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Picking up the Pieces--IC, Open

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When he was just a child, it never occurred to Rico to think about life on other planets or dimensions. After all, life was hard enough on his own, what with foster parents, crappy school life, and the gang he was a part of. The idea of extra-terrestrial life had been the furthest thing from his mind, right up there with worrying about World Peace. Thing changed when he stumbled into the power of his heritage, however. Oh, how did things change.

Southside had been torn apart by the Invasion he never would have thought about as a child. While other heroes had taken care of that tremendous threat, Epic had done what he could to keep order through out the city, defending and protecting, but not pressing the attack or his advantage, but instead going to where more help was needed. Now that it was all over, Freedom City had some much needed time to lick its wounds...and that was where EPIC came in. Untold damage had ravaged the city, and Southside was no exception. Many of its inhabitants, poor and miserable, were usually forgotten by the City's elite, being so steeped in crime...but not by the Heroes. It was their jobs to stop crime, to clean up streets like these, and now was the perfect time to immortalize that idea...only this time with a very literal sense of 'cleaning up'.

Epic gave a small grunt as he began to lift the large wall that had collapsed onto the street. Many buildings had crumbled, and the roads were so wrecked that it was hard to get the proper equipment to clear out the rubble and debris. Fortunately for those in dire need of rescue, however, those with the power to help were doing just that. He gave another small grunt, and then hefted several tons of concrete and steel above his head. He stood there, looking almost iconic as the EMS workers quickly rushed past him, sifting through the smaller bits to find possible survivors. It was grim work, in its own way, but every man, woman, and child that they found was one more that would walk away from this fight, and prove that humanity was strong enough to endure whatever it faced.

He took to the air, his golden cape fluttering as he lifted the heavy burden into the sky. Small bits fell away as he made his way above the pile of rubble he had been compiling as he cleared the way. He had already moved countless tonnage, and would no doubt move much more before the day was over with...and well into the night, provided the EMS were prepared to work as long as he was. It was a bit heart wrenching for him, honestly--as a child, streets like these had been his hang-out spots, his only real home. It wasn't so hard to imagine himself in this same situation--waiting in the dark, buried under rubble, and just waiting to be saved. Thoughts that that pressed him onward as he flung the heavy wall onto the pile, watching it crumble with a small amount of satisfaction. He looked down at the disaster below, some two hundred feet into the air, and scanned the area carefully.

"You know, now would be a great time to surprise me with some X-Ray vision." He said, apparently talking to himself.

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Down below, an angel stepped from nowhere in a blaze of light. Freedom Angel, recovered from the injuries he'd sustained in the invasion, was now a very busy man indeed. Putting aside his sword, he moved to help dig for the wounded, his keen senses making him a natural bloodhound to the fallen. So many were dead, but a few were left that were within his capacity to help, those poor souls suffering from dehydration along with their injuries. He didn't stop to greet the superhero overhead, not when there was work to be done.

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Less talk, more work. was Asa's only response, resonating in Epic's head like pleasant chimes. Epic wasn't entirely sure if Asa spoke in English so much as he just spoke in raw thought. Sometimes the magical device said things he didn't entirely understand, despite hearing him clearly. Of course, the sheer fact that he could hear him alone was miraculous...though it left many thinking that he was crazy, especially when he -wasn't- in costume. After all, a cape wearing, spandex sporting crusader against crime could afford to be a little loopy now and again. It another thing entirely for a normal-looking joe to be having an argument with himself.

The sudden flash of light below caused Epic to clench his fists in a flinch, ready to spring into action if some fiend was despicable enough to take advantage of the situation, but then was pleased to see that it was not some villain, but a fellow hero. Epic was relatively new to the city, so he didn't know too many by name--he had only been seen in a public a few times, and had managed to be labeled 'Epic' thanks to an internet Meme of two valley girls gushing about him, which the media picked up on immediately. 'He was, like, Soooo Epic! And hot! And EPIC!' the two had said, using the internet slang to the point that the Media had simply ran with the name. Epic didn't mind...as a matter of fact, he rather liked the name, and the stylized 'e' on his chest suggested as much. But whoever it was down there, they certainly seemed to know where they were going.

You should give him a hand, Epic. Asa suggested, reading the young superhero's mind. Epic nodded, swooping down to hove somewhat in front of Freedom Angel, reaching down to start flinging tons of debris to the side, to help the other-worldly looking man get to where Epic was sure he was going. "I'm just digging blindly here--if you can see or hear any survivors, just point me in the right direction." He said easily, his voice carrying no strain from the work.

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The destruction caused was pretty horrifying to Jyad, who had already seen enough of it back on his planet. But thankfully, here hope still endured, other heroes were assisting with fixing the town, Jyad being one of them. He would normally be at his work place helping there, but the situation at Southside was much, much worse. With permission, Jyad went out into the streets to clean up the city, in a new costume that he recieved from his workers. It was brown cloth that covered his entire body, expect his hands, feet, and the lower half of his face.

Looking onto the wrecked area, Tank started by lifting the debris that piled where buildings once were. The parasite within him made lifting huge amounts of concrete and steel little trouble. As he checked for a safe location to put away the debris, he had noticed two other people, one who had a cape that flew around, and another that was an odd sight to the Elderri. This one had wings, beautiful, giant, white wings that made him/her/it stand out from the rest.

Getting back to the current situation, Tank decided to crush the steel wall he had into pieces, tearing it into smaller chunks until they were in bite sized pieces. He found out though that it was an impractical method, as many chunks scattered around the area. "How do you get rid of this metal?" he thought, picking up a piece that he tore off. Not sure what he was thinking, he plopped it into his mouth, trying to digest it. As it turned out, it would work, but it took awhile and the steel did not digest easily, so Tank decided to stick to lifting and moving it away.

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Epic had a pretty sizable pile of rubble and debris he was working on, which was chock full of steel, concrete, and whatever else he managed to find. If he heard Tank's internal dialogue, he would have pointed to it, but as it was, the Troll would just have to enjoy some steel snacks. The wall he removed helped to clear the way further into the collapsed building, which construction workers had already done a good deal of trying to help stabilize. It creaked and groaned a little, but the gained ground was more than worth it as two survivors gasped, partially under debris as they shielded their eyes from the sudden burst of sunlight--a woman, and a young boy, from the looks of it.

Meanwhile, Epic was helping plow through the rubble that Freedom Angel had been attracted to, and true to his senses they soon found a Hummer, of all things, buried under concrete and steel. The roof was smashed in deeply, nearly flat with the seats, but soft moans could be heard from inside the SUV. Epic landed to the side of the vehicle and swung his right hand wipe, sweeping the debris aside like it was made of cardboard (away from the EMS workers, of course), before he jumped (flew) up and landed softly on the roof of the Hummer, smashed in as it was. His fingers easily dug into the metal, and he looked about to rip it up when he sudden stopped.

Hold up there, Hero. You don't know how badly hurt they might be, and just ripping this roof off might provoke further injury. That sword looks awfully sharp though, doesn't it?

He looked at Freedom's Sword, and nodded toward it. "Can that cut through this metal? I can rip it apart, but a controlled incision is probably best."

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Freedom Angel concentrated for a moment, the blade in his hand sharpening to an edge almost painful to look at, and then stabbed downwards. The divinely empowered sword cut through steel and rock like butter, peeling aside the Hummer as easily as it might have opened up a grape. At the sight of the badly injured people inside, the sword vanished in an instant, and the angel's hands were upon the battered family inside. An angelic light suffused his hands, spreading into the wounded, knitting their wounds and healing their bodies. The wounds didn't heal up all the way, but the family inside the car, blinking back a daze against the sunlight overhead, were able to leave the car under their own power.

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As he made his way into the collapsed building, Tank was two humans as survivors. Their eyes blinded by the sunlight that they had not seen for some time. Willingly, Tank heaved up the steel debris that kept the two trapped. The Elderri said, "Are you okay?" as he looked towards the medical area nearby, gesturing the two survivors to head there.

Tank took this time to think about what he had known about humans. In comparison to an Elderri, humans seemed thicker in size, yet smaller. Their skin was usually pale or brown, a colour that other humans seemed to despise. Tank could not understand why, what was the difference? When compared to Tank, humans were weak and fragile, only able to support themselves unless they worked together with a task. Even if they seemed weak, there was something in humans that Tank envied. Cunning? Will? Guile? He couldn't understand it's meaning. Still, Tank wanted to help these people, to prevent another disaster like Tank's homeworld, and to understand these species more.

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