in on Legends speech which had taken the attention of most of the crowd around them. One in three dead, many more crippled, mangled or otherwise permanently wounded and pretty much everyone who engaged him would need radiation treatment, and that's what would be considered a good day. The history and biology lesson was a little less of interest, after all he had been doing his homework on all five of the abhorrents, all the while praying that that knowledge would never be called upon.

The moment Devon heard the sound of something very big hitting a building at speed he didn't waste any time whatsoever, he jumped into a full sprint snaking his way back through the building towards his bike. He jumped on his bike and twisted the throttle almost launching the bike from under him, launching himself and the bike upwards into the sky. As soon as he gained enough height to clear the next few buildings he whipped around to face Tangle with his sniper rifle, firing his first shot almost immediately as soon as the creature entered his sights. As per standard the bullet hit striking dead center on what one could consider the neck of snake, and what followed was a few short seconds of intense sparking and small bits of tissue and ichor flying outwards as the bullet drilled it's way into the beasts flesh.

Before the show of sparks ended Devon took aim to place a second shot right in the hole he had just dug into the tissue. However trying hit a pin point shot on an erratic moving object was a whole another thing than hitting the broad side of a barn. His second and third shot missed their marks, but both still having hit Tangle gave more targets to aim for. Feeling frustration take over Devon took a deep breath, activated the overdrive with his rifle and said to himself: "Breathe slowly with purpose, focus on that one point, that one possibility and forget everything around you." For a second after that his vitals stopped and everything moved as if time was itself was slowed to a crawl. He took aim and found the one moment where everything would line up perfectly, hitting the second impact site dead on. The bullet drilled itself only a slight bit further into the flesh before it too was chipped, burned and shaved to bits. It had burrowed it's way down through quite a few of the layers, but even then it was likely not even a mosquito bite to Tangle.

Immediately after he was pulled back into the world by his breathing kicking back in and causing a coughing fit, all the while the little metal wristband piped up "Freischütz down. Laser Hawk down." "Like hell *cough* I *cough* *cough* I am." He yelled back at the wristband.

He looked at the situation on the ground as he heard more and more names being called through the wristband, capes fleeing everywhere trying to escape from Tangle, the plants, crumbling buildings and the radiation, all the while doing whatever they could for any and all of the civilians caught outside, fighting off everything thrown at them or at least trying to. "God fucking damnit." He yelled from the top of his lungs as he noticed a couple capes being slammed against a building by one of Tangles plant minions, only to then motionlessly drop to the ground. "I should have fucking helped them, not trying to do the impossible."

He then threw his sniper rifle onto his back with such force that the leather strap creaked as it jerked against Devon's torso. He then grabbed the assault rifle, squeezing the trigger immediately as he arced it around to in front of him showering Tangles plant minions in a barrage of cryogenic ammo. "That should at least slow them down." He said as parts of the plants shattered as the frozen parts broke off. A few of them dropped on the spot, the others now missing limbs were engaged by other capes. Too dangerous to start spraying bullets with capes in melee range.

He twisted the throttle once more to find somewhere, something, someone where he could be of help. He didn't get very far though before one of the plant minions threw a stop sign at him, making it slam into the side of the bike with a nasty clank. Almost immediately Devon could tell that whatever had been hit was A: Not made to withstand taking hits, and B: quite important, as he felt the bike slow down and lose altitude. "Oh, you gotta be Fucking kidding me!" He screamed as his bike dipped below the roofs of the buildings around him. Slightly panicked by the quickly approaching ground he prayed that it would still turn into it's bike form and be able to roll out the impact. He steered towards one of the buildings flying along side it until 2 about stories above the ground and then shifted it back into bike mode while desperately steering and leaning so he could use the remaining horizontal speed for a wall ride and hopefully slow down his descent even a bit. At first it was quite successful as he dropped down another few feet at a much slower speed, however with the lower speed and hitting a windowsill with his back wheel he lost contact with the building and started to free fall again. With a slam his bike hit the pavement bottoming out it's suspensions and scraping some of the body panels across the ground. The suit fortunately protected Devon from the impact for the most part, though not something he'd like to try again in the near future.

When he slowly turned the throttle trying to drive away the engine made all kinds of sounds as if trying to tell it's owner that it wasn't in the greatest shape anymore. "Great, now I've lost the only advantage I had over that fucking plant bastard." As he drove around through the mostly destroyed streets showering Tangle's minions here and there the engine started to sound worse and worse, and the same could be said about the speed he was driving. The increasing activity of minions though told him he was heading back towards the fray, to where he might be able to help somehow.

Then he noticed the shapeshifter from 'wich wich' at least he assumed so given rather morbid shapeshifting, he was accompanied by another cape at least he assumed she was a cape, because she was headed right into the direction of where he could hear sounds of Legend and likely some other capes duking it out with Tangle. Opting not to push his bike to destruction, at least not completely he slowed down, jumped off and before the bike was at a complete standstill threw down the kickstand. It scraped across the ground for a moment all the while Devon pulled the key from the ignition and quickly put it back in his pocket. He then ran towards the two capes assault rifle drawn expecting more of the minions to be right around any corner or just about to jump out of the buildings. If anything tagging along with those two would be better than wandering around on his own. "Sir, miss, I would urge you to be careful if you are heading that way. You'll be heading directly towards where Legend is currently engaging Tangle."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jericho Amile (Wendigo/Ghoul) Character Portrait: Terry 'Tess' Farina (Hush) Character Portrait: Devon Metzger(freischütz) Character Portrait: Maxwell Landon (The Shape)

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#, as written by Lin
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During her first moments back into reality, Mara’s body was jerked to the left side in one swift movement. The moment her eyes peaked open, she realized that someone was carrying her. Her Butterflies were near her, but she could feel that there was a barrier. They were still above her, she still had control. Mara’s head lulled from side to side and realized that she was inside of some sort of ugly and non-existent animal. She felt like with a reckless driver. Wait. No, this presence was familiar…

Wendigo…? Why is he here? Ace? Ace was…

A vision of her brother’s lifeless eyes flashed at the back of her mind. No! Mara covered her eyes and squeezed her eyes shut, but the picture just became more vivid. His missing bottom half. His bloodied body. His unmoving eyes, staring into nothing. His smile wasn’t there. He wasn’t here.

He’s not here! Stupid! Stop, stop, stop stop.

“Cut it, cut it, please CUT IT RIGHT NOW.”

Mara gasped in surprise and looked up, now watching Wendigo and a lady defeat an ugly-looking monster. She could see his fur, the very same one from the poor sandwich shop that Ace took her to. It looked so soft… It didn’t fail to captivate her once again.

Save… save people.

Yeah, that’s what Ace would say. Help as many people as you can. If Ace can’t do it right now, then she had to. She had to help as many people as she could. The image of Ace’s lifeless eyes crossed her mind again. Mara had to do it. She could help. Somehow. Her eyes drifted to the lady in the helmet. A good fighter with great instincts, but no ability? Or maybe she didn’t use her ability?

“There’s more coming. I plan to take the fight to them.” The lady said and started to move again. Before she could get far, someone else ran into the alley. Two someone elses, actually. A hero and a vigilante? Probably not a hero, but his comment seemed friendly even though it didn't really apply to her. She didn’t use her powers today, she didn’t run, and was currently sitting inside of Wendigo. That hero was definitely from the poor sandwich shop. How could she forget when Ace was about to act as an off-duty hero, only for an on-duty hero to show up.

Forgetting that Ace was... gone.. for just a while, she would focus on helping this group fight whatever they need to fight.

Okay, Mara, she mouthed to herself, Just help them with whatever. Focus.

She would join Ace after she helped with the invasion. He would be proud of her.

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