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Burnham Military Camp

Near Christchurch

Aotearoa/New Zealand

 

July 3nd, 2021

 

On the first day of the Matariki celebrations an army of giants appeared from the Southern Alps, marching upon the city of Christchurch. With no time to respond the New Zealand Armed Forces had to turn to other sources of help. And so, the day after Matariki the government of Aotearoa put forth a call for heroes.

 

At Burnham Military camp a liaison waited for the heroes to arrive, smiling when relief when the four heroes were assembled in front of the building. "Thank you all for coming so swiftly."

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Little Mermaid II

 

It had finally been time for vacation! Mette had been busy this last year. Busier than she had ever felt before. The Rurland stuff, joining Vanguard, the whole thing with the fairy tales, fighting King Crab a few times... Yeah. It had been a busy year. Kinda like she had just suddenly gained some kind of cosmic narrative importance or something like that, but that was just silly. 

 

New Zealand was the destination! She'd wanted to go since her parents had shown her the Lord of the Rings movies, so now she finally had the chance, and...

 

Then giants.

 

Because of course giants.

 

She couldn't really not help, after all. People were in danger. She was already heading towards Christchurch when the call went out, so she just made sure to get there faster.

 

Seemed like she was the first to arrive, waving with a grin at the military liason. "Happy to help, sir! Which of the giants do you want me to hit first?"

Edited by RocketLord
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Sea Devil had kept her armor on, and her distance from the soldiers, at least until the New Zealand officers started explaining to them what was happening. Concealed in green and black armor that had obviously been recently painted with the New Zealand Ensign, she crouched and moved with a posture that didn't seem quite human, and her voice was a booming mechanical buzz that sounded artificial. "We will help you with your big monster problem," she spoke in a firm croak, "things that come from the mountains above should not be." She wondered if it would be weird to ask if the giants were food, then decided it probably would be weird, people usually did not like it when she asked about that, so she kept her substantial tongue in her head. 

 

Instead she leaned on her trident and crouched slightly, bending great knees in front of her, and said "Have you heard their song? Or do they not speak to you?" 

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"I don't hear anything yet." Next to the heavily armored Sea Devil, Jessie made an incongruous picture in her khaki trousers, light blouse and sturdy hiking boots. A strap across her chest did secure her shield to her back, but it also served as a holder for her water bottle, camera, and phone case. Unlike her friend, Jessie hadn't really come prepared for action, but so long as she had her fists and her baton she was always pretty much ready. She turned to study the young woman who'd arrived ahead of them. "Hi, I'm Jessie, and this is, um, Sea Devil," she introduced herself. 

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Zhenschina-voin

Couple of years ago Klara had run into a few Maori women in London for an international rugby match. After a few drinks and a bit of a tussle she’d been invited to visit there lovely country, an offer that still applied when everyone sobered up. As always happened she’d finally managed to arrange a trip at just the same time as Mette, though she’d hadn’t said anything she wasn’t going to impose on her colleagues holiday when she had her own plans for the next few weeks.

 

Indeed she’d been getting ready with Tracy to go visit a little Moa sanctuary, a local villain had for some reason clones a few of the beasts, when the giants attack came on the local news. As much as Klara wanted to she wasn’t going to bother, New Zealand had its own heroes after all, but Tracy came in face all determined pulling on her coat.

 

Well come on then lets go see what we can do, you’d be all techy if we didn’t go and take a look. And lets be honest you just want to go punch giants.”

 

So a few minutes later the two of them touched down close to the other heroes, the 7ft tall hero as always standing out a little.

 

Hello there I ‘m here to help if I can…” she looked over at the woman who looked old enough to be her mother “We both are if we can!”

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If the army liaison was perturbed by the eclectic mixture of individuals coming to his nation's defence he didn't show it, although there was a somewhat confused look at Aquaria's comment about things from mountains. With a small nod the man spoke again, "It's nice to see you all so eager, if you'd all follow me we have a briefing room ready so that we can point you in the right direction."

 

The room he led them to was dominated by a large table with a map of the area with a handful of points marked with pins and small notes saying what the place is. The only other occupant is a well dressed, elderly Māori man who slowly stands to greet the heroes, his eyes lingering on Klara before moving on. The liaison cleared his throat before speaking again. "This is Hunu Huhapo, he's the leader of a local Hapū. He was asked to come in to offer insight on the situation after the giants were identified as likely being from Māori stories."

 

The old man nodded, "Tēnā koutou. The giants are called the Maero, the stories tell that Māori drove them into the mountains and forests after coming from Hawaiki and that they kill and eat both animals and people." He grimaced as he looked to the liaison, "We should count ourselves lucky that the towns near where they are were evacuated quickly."

 

The military man nodded, looking to the heroes. "We have limited reconnaissance, since we've been keeping our distance on the ground and they have some magic users who can conjure storms strong enough that planes and helicopters can't get near them. We know that they've reached Windwhistle on the near side of the Rakaia river with an advance force, while the main body hasn't started moving overly much yet. The primary thing we need is to either take and hold the bridge or destroy it, since that would force them to head downriver to advance, giving us more time to mobilize, but if possible we'd appreciate any other help you could offer."

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Jessie listened carefully to the briefing, her brow furrowed but her face otherwise neutral. "What is the endgame?" she asked the military man curiously. "What are you hoping to do with them once you've mobilized your forces? Do we need to put them back in the mountains somewhere, or will you be trying to find some way to put them in jail?" She looked over at the elder. "And, um, do the stories you know tell about any ways of making them mad? Like things people could do that would make them want to chase somebody and ignore things like civilians and towns?" 

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Little Mermaid II

 

The armored hero with the weird posture kind of bugged Mette. There was something about the way they moved and talked, even through the obviously changed voice. It was... weird. She wasn't sure why, just reminded her of something.

 

Klara was there. Which was... weird. What was the odds, right? But at least there was someone Mette knew.

 

"Any idea about how many giants that's around? And taking out the bridge... can't they just walk across the water, if they're that big? Or do they got some issue with water or something like that? Sorry, I really don't mean to be disrespectful or anything, but I don't really know anything about Maori myths." 

 

They shouldn't waste too much time, right? Should get there as soon as they could.

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"If they go in the water, Singularity and I will have surprises for them," Sea Devil predicted confidently. "We are very good in the water. And we are very good at getting big things to chase us." She rapped the butt end of her trident against the ground for emphasis, then added, "Do they live in the mountains all the time?" She looked around, doing a distinctly odd movement with her head and shoulders that suggested she wasn't actually swiveling her neck while doing so. "We do not know your land!" she added firmly. "We came here from a land called America! There was nothing about giants in the mountains in the book SIngularity told me to read, but there are many things not in your books!

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Little Mermaid II

 

"I'm... very good in water too," Mette replied, with some slight hesitation. Her lips slowly split into a grin. Oh, she was starting to get ideas now.

 

"How much water do you need? I can... kinda create water everywhere." 

 

She held up her right hand, a floating bubble of water roughly the size of a fist appearing, hovering above her palm.

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The liaison nodded along to the questions, while Hunu remained stoic. "Currently there isn't much plan given the short notice and lack of information. If we can force them to the negotiation table then that would be ideal. Any prisoners we take will be treated with dignity, regardless of any difficulties we may have when incarcerating them. As to crossing the river, most of the Maero are not particularly massive, around three to three and a half meters tall, although some are significantly bigger. Additionally, the storms they've been conjuring have resulted in much larger volumes of water coming down the river. Their options would be to either stop the storms, allowing us to attack them while they attempt to ford the river or forcing them to go the long way around. As to numbers, we don't have any hard data, but we know that there are over a hundred."

 

The man then looks to his elderly compatriot to explain the more mythological side of the issue. "The stories that I know do not speak of any ways in which you could aggravate the Maero, but given their repute for savagery it is likely that many attempts at provocation would work." He looked slightly askance at Sea Devil, as did the liaison. "The Maero that are attacking now will have lived in the mountains and forests since the Māori drove them there."

 

The two men looked as The Little Mermaid showed off, Hunu then continuing. "Are there any more questions, or is that everything you wanted to know?"

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Zhenschina-voin

Klara had spent a little time in the States and came across a few things, most of which she still couldn’t officially talk about.

 

No Paul Buynan then? Though I guess he’s more for the forest than the mountains, nice guy… so I’ve heard.”

 

After a quick friendly smile she returned to the problem at hand?

 

Do we know if there was a negotiated deal going on here? If some idiot broke something ti might explain why the giants are upset. And as fun as it is to go up against giants we should try at least to negotiate with them and see if we can solve all this peacefully.”

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"Oh, well, nine or ten feet tall isn't too bad," Jessie decided, relieved. "If we just need to divert them and buy time, that shouldn't really be a problem." Fighting large groups of enemies didn't bother her, and if they were tougher than humans, all the better. It was easier to fight when she didn't have to constantly worry about accidentally maiming or killing somebody. "I guess all we really need then, is a map and a way to get there. Sea Devil and I can get ourselves there if we need to, but I don't know about everyone else." She gave their colleagues a half-apologetic glance for not knowing their abilities. 

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Little Mermaid II

 

That... wasn't so big. Not so big that Mette couldn't make the water deep enough, at least.

 

She almost deflated entirely at the last bit. Right, of course, they had to just subdue them, figure out what was wrong... not nearly as easy as fighting some rampaging sea monster. Those she could just punch.

 

"We can get there. Right?" She looke over at Klara. Sure, she could run or jump or just swim there or something, but she was pretty sure that Klara had some tricks too.

 

"So, point us in the right direction?"

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