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Emerald Spider

Peri thought through everything that had been said, whilst enjoying her noodles, it seems that everyone agreed but they were dancing around possible solutions. Some how through the years she’d become something of a superhero elder statewomans, at least in Emerald City, time to employ it for some good.

 

It seems to me that we’re never going to be able to fight Mars and his ilk directly, unless one of us has super lawyer powers.” even now she couldn’t resist a quick pun

 

We should coordinate and share information, network our efforts rather than act independently. At that's the least we can do, if we’re series about working together we could even organise into a super-team. A West Coast Freedom League if you will.”

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Naomi smiled wryly. She had no earthly idea how to explain to Kanunu. <I feel vibrations all over my skin. There are a lot of you here. The shop is full and bustling. Plenty to look at and smell, too. So I’m getting a little too much sensory input.> She reached for an analogy. <I guess it’s like being front row at a rock concert, right next to the speakers while wearing earplugs?> That…wasn’t quite right, but in the general vicinity.

 

Then, of course, her phone vibrated again. Which did not help with the sensory overload. She read the message and then put it on silent. For her own sanity. Hmm. Wait. One of the best things about being mute was that she didn’t blurt out things in surprise anymore. Which was good, because uh…she would have definitely blurted out “the girl in the wheelchair?”. Because like…they were in different years and thus didn’t share many classes. Some, yeah, but they basically never interacted. …okay, how to politely…yes. <It’s always nice to meet a fellow Claremont alum. Congrats on the walking. I heard Zenith did…something?> God, this was so awkward. Salvo was so excited and Naomi barely remembered her existence.

 

She elected to focus on something else. <You guys are probably right. We should focus on what we can do as heroes, not as citizens. My super lawyer powers are years away still.> She smiled, as this was a joke. <I don’t know if I’m ready for something like the League, but I agree. Networking beyond the usual coincidental team ups would be the best way to combat Marstech and the suits.>

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Protectron

 

Spoiler

Scanning assembled organics…

 

The gold and chrome robot slowly turned its head and paused for a second or so at each hero, looking at them with cold, unblinking eyes.  In that brief time it snapped pictures of them & performed a GIS, and pulled whatever information came from the top search results.

 

Spoiler

Organic #1: Humanoid in red and grey outfit, red mask.  Matches recordings of superhero Justice. Justice: Active 1.5 years in Emerald City.  Organizer of this meeting.

 

“Greetings, Justice.  I am pleased to meet you.  Thank you for organizing this meeting.  I am sure we can do great things working together.”

 

Spoiler

Organic #2: Humanoid in green hoodie and silvery belt, gloves, and boots.  Matches recordings of superhero Emerald Spider. Emerald Spider: Active 3.72 years.  Emerald City’s premiere superhero/vigilante. Attempting to scan “spider rig” SCANNERS OFFLINE!

 

“Greetings, Emerald Spider.  I am pleased to meet you. Your work here is known even in Freedom City, and I am pleased to see you here, working with other heroes.”

 

Spoiler

Organic #3: Red and white armored humanoid.  Matches recordings of superhero Salvo. Salvo: Active in Emerald City 0.578 years, Freedom City 1.422 years before that.  Note: Files indicate Salvo’s systems uses a mix of advanced technology and non-standard processes referred to as “magic.”  Attempting to scan armor SCANNERS OFFLINE!

 

“Greetings, Salvo.  I am pleased to see a familiar faceplate from Freedom.  I am still familiarizing myself with Emerald City -- perhaps, after this meeting, you could show me around?"

 

Spoiler

Organic #4: Purple and black costume.  Matches recordings of superhero Venomax.  Venomax: Active in Emerald City two years.  Attempting to scan gauntlets SCANNERS OFFLINE!

 

“Greetings, Venomax.  The array of chemical agents you have been reported to use is quite impressive.  Did you acquire your knowledge of chemistry at an institution of formal learning, or are you self-taught?”

 

Spoiler

Organic #5: Humanoid in nondescript street clothes.  Matches recordings of superhero Kanunu. Kanunu: Active in Freedom City four years ago, moved to Emerald City at some unspecified point.  Known abilities: enhanced strength & endurance, water manipulation.

 

“<Greetings, Kanunu,>” it said in accentless Hawaiian pidgin, “<I am pleased to see another face from Freedom City, working with local superheroes.  May I ask for your aid in familiarizing myself with Emerald City?>”

 

Spoiler

Organic #6: Humanoid in black and red.  Costume not recognized. Mask and facial makeup similar to those used in Mexican Día de Muertos celebrations.

 

“<Greetings, friend>,” he said to Santa Muerte, in accentless Spanish.  “<Your outfit is what some may call ‘spooky,’ and such are typically associated with supervillains.  Are you a former villain, seeking to redeem yourself by serving the community as a superhero?>”

 

Spoiler

Organic #7: Humanoid in lavender and gold outfit, and silver mask.  Costume not recognized. Appears to be taking notes: secretary for group?  Zooming in for a closer look.

 

“Greetings, organic,” it said to Waverider.  Its words had a slightly difficult time reaching her, as they were produced by an electronic speaker, not air passing over flapping lips and tongue.  “Your outfit is unknown to me, but is aesthetically pleasing. And your handwriting is very precise. I am pleased to see you here, working with other heroes.”

 

Spoiler

 

Observation: Kanunu and Waverider appear to be engaged in communication utilizing American Sign Language.

Hypothesis: Waverider has impaired hearing?

Will remember communication preferences for future.

 

Organic #8: Costume matches recordings of vigilante Meta-Naut.  Meta-Naut: active in Emerald City for seven years, though sightings recorded over many previous decades.  Reported to be a traveler of dimensions and times.

 

 

“Greetings, Meta-Naut.   I am pleased to meet you.  Your travels are known even in Freedom City; Lab-Friend Flux would have many questions.  I am pleased to see you here, working with other heroes.”

 

Spoiler

Will perform more in-depth analysis of potential allies at later time.

 

It remained still as a statue as it listened to the others talk.  Venomax about Mars’ superpower subscription service, the Ultio Suits.  Justice revealing the Ultio Suits used some of her technology. Concern from Venomax on what Ultio Suit users might do to civilian-superhero relations in Emerald City.  The spooky girl chanting in a langue it did not quite recognize, and some fuzzy illusory words appearing before Waverider.  A moment of complete silence, generated by Waverider.  Kanunu’s assessment.  Talk of legal action, and coordination.

 

Spoiler

Primary Goal: Preserve as much organic life as possible.

Secondary Goal: Aid dominant organic species, Homo sapiens (and related variants and subspecies).

 

It raised its right hand, and waited to be recognized.  “Machines are the natural help-mates to organics,” it began, slowly panning back and forth to address all.  “Apart, you are good, but together, we can be great. I had heard of these Ultio Suits, and initially thought them to be a positive development, but further investigation revealed to me many of the problems that have been discussed here.  I have some experience working on a team of superheroes,” it continued, “and working with large amounts of information. I would be happy to help organize our schedules, facilitate communications, and develop tactics for a variety of scenarios.  For my first suggestion,” it stopped and faced Justice, “if we are to prove that the Ultio Suits use your technology, without your consent, we must find some way to prove this.  Do you have documentation indicating when and where you developed your armor?”

 

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Hoo, yeah... Going the legal way. That was an option, yeah, but honestly, going up against someone like Mars with all of his resources? No, that probably wouldn't work, right? While the others talked and Protectotron greeted everyone, Robin sat down at the counter, just listening while they discussed things and when the talk fell on organizing and leagues and whatever, she spoke up.

 

"Ye-yes! Exactly! Team ups and everything here, its great. I love randomly teaming up, but look at what's happening, right? All those Ultio Suits running around, whatever those people like the Upstarts are doing and all that, I... I don't really think things are gonna stay as calm as they've usually been around here. We gotta get a way of staying in touch."

 

She fiddled a bit with her belt. A Freedom League West? She hadn't quite thought that far, to be honest.

 

"I, uh... I don't really know about bringing in the Freedom League and outside resources, though." She jumped down from the counter and walked up to Salvo, looking up at the huge armor. "This is the first big thing to happen in Emerald City for years. What's it gonna be if we go running for help without even trying, right?" She was slowly getting worked up, sounding just a bit more confident.

 

"I don't know if we should try and make a team or anything, I don't know how everyone here feels about that, because honestly, most of us have just met, but I really think we gotta find a way to stay in touch. Call for help when needed, pool our resources. Anyone is in danger, they call for help. Anyone get a lead on anything, we share it. Could be something as simple as a chat group, I can set up something secure, or, I dunno, weekly meetings and sharing out phone numbers? I could probably build some communicators for all of us."

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Posted (edited)

Salvo

 

Salvo turned to see the robot hero moving towards her.

 

"Of course, Protectron." Salvo nodded at the greeting. "I'm still getting used to Emerald City myself but I can show you what I know. Crime's rarely of the meta-variety in here, so no stopping the Popsicle Captain from robbing banks. You still get plenty of muggings and murders, the usual for any city, but I usually give an anonymous tip to the police and let them handle those."

 

Salvo had to admit it took some effort to read Protectron. It had no facial expression to speak of, something she herself must be guilty of as Salvo but then she had the normal body language, the inflections of voice, that marked a human, whereas the Protectron had not.

 

"What had you appear in Emerald City all of a sudden?" She asked. "You've been in Freedom City for nine years now."

 

Then the conversation of the room drifted into superhero matters, Marstech and their Ultio Suits, and what the assembled heroes should do about it. The Emerald Spider and Justice suggested coordination, the latter walking up to speak and recommend ways they could keep in touch.

 

Salvo listened, arms crossed, at the suggestions.

 

"If we're to communicate with a system then I'd prefer not to share essential information like our leads in it. You have established that Mars had stolen your tech and until we really understand how then we should assume what you do is compromised." Salvo waved a hand around them, at the noodle shop they had all assembled under. "Looks to me like we have our place."

 

She looked down again at Justice and shrugged. "If you want to start now then get me an Ultio Suit. I have the skills. I have the experience in battlesuits and electronic surveillance. In a week's time we meet here again and I can tell you all that I've found."

 

***

 

Salvo watched as Waverider processed the information, finally settling on signing out a polite greeting. The words from Santa Muerte's spell formed under her HUD and Salvo grew more alarmed as they continued. She wrapped an armored hand around Waverider's own, cutting off the sentence before the other woman could say anything else.

 

The spell made things harder to keep secrets from the other superheroes she did not trust her identity with. Curse the witch for making things hard to keep a conversation private. Luckily, nothing too damning was said.

 

"Yes, you could say that. She did something." Salvo let go of Waverider's hand. "Maybe some other time? It's good to see a familiar face from... before."

Edited by Zeitgeist Blue

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"This...this is a bad idea..." 
 

Visionary hovered over the street outside the noodle shop. He had seen the message on CapesList and, as a self proclaimed defender of Emerald City, he figured he should show up. However he also realized his father being Talos is pretty common knowledge, mostly because he was very open about that fact when asked, and most heroes were (understandably) slow to trust him. On the one hand showing up here could convince some of them he really was a hero, on the other hand it could lead to him getting attacked, and while it was unlikely they could do any lasting damage he did not wish to burn bridges he hadn't built yet...

 

Ah well, whats the worst that could happen. The red skinned artificial lifeform finally worked up the nerve to enter, full knowing what the worse that could happen was. 

"Hello...folks..."

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<I get that.>  Kimo replied quickly to Waverider, for the moment ignoring Salvos somewhat caustic delivery of what was otherwise good points on how to proceed, <mainlanders all talk so fast.>  he added with a low laugh and focussed on the conversation at hand.

 

"Uh sure I can show you around too."  Kimo offred with a shrug to Protectron, "Anything you looking for or ..."  he shrugged uncertainly what did a robot really need?  He pointed at the robot and Salvo though when he mentioned the monitoring.  "That's what I'm talking about, like back home my uncle Maleko got a scanner, listen in an send folk down when there an accident or fire to help out you know?  Bring some blankets find em a place to stay."  Also to keep an ear out for police raids but he'd leave that part out.

 

Nodding to Justice he agreed about bringing in the League, "This a local problem why not have local folk handle it yea?"  Kimo perked at the offer of a communicator, "Seem's like that be better than trading cell numbers, prolly more secure too right?"  he asked Salvo who seemed to have the most concern with that aspect.

 

He frowned as Salvo grabbed Waveriders hands and shook his head, "You a rude one you know but that's not cool."  he scolded his laid back mood souring.  They were saved from further conflict by the timely arrival of Visionary however and he let it drop, "Hey, grab some noodles and pull up a chair we gonna save the city."

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Santa Muerte

 

Quote

“<Greetings, friend>,” Protectron said to Santa Muerte, in accentless Spanish.  “<Your outfit is what some may call ‘spooky,’ and such are typically associated with supervillains.  Are you a former villain, seeking to redeem yourself by serving the community as a superhero?>”

 

The woman in black and red raised an eyebrow at the robot, then chuckled, and responded in kind. "<I understand why you would think so. I deal in death, and the dead. That is a taboo in this culture, so those who take up its symbols inspire fear. And most of those who seek to inspire fear do, as you suggest, have ill intent. I confess I have only recently begun to view my actions in the context of the 'superheroes and supervillains' paradigm. I would certainly not consider myself 'a villain', though most villains would say the same. 'Superhero' is not a label I am entirely comfortable with adopting yet, but the associate who directed me to this meeting made a case for it that I cannot refute.>"

 

The robot's query triggered an uncomfortable amount of introspection, which Ximena wasn't about to share with the group.

I wasn't a hero, or a villain. I was a victim.

And then I was just a victim who was trying not to be a victim anymore.

There were plenty of times when I stood by and allowed "villainy" to take place. My interference would certainly have failed, and cost me my life and possibly my soul in the process. Back then, I lacked the knowledge and power necessary to oppose evil. Letting it exist then was the price I paid to be able to oppose it now. Nobody else could teach me what I needed to know. Sacrifices had to be made. I played the long game.

That's what I tell myself when I try to sleep.

 

Quote

Salvo waved a hand around them, at the noodle shop they had all assembled under. "Looks to me like we have our place."

 

"You may want to choose a meeting place with fewer innocent bystanders sitting in the crossfire. As gracious as the Paks have been with their hospitality, and as delicious as their food is, gatherings like this are dangerous."

 

Quote

"I don't know if we should try and make a team or anything, I don't know how everyone here feels about that, because honestly, most of us have just met, but I really think we gotta find a way to stay in touch. Call for help when needed, pool our resources. Anyone is in danger, they call for help. Anyone get a lead on anything, we share it. Could be something as simple as a chat group, I can set up something secure, or, I dunno, weekly meetings and sharing out phone numbers? I could probably build some communicators for all of us."

 

"I do not carry a mobile phone, or any other electronic devices, nor do I intend to. But if you require my aid, or if you have information you wish to provide me, then contacting me is a simple matter. There is a bookstore, Mictlan, on University Hill. You can leave a message for me there. And I am closely attuned to the movements of the psychopomps, so if they are hovering near you in anticipation of your death, I may know of your peril before you do. Regardless, I can meet you in whatever place you choose. The laws of space and time work differently in the Underworlds than they do here. For one who can walk those paths, physical distance in this world matters little."

 

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Naomi yanked her hands out of Salvo’s grip as the heroine let go. She was mad. Grabbing a signer’s hands was about as rude as grabbing a speaking person’s mouth. Ruder, in her book. She’d actually had to stop herself from blasting the magitech heroine through the wall of the noodle shop. She was that angry. <Don’t. Do. That.> The subtitling slashed at the air instead of merely appearing, mimicking the movements of her hands. Hell, the air vibrated a little, creating a slight whine. She wasn’t going to sign anything else. She wore a mask too, or was Nicole blind as well as…she cut off that line of thought and exhaled softly. She purposefully turned away from her fellow Claremont alumni (not that she had visible lips to read) and welcomed the newcomer with a wave. <Hi, welcome to the meeting. I’m Waverider. This is Justice, who called us all here.> She started introducing everyone.

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Emerald Spider

No, no you really don’t get it. Networking and such is a really good thing, but to make a splash we need to be a symbols to people.” she waved her chopsticks around for emphasis

 

As a team working together we can counter whatever Mars and his ilk can throw at us, but we’ve got to be organised and all on track.” she though about something she’d read a few days ago in some magazine or other.

 

Some places are doing the whole civil defenders thing, we could do something similar. Those that want to act as the public front, but we look after each other either way.”

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The Meta-Naut

 

The Meta-Naut looked between everyone, noting no one had chosen so much as acknowledge her entry. Cool, cool, cool. So Emerald Cities at least had being abominably rude in common. Like sure they were talking to other people but most people at parties at least had the good graces to say 'hi' or whatever. The bare minimum of acknowledgement. Whatever. It didn't matter anyway. 

 

Grumbling, the Meta-Naut went and took a seat in the most distant corner, folding her arms and fuming. Saved the city from being turned into comic-book criminal stereotypes en masse, and been at this more than most of them, but sure, talk to Protectron first. He wasn't even around! SHE was around! This was the problem with mostly working in other dimensions. No one knew all the cool stuff you did. But they would if they asked!

 

Except then the Protectron greeted her, and suddenly she was the jerk. Of course. She'd been in this dimension travelling business to know the multiverse had something of a sense of humour and liked to humble people. She waved at the Protectron, smiling awkwardly. Please don't be a mind-reading robot.

 

"Uh, hey! Thanks, I'm sure we could find time to talk about it if you can set up the call! Totally... have time... to talk about my hero stuff," she said, glad she couldn't visibly blush. "You're cool too. Would love to talk to you about time stuff."

Edited by Shofet

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On 3/30/2020 at 12:15 PM, Zeitgeist Blue said:

"If we're to communicate with a system then I'd prefer not to share essential information like our leads in it. You have established that Mars had stolen your tech and until we really understand how then we should assume what you do is compromised." Salvo waved a hand around them, at the noodle shop they had all assembled under. "Looks to me like we have our place."

 

She looked down again at Justice and shrugged. "If you want to start now then get me an Ultio Suit. I have the skills. I have the experience in battlesuits and electronic surveillance. In a week's time we meet here again and I can tell you all that I've found."

 

Justice visibly deflated at the comment about Mars having stolen her tech and her being compromised... Yeah, yeah, Salvo was right, sure, but... but there was more to it, right? "Mars got some of my old tech." She crossed her arms. She wasn't angry. "Judging from what I've seen of the Ultio Suits, it was the stuff I worked on at the u... err, at the old place. I got a new place that's much more secure. But yeah, its a fair point. Good thing the old tech didn't have any communications tech in it, then." 

 

She should bring Salvo there, if she had all that tech she boasted about. Yeah, that would probably be a good idea, but so far, only Meta-Naut had seen the AnneX. "Only two ways to get hold of a suit as far as I know: Buy one, or grab one of a random guy. I don't really have the money for the first, and I dunno if anyone here is comfortable with grabbing a random guy that might just be trying to do good off the street. Still, solid plan." Her confidence was starting to build here, ever so slightly.

 

On 3/30/2020 at 5:32 PM, Growth Spurt said:

"Hello...folks..."

 

On 3/31/2020 at 3:31 AM, EternalPhoenix said:

<Hi, welcome to the meeting. I’m Waverider. This is Justice, who called us all here.> She started introducing everyone.

 

On 3/30/2020 at 9:09 PM, angrydurf said:

They were saved from further conflict by the timely arrival of Visionary however and he let it drop, "Hey, grab some noodles and pull up a chair we gonna save the city."

 

"Woah, nice. Good to see you, welcome!" People were just flocking in. Really... so many more than she had expected.

 

On 3/30/2020 at 11:11 PM, Grumblefloof said:

"I do not carry a mobile phone, or any other electronic devices, nor do I intend to. But if you require my aid, or if you have information you wish to provide me, then contacting me is a simple matter. There is a bookstore, Mictlan, on University Hill. You can leave a message for me there. And I am closely attuned to the movements of the psychopomps, so if they are hovering near you in anticipation of your death, I may know of your peril before you do. Regardless, I can meet you in whatever place you choose. The laws of space and time work differently in the Underworlds than they do here. For one who can walk those paths, physical distance in this world matters little."

 

She paused, just staring at the woman in the skull mask. She... she really didn't know what to say to that. Space and time, right. Magic, psychopomps hanging around if they were near death and... "I'm really sorry, but that sounds incredibly creepy. I'll leave a message, sure, but that whole psychopomp thing sounds really scary. I... I really don't think I wanna know more about that, sorry! And... err... I'm sorry, I didn't quite catch what you call yourself?" Quick pause. She was right, though. Using the Paks' place as a meeting spot wouldn't be a good idea, even if they didn't mind. "I'm with you on not using this place for regular meet ups. I know you don't mind," She looked over at Mrs. Pak with an apologetic smile, "but what if someone finds out and well... I don't want you guys to get hurt."

 

On 3/31/2020 at 9:19 AM, Tiffany Korta said:

No, no you really don’t get it. Networking and such is a really good thing, but to make a splash we need to be a symbols to people.” she waved her chopsticks around for emphasis

 

As a team working together we can counter whatever Mars and his ilk can throw at us, but we’ve got to be organised and all on track.” she though about something she’d read a few days ago in some magazine or other.

 

Some places are doing the whole civil defenders thing, we could do something similar. Those that want to act as the public front, but we look after each other either way.”

 

"Well... yeah. That actually sounds pretty good. I dunno if we could get city hall to make us anything official or anything like that, but we could at least work together, right?" She looked around at the rest. There was a lot of people in here. Some she knew a bit about, some she knew nothing, then there was the ones she actually knew and... well, there was a lot of people here. She looked over at Meta-Naut with a weak smile while she stayed in the corner.

 

Meta-Naut, Emerald Spider, Kanunu, Waverider, Salvo, Protectotron, Skullface Woman, Red Guy and herself, that was... 9 people? A lot of people to get working together, they'd need to get some time to make it all work... if everyone was interested, at least. Which was actually a good point.

 

"Uh, so... are all of you interested in forming a, well, a super team, I guess? Everyone working together? Don't wanna pressure anyone into doing something you don't want to. Just sharing info should be fine even if you don't join, right?"

 

ES clearly had ideas here, which was good.

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Salvo

 

Her arms crossed, Salvo's hands slowly curled into fists.

 

It was vexing, really, that Naomi had little idea about information security. The details she had divulged were uncomfortably close to everything one needed to find a trail that ended with one Nicole Whitfield-Hall taking her major in Para-Sciences at Emerald City University. The necromancer's subtitle party trick, one reason why she insisted on communicating through text, and Kanunu butting in where he had no business both did little to help matters.

 

Nicole sighed inside her head.

 

Perhaps she should still consider herself lucky that she had found Naomi. Claremont was so open, even encouraging, about what made the student-body special. Among the students themselves sneaking out of campus was an open secret while sneaking out to do superheroics made one a mini-celebrity.

 

But they were not in Claremont anymore. It was something she had learned the hard way.

 

Like Waverider, she turned away from the Claremont alumna.

 

***

 

Another newcomer, this one slightly familiar though she could not quite place him. Again the necromancer flaunting her magic.

 

7 hours ago, RocketLord said:

Justice visibly deflated at the comment about Mars having stolen her tech and her being compromised... Yeah, yeah, Salvo was right, sure, but... but there was more to it, right? "Mars got some of my old tech." She crossed her arms. She wasn't angry. "Judging from what I've seen of the Ultio Suits, it was the stuff I worked on at the u... err, at the old place. I got a new place that's much more secure. But yeah, its a fair point. Good thing the old tech didn't have any communications tech in it, then." 

 

She should bring Salvo there, if she had all that tech she boasted about. Yeah, that would probably be a good idea, but so far, only Meta-Naut had seen the AnneX. "Only two ways to get hold of a suit as far as I know: Buy one, or grab one of a random guy. I don't really have the money for the first, and I dunno if anyone here is comfortable with grabbing a random guy that might just be trying to do good off the street. Still, solid plan." Her confidence was starting to build here, ever so slightly.

"Third option." Salvo raised three fingers. "Steal one fresh from the factory."

 

No one of them would know it, but she was grinning in her mind's eye. It was illegal, sure, but she had meant what she had said. You don't play by the corporations' rules or games, so you learn to toe the line, and eventually cross it. She'd done it to survive for as long as she had and if presented with the opportunity to mess with those who held tightly onto power, then she'd gladly do so again.

 

They had their plan.

 

"Then we need to go to your old place. Figure out how he took your tech and bring what we found somewhere secure." Salvo shrugged. "Okay, so we use the witch's Mictlan bookstore in University Hill or decide on the venue before each meeting. A park. A sewer. One of the Albian river islands. It'll be safer and keep people guessing."

 

On 3/31/2020 at 3:19 PM, Tiffany Korta said:

Emerald Spider

No, no you really don’t get it. Networking and such is a really good thing, but to make a splash we need to be a symbols to people.” she waved her chopsticks around for emphasis

 

As a team working together we can counter whatever Mars and his ilk can throw at us, but we’ve got to be organised and all on track.” she though about something she’d read a few days ago in some magazine or other.

 

Some places are doing the whole civil defenders thing, we could do something similar. Those that want to act as the public front, but we look after each other either way.”

7 hours ago, RocketLord said:

"Uh, so... are all of you interested in forming a, well, a super team, I guess? Everyone working together? Don't wanna pressure anyone into doing something you don't want to. Just sharing info should be fine even if you don't join, right?"

 

"It's no skin off my back," Salvo replied when the topic turned to creating a team. "Keep in touch. Share leads. Work together. Being in a team doesn't need to be more complex than that. If we can get a sponsor then fine, I'm willing to try it out."

 

She paused. She was fine with a sponsor besides one exception.

 

"But no corporations."

Edited by Zeitgeist Blue

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Santa Muerte

 

The woman in black and red ate as the others spoke, seemingly paying more attention to her noodles than to her fellow superheroes. Appearances, however, could be deceiving. She was listening to every word. Or reading every word, in Waverider's case.

 

Quote

"I'm really sorry, but that sounds incredibly creepy. I'll leave a message, sure, but that whole psychopomp thing sounds really scary. I... I really don't think I wanna know more about that, sorry! And... err... I'm sorry, I didn't quite catch what you call yourself?"

 

She cocked her head slightly, raised an eyebrow at Justice almost imperceptibly, let her mouth slip into a wry half-smile, then glanced back at Protectron. "As I said, taboo." She turned back to Justice. "Some of my neighbors have taken to calling me 'Santa Muerte'. It is as good a name as any."

 

She turned back down to her mostly-empty bowl and made a couple of hand gestures over it while delivering another Ancient Atlantean incantation. "<Cleanse.>" The bowl was momentarily engulfed in green fire. When the flames vanished, the bowl and fork were both completely clean and dry. Then she made another gesture with a single hand, snapped her fingers, and commanded "<Hands without flesh, attend me.>". A pair of translucent glowing green hands appeared in mid-air in front of her. She nodded down to her bowl, then toward the counter. The hands lifted the bowl into the air and deposited it in front of the register before disappearing.

 

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"Only two ways to get hold of a suit as far as I know: Buy one, or grab one of a random guy. I don't really have the money for the first, and I dunno if anyone here is comfortable with grabbing a random guy that might just be trying to do good off the street. Still, solid plan."

 

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"Third option." Salvo raised three fingers. "Steal one fresh from the factory."

 

"If the legitimate acquisition of one of these suits truly is beyond all of your combined resources, then before you resort to petty larceny, you could simply ask someone who does own one if they would let you examine it. The wealthy are perpetual children. They love to show off their shiny new toys. The type of person with both the inclination and the capital required to make such a purchase likely also wishes to be seen as a peer of the 'superhero community'. Surely at least one of you possesses enough social cachet that they would crave your attention and approval. Barring that, the manufacturers themselves may very well roll out the red carpet for one of you, in the hopes of securing your public endorsement of their product."

 

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"Okay, so we use the witch's Mictlan bookstore in University Hill or decide on the venue before each meeting."

 

"Excuse me. Mictlan is a place where I can be contacted, but I am not volunteering it as a meeting place. My presence there protects the employees and residents more than it endangers them. I could not say the same for all of yours."

 

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"Uh, so... are all of you interested in forming a, well, a super team, I guess? Everyone working together? Don't wanna pressure anyone into doing something you don't want to. Just sharing info should be fine even if you don't join, right?"

 

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"It's no skin off my back. Keep in touch. Share leads. Work together. Being in a team doesn't need to be more complex than that. If we can get a sponsor then fine, I'm willing to try it out."

 

Santa Muerte stood up from her table. Green flames erupted from her eyes. "In the protection of this world and its people, I will render unto you whatever aid you require that I am able to provide." The flames evaporated, though her irises remained unnaturally green. "The oath is given. If I break it, there will be consequences."

 

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Naomi wasn’t the type to stay mad long. Besides, the hearing normally didn’t know that grabbing a signer’s hands was that rude. And you know…she was maybe being indiscreet with someone’s secret identity. Just a little. Always try to be nice. Never fail to be kind. She pulled out her phone and texted Nicole back. [Look, I think I overreacted a second ago. Maybe you don’t know, but grabbing a signer’s hands is as rude as grabbing a speaking person by the mouth. I’m sorry if I made you upset. I can see you’re sensitive about your secret identity, so I won’t bring it up again.] She hit send and put her phone away again, without taking it off of silent. She’d check it again in a minute.

 

She rejoined the conversation with an idea. <Emerald City University has a few buildings they barely use, if we need a place to meet we could ask to borrow one.> Wow, was…Santa Muerte’s spell ever turning out to be useful. So easy to catch up. <I like E S’s idea. Some in the bright lights and some sticking to the shadows. Though stealing is just too far. Sorry, Salvo. But that is what…> If a signer could in fact trail off, she managed it. What they taught Salvo and I at Claremont, was what she was going to say, but she couldn’t quite remember if super school was well known enough to do that. And besides, Nicole was sensitive about the issue, anyway. <…my mentor taught me.> She finished a bit lamely. It wasn’t a total lie. Spectacle had taught her a bunch about superheroing, and he probably learned some of it from his Claremont days, right? <Communicate openly with each other and work together to protect everyone. Salvo’s right. It doesn’t need to be any more complicated than that.> The newly named Santa Muerte just gave her another idea. <It would take a little research, but I think we can find  a rich kid with more money than brains. You know, the type who would be all too willing to show his fancy new toy to a pretty girl.> She grinned. <And it just so happens most of us here qualify as pretty girls.>

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Kimo carefully watched hte interactions between Salvo and Waverider but it seemed like they knew each other and the matter seemed settled if tense so he let it go and reclaimed hi schill vibe with a slow exhale.  "Uh I don't think the boo..."  He started to point out but Santa Muerte seemed to have shut that down soundly so he trailed off and let it lie.  He paused to collect his thoughts as there was a great deal all happening at once.

 

"I mean the whole municipal defender thing means working with the government an I dunno if you all noticed but Mars is kinda a big deal to the powers that be."  he pointed out with a wide shrug as he looked at the assembled heroes.  "But we are gonna need more than cell phones and this if we do a team thing."  he agreed heartily.  "I mean there are lotsa public places we can meet up to swap info but if we need a place to stick one of these suits or to hold evidence till we can hand it off to the authorities we need more yea?"

 

He frowned slightly and looked to Emerald spider who seemed to have alot of thoughts on the matter and the Justice who called this whole thing.  "Lets start with this."  He suggested focussing on those two for the moment, "I'm in."  he declared openly and without reservation.  "I'm good in a fight an all but this tech stuff, this whole tracking down corporate types doing shady business?"  he shook his head, "I can't do that on my own, you all need back up you just call me up."  he shrugged, "I figure that's a start right?"

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Emerald Spider

Finally having a look at all the new people that had slipped in Emerald Spider though to give them all a friendly wave, she’d never seen this place so packed really.

 

We do this we do this on the level, no stealing or con jobs. Besides the suits will be massed produced I can probably jam it with a simple inversion wave or even a jamming field for there telemetry they’ll most likely be using a singular frequency.” she smiled and gestured to her SPDR Rig

 

What you don’t just think I found this in the trash do you?”

 

On the second part she had a though, though she was sure not everyone would like it.

 

If we needed backing there’s always ArcheTech, it a corporation yes but they’re not based in Emerald City proper and is run by a Superhero. They’re as clean as a corporation can be, even if they’re not from the real Emerald City.” she had nothing against North Emerald City, it was a very long friendly rivalry between the two parts.

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On 4/2/2020 at 8:43 AM, EternalPhoenix said:

Naomi wasn’t the type to stay mad long. Besides, the hearing normally didn’t know that grabbing a signer’s hands was that rude. And you know…she was maybe being indiscreet with someone’s secret identity. Just a little. Always try to be nice. Never fail to be kind. She pulled out her phone and texted Nicole back. [Look, I think I overreacted a second ago. Maybe you don’t know, but grabbing a signer’s hands is as rude as grabbing a speaking person by the mouth. I’m sorry if I made you upset. I can see you’re sensitive about your secret identity, so I won’t bring it up again.] She hit send and put her phone away again, without taking it off of silent. She’d check it again in a minute.

Naomi sent a text and Nicole read it, and soon Salvo's shoulders were not quite so tense, her hands not curled into fists anymore. Having once been confined to a wheelchair, she knew what it was like for people not able to understand her or to treat her in unintentionally insulting manners. She'd harden her heart to those but finding herself the giving end of an insult made her frown in embarrassment.

 

When Naomi would check her texts in a minute, she'd find a message waiting for her. [I didn't know or mean to. It's no excuse but still... I'm sorry for grabbing your hand. And ty. I'd like to meet up in our civvie IDs sometime. That ok?]

 

***

More ideas were thrown on how to acquire an Ultio suit and on how to store the hardware they would find.

 

So far, Santa Muerta had a point. The bookstore would endanger the customers and those civilians around it, same as meeting repeatedly in the Paks' noodleshop would. The ECU buildings posed slightly less of a problem but would still see them closely tied to the campus. They needed something, if not habitable, then permanent but also out of the way with any civilians.

 

A more immediate problem was the acquisition of the Ultio suit. It seemed the heroes here did not have the stomach for corporate theft. There was jamming a used suit and scanning it. But then there was simply... asking and Salvo had to admit it the solution was an elegant one if they found someone willing.

 

So many options, any of them doable really.

 

Salvo looked to Justice.

 

"It's your op, Justice. Your tech. You should decide."

 

***

Kanunu had a point about the relationship of Mars and the government, which is a relationship that could be extended to all mega-corporations really. She reassessed her thoughts of who else she couldn't trust. At the rate she was going, in a few weeks she'd be down to one hand with those she could trust even a little bit.

 

Then Emerald Spider spoke up with another suggestion.

 

"Absolutely not." Salvo shook her head vehemently. "No corporations. And besides, this topic is immature considering we haven't even begun to work together. We should shelve it until we prove we can handle something as a team."

Edited by Zeitgeist Blue

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"So...We're going to do like, an actual team? We got a name for that?"

Visionary has taken a seat next to the others, although he doesn't order. Advantage of synthetic life is that you don't have to eat

"Also I'm the Visionary by the way...I'm, uh, new"

 

"

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Justice looked over to Visionary, looking rather apologetic. "I, ah, don't think we're really there yet? We got a team, but I don't think we're quite at a name yet."

 

Alright, most everyone seemed interested in teaming up to some degree at least. That was good, right? Already solving problems, coming up with ways to try and get their hands on an Ultio Suit, much more than she probably would have and... all looking to her to actually make the decision of what they were gonna do about the whole thing. That was actually a fair thought. She was the one that had brought them all here. Still, it felt weird being the one that had to make decisions.

 

"Alright, alright, no corporations or anything, at least not yet. We need to find some way to make things run around, and I'm not really made of money, but we'll see what we can do, right? So, we got three things we gotta decide, right?" She held out her right hand, and started counting fingers as she listed the items on the agenda. "How we try to get our hands on an Ultio Suit, a place to meet and," she looked over at Visionary with a grin, "what we're gonna call ourselves. I'm open to suggestions there!"

 

"I'm not really comfortable stealing stuff like that. Gotta be better than the bad guys, right? And if I know Mars, he'll probably have some kinda alarm in those suits, so I'm guessing our best bet is to... get some rich kid to give it to us?" She felt kinda dirty at the thought. She really didn't want to do things like that, but it was betetr than outright stealing, right?

 

"I, um, got a place we can use to meet, but its kiiinda difficult to get to." She rubbed her right arm with her left hand. "I mean, I can get there, I can bring everyone there, but I'll need some time to set up something if everyone's gonna be able to get there on their own. Its... well... its kinda far away?" Yeah, how was she gonna explain that? The AnneX was kind of her place... and now she really thought it needed a much better name. "Sorry, its kind of a personal place, I'm still getting used to the idea of other people using it." She realized something. "Oh, right, Meta-Naut's been there! My workshop and all that, remember? What do you think, does that like something that could be used if I figure out a way to get people there without needing me to ferry everyone?"

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