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Heridfel

Back to the Present [AoO]

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Icarus is the first to return to Freedom City in 2008, though when time travel is involved, "first" can get a little confusing. Certainly, after his vision cleared and he caught himself on the ground, he didn't see either of the others. When a human hand came out of nowhere, he took a step back, then watched as a young Japanese man followed it out of nowhere. He hadn't seen him before, but it only took a moment before he asked hesitantly, "Nanowire, is that you?"

Grimalkin came through whatever invisible portal that Nanowire used more quickly, running into his back. Icarus smiles within the mask, "Yeah, that's got to be you. Glad to see they got you back." He grimaces slightly, again hidden by the mask, "How long were you back there... and where's your suit?!"


When the three take the time to view their surroundings, they find that they are in the same place as they were when Icarus first created the errant portal. Despite that similarity, things appear rather different. The air has a red haze to it, like at sunset, but the sun is still fairly high in the sky. The buildings are all reinforced with metal on their exterior, and there's no trash whatsoever on the street. For that matter, there are no people on the street either.

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Icarus is the first to return to Freedom City in 2008, though when time travel is involved, "first" can get a little confusing. Certainly, after his vision cleared and he caught himself on the ground, he didn't see either of the others. When a human hand came out of nowhere, he took a step back, then watched as a young Japanese man followed it out of nowhere. He hadn't seen him before, but it only took a moment before he asked hesitantly, "Nanowire, is that you?"

Grimalkin came through whatever invisible portal that Nanowire used more quickly, running into his back. Icarus smiles within the mask, "Yeah, that's got to be you. Glad to see they got you back." He grimaces slightly, again hidden by the mask, "How long were you back there... and where's your suit?!"


When the three take the time to view their surroundings, they find that they are in the same place as they were when Icarus first created the errant portal. Despite that similarity, things appear rather different. The air has a red haze to it, like at sunset, but the sun is still fairly high in the sky. The buildings are all reinforced with metal on their exterior, and there's no trash whatsoever on the street. For that matter, there are no people on the street either.

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Grimalkin came through whatever invisible portal that Nanowire used more quickly, running into his back. Icarus smiles within the mask, "Yeah, that's got to be you. Glad to see they got you back." He grimaces slightly, again hidden by the mask, "How long were you back there... and where's your suit?!"

Grim shakes her head and vigorously rubs her nose.

"Ow! Well, I guess it worked-"

She stops when she realizes she's still in her silly Arabian Nights outfit, with no mask to hide her face, right in front of Icarus. With a yelp, she covers her eyes.

"Ahh! Secret identity not so secret!"

In a matter of seconds, her outfit blurs into vapor and reforms into her patrolling duds, complete with domino mask for privacy; sighing with relief, she drops her hand.

"There we go. Nice to see you made it back, too, Ick; how did you..."

When the three take the time to view their surroundings, they find that they are in the same place as they were when Icarus first created the errant portal. Despite that similarity, things appear rather different. The air has a red haze to it, like at sunset, but the sun is still fairly high in the sky. The buildings are all reinforced with metal on their exterior, and there's no trash whatsoever on the street. For that matter, there are no people on the street either.

Grim's eyes go wide at the radically different look of their surroundings, and there is a sudden knot of fear in her belly.

"Um, guys? This looks...bad."

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Grimalkin came through whatever invisible portal that Nanowire used more quickly, running into his back. Icarus smiles within the mask, "Yeah, that's got to be you. Glad to see they got you back." He grimaces slightly, again hidden by the mask, "How long were you back there... and where's your suit?!"

Grim shakes her head and vigorously rubs her nose.

"Ow! Well, I guess it worked-"

She stops when she realizes she's still in her silly Arabian Nights outfit, with no mask to hide her face, right in front of Icarus. With a yelp, she covers her eyes.

"Ahh! Secret identity not so secret!"

In a matter of seconds, her outfit blurs into vapor and reforms into her patrolling duds, complete with domino mask for privacy; sighing with relief, she drops her hand.

"There we go. Nice to see you made it back, too, Ick; how did you..."

When the three take the time to view their surroundings, they find that they are in the same place as they were when Icarus first created the errant portal. Despite that similarity, things appear rather different. The air has a red haze to it, like at sunset, but the sun is still fairly high in the sky. The buildings are all reinforced with metal on their exterior, and there's no trash whatsoever on the street. For that matter, there are no people on the street either.

Grim's eyes go wide at the radically different look of their surroundings, and there is a sudden knot of fear in her belly.

"Um, guys? This looks...bad."

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Grimalkin came through whatever invisible portal that Nanowire used more quickly, running into his back. Icarus smiles within the mask, "Yeah, that's got to be you. Glad to see they got you back." He grimaces slightly, again hidden by the mask, "How long were you back there... and where's your suit?!"

Ren looks up at the armored form of Icarus, then back down at his very unarmored and undisguised self. Suddenly, he felt very naked. "Beautiful..." he grumbled to himself. At least Sean had already seen him without his armor, so it wasn't catastrophic, but still... "Look, the armor isn't important right now-"

When the three take the time to view their surroundings, they find that they are in the same place as they were when Icarus first created the errant portal. Despite that similarity, things appear rather different. The air has a red haze to it, like at sunset, but the sun is still fairly high in the sky. The buildings are all reinforced with metal on their exterior, and there's no trash whatsoever on the street. For that matter, there are no people on the street either.

Ren's jaw dropped as he gazed out among the DMZ-esque surroundings. For a couple moments, he's completely speechless. Then he looks back at Icarus, an expression of fury written all over his features. "What did you do?" he ground out from between clenched teeth.

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Grimalkin came through whatever invisible portal that Nanowire used more quickly, running into his back. Icarus smiles within the mask, "Yeah, that's got to be you. Glad to see they got you back." He grimaces slightly, again hidden by the mask, "How long were you back there... and where's your suit?!"

Ren looks up at the armored form of Icarus, then back down at his very unarmored and undisguised self. Suddenly, he felt very naked. "Beautiful..." he grumbled to himself. At least Sean had already seen him without his armor, so it wasn't catastrophic, but still... "Look, the armor isn't important right now-"

When the three take the time to view their surroundings, they find that they are in the same place as they were when Icarus first created the errant portal. Despite that similarity, things appear rather different. The air has a red haze to it, like at sunset, but the sun is still fairly high in the sky. The buildings are all reinforced with metal on their exterior, and there's no trash whatsoever on the street. For that matter, there are no people on the street either.

Ren's jaw dropped as he gazed out among the DMZ-esque surroundings. For a couple moments, he's completely speechless. Then he looks back at Icarus, an expression of fury written all over his features. "What did you do?" he ground out from between clenched teeth.

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"I just went to ASTRO Labs. Someone there said that it was easy to return us back to this time. Weren't they the ones who sent you guys back?" Icarus asks. He's still a little confused about Nanowire's lack of concern about his armor being gone. Certainly, if his armor was taken from him, he'd be more than a little upset. Not so bad as when it also kept him young, but still...

He focuses on the conversation and frowns as he takes a good look at the surroundings. Taking a deep breath, he allows the helm to meld into the rest of his armor so that he can see them both clearly. The effect is almost reminscent of the way that Grimalkin can change her whole self.

"Something's going on here. Maybe we ought to..."

Whatever he was about to suggest is lost in the sound of the prop of a helicopter flying in. A searchlight can be seen coming down from about a block away, and moving fast. He just waves his arm and starts to run towards an alleyway.

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"I just went to ASTRO Labs. Someone there said that it was easy to return us back to this time. Weren't they the ones who sent you guys back?" Icarus asks. He's still a little confused about Nanowire's lack of concern about his armor being gone. Certainly, if his armor was taken from him, he'd be more than a little upset. Not so bad as when it also kept him young, but still...

He focuses on the conversation and frowns as he takes a good look at the surroundings. Taking a deep breath, he allows the helm to meld into the rest of his armor so that he can see them both clearly. The effect is almost reminscent of the way that Grimalkin can change her whole self.

"Something's going on here. Maybe we ought to..."

Whatever he was about to suggest is lost in the sound of the prop of a helicopter flying in. A searchlight can be seen coming down from about a block away, and moving fast. He just waves his arm and starts to run towards an alleyway.

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"Something's going on here. Maybe we ought to..."

Whatever he was about to suggest is lost in the sound of the prop of a helicopter flying in. A searchlight can be seen coming down from about a block away, and moving fast. He just waves his arm and starts to run towards an alleyway.

Grim looks up and shakes her head.

"Man, I hate helicopters. C'mon, let's do the running thing, Nano" She slips into camouflage mode and starts to follow Icarus, shimmering in and out of view as she runs.

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"Something's going on here. Maybe we ought to..."

Whatever he was about to suggest is lost in the sound of the prop of a helicopter flying in. A searchlight can be seen coming down from about a block away, and moving fast. He just waves his arm and starts to run towards an alleyway.

Grim looks up and shakes her head.

"Man, I hate helicopters. C'mon, let's do the running thing, Nano" She slips into camouflage mode and starts to follow Icarus, shimmering in and out of view as she runs.

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The helicopter did provide the impetus to move for Ren. But as he moved after Icarus (and presumably Grim) he couldn't help but feel more and more anxious about his surroundings. This was not the Freedom City he left, not by a long shot. Something in the past, something fundamental, had changed, and Ren was betting Icarus was responsible for it.

He slid into the alleyway behind the armored man and hugged the wall, staying as far away from the searchlights as possible.

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The helicopter did provide the impetus to move for Ren. But as he moved after Icarus (and presumably Grim) he couldn't help but feel more and more anxious about his surroundings. This was not the Freedom City he left, not by a long shot. Something in the past, something fundamental, had changed, and Ren was betting Icarus was responsible for it.

He slid into the alleyway behind the armored man and hugged the wall, staying as far away from the searchlights as possible.

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As the three of them run towards the alleyway, something moves out of the shadows. A gravelly voice speaks.

"You're here. Good. Come with me," the man says over the din. His gray cowl is stained with dirt, and the body of his suit looks like it is an urban camouflage pattern. Despite the changes to his costume, Grimalkin and Icarus can both recognize Foreshadow, a hero in Freedom City for several years. The Foreshadow that they knew had both of his eyes, but this man is missing his left eye, loosely covering it with a patch.

Icarus stops running before he collides with the man, then glances back to Grimalkin and Nanowire. His natural inclination to distrust a hero (and his face is still visible!, he thinks to himself with a shudder) would normally have him ignore the command, but Nanowire's a sitting duck right now. Plus, if he can see Grimalkin when she pulls her disappearing act, that 'copter might as well.

Making his own decision, he nods and looks willing to follow Foreshadow.

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As the three of them run towards the alleyway, something moves out of the shadows. A gravelly voice speaks.

"You're here. Good. Come with me," the man says over the din. His gray cowl is stained with dirt, and the body of his suit looks like it is an urban camouflage pattern. Despite the changes to his costume, Grimalkin and Icarus can both recognize Foreshadow, a hero in Freedom City for several years. The Foreshadow that they knew had both of his eyes, but this man is missing his left eye, loosely covering it with a patch.

Icarus stops running before he collides with the man, then glances back to Grimalkin and Nanowire. His natural inclination to distrust a hero (and his face is still visible!, he thinks to himself with a shudder) would normally have him ignore the command, but Nanowire's a sitting duck right now. Plus, if he can see Grimalkin when she pulls her disappearing act, that 'copter might as well.

Making his own decision, he nods and looks willing to follow Foreshadow.

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Ren nearly jumped in surprise as the man detached from... somewhere... and spoke to them. The shock had just worn off when Icarus actually started following the guy! Did he know him somehow?

"Hey, wait a minute!" he hissed urgently as he followed after them. "Who are you? How did you know we'd be here?"

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Ren nearly jumped in surprise as the man detached from... somewhere... and spoke to them. The shock had just worn off when Icarus actually started following the guy! Did he know him somehow?

"Hey, wait a minute!" he hissed urgently as he followed after them. "Who are you? How did you know we'd be here?"

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Foreshadow doesn't respond, seeming content to leave Nanowire in the dark as long as he does what he was ordered. When Icarus realizes this, he speaks back to Nanowire.

"He sees the future. We've never fought... and the last I heard, he still had both his eyes," he says back to Nanowire. He turns his head back towards the direction he's running, ducking under some scaffolding as he does so. He does it smoothly. It seems like the radar has uses outside of combat as well.

Foreshadow ducks down and seems to disappear for a moment. He re-appears, and the three of them can see that a small tunnel has formed in the ground. Without a word, he waves for them to follow him, and heads into the dark.

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Now that she is out of the helicopter's line of sight, Grim suddenly reappears by Nano's side, and gently rests her hand on his arm. "We need to get you armored up, hon; I'll keep my eyes peeled for any junked cars or stuff like that." She darts forward up to the tunnel, her pupils dilating until her eyes go almost entirely black, but waits by the entrance for Nano to catch up.

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Ren simply grumbled and continued forwards as Icarus gave an unsatisfying answer to his question. He still had no idea what was going on here, and the more he thought about it, the more sure he was that Icarus was behind the changes to the timestream. The fact that Foreshadow, a hero that apparently saw the future, had come to meet them, only hammered that suspicion home.

Now that she is out of the helicopter's line of sight, Grim suddenly reappears by Nano's side, and gently rests her hand on his arm. "We need to get you armored up, hon; I'll keep my eyes peeled for any junked cars or stuff like that." She darts forward up to the tunnel, her pupils dilating until her eyes go almost entirely black, but waits by the entrance for Nano to catch up.

And all of a sudden, the world didn't seem so bleak anymore. Ren turned towards Lynn and whispered, "Thanks," almost under his breath. Too quiet for any normal ears to hear, but with what he'd learned about Lynn, plenty loud enough for her. Lynn's concern about his well-being was touching, and he made a mental note to do something nice for her later. Maybe like take her out somewhere...

A progressive scan filter snapped into place over Ren's eyes, allowing him to see in the dark just as easily as a normal person would in daylight. He stepped up to the hole where Lynn waited for him and motioned ahead with an exaggerated sweep of his arm and a wry smile. "After you, m'lady."

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Icarus couldn't hear Ren's response, but he did get what Grimalkin originally said. As he climbs down into the tunnel, he's thinking about what it means.

"That explains why he isn't worried about not having his armor, if he can somehow reform it. Some sort of techopath, maybe? It seemed like science, not magic, but I'm not one to talk," he thinks to himself. He follows behind Foreshadow, and on a lark, looks past him with his radar. Curiously, it looks like the front of the tunnel is changing position, and there's something moving near the front of it. It's too far away to tell what, though.

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"After you, m'lady."

Grim smiles and mimes a curtsy. "Thank you, kind sir." Before stepping into the tunnel, she adds softly, "You're welcome." With her excellent night vision, she's easily able to catch up to Icarus. "Hey big guy; you okay here in the dark?"

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"What, me?" Icarus says as he looks back to her. "Sure. I can see in the dark as good as day. This suit isn't just to keep me from getting hurt." He wonders for a moment whether it was wise to tell a heroine that, but honestly, it didn't seem like she posed too much of a threat. He wasn't about to let her know that he could still see her when she went invisible, after all.

"So explain this to me. Did that Macleod guy send you two back as well?" he asks. "I would've told him to wait till we all got there, but he just jumped right ahead."

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"What, me?" Icarus says as he looks back to her. "Sure. I can see in the dark as good as day. This suit isn't just to keep me from getting hurt." He wonders for a moment whether it was wise to tell a heroine that, but honestly, it didn't seem like she posed too much of a threat. He wasn't about to let her know that he could still see her when she went invisible, after all.

"So explain this to me. Did that Macleod guy send you two back as well?" he asks. "I would've told him to wait till we all got there, but he just jumped right ahead."

Grim shakes her head. "I don't know who the heck you're talking about; we had to track down a magic mirror, which took a while." She shrugs and looks falsely modest. "My first spell went off pretty well, I think; must run in the family."

She looks back towards Ren, and then back to Icarus, shaking her head. "He was right," she says softly. "We screwed up; maybe one of us, maybe all of us, but we messed it all up. We broke the world somehow."

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She looks back towards Ren, and then back to Icarus, shaking her head. "He was right," she says softly. "We screwed up; maybe one of us, maybe all of us, but we messed it all up. We broke the world somehow."

Ren simply grumbled to himself at Lynn's conclusion, but to be perfectly honest, he wasn't sure if he hadn't had something to do with how the way the world turned out. The thought was not sitting well with him. "And so now what?" he whispered back to her, almost helplessly. "What does that mean for us... for all of us?" he added in quickly at the end.

"So where are we going?" he called up to Foreshadow, as loudly as he dared under the circumstances.

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"Maybe this just looks bad," says Icarus. He's doing his best to think positive, still in a good mood from his father still being alive, and his battlesuit having been fixed.

"It is bad," Foreshadow says, not turning back as he walks down the tunnel. "Centurion is ruling over the world with an iron fist. Ever since he killed Omega, he was never the same. This... this started four years ago. He claimed that he had had an epiphany; that superhumans were responsible for all the wrongs on Earth, or at least all the ones that mattered. He began in Freedom City.

The ones who didn't join up with him just disappeared, and no one seemed to know where they had gone. Of course, since most of them were villains, we all assumed that they had just gone deeper into hiding. It took the death of the Master Mage, Adrian Eldrich, to alert us to the danger. Lady Tarot and I barely escaped with our lives. After that, a lot of the ones who said they were with Centurion also haven't been seen again. A few have, and they're worse. It was then that he let his secret slip. When Centurion breached Omega's core and killed him, Omega somehow possessed him. It took ten years for him to take over completely. Now, Omega has all of his powers and all of Centurion's powers combined. He prefers to be called Centurion now. He delights in his corruption of our greatest hero.

You wanted to know where we're going? We're going to the resistance. The three of you have the best chance of getting us help to fight Centurion, and you're going to help us.."

The speech ends, and anyone watching beyond Foreshadow can see that the tunnel has opened up into a large cavern or room. Behind them, the tunnel is filling itself back in, leaving no evidence of their entry.

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