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#51 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Vai cocked her head slightly. "A locker in a warehouse?" She asked the question he hadn't. "Well we can turn this place inside out pretty quickly and if we don't find it, it's either been moved or you have a bigger problem than you thought you did." She said. She didn't put voice specifically to the problem, but suspected he was thinking it as well. "What do you know about the people that are after him?"

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#52 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

“Not much, unfortunately. All he told me was that they were ex-military and they want their secrets back that he stole from them.”

Hal creates dozens of ball-like constructs with his ring before sending them out in all directions as he searches for the elusive locker. But, he failed to find it. If Vai tries herself, still no luck. No locker detected.

Inevitably, Hal has to stop and consider that his ‘friend’ tried to set him up. He sigh’s, “I think it’s time we had a little chat with my buddy.” Jaw set in determination, Hal takes off. He uses the ring to pass right through the warehouse ceiling and fly over to Bakerline. He lands in front of a small house and walks up to the door. He knocks, but no answer. He knocks again, no answer. Hal checks the door, it’s locked. Using his ring, he creates a key for the lock and opens the door. Inside, he calls out the name of his friend, “Hobbs, you here? I couldn’t find the locker. You sure it was at...” Hal stops dead in his tracks as he walks in a room and sees a bomb counting down and with only seconds to spare.

Reacting on instinct, Hal places the bomb in a green force field and it explodes harmlessly inside of it. Hal grits his teeth as he exercises his willpower. Once the explosion was done, he stops concentrating and let’s the force field die out. Hal clenches his fists, “Well, that answers that question. He set me up, and you too since you were there. Question is, why?”

Then it hits Hal like a ton of bricks as he says barely above a whisper, “He wants to sell the secrets he got...”

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#53 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Vai followed after him and let him take the lead, in part to watch and see how he was with his ring and in part because it was his friend and his issue to deal with. When the bomb was dealt with she shook her head a little. "I'm sorry it came to that." She told him gently. "I put a lot of value on friends and to have one turn on you must be very painful. The question now though is where he went, what secrets he had and how we can stop him from selling them. Then when this is over, we'll sit down and have a drink and talk about ourselves, rather than what happened here." She offered, hoping she could get him away from the pain she knew he must feel. Besides, Green Sentinels should spend at least some time getting to know one another, you never know when you might need to rely upon each other.

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#54 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

Hal smiles at her, “I’d love to have a drink, but not alcohol. That impairs my use of the ring so I never drink the stuff.” Then he thinks of something, as if remembering something. With grim determination, he glances her way, “I’m not sure, but I think I might know where he is. And then, I’m going to get some answers,” His ring flashes brightly for a moment as he holds his fist up, “Even if I have to beat them out of him.”

And with that, Hal takes off and phases through the roof of the house. Where is he going? Ah, Metro City Airport. He lands by a plane and a man surrounded by two other guys carrying suitcases. With anger in his voice, Hal confronts Hobbs, “You lied to me.”

Hobbs smiles, opening his arms wide, “Well, look who survived the trap I sent him into. Too bad, your ring would have fetched a nice price on the black market.” Then Hobbs’s eyes roam just a little too slowly over Vai’s curves. “I see you brought a friend and a rather lovely one at that.”

The vein on Hal’s neck could be seen as his anger rises. “We were friends. Why, Hobbs?”

Hobbs gives a little chuckle, then he takes on a deadly serious tone, “Because Hal, I’m tired of working my butt off for people and not getting ahead! I’m tired of guys like us getting a raw deal!”

Hal blinks, anger diminishing a little, “What do you mean a raw deal?”

Hobbs shakes his head, “Hal, you used to be an Air Force pilot and then they kicked you out for punching your superior who deserved it! And me, I used to be a fighter pilot and I got kicked out over some botched mission in Iraq! After that, I became a test pilot. I test flew jets and planes before anyone else could, but I’d never achieve my dreams again. All I would get is a taste before letting those projects go to the real pilots!”

Hal’s anger was back, “And you think that’s an excuse to steal secrets and set me up?!”

Hobbs held a grim smile, “I tried, Hal, I tried getting you in on this yesterday but you didn’t take the offer. So, if your not with me, your against me.” Hobbs loses his grin.

Hal clenches his jaw, both fists at his side clenching. “Don’t do this, Hobbs. You can still walk away.”

Momentary regret appears on Hobbs face, “No, no I can’t. Take care of them, both of them!”

Hobbs begins running towards the plane off to the side even as the bodyguards reveal...power rods. Crap. More Sentry Hunters. Hal falls to his knees and slams his fist into the ground, the pavement beginning to crack with a green glow appearing from them.

“No one escapes the Sentry Hunters.” Both of the machines, in human disguise, say in unison.

The ground begins to shake. “No evil shall escape my sight!” Hal says, reciting part of the Green Sentinel oath even as the ground erupts with dozens of green constructs of tenticles, which grab both Sentries. Their power rods are already vaporizing some of the tenticles, but Hal just grows new ones and attacks the Sentries in earnest, “BEWARE MY POWER!”

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#55 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Oh yeah, this guy is grade A jerk. Vai thought when they encountered his so called friend. She shook her head at his leering, not concerned with the physical desires of a male that had about the same chance of getting into her bed as a spit gun did have downing a B-52. She remained quiet during the exchange until the inevitable happened. She hesitated a moment. It seems he has those two in hand for now, but it might take him some time to neutralize them, time his friend will use to escape. Limited telepath, I'm going after your former friend, looks like you can take those two for the time being. Yell if you need help. Vai said by way of telepathy.

She took off in a sprint, giving the tentacles and the fight a wide birth and made a bee line for the man with the stolen secrets. An ordinary human had zero chance of outrunning the natural born predator, she hit stride at sixty miles an hour and darted straight for the man. As she ran, she used her ring to try and create a barrier to block off the door to the plane by created a wall of solid green energy. The open terrain was perfect for her speed and soon if he didn't manage an escape or a counter, he'd find out what kind of strength she was capable of.

Don't kill him though, I don't think Hal would appreciate that much...too bad, because I kind of want to wipe that leering smirk all over the pavement. One problem at a time I suppose. She already had her next moves planned either for if she reached him or if he managed to get into the plane. Either way, you're coming with me.

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#56 Edited by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: (Are we having fun yet?)

Hal was surprised by the telepathy, but he thought, Understood. Hopefully, as a telepath, she picked that up. Even as Hal turned his attention back to the Sentry Hunters, his friend had a little surprise for Vai.

Hobbs finds the entrance to the plane blocked by Vai’s construct and he stops dead in his tracks. He actually tries punching it, he must be crazy. He turns around and faces Vai, dropping the briefcase he was carrying. The man sees Vai rushing at him as fast as a car is.

Hobbs let’s Vai get close, then his skin takes on a silver metallic sheen all of a sudden. He’s a Meta-Human! Hopefully, this catches Vai by enough surprise that when Hobbs swings a punch at her solar plexus, it knocks the air from her lungs, especially considering how fast she rushed at him. If this punch connects, Hobbs smiles as he grabs a handful of her long, beautiful, hair, “Surprise B***!” Then he tries to land a hard blow to her nose using his super-human strength.

Regardless if he misses the first and/or the second punch, he still says what he says.

Hal would help, but he has his hands full at the moment.

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#57 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio
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#58 Posted by Aleron (362 posts) - - Show Bio
Did you say...
Did you say...

Metrocity?!
Metrocity?!

No Caption Provided

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#59 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: (Are we having fun yet?)

Hal was surprised by the telepathy, but he thought, Understood. Hopefully, as a telepath, she picked that up. Even as Hal turned his attention back to the Sentry Hunters, his friend had a little surprise for Vai.

Hobbs finds the entrance to the plane blocked by Vai’s construct and he stops dead in his tracks. He actually tries punching it, he must be crazy. He turns around and faces Vai, dropping the briefcase he was carrying. The man sees Vai rushing at him as fast as a car is.

Hobbs let’s Vai get close, then his skin takes on a silver metallic sheen all of a sudden. He’s a Meta-Human! Hopefully, this catches Vai by enough surprise that when Hobbs swings a punch at her solar plexus, it knocks the air from her lungs, especially considering how fast she rushed at him. If this punch connects, Hobbs smiles as he grabs a handful of her long, beautiful, hair, “Surprise B***!” Then he tries to land a hard blow to her nose using his super-human strength.

Regardless if he misses the first and/or the second punch, he still says what he says.

Hal would help, but he has his hands full at the moment.

Vai's species was agile as well as fast, a fact she took advantage of when it became clear her target was going to attack her. She darted left suddenly just at the moment he attempted to strike and his punch missed by less than an inch. She rotated the position of her torso and created an energy field between herself and Hal's former friend. The field was curved at the point of her shoulder and as she sped towards him she launched her shoulder towards the position where his left arm connected at the shoulder joint. Running at this speed with a reinforced energy wall as her aide, she intended to drive into his shoulder and force him off his feet as well as potentially tear the shoulder ligaments and render his arm basically useless.

The impact would hopefully disrupt his attempted follow up attacks but she was preparing her defense if they didn't. Vai slipped a hand to her belt, her fingers coiling around the handle of her sickle shaped knives. One such knife hung from each hip and was a curved blade that represented the killing claw of a velociraptor attached to a handle meant to be held horizontally in the fingers of a closed fist so that the claw would emerge from between the middle fingers. The blade itself was actually a bone claw coated in meta-material sharpened at the mono-molecular level and capable of slicing through anything short of Adamantium.

If he avoided her initial strike, she'd bring the dagger out and seek to finish the job up close and personal, where she didn't fear his strength. Her Green Sentinel powers would come into play as well.

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#60 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio
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#61 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

Vai’s attack succeeded and Hobbs grunted in pain, being lifted into the air before landing and rolling a few times. He tries to move his left arm, but it was rendered useless. He uses his right arm to help him up and stands back on his feet. He was a stubborn man, “You ruined my left arm, got to use my right arm now!” He actually smiles. Despite the pain Vai brought him, he was enjoying this.

But Hobbs stops, glances over Vai’s shoulder at Hal’s fight with the Sentry Hunters, then glances at Vai. Hobbs was many things but he knew when he was beat. Even if he could beat her, it would take too long because Hal was almost done with his own fight. Hobbs had not counted on Vai’s presence so he was not prepared for her, just Hal. And he knew he could not beat two Green Sentinels.

“Well, looks like you got me, gorgeous. But I still win because I’m not giving back what I stole.” He grins at her. “No one is getting inside that briefcase without the pass code. And if you try and pry it open with that fancy ring of yours or tamper with it in any way, it’ll explode in your face.”

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#62 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Vai, unlike some heroes, didn't have a no kill rule. She was a natural born predator, a product of millions of years of lethal evolution and a carnivore. When she saw the smug grin on his face and his refusal to admit defeat, a dozen ways to kill him flashed through her mind. Instead, she smiled and removed the knife from her belt. "You ever watch Jurassic Park?" She asked him with a widening grin. "You know the movie that was loosely based on the events at Jurassic World? Do you remember the scene where the paleontologist explains to the kid why he should be worried about Velociraptors?" She tapped the flat of her sickle claw dagger against his gut.

"So here's your options. You can open the suitcase or we can do a little re-enacting. Oh, and also there's a mild flaw with your plan. Technically to keep what you stole safe, all we have to do is keep it from falling into someone else's hands. We could for example, pry the case open with our rings while you're holding it." Despite the smile on her face, her eyes were deadly serious. There was no amusement in them, no hint of bluffing, only a predatory glean that often separated one part of the food chain from the other.

See how easily this guy scares, fear is sometimes the easiest means to get someone to surrender entirely.

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#63 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: Before Hobbs could respond to anything Vai had just said, a severed head of a Sentry Hunter rolls over and bumps into his foot. He looks down, then glares coldly at Hal who is now behind Vai and to her left. Hal has a few bruises forming and some small scrapes and cuts, but otherwise he is fine. “Hobbs, don’t make this any more difficult than it has to be.”

Hobbs looks from Hal to Vai, then sigh’s as he lowers his head, “Fine. The code is 103457.”

Hal enters the code and the briefcase opens, revealing the flashdrive, a fancy gun and two clips of ammo to go with it. Hal ignores the gun and picks up the flashdrive. He offers the flashdrive to Vai before Hal surrounds Hobbs in a green force field. Hal looks at Hobbs, “Where did you steal this from? And don’t lie, I’m not in the mood.”

“I stole it from the Avtran mainframe in Seattle, WA.” Hobbs says rather reluctantly.

Hal looks at Vai, “If you don’t mind, could you take that flashdrive back? I’d like to take Hobbs to Stryker’s Island Prison.”

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#64 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Vai nodded. "I'll take it back, no problem. You going to be ok?" She asked, putting the knife back on her belt. "If you need to contact me, just use your ring. I'm still up for that drink later if you want it, even if all you drink is water." She said with a grin. She took the flash drive and slid it carefully into a pocket and glanced at the two men for a moment. "Don't give him any trouble." She told Hobbs. "Or next time you're dealing with me."

Vai smiled a little and put a hand on Hal's shoulder. "I wish this could have ended better for you, I really do. He's not worth it though, don't let yourself suffer over the likes of him. "

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#65 Posted by Antidoll (282 posts) - - Show Bio

Their engines roared like thunder and came in the dead of night, the cacophony of motorized noise and shake of their speeding trajectory a disturbance at large. Car alarms blared in protest flashing headlights in strobing protest, and dogs barked in annoyance. As they sped onward into the slums dedicated to discarded life however notice decreased. In the region of outcasts the outlaws were just as welcome the fanfare of their arival the same nonchalant atmosphere given to anyone else. Anarchy was a melancholy tone here and so as engines began to come to a purr as the bikes pulled to a stop nobody paid any mind. Another gang distributing gangland justice who should care what the crew was here for.

Off color class the color pallet of the automotive horses and their apocalyptic riders was a mixture of bleak washed out tones and much more vibrant neon. Cross stitching and off centered patterns fused with patches of cards and diamonds of the Jokers Wild. Below the emblem of the criminalized clan was the name of a city best forgotten. It'd been cast aside, burned and bombed that town they'd called home. It was for the best that Gothic's outcasts moved on and for the worst that the outlaws of the no man's land had come here. Before they could settle down though into their new abode someone needed to be visited properly in accordance to his fleeting behavior.

Diamond ink runs down the left arm the symbol in its entirety rests on chiseled back of a lone man sitting at the make shift bar of the ware house the gang had entered. His cut, a jacket that said to which clan he belonged rested on the stole beside him, he looked ragged hungover and tired but like most bikers he wasn't going to leave the cut behind if it could be helped. It was easy to run from the family for some when things got hard, running from one's self though didn't come easy. As the sad melody of a rock track ended and a new heavier song loaded spirits were briefly lifted. The music of choice far more invigorating and accompanied by the riders sitting beside the runaway for one last time. A shared drink to reminisce in what was and numb in what was to come.

"You left us while the clubhouse was being hit by an orbital strike" Rose remarked, her sister and the other five members shaking their head in disgust.

Another swig of beer from the wayward biker "I know."

"So how do you want to go out?" Calamity the pig tailed president asked raising a shot glass to her lips.

"Put me under, I'd like it to be over." He'd been with the charter from the start of its short life. He'd been apart of another before this one as well, it'd been put to rest by one of the many vigilantes but like many he couldn't leave that life. He wanted to go out as a member even if that'd be the end itself of his membership. No turning from what he was born into he raised his glass to his brothers and sisters and they to him.

The clanking of bottles and glasses came in broken harmony to the riff of a guitar. One member went to the stereo turning it up as loud as it could go, it's heavy beats rattled bones and rattled the home. Another group of members took the runaway to the floor and held him down, he didn't resist just rested his face against the cold concrete. The rest of the gang took up their weapons of choice, from switch blades to sledgehammers and chains to bats they all swung. Beneath the swings was the arm, ink was ripped away beneath bruising blows ripping nails and crushing impacts. Carried out till the arm was almost no more the wayward member clenched teeth in pain but refused to protest, it wouldn't be much longer now as sidearms were drawn.

No longer holding him down or by a booming radio the gang all circled around their brother in his last moments. Eyes met and it was clear this was a rare moment where the mayhem wasn't joyously embraced. Code stood though and so fingers tightened on the triggers as a variety of semi automatics yelled spitting forth a surplus of slugs into a brothers back. Shot to the point where a tatt was just a series of holes and spilled vermillion. Heads hung low in grief upon exit steeds were once more mounted. Some chaos would have to follow as a more celebratory send off of the night.

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#66 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

When Vai asked if Hal would be ok, he nods, “I’ll be fine.” He gives her glance. When Vai spoke to Hobbs, giving him that subtle warning, he just glares silently at her.

“I don’t plan to.” Hal says, responding to her last statement, then begins to lift off the ground, taking Hobbs with him. But then he stops, looks down at her and smiles, “About that drink. Do you know where the Ace of Clubs is? It’s in Suicide Slum, I’ll meet you there in an hour.”

And with that, he takes off with Hobbs in tow, who can only smirk, “You find the most interesting women, Hal.”

I didn’t find her, she found me. Hal thinks to himself. Out loud, he says to Hobbs in no uncertain terms, “Shut up.”

After Hal takes care of Hobbs, and Stryker’s Island prison having another meta-human to lock up, Hal lands in an alley way by the Ace of Clubs and changes into his civilian identity of Hal Knight. Then he wills his ring to turn invisible before he walks out of the alley and walks in the Ace of Clubs. He has a seat in a corner booth, but easily seen from the entrance so Vai can spot him if she comes in. When a waitress comes, he asks for two menus as someone will be joining him soon. After the extra menu is given, Hal thanks the waitress and then sits there and waits for Vai. As he does, he kind of just stares off into the distance, thinking about recent events.

No Caption Provided

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#67 Posted by Aleron (362 posts) - - Show Bio
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#68 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

No Caption Provided

Vai entered the building not long after Hal arrived. She pushed the doors open, the sound of paparazzi cameras snapping spilled into the Ace of Clubs as the daughter of Gale Xanders strolled into the place like she owned it. She had carefully constructed the expected reputation of someone of her raising, a party girl who's taste in men was 'yes' and who had very little in the way of real world responsibilities and concerns. The truth of course, Hal had experienced first hand.

She smiled and shut the doors behind her, cutting off the wall of mostly male 'reporters' hoping to catch a adult rated photo to post on their latest blog. Her ring was also hidden, disguised as an ordinary diamond ring (that would probably have cost more than some houses if it were real) and if she cared that she was in the slum district, she showed no sign of it.

She walked over to where Hal was seated and took a seat across from him with a smile. "So we meet again." She said with a grin. "Time to move forward from earlier and enjoy ourselves." She told him, wanting him to look past the heart ache he must be feeling. Can't imagine that it felt like to have your best friend try to kill you.

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#69 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

(Vai’s looking hot! Heh) :-)

News of Vai’s visit to the Ace of Clubs reaches the owner, a certain Nathan Hawke, husband to Nora and Father to Keira Hawke. Nate was well aware of Vai’s reputation and did not know why she chose to pay a visit to his place, but he’d be sure she enjoyed herself and was not disturbed.

When Vai entered, Hal looks over and was about to wave her over when he realized he did not need to since Vai saw him before he could. Yes, Hal, like Nate, also knew of Vai’s reputation. But he also saw her for who she really was. And Vai was nothing at all like the spoiled rich brat everyone thought she was. The truth was, Vai was much different than that and she had impressed him both as a person and as a Green Sentinel. Usually the rich don’t really take an interest in those who are not, but Hal knows there is more to Vai than meets the eye.

No Caption Provided

Hal smiles at her, “You got yourself a deal.” After a short pause, he adds, “I had the waitress bring two menus for us.” Then he quickly looks her over, “You look stunning.” And he meant every word, she really did look beautiful right now. Then Hal glances down at his menu.

If Vai looks at her menu, she will see it has a large selection of drinks, both alcohol and non-alcoholic. It also has a number of food dishes available, some with a variety of meat and some vegetarian. Hal glances over his menu, deciding on a Vanilla Cream Soda.

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#70 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Vai smiled prettily at his compliment. "Thank you, I hoped you might like it." She glanced down at the menu for a moment, flipping through a few of the pages. After choosing something with meat she also selected one of their stronger alcoholic drinks. Her species was not immune to alcohol but was far more tolerant than humans and one drink wouldn't impact her at all. "I don't meet many others in our industry as often as I'd like." She said, intentionally leaving out anything about Green Sentinels in case someone over heard them. "I thought it would be nice to get to know one another, you know, outside of work. My mother's actually investing in the area and I'm looking into buying an apartment so I can live part time in Metro City."

She smirked a little and brushed stray hair behind her ear. "Got any suggestions?"

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#71 Edited by Bogeyman (7019 posts) - - Show Bio

@antidoll:

"There she is! Lookin' gorgeous and hotter than a purple Lambo", the Connoisseur grinned, his stark blue eyes drinking in the sight of his neon purple one-of-a-kind supercar; the Quicksilver G1. Sleek and home to a large turbocharged and supercharged 7.0 liter V-8 engine, the 1,104 horsepower supercar sat parked by his mansion driveway, surrounded by the Certified G's armed and dapper cronies and gangsters. Peacocking in an Alexander McQueen ensemble, diamond studs worn by his ears, glitzed out bracelets and a diamond-encrusted Hublot Big Bang watch hugging his wrists, the Connoisseur smiled, a worldly and narcissistic cockiness cast by his pale, tattooed features, "See the shoes?", he asked, gesturing towards his posh leather shoes with a jewel-encrusted cane.

"See my shoes, bitch? I'm havin' a hard time holdin' these gators down", he laughed, twirling his cane with show-stopping flair, his cronies smiling in submission and fear, "Yeah they're real nice, boss", one of them, Dwayne, nodded. Tall and muscled like an ox, Dwayne was the Connoisseur's most veteran gangster, his most loyal crony. "Real nice?", the Certified G paused, left eyebrow raised, fingers running through his slicked back emerald hair, "Real... nice...", he repeated, nonchalant laughter escaping him, "This is the type of shit ya wear when you reach a certain level, Dwayne. The type of shit ya wear when you buy a f****** chimichanga with the chilli sauce drippin' onto your hand and you wipe it with hundred dollar bills m***********!", the Connoisseur berated, tossing his cane for one of his gangsters to catch as he strode forward, the eyes of a slighted sociopath holding Dwayne's in a heart-stopping glare.

No Caption Provided

"The type of shit ya wear when you own a pimped out, gold-plated, gorgeous handgun; the Bona-Fide Stud!", the Mad Pimp continued, reaching for said handgun from his holster, shoving the firearm into Dwayne's gut. "So I expect a bit more than "real nice". Maybe I'm not gonna shoot ya, Dwayne. That'd be counterproductive. I still need you. You're gonna be one of my guys in government positions, helpin' me get politicians in my pocket for a couple of Gs". Easing away with a grin that saw his diamond grills glisten under the moonlight, the Connoisseur shook his head, "Don't be bitch-made, Dwayne. I threaten you like once everyday! Get used to it. If you die, you die, but I've kept ya alive so far for a reason", he laughed, gesturing towards the Quicksilver G1, "Get in. Let's get this money".

Swallowing the lump in his throat, Dwayne nodded, "Yeah... okay boss", he exhaled in relief, glancing at his colleagues as the tension eased from the atmosphere. Behind the steering wheel and accompanied by his cronies, the Connoisseur drove off, the violent roar of a powerful V-8 engine rippling through the night air. They were to meet the Antidoll sisters, at a nightclub in Metro City. Gothic City was on the verge of reconstruction, an effort the Mad Pimp would oversee and manipulate through his ties with Don Vito, head of the Corleone Family. And once Gothic was rebuilt and bustling, he would need eyes and ears on it's streets, he'd need alliances to once more establish his criminal empire in the most infamous of American cities.

No Caption Provided

Thirty minutes later, seated by the corner at a nightclub with vibrant lights and bombastic music, the Certified G lounged and indulged in bottles of Johnnie Walker's Blue Label, his gangsters standing by him, armed to the teeth and forbidden from indulging in the vices reserved for "real OGs". There, the Connoisseur waited for the Antidoll sisters. There was a deal to be struck.

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#72 Posted by Dreadstroke (1131 posts) - - Show Bio
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#73 Edited by Bogeyman (7019 posts) - - Show Bio

@dreadstroke: F*** outta here with that John Cena shit, LMAO. He's such a lame rapper.

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#74 Posted by Dreadstroke (1131 posts) - - Show Bio

@connoisseur: Now I want one of Conn's cronies to be caught listening to that just to see his reaction, LOL.

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#75 Posted by Bogeyman (7019 posts) - - Show Bio
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#76 Posted by Dreadstroke (1131 posts) - - Show Bio
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#77 Posted by Bogeyman (7019 posts) - - Show Bio
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#78 Edited by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

Hal's brief thought of Sinestra
Hal's brief thought of Sinestra

When the waitress comes and takes their order, Hal is mildly surprised that Vai orders something to eat. After the waitress suggests a nice juicy steak, Hal decides he might as well join Vai in a nice dinner. “Make that two, but I’ll take mine well done and a Vanilla Cream Soda to drink, no dessert.” And with a smile, the waitress writes down the order and takes the menus away.

When Vai mentions she does not meet very many Green Sentinels, his thoughts go to Sinestra. But thoughts of that particular red skinned alien are brief and Vai would know that if she read Hal’s mind. All of a sudden, Hal’s mind is a blank.

It was a smart move to get to know one another, regardless of what the news says about this later and knowing them, the news outlets will likely talk about this too. Especially if Hal and Vai keep hanging out with each other. Hal taps his fingers against each other as Vai asks for a good apartment to stay at, “Well...uh, maybe but I don’t know what kind of place you would like. I can suggest two places to start, though. The first is St. Martin’s Island which where is the rich and famous live. The second suggestion is the middle class apartments at 344 Clinton Street in New Troy.”

Hal does not mention the fact that he lives at the apartments at 344 Clinton street, room 3-D on the third floor to be exact.

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#79 Edited by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"St. Martin's Island it is." Vai said with a smile. "I'll use mom's credit card." She teased. "Where do you stay anyway?" She added after a moment's thought. Although she was a telepath, she could only communicate with it, mind reading was not something her species was capable of. Instead she required ordinary conversation. She leaned back in her seat, relaxing a bit. Her eyes shifted from him for a moment to a window that looked out on the slums. Her smile faded a little.

"We're planning to help these people as much as we can." She said after a moment. "I don' like seeing people forced into a situation like this. You can hardly blame some of them for turning to crime...saw the same thing in Gothic City, it's unhealthy."

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#80 Posted by _Reynard_ (3203 posts) - - Show Bio
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#81 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

Ahh, Hal is not surprised that she picked St. Martin’s Island. He has never been there, but he has seen it from a distance as he frequently flies over Metro City. At her question, Hal says, “I stay at the apartments at 344 Clinton Street, room 3-D on the third floor.” And if she ever wanted to see him there, she is free to do so. Just be prepared to enter a very bachelor like apartment, it’s not going to be fancy and Hal does, indeed, live like typical bachelor.

Hal follows her gaze then looks back at Vai, “It’s an admirable goal and I hope you and your Mom succeed where others have failed. As a reporter, I wanted to investigate rumors of a vigilante operating in the slums, but my boss won’t let me since he firmly believes in pursuing truth rather than an unsubstantiated rumor that is more in the way of an urban legend than anything else.”

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#82 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"Maybe I'll stop by some time." She said with a smile. "Just don't report on that." She added with a grin.

She listened to him and considered the window again for a moment before she returned her gaze to Hal. "There's always some amount of truth to urban legends and rumors. The question isn't if it's true, the questions is if you want to reveal the truth in it. You may find out that you don't, you may even find out it would do more harm than good."

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#83 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: Hal smiles, he wouldn't dream of reporting on her coming to his apartment. And, of course, this entire conversation is strictly off the record. He won't put any of it in tomorrow's paper. Vai has quickly become a friend and hopefully will become an even better friend later on. If it goes beyond friendship, that has yet to be seen. But honestly, Hal is not even thinking of that.

Hal listens to her sage advice, "That is a very interesting take on it. If these rumors are true and the crime rate really is dropping because if this...urban legend, then perhaps silence is golden."

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#84 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"Sometimes speaking out can destroy a hero like that. They can operate the way they do because people don't know who they are. Once they do...they're suddenly vulnerable." Vai explained. "What you do is of course up to you, I just thought I'd share my understanding of it."

Their food and drinks soon arrived and she took a drink before proceeding to work at cutting some pieces off of the stake. "Hal, what created the Suicide Slums anyway?"

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#85 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

Hal appreciates her understanding of things. It was a very good viewpoint and she need not worry. Hal had no intention of making things difficult for that mysterious vigilante. As a reporter, there is a time to pursue truth and a time not to.

Ah, the food! Hal begins cutting up his steak and then takes a bite. Of course, that’s when Vai asked him that question. So, he finishes chewing his food, takes a sip of his soda, then answers. “It all started way back in the 1920‘s with a man called Harry Black. He was a con man who got people to invest far more than they were able to in unreliable stocks, all so Mr. Black could get rich and make a quick buck.”

Hal pauses, a mild frown appearing on his handsome face. Then he continued, “When the depression hit, a lot of people did not have any money and were not able to provide for their families. In one day alone, a record 45 suicides were reported and a police officer called Hob’s Bay ‘Suicide Slum’ because of that. The name stuck and obviously, the slums have never recovered. Couple that with many families losing their husbands during World War I, many wives had to enter the workforce and a lot of children ended up on the streets. Crime, homelessness and poverty rates shot up uncontrollably and it’s still an unfortunate legacy the city still battles with today. All because of Harry Black and his greed.”

Hal looks down at his food, letting silence come between them. Then he speaks softly, “I hear that Green Sentinel tried doing something in Suicide Slum two years ago to make it better. In one night, he destroyed every gun, every drug stash, stopped every crime he became aware of and did not rest until Suicide Slum was clean. But you know what happened the next day? The people found new ways to hurt each other and commit crime, so it didn’t matter what Green Sentinel did because the people either refused to change or were unwilling to.”

Another short pause, then Hal looks Vai right in the eye and did not mince his words here, “I’m not saying Suicide Slum cannot be helped, because it can. What I am saying is, if you and your mother really want to help then both of you better be prepared for the long haul because it’s not going to be an easy fix. The help you want to accomplish here will, literally, take years and it may just take a lifetime.”

Then Hal grins, opening his arms wide, “But this pub is a great place to start. The man who owns it grew up in the slums. And after spending a few years in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, he got this pub as a positive place for people to visit. A safe place where people can gather and have some good food. Suicide Slum didn’t have anything like this before since the Ace of Clubs used to be a filthy bar with a bad rep. But Nathan Hawke has really turned this place around. So, to the pathway to help begins with one step at a time. And I really think the Ace of Clubs and the help you and your mother want to provide can help this place heal.”

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#86 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Heh, a life time. Maybe your lifetime but definitely not mine. "That's all really terrible." Vai said honestly. She ate a little bit of her food and took a drink, contemplating his words for a moment. "It takes time to build a city or a portion of a city and it takes time to tear it down. We'll get it going again...one place at a time like you say." She smirked a little. "And don't worry, my mother doesn't do anything with short term in mind. If she comes here, it's for the long haul, probably longer than people expect. I'll have to let her know that this place would be a good connection that Jurassic Tower could interact with. We're going to build a hotel here with five star amenities and no price tag, secured by Maverick. It's meant to be a place where the homeless or the desperate to escape can go and live or at least stay for a time. She ran something similar in Gothic with great success."

Vai's smile faded a little as she considered all he had told her and she shook her head. I wonder what happened to the man that caused all this. "Are there people exploiting this area or have they at least been left alone in that regard? I would hate to see people put down like this only to have someone manage to benefit from what has happened. If there is someone benefiting, I want to know who they are...because I'm going to shut them down."

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#87 Edited by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: How little did Vai know, or Hal himself, that he will be around a lot longer than people think. The ring can do truly wondrous things, isn't it possible to use it to slow down the aging process? An interesting thought if one sits down and thinks about it. But would Hal do that? Would he even think to do it? Now, that is an interesting question indeed.

Hal sees she truly wants to help, which is good. He will as well, but not in the same capacity since he is not rich. But as a reporter, he can help in that regard. And who knows, if Vai has a piloting job for him someday he can do that too. Hal continues to eat when does, once more silence comes between them. But it's not ackward, it's pleasant, at least for Hal it is.

Then Vai speaks again and Hal briefly purses his lips, "Then you might as well try cutting out cancer with a sledgehammer because anyone who has a criminal record in the Slums benefits in some way. But, your referring to one man who, or woman, who stands to benefit from the state of the slums. Well...unfortunately, that's a dead end too. See, I had my suspicions that Lionel Sharr, CEO of SharrCorp, had his hands in this. But, no one could prove it. The man was a slippery snake and the times the police charged him with this or that, he always managed to have plausible deniability and came out smelling like a rose. It gets worse because, I don't know if you'd been reading the papers, but Lionel Sharr is dead. It's been announced as a suicide and now Lionel's daughter stands to take over the company and she's clean as far as anyone knows, no criminal record. Like I said, a dead end. So, if you want to find out who benefits, then you'll have to do it the hard way like the Cops do."

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#88 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

Vai considered his words in silence for a few moments as she ate. Eventually she pushed the empty plate away and leaned back in her seat, meeting his gaze again with a smile. "I intend to look into everything you pointed out. I'll do it and my mother will do it when she's able to travel here. She has her own...methods for discovering information. I think it'll be her that goes and speaks to his Lionel Sharr's daughter, business person to business person. Sometimes I can represent my mother's interests but most business people don't take me seriously. They usually think I'm there to be the life of the party."

She smirked to make it clear that it didn't bother her in the least. "What do you have on this Sharr character? You said you suspected he played a role, so I'd like to see anything you have if you're willing to share it. Should probably do that somewhere more private though."

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#89 Edited by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: And Hal finished his food too, pushing his plate away and wiping his lips on a napkin. As far as steaks go, that was pretty good. He might have a favorite place to eat. So, what does it matter that he has to travel an extra few miles to get it?

He nods once she reveals her plans, "That sounds like a good plan. Like I said, Monica Sharr has no criminal record. So, if your mother does not find an enemy in her, she may gain a very powerful ally."

Hal glances this way and that, then lowers his voice, "If Monica is legit, then once she takes over SharrCorp, she will literally own at least half of this city. And if she turns out to be a friend, she could help you and your mother out a great deal. So, a word of advice, give her the benefit of the doubt, even if she is a Sharr."

Then at Vai's last request, Hal is unsure but willing, "I'd be more than happy to give you everything I have on Lionel Sharr, but I don't know how good the information will be with him dead. Plus, add to the fact that his daughter may never have known her father was a suspected criminal. She lived a pretty sheltered life from what I could tell. So...you still want that information? If so, we can go to my apartment since I kept everything there."

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#90 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"Yeah I don't want to cause problems for anyone who's innocent, I won't assume she's dirty just because of her name don't worry." Vai assured him. It's nice to see he's concerned about that as well, many are only concerned with how many criminals can be stuffed behind bars, not the fact that sometimes the apple does fall far from the tree.

Vai stood up and removed a small wad of cash from her pocket, tossing it onto the table. If he were to unfold it all and count it he'd find a hundred dollars sitting on the table, more than enough to cover the bill. "I'd be happy to go with you." She told him with a smile, offering him a hand to help him up out of his seat. "But you'll have to show me the way. Is it within walking distance?"

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#91 Edited by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

Hal did not need to unfold the wad of cash Vai laid down because he could see it was a very sizable tip. The Ace of Clubs wasn’t exactly an expensive place to eat at nor was it a five star restaurant. And that answers his un-asked question on who would pay.

He takes her hand and let’s her help him out of the seat. At her question, his eyes dart away a little, “Sure, if your willing to walk for about an hour or more.”

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As Hal begins to leave with her, Nathan Hawke finally takes the opportunity to introduce himself. Hal shakes hands with the former champ, who still seems to be in great shape, as they exchange pleasantries. Nate looks at Vai, not caring about the rep she has because all are welcome here in his place so long as they make no trouble. “Thanks for comin’ in. I hope you enjoyed yourself. My joint is always open to you and Hal here if you ever want to come back.”

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#92 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"I don't mind a walk with good company." Vai said.

She smiled at Nathan Hawke and shook his hand. "I loved it." She told him. "I'll be back here don't worry. I'll be sure to tell my mother about the place too, she's planning a trip to this city in the next few weeks." Vai glanced over at Hal and smirked a bit. "I'm ready when you are. We can walk, or we can take my car, it's parked just outside." She reached into a pocket and removed a set of twelve spark plugs. "I spent a lot of time visiting Gothic." She explained with a grin and slid them back into her pocket.

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#93 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: "That's great," Nate says with a twinkle in his eye, "I look forward to meeting her. Have a nice day."

Hal smiles, "I'm good to go and we can take your car." Then he notices the spark plugs she had showed him. He had to chuckle at that, "Want me to put those bag in for you?" Of course, he knows Vai is obviously capable but he figured he'd offer anyway. Nothing wrong with being a gentlemen. Like, for example, opening the door for her so she can leave the Ace of Clubs.

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#95 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"You can put them back in if you want..." She said as they made their way to the brightly colored super car. "But I think you might prefer it if I did." She said with a grin. She walked in front of the car and placed her hand on the hood. The vehicle ran a biometric scan and then a previously invisible electrical field flashed into view and vanished as the security system deactivated. She lifted the hood and removed the spark plugs from the hidden pocket in her clothing. She leaned over and worked to put them back in, with just her fingers. Her reasoning that he might prefer if she did it was two fold, first, he'd probably prefer not to be shocked and second, the view from where he stood would be far better than if he were installing the spark plugs himself...unless he was one of those guys that preferred engines to girls.

She was soon done and closed the hood. "Activate." She said. The engine roared to life as the vehicle started itself. "Don't worry, she won't bite." Vai said with a smile. "At least, not now."

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#96 Posted by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai:

And how right she was too, on both counts. But Hal neglected to say anything about that. As for the car itself, it was really nice. Even though Hal had a drivers license and could drive, he did not own a car at the moment. With his ring, he didn’t exactly need one.

Hal just smiles at her as puts his fingers under the door handle of the passenger side, “And why would your car bite me? Is she a little protective of you?” Hal says, winking teasingly even as he gets in and buckles his seat belt.

Hal hears a sound, so he looks out the window at sees a jet flying overhead. He looks on with longing. Some day, he’s going to have to get his wings back. But not today. But soon, he’s going to have to see if he there is a small plane he can buy.

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#97 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"Nah, I'm just protective of her." Vai said with a grin. Once they're both inside she started driving, relying on him for direction as to where to go and how to get to his apartment. "Just to be certain, you don't have someone waiting back home that's going to get super jealous right? I've run into that a few times and it's less than pretty." She said. The car rolled smoothly through the streets and Vai kept it at the speed limit, there were too many people around to risk anything faster.

I figure I'll stay over if he doesn't have anyone, have to invite him over once I get my place though, it's only fair.

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#98 Posted by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio
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#99 Edited by Green_SentinelX (176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vai: Hal gave her directions on where to go, but traffic meant that the drive was several minutes at least. But Hal didn't mind. At Vai's question, Hal's features took a sad turn as his thoughts turn to a lost love and the tragic way it ended. "No...no, you don't have to worry about that." He says almost too quietly. Pain itches itself on his face. Obviously, something very tragic happened, but Hal refuses to say what.

He will never forget that night, the night his girlfriend...No...best not to think about it. It still upsets him.

So Hal changes the subject, "But, fair warning, I do have a sister who has a bad habit of dropping by unannounced. Her name's Lois and it doesn't matter how many times I change the locks, she always manages to find her way in. I love her, though, and life wouldn't be the same without her. Most siblings fight a lot when they grew up, but me and my sister...I was always a little overprotective of her ever since our Uncle died. We've had our fair share of fights, but we get along for the most part. I think you'd like her."

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#100 Edited by Vai (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@green_sentinelx:

"Sister huh?" She asked as she continued to maneuver the car towards his apartment. "I've heard siblings fight all the time but at the end of the day they get a long. I don't have any siblings myself. I'm sure I'll like her though." She said. If he was convinced she saw no reason not to believe him. He certainly knows more about her and her attitudes than I do. She mused. "Tell me a little about her if you don't mind, so I know what to expect if she happens to drop by. Does she ever tell you when she's going to drop by or does she just do it at random to keep you on your toes?"