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The Eye, the Bird, and the Arrow

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The Boardwalk
Freedom City, New Jersey.
Thursday, April, 2nd 2020
10:00 PM


"I'm telling you.  Frank has the best hot dog cart on the Boardwalk.  Back when I had a penthouse here, It was my stakeout food of choice"  Foreshadow told Raven before taking a bite.  The prescient acrobat's cape fluttered in the wind as he stood on the sign of a run down hotel.  The sign flickering in the night.  The heirs to two heroic legacies in Freedom City had met up to discuss an auction that supposedly included powered individuals as items of sale going on in the Atlantis casino.   "Oh!  The kid's good.  Solid nine out of ten for style."

Down below the latest hero to don the mantle of Archer had been following an armored car that was transporting bags of cash from a casino.  It had been stolen in the morning by a group of five ex special forces soldiers.  The driver employed by the armored car company.  They had almost gotten away with it until Archer tracked them down leading to a pursuit through the streets of the Boardwalk.

Just now two thermite arrows that had been placed before the chase had started were set off from tire welds.  Sending the vehicle careening in such a way so that the armored car was actually stuck in the one way entrance of an alleyway the opposite end blocked off by the back entrance to a meat market.  The crash location gave both heroes perched above a clear view of the processions below.    Two of the thieves came out into the alleyway with riot shields.  Which provided them a degree of protection, but not to the degree that staying inside the armored car.

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Archer II


It had been a longer chase than Connor had cared for. He had to jump on a bike, promising a guy that he would bring it back, and making a mental note to make sure to borrow one of the old man's bikes soon, but, he had caught up, staying close. Had even got some arrows into the wheels.


Finally, the right moment. The armored car was in just the right spot, and Connor set off the thermite arrows, taking out the wheels. When all you had was a bow and a ton of different arrows, you had to get creative. No laser vision to stop a car.


Two men coming out of the car, each with a riot shield. These guys were pros, they came prepared. "Oh no, shields. My greatest weakness." 


Stepping off from the bike, he reached behind into his quiver, selecting an arrow, touching a certain point, and the quiver did it works. His hands moved like lightning. Nocking the arrow, taking aim, letting it fly directly between the two men. On impact, it exploded into a quick expanding grey foam, that would harden within seconds.

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"You're acting like I dissed his dogs, 'shadow. I told you, they're good. I'm just not a huge hot dog guy. Gimme a burger or some schwarma or a wrap. But. Good dog."


Raven took a bite and gave it slow, measured chews. He swallowed, then spoke again.


"There some kind of site for guys like this? Must have missed it last time I patrolled the Dark Web. Feel like this keeps happening. Isn't that what guys like us do? Make foundations for stuff?"


He tilted his head a bit to track the latest barrage from the legacy arrow-slinger.


"Interesting angle of attack. "

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One of the armored car thieves was able to turn his riot shield in time to avoid being stuck in the foam.  He quickly retreated further in the alley way and dropped to a knee before firing a burst of shots in Archer's direction.  The aptly named hero was quicker to the draw and ducked down underneath the bike before the squeeze of the trigger.  Easily avoiding the errant shots before rising back to his feet.  The other armored thief had fared just as poorly.  His body was completely enveloped in the foam.  Shield stuck against him like an armored cocoon.


Just then two more thieves would swing their legs up and acrobatically swing themselves on to the roof of the armored car.  Taking off into dead sprints with equally impressive agility they would leap off the car and make a run for Archer.  Moving in a serpentine patter the would flank Archer on each end.  Each armed with large dagger sized knives they would threateningly stab out to cut off his means of retreat.  None were committal enough to actually stab into him.  But, it limited his mobility enough to distract as the last man came storming out of the vehicle jumping off the seat and diving down in an attempt to drive his knife into Archer. 

The attempt came closest to landing an attack.  And if Archer were any less skilled he may not have been able to contour his body at an angle quick enough to avoid the airborne attack.

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Foreshadow whistled as the bow wielding hero avoided four attackers simultaneously.  Seemingly without breaking a sweat.  It was an entertaining sight as he clearly had control of the situation.  "I played with glue when I started out too.  Little sticky bombs. But, my guy doesn't have your gal's connections.  Though I'm sure they probably share a chiro now.  Hard to buy replacement parts starting out when your only intermediary works with stocks.  I guess I could've made it.  But, the science stuff isn't me.  Wonder where he gets his wonderful toys?"

He then scratched his chin as he pondered Raven's question on foundations.  "Oh, I started one.  Well am starting one with the missus.  Workshopping some names.  But, this is a test run of the algorithms in the software she set up to uncover Superhuman trafficking and underground genetic manipulation.  Honestly, I think it picked up after the invasion a few years ago.  Not sure if it's a coincidence or not"


The prescient acrobat then took another bite before sitting down on the sign.

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Archer II


One guy stuck in the riot foam, the other running. Connor grimaced, reached for another arrow, then stopped as the last three robbers emerged from the car, all pulling out knives. Because of course they were. They moved faster than Connor anticipated, circling him. Not much room to move or get out of the way, the last one coming at him and... Connor moved to the side, out of the reach of the knife. 


Close quarters. Not ideal for using any arrows. Improvise, then. He'd trained for this with the old man, not like he could always expect to keep everyone away. When the leader of the bunch jumped at him, he leaned to the side, barely evading.


Grabbing the bow with both hands, he first stabbed it into the guts of the man on the left, then pulled back, swinging it into the face of the robber on the right. SMACK! Turning back to the man he had first hit, Connor smacked him on the side of the head with the bow, before spinning towards the man that had jumped at him. A strike to the shoulder, then the guts to make him bend over, then, a full force blow to the face to knock him down.


Three down, one stuck, one to go.


"You better not try to run from me!" he shouted after the last one, as he reached for an arrow. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

"Let me know once you've got it up and running, we'll throw some money at it. Hate to see legit vets get tossed into the meat grinder like this."


He watched Archer work, and nodded at a few creative moves the slightly-younger hero pulled.


"Hn. Meta-trafficking."


Foreshadow knew there was history just from the way Raven said that, but the other cowl-wearing hero wasn't forthcoming for the moment.


"Might be, might not. Situations like that make folks nervous. Nervous breeds bad ideas. 'Need my own army' bad, sometimes."


He chuckled at Archer's comment to the fleeing mercenary.


"They almost always run."

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The conscious but only figuratively stuck between an arrow and a hard place guard swung around.  The guy wasn't heeding Acher's warning.  Not by choice at least.  He was simply running out of running space without breaking into a nearby building.  His decision making was expedient, clearly not slowing down due to being the last one left the armored thief squeezed his trigger.  Another round of bursts fired out.   

The intent was  most likely to hit Archer with a bullet.  As was usually the case when one shot at you.  The result was instead the armored car that blocked the alley gave a few resounding clicks as the gunman failed to clear the obstacle this time.  One of the bullets stuck in the quick hardening glue.  Cracks slightly visible on the surface if one were to take a very close gander.

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Foreshadow began whistling The Good the Bad and the Ugly  only stopping just before the soldier shot out.  The prescient acrobat shook his head having foreseen how it was about to go.  Not that he was disjointed by the actual lack of bullet wounds.  Quite the opposite.  But,  he was just wanted to make another tongue in cheek joke.  "Just hate to see it.  A blown lead after half-time.  Heart just wasn't in on the game."


"Disciplined or not.  These robbing vets are way too silent for my liking.  At least Robin Hood over there remembered the pageantry of it all."

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Of course he ran. They always run. Which meant that either Connor would have to shoot them in the back, or he would have to chase them. 


They probably wouldn't like the outcome of either action.


The guy in the riot foam was struggling. Might be breaking free soon, it wasn't like it would last that long, but, that was fine. Connor reached for a couple of stun arrows, ready to stop the guy stuck in the foam for good, when the other guy started shooting at him again. 


Weaving to the side, Connor moved out of the way, then raised his bow with the two arrows ready on the string and let them fly towards their target. Fine, he wanted to be a pain in the ass, then he'd get the stun arrows.

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  • 2 weeks later...

"Seems like the bow-users like to talk more than some of us."


Raven's cowl completely hid his eyes, and his sight seemed fixed on the scene in the alleyway. But Foreshadow knew, even without his powers, that he was getting just a bit of side-eye at that comment. 


"You noticed that the kid's bow looks a lot heftier than pictures of predecessors? Need to ask him if he's punching with it. Nothing wrong with that, just kind of curious."


He chewed thoughtfully for a moment as he finished off his hot dog.


"The arrows are kind of nice for lots of options to toss off at folks. My armor's modular systems are nice, but there is certainly some appeal for deciding that someone 15 feet away really needs a few volts to sit down ad behave. Can't pack the same punch into hand-thrown projectiles and have any range at all."


He glanced down at his gloves as he flexed them.


"Though taser-punches are really satisfying."

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  • 10 months later...

"I had to cut down on the armor early on.  I need to be mobile to be me."  Foreshadow responded.  "But, yeah that bow definitely looks like it would hurt if you were to get whacked with it.  Good way to break your string, but he looks like he knows what he's doing."  Foreshadow took the last bites of his own hot dog and gave his own glance towards Raven's gloves.


After picturing how many criminals had made the mistake of running afoul of those taser gloves he simply nodded in agreement. But not before pulling out one of his staves hitting a button to switch its configuration to the stun mode so the high voltage sparks could arc in the air.  "I agree, it is shockingly a lot of fun."  As the pair above spoke the last thief was felled by the bow wielding hero below.  Putting an end to the commotion below.


"I think we should go down and do a little networking?  Wouldn't hurt to have a third for this underground auction"

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Last one down. Good.


Pulling out an arrow with standard head, Connor moved towards the men stuck in the riot foam. 


"Any chance you're gonna tell me what this whole thing was all about?"


He kind of doubted he'd get anywhere with them like this. He had taken them all down in moments, but either this guy was a pushover, or he just wouldn't talk at all.

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Which statement Raven was actually responding to with that little quip was just mysterious enough to make it clear he was having a bit of fun with Foreshadow. The bird-inspired hero allowed his psychic comrade to begin his descent first. A moment later, he simply spread his cape in his arms and stepped off the ledge. 


The angle was such that he descended behind Archer. He did so silently and quickly. The criminal would likely spot the winged shadow with glowing greenish-white eyes, but Archer seemed just intent enough on the interrogation as to miss it. Raven landed without a sound several feet back, and slowly stood up. He drew his cloak about himself, and just stood there, a glowing-eyed sentinel of the night. Watching the trapped man. Judging him. 



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