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Take Your Shot [IC]


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March 4, 2018



Clouds hung over Claremont Academy, the occasional gust of wind shaking snow from the bare trees of the grounds.  But for some of the students living on the grounds, this mattered about as much as the next song on the oldies station playing in the teacher's lounge.  After having changed out of her warm winter clothes and into the gold and blue uniform of the school, Selena Kwon stepped out of the girl's locker room and into the programmed reality of the school's combat simulation room.


Taking a deep breath, enjoying the facsimile of a beach in the middle of summer.  Stepping across the sand, she withdrew several pieces of steel from her belt and waited for the targets to start appearing.

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Studying the weather patterns, Tony always studied the patterns. Not for some mystical reason. You didn't need magic when the numbers never lied. Still, Tony studied a little bit of everything. He wanted to have notes on why the Nor'Easter was not some punishment from a deity. It had been a few hours. His eyes began to blur from looking at the sky and the screen of his computer. He needed to take a break.


Tony reflexively jumped when he saw the girl walk out of the locker room. He was all turned around to get here. He was sure he mapped out the layout in his head. Was that the combat simulator she was going into? I mean, it couldn't hurt to look inside. Was he cleared to go in there? Maybe he would go get his gadgets and join her. Would that seem weird? Well, only one way to find out.


Going back to the dorms he grabbed his boomerang bandoleer. As usual, the boys dorm was quiet. He wondered if if this was him or them. At least the girls were talkative. Alexa was his science bro.  And Corinne, she was cool too, but he had different feelings for her. And then the others. There were a lot more girls than guys here. He shook his head. Less thoughts about girls, more thoughts about that combat simulator.


Flying out of the dorm and to the combat simulator he looked at the door. Was the girl still in there? Slowly he opened the door.

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Selena launched a small steel spike at a floating target, looking for all the world like a standard dartboard, that erupted from beneath the sand to her right, striking just outside the bullseye in the seventeen point slice.  As soon as the projectile made contact the target shimmered out of existence and a few seconds later another sprang into being, this time rising quickly from the surf and moving in a lazy back and forth motion.  With an effort of power, a rough shuriken looking piece of metal sailed through the air and lodged into the four point slice in the triple ring.


As the third target began to rise from behind a outcropping of rock, the simulation paused and a doorway appeared from nowhere a few yards to her right.  Left eye still glowing purple and her projectiles settling into her hands, she turned to look at who had stepped into the sim.  "Hola," she called, noticing the bandoleer of boomerangs she called over, "You here for target practice too?"

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Stepping off of the Hover Rang, it folded up and fit easily in Rang's over stuffed sack of papers and small gadgets. He'd already put on his Bandoleer of Boomerangs on the way over. "Yeah," he nodded, "I've never been in here. So, I might not have the clearance." He looked at the dartboard, "very nice aim. I'm a thrower myself."


He walked over to the girl and reached out a hand. "I'm also a bit new here. I've been here a couple of weeks. My name is Tony." He looked around, "and this place is probably the most voluntarily dangerous place on campus, I'd wager."

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"Selena, nice to meet ya," she answered, shaking hands, her weapons floating next to her shoulder.  With a bit of a sly grin the Puerto Rican magnetokinetic added, "And yeah, this room can go from zero to 'Oh God, oh God, we're all gonna die' with the right command."  


Turning back to the target she spoke over her shoulder, "But I'm pretty sure you can't get down here without the clearance.  Though, next time you might want to make sure you've got the training costume.  This place can ruin your wardrobe.  Let me finish this set and the next three targets are all yours."  Facing the goal fulling she called to the room, "Computer, resume."  Seconds after the words left her lips, a small dart found its mark in the bullseye.


Moving back she gave the new guy a light pat on the shoulder, "Your turn."

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Tony looked at himself. Black slacks and loafers, a dark blue tennis shirt under a brown hooded coat. All topped off by the device of his design. "Well, I really do like this coat," he said as he noticed the temperature was not freezing in here. Quite the opposite. "Whew," he quickly tapped a complicated password on some buttons on his shoulder. The bandoleer came off and then the coat came off. He was broad shouldered and musclebound without the coat. Not that he wasn't without it, it was just hard to see. He quickly put the bandoleer back on and tapped  seemingly different password. Or maybe it was the same? It was hard to tell.


"I mean I tried the school suit," he said nervously, "I mean, I don't think me and spandex are ready for each other yet." Drawing a small, metallic boomerang, he placed a small pill-looking thing in a cartridge in the boomerang. "Now If I've calibrated the turn velocity of the orbit rotation." He flung the boomerang at the target. It exploded, the boomerang and the target. There was a gleam of pride in his eyes. Like he had done everything perfectly. He looked to Selena, "I have several prototypes, but I don't think a few of them will work on the machinery."

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Selena gave her unexpected guest another, more appreciative once-over as he lost the coat and his physique became more apparent.  "I don't know, I think the suit would work for you," she said, her smirk clearly coming through her words.


The young heroine barely had enough time to cover her eyes as sand and smoke blew over her as the target was reduced to holographic scrap.  "Impressive.  I'm curious, are those biometrically locked to you or can anyone with an idea of what they're doing use those?  And I'd like to see what other toys you've brought.  I also hope you brought enough for everyone."

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“I dunno, I like my costume better.” Tiny girls could be like ninjas. Especially if they were really quick. And Mona Simms, alias Pacer, ‘set the pace’ for speedsters not named Velocity. “You can ask them to change it, though.” She was, of course, carelessly dressed aside from a good pair of sneakers. Her hair, as usual, still needed cutting. “I wanna throw one, too.” She pointed at the boomerangs. “Ummm…do they break? Because I throw really fast.” She demonstrated with a pebble she just suddenly had. The crack of it breaking the sound barrier was perhaps a bit loud for inside spaces. The target was smashed.

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Shaking the ringing out of her ears after getting to see a stone get launched almost casually faster than most bullets exit a gun she moved over towards the second arrival in roughly as many minutes.  Giving the pair's clothes a once over she sighed, "You know, the longer I'm here, the more overdressed I feel.  Knew I should have gone with beachwear for today or at least my own costume but noooo, the only thing I had in my locker was this one."  Muttering almost to herself she continued, "Doesn't even have the cape I added to the basic design."


"Most things do when stopping suddenly after hitting mach one.  Or, when they blow up after hitting a target.  By the way guys, I'm not sure how to score those last two without a target left standing."

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“We’re keeping score? Cool.” Mona suddenly wasn’t there anymore. But before it got awkward, she was back. With a small dry erase board with an (empty) scoring table written on it. One slot for each of the three, and title heading spaces. Where did she get it from? Maybe…maybe it’s better if superheroes don’t know everything. “Scoreboard.” The board was instantly on the ground and Mona held up three different colored markers. “Pick one.” Did the markers come from the same place as the scoreboard? God (and perhaps the real owners, if they weren’t Mona) only knew.

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Tony nodded, "they're only locked once i put the cartridges in. They're locked and loaded after that. They coded to expel their cartridges on the next target they touch." He pulled out an uncartridged one and sat it down in front of him. Poking it a few times, it did nothing. Showing Selena a cartridge, he put it in and eyed the target. Throwing it it sliced clean through it. He sat one out for Selena, not putting a cartridge in it. "Its just polysteel now. A polysteel boomerang, but still not as dangerous as it could be." He laughed.


He was about to pull out more boomerangs and cartridges. But the girl from his intro to the school, the fast one, came in. Ran in more likely. "Hey, uh," he remembered the girl's name "Mona!" He went through the demonstration of the boomerang again for Mona showing how it worked and did not work. This time the boomerang fragmented into smaller boomerangs which fragmented int even smaller boomerangs. "See?"

Edited by John Doe
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"Very cool," Selena nodded along.  She might not be able to keep up with the boy, clearly a gadgeteer in the making, if his explanation got much more detailed but Tony had not gone full technobabble on them.  With an effort of her power, and her left eye flaring with purple light, one of the unloaded boomerangs rose from the ground to hover over her hand.  Pointing at a target the bladed weapon shot off as if fired from a railgun and slicing through the target.  "Remind me to talk to you next time my shrapnel supplies run low."


Taking the purple marker from Mona she nodded her thanks.  After a moment of consideration, she just marked that she had struck her targets instead of where the hits landed.

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