Jump to content

Time and Chance (IC)

Recommended Posts

Ecclesiastes, Chapter 9, Verse 11: "I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to the intelligent, nor yet favor to men of knowledge; but time and chance happeneth to them all."

There are fewer gun battles in the Fens than you might think. It is true that the neighborhood isn't a safe place to live and that crime is pretty common. But it's also true that there's not enough money floating around to really support a gang, much less a real syndicate operation. For the most part the Fens is where the heavy criminals go to score some cheap pornography or some relatively low-cost drugs. The most violent crime you're likely to see is the occasional giant coin golem robbing the place. Most of the time, anyway.

The gun battle inside and outside the decrepit old warehouse had been going on for minutes by the time the first heroes arrived, the conflict between a rough-looking biker gang on the outside and what were (from the gang soldiers visible through the windows and from their shouts) a pinned-down group of Russian mafiya. The two groups traded shots and shouted obscenities at each other, the bikers using their mobility to try and cancel out the cover of the Russians. Normally even so, a half-dozen bikers against several dozen mobsters would have been a fool's errand. If not for the laser cannons they were carrying.

"Pew pew!" yelled the leader, a stalwart fellow in black and red as he fired a shot from his massive handcannon that disintegrated a chunk of brick as big as a man's torso. "Yeah, these are the best damn things since sliced bread! The Red Devils are going to take this city back from the Russkies one street at a time, yee-haw!" he ducked as a bullet whizzed over his head, but didn't so much as wobble on his bike as he returned fire into the warehouse proper. The locals, no fools, had long since cleared the streets.

Link to comment

Trouble in the Fens: Not an unusual state of affairs. When laser weapons were involved, now, that was out of the ordinary. Which is why a certain data-absorbing software entity, that had been written by a certain feline speedster, had picked up on the event rather quickly…

"Incident in Fens. High probability of gang labeled 'Red Devils' using exotic weaponry, most likely energy weapons, in warehouse firefight with not-yet-identified opposition. No data on involvement of other exotic abilities."

"Jeeves: Thank you. Jeeves: Get some rest." And within a small number of clock-seconds, a sand-colored blur arrived at the impromptu battleground: Jubatus, the Fastest Cat Alive!

With the world still frozen in the stillness of fast-time, the cheetah took in everything, looking at it from various angles to give himself a clear picture of the entire scene. Hmm. Looks like someone didn't realize it was a bad idea to bring guns to a laser fight—and vice versa, for that matter. And… yeah, that guy's at the top of my short list of Who's In Charge for the bikers. With that thought, Jubatus blurred onto the back of the putative leader's motorcycle and downshifted.

"Hi there!" the feline said, shouting loud enough to be clearly heard over the noise of the engine (not to mention all the noise of gunfire). "My name's Jubatus, and I'm way the hell faster than you. Care to stop shooting the crap out of innocent masonry?"

Link to comment

Megan Howell normally avoided the Fens like the plague. But she was currently returning from an early morning meeting with some architects and contractors at a property that had been purchased by one of Amir al-Misri's charitable foundations in partnership with his equity company, Summit Transnational. Though Summit's realty group was not directly connected with the economics group Megan was interning with, she had been sent to observe the meeting under the guise of "learning more about what all Summit does." In the back of her mind, Megan wondered if it did not also have to do with the fact that her mother was heavily involved in a number of charitable foundations around the city.

She was driving a nondescript rental car, as she had figured driving her BMW X-5 into the Fens was just asking for trouble. Of course, being a young, very attractive blonde in the Fens was likely asking for trouble as well, but there was less she could do about that.

The meeting had gone well, and Megan hoped that Amir's plans to try to help revitalize some of the area succeeded. This was only her second full week at Summit, but so far, things were going very well. She was learning a lot and was working with great people. Outside of work, things were getting interesting as well. Last Friday she had gone out to dinner with Kyle at an Italian restaurant he had suggested. They had already made plans for another date, for which Megan had bought tickets to the Blues Brothers musical.

Megan was pulled from her thoughts when an energy blast streaked across the intersection ahead of her, slamming into a light post and blasting it in half. Hitting the breaks, the young woman stared at the scene for a moment, now able to hear the distinct sound of gunfire from somewhere off to her left.

Oh great. She thought as she looked around a moment. There was very little traffic in this part of the Fens at this time of morning, and the few people that had been on the street were running away from the commotion or otherwise seeking shelter. Pulling the car up into an open parking space along the sidewalk, Megan grabbed a small backpack she had inside and her purse and climbed through the passenger side to exit onto the sidewalk. Ducked behind the car a moment, she then stood up and ran into a nearby alleyway. Once inside, she accelerated to superspeed, zipping down the alleyway and up a wall onto a rooftop.

In a blur of motion, she changed into her Velocity costume, and was then speeding back down the side of the building and into the street, the small backpack on her back. Moments later she was on another rooftop, overlooking the gun battle, taking a few moments to evaluate what was going on, the technology in her goggles helping considerably.

Link to comment

It had become a somewhat strange routine, but nevertheless, the Bee-Keeper III was once more soaring above the Fens. He wasn't there expecting trouble - in fact, it was quite the contrary! While the Fens were notorious for their seedy dealings to the budding Freedonian hero, it was only ever so rarely something more than petty thugs brawling or ne'er-do-wells struggling to rob a Go-Mart. To say it was 'nice' would be a misnomer; but rather, it was generally quiet by comparison to what felt like his usual shenanigans! And when you've had a heck of a week, sometimes it's nice to end it on a rather uneventful note.

But today? Today was different. Oh, man, was it different! From his lofty view, Baxter couldn't help but stare on in stupefaction at what he was looking at below. The suit had picked up the sounds; familiar sounds. Sounds that Baxter couldn't have possibly forgotten since the last time he'd been blasted by energy weapons. And sure enough, there it they were: men on motorcycles blasting at other armed men huddled inside a warehouse, their vague threats of reclamation through force of arms more than a little unsettling in the Bee-Keeper's eyes. Talk about a curve ball!

Now wasn't the time to gawk though! While the Bee-Keeper wasn't exactly savvy on what was going on, that was hardly the point. The point was that this little show of force in the streets of Freedom City was a serious health hazard. With the way those blasts were decimating the concrete, who knew what would happen if someone actually got hit! That wasn't going to happen. Not on the Bee-Keeper's watch! It was time to put an end to this fracas! Descending down to the street, metal wings beating impossibly fast and emitting a telltale buzz, the Hero of the Hive crashed to the asphalt surface below, almost intuitively striking a heroic pose as he saddled himself between the menagerie of men and their firepower.

"Alright, kidzz! Time to put the-- Oh! Hey, Jubatuzz!" the yellow-and-gold bee-motifed teen chimed through his modulated voice, not quite yelling despite the volume in his voice as he caught sight of the humanoid cheetah he'd missed during his oggling of the battle beforehand, granting his one-time ally a friendly, almost nonchalant wave before turning back to the goons surrounding him.

"I don't know what beef you guyzz have, and I totezz don't care. Whatever planzz you had? Yeah. Ruined now that we're here! Zzo here'zz the deal: you guyzz put the lazzerzz and zztuff away, tell uzz where you got em', and you get to go to jail without a buzzillion bruizzezz. I know! That'zz a pretty zzweet deal, right?" Now he was insulting them, clenched fists pressed against his hips as the Bee-Keeper stood in defiance of their comical little shootout. "Zzo whaddya fellazz zzay? Can we zztop thizz zzilly violenzze and juzzt turn ourzzelvezz in like nizze, zzivilizzed crookzz?"

Link to comment

"Hey, you out there!" came an accented shout from inside the warehouse. A mafiya member could just be seen, peering out the window with his gun in hand and tracksuit looking a little the worse for wear. "Those guys are crazy! They have guns that they got from some dealer from another dimension! Watch out for them!" A shot from one of the half-dozen whirling bikers drove him back inside, the Red Devils looking unintimidated even by the arrival of superheroes. Indeed, from the maniac grins on their bearded faces, it looked almost as if the Hells Angels-lookalikes had been counting on this very thing.

"C'mon, boys!" yelled the leader, revving his bike and zooming towards the new arrival. "You want to see where we got our guns? How they work? Well, let's show him how the Devils BURN!" And the fight was on!

Link to comment

Velocity watched the scene below for a few seconds, not liking the look of those weapons the bikers were carrying. She had after all, already seen what a stray blast from one of those could do. She saw the arrival of the new Bee-Keeper, whom she had read about (it was a not too hard to keep up on things when one could read at superspeed), and saw another speedster on the scene, Jubatus, she believed his name was. But the bikers did not seem impressed, in fact, they appeared ready to continue their assault, including the two heroes as targets now as well.

They should have taken the hint. She thought to herself as she noted a pair of bikers that were away from the two heroes, but close enough that she could catch them both in a sonic boom.

In a blur, she was off, running down the side of the building she was on and down onto the street, in a split second, she had crossed the space between her and the target point where she could catch the two bikers. As she approached, she accelerated herself to supersonic speed, cutting through the sound barrier to generate a shockwave. There was an audible *CRACK* in the air, followed almost immediately by an even louder *BOOM* which echoed down the block as a shockwave went out in all directions. Velocity was already at the next intersection, skidding to a halt as she looked back to see the results.

Link to comment

Looking back, the results weren't quite what Velocity might have hoped for. Only one of the bikers was down, having somersaulted right off his bike and landed hard enough on the pavement beneath to knock the wind out of him. She'd hurt another one, at least badly enough that he'd had to toss aside his cracked helmet, but the rest were still on their bikes and ready for action. Maybe whatever had empowered their weapons had empowered them too, either way, there was no denying that all but one was still in the fight. "Yee-haw, we've got one who wants a race!" yelled the leader, who'd lost his helmet in the affray. "Come on, boys, let's show how we can really move! HELL ON WHEELS!"

Link to comment

Hmm. Looks like I guessed wrong about who was leading this gang, Jubatus thought. My bad, and may as well disable this bad boy A-S-A-P. Not bothering to wait for a reply from the person whose bike he'd just gotten on, the feline upshifted, then dismounted and moved to the vehicle's back end. However great the bike's realtime velocity, it might as well have been parked, as far as Jube's accelerated eyes were concerned. He grasped the vehicle's rear fork in one forepaw; took hold of the rear wheel in his other forepaw; and wrenched the wheel backwards, his Timeshift concentrating his musclepower into a sharp pulse of densely concentrated force!

And… yes! The rear sprocket was clearly damaged, with more than a few of its teeth broken off and floating in the stillness of fast-time. The cheetah downshifted to confirm his 'kill'—and, yes, the chopper's engine roared like an enraged Valkyrie, the abrupt rise in its RPMs leading to an equally abrupt rise in torque, and the whole thing went down, machine and rider and all, sliding to rest in an inert tangle. Jubatus took a moment to confirm that the pilot was merely unconscious, not seriously damaged, and turned his attention to the rest of the gang…

Link to comment

With two of the uproarious bikers down for the count in the blink of an eye, there was no doubt that the tide of this gunfight was about to shift. The Bee-Keeper, still heroically poised amidst the ensuing chaos, was ready! With so many other heroes on the scene, it was time to put these villainous cads down before they put anyone else at risk.

Wings aflutter with a metallic whir, the Hero of the Hive hovered over the ground, streaking towards one of the ill-fortunate laser-toting bikers whom were so keen on causing a ruckus in the Fens. Like a freight train gone mad, a metal fist came crashing in against the criminal's face with a telltale WHAP! Staggered, the Bee-Keeper wasn't yet done. Catching him at the color and holding him aloft, the Apiary Avenger pressed the palm of his hand against the rough-and-ready fella's chest.

"Zzeriouzzly. You guyzz juzzt never wanna do it the eazzy way! Now, get ready to feel the ZZTING OF JUZZTIZZE!"

Then came the blast. There was no concussive burst. No flying ne'er-do-well to be strewn against the asphalt. There was only the Bee-Keeper, and a young motorcyclist with a basketball sized hole through his chest. Letting go, the former villain collapsed lifelessly against the ground, the Bee-Keeper resuming his heroic stance anew, unperturbed by the sleight he'd committed.

"Ha! No way I'm gonna let you guyzz get away with thizz! You're zzo going down!"

Link to comment

Silver Spider often patrolled through the Fens, and tonight was no different. Especially when she heard the police calling for backup through her earpiece. Swinging by one of the trains moving through the waterfront towards the area. Clinging to the top of a boxcar she was there in just a few minutes.

She had of course arrived just in time to watch an acquaintance and hero she had worked with previously punch a man wearing a biker gang's colors in the face and follow it up by unleashing a blast that ripped through his chest. Revulsion twisted the woman's stomach as she swung into range, landing on a nearby rooftop's ledge. Unable to make herself say anything, she quietly fired a quick burst of web-fluid in hopes of gumming up his lenses and keeping him from going any further over the line between hero and vigilante.

Link to comment

Even the biker, who had seen the of worst of Freedom City, were surprise. This wasn't what heroes where meant to do. There earlier jubilance was now displaced leaving behind instead a grim determination.

But without a leader they weren’t in any way coordinated, not that they were disciplined to start with. Only one of the biker was smart enough to concentrate his fire on Bee-Keeper. The other two just fired almost randomly at the other heroes.

Fear must have been a good motivator as the weapons beam struck Bee-Keeper squarely in the breastplate of his power armor.

Link to comment

Momentarily surprised by the coup d'etat of Silver Spider, the Bee-Keeper took the brunt of the blast right in his chest, the armored avenger letting loose only the mildest of wheezes as he clutched his smoldering plate. For a second the Bee-Keeper almost seemed stunned at the fact he man had winged him, exchanging a horrifying, faceless look between the goons with the laser rifles and his one-time ally turned Benedict Arnold.

"Alright! I zzee how it izz!" he chided, clearly upset that Silver Spider was turning against him and siding with these criminal scum. "Thought we were friendzz, Zzilver! Guezz we know where you zztand now; right nexxt to thezze blood-thirzzty criminalzz!"

It was on now; and the Bee-Keeper was all business as he spread his arms like some macabre puppeteer, fingers twitching at unseen strings.

"You zzhould have zzurrendered when you had the chanzze! Now I'll zzhow you why they call me the Bee-Keeper!"

In a deafeningly loud hum of activity, millions of minuscule robot bees poured forth from the hidden compartments of the Bee-Keeper's armor as their buzzing song became a symphony of destruction just reaching the crescendo of unfathomable doom, sweeping across the impromptu battlefield stinging and shocking everything in their wake. The swarming cloud of bees took to their masters' foes with cold precision, the Bee-Keeper himself orchestrating their lethal bombardments as he himself was enveloped in their nano-robotic embrace! All these nefarious goons would face the penalty for their villainous transgressions at the needle-like appendages of his cybernetic brood, and would forever know now the full wrath of the Bee-Keeper!

Link to comment

As the bee swarm faded, leaving behind unspeakable carnage among the gangsters and bikers on the street, suddenly a gateway opened in the street and a girl stepped out. None of the heroes knew the petite blonde with the young face, who looked the near side of sixteen and small for her age beyond that. But when she laughed, it was a cold, grey laugh like something from the depths of Hell itself. "Judgement day has come and the Fens will pay for their sins! I am the avenging angel of Wrath! Ahahahahah!" And with that, she made a gesture in the air and a gout of fire erupted from the air in front of her and blasted the tenement across the street from the warehouse: it had been too far away to be hit directly by the bee swarm, but the insects had chewed and bitten at the windows, and now the people inside were screaming as insects and fire alike poured their way in to burn and bite and pour down the unholy, murderous wrath of heroes gone mad upon the innocent citizens of Freedom City!

Link to comment

Velocity had viewed this little encounter as a good chance to work with some other heroes she had not met before. While the situation was certainly dangerous, it was not all that different from some other situations she had been in previously. But the encounter took a very deadly turn when the new Bee Keeper killed one of the bike gang members. The young speedster was stunned for a moment, nothing she had read about Bee Keeper III suggested he was some sort of vigilante.

She watched as another hero arrived, trying to distract or subdue the Bee Keeper and then the Bee Keeper unleashing the swarm of bees into the area in front of the warehouse. Thankfully Jubatus and the newcomer were able to avoid the bees, as did one bikers, but the other two bikers and many, if not all, the Russians inside the warehouse.

It was then that a teenage girl stepped out of a gateway that suddenly formed in the air. Velocity was about to shout a warning to the girl, when the teen cried out about Judgment day and blasted the building across from the warehouse, killing a number of people inside and setting the building on fire.

The speedster thought she might be able to put out the fire, but there were now two threats that needed to be dealt with first. Shooting forward in a blur, she came over to the teenage girl. "I don't know what the hell you think you're doing, but those people have not done anything!" The yellow clad speedster delivered a supersonic punch, but the teenage girl took the hit with no apparent effect.

Velocity was already gone, speeding off down the block and skidding to a halt once more, waiting to see what would happen next.

Link to comment

After trussing up the unconscious biker with duct-tape, the better to ensure that said malefactor stayed out of trouble even after he regained consciousness, Jubatus surveyed the battlefield that this section of the Fens had become. Then the Bee-Keeper's voice rang out:

"You zzhould have zzurrendered when you had the chanzze! Now I'll zzhow you why they call me the Bee-Keeper!"

In a deafeningly loud hum of activity, millions of minuscule robot bees poured forth from the hidden compartments of the Bee-Keeper's armor as their buzzing song became a symphony of destruction…


The cybernetic swarm hung motionless in the air, stopped dead in the stillness of fast-time. Too damn many of the little bastards, Jubatus thought. No way I'm quick enough to swat 'em all before somebody gets hurt. Well, maybe I can cheat. Let's see what makes these toys tick.

The cheetah extracted some tools from his Vest of Many Things, and methodically prodded at one of the bee-bots as it floated in place, seemingly inert. Hmmm… there's a seam, and… gotcha! It pried open real good! Now, where's the power supply?

Jubatus was operating at a tempo of 80, which meant that each passing second of clock-time gave him more than a minute of his time to investigate the workings of the little machine. Okay, that bit's an electrical coupling… Wings driven by a mechanical linkage right there… And that thing's a heat-sink… As the feline worked, he quickly realized that there just wasn't any on-board power source; all the mechanical workings took up so much space within the bee-bot's tiny casing, that there simply wasn't room for a battery or fuel cell! And that means this bad boy runs off of broadcast power. Betcha half-a-megabuck the transmitter's built into the armor. And a few seconds—minutes—of further thought later, Jubatus had a plan: Wire up a D-cell battery to the cyber-insect, and rig the connection so that the bee-bot would overload, taking itself (and the battery) out in a massive EMP which should, in turn, take a good-sized bite out of the swarm. And…

…success! When Jubatus closed the final connection, there was a bright flash of actinic light and a pulse of ozone, and every bee-bot within a 35-foot radius was reduced to inert metal and plastic!

Unfortunately, the swarm looked to be about 100 feet across.

Fortunately, Jube's Vest of Many Things held more batteries…

Link to comment

Noticing how easily he had blocked her last attempt at blinding him, and now surrounded by robotic bees, Silver Spider tried to judge where the armored man had been in the cloud. Firing a multitude of quick bursts of web fluid in his general area, the arachnid themed heroine attempted to avoid any counter-attacks from a hero she had worked with before. With any luck, the blobs of webbing will have left him distracted and open to one of the others' attacks.

Note to self, grab a couple of these bee-bots when this is done, she thought to herself, a few idea for new crime fighting tools coming to her even as she tried to avoid being hit.

Link to comment

Behind the facade of a cold and calculating hive-mind creature, Baxter's face was an odd amalgam of grimly bizarre glee and mild annoyance as he continued to play the maestro with his maelstrom of bees. The other heroes he'd so hoped would understand only seemed intent on making his job harder; but there was always a silver lining as Quickstep made her way onto the scene! If they wanted a ruckus, then his former friends were going to get a ruckus!

"Why can't you guyzz underzztand?!" he buzzed back harshly from somewhere within the center of the cybernetic storm. "It'zz the only way! Freedom Zzity izz overrun with criminalzz; and every day, more take their plazze! The only way to zzhow them they aren't welcome izz to put an end to it - to them! To everything they reprezzent! Without criminalzz, the zzity'll be a zzafer plazze for everyone, and it'll be zzo eazzy to keep it'zz zzitizzenzz from turning down that road!"

The Bee-Keeper paused, letting the weight of his words - no, his very ideals - linger for a moment, before continuing, shifting his gaze between the lone remaining biker, his colleague, and then finally resting his eyes upon Silver Spider and Jubatus; his harassers of the worst variety. Twice had they tried to ruin his machinations; this would not stand!

"I guezz you'll juzzt have to zzee it for yourzzelvezz... you'll have to experienzze our Wrath firzzt hand!" Turning to his lone ally in this endeavor, the Bee-Keeper barked out his plan to the teleporting teen, pointing one finger towards the lone remaining biker, "Quickzztep! Don't let that crook get away! I'll take care of my... friendzz."

With the last words of the Bee-Keeper uttered, they almost rang of a wounded, angered soul laced with salt; but the Hero of the Hive was all business now. Pivoting on his heel and taking to the sky, the author of the automated swarm directed his minuscule brothers and sisters like a master composer, their ranks quickly replenishing themselves even after Jubatus' little upset. Yet, it didn't seem to move. The cloud remained poised right where it was, unflinching as it swirled around the streets of the Fens, the bees mauling everything in their path as they went. Cold and cruel, the Bee-Keeper III pointed the palm of his hand towards the duo below, letting loose a stream of highly focused energy that rippled through the swarm from his camouflaged position -- the same energy he used to blow a hole through that first biker!

Link to comment

"Ahahah!" laughed Quickstep at the carnage she saw before her, looking obscenely pleased at the wicked deeds done on the streets of the Fens by her and the Bee-Keeper. "Go forth, my brother, and teach them FEAR! This city will be cleansed by fire in the name of Wrath! And I will be His darkest disciple! Hahahahahah!" Her laughter was cold and dark, like something from winter itself. Leaving behind the burning tenement, she disappeared into another wormhole, leaving behind only the quick glimpse of cold metallic walls and darkness before she disappeared entirely, leaving the battered heroes still standing to deal with the carnage left behind by the Bee-Keeper and the armored villain-turned-hero-turned-supervillain himself!

Link to comment

Velocity felt her stomach sink as the Bee-Keeper turned on the other two heroes, delivering powerful blast to both. The one small bit of good news (well, semi-good news really) was that Quickstep did not stay to continue helping, but instead disappeared once again, though that only meant she was likely to be causing trouble somewhere else now.

Gritting her teeth, the yellow clad speedster turned and zipped towards the hero gone mad. The swarm of bees was still everywhere, but to her they seemed to be almost standing still. She weaved between them and soon reached the armored figure. As she did a couple of weeks ago when facing Bonebreaker, the speedster focused on using more of the blinding speed of her hypersonic punch to increase the impact of the attack. As she reach him, she called out, "Bees? Really? What kind of theme is that? Lame!" There was a faint *CRACK* as her hand broke the sound barrier, striking the Bee-Keeper. There was a loud *WHAM* from the impact, but the armored figure took it without any noticeable effect.

That's not good Velocity thought as she circled around, a yellow blur. Gritting her teeth, she tried to hit him again. There was another *CRACK*, but her timing was off, and her attacked missed. Circling half a dozen more times, another idea come to mind.

"Hey Bee-Zero!" She called out. "Catch me if you can!" With that, she turned and started off down the road way from the scene of the battle, hoping to draw him away from the other two injured heroes.

Speeding up slightly as she went, she took out her Freedom League communicator. "This is Velocity, I hope someone can hear this. I have two badly injured heroes down in the Fens, we were attacked by the Bee Keeper. I am trying to lead him away. If anyone can set up an ambush for him, let me know and I will bring him there!"

As she got a bit further, she began vibrating her body's molecules, until she was insubstantial. While she could easily have been gone from sight, she wanted Bee Keeper to follow her, so she slowed considerably, ready to speed up once the chase was on.

Link to comment

It didn't take long for a response to come over Velocity's commlink. "Velocity, this is Fleur de Joie. I read you, I'm coming to help." The veteran plant controller's voice was tired, but still calm and reassuring despite the circumstances. She didn't even seem surprised to hear that Beekeeper had turned evil and started attacking other heroes. "Can you lead him into Mona-Glenn Park, down on Kendall Street by the bridge? My ETA there is sixty seconds."

Fleur popped into the park by the bridge seconds after leaving the rooftop in the West End and immediately looked around to make sure she was alone. The park wasn't a popular spot in the winter, and even less so on a day when violence was rocking the area. A look to the sky and the streets didn't reveal Velocity or the Beekeeper yet, but they'd hopefully be coming along. She concealed herself in the trees and waited, seeds at the ready in her hand.

Link to comment

Distracted by the speedster's taunt for only a moment, it nearly cost the Bee-Keeper as Silver Spider let loose another assault against the aggressive apiary avenger. Just barely pulling his frame out of the way, the Hero of the Hive whirled around to meet his wounded adversary, blaster at the ready as it hummed with lethal energy. It seemed inevitable that the Bee-Keeper was going to return fire as his armored palm glowed maliciously, his retribution swift and terrible.

But it never came. For whatever reason, the Bee-Keeper lowered his armament and simply stared on, his insect-like facade as cold and unflinching as it had ever been.

"You're not even worth it, friend," he chided through that modulated voice of his as though he were truly scorned by the turncoat antics of his former allies, turning instead towards where Velocity had scampered off to. "Get outta here. Run along and tell your buddiezz what happened. Tell em' that thizz zzity won't zztand for criminalzz anymore. Tell em' that the Bee-Keeper izz coming for them nexxt."

Taking to the skies anew, the Bee-Keeper gave chase after his quick-footed colleague turned counter-agent, his ire irked even more from her quaint jib. He was most certainly not a Bee-Zero! And bees were great! He'd just have to show her!

After losing sight of his quarry - much to his dismay! - the Bee-Keeper plopped himself down in the park, surveying the area for his missing target.

"Hey! I know you're here! Zzeriouzzly, juzzt zzurrender, and I won't go zzo bad on you for dizzin' beezz!" he barked in futility in a halfhearted endeavor to stall for time. "And what'zz wrong with a bee-theme, huh?! Lookzz to me like you're zzcared of a little zzting for being zzuch a brave and bold hero who can't zzee that thizz izz the only way to purge Freedom Zzity of it'zz criminal zzcum! Juzzt think about it! How much zzafer would it bee if there wazz no more crime, huh? We wouldn't even need zzuperheroezz anymore! No more muggingzz, or zzhootingzz. That'zz why thozze bikerzz had to go, man! Juzzt too dangerouzz."

Link to comment

From behind her tree, Fleur sized up the aggressively alert stance of the Beekeeper doppelganger. She murmured into her commlink, hoping Velocity would hear, "He's watching for an ambush, I'm not sure I could get him in one swipe. I'm going to try something. Be ready in case it doesn't work."

Pushing the escaped tendrils of her green hair behind her ears, Fleur stepped boldly out in front of the trees, putting herself in the path of the Beekeeper. "They don't understand!" she called, her voice carrying to him across the park. "They haven't learned about the majesty and power of bees, or the clarity of purpose that comes from defending your home to the death! But I do." She took a few more steps towards him, struggling not to tense in anticipation of an attack. "I live with the bees, and I watch them every day, and I understand the lesson we need to learn from them. They don't bother with capturing intruders, or rehabilitating creatures who attack them. They don't hang back and watch while evil exists among them! They'll kill and die to protect their home, and anything that attacks them is condemning itself to death. That's what you're trying to do, isn't it, Beekeeper? You just want us all to be safe, whatever it takes."

She smiled at him and continued walking forward. "You're right, you know. I've been a hero for so long now, and nothing changes in this city. The villains always come back, they're never stopped for good. We need to change that! I want to help you." She put a hand to her earpiece as though getting a message, then looked to the sky. "The League is coming for you," she told him with great concern. "They'll be here any moment. Let me help you. I can take you to the other side of the city without being seen, and we can get to work."

Link to comment

Of all the people in all the places in Freedom City, the Bee-Keeper honestly wasn't expecting Fleur de Joie to show up on the scene! He recoiled only slightly when she emerged from the brush, startling him and diverting his attention from his intended target. He was half expecting Fleur to just wrap him up and throw him to the wolves - or the prison, or whatever it was she did with individuals she deemed dangerous! - but, much to his earnest surprise, seemed to be all too forward with helping his cause!

"Yezz! Yezz!" agreed the Bee-Keeper, smacking a heavy handed fist into his other open palm for dynamic effect. "Finally! Zzomeone who underzztandzz!"

What a relief! For a moment, Baxter thought he'd have to square off against one of his closest and dearest friends! The thought itself was mortifying enough, let alone to have been forced to actually go through with it. And now, with an insider in the League, maybe she could help him get the word out to the streets!

But then his optimism took a nosedive at Fleur's plea to assist him, what with the Freedom League on the way. For a moment, Baxter almost seemed to panic. Fighting a bunch of regulars was one thing, but the entire Freedom League?! That was a bit much, even for the Bee-Keeper!

"Oh, no! No, no, no!" the heavily armored hero murmured, looking around for a moment as if debating an escape route before visibly tensing up and growing agitated. That chick! She must have called them in! Thankfully, the green-haired heroine was one step ahead. Boy, was Baxter glad to have a friend in Fleur.

"Alright, alright. Zzoner we get outta here, the zzooner we can get back to zzweeping the zztreetzz clean," he buzzed with enthusiasm, striking up a new, suitably dramatic pose at this twist of fate.

Link to comment

When Bee Keeper had touched down in the park where Fleur had asked Velocity to lead him, the yellow clad speedster had begun circling, keeping between four hundred and five hundred feet away. Hearing Fleur's transmission, she replied, "Got it, I'm close enough that I can be there in a millisecond if he doesn't go for it."

The speedster continued circling, slowing down to just under supersonic speed to avoid any unintended sonic booms. All the while, the technology in her goggles allowed her to keep a close eye on what was happening as Fleur reveled herself and tried to convince the Bee Keeper she was on his side. For a brief moment Velocity was about to zip in towards the hero turned rogue, as he seemed to tense up, but then he relaxed and struck an overly dramatic pose, apparently convinced by what the green haired woman had to say. So Velocity just continued to circle, waiting to be sure he did not change his mind and attack.

Link to comment

"Absolutely," Fleur agreed. She twined a vine up the nearest tree, then opened a flower on it the size of a phone booth. "Quickly," she encouraged, gesturing to the flower. "You remember how it works, yes? Just step up to it and it will close over you. You'll be in a very green place for just a few minutes while I move across the city. I'll let you out the minute we're away from the League patrol, and we'll make up a plan to efficiently deal with the criminals who've been let loose on the streets for much too long." She looked to the sky again, seeming nervous that the League would come down on them at any moment!

Link to comment
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Create New...