Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16551 Edited by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

@apex_predator87: Jacob dodged the slap and sat one of the men up, alive.

"I remember your code, don't worry.

The bodies left are to send a message to not spread vitriol in this city.

I prefer not to kill, but I do what is necessary.

The horrors of war taught me that.

If I revealed myself to early, it would've interfered with your work and training.

I did send the original Apex and others to your doorstep, after all, to spur you on.

I've orchestrated quite a bit of your path.

I knew the world would need Apex always, so I put events into motion years ago to ensure that.

Now that I'm here, we can finally rekindle our flame, even after decades."

After sheathing his sword and putting on his mask, he held out his hand, "Shall we?"

No Caption Provided

Avatar image for xiandra
#16552 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso:

She neither attacked or retreated; she simply stood her ground. Unexpected. This encounter was growing more interesting by the moment. Briefly, she wondered if this had become a counter-setup, and Valencia was waiting for her own forces to attack, but she quickly pushed this thought aside. If that were truly the case, there was nothing for it, now. The board was set, and all that was left was to acquit oneself well.

She cocked her head momentarily, allowing herself the luxury of admiring the strength and grace evident in her opponent's form. Then, she was in motion, springing forward with a speed that belied her armor's form. She did not go for a direct, killing thrust, but rather spun her spear in a dizzying whirlwind of strikes that aimed to batter.

It was time to see if Valencia's abilities matched her appearance.

Avatar image for human_dynamo
#16553 Posted by Human_Dynamo (90 posts) - - Show Bio

@darkchild:

The sounds of people scalping each other turned his stomach; of course he wanted it to stop. Hank didn't take the creature's hand anymore, however.

"This is the product of my pictures, huh? Alright," he took his camera and smashed it on the ground, shattering the illusion. All of his life, he was trying to save up for a new camera, further his career. The derelict places he captured from the underbelly of Gothic, those pictures were being reflected back at him now. The mistakes of the past, and his sin of turning over the very much alive carcass.

"I'm done talking to you, monster. What do you want me to do, grovel at your feet and beg for everything to be alright? I'm not some child you can manipulate. Now get out of my face before I blow yours off."

His fingers quivered on the trigger of his visor.

Avatar image for darkchild
#16554 Posted by Darkchild (42755 posts) - - Show Bio
No Caption Provided

@human_dynamo: The young man's reply brought a wide toothy grin that seemed to stretch into the darkness of the Prince Kings shadow. "You think you have the power youngling? Let's see if you have the will power as well as fire power..." Snapping his fingers his illusions were no longer just illusions, they were real. The crazed flew into frenzy dashing forward towards the young Dynamo.

Avatar image for phantomshell
#16555 Posted by Phantomshell (779 posts) - - Show Bio

His fingers quivered on the trigger of his visor.

dope

Avatar image for rosso
#16556 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra:

Curiosity (slightly) piqued, Valentina would stay, she decided, at least long enough to gauge her opponent and, if possible, find out if Grimmwald had sent her. But she was no mercenary, and she did not enjoy "the thrill of the fight." She would end it quickly if she could and, when necessary, her escape was already mapped in her mind. She steeled herself, poised with her arms out defensively, and waited.

Her composure cracked immediately. The distance between them at the start was anybody's guess, but someone wearing that much bulk shouldn't have been able to cross it as fast as it did. Valentina raised her arms to defend herself. But though her jacket was armored, its protection was largely concentrated at center mass—protection she wasn't willing to test herself that night. Xiandra's spear shredded her sleeves and cut deep.

No Caption Provided

She cracked, but did not break. The Ephemeran was fast—unexpectedly so—but still manageable for the Scarlet Shadowrunner. Her back fell against the box she'd been searching. With no ground to give she fired a teep kick, hoping to disrupt Xiandra's striking rhythm and create space for herself.

And again Rosso waited.

For good measure, raising her right arm to her face, with broad smile and flaring eyes, she ran her tongue along the wound.

Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16557 Edited by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17:

"I don't appreciate being manipulated. It's my life and I'll live it however I see fit." Apex says, not choosing to correct him that she IS the original Apex, but she knows what he meant. He meant Theron King. She doubts he sent him, but who knows.

She looks at the hand but ignores it, then grabs the man who is the only thug that remains alive. After some interrogating, she learns what she needs, "If your lying, I'll break the other one." She says to the thug.

"Break the other wha--AHHHHH!" His arm break as Apex does a simple twist and then slams a fist in the back of his head to knock him out.

Apex walks to the central computer network, then types in some commands. She gleans more information that she needs. Now she can truly stop the flow of toast masters in the city. But she needs to first address a potential problem.

Apex looks at him with hard, blue, eyes, "I've lived through war myself and I didn't let it change me into a killer. I was a killer before that and I hate killing. That's why I adopted my code, which was a recent change. If you want to rekindle what we had, then put away that sword. No more killing. Be the man I remember instead of the man you have obviously become."

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16558 Posted by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

@apex_predator87: The Sebreur sighs, the sword already in its scabbard, "Fair enough.

Me "killing" some of these men was merely a test to see how far your code changed since the war, you passed thankfully.

Even after all these years, I don't make murder a habit unless I absolutely must.

Many of the thugs I "killed" were wearing protective vests under their clothing, I paid them to work for me in this instance, and now they're going back to prison.

Let's bring the old days back."

Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16559 Posted by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17:

Him and his 'tests'. Apex takes a deep breath, "Alright, let's try it. But first, we need to do something. Follow me."

Apex leaves the manufacturing facility and heads for an office building. She grapnels to the top floor and smashes through the window. A middle aged man, but in great shape, is there and has his guards defend him but she makes short work of them. Then Apex disarms the CEO of this company of the gun he was holding.

Apex interrogates him until she gets everything she desires from him. Once she does, she knocks him out and calls the police. Then she types on his computer, accessing his files. She deletes everything about the Toast Masters. Then she uploads a virus to make sure everything on the computer is destroyed and no possible way to recover the lost data. Then Apex uses the code the man gave her to open the Safe and and she grabs the toast master schematics. She burns it all until they are crumbled pieces of ashes.

Apex looks over at Night Warden, "We're done here. Now we can talk more." She leaves the office building and lands on a nearby rooftop.

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16560 Edited by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

Jacob lands alongside her.

As much as his bright colors and patriotic costume reminds him of the old days, he needs something more contemporary, complementing his partner's dark exterior.

He clicks a button on his blade, turning it into truncheons, and the nanomesh weave of his costume shifts and expands taking on a more mysterious and frightening appearance.

"We make quite the dynamic duo you and I.

Over the years, I formed a new, clandestine superteam that watches from the shadows.

To that end, we can fight crime and rekindle the spirit of justice where we can.

What's next on our itinerary?

After, we can head to your home if you like."

Avatar image for paragonxxx
#16561 Posted by ParagonxXx (3158 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17: Wait, so Night Warden created the Justice League Alliance?

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16562 Edited by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

@paragonxxx: A new version of it in the modern day, though he was a team member of the original group. Sorry for the miscommunication. I can edit if necessary.

Avatar image for xiandra
#16563 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso:

Her Sauroid trainers would have approved of her foe's way of fighting. The reptilian hunters abhorred nothing more than energy wasted, and strove always for maximum impact from minimum expenditure. Val's counterattack, and her almost complete lack of motion aside from basic defense leading up to it, would have been the kind of maneuver they would use. Granted, one of their "kicks" would be used more to bring their powerful clawed feet into position to disembowel the target, but one worked with the weaponry one had.

Xi grunted, a sound made hollow and slightly digitized by her helmet, as the kick connected with her midsection, the force driving her back. She rolled, coming up in a defensive crouch just in time to catch Val as she licked one of the superficial wounds she had suffered. The Ephemeran was not an expert on humans, but she knew that their saliva did have have any particular healing properties; this was a taunt.

Beneath her helmet, the huntress smiled. This was a worthy foe and worthy fight, and something far more satisfying than her mission. She lunged forward, spear point first, only to then drive her weapon downward and into the floor, so that she could use it to vault forward in a kick of her own, aimed high, at her opponent's head.

Avatar image for paragonxxx
#16564 Edited by ParagonxXx (3158 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17: Thing is, I created the Justice League Alliance, so yes, please edit. Apex (Theron King) was a member of my team. Plus, if Night Warden was a member of the original group in the 1940's then your going to have to speak to @hank_galloway as he created that group from the 1940's.

Avatar image for rosso
#16565 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra: Ohh, now who's being unexpected?

Avatar image for human_dynamo
#16566 Posted by Human_Dynamo (90 posts) - - Show Bio

@darkchild:

Being held down and torn apart by the illusions-made-flesh, Hank kept his fingers at the ready. One click and he could erase a city block just by looking at it.

"You want to keep playing this game? I know your kind, demon. If you're so sure that you can tank it, then stop hiding behind all your little minions,"

He wrestled his way out of the masses, pieces of his jacket missing and slash marks digging into hihis skin. But he knew he could appeal to the monster's pride, if anything.

"If you don't, I'm just going to assume you never could to begin with."

Avatar image for rosso
#16567 Edited by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra:

The success of her strike was greater than she'd even anticipated but the huntress was built solid, more so than the assassin. Kicking her was like kicking a brick wall. This would only end when she escaped, one of them died, or the armored one lost interest. Valentina wasn't ready for her to lose interest—hence the taunt.

Xiandra charged again but this time Valentina was ready. She'd gauged her distance and the rhythm was manageable. Readying herself to change levels and pivot, she met Xiandra–

–and her vision went black. Just for a moment, and only in the right eye. As she rolled to a new distance and set she felt a thick, slow bead roll down her face, leaving a lukewarm trail. An itch just above her eyebrow. She scratched it and cringed. Okay, the time for Patty Cake was done. Her feints failed twice and it became quickly apparent that anticipating this one's movements wasn't going to come easily. She wouldn't match the Ephemeran skill for skill, and the wound over her eye risked compromising her vision the longer she fought.

But I bet I'm smarter.

Whipping the pistols from her waist, Rosso aimed one and fired several shots between head and center mass at the Ephemeran. They functioned mainly as a distraction (and to gauge the armor's durability). Meanwhile, three more shots aimed above loosened and severed a light fixture from the ceiling, threatening to bring the structure crashing down over the alien's head.

Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16568 Posted by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17:

"The night's not over yet." Apex says, liking the new look Jacob chose for himself. She turns and looks out over the city, "Do you know why I chose Gothic City over any other? This one seemed to be in the most need. I'm not the only vigilante or hero who operates in this city, but even with everyone here doing their part, we still can't keep up."

After a full night of crime fighting, regardless if he joins her in it or not, Apex goes home in her Apex Car and parks in her cave. If he tagged along, she takes her cowl off, revealing her beautiful face and long black hair, "Welcome to my home."

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16569 Posted by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

@apex_predator87: Jacob joins her, and they quell whatever miscreants cross their path.

Upon arriving to her home, Jacob also removes his cowl, stating, "Your home is magnificent, much like you.

I'm honored to fight by your side.

I'm curious as to your training regimen, why don't you show me in the morning?"

With that, Jacob tucks in for the night, and rises with the sun to meet Apex if she's around.

Avatar image for xiandra
#16570 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso:

Her attack connected, and it obviously inflicted damage, but her enemy did not go down. She was tough, this one. Xi was beginning to debate whether she would be better as a trophy, or as an ally. Both were useful, after all.

She reflexively threw up a duranium-sheathed arm to shield her face as Val opened fire on her, even though her helmet was likely the sturdiest part of her armor. For the merest of moments, she wondered if her enemy had overestimated the quality of her ordnance, for the regular lead rounds would not punch through the alien metal that protected her body, and said metal's force-absorbing properties ensured that even the impact had little effect on her.

It was then that she noticed that shot that was aimed well above her head, severing a heavy light fixture and bringing it earthward. Xi flung herself to the side in a desperate dodge, but this left her no time to disengage her spear from the floor, and she had to abandon the weapon to be pinned beneath the falling fixture. So then...skilled, tough, and clever, as well.

Rolling out of her dodge, she immediately tried to recapture the offensive momentum, charging the crimson-tressed assassin and punctuating her attack with a leap. As she descended, she activated her neurotoxin-coated wrist blade and slashed downwards in a murderous arc. This prey had proven herself too dangerous to toy with; it was time to seek to incapacitate or kill.

Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16571 Edited by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17:

No Caption Provided

As usual when Mary goes to sleep, she has nightmares about the wars she's been in, the death she's caused up close and personal. All thanks to her PTSD and when she wakes up an hour later, she is caked in sweat and screams. Her claws pop out of her hands, lethal weapons she only uses when she must.

Breathing heavily, Mary is thankful she only needs only one hour of sleep a day. She gets out of bed and puts on a black and white jumpsuit. Then she does a very intense work out for an hour, which is all she needs to maintain her incredible physique.

But, Mary doesn't train right now as she usually does. She waits until Jacob is awake. Once he is, Mary finds him. "Come, let us train together. You wanted to see my training regimen. I already worked out earlier, but we can still do combat training and hone the rest of our skills. I figured you'd want to do it together."

Mary takes him down to her cave, even showing him the secret entrance. Once in her cave, she takes him where she trains. "Technology is both a curse and a blessing. I installed holographic emitters all throughout the cave. This allows me to create almost any combat scenario I desire with an adaptable A.I. that learns by observing. Don't worry, it's not sentient. But it's very good at giving me a work out. Go on, test it. Ask the computer to create whatever you wish in order to put your skills to the test."

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16572 Posted by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

Jacob finds himself in a nearly identical situation with his PTSD as Apex, though it has gotten significantly better through the years.

He'll have to teach Apex some of the meditation techniques he uses to keep it at bay.

Jacob asks the computer to create a holographic duplicate of Apex programming it to strike first.

He cracks his knuckles,"Let the battle begin."

No Caption Provided

Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16574 Edited by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17:

No Caption Provided

Mary strokes her chin, thinking that is a rather interesting choice. The hologram of Mary extends it's claws and leaps towards Jacob with a skillful stab towards his midsection.

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16575 Edited by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

@apex_predator87: Jacob counters, attempting to redirect her claw into her head, before using it as a decapitator.

If he's lucky, he can end the fight with the hologram as quickly as it has begun.

If that doesn't work, he uses full-force super-soldier incapacitating strikes on the hologram, dodging skillfully and hitting its weak points like vital organs and joints.

Jacob constantly adapts to the holograms strategies, even trying to weaken it with screams to its ears.

Jacob waits for its next move.

Avatar image for rosso
#16576 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra: I'll hit this back ASAP tomorrow.

Avatar image for xiandra
#16577 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio
Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16578 Posted by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17:

The first attempt fails, but the second attempt succeeds. As Jacob continues to fight the hologram of Mary, it constantly adapts to his moves and learns just as he does. Something else Jacob might notice is that the hologram fights like Mary too, but not at the same skill level. But the more they fight, the more skilled the hologram becomes. As the real Mary watches from the sidelines, she crosses her arms as she is impressed by Jacob's moves. He hasn't lost his edge.

Eventually, the hologram becomes too good and when that happens, Mary hops in to aid Jacob. "At this point, I usually shut the hologram off. I never had a partner help me out, so let's see how far we can go before the the hologram beats us."

Mary extends her claws and gets ready as the hologram version of herself does the same and begins to battle the both of them.

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16579 Posted by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

@apex_predator87: Jacob suggests working in tandem with Apex, and unleashing devastating combination attacks.

Jacob further suggests that wherever Apex doesn't land a hit, Jacob steps in, and vice versa.

For every slash of claw at the hologram Apex makes, Jacob strikes whenever the simulation is left open and hopes Apex will do the same.

Jacob, in the midst of his nimble countering and blocking, waits for Mary to set up a combo.

Avatar image for phantomshell
#16580 Posted by Phantomshell (779 posts) - - Show Bio
No Caption Provided

He had jumped long and far before briefly hitting the guardrail of the complex's stairs, hands first hoping to acrobatically refuel the gymnastic vault. Looking to sail his legs between both arms in a Cat Pass only to be arrested mid-movement by a shocking surge of scrutinizing pain.

Needle like, the piercing injections shredded clothes and flesh, sending the stylish street rogue crashing down the stairs. Focused on protecting his cradled companion, sacrificing the ability to recapture his own momentum, Ishmael ricocheted around an additional spiral of floors.

There was no telling how long he had laid there. Pursuing parties having disbanded long ago as day turned to night. "Damn dude. You look like absoluuuute sh!t" a familiar voice sneered. "Glad u got my text. Help me up man. I dont think I can walk."Noah picked up the puppy and roughly scrubbed its head. "Yeah no. Besides, aint you got a bunch of ass kissers for that?" Chuckling while paying little attention to anything outside of the dog's playful antics. "They're scattered. In the wind. For now."

Noah sighed, before ultimately capitulating to the inevitable. "We're gonna have to do somethin about this guy. Arent we...."

Avatar image for xiandra
#16581 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@phantomshell:

Don't start thinking I'm finished with you yet, human.
Don't start thinking I'm finished with you yet, human.

Avatar image for phantomshell
#16582 Posted by Phantomshell (779 posts) - - Show Bio
Avatar image for emperor_von_doom
#16583 Edited by Emperor_von_Doom (3995 posts) - - Show Bio

"You have just been conscripted into the most important fight of your life, soldier!"

No response. A series of monotonous, well-oiled, creaks - the weight of the frame conquering all other noise.

"Ah, you're dead. Well, DIE ON SOMEONE ELSE'S TIME, MAGGOT!"

The hollowed-out husk of a dead man stared back at him, the corpse long eaten away by time and scavengers.

"Don't you know who I am? I am Arch-Sergeant Cull von Doom, Emperor-class Automaton, designation 744 of the Last Colossi Regiment! You stand at attention when I am talking to you, you fight when I point at the Enemy, and you die when I decide you will!"

The so-called Arch-Sergeant pulled the corpse to its feet, where it stood for about a full second before collapsing back down into a heap. Cull would have gone on to verbally abuse the ramshackle body, except his neck twinged violently. A spark or two flew out from under his eye socket.

"An honorable soldier, to the end. Rest well s-s-s-s-s-s-s-son."

He staggered out of the alleyway, blood staining his hand - the hand he had grabbed the corpse with. In fact, the body belonged to a man he had recently murdered, believing not five minutes that he was a synth of some sort - a false human trying to infiltrate American soil. The Enemy, in his mind, was close.

Closer than ever.

Avatar image for rosso
#16584 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra: The hanging light fell to the ground with an alarming crash, lightly peppering the area with debris shards...and hit no one. Valentina smirked. Despite the "failure" of her initial attacks she could hardly have imagined a better scenario. As fast (and apparently durable) as her opponent was, she could also be reckless in her haste. The instant she left her weapon unattended Rosso had set her ideal course, and the armored foe's charge only sweetened the pot.

She leapt. A telegraph. So maybe she was flustered, or angry. Or, more likely given the way she'd initiated "honorable" combat, one of those suckers who gets caught up in "battle lust." Nonetheless she was thankful for it, as it gave her a few small, but key, extra milliseconds to process the assault.

When the Ephemeran landed her blade would find nothing. Valentina had already broken into a sprint, planting herself alongside the spear and dislodging it from the floor. Wasting no time, she charged. Entering Xiandra's range with a series of jabs and high feints using her weapon—before committing herself to a low strike at the enemy's thigh in attempt to cripple her, and sliding with her dancer's grace just outside of the range of her arms.

Avatar image for xiandra
#16585 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso:

Quick.

Too quick!

Sszatch!

Her inner monologue slipped into a Sauroid dialect as she frenetically attempted to recover from her own attack's failure and throw up a suitable defense against Val's vicious counter-assault. She used the strongest points of her armor, her helmet and gauntlets, to try to block most of the blows that came at her in a whirling fury. Despite her own skill and physical prowess, she was a nanosecond too slow in recognizing and responding to the vicious thrust at her inner thigh, and a digitized gasp of pain escape her mask's vocalator as she dropped to the floor on one knee, her hand reflexively clamping to the flow of crimson from her leg.

She was still a hunter, though. Among the Sauroids that had raised and trained her, that title was more than simply a designation of an occupation: it was an honor bestowed only on those who had the dedication and ability to tie their entire existence to the sacred art of the hunt. She was wounded, in pain, and now at a physical disadvantage, but that changed nothing. Her prey was yet before her, and both still breathed, so the hunt must continue.

As Val danced gracefully beyond the reach of her blades, Xi's free hand shot out, flinging one of her electrified throwing stars at her foe's center of mass. The motion was repeated twice more, her arm snapping back and forth like a professional card dealer, and additional stars were now aimed at Val's shoulder and thigh.

Avatar image for rosso
#16586 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra:

A familiar wave of personal satisfaction washed over her. The satisfaction of a blade sinking into flesh that only ever accompanied wounds inflicted up close. Maybe the occasional melee wasn't all bad, she thought briefly. In controlled scenarios with particular opponents, perhaps...

However she didn't dwell on her small success for long, nor give much credence to the impulses. As Xiandra struck out again Valentina bent backwards, waist well beyond a 90-degree angle, transitioning instantly into a back walkover removing her body from the path of most projectiles. But as her body returned upright one of the electrified stars embedded itself into her chest. Minimal penetration thanks to her jacket's armored components, but it'd gone with just enough force for basic contact, seizing her muscles.

The spear clattered to the ground and Valentina fell to her back just as she roughly plucked the star from where it'd embedded.

Avatar image for phantomshell
#16587 Edited by Phantomshell (779 posts) - - Show Bio

𝕋𝕙𝕖 ℕ𝕒𝕣𝕣𝕠𝕨𝕤

It had been months since the international syndicates had used Gothic's crime infested Narrows as a host for their illegal black market auctions. Ever since the last gathering had been unceremoniously interrupted by the then, relatively unknown Hawkshade, conventional wisdom had seen the audacious event moved throughout the World. Bangkok, London, even Pyongyang.

But to make matters worse, MHMMAA Massacre had witnessed the paramilitary like execution of several mid-level Mafioso's, and more importantly, a handful of high ranking Yakuza. Never the less the Narrows had once again been selected. The Phantomshell's inability to quickly seize control of the city's criminal underbelly had involuntarily created a power-vacuum towards the bottom of the illegal trade barrel.

Taking full advantage, an aristocratic bookie calling himself Hemsworth Hippobuttom had dared to organize another auction. Once again opening the black market trade doors which had seemingly been closed for nearly a year.

An Hour Later;

No Caption Provided

"I told you. I told all of you. There is no organized crime in this city that doesnt flow through me."The Secret Strix arrogantly proclaimed. While spread throughout the floor olive colored canisters continued to spew streams of sense staggering smoke.

"Screw yourself Shell. Gothic has always been open for business. No Man's Land, remember? Who the hell you think you are?" Hippobuttom wasnt wrong. His anger wasnt misplaced. But still, he was the one on his knees, and the Phantomshell was the one with the gun. "No second chances."

click *𝐵𝐿𝒜𝒜𝒜𝑀

Avatar image for emperor_von_doom
#16588 Posted by Emperor_von_Doom (3995 posts) - - Show Bio

"Here, were many battlefields. Lost to time and fire. You see this monument?" Cull moved forward, placing his hand on the metal container.

His spectators were all standing at cold attention.

"Made in honor of those who died in the 357th Psychic War. Over 3,000 Autos died in the initial blast, while the synths invaded from all sides. It was here that they made their final stand. They refused to retreat. It was all for humanity,"

No one thought to speak up about it being a dumpster. An actual dumpster. The last person to try to inject reason into this situation was on the ground. A .998-caliber bullet claimed his head and neck, leaving it a bloodied stump.

"What have you learned today, you parasites?"

A collective whimper escaped the assembled homeless.

"That's right. N-N-N-Never forget. Never forgive."

He lowered his Bolt rifle at the line and squeezed the trigger.

Avatar image for xiandra
#16589 Edited by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso:

An opening.

As Val fell to her back, Xi ripped her homing disc from her belt and flung it to the side. The disc took flight, guided by the HUD in the Ephemeran's helmet, and the huntress sent it spinning around in a wide arc, planning to have it partially circumnavigate the room and come at Val from behind. It was just a matter of keeping her prey's attention...

To that end, the huntress stole a prey from Valentina's playbook, activating the dart in her right gauntlet and firing it upwards, where it promptly embedded itself in the ceiling and detonated, sending a shower of debris tumbling down upon the assassin's position.

Avatar image for rosso
#16590 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra said:

Valencia

Third time you've used that name. You thinkin' about someone else? ;-P

Avatar image for xiandra
#16591 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso said:
@xiandra said:

Valencia

Third time you've used that name. You thinkin' about someone else? ;-P

The word is "drinkin," not "thinkin."

But fixed. ^_^

Avatar image for rosso
#16592 Posted by Rosso (3699 posts) - - Show Bio

@xiandra:

Though immobilized, Valentina was far from unconscious. She was lucky, both for the protection of her jacket and her body's reflex to remove the still electrified star from its place, or she might have been done.

Everything hurt. Every nerve in every muscle cried out in agony, her entire body protesting as she begged it to move faster. Her eyes never left the huntress. Frantic, they traced the disk as it left Xiandra's hand and soared around the room. What is—?

But the huntress left no time to dwell, and Valentina wasn't any more interested in the device than she was in saving her skin. She aimed her grappling hook, the most ready and reliable tool in her arsenal at the moment, at Xiandra's legs. In the hopes that she could interrupt her foe while her attention was focused on the ceiling, she sought to ensnare an ankle and jerk as hard as she could, completely disrupting the huntress' aim and tripping her to the floor. Thereafter, the Shadowrunner could regain her own footing and press the advantage.

Avatar image for grimmwald
#16593 Edited by Grimmwald (2665 posts) - - Show Bio
Avatar image for emperor_von_doom
#16594 Posted by Emperor_von_Doom (3995 posts) - - Show Bio

"He sat me down. I had no overt option other than to comply, for fear that his tattered mental capacities would start to see me as one of these so-called 'synths' he keeps ranting about. I know that he has been killing normal people. He sees them as a threat, believing that they're manufactured humanoid beings inside synthetic flesh and skin. I don't think I can talk him out of it. Each time I try, it's simply a matter of him not understanding. I try to convince him that the war is over, only for him to point out noises that don't exist. Artillery bombardments from invisible guns. Raiders chanting for blood. It all changes daily. Almost hourly.

I can only continue writing. I haven't seen the sun in a few days. I could go out of the storm drain and look around, possibly escape, but it is a long way. The tunnels are also deep and labyrinthine. I don't have any doubt that this 'Cull', as he keeps calling himself, has mapped out the area extensively. If I am a prisoner of circumstance rather than of war, then he has everything to lose in his warped mind. He would have failed in his self-appointed mission, to seek out humans and keep them away from the synths. He would track me down without delay or mercy. Possibly think I were a synth, and then kill me. But then again, that might not be so bad.

I haven't eaten anything other than what Cull has scavenged for me from the 'nuclear wastes'. Basically just second-hand food, trash. It hardly ever stays down. The storm drain is the only way I can think of that I know the path to.

I'll try it tonight."

"Query: what makes a good soldier?"

The bunker around them echoed with his voice, cold and mechanical. His subordinates all roared in unison "Coordination, sir!"

All but one. Slumped in the corner, human as opposed to Auto. Cull approached him. A .998-caliber round had claimed his face and throat, leaving nothing but the red roots.

"What is coordination when the mission has been compromised?"

The bunker faded away into the storm drains and the sewer systems. Broken, shallow, empty. Cull held his Bolt rifle close and maneuvered to the edge of his territory, aiming down the scope.

"Damn s-s-s-s-synths..." he squeezed the trigger, two more fell down.

Avatar image for apex_predator87
#16595 Edited by Apex_Predator87 (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@nightwarden17: (Apologies for taking so long to post. >.<)

Apex takes his suggestions to heart and they work in tandem like a well oiled machine. But eventually, even their team work is not enough. The hologram becomes too good. Upon recognizing this, Apex knows they can no longer win. So, she says, "Hologram off." THe hologram shuts off just as it leaps at her.

Then Mary looks over at Jacob, "Hungry?"

Avatar image for nightwarden17
#16596 Edited by NightWarden17 (845 posts) - - Show Bio

(No problem at all.)

Jacob replies,"Certainly."

He then heads to find the dining hall and hopes Apex will join him.

His suit folds in on itself, morphing into civilian clothes which he adorns himself with, and he takes a seat once he finds the correct room in the expansive abode.

Avatar image for emperor_von_doom
#16597 Posted by Emperor_von_Doom (3995 posts) - - Show Bio

Eight feet of reinforced steel plating, covering hydraulic muscular and cardiovascular systems, all pumping raw oil to each and every node and artificial synapse in his hard-wired brain. Over six-hundred pounds of unrelenting war machine, designed for the singular purpose of eliminating the Enemy, of crushing the strongholds set before him, of leaving no trace behind other than the bloodied pulp of human flesh and the smoking ruin of scrap iron.

He was trapped here, in this unfamiliar age, beyond the cusp of sanity. His brevity on the understanding of mental faculties involving location were secondary. His purpose drove him beyond all limitations of computerized memory banks gone missing. He was completely ignorant to the devastated results, regardless of the outcome it would inevitably provide.

Thus Cull set out on another mission given to him by High Command. His Last Colossi Legion had been sent here to capture the city, and to reclaim it for humanity. All synths must die. In Cull's mind, it was a disservice to those under his leadership who had died here already. Almost a century now, or just short of one, they had been stationed here. Few had survived, the rest of them were scattered or captured. Cull was, effectively, alone in this war. The walls of battle collapsed in around him, as they often did. High Command had entrusted him with the retaking of this city, brick by bloody brick. He had heard no other order for decades, meaning his prime directive had not changed either.

He leveled his Bolt rifle, and fired. Another synth collapsed into a mound of shredded meat, artificial - all of it. A crude mockery of human life. The rest of them scattered, having resorted to rags for disguises. Cull gave pursuit, not inclined to letting them surround him later in this skirmish style of warfare.

Avatar image for emperor_von_doom
#16598 Edited by Emperor_von_Doom (3995 posts) - - Show Bio
No Caption Provided

The synths he followed to their holes were deceptively similar to humans. They were becoming better at camouflage, but their innards were just like any other synth. Cull ended their miserable lives for the good of the city he had been sent to retake. As the hot breath of his Bolt rifle swam in blackened discord from the muzzle, he inhaled through artificial air filters. These synths were trying to make something, something dangerous.

He entered through their hovel, his massive frame devouring the doorway, and held his gun at the ready. He couldn't sneak as well as he wanted to beyond that initial portal, for the hardwood of the flooring had given way to disheveled pipes and missing copper components. The had long been pilfered and sold away, along with most of the same from inside the walls and ceiling. It left the once-tranquil home estate a hollowed skeleton of decadence. No longer a place of sanctuary, now a pale reminder of better times - times before the Metal Wars.

The Arch-Sergeant leveled his firearm down a hallway, and caught sight of nothing. No movement. No sounds. Abandoned? Perhaps, but more than likely not. Synths were everywhere these days. All it took was for him to keep his back turned long enough and he would find a knife twisted in his spinal circuit. He continued carefully, observing the shattered televox system sitting in the corner. Archaic, with the radio nodes sticking out from on top of the device. Small screen, large wooden body. Designed for black and white picture with sound of intermediate quality.

It was of no interest, but the footsteps around him were. Something stirred in the kitchen area and he proceeded with caution. Each footfall quieted to a low murmur of sound, hydraulic limbs pumping as slowly and stiffly as possible. The cooking arrangements were all accounted for, but of similar make and age as the rest of the appliances. They were also burglarized for spare parts by the patchwork gutting on their lime-green hulls.

Cull looked closer, attempting to scan for some kind of information. A sharp pain slashed through his mind, and his metal hearts started beating in a previously-unintended fashion. His rifle clattered to the floor as the arm that held it suddenly fell limp. He could twitch a finger or two at a time, but he couldn't run a diagnostic just yet - especially with gold clubs and tire irons smashing into his head and neck. His sergeant-commissar's cap fell to the ground, an insult to his station, and the beatings relented. The synths were in a large enough group to dismantle him, especially since one of them had come from behind. Five of them, having planned an ambush here. More upstairs from the sounds of the oncoming footsteps.

"This your gun, metal man?" one of them grinned, reaching for the firearm. Cull just smirked.

As soon as the synth touched it, a powerful electric shock entered his system through his fingertips. The overloading of his motor functions caused him to fall to the ground seizing. He would be dead in a matter of seconds.

"God damn it," Cull heard.

"You have no gods, you stupid Massies," he spat, obviously not finished. They tried beating him down again, but they had lost the one thing of value to their plan: surprise.

Cull reached behind his shoulder blade, ripping the blade obstructing his leverage adapter cog. With it uninhibited, he could move freely again. He grabbed one of the synths by the entirety of their skull, pulping them in another swift motion. That's when the synths who had been hiding out upstairs opened fire. They had been preparing augmented firearms, converted fully-automatic guns. Cull threw his latest victim into their line of sight, obstructing them long enough for him to get his own rifle.

"Missed you babe," he muttered, hoisting the .998-caliber monster into clear view of his quarry. Even through the drywall and plaster, his eyes could catch sight of them.

And he spared none.

The home became a bloodied carcass of a building, splattered red with pulverized meat and bone. Cull picked up his hat and made his way downstairs, only to find what these synths had been trying so vehemently to protect.

"Drugs, huh? To corrupt the last few humans in this settlement?"

He found a can of gas in the kitchen, possible used to refuel the nearby generator, and layered the basement with a coat.

"Another one down," he grumbled, striking a match against the coarse metal of his forehead.

The ensuing inferno rocked the neighborhood, a knot of chemical pressure having just been set to explode.

Avatar image for xiandra
#16599 Posted by Xiandra (165 posts) - - Show Bio

@rosso:

Her gaze momentarily drawn upward, Xi only recognized Val's attack when her fired grapnel wrapped itself around her ankle, pulling armored form prone on the floor with a crash of metal. Her aim spoiled, the explosive dart embedded itself in a section of ductwork. The volatium charge within detonated, releasing enough explosive force to tear the entire 20-foot section free of its moorings, and it crashed cacophoniously to the floor of the warehouse.

Meanwhile, Xi, slashed wildly at the taut cable that had pulled her to the floor, gambling on her blade's sharpness being up to the challenge of the cable's durability.

Avatar image for phantomshell
#16600 Posted by Phantomshell (779 posts) - - Show Bio