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Beyond the Pale

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La Puma Negra


Puma was now standing right there in front of the pastor, looking at him directly with a growl. She was starting to see it now, it was all coming clear to her with this distraction as she took her hand, "If you think that there is a bridge in Freedom City I can sell you. Eres un Idiota," she says, thinking that maybe at this point that she was again. Puma had gone on for too long with this little bit as she raised her hand , no claws this time, too lazy at this point, and slashed down just with her fingers.


"I'm tired of playing games."

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And lo, behold,


La Puma's hand passed straight through the priest, for the priest was not made of flesh, not blood, neither was he made of bone, nor sinew. 


La Puma's hand swished through pale smoke, that swirled and curled around her fingers. 


"Oh dear..." muttered Juan. "It was a pretty good illusion, though, wasn't it?" he gabbled, hopping from foot to foot and flapping his hand. "What gave it away? Do you have special eyes, or something? errr.... you won't do anything like rip out my throat will you? I hope you aren't angry..."


"She's angry" hissed the invisible Tazel, with an icy laugh. 


"Oh dear. Look, you don't want to go attacking a superhero like me, with lots of valuable mystic powers that can be used for good, just because I transformed some chior boys into dogs and made an illuison of a clergyman. That would be wrong on so many levels, why, for starters... I...hfghfh cough cough cough... and that's just for starters! There are lots of other very good and obvious reasons that I am sure someone as wise as you instantly grasps and doesn't need me to explain..."


Jaun looked at La Puma with wide eys. 



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Carmen "La Puma Negra"


Tazel was absolutely correct, and if the werecat didn't look outright demonic before, she did now, turning to him and rather quickly walking forward to him. She was not pleased at all, Puma having been almost tricked into thinking that she was speaking to the actual priest from earlier that night, wanting nothing more now to get out her aggression on someone that really seemed to deserve it. Both hands were balled into a fist now, and there was only one thing left in her mind.

A single punch was thrown, one that came as soon as she came within distance to the strange albino man. The werecat had enough of his shenanigans and was showing it with brutal and sudden violence of a closed fist, "No more damn games!"

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Juan reeled under the impact of the fist, spinning around and onto the Church organ, which he reflexively caught in order to break his fall. 


The Organ gave out an unpleasant discordant stab of sound. 


"You swine!" curesed Juan, a bruise already forming over one eye and cheek, easily seen with his fragile, pale skin. "No... not swine. Cat! Well, lets play cats versus dogs!"


From behind her, La Puma could hear the dog children bark and yell and scamper towards her on their feet. 


"Disgusting!" came the hiss of Tazel through the ether. 


Juan waved his hands around the air, swishing the pale smoke one way and another. In a moment, his form melted as he became a puff of smoke himself. 


"Haha!" he gloated. "Didn't see that coming did you? And now... haha! You won't see anything at all!"


The pale smoke around them thickened and coallesced in front of La Puma's eyes! Like the thickest of thick fog, she couldn't see her own claws in front of her!

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Carmen "La Puma Negra"

"Bastard," she spoke as she swatted away the smoke from her eyes and struck Juan, giving him likely a nasty shiner for the morning after. She was done playing games with, rearing back her fist to strike him again before he disappeared into his own smoke. He was definitely annoying, as she back away a step, she could hear the sound of those beastly children upon her, gearing up to fight them off the best she could.

"Tazel!" she called out, commanding in a tone befitting a masterly command, even if it wasn't meant for such, "Give me a way to see this idiot!"


Puma didn't need to see, bringing out the claws as she pushed her senses hard to compensate. Hyper hearing and smell, ways to see in the obscuring smoke that now surrounded her, "Alright kids, time to show who's the top of the food chain."

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"What am I?" hissed Tazel. "Your pet demon? I had decades of that with the cursed Cantos!"


He paused. Invisible, but La Puma could smell his sulfur. And see little flashes of light. Tazel was literally spitting fire. 


"But I think our interests align-and you have proved good to your word so far..."


He burst into a flame, a vortex of fire and wind, quite easy to see now. The smoke around them swirled ominously, menacingly, but was now lit by the Fire of Tazel-it did not dissapate, not as such, but it was no luminescent, and what was pure smoke was now more of a bright fog. Quite spooky, perhaps even quite beautiful. A pale smoke, a pale moonlit smoke. 


"Get her!" screamed Juan. "She hit me! She hit me, right in the face! With her fist! Bully!"


The dog boys started pounding towards her. 

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Carmen "La Puma Negra"


"Bring it!" Puma smiled. From robbing a museum to fighting a pack of nasty dog children and their crazed sycophantic master, this was the best part, charging forward at the kids with a wild look in her eyes. She felt sorry for them for just a moment as she came towards them in a charge like fashion, near pouncing on one as she came at it quickly and without much hesitation. What followed was a kick that sent the first of her so called prey away in a tumble, knocked away with a barely an issue. The dog boy was rendered completely knocked out.

The next one would be just as unlucky as after kicking the first away she'd barrel into the other with a clawed fist, hitting just as hard and knocking him out in a heap. It would hurt when they awoke but it wouldn't kill them, Puma now going for the other just barely managed to get out of the way in time of her strike. Puma meant business.

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"Stop it! Stop it!" yelled Juan. 


"Kill them! Kill them!" yelled Tazel. 


"Brute!" screamed Juan. "Punching choir boys! The Devil will be forging some special chains for you! Just stay still, let them bite you... call it pennance! If you do that, then you will be distracted and not pay attention to my escape!"


"IDIOT!" Screamed Tazel even louder. 


The two remaining Choir boy-dogs, on all fours, scuttled around La Puma and, without any fear or hesitation, leapt at her. They seemed full to the brim of a bezerker fury, taking no mind to their own defence, purely forcused on attaching their strange Jaws to La Puma's strange legs. 


And one of them managed!


He clamped his teeth around her thigh, and started to squeeze with ferocious strength...

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Carmen "La Puma Negra"


Puma cried out as she was surrounded and then bitten by one of the two remaining monster children, a feral cry that sounded just as animalistic as they did. It wasn't all that bad, barely breaking the skin before she managed to get him off of her leg. For the trouble, she let loose a wild kick in his direction, but it wasn't well aimed. A spur of the moment attack that wasn't really something that she was proud of per say. She could do far better.


The children were nuisances, the real target was the man that was the center of her attention. This prick had seriously made a night that could have been somewhat relaxing a mess, and now she was going to start venting some of that anger out as she zoomed in on his position.


"Tazel, slow those kids, do whatever you can do!"

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"WHAT?" roared Tazel, his anger making him appear visible again - a fiery skeleton three feet high, burning with fury. "Five decades I have been bound to the Cantos sorcerer, and now you have the impudence to order me again! I am already burning the fog away, and yet still you demand more! Demand, demand, take, take! My patience is frayed, my feline friend! Frayed to the point of snapping!"


Juan gave a weak chortle. "Best buddies! Best buddies! You really are the bestest of bestest buddies! Hahahaha!"


His smoky body started wisping towards the Church front door. 


"Goodbye Tazel! I may have failed to snare you this time, but Juan Kerr knows when to cut his losses! Next time, I shall be properly prepared! With Pentagrams and candles made of virgin blood... or something like that. Something that will work! Muahahahaha!"


"IDIOT!" screamed Tazel, belching fire. 


The two remaining Choir dog-boys leapt at La Puma's legs once more, and both of them managed to grab their teeth into her fur, and start to squeeze, driving their magically mutated teeth into her sweet and suculent flesh!

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Carmen "La Puma Negra"


Was still duking it out with these small miscreants that it was hard to keep track of the two. Both of them were hard pressing her ability to fight two foes at a time, and with a relative speed that was getting close to her own. Naturally however, this wouldn't stop her from dealing out the certain punishment they were owed, regardless of them being just trapped kids after attempting to bite her. It was even more so after one of them managed to get through with just that, finding purchase into her leg, erupting a cry of pain as it ripped into her thigh.


Naturally she'd respond with maybe a bit more violence than she should have had as she kicked him off into a wall while the other received a solid strike from strong a slash of her claw. Now there was nothing standing between her and where Juan was, moving towards him quickly, "Juan!" 

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The Choir Boy-Dog children layed around La Puma, knocked out. Her kindness had saved them from scars or blood. 


Juan didn't even pay his minions a second glance. He was now pale smoke like his candle fumes, laughing as he floated out of the Church. 


"Hahahaha! Smoked ya!" he hollered, the echo reverberating around the Church in quite a pleasant manner - that was, after all, what the architect had in mind. 


It was still dark outside, but the stars were out, and La Puma could see perfectly. Juan was slowly ascending, wafting up in the thin alleyway between the run down church and the delapitated "Bargain Busterz" warehouse-shop next door that looked like it had been abandoned in the 18th century and was still intact out of pure spite. The alley was narrow, the building maybe three stories high. 


And Juan was already at the first floor, at the level of a few cracked and flickering street lamps....

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  • 2 weeks later...

Carmen "La Puma Negra"


Puma was fuming visibly, growling with her claws and gritting her teeth like she was chewing on the toughest piece of steak she had ever eaten. He was getting away and there was nothing that she could physically do. Even in her more aggressive and angered state of mind she still had enough common sense not to go after essentially thin air. Smoke wisps that trailed up to the roof opening of the building and towards alley way, he was getting away.


Without speaking, Puma ran towards the wall and began to climb up the dilapidated buildings interior side, leaping around like a mad cat as she attempted to keep pace. If she couldn't catch him, she could easily enough keep up with him with her own ability, using her leaping abilities and natural prediction for climbing to let her keep the pace with him. Puma wasn't just going to let him get away from her so easily now.


"Tazel, what do we have to stop him!?"

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La Puma could jump up the buildings like a feline superhero - with grace, speed, and penache. She was faster that the smoke plume of Juan, but she would be running out of building floors soon. Two more stories, then the roof, then the open moonlit sky. 


Through the hot night air, the Cantos Devil stick flew. 


Tazel called out, a touch of glee in his voice, a note of cruel and bitter victory. 


"Catch!" he called, as the Devil stick was lobbed into the air. Was it Tazel, or was it the stick itself? Or some other force? Who could tell? But it shot into the the reach of La Puma. 


"The Devil stick can hurt anybody, anything!" called Tazel. "Wicked, it is! Ghosts, demons, or cowardly sorcerors who turn into plumes of smoke to run away from their rightful destiny of being burned alive! Hahahahaha! Got you now, Juan!"


Of course, catching the Devil stick as it flew upwards, inbetwixt two buildings and just out of reach was another matter...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Carmen "La Puma Negra"


Puma continued to climb, and climb, leaping to and fro upward further and faster than she had ever done before. The young woman was determined, willing to push herself to the very limits in order to catch this man. Something that was inside her at the moment compelled her to stop him, no matter what, even if her own hands couldn't, she was compelled to him. After all, Puma had a promise to keep and she wasn't going to just break it, regardless of whom it was with as she heard someone shout out.


The young heroine would turn as she leapt upward, seeing someone throw her the Devil's Stick. She didn't know if it was Tazel or the stick itself, but it flew towards her, reaching out to grab it as quick as she could. At first it would near slip from her fingers before she finally reached out and fully grasped it, taking it into her hands, feeling the power and evil of such a strong device that was now there in her hands.


She'd aim it towards Juan, willing her thoughts to do something against Juan, anything to stop him.

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The Devil Stick whispered to her...


...whispered about being a key, a prison, a lock all wrapped up in one complicated architecture. Fire, metal, smoke...


Carlos Cantos forged the devil stick. And somewhere, in acrid smoke in dimensions beyond, he was whispering to her. Seductive, handsome, like oil. Carlos Cantos was dead, so it was said. But he wanted freedome all the same. 


The Devil Stick could smite demons, ghosts, spirits. And it could smite smoke too... living smoke, like Juan. This, Carlos Cantos whispered to La Puma. 


"What, you think you can hit me?" laughed Juan as he ascended past the rooftops. "I have spent my whole life dodging demons. A little cat girl was never going to be a problem! Hahahahaha!"

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