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Avenger Assembled

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  • Birthday 11/10/1981

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  1. Ashley gave Claude a blank look, looking for all the world as if she'd never seen him before in her life, then turned questioningly to Judy. The latter made a small noise in the back of her throat - then spoke. "Well bless your heart, Ah'm sure," she said diplomatically as she locked her gaze on Claude's, "but Ah can see mah sister and Ah would just be a distraction for you boys. Danica's mah friend and so is Micah, and Ah wouldn't want anything to keep him from getting his work done for her." She smiled winningly at Nick and said, "Ah'll see you later, Nick, and we can talk some then." The two sisters went to work on their project after that, Ashley walking Judy through the simple process of removing the outer casing from a computer's hard drive so they could monitor what exactly happened when Judy tried talking to it using her powers. Neither of them were particularly dab hands with machinery but Ashley obviously knew a thing or two about tools, and called the TA over to assist them with the project.
  2. On his feet, Fast-Forward looked at Hologram covered in a stew of psionic and entropic energy and smiled with the broad affection of the long-married. "God, you are so damn beautiful." He considered in a flash, then said, "St. Louis," out loud before turning and running away - all the way out of Bayview and down into some suburb on the edge of town. In the middle of a fast-food restaurant's parking lot, he shot a quick wave at the suddenly-gaping morning patrons staring at him through the window. "Hey everybody! Supercrime!'s tenth season starts this fall!" He winked, pulled up his shades, and looked at his watch - waiting for a psychic signal.
  3. Ashley was saved from admitting she had no idea what the screen she was looking at said (or from thinking about how great Fa'Rua smelled, like the way she imagined the stars smelled by way of what must have been engines) by the sound of a muffled boom outside. She stepped away, all business, and raised her comm to her lips. "Perimeter, report! Jacobs? Anderson?" There was the dead sound of static on the line, and with a muffled exclamation Watchdog drew the gun at her hip without a second thought. "...Judy, we need to take you out the back way. Fa'Rua, you've got the rear, she's between us." She shot Infinity an almost-apologetic look; and then the three of them were on the move towards the back door of the Terran mansion.
  4. Fast-Forward moves 9000 ft away or so and readies himself to run back into the fight and punch the evil psychic as soon as they appear. I'll post IC in a bit.
  5. Can I get a status update on the NPCs?
  6. "Contrary to what they say in the girls locker room, we don't actually have to disclose our powers to each other. A lot of students keep things to themselves if they're embarrassed or ashamed. Judy doesn't even like to tell people she can see in the dark." A look crossed her face that Lulu had never seen when Ashley talked about her sister; sadness. "If it gets around I can suck people's powers out by looking at them, that's not so bad." She smiled tightly. "Another reason for people to cross the street when they see the Watchdog coming." Ashley considered her words for a little while, then said: "My story goes something like this." She took a breath, looked the psychic in the eye, and told her the truth. "My dad was a cop. He was an Asian guy who walked a beat in a city that was mostly white and black, but he loved every minute of it. He used to say that he was showing the people in the neighborhood that this was where we belonged, that we fit in just as much as anybody who'd been here forever. When I was little, I was the big sister, and I wanted to be just like him." She was silent for a moment or two, then said, "Dad was shot in the back one day by a dealer who thought he'd found his drug stash. He hadn't really, though, he was just checking the building to make sure nobody was hiding in it." She shrugged. "He was wearing his vest but that doesn't always work, and it didn't this time. The guy wasn't even particularly high in the food chain; he was just a low-life who panicked because he was high." Ashley didn't sound sympathetic even so. "It was all just a pointless, random tragedy." "This was long before I even knew what a Grue was, you understand." She gave Lulu a serious look. "So if I'm ever...too protective of Judy, which maybe I am sometimes, it's because I know what happens when people let their guard down, and I don't want that to happen to anyone else I care about."
  7. "Ashley, Ah want to ask you something." Something in the tone of voice had Ashley on her guard even before she turned from her desk to look at Judy. She signaled Judy to go on with her eyes - then tensed when Judy, blushing, asked "How, um, how old were you when you lost your virginity?" Ashley closed her eyes for a moment and seriously considered saying what she wanted to say, which was "That is not your business, Miss Cahill" - but when she opened her eyes, she looked at Judy, saw the stricken look on her face, and felt herself tense for a whole other reason. "...what did Leroy ask you?" She couldn't actually shoot him in the nuts but she could sure as hell make him _think_ she could, which would probably be convincing enough the way he viewed dominance behavior from women - "_Nothing_!" said Judy, leaping automatically to Leroy's defense and to her feet for that matter. "He never asked me anything, Ah don't...ah don't even think he wants to until we're actually married. He is a gentleman prince and he is a good Christian boy too." "...you've always told me you didn't want to either," said Ashley consideringly, keeping any judgement out of her voice. Judy had also promised not to do anything during her 'engagement'. "Has something changed?" "No-no, not really," said Judy, shaking her head. "Ah mean, Ah still don't want to have sex until Ah'm married. But Ah've been thinking a lot lately. Those aliens, the Stellarians; they don't eat, they don't sleep, they...don't breath..." She tugged at her hair and took a deep breath. She still did that, anyway. "They probably don't exactly practice, you know, marital relations between man and wife." She sighed, then said, "Ah'm just worried what'll happen if Ah...change more, before we're married. But as long as we get married afterwards, it's not...it's not bad. Ugh, it sounds bad when Ah say it like that, though.." _This is really between you and your parents, or maybe you and Nurse Joy._ Ashley was thinking between blinks. _Your parents who will tell you never, ever have sex, and that there's something wrong with you if you do. Nurse Joy, who'll hand you a condom and smile about it, and you'll probably throw it away because that's what your parents taught you too. Or maybe you'll ask one of the other girls your age..._ Ashley's hands twitched inside her fingerless gloves, and she spoke about herself because it was easier than thinking about Judy. "Tyler. The one from the tattoo." She rubbed her upper arm, then said, "It wasn't much to speak of. Tyler was a very handsome boy but he was pretty new at it too." Which was not entirely what he'd told her before they'd done the deed, but the fine details there were definitely _not_ something she was going to share with her ward. "Frankly, Judy, I can't recommend losing your virginity in high school. It's not all it's cracked up to be." "All right," said Judy, looking disconsolately down at the floor. "Ah'm just afraid it'll just...drift away. Like everything else. Ah don't even remember what food tastes like anymore." "I'll get you birth control if you want it," said Ashley in a whisper that came out before she quite knew what she was saying. "You're almost eighteen, and I can't stop you, so better to do it safe than unsafe." Ashley briefly contemplated being fired not just from her job but out of some sort of cannon behind the White House, but decided she couldn't just turn away. "But it would _really_ be a bad idea, Judy, and...I want you to be honest with me before you do anything." Judy took a breath, then scrubbed her hand across the back of her eyes. "Thank you, Ashley. That really means a lot." She smiled slightly, then admitted, "Ah don't...Ah don't even think Ah'll say anything, Ah don't want Leroy to think Ah'm easy, and Ah did promise you Ah'd wait. Ah just...wanted to be honest with you, like you said." "Yeah. Yeah....okay." Ashley rubbed her eyes and had the sudden manic thought of Well at least she didn't ask you what you think about women!
  8. Ashley shot Adam a quick smile - then shut the door behind him. Well, she's got a telepath's self-possession, doesn't she? "It's no problem," she said, taking a chair and moving it closer to the room's small bedside. She knew she'd have to work quickly - Nurse Joy did _not_ like her being in here one bit, Summers' word or not, but this was part of the overall mission and she had to take it seriously. "Just make sure you're there to pass it on to the next person who needs it." She set her hands on her lap and studied Lulu, not even glancing down at the collar. She hesitated a barely discernible moment before she said "What should we discuss?"
  9. Adam was not there - at least not at first. But there was Nurse Joy, with calm eyes and reassuring words, and Headmistress Summers not long after that. They reassured Lulu that everything was all right; she wasn't hurt, she hadn't seriously hurt anybody, and she wasn't in any trouble. "This sort of thing happens all the time, deary," said Nurse Joy with a ready smile, "don't worry. We should have you out of that collar in just a week or two, maybe less if everything goes well." In the meantime there were books, and the television, and an institutional breakfast that come to think of it wasn't too different from her regular breakfast. Just when she was getting ready to ask about her boyfriend, or perhaps her foster parents, there was a little knock on the door of her small private room - and a new face entered. "Hey, Lulu." Ashley looked back to normal, in a leather jacket, white T, and jeans that looked like they'd seen some hard use. She held up a finger, smiling. "Ssh. Don't tell anyone I came, all right?" She stepped in. "I wanted to talk to you."
  10. Mr. Jorgensen's voice came over the signal first. "Well, ah, Davyd, I'm looking at the signal tracker here, and-" "Davyd." Watchdog's voice broke into the signal. "Coming to find you - signal is strong. Keep talking." It wasn't long before Ashley, with her sister in tow, arrived on the scene. Ashley had evidently done some scouting during their day of observation because she found the pathway down to the beach as if she'd been coming to the area all her life. She looked wary, but hadn't actually put her helmet up yet. "What is it?" When they saw it, Judy, standing behind her, frowned. "A beer can? Did...one of us bring it?" she asked, looking suspiciously at the other teens as if they might be about to whip out some alcoholic intoxicants. She had been having a fine old time on her birdwatching expedition, and still had her notebook tucked under one denim-clad arm. "No, look how old it is..." said Ashley thoughtfully. "...says something Abbey Single Ale. Anybody recognize it?" she asked the others.
  11. Ashley smiled, with teeth, and whispered "That's nice, but I think Fun-Sized Mark Wahlberg there might have a few ideas about that." She looked over at the other group and said loud enough to be heard, "Hey, if you boys turn us inside out, I'm gonna make you eat that thing, fair warning." Figure the Atlantean can hear us, anyway. She shot a look at the room's instructor, checking to see if the TA planned to intervene.
  12. "It is words that go beyond your words, and speech that goes beyond your speech." Aquaria had by now secured what appeared to be a two-liter bottle of ginger ale - and as she spoke, she unscrewed the lid wetly. "Your language hurts my throat. If I speak it too long, I could even bleed. Why would mine be any better for yours?" She opened the bottle and poured it down into her gigantic mouth as she spoke, making direct eye-contact with both Lulu and Nick by means of large eyes that could indeed look in two directions at once.
  13. Several more students shared their personal stories - and Judy was struck by how mundane they all were. Oh there were variations to it all; but when it was a boy afraid to come out to his conservative parents or a girl only able to be her true self here at the school, it didn't really matter if one was from a cult of Odin-worshipping Asatru in the forests of Canada or the other from another dimension run by the Communists. Family was family, and problems were problems. She offered hugs when they looked like they were needed, and as she took her seat she had a heavy heart. "Ah am so sorry you've all had to go through this," she said sympathetically. "This club is going to be a place that offers you a safe haven. But first, we've gotta pick our officers. Ahmed, if you do want to be treasurer, Ah think you'd do a great job, Ah've seen you in math class." They did a vote by hands, and Ahmed was indeed the new treasurer. "So that just leaves President and Vice-President before Ah step down as secretary..." She turned and looked at Mia and Elizabeth, obviously asking a question with her eyes.
  14. Oh my God, though Woodsman, appalled. They're virgins. A bunch of untrained virgins! He shifted uneasily in his seat, for a moment or two radiating the energy of a man ready to bolt from the room entirely. He thought for just a moment before he said: "Have family. Too much risk. But we need to work together. Can recommend several spots, both in swamp and elsewhere in city. Imprudent not to cooperate - as long as not personal business." He rose to his feet and walked to one corner of the conference room, where he casually removed a streetmap of the city where it hung on one wall and put it down in the central table. "Recommend San Sebastian or Easton. Former remote, latter significant recent construction. Easier to blend in." He tapped the map, then said, "Suggest we pick a face. Somebody young and pretty locals will find unthreatening. Not me. Look like psychopath."
  15. Judith shot Ashley a nervous look - one reflected, albeit discreetly, in the faces of her security detail. With a deep sigh that she almost entirely hid from her friend and her ward, Ashley said, "Team, move out and take the perimeter. We'll handle things in here." Once the security staff had cleared the room, Ashley put an encouraging hand on Judy's shoulder. "It's okay, they're out of range." She didn't sound terribly worried on her colleagues' behalf. "You already know you can't hurt me, and Fa'Ura here just fell from space! She's pretty badass." She grinned at Infinity, then turned back to Judy. "You can do this." "Well...okay..." Judy closed her eyes, concentrated - and began to glow. The effect was quite striking; a pure white light that arose from skin and hair and eyes, bright enough to obscure her features without actually blinding anything. She was emitting EM radiation across the spectrum, glowing brightly enough that she was almost hot to the touch (from the sensor scans, anyway) without actually being dangerous to be around. She opened her eyes, a distinctly brighter white, and spoke. "Is-is this helping?"
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