Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Avenger Assembled

White Saturday (IC)

Recommended Posts

It was the day after Black Friday, and everyone in Freedom City was exhausted. Everyone who was a smart shopper, anyway, and Joan Collier certainly was a smart shopper. Normally she found it too stereotypical to do a lot of shopping for the family herself, especially given Charlie's skill at coupon-fu, but the truth of the matter was that he lacked a certain iron will that was necessary for serious shopping on Black Friday. You had to be willing to mark your territory and guard it by whatever means necessary, and that was something Joan Collier was certainly willing to do when it came to shopping for her family. She'd picked up a track and field set for Lois and a new set of running shoes, along with the Playstation 3 games Lois had actually asked for (and hadn't _that_ taken some manuevering!), and gotten Charlie the collected Martin Scorsese DVDs he'd been asking for. All in all, it had been a very successful day, though it had left her very tired.

She was sitting at her desk typing away at a story about Young Freedom and other heroic teen teams when she heard her daughter call her name. "Mom! Come quick!" Joan was on her feet in an instant, recognizing the urgency in her daughter's voice, and was soon in the living room to see the leering face on network television. "Takashi!" she spit, recognizing an old nemesis from her days in Japan. "Looks like...that's Liberty Park, so that's the GBN building he's in! Honey," she said on instinct, "go into your room."

"But Mooo,-"

"GO!" Lois retreated, knowing better to argue with her mother when her blood was up, and Joan reached down, turning up the volume as Doc Otaku went back into his rant.

"...silly gaijin and your silly notions of morality!" said Otaku, a leer on his face as he stared directly into the camera attached to whatever piece of super-science he was using to hijack the CBS station, and then probably all of Freedom City's channels through that. Freedom City's TV stations. His face was close enough to the camera that Joan could make out the spray of blackheads across his cheeks. "I've done enough to show you how your cops are fat, stupid Zenigatas and your superheroes musclebound freaks straight from the pages of Harmony Gold! So now, I think it's time to show you how stupid your blue-nosed censors are and your stupid notions of morality." He grinned. "So I've decided to hijack the airwaves and give you a little taste of Nihon!" He leaned back, the camera pulling back as well, and Joan briefly went blind and deaf from sheer unadulterated rage as she saw three black-clad, shapely figures surrounding Otaku worshipfully, tentacles wrapped sinously around him in multiple caresses, three recast versions of her own costume and arms smeared over what were obviously new versions of his Angel Androids. When she could hear and see again, she heard him saying, "...that's right, folks, with the help of my lovely friends here, I've got the whole run of "Beautiful American Tentacle Woman Heroine", even the second season that was too hot even for Japanese TV!" He snickered, and it was a sound that made her feel like she was standing under a leaking septic tank. "And I'm going to make sure everyone in Freedom City gets a chance to see the whole thing! Hahahah!" The androids laughed with him, girlish voices modded to sound oddly like Joan's herself in costume. "I've tied up the Freedom League with a little thing I like to call Dragonball BombZ, so don't count on anyone stopping this signal! Hope you've all stocked up on pocky!"

And suddenly Otaku had disappeared, and the nightmarish strains of a horrible J-Pop tune Joan thought she'd forgotten assaulted her ears as a terribly twisted cartoon version of herself appeared on screen, dancing before she...Fusion grabbed the television with one tentacle and smashed it through the wall, the explosion of the rupturing parts loud enough inside to have Lois and Charlie both in the room, staring at their costumed mother and wife in shock. "Honey, what's-" Fusion wasn't listening, not really, instead she was boiling to the window, jerking it open with outstretched tentacles as she prepared to launch herself out the window.

"I'm going to the GBN building. I'll be back later." _I'm going to kill the son of a bitch._ And with that, she vanished, rocketing herself out the window as tentacles unfurled into sails, her body rippling into near-invisibility as she turned on her camouflage cells. Inside the house, Charlie Smith hugged his daughter before heading for his wife's desk. He'd only seen her that angry a few times before, and it was hard not to be a little afraid as he dug through her cards before he found a phone number. Gabriel. I guess that'll work... And with that, he dialed.

Share this post


Link to post

Carson had been flipping through the channels, trying to see if someone had some bloody decent football (what the Yanks called "soccer") on. He'd just found an actual live game going on (these local teams were actually pretty good), when some punk came on the screen.

By the time Doc Otaku was done speaking, Gabriel's expression had gone blank. The air positively *thrummed* with his barely contained anger.

"The bloody nerve of this punk kid! Pumping this filth over the airways! And using a bomb threat to distract the Freedom League, no less! I'll give him the worst headache and indigestion he's ever had."

His anger slowed him a bit, as he donned his costume a bit slower than normal. He'd just pulled on his gloves, lacking only his mask and his distinctive hooded coat, when his phone rang. Seeing that he didn't recognize the number, he picked it up and spoke in his "neutral American accent".

"Hello. May I ask who is calling, for whom they are calling, and for what purpose?"

Share this post


Link to post

"Uh, hello?" The man on the other end harrumphed and said, "This is, uh, a friend of Fusion, the superheroine. I have that you're a contact of hers, right? Well, I'm a friend of hers, and...did you see the broadcast? Is it still going on? Damn. Listen, uh, she just left here and she looked really, really angry. She can have, aheh, kind of a temper sometimes, and she really hates that Solo Takashi guy even on good days. If you could maybe get out to that station, see if you can find her, or maybe just stop Takashi, you could keep her from making a really big mistake. And maybe stop that guy before...before he has a chance to show that terrible show."

Share this post


Link to post

Gabriel's face blinked for a moment in confusion, before a degree of understanding kicked in. But as the man spoke, something like worry crossed his features. The way this man was talking, he feared Fusion might try something that she would regret later on.

"You called the right number. My name is Gabriel. I was headed to the station anyways to stop him. I'll make sure she doesn't make any mistake she'll regret. And I'll do my level best to stop the broadcast ASAP. I promise you. I will do my best."

With that, he hung up the phone and rushed about finishing putting his costume on. Within moments, he was ready to go.

"Please Lord, don't let me be too late..." he prayed as he opened his balcony window just enough to fly out of his apartment and into the sky at incredible speeds.

A low boom echoed as he performed an arcing path over the city, balancing speed and not blowing out every window on his path. One or two might get cracked, though.

As he nears the GBN building, he slows, finally hovering about 80 feet up, and about 300 feet away. He takes the time to try to see any external defenses the young pervert might have put in place...

Share this post


Link to post

Across town, within a large chamber of a stately manor, Travis Hunter sat in a stiff backed chair and steepled is fingers in displeasure as he watched the flat panel screen across from him, his neatly trimmed salt and pepper goatee framing a thin grimace. "Disgraceful."

A much younger figure stepped in beside him, setting down a tea tray. Trevor Hunter took a moment to observe the jarring combination of over processed music and flashing lights before replying, "It is Otaku."

"Hmph. Time was even the villains had a sense of dignity to them. 'Gaijin'. If Hank and his brother had lived to see this..." Travis' eves narrowed, a hint of anger flickering over his stoic demeanor. "Best get going."

Trevor raised one eyebrow slightly. "Don't think the Freedom League can handle themselves?" Bomb threat or not, it was difficult to tie a super speedster and the living embodiment of an entire city up for long.

"Poor girl has enough trouble keeping her team in order," his grandfather appraised with a slight shake of his head, turning off the television with his remote. "Go."

With a curt nod, the younger man was off in a dead sprint toward a nearby staircase, shoulders squaring as a hard look set in glossy black and crimson eyes.

Share this post


Link to post

It was going to be the perfect afternoon for Stesha. Curled up on the couch in her apartment, watching the Snoopy Christmas Marathon on ABC Family, with Derrick close by and a fresh box of Rice Krispie Treats cereal. Sure, maybe she'd been supposed to get married today, but she wasn't going to let that get her down. A New Year's wedding was just as good as a Thanksgiving wedding, even if she was going to be letting out her dress until it cried for mercy. And there was something to be said for a lazy afternoon after two days of huge meals at her folks' house. And she did mean huge. She'd eaten every damn thing in sight, or so it had felt. At this rate, she was going to have to trade in her dress for a white catering tent with flower embroidery. But that was a worry for some other day!

She was just getting into the second hour of Peanuts when suddenly, her cozy afternoon was rudely interrupted! "Otaku?" she said aloud, peering at the screen. "Ah, crud, not again. You ruined my convention, you're not going to get away with spoiling my lazy weekend!" Hastily she donned her costume and left a note for Derrick, then teleported herself to the scene of the crime!

Share this post


Link to post

Outside the Global Broadcasting Network building, the arriving heroes were assaulted by the sight and sound of one of the more horrible monsters any of them had yet encountered. It was a giant robot a good twenty feet tall, cast in the shape of a woman, no, a girl of perhaps fifteen or sixteen, wearing a bizarrely cut French maid costume, right down to little white hat perched on her head far above the ground. Marring her humanoid appearance was the gigantic machine guns positioned over her chest, fixed directly to her solid steel body. "I am the guardian of Otaku-san!" she chirruped in a high-pitched, breathy voice loud enough to shake the glass all around them. She wasn't talking to the heroes, though; she fired another sternum-level bombardment at a burning police car nearby, the two officers who had been inside visible taking cover behind a large truck. "No one will lay hands on his august personage before the show is over! NO ONE!"

Share this post


Link to post

The Night Cycle slid to a silent halt just behind a barricade of police cars as the absurd automaton declared its intent. The motorcycle's black clad rider observed the situation through red lenses and narrowed eyes for a moment before flipping open a small, concealed panel on the vehicle's handle bars and thumbing the revealed button. The front fender slid apart with a slight hiss as a cylinder extended slightly before quietly launching a nondescript sphere in a lazy arc to land at the base of the GBN building's transmitting array. "The show's over," Midnight informed the robot in a low, grating rumble in the pause before an explosion ripped through the metal girders and sent the entire tower topping over to crash into the massive foe with a screech of twisting metal and a resounding impact.

Share this post


Link to post

Just as Fusion arrived at the battle, the GBN tower creaked loudly before falling over in the wake of a small but powerful explosion, the story-high assemblage of girders landing right on that giant, disgusting robot! As the concealed octopus champion watched, the robot staggered beneath the massive impact. Joan was hero enough that she breathed only a small sigh of relief at the sight: the destruction of the tower meant Otaku's transmissions had stopped, but that didn't help the heroes dealing with the giant robot! The Mecha Maid staggered against the impact, bracing the mass of metal up with its robotic hands while trying to disentangle its machine-gun array from where it had gotten caught in the enfolding steel mesh. "OOOOH! WHEN I GET OUT OF THIS, I'M GONNA BE REAL MAD!" the robot shouted, something in its mechanical voice making clear that this was a pre-programmed comeback.

Share this post


Link to post

Gabriel saw Midnight arrive on his motorbike, though he didn't immediately recognize the younger hero. However, he did recognize an opening when he saw one. He quickly flew over to the robot, pausing for a split second once he was right next to it. Gathering sound around his hands for a moment, he slams his hands into the giant robot's side, sending supercharged subsonic waves through it's body, hopefully wreaking havoc on its armor plating, making it easier for his fellows to finish taking it down.

"You won't be mad, you'll be scrap!"

He shifted his head to gaze out at Midnight, and any other heroes visible to him.

"Quick! Hit it now, it should be vulnerable!"

Share this post


Link to post

A metallic shriek rose from the rapidly vibrating robot as Gabriel's sonic blow sent huge chunks of its armor plating tumbling off, Mecha-Maid's vulnerable inner workings now clear to everyone as gears and circuits whirred and hissed! As Gabriel finished shouting his battle strategy to the crowd, he realized that the robot was looking right at him: her eyes red and glowing now that her face plate had fallen off. "I'LL SHOW YOU BIG!" it shrieked, its voice synthesizer fried to near incomprehensibility by the damage it had taken. Suddenly those red, glowing eyes erupted from the robot's head, transforming into round flying missiles as they rocketed towards Carson! They both missed him, burying themselves in the concrete on either side, but a second later they exploded with such sheer force that they sent him hurling into the air! He landed badly, hearing things crack as he did so, and tasted blood in his mouth as his vision blurred.

Share this post


Link to post

Stesha arrived on the scene just in time to see Gabriel being thrown across the field of battle by a giant robot maid! With a soft cry, she ran to him, kneeling down next to him and opening one of her pouches. "Here," she murmured, stuffing a ball of what seemed to be leaves and maple sap into his mouth. "Eat this, it will help." She patted his hair reassuringly and looked around at the situation, hoping that somebody was going to stop the robot before anything else fell over or got blown up.

Share this post


Link to post

Invisible as she arrived, Fusion hesitated a few moments as she saw the giant robot about to fall. _Now's my chance to..._ She saw Gabriel go down from the robot's bombardment, though, and changed her tune. _There are heroes down there who need my help. I can...I can get Takashi later._ She swung down from the skyscraper nearby, visible as a black, tentacled shape heading into the robot's open eye sockets. She headed straight for the giant robot's inner workings, tuning out the foul syllables in Japanese it chortled about being fondled by tentacles as she slid her way to its power core. Wrapping tentacles around the radioactive heart of the beast, she wrenched, producing an abruptly-stifled shriek from the Mecha-Maid, the giant robot suddenly freezing stock-still as the tentacled titan ripped out its power core. She appeared out the mouth a moment later, swinging down to land at the other heroes' side. "Takashi's designs always have a weak point," she said shortly, her voice an otherwordly hiss, "You just have to know how to get them. Hello, Gabriel, Fleur. You must be Midnight." She'd heard of the Golden Age hero, of course, but never actually seen the old veteran in person.

Share this post


Link to post

When the missiles exploded, Gabriel's expression could best be summed up as "dumb shock". When he hit the ground, rolling across the broken asphalt, it was instead "incredible pain". It felt like half his ribs broke, and he was sure at least one shoulder was out of socket. And man, did his right leg hurt!

He lay there, contemplating what it was about being a hero that kept leading to him being sprawled out on the ground, rather horribly hurt. It just didn't seem fair...

"Bloody tin can..." he wheezed out, trying to move, and failing.

He was about to try again when Fleur appeared.

"Oh, Fleur, thank good-"

And then he had a ball of the weirdest stuff in his mouth. With a grimace, he bit down, chewed, and swallowed it. It took several moments, but then he started to feel much better. In fact, it was like he could feel his bones and muscles knitting themselves together. In the space of perhaps 20 seconds, he went from "heavily injured" to "perfectly fine". Gabriel brought himself to a sitting position once the work seemed finished, shooting Fleur a grateful smile.

"Thanks, Fleur. Not the best tasting medicine, but I can't argue with the results."

He slowly stood to his feet, nodding to Fusion as she approached.

"Hello Fusion. Thanks for finishing off the bloody thrice-damned robot. Good to know my efforts bore fruit."

He looked at the small group.

"So. I presume we want to head inside? It seems possible he has hostages, the regular crew of the station. We've stopped the primary broadcast, but we likely don't want to give him time to improvise..."

Share this post


Link to post

Smoothly dismounting from the Night Cycle, Midnight strode purposefully to the impromptu gathering around the fallen priestly hero, offering the florakinetic attending the Gabriel a curt but respectful nod. "Miss de Joie," the vigilante's voice rumbled in a gravelly baritone through his mask. He turned his attention the the tentacled woman who had so deftly disabled the weakened robot. Even without the robed man calling her by name, it would have been difficult to mistake the distinctive silhouette of the West Coast heroine known as Fusion. Eyes narrowing slightly behind his red lenses, Midnight regarded her in an appraising manned. "First name basis? Met in Japan," he surmised.

Share this post


Link to post

"Well, if it tastes bad," Fleur told Gabriel teasingly, "maybe you'll stop making me patch you up quite so often." She gave him a motherly pat on the shoulder, then pushed on her knees to stand herself up again as the impromptu team regrouped. "Hello, Midnight," she greeted the black-clad youth, "it's nice to see you again. Fusion, good to see you as well. Do we have any idea what exactly we might be up against inside that studio?" she asked the group at large. "I've faced Otaku's minions before, but this seems like a somewhat different proposition. He's obviously expecting us."

Share this post


Link to post

"He's expecting me," said Fusion with a frown, her tentacles writhing with an anger she was doing her best not to show. "Takashi and I have fought before. He's a disgusting little pervert who ought to be locked up for what he does to kids who watch his antics, much less the stupid crimes he pulls off." Unconsciously, one tentacle crushed a steel piece of rebar she'd been playing with. "I suggest we work by stealth. Give him something big and shiny to look at, and the rest of us can get in the back and deal with him."

Share this post


Link to post

"I can provide a distraction!" Stesha volunteered immediately. "I still have two of his robots knocking around from last time I faced off with him. I bet he would be very interested if they showed up again, and I've got a few other tricks up my sleeve as well." She looked around at the rest of the group. Midnight was obviously built for stealth, but the tentacled heroine and the almost-angel didn't inspire quite as much confidence. "Midnight, if you can sneak into the building with one of my plants, I can teleport the others along to you, so you won't all have to sneak in."

Share this post


Link to post

Gabriel smirked at Stesha's comment about getting hurt.

"Well, when you folks stop needing me to swoop in and help save the day, I'm sure I'll go longer without injury."

He turned to regard Midnight for a moment, before giving a simple nod of greeting.

"Nice to meet you, Midnight. Call me Gabriel. Now..."

He listened as Fusion and Fleur discussed strategy.

"He may be a pervert, but he's also obviously very intelligent. And resourceful. We have to be careful...

Fleur, maybe I could go in with you, provide some backup? Then Fusion and Midnight could slip in the back. I'm not that big, but I am fairly noticeable. And pretty loud.

Or, I could wait with Fusion and get plant-aported. Either way works, really. So long as we bring his little impromptu show to a full halt, and rescue any hostages in there, we should be fine."

He gave a slightly worried glance to Fusion, watching her casually destroy that piece of rebar. The man on the phone had said she was angry. Perhaps Gabriel had underestimated that anger...

Share this post


Link to post

"All right, we'll..." Fusion looked around, tentacles waving, then gave a short laugh. "Guess Midnight's answered that question. You two sort things out, I'll be going around the back. His robots are powerful, get help if you haven't fought them before. Easiest thing to do is hit them as a team. If you can teleport in _after_ he sees you, that's even better: that'll get him looking." She whipped out a tentacle and snatched the flower from Fleur, her gesture quick despite all the power behind it. "Thanksssss...." And with that she vanished herself, her skin shifting in color and tone to match the landscape behind her, a quickly invisible blur as she whipped up a long tentacle and headed around to the other side of the building, landing quickly by a rear loading dock. It was quiet inside; too quiet. What was going on?

Share this post


Link to post

By the time Fleur and Gabriel had turned their attention from Fusion to Midnight, the black clad hero was nowhere to be found, having heard enough and slipped away in the shadows. The proposed feint was tactically sound, a wise use of their respective abilities, but the young vigilante was unwilling to stand around discussing it ad nauseum. Whether or not the otherworldly air Fusion put forth was genuine or not, he recognized all too human emotions in her reaction. She was talking the entire situation personally and Otaku could be counted upon to provike her further given the chance. Better to slip in while the obnoxious roboticist was distracted and resolve the situation himself, if possible. Grappling up a few stories, he moved silently along a ledge, looking for a window through which to enter inconspicuously.

Share this post


Link to post

"She's sneakier than she looks," Fleur murmured to Gabriel. "All right then, distraction time." She clapped her hands, then rubbed them together, wishing she'd brought her mittens along on this trip. "Brr. Stay close to me, and if you think of something distracting, go for it." Throwing out her hands in the direction of the imprisoned and deactivated mega-robot, she sent enormous vines snaking across the dead grass, sinuous as snakes. They wrapped around maid and tower, pulling the tower away and dragging it into the grass a short distance off.

Next to the robot itself, a gigantic yellow daisy, at least the size of a baseball diamond, grew up from the ground and unfurled sail-like petals that waved in the breeze. When the flower had assumed its full height and breadth, it tipped over, as though overcome by its own weight, and landed face-down to cover the robot. A cloud of pollen rose up, and when it cleared, the robot had vanished! The daisy slowly righted itself, its stem decreasing in height till the flower was face up and flat to the earth. Improbably, as though any of this had been probable, a cup like that on a buttercup rose from the center of the flower, and when it opened, there were two entirely different robots: Doc Otaku's missing Angel Androids.

Nibbing on her lower lip in concentration, Stesha picked up control of the vines again, and wrapped one around the upper chest and under the armpits of each robot. Wiggling her fingers and humming a Christmas song, she began moving the robots in a herky-jerky dance, their limbs flopping and heads lolling to the beat. "If this doesn't get him watching, nothing will..."

Share this post


Link to post

Gabriel has to check again when he notices Midnight is gone. He shakes his head at the shadow-clad hero's initiative.

'Hope he can still work with the plan...'

He gives Fusion a small wave as she leaves.

"Good luck, and go with God."

He quirks an eyebrow as Fleur starts putting on a powerful performance of petals and vines. As she begins to rearrange the field, a huge smile comes across his face. Fleur will hear his voice whispering in her ear where no one else can hear him.

"Play along with what I'm about to do, and when I'm done, I'll apologize to both of you ladies. But I think this show needs a little more to make it a real Broadway hit."

Suddenly, he stands and flies over, though not nearly as fast as Fleur knows he can be. Just as suddenly, the Androids held up by her vines seemingly begin to speak!

"Oh no! Just as we thought we'd break free from this horrid woman's clutches, another of these blasted American "heroes" shows up!"

"These gaijin will soon bow before the awe-inspiring presence of our master!"

"I say thee nay! For we are not the gaijin here! It is Doctor Otaku himself, coming here uninvited from his homeland, to a place not of his birth, trying to impose his warped views of the world on us. Whatever criticism he tries to lay on us, is multiplied tenfold, and heaped back upon him! Now, I shall strike you down! Do not think your fair exteriors can fool me; I know his shoddy robotic creations when I see them!"

"Do not say such things about our wonderful Master!"

"We shall strike you down, you mono-colored Gaijin!"

With that, Gabriel started to "attack" the two puppet androids. Instead of blasting them with bursts of sound, he seemed to resort to fisticuffs.

"Fear not, Fleur de Joie! I shall keep these foul creations of a pathetic mind at bay! Just watch my back, and try not to let them gain the uper hand!"

If Fleur didn't know any better, she'd say Gabriel was on the verge of laughing, at least for a moment. Then, it was gone, and he seemed to be all bluster and flourish.

Share this post


Link to post

Around the back, Fusion and Midnight both were able to peer into windows and figure out what was going on inside, or at the very least make some informed guesses. Though the slumped bodies in the corner office and inside the loading office, respectively, looked for a second like a scene from a murderous charnel house, a closer look revealed that the people inside were still breathing, just mysteriously unconscious. Joan muttered a curse as she watched invisibly, thinking about the people inside and all the toxic fumes they were no doubt absorbing, speculating with disgust about what Otaku might do with lots of unconscious people. But on closer inspection, she (and Midnight above) noted something decidedly odd about the unconscious people inside. "Wait, that longshoreman obviously didn't drop that box," Fusion muttered to herself, "and that clerk should have fallen out of that desk, not just laid down next to it. It's as if they're asleep...or as if they _chose_ to lay down..."

Outside, Gabriel and Fleur's display (which would later be one of the most popular Freedom City Herotube videos of the week by a wide margin) soon got the attention of Doc Otaku, who had rapidly gone from tormentor to tormented. "You...you perverts!" a voice suddenly screamed out from the building's loudspeakers as Otaku hastily reordered its outdoor broadcasting systems, usually used so people could watch GBN shows even without being near a TV. "First you stop my broadcast, then you mutilate my beautiful robot babes!" He was looking disheveled as he shouted into the microphone, a tentacle from an off-camera robot patting him comfortingly on the shoulder. "Well, I'll show you! My Fusion androids are on their way to pummel you right now, and after that I'll make robot friends that look just like you!"

Share this post


Link to post

Crouched against the side of the window, Midnight peered in at the sleeping GBN employees. The odd positioning of the slumbering civilians striking him immediately, he retrieved a rectangular device from his belt and proceeded to run a full spectrum scan of the vicinity. As he suspected, strange signals in the same wavelengths as human synaptic patterns were bathing the entire building. Judging by their nature, they were of artificial origin, and emanating from the side of the building facing the park. Slipping the scanner away, he gravely activated the mental shielding built into his mask for such an occasion, a faint hum registering. Flexing his fingers and toes in a specific manner, he extended short barbs from the palms of his gloves and the soles of his boots, using them to crawl swiftly along the wall in that direction.

Share this post


Link to post
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  

×