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Mangled Metal (IC)

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GM ONLY

June 8th, 2011

A Wednesday morning like any other in the West End. The wind was blowing and the birds were chirping. The air was cool ... and filled with the sound of the screaming steam engines of six sixteen-foot-tall-mechanical-monsters???

The robots were there ever since the first light had lit the skies that morning. No one was sure how they'd gotten there, but one thing was sure, they were not friendly. They had come online at dawn to begin wrecking the city streets. Two were outfitted with an axe and a large cannon. Two were outfitted with a pair of steam-powered, sharpened fists. The last two were outfitted with flamethrowers and large rapidly spinning saw blades.

The scene in the streets was horrific. Cars were being thrown, houses were being hit by artillery shells or axes, and one robot even tore an entire apartment building from it's foundations to lift it above it's head and throw.

Things seemed hopeless for the citizens of Freedom City's West End...

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Fulcrum hovered most of the morning near the river and watched the machines from on high. Giant robots she enjoyed smashing, and these things definitely looked like trouble. Part of her hoped that AEGIS agents and ArcheTeche scientists would secure them before activation. Of course another part of her wanted to beat up giant robots. The super-powered kid part mostly.

Unfortunately this day, a quiet containment wasn't in the cards. Fulcrum fiddled with her phone as the machines came online. The text to her Mom would have to wait. Putting a hand to her ear, she spoke loudly over the sounds of destruction. "Vince! The robots are hot! Repeat. The robots are hot. I'm engaging. Scramble the team."

As she popped her knuckles, a thought occurred to her, and she added, "Thrude especially. She'd enjoy this one."

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Jin had felt the robots from halfway across town. He didn't know very much about being a super hero just yet, but one thing he did know: When six massive lumps of metal suddenly pop onto the grid without warning in Freedom City, there was likely to be trouble. He also knew that when six massive lumps of metal were causing trouble, it was the type of thing that he specifically should look into.

Clad in his brand new liquid metal coating suit from the neck down, and his steel plate of a face mask, Ferros cruised toward the scene from the east on his large metal disc designed to look like a Yin-Yang.

"Vince! The robots are hot! Repeat. The robots are hot. I'm engaging. Scramble the team."

As she popped her knuckles, a thought occurred to her, and she added, "Thrude especially. She'd enjoy this one."

Pulling up next to Fulcrum he asked, "Hey, now, what team would that be, exactly?" But before she could respond, he seemed to notice exactly how large she was, "Woh, guess you don't look bigger at a distance, you know? You really are that tall."

Their pleasant conversation was further interrupted when two of the robots lifted an apartment building right off of it's foundations and prepared to throw it!

"Well, hey, we should probably go do something about that, you know?" Ferros asked, having to cut their conversation a little short. He prepared to dive toward the robots, and save Freedom City for the first time!

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Wisp appeared in the air, flipping in the air before landing softly on the roof of an apartment building. Her "jog" around the city, bringing her by the brownstone her friend Grimalkin lived in. The thought of another poker night cross her mind as she moved along rooftops, flipping the short gaps making up small one-car driveways. She stopped and looked up just in time to dodge a car axle being tossed by one of several giant robots rampaging a few blocks away.

When she noticed Fulcrum and somebody she wasn't familiar with in a steel-gray bodysuit on a flying yin-yang, she moved over. "Fulcrum, good to see you again," she called up. Nodding towards the robots she smirked and rolled her shoulders, "Beating the hell out of them won't be as fun as that last game of poker so new bet, lowest robot count buys the pie?"

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Fulcrum started a little at Ferros and nodded in greeting, "The Interceptors. Yes, let's knock these things out before they do any more damage. Introductions can wait."

She looked to dive onto the farthest pair of robots when a familiar voice echoed up to her. She smiled down, "Good to see you, Wisp. Looks like we'll need all the firepower we can get. You're on! They'll level the whole neighborhood if we don't move fast. I'll take the far set."

Shifting her power into her flight, Fulcrum climbed, looped and began diving for her appointed targets. Looked like she was picking up steam for a big hit!

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Having risen with Sol (whom she referred to as "My distant cousin"), Thrude was already bathed, fed, armored, and on patrol, making her second sweep of the city. She was standing on the rooftop of West End apartment block a little over a quarter of a mile away from the action when her ears picked up the squealing and crunching of metal-on-metal. She cupped one hand over her eye, shading it from the morning sunlight. Her single sky-blue eye combed the skyline, peering at the the street which peeked out from between the buildings. She was still adjusting to the loss of its mate, but her sight was still ten times the better of any mortal. And Doktor Archeville had taught her a new technique to compensate for her lost depth perception by rapidly changing focus from one target to the next.

Her eye narrowed at the giant figures tearing up the streets. She smiled grimly. Worthy opponents. My strength shall be tested this day.

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Wisp eyed the distances between her and the giant robots. Nodding to herself she called up her will and vanished in a burst of snowy and sanguine smoke. When she reappeared she was moving through a series of attacks on the robot's heads. Each blow from her fists, knees, or feet resulted in a reverberating clang while several of the blows sent spider-web cracks in the metal and horrible screeching noises from material.

Appearing back a few feet above where she started, she landed with a flip. "It's like rock 'em sock 'em robots only with more danger."

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GM ONLY

One of the massive robots with the open hands charged forward, attacking the girl that had so recently become an aggressor. As it ran, the earth shook, and it's steam powered boiler screamed it's aggression. It was a war cry of sorts, both terrible and awesome to behold. It reached out with it's iron grip, attempting to smash and grab the tiny teleporter. Black smoke poured from it's steam vents as it's hand crashed into the apartment below Wisps feet. She'd succeeded in making a diving dodge at the last second!

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The Daughter of Storms raised her fist into the air, as if trying to punch the sky. Her fingers popped open. Her enormous battle axe slid out of its harness on her back and flew up into her hand. When her fist clenched around it, the Nordic runes etched into the blades glowed and crackled with electricity. A bolt of lightning crashed down from the sky, breaking against her axe like a wave against the shore. The lightning crawled down her entire body, enveloping her like a cloak.

The clouds over the West End grew dark and obscured the summer sun. Thunder rumbled across the sky. Sheets of rain poured down onto the streets, whipped against the people and buildings alike by a rushing wind which seemed to change direction every few seconds. Suddenly people could see their own breath float in front of them, highlighted by the occasional flash of lightning.

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As the skies erupted with the magical torrents of rain, wind, and thunder, Ferros was buffeted fiercely on the platform he used to fly. Though, thanks to the control he had over the metal it was made of, he managed to keep his feet.

"Well, hey, that's certainly a good distraction." He said to Fulcrum as he raised a hand to where the eye-holes in his mask were, in an attempt to see through the torrential downpour. "But if we don't do something about those weapons, people are going to get hurt, you know? Badly too. Well, I'm going in. Let's see if I can't work a little magic here." Ferros leaned forward and took off toward the fight. He arced through the sky toward the two robots with axes and cannons. All the while he was buffeted back and forth by the wind.

When he finally got close enough to see them clearly, it turned out that they were readying those cannons to fire! He reached out with his left hand, focusing on the cannon, he began to tug at the metal he found there. He pushed, and pulled. He shaped, and he warped. He bent the metal's very nature to the image in his thread. Thankfully, it began to take effect. As soon as he saw the cannon begin to turn to slag he threw up his right arm and focused on the other robot's arm. Dividing his attention was difficult. But the metals the robots wore as armor were his to command, and he saw fit to create shapeless clumps of steel from their armor. The cannons the robots once threatened to shell Freedom City with would never again fire, but beneath his mask and armor, Ferros was panting and sweating with exertion. There had been a lot of steel in those arms, and it had taken all of his power to shape just them. He looked to the rest of the hulking machines, "Hoo, well, this might take a while. But at least we won't have to worry about any explosives going off in the suburbs, you know?"

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Fulcrum began to dive from just below the cloud ceiling. As she picked up speed, a great storm swept up around her, and rain began pelting against her skin like bullets. For a moment she was disoriented by the driving winds and fierce weather. A smile appeared on her face.

Thrude must be here!

Quickly relying more on her cosmic senses, the giantess continued her dive and leveled out at maximum speed for the conditions. One of the big beasts nearly smashed Wisp, and that simply would not do. The other heroes looked to be selecting targets, and she did the same. Flipping belly up on approach, Fulcrum ground her elbow along the bulky shoulder pauldron of the two-fisted metal monstrosity!

A hideous grating sound echoed into the gales as metal buckled and warped! Fulcrum vanished into the rain as quickly as she came!

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GM ONLY

As Fulcrum sped off into the skies, she felt a sudden faintness wash over her. It was almost as if she was feeling the onset of a cold or fever. Though it wasn't until her ascent peaked that she was able to see why.

The damage to the robot she'd struck was extensive. Her attack was enough to crush the metal of the robot's arm, rendering it unusable, even if it were still standing. Not only that, but her strike had torn away the protective metal plate that armored the chest portion of the robot's chassis. Even now, it laid on it's back, it's innards open to the world to see. The assembled heroes watched as the cavity in the robot's chest gave off a soft pale green pulsating light. Those in the air had a good enough angle to get eyes on the massive crystal ensconced in the robot's chest. It looked to be hooked up to a mess of circuits and other technological equipment. Likely it was providing power to the robot to supplement the energy gained by the steam engine on it's back.

The wires and attachments on the crystal seemed to have been scrapped, detached, or made otherwise non-functional by Fulcrum's strike as well. However, that only meant that the power of the crystal was free to flow outward and wash over Freedom City's West End. Though that power would likely be harmless to most, Fulcrum was definitely already feeling it's effects.


The two robots with axes spent no time mourning their fallen comrade. They were far too angry at Ferros for what he'd done to their precious cannons. The pair rushed him, but the driving winds, and Ferros' comparatively small size made him difficult to hit. Neither axe even came close to the metallic clad hero.

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Assuming a more defensive stance, Wisp shook the ringing from her ears after the near miss she had with the oversized metal monster. Gotta be more careful, she admonished herself, If it had grabbed me, it could probably have crushed me like a grape or thrown me over a mile...

As she started looking at her options, rain began to fall in a deluge. With her long hair plastered to her head, she called up the power from inside herself and vanished in a cloud of smoke quickly dissipated by the howling wind. Unfortunately, due to the poor visibility she misjudged her distance and reappeared swinging a good six inches away from her target, the ankle of one of the robots. Rather than stand around and risk being squashed, she quickly willed herself a few hundred feet away on a nearby flat-topped roof. Way to go genius...

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After Wisp went teleporting away again, the remaining arm-armored robot took stock of the situation. One opponent was engaged by the two destroyers. Two opponents were too far away. But the teleportation one was just within reach.

With a sound of grinding metal, screaming engines, steam hissing, and it's boiler pushing it at full tilt, the Kodiak bounded pell mell through the city, crashing through building after building to reach Wisp's position. Though it may have knocked into one too many obstacles. When it finally reached it's target, it's massive right hook went wide, as it was thrown off balance!

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Having altered the battlefield to suit her own sensibilities, Thrude's gaze poured over the combatants like the raindrops currently falling on their heads. There, she thought to herself as she spied one of the ironclad behemoths spewing flame with one hand while smashing a bladed chain into crumbling masonry with the other. A worthy opponent stands unengaged. She grinned like a hungry shark.

The goddess gave a half-conscious command to the flurry of wind kicking her braids up about her. Eager to do her bidding, they compressed into a cloud of mist underneath her, in the vague shape of a horse. Azure sparks crackled in the gaps where a horse would have eyes. Thrude rode her storm-borne steed across the sky, Vendrvapn held high above her shoulder.

The assembled heroes heard a roar like a passing freight train, felt a sudden shift in the wind, and saw the Nordic goddess crash into the giant automaton. The head of her massive warhammer glowed with an iridescent blue-white halo. It struck the robot squarely in the chest, flash-freezing metal until it was brittle as glass, a fraction of a second before the hammer blow shattered that glass. A bolt of lightning shot down from the sky as she swung, hitting the robot at the same time as her hammer. The lightning melted a beachball-sized hole through the robot's torso, all the way down to the ground, where it left a scorched crater in the pavement. Knocked off its feet by the impact, the colossal robot tumbled to the ground a few car lengths away. The earth under the entire city block shook.

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The metallic monstrosity was lifted from it's feet. It sailed slowly through the air, and landed with the sickening sound of metal twisting every way it wasn't supposed to. Just as the screeching of metal against concrete ended and the great steel beast slowed to a stop, two others were already on top of Thrude. The first stopped short, raised an arm, and took aim with what turned out to be a massive gout of napalm flame that would have made Robert Duval proud. Thrude was nearly incinerated in the blast. She managed to weather the heat, if only just. Unfortunately, the light and heat of the flame had distracted her from the advance of the other machine.

A mighty swipe of it's spinning chain saw and her world became darkness. After taking such a powerful hit from something designed to tear apart concrete and other machines of it's own size, it was a miracle that Thrude was still living. A wonder still that she suffered only from unconsciousness. It was now Thrude's turn to fly. The blow knocked her back a few hundred feet. Tumbling to the pavement on the streets of the West End, she lay motionless...

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Ferros witnessed the spectacular attack delivered by Thurde. It heartened him to see such a fierce combatant. He himself wished that he could feel the passion of a battle, sometimes, rather than having to control his emotions to keep his powers working. Beneath his mask, he smiled at the glorious display she put on.

Then he witnessed the napalm and the chain saw assault delivered by two more robots. No. He thought as he watched her go flying. He nearly rushed the robots right then, but he forced himself to remain calm. He looked at the robots near him, deciding that with their guns melted, they were less of a threat. He pressed against the driving rain and swooped down to engage the two robots that had assaulted Thrude.

"People are getting hurt. Houses are being destroyed. You don't even care." He told the to machines, lifting his hands as he had earlier. "You'd destroy this whole town if you were allowed to run rampant. That's why I won't let you." His outstretched open palms suddenly slammed shut. His fingers clenching into fists, and his muscles shaking.

There was a second of nothing. Then the first robot's chest cavity caved in. Followed by the helmet of the second robot. Their guns and weaponry quickly wrapped against their chassis. Before long, the entirety of the two robots were completely imploding crushed by some invisible force like a car in a giant compactor. After cracking their hulls like so much lobster, Ferros opened his hands, and the two robots dropped to the ground with a crash. "There should be only peace and tranquility. Upset that balance, and you will be crushed. If not by me, then by Freedom's other protectors."

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Daka. Damn. And in green death flavor.

The fever intensified as Fulcrum circled back to the neighborhood. Every fiber in her being protested against returning to the source of the pain. She began shivering, but instead of the chilling rain, the icy pulses of energy racing from her were the cause. Nonetheless she knew that the people of the West End and her team mates needed her. A tremendous gale and roars of wrenching metal reminded her of that fact.

Her teeth gritted she dived back into the storm. Keeping her eyes closed, she navigated using her cosmic senses, reassessing the battlefield. Another monstrosity lay wrecked and proved a good start. Suddenly, the wrecker herself landed in an undignified heap! Not only that but she wasn't moving! All thoughts of smashing another robot fled her mind, and Fulcrum dove hard for Thrude's limp form.

Unfortunately, seeing the goddess with her own eyes, she looked even worse. "Thrude!" cried Fulcrum as she knelt next to her new friend. Mona's limited first aid skills just weren't going to cut it. The goddess seemed alive but who knew how badly she was injured? "You'll be okay. Okay," she muttered.

Scooping her up, Fulcrum flew along as quickly but as gently as possible. As she flew, the feverish discomfort continued to grow, shifting to a burning pain coursing through her entire body. Willing herself to fly stably, she made a beeline for the Brownstone, or more specifically, the Underground's medical facilities.

She activated her comlink, "Vince! Clear a path to the medbay stat! Thrude's hurt."

Moments later Thrude rested on a retractable bed as the automated systems went to work.

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The blue streak that was Flucrum sped through the skies, endeavoring to seek medical attention for her friend. Meanwhile in the fighting, the two large robots with axes attached to the ends of the arms that were still left usable, ran to the aid of their own newly slagged comrades. One swung high, one swung low. But Ferros was nimble enough to spin sideways on his yin-yang flying platform and slip deftly between the blows.

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Wisp continued her hit and run tactics against one of the remaining metal monsters terrorizing the West End. And again, her fists were almost as effective as just throwing pebbles at the stupid things. Landing out of sight on the far side of a roof her knuckles throbbed painfully from the last attack. Cursing to herself, she felt incredibly useless in this fight.

Steeling her resolve, she moved up to the peak of the roof and watched for her opening, biding her time to strike.

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"Enough of this." Ferros spoke, though he wasn't even audible above the magical storm that raged. He stretched out a hand toward one of the two standing robots.

The robot saw that it was his next target. It's glowing eyes held no fear of death, though it did try to duck behind a building at the last moment, albeit unsuccessfully.

It's movement slowed just before it's legs snapped and were wrenched into the rest of the robot. It's remaining arms snapped and was pinned to its side, and finally it's head and chassis caved inward like so much Papier-mâché.

"Enough chaos. Enough destruction. This ends now."

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Fulcrum sighed in relief as VINCE's automated systems went to work on Thrude. An equal amount of relief came from her own pain downgrading to a dull ache. Nonetheless she knew with Thrude in good, well, "hands", she'd best be back to the fight. Too many citizens and buildings to stay out of the fray. Reluctantly, she squeezed Thrude's hand and turned to the door.

"Best wishes, Thrude," she called before flying out of the Brownstone.

She couldn't hear Ferros, but the same thoughts were running through her head. This battle needed to end now. Thus she picked the first active robot and raced for it hell bent. Then she clocked the big, destroying brute. Nothing fancy. Just got in its face and poked it in the eye. With a fist. That could punch through impervium. Yes!

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The armor around the machine's face shattered and scattered as the giantess' mighty fist connected. This robot, despite it's size was lifted from it's feet by the blow. Much like what happened to the one struck by Thrude. This robot didn't look quite as messed up from the blow, but it was still realing nonetheless. Like a turtle on it's back, it'd take a few seconds for this one to get back to it's feet.

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Wisp gathered her anger and pain into a tight little ball. As soon as Fulcrum had knocked one of the machine's flat on it's back, she pounced. Her teleport brought her a few feet above the destroyer's head. As she fell, odd light blue and black energy began to swirl around her hands and in her eyes. With a cry of rage, she drove a fist into the machine's face. The machine's steel body let out a horrible shriek as metal was torn apart by cosmic energies.

As soon as it had begun however, Wisp's assault was concluded and the only trace she'd even attacked was a fist-shaped dent in the machine's face, the spiderweb of cracks branching out from it, and a cloud of red and white smoke which quickly dissipated in the wind.

Landing back in her previous spot she looked at her glowing hands. "That... was impressive. How'd I do that?" she wondered aloud.

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Through the driving rain and wind, Ferros became aware that one of the robots was back on it's feet. Though he was very happy that two of the other heroes on site had the last robot under control. He decided it was best that the other robot didn't get the drop on them by sneaking up behind them. He urged his flying disk to take him closer to the machine.

Still struggling to maintain his footing in the terrible conditions, Ferros finally managed to get close enough. "What is it with mindless robot drones?" He asked no one in particular. He stretched out his consciousness, and reached out to the metals that made up the robot. Seconds later, the entire robot was liquefied. It poured onto the streets and sidewalk like the rain from the sky. The rains began to wash the metals away. Ferros dusted his hands off, "They never learn..." He turned back to see how the other heroes were doing, and if they needed his help.

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