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Tiffany Korta

Emerald City Team-up: Danger, danger...

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First National Bank, Downtown Emerald City
1st June 2018, 6:00 pm

 

Downtown Rush hour traffic was normally pretty bad but today in this part of town it was particularly bad as the First National had just been robbed, the major cause of the problem was the bank's security car sparking big arcs of electricity from whoever had just robbed the place.

 

Whoever had done the job was however gone by the time Pinnacle had arrived leaving a mystery to discover who had robbed the place. Even though villains were still rather new in Emerald City there were still quite a few people to choose from...

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It was Friday evening, Christian and Phan were seated at a well worn dining room table, the setting having been cleared from the earlier dinner by Huong, Phan's mother.  Mrs. Trinh had seemed genuinely surprised when Christian assisted with the clean up and took over the drying of the dishes, passing them awkwardly to Phan so she could place them in the proper cupboards and drawers.  He just shrugged awkwardly at Mrs. Trinh's inquisitive gaze, "The least I could do, after all Phan just invited me over to prep for our debate next week."  He paused, teasing his friend, "It was you who insisted I stay for dinner."

 

Mrs. Trinh smiled, and patted the young man's shoulder, turned to look at her daughter, "This one, he is so polite."  She turned back to him a gleam in her eye as she took the towel from his hands, and folded it neat, placing it beside the sink.  As both Christian and Phan turned their attention from the clearing of dinner to their laptops and notes for next weeks coming debate, Mrs. Trinh retired to her bedroom, the indistinct sounds of some television serial or another drifting down the stairs.

 

Christian turned to his friend, Phan, raised an eyebrow, broad grin on his face, "This one?"  A snort in reply, a solid thumb into the meat of his arm, and Phan's soft voice, "Let's get to work."  And they did, the statement would be It is never appropriate for the 'Government to restrict Freedom of Speech,' however the pair would not know whether they were Pro or Con until Wednesday's debate.  So they began their research, Supreme Court rulings and precedents, laws and by-laws as they related to hate crimes, and dissemination of literature relating to, or promoting discrimination based on any number of categories.  

 

His phone chimed, he'd set his alerts to notify him of any emergencies in the Emerald Cities, either Oregon or Washington State, so he could respond if the situation if need be.  His heart thumped in his chest as he heard the alert, mind racing, he'd only appeared over Mallory Bay the beginning of May, saving the Elysium Hills Bus from plummeting from the bridge into the Bay below.  Since then he'd assisted with an explosion at a Kessler facility, a forest fire that threatened the Elysian National Park, and a swamped trawler at the Shipyards, so he'd certainly received some exposure, from the press and the public. 

 

"Do you need to take that?"  Phan's voice shocked him out of his reverie, he nodded, stammering.  "Yeah, sorry."  He brought the phone out and paced from the dining room to the living room, the 1st National had been robbed?!  His heart hammered in his chest once again, to this point he'd been assisting emergency response, fire, ambulance, search & rescue, not the police.  He took a deep breath, it was evening, but it wasn't late, and downtown traffic would be snarled, which meant that alot of innocents would be on their way home, to their husbands, wives, children, and the actions of these criminals could put those lives at risk.  That wasn't something he could risk, not if he could do something about it.

 

He rushed back to the dining room, and rapidly began gathering his things, Phan looking at him with a shocked, concerned look on her face.  This wasn't like Christian, he wasn't the type of student to blow off research and leave it to the last minute.  "Everything alright?"  She asked hesitantly, he nodded the affirmative, but she wasn't convinced.  "Christi-,"  He cut her off, "I'm sorry Phan, it's important, I need to go."  He slung his laptop bag over his shoulder, and looked back to her as he moved to the front door, "I'll text you tonight, don't worry."  A pause, "And thank your mom for me, ok?"

 

First National Bank, Downtown Emerald City

June 1st, 2018 6:03pm

 

He controlled his descent as he came on the scene, landing in front of First National's disabled vehicle, ensuring the private security would see, and hopefully recognize him.  He turned first to the surrounding civilians, "Stand back please."  He then strode confidently around the car, bracing as he moved towards it through the arcing electricity that coursed through it's frame.  He nodded to the Security personnel trapped in the vehicle, "Officer."  Reaching forward he tensed for the inevitable shock as he wrenched the door open quickly.  Releasing the occupant from their seat belt he turned his back to the vehicle, sheltering them with his broad back, hoping his body would prevent further harm.

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Emerald Spider

Across town, there was a potential disaster as the fleeing villain had taken out the lights on an intersection, most of the car had managed to stop but one had managed to miss the danger and was about to collide with other vehicles when it was caught in a twisting web of quantum filaments. Then there was thump on the roof and a face appeared on the driver's side, that of Emerald Spider.

 

"You may want to slow a little on those junctions buster, never know who you'll run into! The web should go in about an hour and I'm sure they'll be no lasting damage to the paintwork."

 

With the emergency services rapidly arriving Emerald Spider took to the air on her quantum web, looking for the villain who had caused all this damage.

 

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Even though the ECPD were still new to all this they rapidly got up to speed and those on the scene quickly pushed everyone back creating a safe area around the sparking van. The sparks seemed to be dying down, but it still sparked rather dramatically as Pinnacle ripped off the door and it still hurt as it sparked across him.

 

The paramedics were quickly there to check on the guard and thankful they weren't more than slightly scorched, even with all this chaos luckily no one had been hurt by the bank-raid. Whoever had done this needed to be stopped before that luck run out.

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Even as the electrical arc's started to subside, Pinnacle assured that the guards, and the paramedics attending them, were clear of the vehicle.  He walked through the crowd, Emerald City's finest began to take witness statements, as he watched them he was able to identify the Officer who seemed to be giving orders to her subordinates.  He waited patiently as she spoke, "-- perimeter.  Clear this traffic before we end up some moron rear ending the ambulance and snarling us up."  She paused, turned to the new comer, "I'm sure 1st National  Security will thank you, but I'm afraid we'll need a statement, Mr. ...,"  He responded, "The media's takien to calling me Pinnacle."

 

"Right, Pinnacle.  I'm going to need a statement."  She nodded towards the car, "It's obvious you weren't involved in the theft and assault, but I have procedures to follow."  As she spoke, Christian nodded, keenly aware of the cellphones in the crowd that seemed to be pointed in his direction.  "I understand," he briefly scanned her uniform, "Officer Kowalski, however there is the more immediate concern of an individual, or group of individuals, able to generate an electrical charge significant enough to disable a pursuit vehicle, as well as incapacitate it's occupants.  That presents a significant threat to public safety, and I would like to assist the ECPD in anyway I am able."  He paused now, approaching the next topic carefully, "To do so, I'd need a description of the suspect, or suspects, so I can begin an aerial search." 

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Emerald Spider
For a few minutes, Emerald Spider followed the trail of chaos caused by the fleeing villain, though as they went along it died down until there was nothing to show where they had gone, apart from the traffic snarl caused by the everything else. Even from her elevated view, she couldn't spot any clue as to where the villain had gone, to all intents it looked like they laid a false trail when fleeing.

 

With no other options right now, she wasn't the detective type really, she followed the trail back towards where the crime had probably came from, back towards the First National bank.

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The detective gave a little sigh, with meta-crimes still being fairly new in Emerald City not everyone was used to dealing with the weirdness supers bought. Any concerns, however, were quickly swept aside by Pinnacle's pleasant demeanor.

 

"We're not quite sure as all the cameras have been fried, but we think it's a villain called Electron. They've been done robberies for the last few weeks, but this is the biggest so far. Oh great...!"

 

Descending down on a rope of quantum filament was someone very familiar to the residents of Emerald City, the masked features of Emerald Spider.

 

“Was it something I said?"

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Even as Kowalski was interrupted Pinnacle turned, a quizzical look on his face.  He quickly recognized the figure, instantly taking in the hood & goggles, as well as the deep green and silver web motif.  "Emerald Spider?"  A broad smile formed over his face, Maddy, who kept a journal of the young hero's activities would be so jealous, he couldn't wait to tell her.  His smile faltered momentarily as he considered the fact that he'd be unable to do so without revealing his own activities as Pinnacle, something he'd been keeping from his family for the time being.

 

What didn't go unnoticed was the apprehension in the Detective's voice, he looked to her and the confidence returned to his voice, "Just another concerned citizen, Detective, with Emerald City's premiere hero aiding us, the ECPD should have this Electron apprehended in short order."  He paused, turned to the Emerald Spider, hovered to a height with the lithe young woman and extended a hand, "Media's dubbed me Pinnacle, and I just want to say it's an honor and pleasure to meet you, your selfless actions inspired me and many others throughout the Emerald Cities." 

 

"Apparently this, Electron has attempted to rob the First National, generated a large enough electrical charge to disable their security vehicle and injure the occupants, I've never heard of him, have you?"

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Kowalski opinion on the whole thing was a little more neutral if she was upset by the sudden arrival of Emerald Spider she kept it to herself.

 

"She actually, it's probably the only thing witnesses agree about! No costume and a mask and hood, obviously inspired by someone..." she shot a dirty look at Emerald Spider "... and the first thing she does is take out the cameras. If it wasn't for the whole electricity thing she barely counts as a supervillain, really she's an overqualified bank robber"

 

She rubbed her forehead and looked at the two heroes with a resigned look.

 

"Everywhere bank robberies are on the out, but here and Freedom are they still a thing, explains everything really!"

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Emerald Spider

In the last couple of years she'd been active Emerald Spider had seen almost every reaction to the sudden increase of heroes and villains in Emerald City, and she couldn't blame the Detective for her jaded view of things.

 

"Sounds pretty smart, though I guess this is an escalation of there normal methods. Guess we should do something  about Electron then!"

 

Still, upside down she offered out a hand out at Pinnacle.

 

"So hi there I'm Emerald Spider." she paused for a moment before adding "Fancy a team up?"

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He nodded as Kowalski corrected him then continued her exposition in regards to the perpetrator, Electron.  "She may have managed to short circuit the bank's security cameras, it's doubtful she was able to disable all electronic devices in the area, and given the rarity of super powered crime in the Emerald Cities, it's likely that someone snapped a picture on their phone, lets start there."  He paused, considering the situation, he hadn't been trained for this, but the debate team had taught him to draw conclusions from scant facts using logical analysis.  "And perhaps EC Utilities could let us know if any of their power grids have experienced fluctuations, or if there are any reported outages of traffic lights that an outburst like that," he pointed to the wrecked security vehicle, "may have caused."

 

Pinnacle reached out taking the gloved hand of the Emerald Spider, shaking it while maintaining eye contact, he spoke with sincerity "Emerald City's first and foremost?"  A pause.  "It would be my honor."  He raised an eyebrow at the Detective, "Assuming that the ECPD is requesting assistance in establishing an aerial perimeter for their search?"

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Detective Kowalski considered her options for a few moments before replying, with just a touch of reluctance. 

 

"We'll we're pulling a blank right now, the woman has a talent for keeping out of our sight." whilst she replied to Emerald Spider she wouldn't look her in the eye "And yes she's getting bolder in her robberies."

 

She gave a little sigh before adding with a note of sadness

 

"Unfortunately official I can't offer department resources to assist you in the case. Unofficially I need to organise this investigation and will be leaving that car..." she pointed to the cruiser she'd arrived in "... unattended, which has a computer link to the ECPD systems. Good luck on your hunt!"

 

With a smile, she left the two heroes alone.

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Emerald Spider

Peri had to remind herself that she'd become a bit of a celebrity in this city, even if the Detective showed that not everyone was a massive fan. It was tough on the day that she had to balance paying the rent against another power cells for her suit. Though even she was a bit of a surprise, something that she wasn't going to miss.

 

"It's a pleasure as well kid, and just Emerald Spider, for now, we're partners after all!"

She dropped down gracefully to her feet and padded over the car, sliding into the seat to access the computer.

 

"I'll check the power grid, good catch by the way, see if anyone posted her images up on social media."

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Kid?  Christian took it in stride, but he was certain that when he flew in front of Mars Tech's gleaming tower of glass & steel that his reflection appeared both taller, and broader than he himself did in his civilian identity.  He wondered absently if she had some way of being able to pierce the odd effect of his transformation, though he himself had been unsuccessful in trying to determine the nature of the change itself.  Rather it was just something he accepted as a consequence of his new found powers and responsibilities, like apprehending this Electron before she presented a larger threat to public safety.

 

"I'm going to assume you'll need the ECPD Computer to search the power grid, and since my attire is woefully lacking in pockets, I don't have access to my cellphone.  I'll commence an aerial search pattern to see if I can get a visual."  As he took to the air, he was concerned about the logic of his plan, he didn't have super human vision, the growing dusk would hinder him as much as it would their suspect.  Still, he had to try, he moved north and east towards the White Water Highway, which was the northernmost boundary between the downtown financial district and the Riverfront itself.  From Kowlaski's description, he assumed the suspect was on foot, and that should mean he would have the advantage of speed, which should allow him to cut into her head start.

 

Though he had no idea which direction she was headed or where her ultimate destination was, so he kept his ceiling at about 15 meters, or five stories high allowing him a birds eye view, as well as putting him outside of the usual peripheral vision of the common Emerald Cities citizenry.  This wasn't Freedom City, and he was far more likely to be spotted by tourists looking up at the skyscrapers, rather than a fleeing local.

 

Or so he hoped. 

 

 

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From the air it was possible to pick out the chaos of the fleeing Electron, but just only just among the general rush hour traffic, she must have chosen the time of the raid for just this reason. Either way the roads were snarled with the lights being out for several blocks. But just a block over things seemed to be flowing quite nicely thank you very much.

 

Could she so bold, would she be so bold? With the polices attention on the bank and the traffic it would be relatively simple to just pop a block over and hit another back before anyone noticed something amiss.

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Emerald Spider

It was a little difficult to work the cars keyboard, and she wasn't going to take them off and leave fingerprints here, but eventually, she got the hang of the machine. Then it was making the machine do exactly what they wanted it to tell them, no an easy task on this pretty simple machine.

But in her time Peri had worked with much simpler and even less user-friendly machines and made them sing just how she wanted to do here. unfortunately, the information she gathered wasn't as useful as they wanted, but it did contain something useful. She somersaulted out of the car and onto the roof shouting up to her partner.

"No unusual power surges hereabout, seems she make her own."

 

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As he heard Spider's voice, Pinnacle banked wide, returning to the vicinity of 1st National, landing softly on an adjacent rooftop, he levitated in the open air, one foot lightly resting on the precipice of the office building, giving any observer the impression of grace and poise.  He nodded as Emerald Spider spoke, silently thankful for the more experienced heroes technical prowess, her ability to tap into the utility grid to determine other drains on the system was impressive, and he was grateful for her expertise.

 

"I followed Electron's trail north and east out to White Water, it only extends about two blocks from 1st National, but it's a narrow corridor, and only runs between University & Union.  So one block wide."  That nagging question returned to him as he spoke, "It got me thinking, Emerald City Trust is just a block over from University & 7th, if she got interrupted at 1st National she could be heading there."  Another pause, further doubts, too many questions.  "Or maybe 1st National was a feint, what was taken anyways?  If she's operating alone and on foot she'd be very conspicuous."

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Emerald Spider

Emerald Spider considered the options for a few moments, one thing about swinging around the city plus her day job was that she had a good idea of how the city was laid out.

 

"Hmmm, not banks on that block but there are a couple of Jewellery Shops. Whilst all the Banks will be on alert no one could consider them a threat, no hassle and everyone's looking somewhere else. Let's go take a look shall we?"


She raised her hand and made a gesture that sent a twisting twirling thread of quantum filament and swung up into the sky towards the block.
 

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As Emerald Spider said the street was crowded with small but high-value stores, including a few expensive looking jewellers. The street was pretty clear, with many closed or starting to close for the day, so the street was almost deserted. It was probably the best time of day to pull a robbery like this without any attention.


It almost looked like they were wrong for a few seconds until the smoked glass window of the nearest Jewellers was lite up from within, they'd apparently caught Electron in the middle of her robbery!

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He paused, looking through the large front window of the jewelers boutique, then turned looking towards Spider, "Cover the exits?  I'll try to dissuade her from further action and get her to surrender."  A frown crossed his handsome face, "She'll probably send a few thousand volts through me, and try to escape, that's when we'll restrain her, once shes out of the building."

 

With a nod, he floated down to the front door, noticed that it had been forced and hovered into the main area, ensuring his back was to the door, should she attack him with an arc, like were flying off the car at the bank.  "Electron!"  He called out, flexing his knees, bracing for any attack from Electron's direction, "Cease and desist. I'd prefer if you came peacefully, no reason to risk further damage or injuries to those involved."

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The window burst out in a massive burst of electricity finally revealing the person they'd been after, and in appearance, as a villain, she was fairly unremarkable. In her charcoal grey suit, she appeared to be a young businesswoman except for the domino mask she was using to hide her features.

 

"I'm feeling generous hero! So split now before the trouble starts." she spoke with quite a sneer in her voice obviously quite confident in her abilities to deal with one of Emerald Cities nascent hero community.

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Emerald Spider

Watching the new kid operate Peri couldn't help but be impressed with his confidence, she'd probably wouldn't have called them out until she knew who they were facing exactly. She hoped that he was able to cope if this Electron decided to attack, so it was somewhat of a relief when she decided to grandstand instead. There was a chance that with the addition of another hero they might back down, so she lowered herself down on one of her quantum threads besides Pinnacle.

 

"Sorry if this is a private gathering, but is there enough threats going around to include little old me as well?"

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Disappointment filled Pinnacle's face, "Why resort to petty larceny Electron?  Think of it, with your abilities, clean energy, electricity.  Just the research alone would be worth a hundred times what you expect to pull in tonight."  As the window exploded outward he winced, afraid his inexperience was showing.  It was still rush hour, and with the 1st National snarling traffic two blocks over, the exterior streets could be packed with commuters on their way towards White Water Highway and their suburban lives.

 

"Last time I'm going to offer.  Stand down."

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Emerald Spider

Peri hadn't met Electron herself she had some experience with her type and knew she wasn't the type to surrender without a fight. So instead of waiting for her to respond, she decided to make things a little easier for them with some preemptive action.

 

With a few fingers movements, she sent a stream of quantum filaments that wrapped around the feet of Electron anchoring her to the ground.

 

"Let's just settle down and chat about this! I could always go fetch some coffees and a danish for us all!"

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Electron wasn't having any to do with this as the electricity sparked angrily around her.

 

"You always have to ruin everything, why can't you just let me get my due!"

 

She then sent a stream of electricity out towards not Emerald Spider but who she perceived as the biggest threat Pinnacle. The electricity sparked and flew through the air to crackle around the young superhero.

 

"Well now you'll have to suffer!" she gave a wicked grin that suggested she was quite enjoying inflicting pain.

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