The Stonewall Bastion

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Laggy Lagiacrus, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. ((OOC))

    Azuris Town.
    A beautiful port town, with the smell of the sea in everyone’s nostrils, the sky blue and cloudless, and the sun beaming down its golden rays of life. Ships and boats came, ships and boats went. Crabbing and fishing were what the place was famous for – Azuris seafood was considered some of the best around, renowned by many a gourmet, and sold by the bucketload. People reasoned that overfishing was taking place, but, like always, there was a backup plan for this – the multitude of fish and crab farms scattered about the place meant that fishing and crabbing could go on, as long as the farms were kept stocked.

    Unfortunately, disaster was to befall the denizens of this seaside haven, disaster beyond the help of the local police force. Disaster from another planet – not even from this galaxy. In the age of superheroes, this may not have been a problem, as they would have likely pounded the invaders back to where they came from. However, when the automatons emerged , things did not look bright. Coming down in metal pods, each machine was uniform in its appearance, immensely bulky, and well over six feet tall. Though humanoid in appearance, their chests were exaggeratedly big, they were completely black, and had no facial features – save for the line across the middle of their faces, a glowing red visual sensor. All in all, a completely typical crone, usually sent to test the strength of another race.

    A local policeman held his hand at his side, ready to draw his firearm in the case of emergency. He never got the chance – he was shot in the chest by a blood—red beam, from the palm of one of the drones. He was thrown back like a ragdoll, his burnt chest smoking, top burnt clean through. The beam apparently destroyed non-living matter, and when it connected with a living being, it seemed to take effect by hitting them like a white-hot shotgun blast. Not that the policeman had time to think about that, for he was dead. Other members of the force around the area pumped lead into the programmed metal men, but they did nothing but bounce harmlessly off of the surface, while beams indiscriminately slaughtered both civilian and police.

    “Team One, assemble. Crisis in Azuris Town. Repeat, Team One is to assemble. Please assemble at your designated briefing room.”
    Team One, one of the many teams Continuum Conundrum had formed, comprised of several superheroes, each meant to compliment the other’s skills. One of the members was John Marsh, alternatively known as Olympian. Technically, he was the second, but nobody made much of a fuss about it, given that the other one had stopped superhero activities more than fifty years ago. And, though not gifted with super speed like some of his allies, thirty miles per hour was plenty fast for getting to the briefing room.

    “Reporting for duty, mister Conundrum sir!”
    “Just sit down, John. Wait for the others. Not everybody’s as eager to break their necks as you are.”
    “With respect, sir, they did agree to come here…”
    “People agree to do a lot of things, but how many actually act when the time comes, hm? Now, as I said, sit down.”
    Continuum Conundrum – his real name lost in fire and shrouded in mystery – motioned towards one of the chairs, a light blue swivelling affair that seemed rather reminiscent of an office worker’s. The room itself was sufficiently large, with one side giving a view into space, a view which most newcomers were still getting to grips with. With its cold metal walls and floor, it seemed like a typical sci-fi space base, though the fact that the Falligreyan Watchtower was suspended in the space between dimensions was enough to separate it from the usual.

    John took his seat at the long, rectangular table, and began drumming his fingers.
  2. It had been a while since Tamsin had truly relaxed. It was difficult to get to grips with this place, particularly not when you were of such a potentially weak disposition. However, the girl was just about keeping herself together - and was at least beginning to feel at home in the strange place. Not long ago, such metaphysical wonders had not even crossed her mind, and now she was living in one. It was pretty amazing that she wasn't curled up in a corner, crying her little eyes out.

    As it was, Tamsin simply stared out of the thick plated windows, pondering on the reality she now knew, and whether it was really that different to that which she had been brought up in. In truth, the young woman doubted that anything much had changed - not suddenly at least. She had been on the road to this place for many years now, and as a result, this seemingly gargantuan transition was at least manageable. Of course, much of her still missed her home and family, but she had made the decision to leave that mundane life behind - in favour of what would most probably be a very short one here.

    Not long after these thoughts were crossing her mind, a voice cut through on the intercom. That would take some getting used to as well. Tamsin jumped slightly as the noise suddenly sounded, though thankfully she was soon composed again. It took her only a moment to start moving towards the room, walking at a relatively brisk pace, feeling that running would probably seem a bit too enthusiastic - and dawdling would just be rude. So, she was conservative - as always. Whether that was a weakness or a strength, it was hard to say, not that it really mattered all that much.

    Soon enough, after just about managing not to get lost on her way, the fiery haired girl arrived. She offered a curt, respectful nod to the man behind all this change, and a brief glance to the other in the room, trying to at least be slightly friendly, even if that didn't come too easily just now.

    She took her seat, biting her lip slightly - thinking she was hiding her nervousness, though this little action managed to sneak through her defences.
  3. Mei stared out the massive transparent panel running along one side of the corridor, gazing deeply into the pitch darkness of the void

    outside, more vast and empty than the clearest night sky but devoid of any of the familiar constellations or a moon. She had never seen anything that made her feel so small and alone. That was saying something, since she had spent a great deal of time in zones deep below the ocean where the sun barely reached. The darkness and chilling temperatures there had never bothered her the way the sight of this abyss did now. Even those lightless depths were filled with landscapes and life, but this emptyness was completely without any signs of movement or points of reference. The space that surrounded the station unnerved her in a way that diving to the ocean floor never had. The space outside made her feel a different kind of cold, deep down in the pit of her stomach where she had only ever felt profound fear and loneliness. It was terrifying, and somehow it just seemed... wrong.

    Suddenly, a loud noise filled the corridor, startling her and causing her to hunch down as her eyes, wide with shock, darted around

    wildly in search of its source. It took her a few seconds to realize that the sound was a voice, louder than any she had ever heard, that was actually speaking words. She couldn't make out their meaning exactly, but she could tell the voice belonged to a man and that it seemed to be coming from everywhere at once. His curt and demanding tone suggested he wanted something. It was similar to the way her former captors had spoken to her when they tried to get her to do something or go along with their inscrutable plans. Most times, if she didn't do as they asked she was met with some form of punishment. She shivered slightly, remembering the cruelties she had suffered at the hands of those white-coated monsters. Mei would never forget what they had done to her, but she had also made sure that they would never hurt her or anyone else ever again.

    The voice went away after a moment, and Mei was left standing in the once again silent corridor, puzzled and wondering what exactly it meant. She still wasn't sure where it had come from, and so she opened up her mouth and released a series of piercing squeaks and shrieks, hoping her inherent sonar sense would reveal if anyone was nearby. After a few seconds, the signal was reflected back to her as it resonated along the walls of the corridor and finally made its way back to her ears. The sound image that it formed in her mind showed that the nearest group of people on the station was located a fair distance away in a large room at the end of the corridor. Not wanting to waste any time and her curiosity now piqued by this new discovery, she took off down the corridor to find the source of the blips she had seen. She was still wary of the other people who populated the station; many of them wore white coats and looked at her in the same strange way her tormentors had. Still, she hoped the ones in the room to which she was heading wouldn't try to hurt her and might even help her figure out why she had been brought to this odd, unfamiliar place.

    As she came to the end of the corridor, Mei stopped to stare at the cavernous space that opened up before her. It was many times

    larger than the corridor, and it also had a series of windows that looked out into the void outside. Three people sat at a table located in a open area a short distance away from her. The only one among them she knew was the strange man who had found her and brought her here. Besides him there was a young man and a girl she had never seen before.

    Blinking leerily, she slowly made her way over to the table. Discerning that she was meant to take a seat like the rest of them, Mei

    approached one of the chairs that surrounded the table. As she took hold of it with her hand, the chair slipped out of her grasp and began rapidly turning in circles around its base. She jumped back, surprised by this strange moving seat. Watching its revolutions as they gradually slowed and the chair came to a stop, she cautiously reached out with one finger and jabbed at the chair, sending it spinning once more. This time she didn't retreat, but instead hopped up onto the chair and rode it as it reeled round and round. Once it came to a stop, she looked over at the others at the table and blinked once before staring at them blankly for a brief moment. Then, a smile of pure, childish delight broke across her face, revealing the sharp points of her teeth and her pleasure with this newfound group of people and their highly enjoyable furniture.
  4. Conundrum stared blankly at Mei, for a few brief moments, seemingly unperturbed by her actions. Nor did he seem to be endeared by her childish display of glee – he had caught dozens of Bastion members using the swivel chairs as something to ride on. One more heroine spinning round and round on the chair was hardly going to make much a difference, so he reasoned. Marsh, on the other hand, gave her a rather perplexed look, one of bemusement mixed with a strain of annoyance. It was only natural, considering how much he wanted to get on with the task at hand – it was in his personality, deep-set and unchangeable.

    “Aren’t the others coming?” Questioned John, tearing his attention from the amphibian before him. He was impatient, almost frustratingly so – that the two hadn’t gotten there as fast as he had had him miffed somewhat, prompting a look of further annoyance on his face when fellow members did not show up alongside the three and their superior.
    “Their presences will likely not be needed for the time being,” Conundrum answered, his tone and demeanour never wavering from painfully neutral, “Even if my senses tell me this will not be the case in the future.”
    Upon this cue, a hologram appeared behind Conundrum, one hand clasped behind his back, as the other pointed out the parts of the images that needed to be seen.

    “Azuris Town. Coastal town. High temperatures, sunny, some rainfall in autumn and winter months. Sensors have picked up on alien craft landing here.”
    Conundrum, utilising a telescopic pointer, pointed to the coordinates at which the robots had crash-landed. The image zoomed in revealing a closer map of the region, a red dot marking the spot where the landing had taken place. “The area is not by the sea, but the river running through it is situated nearby. These appear to be simple, rudimentary constructs. If you need to, throw them into the river – the water will take care of the rest.”
    “But sir, don’t we need to examine them?”
    “Belonas Scout drones, a popular choice among many militaries for testing power. Cheap, disposable, runs on just about any energy source in the universe. Not even the La-Keds can resist using them.”

    Conundrum, receiving no further interruptions from Olympian’s grandson, continued with his explanation, pointer and all. A picture of the place where the drones had landed was shown, a still of the chaos they were causing. Few casualties had been reported, but wanton destruction and the ineffectiveness of bullets had been recorded. One of the drones in the picture was highlighted, its outline in a stark light blue, making it stand out.
    “These are your enemies. Don’t get hit by their beams – it singes through thin, non-sentient items, and hits any sentient life like a shotgun blast at point blank. I don’t need to tell you that they’re deadly if you let your guard down. Any questions?”
  5. Maybe she shouldn't have stared, but Tamsin had human weaknesses, as much as anyone else. Mei was unique, at least to Tamsin. Presumably the amphibian female had relatives, whether they knew of her or not, there must be some world somewhere, be it on earth or beyond, there must be others similar to the girl. Of course, there was always the possibility that the girl had a similar background to herself, and as such did not have the others of her species waiting in the wings somewhere. Whatever the case was for any of them, it really didn't matter. They were what they were, and where they came from really didn't matter. Was it not said that the journey ahead was the important bit of life? Yes, that had to be true. If the past really mattered alot, then Tamsin was fairly certain she was damned for her stupidity.

    Still, Tamsin continued to watch the amphibian woman, surprised by her fascination with the chair. It wasn't exactly a rare item. Of course, a few years ago the red haired young woman would have held just as much enjoyment in spinning around in one, but the years had passed, she was no longer a child. She did not judge Mei for her frivolity, simply found it odd, and as such, felt the need to just check, "Are you alright?" Maybe there was some deep seated issue that had caused her to regress back to her childhood. Outlandish, of course, but Tamsin was often very good at imagining truly catastrophic scenarios where they were certainly not needed.

    All this was done in a hush, as listening to Conundrum was the first task on anyones mind. Tamsin didn't feel the need to say as much as a certain someone seated nearby. He was clearly going to be the leader of the group. His heart was entirely focused on justice, it seemed, and he had the confident to show it. So, as the conversation between the two males panned out, Tamsin simply listened, and eventually replied with a "No, Sir." She was a bit flabbergasted by it all, of course, but there was little that could be said to allay her fears, or even make her understand the situation on the ground. That could only be figured out by experience, which she would hopefully gain, rather than being brutally killed.
  6. Mei stared back at the others as they stared at her, not sure what the problem was. Still crouched on the swiveling chair, she looked back and forth between the other three people, unable to interpret the reason for their puzzled and slightly irked expressions. The older man seemed the least bothered with her, so she supposed everything was fine since he seemed to be in charge in this place. The younger two appeared respectively angered and baffled, the male looking the most upset, while the female just looked confused and a little concerned.

    The young woman spoke to Mei with an even, compassionate voice. Mei couldn't exactly understand what she was saying, but it didn't make her feel threatened. She concluded that the girl was asking her something. Feeling compelled to answer, she tried to reproduce part of what had ben said to her, carefully sounding out the words. "Alllllllllllll... right."

    The older man began talking, apparently addressing all of them at once. A large, bright image was suddenly projected from the table. Mei chirped in surprise and stared raptly at the hologram, in awe of what to her was a wondrous and unusual spectacle. In the image she could see a small town situated somewhere on the coast, the waters looking warm, inviting, and crystalline blue. She instantly wanted to be there, even as the man was explaining the dangers that awaited them. Mei remained oblivious to his warnings as the image focused in on a blinking red dot. Even though she couldn't understand what it represented, seeing it made her feel uneasy. More images followed: a town in ruins, people running everywhere, their faces frozen in expressions of fear and desperation, fleeing from something. Then she saw a highlighted image of a large black form, its single red eye glowing balefully. Seeing the dark creature singled out like that made everything clear to her. It was the cause of the destruction from the other images. She hissed menacingly at it, only one thought about it standing out in her mind.

  7. Conundrum was still unfazed by Mei’s actions, having seen far more unusual beings and actions in his travels, and in the watchtower alone. He did, however, arch an eyebrow upon her hissing at the screen, though this was more a subtle hint for her to calm down, as opposed to some sort of hostility. This look was swiftly wiped from his face, the centuries-old leader having better things to do than chide his fledgling heroes for instinctive reactions. He could have scolded John for displaying some degree of irritance, but that was hardly the biggest concern at that point in time.

    “You will all be transported to the area containing the robots. I will designate no leader in this mission, as this will be one to prove yourself to me, if you wish to lead any future battles. Be on guard – I can teleport you into the area, but the energy signature released by your sudden materialisation will be more than enough to attract the attention of any foes. And, as far as possible, please try not to harm any policemen or soldiers. They’re only doing their job.”
    With this explanation and conclusion to the briefing, a holographic keyboard was pulled from seemingly nowhere by Conundrum, who then proceeded to single-handedly type out the coordinates to the location, his hand and fingers moving faster than could possibly be natural.

    Then, in a flash of Huon energy, the three-strong party dissipated into the air, their atoms transcending time and space, defying the void, and reappearing in the designated spot – all in less time than any human instrument could ever measure. That was the gift of a Falligreyan – a race who had been known as the Continuum Commanders, until their war with the La-Keds, the other mightiest civilisation in the universe. They had the gift off knowledge, enough knowledge to burn up a lower species, should they ever even try to absorb just one Falligreyan’s knowledge. And it was the entire planet’s combined efforts that created their space-time continuum-manipulating machines and abilities.

    Of course, that was all in the past now.

    The scene was just like in the still – if not worse. Women and children ran for cover, men were torn between fight and flight, and bullets only seemed a way to get the enemy’s attention. The situation seemed hopeless, and the appearance of what were viewed as costumed vigilantes did not make the situation any better. People were tempted to boo them, even – but right now, they had bigger problems to worry about.
    “All right, plans, what do we do about plans… Oh, I know! I’ll do that thing. It’s like a plan, but with more greatness. Oh, what’s it called… Improvisation, yes, that’s it. Look out robots, I’m improvising! Paragon, if you could soften the metal enough for me to punch through or enough to discombobulate them, that’d be swell. Mei! You… Well, do whatever it is you do. There’s a river over there. Freshwater, if it matters.”
  8. The sensation of being reconstructed on an atomic level was not odd, mainly because it was so unfamilar and foreign that it happened on a level at which Tamsin could not register. It transcended all known feelings, and so it seemed to happen in a blink of an eye, though she supposed it was more than possible that somewhere in between the slamming back together of her particles, any amount of time could have passed. For all she knew, her atoms had been flung into the furthest corners of time and space, and been apart from one another for centuries before coming back to unite again. It was an unlikely scenario, but certainly no less plausible than anything else that had happened in the last few years.

    Of course, Tamsin did not think about this once she arrived at the scene. She had only one thing on her mind, and that was ensuring the safety of her comrades, as well as those caught up in this mess. They were innocent, and it wasn't fair that these things were targeting them for seemingly no reason. Tamsin had never understood violence, and although it was now written into her destiny, she doubted she ever would. It was senseless and cruel on any level, though it seemed that this scenario just about took the biscuit.

    Watching the horrific scene unfold, Tamsin almost forgot that it was real and she was one of the only three that could help, but thankfully she did catch herself back into reality quickly enough to hear John speak. It appeared he had designated himself commander of this little escapade, and she was extremely thankful for it. He was the only one that seemed to really have embraced what he was, and he certainly seemed to have leadership qualities, even if he was a little off the wall in places. Still, Tamsin respected him, as she did everyone, and so responded, "I'll do my best."

    She had not fought before, and had little training, but with luck it would be enough to see them through. Paragon moved off, placing herself within range of the metal constructs, soon releasing as much firepower as she could muster. The heat she generated was enough to begin melting the metal, but unfortunately the precision was severely lacking. She tended to hit great swathes of the machines, rather than pinpointing one spot. Of course, it was better than nothing, and as she continued with her assault, it seemed to be doing something.

    As the three vigilantes began to attract attention, Tamsin was also able to deflect some of the attacks that came their way, throwing up forcefields here and there, managing to do this much more easily than she did the attacks. She was far more suited to protecting civilians than she was at destroying the bad guys.
  9. I'm bulletproof.
    Nothin' to Lose.
    Fire away. Fire Away.

    Cody bobbed his body back and forth, hitting the dummy in time with the music blaring through his earbuds. He liked the song. He was titanium. As well as iron, silver, copper, nickel, and all the other things he'd eaten over the years. He was pretty glad the watchtower had this sparring room to practice in, and he was especially greatful for the dummy. He hadn't yet figured out how to not hit things like they were being beaten with a sledgehammer, so he preferred hitting something that wasn't alive and that could take his punches.

    You shoot me down
    But I'm a bomb.
    I am Titanium!

    As the last note played in his ear he made one final strike - a haymaker punch that pulled the leather and foam dummy straight out of the heavy bolts that fastened it to the floor. The dummy flew across the room and smacked into the side wall with a resounding SMACK! He cringed. Oops. That had to have been the third time he'd broken the poor dummy. He was really glad that wasn't a person. Cody looked around, saw he was alone in th sparing room, and slowly goose-stepped out.

    He went through the kitchen, checking his special cabinet where he kept the iron bars he ate in place of candy. He'd gotten strange looks from just about everyone on the day they were asked what foods should be brought there, and he had said steel bars. He knew now that all the metal he ate gave him his powers, so he needed it. Plus, he'd come to really like the taste.

    Unfortunately, he was out of metal. Well, out of that kind of metal. Instead he grabbed a soda, drinking about half of it with one gulp, then biting the top off. He looked around. Ordinarily, someone would have told him not to do that because of the annoying sound crunching aluminum made, but the place looked deserted.

    After a few wrong turns, Cody found his way to the briefing room. This place was too damn big. It took forever to find a room he normally liked to avoid. Cody thought being a superhero was cool, but didn't know if he deserved that title yet. Not until he had better control of his strength.

    "Hey, Conundrum!" he called out. "When are you going back to Earth? I'm all out of bars!"

    He stopped, however, when he saw the image displayed on the big viewscreen. "What'd I miss?"
  10. Maxine had made it just in time to see a flash of light overtake the room that she was walking to. She immediately shielded her eyes from the rays, but as soon as her arms had lifted to protect herself, the light had faded away. When she entered the nearly empty room, her attention was immediately captured by the large screen in the center. She had assumed that the rest of her squad was transported there, but she wasn't sure how to get there herself.

    "Hmmm.." A light hum from Maxine was all that filled the silent room when she stepped through the open door. She was disappointed in herself for being late, but more hurt that she was left in the first place. An emergency isn't expected, or else it would hardly be given it's moniker. If Maxine knew that her specific squad would be sent down, she wouldn't have been training so intensively in her room. And when she tried to stretch her body to new limits, it usually took awhile to unwind herself from the twists and knots that her body had formed during her training. And that was if she had the sense to take her time.

    Hearing the loud announcement through the speakers next to her had shaken her up, and in her hurry to get there at a reasonable time, her body had been pulled and wrapped into an even bigger mess. And since she was smart enough to practice in her own room, she had no one around to help her. Needless to say, it took a few deep breaths and inappropriate sounding grunts for Maxine to free herself from the warm slabs of elongated skin that went limp from fatigue. And now that she was finally there and ready, she was apparently too late.


    Maxine's square, short nails slowly tapped on a table in the room while she rigidly sat in a nearby chair. It was her fault for getting so knotted up when the squad was on stand by, but she still felt terrible about being left. Surely this couldn't have been the end of her superhero career? 'Kicked out of the group for being a few minutes late'. The thought of coming home disgraced made Maxine shiver.

    "When are you going back to Earth? I'm all out of bars!"

    Upon hearing someone approach the meeting room, Maxine immediately perked up. Maybe she wasn't the only one that was left behind?

    "What'd I miss?"

    The tall, silver haired male strutted into the large room before he directed his attention to the large screen before him, quite like what Maxine did when she first entered. The lost look on his face had disheartened Maxine, but she wasn't going to lose hope now. If two members were left behind, surely that would be reason enough to teleport again. So with a watchful eye, Maxine stared quietly at her squad-mate in her small corner, waiting for something to happen.
  11. Mei's first instinct was to shield her eyes from the blinding flash of light, but in an instant it was gone and she was confronted with surroundings that were wholly new and unexpected. Her senses were assaulted on all sides by noises, sights, and movements that caught her completely off guard. She could smell smoke and blood in the air, and screams and cries of anguish seemed to be coming from all around her. Overwhelmed, she crouched low to the ground, covering her head with both of her webbed hands, bracing herself for a hit from whatever terrible thing was the cause of all this. Once several seconds had passed and she was still unhurt, Mei looked up from where she was to try and figure out what was happening.

    It was hard to determine exactly what was going on at first, but she gradually began to realize that she was now at the place she had just been shown in the hologram. The scenes of slaughter and destruction all around her were proof enough of that. It suddenly dawned on her that would mean the black figures would be here as well, a prospect that both frightened her and filled her with a desire to tear them apart. An explosion erupted somewhere that sounded not too far away, and so she took off in that direction, racing over the devastated streets of the small town with both hands and feet, leaping over wrecked cars and other pieces of debris that were in her way. The others who had been transported with her were nowhere to be seen, but she could hear what sounded like fighting as she ran through a series of cross-streets and intersections. They could take care of themselves as far as she was concerned. All she cared about at that moment was finding one of the black things and making it pay for its part in this chaos.

    The smell of salt in the air grew stronger, letting her know she was getting closer to the water's edge. Bounding over a short section of a wall, she found herself looking out over a small marina filled with leisure ships and a few fishing boats. People were swarming over the docks trying to get out on the water and away from the carnage that was taking place in the town behind them. Just as one boat began to pull out to sea, a blazing red beam pierced its side and caused the front half of the ship to explode in a shower of flame and shattered fiberglass.

    Mei whipped her head around to see the direction the beam had come from. There, at the edge of the marina complex, stood one of the terrible black creatures, its single scarlet eye gazing at the wreckage of the ship as it slowly sank below the surface. Mei hissed furiously at the dark form and then bounded towards it, once again running on all fours. She cleared a remarkable distance in a short time, sending a group of seagulls screeching into flight as she dashed past where they were pecking around near the sidewalk. The dreadful machine trained its optic sensor on Mei, keeping track of her as she came nearer and nearer. It did not immediately take action to stop her, however, and remained motionless as she approached, seemingly waiting and calculating what her first move would be.

    She was a few yards away when she leapt into the air straight from her run, launching herself directly at the robot's head. She clawed fiercely at its featureless face, a guttural growl rising from deep within her throat as she stared straight into the red eye that enraged her so much. Mostly unfazed despite the intensity of her assault, the automaton slowly reached up with one hand and pried her from its head. It then hurled her back across the marina, her body arcing through the air before splashing into the water out beyond the ships and the panicked crowd of people trying to escape.

    Somewhat stunned from being thrown but relieved to be in her natural element, Mei felt reinvigorated and strengthened by the seawater in which she was now immersed. Her legs kicked as one, propelling her into a dive that moved her out of the way just in time to avoid another red beam that cut through the waves above her, vaporizing the the water at the surface and generating a blast of steam whose heat she could feel even as she swam away. She darted swiftly and gracefully through the water just below the surface, making her way back towards the docks. As she reached a wooden pier between two abandoned yachts, she emerged with a burst of speed that sent her springing through the air. She landed on the pier, splattering its planks with the salt spray that followed in her wake, and glared toward the machine as it stalked slowly into the marina.

    Her dark eyes dilated to their limit, Mei's gaze radiated with seething anger and her contempt for the machine. It apparently wanted a fight, and she was more than up to it, even if it wouldn't be easy. That just meant she could have more fun taking her time to tear it to pieces. Once she was done, the wretched monstrosity would wish it had never laid its filthy burning eye on her to begin with, even if it meant she would have to die with it.
  12. Not seeming to even acknowledge the two youths at first, Continuum Conundrum simply stared at his pocket watch, seeming to see something in it that only he could. What it was a mystery to all but him – when asked, he always said it was a relic of home, something that a being on a lesser level of existence would not be able to comprehend it. He said that it even turned his own people mad, at times – thus, it was why he never stared at it for more than a minute, precisely. After gazing at the face of it for exactly forty-two seconds and twenty-four milliseconds, he turned slowly to his juniors – in both rank and age.

    “Late. Both of you. This sort of thing I expect from Alloy, but you I expected better of you, Miss Hill.”
    When the look of disappointment settled itself upon Conundrum’s face, it was difficult to tell whether it was a mock expression, or whether he was genuinely disappointed in Maxine. Irrespective of his stance on the matter, they had arrived, and as he was the sole senior member in the room at that point in time, it was his duty to beam them down. He dearly wished that Stephen Fletch would make an appearance – the boy needed real combat experience. He knew how excessive power led to arrogance – he’d seen it before, and he needed him to see just how the world really was.
    “Beaming down in three… two… one…”
    Without even waiting for a response, he beamed the two to Earth, after which he resumed observation of the pocket watch.


    Accelerating to thirty miles an hour, Marsh sped by a robot, hitting it straight in the ‘face’ with a lead pipe he had picked up. Given that he had phenomenal strength, was running at a constant speed only matched by the fastest of sprinters, and that it was a lead pipe, the combination would prove quite deadly for the ones softened by Paragon’s heat. And, though it took considerable effort, the visual sensor was destroyed, and its head was shorn not-so-cleanly in two. Not stopping to catch his breath or stop, he continued this process, inefficient and dangerous as it was.

    Though feeling confident, this was short-lived – a metal fist to the gut soon showed this. Sent flying backwards from the blow, Marsh only barely managed to land on his feet, his hyper-agility powers the deciding factor in the landing. Though winded, he was a little less headstrong, now knowing to approach with more caution. Had he not been so close, there was no telling what could have been damaged – in essence, he was being thrown by the enemy, though with their fist, not their hand. No respiratory organs had been damaged, and at most, all he suffered were a few scrapes and a nasty bruise, along with the winding.
    Though, the glowing eye preparing to fire at the momentarily-incapacitated boy hero was certainly not a barcode scanner scanning, and if he didn’t move soon, he guessed he was going to have to wave goodbye to a promising career in heroism prematurely.
  13. The Huon energy beam was a whole new level of weird. Cody liked how it tickled, but was never comfortable to change into full metal before getting beamed. He was worried about possible electrocution if he tried that. When he looked around next, all he could see was chaos on a sleepy port community. There were giant black robots of death firing some kind of energy rays from their eyes. They were big, too, bigger than him. They didn't scare Cody, though; they excited him. The alien robots reminded him of the sparring dummies back at the watchtower and he realized he didn't have to hold back. He could just let 'em have it. And he intended to.

    He looked at Maxine and grinned like a lunatic. "Okay, the beaming's now the second coolest thing I've ever seen. This definitely takes the first."

    Cody flexed every one of his muscles until all the metal he absorbed - the matter that mysteriously disappeared whenever he didn't need it - came to the surface, coating his skin in a fine sheen of polished steel. His casual clothes remained unchanged, but he never really thought he needed some silly tights. The fact that he was living metal made him stand out plenty.

    Alloy walked cooly and calmly into the fray of robots and fellow superheroes. Olympian's dilemma quickly caught his attention. Not really knowing what to do, he sprang into action with probably the stupidest idea he could have thought of: using himself as a human shield. He leaped in front of Olympian just in time for the robot's energy blast to hit him square in the chest. Alloy spread his chest out in true superhero fashion, and only stayed standing through shear will. The pain was greater than anything he'd experienced in his life. So much heat, so much power, all threatening to borrow straight through him. The robot eventually ceased its blast, and Alloy doubled over and dropped to his knees. His t-shirt had a hole burned clean through it and his iron chest was glowing yellow hot.

    "Ow!" he said. Then the full pain started to come to him. "Ow! OW! OW!!!!"

    The robot stood there a moment, apparently unsure of what to do next. Alloy was injured, but the thing was used to seeing its opponents dead, especially after a blast like that. But Alloy wasn't confused about his next move. This thing had pissed him off.

    He gave the robot a powerful right hook. Its head twisted at a ninty degree angle so that it was facing sideways. He couldn't see any damage on the machine's face, but when it tried to turn its head back around, there came a set of whirring and crunching sounds, and the head wouldn't budge. Alloy smirked.

    "What's amatter? You stuck?" he asked it. He grabbed the robot's head and pushed it away with his foot on its chest. The head ripped off with little effort. The robot body flailed for a little while, then fell to the ground. He held the robot's head and looked down at Olympian. "You owe me a pizza, man."

    Suddenly two more beams of red light struck Alloy. He put up his arms to block the blasts, the heat quickly making the metal glow. The force of the beams were so great he started to slide backwards. His arms were dripping molten metal, and his body was trying to replace what was being lost just as quickly. This time the robots weren't stopping. They kept their red eyes trained on him as they bombarded him. The pain started sapping his strength and he fell to his knees. He couldn't hold the beams off forever.

    "Screw the pizza! Repay me now!" He yelled at Olympian.
  14. Tamsin did her best to monitor the entire battlefield, knowing that her strengths did not lie in focus, and so it made sense for her to be broad in her line of sight. Keeping an eye on her comrades, she continued to bludgeon away with her flames, often backing off only just in time for Olympian to make his rather dangerous move. Although he was relatively effective, she did note to herself that it probably wouldn't be long until the plan backfired.

    She was right. Paragon couldn't help but flinch as she watched him being thrown like a ragdoll. It wasn't a pretty sight, and neither was the subsequent glow of the preparation of the beam. As this was occurring, she noticed the addition of another team member, someone she had not met before. And once again, she winced as the pulverising beam hit him. Ouch.

    Tamsin sprinted towards the two of them - not nearly as fast as Olympian, or even very quick at all - desperate to offer what aid she could. It was during this run that Alloy first appeared to be triumphing over the robots, though he was swiftly put back in his place. Tamsin intervened without a thought, putting as much energy as she dared into blocking the two energy beams with one of her mentally generated shields. It would probably not hold for long, which was why she shouted at Olympian with a huge amount of urgency. "Get him to cover!"

    By now, she was almost upon them, maintaining the shield, despite the amount of effort it consumed. It was obvious that Alloy could not take much of a beating, and so she was determined that he would be well out of the way before the shield dropped. Of course, Tamsin then planned to get him as patched up as was possible, though in the heat of this battle she wasn't entirely sure how well she would be able to focus.
  15. “Like hell I owe you a pizza. You get a Subway, tops.”
    The retort was delivered in true superhero-witty-phrase fashion, in the sense that an ally knew he was just having a joke, and should it have been delivered to a villain, it would likely be more mocking. Utilising his superior speed, Olympian dodged yet more beams focussed on him, even going so far as to front-flip over one. However, this display of athleticism was short-lived, as he quickly saw that more urgent matters had to be attended to – namely, Alloy being pressured by two drones, each one focussing their beams on him.

    Olympian feared the worst, but Paragon’s shields put his mind at rest – momentarily, anyhow. It was fairly obvious that she was not able to hold her ground much longer, and that something would have to be done. Unfortunately, he could not follow the implied suggestion that he pick up Alloy and run with him – the boy was made of metal, and though Olympian possessed phenomenal strength, it was still human-level strength. And metal was, by and large, heavy. He had to think of something, something to give him time to drag Alloy away – if not carry or throw him, due to his weight.

    Picking up another metal pipe as he gathered speed, Olympian ran full-pelt at one of the drones, unleashing a brutal double-handed swing honed by his sporadic bouts of playing cricket with his grandfather. Though the attack was not nearly strong enough to ‘decapitate’ his foe, it still had force sufficient enough to knock his foe’s aim off, and temporarily scramble its circuitry. Desperate beeping and whirring came from the machine as it tried to recalibrate, giving Olympian enough time to leap into the air, his enhaced agility showing as he leapt from the wall to an even greater height, bringing the pipe crashing down upon the other robot in due course.

    With both drones now temporarily out of the picture, Olympian began dragging Alloy. Though cumbersome, he still managed to move him, but the process was slow, tedious, and ultimately not going to work. He was going to have to play decoy, much as he hated to admit it – though, he couldn’t rely on Astonishman. Powerful as his fellow team member was, it seemed like one of his most prominent traits, that he never showed up when needed. Regardless of whether he entered the fray or not, Olympian was going to have to take matters into his own hands.
    “Listen bud, I don’t really like dragging you, but you’re not really in any state to walk. Are you?”
    To be fair on him, it was a spur-of-the-moment decision, but that was really no excuse for not even saying he was going to haul him along.
  16. Out of danger, at least temporarily, Alloy took a brief moment to look at his arms. They were glowing orange, and burned like crazy, but they were otherwise fine. He grunted, then slowly pulled himself up to his feet. He couldn't keep this up being made out of steel. He needed something else. Something stronger.

    "I think I'm good," he told Olympian. He held up his still partially molten arms. "Don't think I'm getting out of the game now. Coach just put me in. I just need something stronger..."

    Alloy looked around until he found the discarded robot body. The skin on his arms had been severely burned by the energy blasts. That was the bad news. The good news was that without his skin barrier he could absorb matter without having to eat it. He put his arms on the robot's chest and the plate was pulled into his body like it was being vacuumed up. His fists and forearms were now made of the strong black metal.

    "Alright! Now we're playing fair!" he yelled out as he pulled a piece of shoulder armor off of the robot and started nonchalantly munching on it. "Worth all that hurt, I think. Now let's see how these new hands hit."

    He leaped over Olympian at a robot that had been making its way behind them. With one powerful uppercut its head flew clean off. Another robot trained its eyebeam on him and fired. Alloy put up his new black metal and this time felt only a little heat. Apparently their armor was made strong enough so that the robots couldn't accidentally hurt each other. Using his one arm as a shield, he jumped up and sent his other fist crashing into the robot's head like a hammer. The robot's head sank in like it was a pressed button, and there was a sudden burst of sparks and fire as its heat beam incinerated its own inner workings. The robot seized up and fell over.

    "Oh yeah!" Alloy grinned. "This definitely works."

    Another heat beam fired into his still-steel back, shortly followed by another one shooting into his chest. He put up his new arms to deflect the beams. His arms may be tough enough now, but the rest of him was still weaker steel. Alloy ducked, and the robots blasted each other. They were unfazed, however, and soon retrained their eyes on Alloy.

    "Come on, guys!" he said to the unfeeling machines. "I don't have time to eat you and beat you."
  17. Adonis would never have compared to the mass of muscle and spandex that was hard at work on the moon. It was neither a god, nor a demigod that stood. But he wasn't quite much a punk with powers. Maybe he couldn't lift a tank, but he could surely punch one into smithereens with the force of a warhead, sending the chunks off at the speed of sound, he himself bolting after them at twice the speed without a sweat, the background gunfire of some third world tyrant's henchmen failing to provide so much as a tickle.

    Unlike the others, he had been traversing the solar system on some other great mission. He'd desired to take some time out, maybe attempt to find the upper limits of how long he could hold his breath in space, or clock his speeds to see if he was getting faster, the locomotion of this champion seeming to gather quickly. But within the last five days, he had been searching the moon on rumors of an old martian colony hidden under an aura of negation: In english, a cloaking field. But the most that would usually come was an occasional individual creature being let loose upon him that he'd have to wrestle every now and then. But he had to wonder where such cosmic critters came from? Of course, the ship that would appear, dropping off the invaders was certainly not a pleasing sight.

    In fact, it looked to be a task for Astonishman.

    The amiable strongman was off the lunar surface within moments. Shortly after, a small metal eye poked itself out, before going back below, the things on the moon being neutral in terms of the intents and purposes of the invaders.

    Without the presence of an atmosphere to slow him down to the Supersonic ranges of speed, Astonishman was freely traveling in a straight line towards his home planet, where he lived also as his other self: Stephen Fletch. Now, no one quite realized Astonishman was not a 20-something and really a 15 year old who got cool superpowers from a pair of magic wristbands. No, they pegged him for some cartoonist, or maybe a newspaper journalist. And thank the heavens they decided not to question it, at least for now...

    Of course, given the speed at which the bullet-man was traveling, coupled with the degree of enhanced durability and generated force from his travel speed, he tore straight through something of steel, likely either a satellite, or perhaps the craft he could vaguely see from the moon, poking a couple of holes through it and hurdling down towards Earth. As soon as he re-entered the atmosphere, he steadied himself, adjusting himself from previous velocity, and began to fly downwards, descending from Mach 7 downwards towards Mach 2 or 3, searching out for the others already deployed.

    "Fooey!" He cursed under his breath, and emitting a low, yet manly voice more suited to a stereotypical fellow from some children's programming. "I'd better let the big man know I deserted my post. Ah, well. If there are any other invasion ships coming in, we'll handle them as they come…"

    With that, the high-speed atlas was already using his wristcomm device to get in touch with the place he referred to as 'the cuckoo's nest of crimefighting.'

    "Astonishman here." He announced. "Figured you lot could use some extra air support. Moon-watch got dull, so we have no eyes in the sky, repeat. No eyes in the sky. Updating my rolex to the coordinates, and pronto. It's going to be a Miiiiraculous~ Day…"


    With the coordinates recorded, Astonishman found himself in Azuris, spotting a whole platoon of interstellar fiends attempting to death-ray an entire several blocks.

    "This is Astonishman."

    Still moving, the humanoid form wrapped in a fiery red aura began to charge up for a crowd clearing move. Within seconds, the man found himself moving down, and crashing into the whole lot of steel monsters, a crater forming at a street intersection as robot and car alike were sent flying several feet, Astonishman rising from the crater, the red aura exploding into a harmless, large wind gale of sheer force as Stephen's other body relaxed its tensed muscles.

    "Did I ever mention I LOVED bowling? You guys should try it. There are these whole legions of mooks standing around on some of the streets. I think some of them realize there are strength in numbers. The poor things…"
  18. And she had thought crazy, death ray wielding robots were as bizarre as it got. Now Alloy was becoming one with the machines, in body if not in mind, and not long after...well, someone with a distinct lack of respect for public property turned up. Tamsin wondered if it was just a macho thing, or perhaps that particularly destructive entrance really was only intended to help out. Either way, she felt bad for the poor guys who were going to have to deal with the clean up operation - not to mention whoever was going to pay for it.

    Of course, she soon had to push those thoughts aside - just in time to throw herself out of the path of a beam, landing awkwardly on her shoulder. Maybe in private she was capable of finesse, but in high stress situations, Tamsin kind of started to fall apart. It was hardly appropriate to be so shy and frightened, but it was something that could be overcome in time - hopefully. For now, she just did her best to stay out of the way of the others, and help out where she could.

    Speaking of helping out, Tamsin made a point of burning out the beams generator, though she was fairly certain that soon she'd need to stop to regrow the skin and muscle around her fingertips. Although the adrenaline of the battle had kept her from feeling the pain of it, her fingertips had been blistering and then all but falling off. She was now almost down to the muscle, and although she was capable of regrowing the musculature of others, her ability did not extend that far in herself. The reason for this was unclear, but it was what it was.

    So, as the clunky machine became capable only of causing damage by keeling over, Tamsin took herself to cover, hoping that the other - rather more aggressive (and let's face it. Talented) - heroes would be able to take care of themselves whilst she was out of the fight. Paragon was still on the lookout for any close calls that might require her assistance, but for the time being, her primary focus had to be herself. It was a rare occurrence, for someone who hated to be selfish, but in this case it did seem justified.
  19. Alloy looked up when he saw Astonishman make his...unorthodox approach. Secretly, he thought it was pretty cool. He wished he could make an entrance like that. He looked at his two robots and decided he'd had enough of them. He charged the one closest to him and ripped the metal breastplate off of its body. When the other robot made to fire its heat beam at him, Alloy simply stepped out of the way and allowed the robot to fry his comrad. He then threw the breastplate like a disk, taking the other robot's head off.

    Alloy leaped about fifteen feet in the air in a long jump until he was next to Astonishman. The two of them were without a doubt the strongest ones there. Alloy looked at him as someone to pit himself against: to test his strength.

    "Hey, Astonishman!" He called over the battle. "How about we make this interesting? Whoever busts the most robots wins! Loser gets victory dinner for the whole team! Looks like most of the bots you got are getting back up, and I've already trashed five - hold on - "

    A robot fired its beam at him. Alloy blocked it with his black metal, then jumped forward and grabbed his arm. He then gave a hard yank and the robot's upper body spun like a top. When it finally stopped there was a lot of sparking and whirring as the robot broke in half.

    "Make that six."