The Tomorrow Legion

Arctic micHELLeFIRE meets Witchhazel
Sparks fly!

pizza_by_ulbrek.jpg

“Mmm, this pizza is really good!”

Around a mouthful of the hot, cheesy stuff, Hazel replied, “Mhnmm, nom nom nom!”

Michelle grinned. “Now Hazel even witches shouldn’t talk with their mouths full.”

“Oh yeah? My mom always scolded me ’don’t cast while you’re eating!’”

Both girls shared a laugh and downed some HeroCOLA.

“Thanks for inviting me over and all. I mean, I know you wanna learn what you can from me and check out the jewelry…” Michelle did her best impression of the Queen of England and the Crown Jewels. “But it’s pretty cool to be able to just put all the heroic stuff aside and hang out.”

“I totally get you. Verge and I get to hang out sometimes because we have similar schedules. But not so much with the rest of the team. The Legion is up to its eyeballs in missing cats and muggings. In fact, lately it’s been busier than ever. It makes me nervous. I mean, despite all we’re doing it seems like things are actually getting worse.”

“Yeah,” Michelle replied a little dejectedly. “Some days I feel like I make a difference, but most days I just feel like I’m not even making a dent.”

“I think there’s a lot of big pieces of the puzzle moving about. Muggings and cats are small-time. Those are symptomatic of something bigger. Maybe the seeds of corruption have taken root and there are more small-time thugs who slip through the cracks because the big timer heroes have big-time fish to fry. Maybe we’re only seeing a very small part of a bigger picture. It makes me worried.”

She chewed her pizza thoughtfully.

“So what about you Hazel? I told you about my embarrassing teenager days and what brought me here. What’s your story?”

Killer_Prom_Queen_by_zano.jpg

“My story?” Hazel echoed. “It’s kinda depressing. I mean, I grew up as the most popular girl in school. The Prom Queen, like, three years in a row. I had this great boyfriend, an awesome car, and a loving family.” She swallowed hard. “Then I threw it all away to come to Century Station, live in a dorm, and beat up bad guys. Cool, right?”

Hazel looked across at Michelle’s reaction and the corners of her mouth upturned and slowly creased into a broad-brimmed grin.

“Naah! I had it pretty bad. Home-school, no friends, crappy part-time job at a book store, no car — I saved every last penny I could for a dirt bike…and an amulet of Negate Magic. My family kinda sucks — all magic-users. One day at the mall I looked into this mirror, freaked the fuck out at the cosmetics counter, and turned into…a monster. Then I beat the shit out of my mom. Kinda a typical Christmas in our family. My dad basically disowned me after the incident. My brothers…well, there’s only one whose capable and, like father like son.”

Michelle’s eyes went wide.

“It’s okay. I’m adopted.”

Michelle looked at you dubiously at first, then when you told the rest of the story her expression was more sympathetic. “Oh wow, I had no idea. At least you’re out of there now, right?” A thoughtful look crossed her face.

“What do you mean, you turned into a monster?”

secrets_4_by_tasastock-d5s28sj.jpg

“Well, I…” Hazel hesitated.

“Michelle, when you were fighting Antipode and I was on the prowl, you couldn’t see me because I cast the spell “Sight Unseen.” It’s something I’m very…self-conscious about. My ‘heroic’ alter-ego, doesn’t look…normal. It doesn’t look beautiful and heroic with tights and spandex and makeup and all that…stuff. My real name is Lashe’evadne Sycorax-Circe Griselda Duchesne. No one has ever actually called me Lashe. My friends would. I guess. But I don’t have any of them. I dunno. Everyone calls me Hazel because of the color of my eyes. And I’m growing to accept and even like the aphorism…Witch-Hazel. Maybe one day I’ll just be…Witchcraft."

Hazel cast a sidelong glance at Michelle to see the other girl looking a little confused.

“Sorry. I dunno. I tend to ramble when I’m nervous. My…other self. My TRUE self. Is…kind of scary. That’s why I was invisible. I know you saw me when we apprehended Antipode. Thank you for not running away scared. But I turn into this…uh, like hot, seductive B-movie actress who should be all scantily clad and stuff…but I’m covered in like Gandalf’s Wizard Robe with a crazy demonic mask of Darkness on my face and tattooed all over my body — everywhere you can see my skin, there are glowing floaty runes and symbols and magical…um, gibberish and gobbledygook. So you can imagine the first time that happened…um, I kinda ruined everyone’s Christmas. But now I’m really at peace with myself. I think I’ve accepted who I am…fully. Though it took a while. And I feel…whole. I feel really good. And I think things are starting to change for the better.” Hazel smiled and took another healthy bite of cheesy goodness.

“Well, that doesn’t sound too monstrous. I pictured something like a werewolf, or the villain Lionheart! What you described and what I saw the other day just looked like an intricate, if weird, costume.”

“So, will you tell me the story of how you and your girlfriends found these amulets and became your own super-hero team?”

She smiled. “It’s more embarrassing than cool. They’re my friends and we went through so much together, but we were definitely young kids with a wild imagination who had watched too many Saturday morning cartoons. The way we initially misinterpreted the amulets kind of became our trademark.” She strikes a pose and mimes an over-exaggerated casting position, then shouts “Mystic Ice Bind!” She makes another pose. “Flame Circle!” She cringes for a moment as one of her recent injuries just got stressed, then she gives a small laughs and continues talking as if nothing happened. “None of us really knew what we were doing. I’ve been studying for years and and I only understand the magic a little bit, myself.”

friends_2_by_tasastock-d5s29c0.jpg

She smiled, placed her plate on the table and leaned back in her chair. She got a far-away look in her eyes.

“How did my friends and I find our amulets and become a team? Well, it’s all by coincidence – or fate, if you choose to believe that. On a hike through the woods near my house I was attacked by a creature – at first I thought it was a rabid dog or something like that. I ran from it in a panic and literally stumbled over this amulet, sticking halfway up out of the ground. I stared at the creature approaching, then looked at what had tripped me. It was as if…”

She paused for a moment, remembering, and tried to place it into words.

“I felt like time slowed down at that moment, and I could clearly feel the presence and power of this amulet. Like it was calling to me, only it wasn’t literally saying or doing anything. I reached out and gripped the amulet in my hand while the creature ran for me in slow motion – everything was in slow motion. With the amulet in my hand it just felt right. I felt the magic flow through me and it lifted me up in the air, out of the way of the monster as it lunged at me.”

She leaned forward to open a new can of cola and leaned back again with it, sipping it as she talked.

“That seemed to break the ‘time-slowed down’ perception I had. I was shocked and exhilarated to be actually hovering up in the air! I knew I should’ve felt scared or worried, but it was just felt wonderful. As if I was always meant to be able to do that. Down below me the creature I thought was a rabid dog tried to leap up after me but couldn’t reach me. Then it did the damnedest thing – it leaped at a nearby tree and jumped from branches in that tree to higher branches in another tree, using them like a ladder or stairs to get high enough to reach me.”

“That’s when the magic words came to my mind. The power for magic and words to cast it suddenly flooded into me, and I knew what to do. A blast of ice magic to slow the creature down, and then some fire to entrap it, and finally a cold blast to finish it off. One after another I threw spells at it until it fell unconscious and the dark power that possessed it fled, leaving behind an unconscious stray dog.”

Michelle suddenly seemed to snap into focus, as if her flashback was done playing out before her eyes. “Oh no! I just rambled on and on there. I was the first one to find my amulet but a week later, another strange creature appeared. I still hadn’t figured out what the deal with my amulet was but I had kept it with me. When the next creature attacked it was in a more public place and it was chasing my friend Natale. She ran by me and without hesitating I activated the amulet’s power to subdue this creature also, but it ran away before I could finish it. Natale talked with me, amazed, and we went back to where the creature appeared. Once there Natale had a moment sort of like the one I had – or so she said. But she felt drawn to another amulet there. Once she grabbed it the creature returned and caught me by surprise. But Natale activated her amulet and in a flash managed to knock soak and then electrify the creature until it reverted back into an ordinary animal. Just like the first one did.”

She paused to take breath and think. “My other two friends were a similar story with their amulets. Since I was the first one to find my amulet the other three just looked to me for guidance and direction, so without meaning to I became their leader. It seemed like at least once a week an incident of some kind cropped up and put regular people in danger, so we banded together as a team to protect our hometown from what was going on.”

“Wow! That’s incredible! But at least those minor threats gave you some good practice honing your skills and using your new powers so you could deal with that evil being’s dream fragments. I still can’t believe you managed to trick it into returning to its home dimension. Hah!” Hazel paused thoughtfully. “Maybe we can trick Iron Mike into hiding back under a rock.” She grinned.

“So let’s get down to it, shall we? I’m really curious about how you cast these spells. It almost seems like the amulet isn’t just giving you powers but it’s bestowing you with actual arcane knowledge. Would you please describe for me again what you see in your mind when you cast a spell? When you use an ability from the
amulet?”


“Wow! I can’t believe this! So you mean that the amulets contain both the knowledge of spell casting and the power to cast them. When holding Antipode’s amulet I felt the energy contained therein and with a thought I could cast the any of the spells from the amulet. And your amulet works the same way!”

“Yep, it would appear so. Hazel, you’re so excited about this stuff.”

“Michelle, I don’t know what all these spells do but I am able to draw on the energy of the amulet to cast those spells. And, remember when we tested it out? I didn’t have any of the crazy side-effects that usually disrupt me. Also, I’m pretty sure I can draw on that pool of energy to cast my own magic…but I think that would be subject to the unintentional side-effects that plague my spell-casting.”

seven_deadly_sins___wrath_4_by_tasastock-d2dwus4.jpg

Michelle looked appraisingly at Hazel. “I’m not sure if your makeup works with the Amulet. It makes your eyes glow deep red. Like when Antipode was wielding it.”

“Ahh! Yeah, it doesn’t go with my eye-shadow. I didn’t wanna keep the amulet anyway…well maybe a little. But I find it fascinating to study! I’m kind of a nerd at heart,” she said sheepishly.

“Well it’s funny you said that because a friend of mine is kind of a spell-nerd too. He’s more of a scholarly wizard type and I think you two would get along great. He’s a lot more knowledgeable with this sort of thing than I am. Maybe I could setup a coffee date for you guys.”

“Oh would you?!?!” Hazel gushed.

“Of course.”

“Oh!!!! Thankyouthankyouthankyou!”

“C’mon, let’s keep trying. You’ve almost got Light Shit Up…although I really don’t think that’s what the spell is called.”

“Hey! I’m the scholarly type! I’m the one who gets to name the spells!”

“Whatever you say Hazel. But, I’m taking away the BoingoJOLT until you get this one down.”

sun_and_moon_13_by_tasastock-d5nfuwc.jpg


So, Matty, it didn’t take me long to come to the conclusion that Arctic Hellfire and I use magic in two totally different ways that really aren’t compatible at all. My magic is more formulaic and I’d almost say scientific…scholarly, while hers is more intuitive and, almost wild.

From my research and lore I looked up some other schools of magic and remembered something that dawned on me the day of the block-fire. When I was out there saving Hellfire and locking up Antipode I remembered something I learned from Gerhardt – something about other schools of magic and this, in particular, being something like ELEMENTAL WARLOCK magic. It’s fascinating, really! They don’t even define spells the same ways that we do so their spells are really difficult for me to follow. They are more like a series of “effects” that are strung together with…words and emotions. It’s very raw…very primal…and it can be very powerful! I’m going to spend the next few weeks with Michelle and learning as much as I can while imparting as much of my own knowledge as she wishes to learn.

sun_and_moon_4_by_tasastock-d5nfujp.jpg

The first two spells I’m trying to learn are “Light It Up” and “Dowse” — basically the opposite of Light it Up. Those are spells that have corresponding invocations for regular sorceresses…like me. The other spells I’d like to learn…well, since they don’t have corresponding invocations, we’re going to have to INVENT them. And with Michelle’s help I think I can translate a few of them over into actual spell-magic invocations! It’s all so exciting Matty! Maybe I really do have Gerhardt’s blood in me! It’s like this stuff is in my veins! Like I was BORN to discover magic!

I’ll keep you posted…

View
From the notes of Dr. Roarke
R.A.D.O.N. Project

Researcher:Dr. Theopholus Roarke
Project Notes: R.A.D.O.N. Device
Note Category: Personal Notes
Date: May 9, 20XX

The inspiration came to me, like most flashes of genius, in a dream. I had returned home from the legion’s laboratory where I had begun inspecting equipment with the most counter-intuitive design specifications I have ever seen in my professional career. I began to unwind with a glass of scotch and began to review some of the most recent journals in my study. The activities of the evening, which I shall eschew from mentioning, had left me in a particularly manic state of mind, but once allowed to relax, my body quickly succame to exhaustion and I fell deeply asleep in my chair.

In my slumber I envisioned myself as a soldier, a preposterous notion, fighting on a battlefield. Yet I abhor bloodshed, save for when necessarily, such as in clinical trials or research. However, the weapon I was using was not a standard firearm. My “bullets” as they were, were having the most interesting effects on my targets. For example, I shot at enemies as they approached and their bodies would begin to spasm and twitch before falling unconscious to the floor. A grenade knocking out communications.

I awoke quite energized and spend went to the lab the next day. While it would be inappropriate for me to create weapons to harm people, but to incapacitate? To be able to stop crime with a simple swarm of nanites! For far too long my research has been directed inwardly on what the nanites could do to enhance my own abilities, but if they can render metal to mush then what could they do to a central nervous system? Rather than using harmful gasses, tazers, or rubber bullets my nanite inspired weapons could be a new wave in non-lethal weaponry.

Programming will the the first step. Then I will have to develop effective delivery systems.

Note to self – locate sufficient testing subjects. Volunteers would be ideal as there is little benefit to animal trials.

View
Aftermath
Yup, you guessed it...

The morning after…was anything but pretty. I was rockin’ the sex-hair bed-head like I spent the last three days partying with Kid Rock only to spend the morning with Disturbed. Y’know, there’s no good music anymore. I really only listen to the “oldies” but what’s that say about me? I think all the members of Disturbed are dead now and Kid Rock is in cryo until they cure cancer. Or at least that’s what I heard. Linkin’ Park organized a mass suicide in protest of the anti-vegetarian laws. It’s like…all the good stuff happened way before I was born. That’s just not as depressing as it should be.

So I was on my way out to follow-up on a few leads I had generated in last night’s late-night net-diving frenzy when Spirit intercepted me.

“Hazel, a word before you go? I couldn’t help but notice a lot of net activity from you last night. Why were you researching divers and underwater salvage companies? Do you intend to do some sort of salvage operation on the wreckage of the ship? Do you really think that’s wise?”

Well today’s the day that the news will surface…or should at any rate. The SS Crescent Moon was supposed to be arriving at the Archipelago. Last night and this morning there was nothing unusual in the news.

Vigilance Voice," HAZEL! We Sunk It For A Reason!!!!!"

Hazel smoothly replies, “If that reason was to implicate the Tomorrow Legion by leaving 12 eye-witnesses alive and a super villain in a public hospital who can positively identify us…then point taken.” She raised an eyebrow at the interruption.

Hazel looked miffed. “Net activity? Really, Matt? You’re scoping my packets? First and foremost, I have nothing to hide. Research — it’s what I do. Here, I’ll demystify: Last night I delved deeply into the off-band news channels in the deep web. If anything was amiss or anything had been reported it’d have popped up there first. The INSTANT a major loss — $10M or more is reported to an insurance company it makes all kinds of waves. What we’re talking about here — alien technology or ultra-high tech international smuggling shit — rough guesses estimate a loss of more than 10x that — over $100M. That’s not mugging someone at gun-point and taking their lunch-money. Retaliation on that scale is like going to war. Get me? Secondly, what I do — how I act — it’s in the best interest of both the Tomorrow Legion and the people of Century Station. When those actions require approval or consultation you’re the first person I address. If you’re going to call me out on that in front of everyone then I’ll assume your preference is to make this entire discussion public.”

Addressing the entire Legion, Hazel puffs herself up to her full 5’6" height and begins, “Guys, last night we did something incredible. We accomplished something that I never would have thought possible. Hell! Iron Mike probably never would have thought it possible…not from us.” She cringed. "Guys, it’s still very fresh in our memories. The “incident” isn’t even on the news yet — that’s how “young” this thing is. We have no idea what the backlash is going to be. And, with the tools and resources at my fingertips — last night, while the Tomorrow Legion licked its wounds — Hazel pulled an all-night to ensure the INSTANT news broke that we’d be prepared to respond. Hazel, that’s right fellas, the little girl — the WITCH — she sleeps with one-eye-open for us all." Her red hair is frazzled and Hazel holds a hand out to Virgil’s solid arm to steady herself. She looks a little woozy…or over-tired. “The Tomorrow Legion just became more than a thorn in the big dog’s side. We just put our rag-tag motley crue super-hero club ON THE MAP. We just bought ourselves a big ol’ target — and some serious street cred and reputation.”

She stopped for a minute, looks at the floor, then looks around the room at the Tomorrow Legionnaires. “And…I’m scared.”

She let that sink in for a bit. Small tears welled up in her big eyes and she wiped at them, smudging her already haggard eye-shadow.

“You guys mean the world to me. This team — all of us — we risked it big and won even bigger. You guys are like…like, I dunno — my new family. I fit in better here…I like it better here than with my own family. I know you’re all adults and you knew the risks before signing up. I just. I dunno. I’d hate to see something bad happen…and know that I could have done something about it. I can’t rest until I’ve exhausted all the possibilities and all the leads and all the potential pitfalls. That’s just who I am. If it takes another few pizzas and a couple cases of Rockstars then I’m gonna surf the deep web and cover all my bases and make sure The Tomorrow Legion is ready for what comes. Because I firmly believe it isn’t a matter of whether or not the backlash…the retaliation…comes, but a matter of WHEN. We’ve got twelve scared mercs and one pissed off BEND-OVER-haul who got bent-the fuck-over-bawl. We accomplished our mission but I have to wonder…at what cost. Are we prepared to have the proverbial eye of big crime in the city — not just Iron Mike — but the powers that be…scope us out because we’re on the radar.”

“Matt, to address your point: I was researching underwater salvage, divers, welders, and equipment because I’m thorough. That kind of specialized trade — it’s rare — even in a city as large as Century Station. There’s only three guys who can do it on the scale we’re talking and one of those guys is in the South Pacific doing a busted oil derrick for the last three months. That leaves two guys. I wanna know who contacts them, from where, how they’re dispatched, how they’re setup, and I wanna know everything that is said in those emails or phone conversations. I gotta be honest, Matt, Virge…I’m tryin’ to think like a BAD-GUY. That’s how we stay one-step ahead and don’t get caught with our dicks…well, your dicks, in your hands. I…um, don’t seem to have that problem. Not that it would matter as I’m the only FUCKING ONE who didn’t put her face in everyone’s memory banks! Next time we shouldn’t even attempt stealth unless the team is equipped to execute it. Things worked out…this time. But if we had tried a full-frontal assault down at the docks with that crazy assassin bitch who tried to convert Diane to the Dark Side and who knows how things would have gone.”

“And, by the way, when those salvage guys return you better believe anything they pickup is gonna be at the top of my priority list. I wanna monitor their radios, their trucks, I wanna know exactly where that shit is going. Guys, I’m prepared for us to be ID’d by the mercs and Overbawl. I hope we’re ALL prepared for “someone” to claim that The Tomorrow Legion sunk a ship loaded with MEDICAL SUPPLIES that were desperately needed for the city’s poorest people who don’t have health insurance. I’m ready for the bad press. The public-relations nightmare. I’m ready for a fight — on our home turf or away. And I’m ready as fuck to face the public…to face Century Station…and show them how our heroism aborted a massive shipment of deadly high-tech weapons that would have turned these streets into a fucking WARZONE. Are we all ready for this? It’s coming. One way or another…it’s coming. Matt, the only contingency I’m not prepared for is the one where the incident stays un-reported, the wreckage goes unsalvaged, and everything gets swept under the rug in radio-silence. The lulling of TTL into a false sense of security — that’s what I’m not prepared for. But I know it could come. And I’m fucking scared."

Hazel plopped herself down, took a deep breath, and her eyes darted about for a half-empty can of HERO-COLA — she had been nursing it since breakfast. She slowly looked around the room and absently wondered, “shit, was I speaking Dragonese?”

Bogart stands up on a chair back and pipes up “A guy like Iron Mike is not going to wage a public war against you guys. His very nature is to live in the shadows. I also doubt he’s in business for revenge, but I will say his balance sheet is not adding up and he’s going to come looking to collect on the difference.”

He jumps down to the floor, “I don’t have that kind of dough. I’m out. Don’t call me.” Bogart flips a coin to Spirit and walks out.

Spirit catches the coin, looks at it in surprise, and palms it. He gives a slight, knowing nod to the detective as he leaves. He turns then to look at the other Tomorrow Legionnaires who have gathered, and sighs.
“I didn’t come down here to ‘call you out,’ Hazel,” Spirit says to her. “If you are investigating leads to help mitigate the situation then I’m not here to stop you.”

Vigilance watches with a sad face as Bogart makes his way towards the door. Pulls the bag of almonds from his pocket, takes one for himself, “Hey Bogart, take care buddy and keep in touch, catch”, and Vigilance tosses the bag over to Bogart.

Vigilance expression changes from sad to a stone face stare as he changes his focus to Hazel, “Lead the way.”

You don’t hear the almond hit the floor or see it anywhere if you look for it

“Sorry to see you go Bogart. You will be missed.” Hazel grimaced. “Verge, there’s no Leader at the head of a Round Table. I’ll do my part — the same as any other Legionnaire. I want what we all want: A safer, cleaner Century Station.”

There’s a small murmur of agreement from the others who are around – including Spirit.

Okay, so after things “settled” with Matt and Hazel’s public discussion, he and Hazel walk away to the Legion meeting room in order to have the private meeting that Hazel requested. VIgilance follows.

The meeting room is much larger than it needs to be, currently. It’s designed to accommodate at least 20 people comfortably with a large conference table, monitors on the far and side walls and the capability for a holographic display in the center of the table. None of that is being utilized at the moment, and it’s just Hazel, Vigilance, and Spirit in the room.

“All right Hazel,” Spirit says. “What did you want to discuss privately?”

“Matt, do you trust me? Have I ever acted in a manner contradictory to the well-being of Century Station or the safety and greater good of the Legion?”

“Verge, care to weigh in?”

“Of course not Hazel,” Spirit responds mildly. “But you also don’t normally seem so tired and…” He trails off for a moment, as if he’s searching for the right word. “…haggard. I can tell the last couple days were very stressful for you – especially you. You can’t blame me for showing some concern.”

“Matt, I don’t blame you for showing concern. In fact, to the contrary, I appreciate it. Look, I said my peace out there in front of the Legionnaires. I am genuinely concerned for everyone’s safety. Are we capable? Sure.”

He looks at Virgil, as if for confirmation, or maybe to hear what he has to say in response to Hazel’s invitation to him to speak.

Virgil," Hazel, I trust and believe you are thinking for the well-being of Century Station and also the good of the Legion.

That is not my question(s). My question is what is the best course of action to take? I have concerns looking for
“riggers” will put up white flags which we may already be past. Why would we want to raise what is left of the vessel? Between the nanites eating it from the inside out and then the explosion I am not sure there is anything left. I can see the concern about the mercenaries talking, but they were in free territory and defending the intrusion of their ship. I have a fear that the man in the hospital has already sent up a flag since I am certain their are informants placed there….."

Virgil pauses as if a new thought comes to mind, but refrains from speaking as he contemplates further thoughts.

“Verge, I can appreciate your concerns. We’re all concerned right now. The best course of action is going to be difficult to find. I think there are multiple courses of action that can be taken and the direction I’ve chosen risks almost nothing and potentially gains a LOT. Raise what is left of the vessel? Where did you get that idea? I told you — as I told the Legion — that I want to monitor these salvage operations and I want to know who’s calling them, who’s emailing them, what they find down there, who wants it back, where it’s going once its salvaged, where the money is coming from, which bank accounts, etc. If we can get Matt’s contact to corroborate more of this information then we’re already a step ahead.”

“Verge, the way I see it. The white flags are already there. And they’re hanging right above the Tomorrow Legion HQ. This one’s a foregone conclusion, buddy. We’re found. But, in my mind, that was never in question. Whether or not we can handle the repercussions of our actions IS. And Matt, here, seems to think we’re capable enough. And he condoned the mission. And he blessed our cause. And he’s had our backs from the start. So if he’s confident TTL is capable…then that’s good enough for me. For now…”

Spirit just says, “Well then, I better stop holding you up. It sounds like you have a lot planned: Phone taps, computer hacks and software to install, surveillance, shadowing, research…” He trails off. “Well, I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know. Just… try to pace yourself Hazel.”
He prepares to leave.

“Like you said and we all know, if we haven’t already drawn all this attention onto us then by tomorrow or the day after we will have. I do trust you guys, I did condone the mission – I was even right there with you guys. Just be careful, don’t do anything alone and watch each others backs.”

Hazel put a hand on his shoulder, tugging at him gently as he turned to leave. “Look, Boss, you’re right. I’m frazzled. How did you put it? Haggard? Yeah, I’m running ragged. I’ve been a little paranoid…reclusive (this is part of her insanity, just a reminder), and I really appreciate your concern.” It’s probably a little awkward but Hazel gives him a hug and lets go before it gets weird. She then turns around and punches Virgil on the arm. Let’s go stealth-suit Ninja master — I’m gonna need your help."

Virgil gives a brief smile and then goes back to serious. “Hazel, I want to pass an idea past you……..And I think Spirit may have been a just a little bit sarcastic regarding hacking, wire tapping, surveillance…….not that we are not going to do that….”

…to be continued!

View
A Three Hour Tour
Can't you see my bikini? Wizard robe in the way? More's the pity.

runewitch_24_by_tasastock-d3csp60.jpg

Matty,

I’m at a loss for words. I had only gotten about two days of recuperation when I got a text from Spirit asking me to meet him at the TTLHQ for a big agency-wide meeting. I was gearing up for my follow-up with Michelle — that’s Arctic Hellfire to you. Normally, I wouldn’t spare it a second thought. Maybe someone left the stove on. Maybe that wee-tod, Zeau, put metal in the microwave again. It could be a ton of things. For the most part, living at the TTLHQ was like living in a big dorm where all your roommates are…well, SUPER! Bottom line: It probably didn’t even pertain to me since I’m always so quiet and mindful and respectful of others…

This time, I couldn’t have been further from the truth. Spirit came to us and informed the Legion that he had an insider tip — an informant whose name he wouldn’t disclose — that a massive shipment of high-tech weapons was coming in and going to be off-loaded at the Archipelago docks in two days. Holy shit! Could this be the opening we’ve been waiting for? Spirit wanted EVERYONE in the Legion to be on-board because we were going to encounter very heavy resistance, heavily armed, and out-manned / out-gunned to the extreme. This operation could go tits up on a moment’s notice! Okay, okay, settle down Hazel. Just breathe. Even though it happened two days ago it still gets my blood boiling and my heart thumping. Everyone put their hands into the mix like one big happy football-team family and Virgil lead us in the CHEER! Hoooah! But I quickly approached Spirit after the hooplah and hullabaloo to pick his brain.
“Hey, Boss, mind if I beg your ear and bend it for a word?”

“Sure Hazel. What’s up?”

“How well do you trust this intel?”

“I trust the source.”

“Will you give me a name?”

“I promised confidentiality.”

“I respect that. And I’m afraid that this is exactly the kind of scenario a sneaky little bitch would orchestrate to force the Legion out into the open with it’s pants down. Now, I’m not shy — especially around strangers — but I have no intention of being caught with our proverbial dicks in our hands…will all due respect, boss.”

“I see where you’re coming from. I’d give you my word, Hazel, if I thought it would help but somehow I doubt it will.”

spn__research_by_blackbirdrose-d5uicek.jpg

“I’m glad we’re seeing eye-to-eye. I’ll do my own research. Independent of the Legion and without any reference or connection to you or your contact. But before we go all out and make these preparations I need to verify the veracity of this information.”

“A team is prepping for an on-site recon mission. The Doctor and Diane will go in inconspicuously and report back. You’ve got a day to do your homework before we have to act.”

“That should be plenty of time.”

“I hope so.”

I left Spirit and went RIGHT to the War Room Operations Deck. Vigilance was already there…um, doing something wrong. I sat down at the computer and began digging into the deep web — looking for shipping logs, manifests, cargo holds, customs declarations, itineraries, ports of call, dockmasters, harbor police, coast guard reports, crew rosters, etc. And it took me almost 18 hours, 3 pizzas, and a case of Nitrous energy drinks to confirm that Spirit’s contact had, indeed, given us good intel…very good. I was able to find it’s last port slip and we used that and some advanced math to make the shipping lane estimation and figure out just how far into international waters it was at that moment — and how many miles off the Archipelago it would be when we hit it with a preemptive strike.

hover_car_by_rofelrolf-d66b1d5.png.jpg

(I had Verge take a quick pic of me on my phone chillin’ next to Matt’s hover car)

Virgil suggested that we board the boat before it ever even pulled into dock at Century Station. It was a sound plan and we had Spirit driving us in his hover car, under the cover of a magical Haze of Darkness, to secret us to the boat’s rendezvous point. Very risky business! It did, however, catch them off guard and significantly lessen their defenses — probably saving the lives of a few TL members in the process.

_minecraft__cargo_ship_by_yazur-d6emorv.png

The details of the battle are a little vague. After my first casting of Shadow Meld I began to actually SINK through the floor before I got control of the spell. Mentally, I was able to remain focused enough to keep myself…erm, tangible. But when we debarked the hover car I nearly slipped right through the deck of the damn vessel! Something very scary was going on with my magic! And that’s twice that these shadow / darkness spells have been acting weird. Well, weirder than usual. My shimmering armor, surprise, actually turned into a GIANT SUIT OF SHIMMERING ARMOR…instead of being, you know, invisible. Sigh. The Darkness followed me as I regained my footing on the boat and I dropped it in favor of my sight-unseen spell which wouldn’t impair my companions as badly as the cloud of darkness. I still kept to the shadows and they seemed to wrap themselves around me as if…almost tangible…or alive with a life of their own.

a9a9bea0f3566cffde55972bf3334b34-d4834a2.png

I was a little scared because this hadn’t really happened before — although something similar occurred the other day when I rescued Arctic Hellfire. I was a little nervous…and a little disoriented…but it felt natural, and comfortable.

shadow_by_anikakinka-d5xkvpj.jpg

As soon as we boarded the ship and my darkness was cancelled the laser cannon opened fire on Spirit but he evaded with his expert driving skills. We were worried our ride my get blown from the sky but Vigilance took matters into his own hands by ripping a door off the nearest cargo crate and hurling it discus style at the laser energy cannon turret. It neatly sheared off something…um, blinking and important looking and the thing was out of commission — but not before it got a few more shots off at our boss. Diane wasted no time in putting two arrows into the nearest threat. Her efficacy is a thing of wonder…and it’s a little scary sometimes. The Doctor began playing leap frog amid the giant cargo containers and looking for other targets. I calmly approached the nearest merc, invisible, and blasted him with a magical net trap — but he must have sixth sense or something because he narrowly avoided what would have been a perfectly aimed shot! Ah well, live and learn. I bypassed him and left the fighting to the more aptly combat-trained members of The Tomorrow Legion and began to make my way toward the bridge.

barghast_9_by_tasastock-d4cegyt.jpg

The next thing I know I hear “everybody jump!” over the radio and, without thinking, my feet lifted off the ground and there was a giant rumbling shock-wave of rolling metal undulating the deck beneath me. Whoa! Was that Virgil? Holy shit! What did he do? I didn’t have time to dwell on it because the next thing I knew, Doc was leaping tall buildings in a single bound and, with baseball bat in hand, hurled himself at the bridge window. That drew my attention to the window where an arrow now protruded from the glass and spider-cracks stretched out in every direction. A big guy covered in robotics equipment and some kind of shimmering field looked out at the mayhem and calmly loaded his gun in some kind of a stare-down competition with…was that Diane? CRASH!!! The big guy kicked out the window only seconds before the doctor slammed into him with the baseball bat and took PLASMA to the chest simultaneously! Holy shit! From my vantage I was able to blanket the entire bridge cockpit area in a spooky horrific aura that scared the other henchman shitless but left Mr. Roboto and The Doctor unafraid…if a little unnerved.

Retro_Robot_by_JubbenRobot.jpg

In the next instant I had a split SECOND to register a flying Preposterous comet entangled with Mister Roboto and they streaked out of the bridge like a meteor! I did my best to fire off a magical seine but it wasn’t fast enough. Gah! I’ve gotta practice my targeting more! It seems to be more useful than my “gun” practice these days…if less practical. Anyway, I charged up to the bridge but I did see Diana wrenching the scuttles and hatches leading below-decks. She must be worried about the announcement over the P.A. system that, while in a language we couldn’t understand, probably meant, “(click) Ahhh…this is the captain speaking, we have reached a cruising altitude of WAKETHEFUCKUPWE’REBEINGATTACKED.” But my Russian is spotty at best. I once dated a Russian guy actually. Kind of stuffy.

reference___gun_1_by_tasastock-d6hry3y.jpg

Anyway, I knew I could best serve the Legion’s cause if I slowed this boat down and stopped her dead in her tracks! I spared a moment to analyze the high-tech equipment in the captain’s bridge but it was completely beyond me. I figured out how to turn the engines off but I didn’t have time to decipher anything more so…that’s when my ACE came in handy. A 050 cal automatic handgun does wonders – even with single rounds – for breaking electronics — especially the really expensive shit.

Outside it looked like the rest of the team had gotten the super-villain under control — and by subdued I mean shot through the heart…and Diane’s to blame. She gives BOWS….a bad name! Seriously, we need to find the goddess a hobby. She’s got so much pent up aggression and hostility. It’s…erm, charming in a way…but totally uncool. She really got into it with Verge on the way back. Spirit kept quiet and let the kids squawk but I was just thankful to be alive. Overhaul was kind of a push-over without his fancy gimmicks and high-tech force fields and…robot machinery stuffs. I shudder to think how this might have gone down had it transpired on the Archipelago Docks and with more of Iron Mike’s henchmen there. Especially that Amaya woman who confronted Diane earlier. Oh! I didn’t even tell you. Iron Mike tried to bribe Diane to just walk away for $150,000 – he did so through his crazy ninja assassin chick lieutenant, Amaya…but the goddess wasn’t having any of it.

runewitch_11_by_tasastock-d3csmqj.jpg

Ah well…I’ll TTYL Matty, I’ve gotta get some rest. Big day in the morning. I’ve got a meeting with an underwater recovery specialist. He does reclamation, repair, and excavation for oil companies and prospecting. Very highly recommended by super pricey. The good news is he’s got his own crew and carries all his own insurance. I’m hoping he’ll take the job. Daddy Warbucks, er…Spirit has got deep pockets but I hope he doesn’t BALK when he sees the bill.

Ciao!

x_pressionette_34_by_tasastock-d2cg2r3.jpg

View
Virgil's Log #4
Virgil meets Vigilance

Spirit Dr Preposterous Hazel Huntress Vigilance Overhaul

Long overdue update…..

Spirit called a quick meeting of all Tomorrow Legion active members. It is the first time I can remember him calling all hands on deck. Spirit had Intel that a huge shipment of firearms and heavy weapons were in route to the Archipelago Harbor in a couple days and we had very little time to prepare. He wanted everyone in.

I don’t usually question Spirit. I follow as I am directed, but something inside me said TRAP!!!!! From the reaction of my team mates they had similar thoughts although the newer members or not so active seemed pretty gun-ho.

Spirit looked at me directly and asked if I were in or out since I did not say either. I did not answer other than I thought it was a trap to get everyone out of HQ and get the advanced rifle we had in the “Bright Room”. How did we know the ship would not be just pallets and no weapons?

I brought up the images in my Goggle Glasses under the Satellite view of the port. I tried to bring it up on the bog screen for everyone to discuss, but alas I could not do anything right today. It has been one of those days for the last few. Not sleeping well and working long hours is not helping.

Diane brought to our attention she was approached by one of Iron Mike’s Lieutenants about poking her nose around his business ordeals and offered money to leave. The money offered was to be a couple hours after this shipment was to arrive at the same port!

Doctor Preposterous & Diane went to gather information about the harbor and tier where the ship was told to dock through Spirit’s informants. Meanwhile Hazel had the same thoughts as myself to do some searching online. I just can’t seem to do dam thing with a computer today (yesterday). Feel like I am wearing mittens.

I let Hazel drive the computer before I smash the dam thing.

Hazel finds the ship information including the dockets, how many personnel, and the established route. Several “fake” companies known for being fronts for weapon smuggling all on one ship. You would think the UN or Navy would be all over this ship. There’s only one thing that can be done to prevent this ship from making port and releasing it mechanisms of death to the unworthy. I don’t share my thoughts with my team mates. The crew must be taken off the ship and the ship must be sent to Davie Jone’s Locker.

Several hours pass when Diane & Doc return from scouting. They go over their finding at the port and again it smells of trap to me. I suggest to the group about boarding the ship at see to inspect. If we found weapons to stop the ship and have the event on our “terms”. I just did not share that those “terms” included sinking a ship even if I had to puncture the hull with my fists in several spots.
The team agrees to doing a night/morning drop and even Spirit is on board with the idea. Spirit agrees to give transport with the hover car while Hazel keeps a “shadow” over it since at night time it would be exceptionally difficult to see the hover car. Can’t see out the car either! It sucked!

Diane, Dr. Preposterous, Hazel & I jumped out of the hover car and onto the deck of the ship while the hover car flew over the ship all of us landing in different spots scattered among the shipping containers. Spirit immediately began to take on firing shots from some “super laser” atop of the Bridge of the ship plus the small weapons being fired from the guards on duty. Yup, this is the right ship.

The team had some silly idea that we were going to get on this ship stealthy like. I did not want to break their hopes, but um, yeah, stealthy? We are not trained Navy SEALS guys. This boarding was going as expected to me and I was just happy not to be a landing under fire. Priority one is to take out the defenses.

Doc wanted me to be quiet and then radio’d to Spirit even though they decided we should be radio silent. Face palm moment.

Meanwhile that laser is firing away at our only ride back to land.

I rip a shipping container door off. That got everyone’s attention on me so the team could go to work. The door gave a bit of a fuss coming off the hinges, but man did it like being thrown! Right through that laser on the Bridge and got a couple more goofy looking antennee things too.

At this point I guess Doc decided being next to the beacon of here we are is not the best place to be and he was gone. Good cause that was the plan to get all these thugs after me. Unfortunately there only seems to be one with some automatic weapon coming up to bear on me.

I’ve always wanted to do this.

marketing-automation-superhero-hulk-smash.jpg

No, really.

Punch the floor hard and watch things fall.

The Deck Almost Gave Way! Luckily I had the thought to tell the team to “Jump Now!” before I punched the deck. As expected the gunman was no longer on his feet and a few shipping containers were now in the drink and a few others fell over.

I think I heard the clapping of dolphins in the water saying it was a good one! And then some upset whales about me disturbing the peace.

Time to deal with the punk holding the gun so I start moving toward him. Unknown to me another mercenary had come around the corner and now had my flank. Doc pounced on him out of no where but not before the merc got what felt like a couple dozen rounds out of his machinegun. It hurt. Doc threw the merc over board and all the mercs were wearing life vests. I’ve never been shot before and I don’t care for it although it surprisingly did not slow me down. Once I got my hands on the squid close to me I did the same.

The rest of the team are focused on the bridge with what appears to be another Super-Villian. I had hoped the personnel of the ship would focus on me and not notice the rest of the team, but evidently I have failed…..again.

While the team was engaged with the bridge crew & Villain, I began to tear into the doorless container to inspect what it contained. Boxes & boxes of machineguns and heavy weapons stocked full! At this point Doc came crashing into the deck with the Villian next to the container. The villian somehow got moving again with some sort of jet pack hurling towards the edge of the ship where he corrected himself over the water. I began throwing boxes and guns at the outlaw. Meanwhile Doc was up for a game of ball and hit a home run that sent the Villain into the water. It was Awesome!!!! Well Done Doc!!!

Diane joined us up front covering our flank while Doc & I ripped further into the container until the Villian made his way back out of the water and began firing on us with some huge fireballs from a tiny gun.

Doc & I began using everything in the container to throw at the Villain. While DOc & I had him distracted, Doc told Diane to hit the Villain’s belt buckle which appears to be his force field generator.

Diane made her mark easily and now Doc & I tried to knock the Villain out of the air before he would get away with more contents of the container. Before we could stop him, Diane left an arrow go straight through his heart!

I was so angry at Diane! Through defending her actions against the Shadowman with Bogart I had come to the realization we are not the Law nor the Judge and Jury. I even told Diane about it and she agreed and now she did this! How could I have defended her? I am sorry Bogart.

After a few choice words with Diane, I tied a rope to the deck and threw it over board and dove in after our Villain. Luckily the ship was not moving which I came to find out Hazel had taken out the bridge controls.

Somehow I found our Villain sinking and was able to get him up to the surface and began climbing the rope back to the deck. The big surprise at this point was about half way up Diane began to help pull on the rope to get us back on deck. She stood at the edge staring at us for a good while beforehand.

I don’t know CPR or any medic stuff. I need to learn so I can help people. Thank goodness Hazal appeared and got the Villain breathing again.

While we were attending the Villain, the rest of the crew had shown up and seeing their boss on the ground being worked on they gave themselves up. Doc directed us to get the crew onto the life boats. It appears Doc & I had the same thoughts about sinking the ship except his method was much more eloquent than mine.

Spirit appears with the hover car on the deck and we all load up with the Villain going directly to the hospital.

Spirit, Hazel, Doc, Diane, and I get in a heated conversation about Diane’s actions. Spirit believes I took things too far putting Diane’s bow out the window. If I was not worried about the backlash of breaking the bow may kill Diane I would’ve snapped it into many pieces and dropped it into the ocean to never be found again.

The ship began to list in the water before it exploded going to its watery grave. Those underground weapons will not make port and into the criminals hands. We had done well no matter what the future price may be for the Legion.

The Villain is in intensive care under constant watch from the Legion at the hospital. He is said to make a recovery.

View
Volume 1 - Issue 4
The Tomorrow Legion OVERHAUL-ed!
  • Spirit called together all members of the Tomorrow Legion for an important meeting. Once assembled, he informed them of a tip he received from an informant: Iron Mike was scheduled to receive a major shipment of weapons in just over two days’ time. Spirit verified the info and traced the arrival of the ship to Pier 19A in the Archipelago. He requested every member’s help to stop this shipment of weapons from reaching the streets. All members agreed and plans commenced.
  • Vigilance and Hazel grilled Spirit for more details. Why not involve the police or The Centurions? The Archipelago, he told them, is a unique area of Century Station where law enforcement technically has no jurisdiction. He knew The Centurions, constrained as they are by regulations, would be unwilling to ambush the delivery directly. Local police of course had the same restrictive guidelines, but the additional concern that he didn’t know who in the police could be trusted – local crime lords have numerous dirty cops on their payroll and for this mission to succeed, they needed the element of surprise.
  • Unsatisfied with just taking Spirit’s word Hazel demanded the informant’s name and the information which was provided. Spirit wouldn’t give up the informant but he gladly provided the information so Hazel and Virgil could run down the information in their own way in order to verify it and help ensure that this wasn’t some elaborate trap.
  • Dr. Preposterous and Diane went to the pier in question to do a little reconnaissance. They each were transformed/empowered but they were not in their heroic costumes so that they could “blend in” a little better. Each of them took stock of vantage points, good areas to install surveillance gear, and other logistical data which would aid them in working out a plan for action two night’s hence.
  • The other Tomorrow Legion members each began to enact their own preparations behind the scenes.
  • Hazel and Vigilance were successful in using the information Spirit provided to track down the ship, the “official” shipping manifest and a list of its crew members. They traced the companies listed as involved and were able to verify their criminal connections. As they put the data together they reached the same conclusion – this was a massive shipment of weapons about to come into the city, and Iron Mike’s crew was going to be the one receiving it.
  • Dr. Preposterous started working on making some high-tech, miniaturized surveillance devices and a receiver for them, with the intention of returning to Pier 19A and installing them in innocuous locations.
  • Diane, Hazel, Dr. Preposterous and Vigilance met and began to discuss ideas and strategies in earnest. Together they conceived a bold new plan: While the ship was still in transit to Century Station, sneak on board and reconnoiter the shipment and crew. While they all agreed on the basic premise of the plan (to sneak onto the ship while it was still in international waters), they differed somewhat in their end goals. But with time swiftly running out they convinced Spirit to fly them out to the ship in the Legion hovercar.
  • The five of them set out while it was still dark. Hazel used magic to cloak the hovercar in darkness and they approached low to the water to avoid radar detection. When the four were ready Spirit swiftly maneuvered the hovercar above the ship so the four heroes could jump down onto it. Spirit then flew the car away, intending to wait a safe distance away before called by the Legionnaires for pick-up.

Cargo_Ship.jpg

  • As soon as the Legionnaires disembarked and the car became visible, however, a strange tech turret atop the bridge began firing lasers at the car. Spirit deftly dodged them as he sped away.
  • Diane broke her invisible concealment and fired arrows at the Port watch. It took two shots but she dropped him with no retaliation. Hazel stayed concealed and tried to magically ensnare the Starboard watch but missed him. She left him anyway and continued on toward the bridge.
  • In the instant Dr. Preposterous launched from the hovercar he put his enhanced senses to use and was able to accurately pick out where the other awake crew members on deck were. Upon landing he headed towards them in order to take them out swiftly. Vigilance, deciding that stealth was no longer an option, ripped the door off one of the cargo containers and tossed it like a giant, misshapen discus at the laser which was firing on Spirit. Virgil managed to not only take out the turret, but a few additional antennas as well, unknowingly crippling the ship’s communication abilities.
  • The watch standers on deck congregated towards the noise that Vigilance made. When the first one came into his view Vigilance told his teammates over the radio to jump. Then he leaped into the air and landed a massive, earth-shaking super punch into the deck, shaking the entire ship! This created a deep depression in the deck, rattled loose all the containers within about 100 feet of him (spilling some over the side into the water) and knocked several of the armed watch standers off their feet.
  • Dr. Preposterous leapt after the (now knocked down) crew members coming after Vigilance and between him and Vigilance they tossed each one overboard – after making sure they were wearing safety vests, of course. One managed to take a few shots at, and hit, Vigilance with his automatic rifle before joining his friends in the ocean. Injured but not down, Vigilance joined Dr. Preposterous in turning his attention towards the aft of the ship.

Overhaul on the Bridge.png

  • After Diane took out the Port watch she set her sights on the bridge and noticed two crew members – one steering the ship and another trying to use communications gear. But between them was a man dressed like a super, taking careful aim with a pistol of some sort through the bridge window at the deck below.
  • Diane fired an arrow at the man but only managed to crack the glass between them. The man then kicked the glass out and fired at her. A large plasma ball, larger than should have been possible by the barrel of the gun, shot through the air at Diane but she dodged and retaliated, firing arrows back at the man. The arrows seems to bounce off a skintight force-field surrounding him.
  • With his enhanced eyesight Dr. Preposterous noticed the man’s belt spark and flash when the force field absorbed the energy of the arrow, and he relayed that to the rest of the team. Then he grabbed his baseball bat and leapt through the air at the man. He was hit in mid-air by another plasma ball and though it was a strong attack, it didn’t knock him off-course and the Doctor flew through the window and put all his momentum behind a massive swing.
  • The crew member on the comms panicked and sent out a cry for help over the ship’s P.A., alerting the rest of the crew that they were being boarded and attacked! Though none of the Tomorrow Legion members there could understand the language used to communicate, they understood the meaning.
  • Invisibly Hazel watched the Doctor fly through the window and engage the super on the bridge. She sought to aid him and cast a spell of Fear over the area of the bridge. The Doctor and the super both resisted it, but the other two crewmembers weren’t so lucky and they fled the bridge in a panic.
  • Dr. Preposterous decided to grab onto the villain and leap out of the window with him, towards the bow of the ship. The villain however activated his own concealed jet pack, held on to the Doctor in response and began to fly them off of the ship and out over the water. The Doctor managed to create an aerodynamic profile that caused them to speed down to the deck instead of flying straight.
  • The crash and the momentum hurt the Doc, but caused the villain to fly right off the side of the ship, out of control. As the villain tried to correct his bearings the Doctor grabbed a baseball he brought and, using the bat, smashed the baseball hard enough at the villain that it knocked him off course again and right into the water.
  • This bought them a few moments to breathe. Hazel entered the (now empty) bridge and managed to figure out how to stop the ship, but couldn’t figure out how to use any of the other controls. It didn’t help that there were strange, advanced technological devices all over the place, hooked into various equipment. She pulled out her own massive pistol and began firing it at the control, completely wrecking them and sparking an electrical fire on the bridge. While she dealt with that, she missed hearing what happened next due to temporarily deafening herself with her gunfire.
  • Diane took some measures to help ensure it took longer for the rest of the crew to make it outside from below-decks by using her own impressive strength to warp some of the doors, preventing them from being able to open.
  • Vigilance inspected some of the crates in the open and skewed containers and sure enough, found them loaded with plenty of military-grade firearms. Enough to arm a small city!
  • With a splash and a roar of jets the villain emerged from the water and flew up level with the Legionnaires. He began to fire at them with his pistol but the three on deck (Vigilance, Dr. Preposterous and Diane) counter-attacked. Vigilance tossed weapon after weapon at him from one of the crates. The Doc took careful aim and smashed another baseball at him, and Diane of course fired her arrows at him. The villain retaliated by firing several plasma bolts at the group but he only managed to slag some of the shipping crates.
  • With the Doc’s superhuman eyes and deduction skills he directed Diane to fire her arrows at the belt the man wore. Sure enough, a direct hit damaged it enough that the force-field protecting him dropped away. The next thing he had to deal with was an entire crate of the weapons being hurled at him, courtesy of Vigilance. Another baseball smashed into him, knocking him for a loop but then the coup de grace hit.
  • Diane took careful aim and with practiced skill, launched an arrow straight through the villain’s chest into his heart. With a sickening look of panic and failure on his face, his jetpack gave out and he fell back down into the ocean. Only this time, he didn’t come back up.
  • Vigilance had a heated argument with Diane over what she did but they didn’t argue for long; Vigilance grabbed a rope and dove into the water to try and pull the villain back out. Though the weight of his technology had caused the villain to sink, Vigilance managed to get a hold of him and pull him back to the surface. Surfaced, he began to climb the rope with the unconscious (dead?) villain. About halfway up Diane finally lowered her bow and arrow and helped to pull them aboard.
  • The drama unfolding didn’t concern Dr. Preposterous at the moment. With the villain vanquished he set his intellect towards a different challenge – sinking the ship. He considered several mundane methods but then recalled the extremely versatile supply of nanites he kept on him to supply him with his powers. Surely it would be child’s play to reprogram a few batches in order to bore through the metal of the ship and explode upon contact with the water? He pulled out a small, specialized computer and began to do just that.
  • Neither VIgilance nor Diane had any skill in applying emergency medical aid. They asked the Doc but he couldn’t help them, either. Finally they got through to Hazel, whose hearing had finally recovered enough, and she informed them she had some training as a paramedic and could be there in a moment. With the bridge fire out, she headed over to the rest of the team.
  • At this point the remainder of the crew finally made it above decks. Though they were heavily armed they hesitated and stopped when they saw the mess of deck and their boss lying dead in the center of it, surrounded by the super-powered boarders. One of the Heroes told them to drop their weapons and surrender. With only a brief moment to think they all made the decision to quit while they were still alive.
  • Knowing what the Doc’s plan was, Vigilance and Diane herded them into the life boats while the Doc finished reprogramming his nanites. Hazel, still invisible, tended to the villain and managed to stabilize his life – but they had to get him to a hospital and proper medical facilities if they wanted to keep him alive. Diane wasn’t too worried about it but Vigilance and Dr. Preposterous both quickly agreed with Hazel. They radioed Spirit to inform them of what had occurred so far and asked him to come get them.
  • Once the crew of the ship (minus their leader) was safely lowered into the water and sailing away from the ship, Dr. Preposterous finished his nanite reprogramming. If he was successful, these machines would consume the metal of the ship, store any energy they came upon, and once they reached water they would use that energy to explode. He estimated that six batches of these nanites spread throughout the ship would be enough. He leaped around the vessel, releasing his nanites upon the shipping containers and watching them go to work.
  • The nanites did their job – too well, in fact. It seemed something with the programming went wrong and the nanites began to reproduce as they bored through the ship, consuming far more material than initially planned. The very structure of the ship was becoming unstable and it was about to sink much faster than anticipated. That’s when Spirit arrived in the hovercar and they all crowded back in, leaving room for the critically injured and comatose villain.
  • Diane and Vigilance had another argument on the way back over their differing viewpoints towards killing. Vigilance managed to get her bow from her and threatened to drop it out of the car into the ocean. A fight nearly broke out before Vigilance was reminded that his actions here might negatively impact the patient. He gave Diane back her bow.
  • About a half mile from the ship six quick explosions in rapid succession rocked the water, and what was left of the ship quickly crumpled in upon itself and sank beneath the waves.
  • Coming back to Century Station they flew to the Hospital in Killgore which was closest to the Tomorrow Legion H.Q.. This was the hospital they were familiar with from previous adventures and because Spirit radioed ahead, medical teams were waiting on the roof when they landed. As they brought him in the hospital, the medical staff removed all the tech gear from the villain in order to better treat him. Dr. Preposterous confiscated that gear and intended to research it as soon as he got back to the H.Q.
  • Spirit didn’t really know what to say to the four heroes. He called the other Legionnaires and thanked them for their help but informed them that the mission for tomorrow night was cancelled. He took Diane aside and told her that while he respected her skills and dedication to being a hero, if she takes any more killing shots against her enemies then she would be kicked out of the Tomorrow Legion. Diane tried to argue for her case but Spirit was in no mood to listen to her side of things.

EPILOGUE

The next night…

The woman who called herself Amaya stood on the edge of the pier. The night wind blew cool sea spray at her face as she overlooked the calm waters of the bay. She stood so still that the wind blowing through her long, dark hair was all that betrayed her as a real person and not some sort of life-like statue or robot. An observer might look at her and think she was bored, but they would be mistaken. Boredom, like all emotions, was something she no longer felt. The weight of continued existence crushed her spirit almost as firmly as the brigands who, centuries ago, unknowingly set her upon this path. They had left her with only rage; her revenge had left her with nothing.

Behind her all up and down the pier was a large contingent of Ironworkers – men and women who were a part of Iron Mike’s criminal organization. Unlike Amaya, they were all uneasy. They were there to unload a cargo ship that was scheduled to arrive hours ago and had not yet shown up. While it wasn’t unusual for ships to sometimes be late, it was unusual for no communication in that regard to be sent. They all knew what was on that ship – this was a weapons deal that had cost their boss countless millions, and he did not like being disappointed. The longer they waited, the more nervous they got.

A shadow behind Amaya silently bulged outward and a figure emerged, pulling the shadow around itself as it stepped forward. It crept closer to Amaya in absolute silence, as stealthy as the night. Amaya made no move of acknowledgement to his presence and just continued to stand there motionless. A smile broke out on the shadowy figure’s face but immediately fell as Amaya began to speak.

“The Master wishes to know how the job fares?”

The Shadow-Man grimaced and walked up close to her, careful to keep out of her reach and to stand so that he could keep a wary eye on both her and the Ironworkers on the pier. “Yeah,” he croaked. “Iron Mike wants to know why he hasn’t heard from you yet.”

“His command to me was to receive the ship, unload it, and let him know when we were nearly finished. Does it look like we are nearly finished?”

The Shadow-Man laughed. “You are something else, lady.”

She said nothing in reply.

“So what should I tell him then?” He asked, looking down at the men and women standing around, doing nothing.

“Tell him his orders are being followed to the letter, as they always are. As he knows they must be.”

“But what about the ship – why isn’t it here yet?”

“If he orders me to investigate that then I will do so. Until I hear otherwise I will wait here to receive his ship even though it does not appear to be coming. I will then direct any of his men who are still around to unload it. And when it is nearly finished I will let him know.”

The Shadow-Man smiled. “So you don’t know. I guess I’ll just tell him that the ship is missing and nobody knows why.”

“It seems you did not need my input after all.” She said coldly.

The Shadow-Man just smiled a crooked grin and stepped back to enter the shadow he arrived in. He stopped when Amaya started talking again.

“I met her, you know.”

He knew who she was talking about – there was only one person she could be talking about. But he repressed the murderous urge that rose and asked anyway. “Met. Who?”

“The Huntress of Diana,” she replied. There was no hint of condescension, no implications, no goading. Just a simple statement of fact. This was the only reason the Shadow-Man let her keep talking. Or so he convinced himself anyway.

More surprising to him was that this was the first time Amaya had talked to him without being prompted. And she called that girl ‘The Huntress of Diana’ and not just ‘The Huntress.’ He hated every second of this game Amaya was playing but he kept his anger checked. “What do you know about her? You know I’ve been itching to find that bitch and pay her back for what she did to me.”

“I know that she, too, is late to arrive at the pier this evening.”

He could take no more. The Shadow-Man reacted swiftly – but Amaya was faster. He lunged for her, growling with hatred and rage but she deftly moved to the side just before he grabbed her. He caught his balance before falling off the edge of the pier into the water but before he could turn around Amaya gripped him by his neck and pulled him up. “That is not how someone says ‘thank-you,’” she calmly told him.

The pain in his neck was intense. He was pressed forward over the edge of the pier, held off-balance and only kept from falling in by her grip. Through gritted teeth he said to her, “In the darkness you will scream all your secrets. When your screams die and your whispered sobbing begins my shadows will construct the circle with your blood and I will invoke my Dark master who thirsts-”

“I tire of this conversation,” Amaya interrupted casually as she simultaneously pushed and let go of the Shadow-Man. He fell off the pier and down towards the water below. There was no splash of a body hitting the water. About fifty feet behind her the Shadow-Man flew out of a shadow, flying a good several feet through the air and crashing next to a couple nearby Ironworkers. He picked himself up and looked back at the edge of the pier. He saw Amaya standing exactly as she was when he arrived. He was about to yell something snarky down the pier towards her but once again, she spoke before he could say anything.

“Perhaps I will talk with you again another time,” she said while facing the bay.

“Oh, you can count on that,” he said back to her. He turned to find the two the Ironworkers staring at him. “WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT!” He yelled at them in his raspy voice. They quickly turned and ran away from him as fast as they could run. The Shadow-Man laughed, relishing their fear, and disappeared into the shadows that were in front of him.

View
Hitting the Streets for a Wilde Time

Over the course of many nights of pounding the streets, stopping thugs in the midst of crimes and interrogating them for info, The Huntress (also known as just Diane) was able to distill the following information about the crimelord Iron Mike from all the rumors and confessions she collected:

  • Iron Mike is the Kingpin of Crime in Waingroh, with just about 10% of every illegally earned dollar kicked back to him somewhow.
  • Waingroh is Iron Mike’s “kingdom.” The other syndicates don’t have much presence there, and conversely he doesn’t have much of a presence throughout the rest of the city. BUT… Waingrow is a dreadzone of crime, and that means that Iron Mike can be considered the sole reason why Waingroh is such a crime-ridden mess. No other region of the city can have such a clear, concise CAUSE for all their crime so easily pointed out.
  • His grip on Waingroh is so tight that, even though it’s such a small area compared to the whole city, it has earned him the respect of the other five syndicates and he’s definitely Top Dog among them.
  • Iron Mike doesn’t seem to have the same sort of rumored subservient role to The Minotaur that the other five crime syndicates do. Some rumors even suggest that Iron Mike may really BE The Minotaur! Or maybe The Minotaur just doesn’t have much interest in Waingroh…
  • There’s no pictures of Iron Mike, but people HAVE seen him and he’s a real person (unlike The Minotaur, who no-one’s ever even seen). The descriptive answers people give while terrified by your interrogations paint a picture that’s anywhere from 6 to 8 feet tall and somewhere between Michael Clark Duncan, Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield.
  • No-one knows his real name or his past, but there’s strong rumors that he might have been a Boxer and/or in the Military at some time. He showed up one day with a bunch of thugs and started carving out his kingdom in Waingroh. Those who work directly for him call themselves the “Ironworkers” and they are kind of organized like a union. It’s led to some rumors that he’s got a communist or socialist objective, but those seem like wild rumors at best – there’s nothing else you’ve gotten to support that.
  • Iron Mike’s core organization has supervillains as his “lieutenants.” Here’s what Diane got in that regard:
    • Amaya: Cold, detached, and uncaring seem to summarily describe this immortal Japanese assassin who is as beautiful as she is deadly.
    • Blaspheme: A nun with demonic powers. She may be a few cards short of a full deck but don’t suggest that around her.
    • Conflagration: Something about powers over smoke and fire, or he IS smoke and fire? Couldn’t pin this down in any more detail.
    • Maximal: An intelligent ape – he’s superhumanly strong, tough, and ruthless. Mock him at your own peril.
    • Momentum: Speed seems to be this guy’s thing. He’s the youngest of Iron Mike’s lieutenants and the newest.
    • Overhaul: This guy’s an inventor with an imagination on overdrive.
    • Shadowman: The boogyman psychopath of Century Station. Word is, if he comes for you you’ll never know it until you’re already dead. Definately the scariest of all Iron Mike’s lieutenants.
  • Despite the supervillain talent surrounding him, Iron Mike isn’t afraid to get his hands “dirty” when he needs to. He’s definitely believed to be superhuman but his powers and abilities are unknown. The thugs you interrogate who tell you this are pretty sure he’ll gladly deal with you himself if you keep bothering his operations.
  • Ever since the Project Daedalus days Iron Mike has had an interest in collecting high technology. He doesn’t generally go “out of his way” for it, nor does he centralize his empire around this goal, but if some technology that’s “interesting” to him should become known to him, he’ll usually try to acquire it. What his purpose is in acquiring this stuff is unknown.
  • Word is the Tomorrow Legion is flaunting some high technology item now, but it seems like an obvious trap so everyone so far has just kind of ignored it.

It took Diane many nights of patrols and thug shakedowns to gather all this info. Over this time she made herself known as someone who’s here to oppose Iron Mike, and that’s garnered mixed reception. Some folks see her as a definite hero, while others believe she’s just a bored kid with a stick poking at a sleeping bear.

AmayaIn the middle of the night, during her latest patrol and “shakedown” of criminals, a human (not a shadow-thing) stepped from out of hiding to interpose themselves calmly in-between Diane and the thugs she just chased off. Faster than a normal person can blink Diane notched and arrow and held it ready to loose, but the figure didn’t seem to even flinch. Instead the figure just stepped slowly forward just a couple of steps, so that the light from behind Diane illuminated her. What Diane saw was an Asian woman, about 5’3", dressed in some kind of loose karate or ninja clothing. Her face was completely expressionless. She looked at Diane with eyes that have seen the weight of years, and borne witness to innumerable tragedies. She looked her up and down.

“Another huntress,” She said in a very bored, cold voice somehow made more menacing due to its utter lack of emotion. “I have been sent here by My Master to either make you a generous offer, or to make you an example. The master doesn’t appreciate your curiosity. I am to offer you $150,000.00 to walk away and never return.” She indicated a briefcase sitting on the ground a few feet away. “Otherwise I am to ‘send your body back to your friends in as many pieces as I wish.’” She offered no emotion or body language clues whatsoever – it was unsettling. “Take your time to think about it. I am in no rush.”

Diane thought to herself, “Clothing, looks, emotionless… This must be Amaya. I can’t believe Iron Mike is offering me money to stay away.”

Diane said to Amaya “I’m not alone, if I accepted the money, what would you do about the others? They are a lot more scary than me! Mike will have to come up with a lot more money than this to buy them off. I don’t think the others are interested in money anyway.”

With a solid grip on her bow, Diane stepped forward carefully until she was only about five feet away. There, she activated the Words of Truth ability her bow possessed in order to prevent Amaya from lying to her.

“You don’t look like the type to work for such a thug,” Diane carefully said to Amaya. “Why do associate with such trash? He really must have something on you.”

With no hesitation Amaya responded in a flat, emotionless voice. “Why do I associate with Iron Mike? Because I must. My decisions in life set before me this path, upon which I must walk. Just as your decision now will lead you down a path of your own choosing.”

Diane looked down at the suitcase, then back to Amaya. “The money – I’ll think about it. Where can you be reached?”

Amaya simply responded, “Very well. I suppose this meets the requirements. You may reach me in three day’s time, at Pier 19A of the Archipelago. Midnight. Now return to your friends in one whole piece.” She walked over to the suitcase and picked it up, preparing to leave.

Diane says to her before she leaves, “Do not underestimate who you are dealing with, say hi for me to your friend Shadow.”

Without another word Amaya slowly walked away. She rounded a corner and disappeared as soundlessly as she had arrived.

View
An Interlude
Somewhere in time and space...

In the Center a small alarm light began to blink. The technician monitoring the sensors quickly noticed and called out, “Over here!” A thin, wiry man rushed over from another area of the facility. He was met with and soon flanked by two other technicians trying to keep up with him.

“What is it? Have we found him?” Asked the wiry man.

“I am not sure yet,” the first technician responded. He was loading up data on the photon displays and cycling through archaic digital documents. “I am isolating the cause of the temporal anomaly now.”

“Well hurry up,” the wiry man brusquely demanded. “We only have minutes before the temporal wave hits and the stream realigns. We have to capture this now while we can detect it.”

The technician to the right of the wiry man was squinting at the display, trying to figure something out. He spoke up. “Is that… 20418, E.C.E.? Is that where he is hiding?”

The wiry man shot a pained look of acknowledgement and understanding at the questioning technician. “It seems likely, but let us hope not.” he thoughtfully answered. “Though I must confess, given the fugitive’s understanding of history it was one of the more likely times for him to flee into.”

“I got it!” The first technician shouted.

“Let me see, what are we looking at here?”

“It is a memorial statue,” the first technician blandly states. “According to this, a statue commemorating sacrifices during an event called ‘Bloody Monday’ has shifted location by a large margin.”

“Hmm…” the wiry man thoughtfully mused. “This is exactly the sort of high-level change we have been looking for. Have you isolated the cause?”

“Yes sir, and I have already transposed the records for comparison. I am projecting it onto the main display now.”

The wiry man walked closer to the main display, his nose almost touching the photons. The point of divergence – two newspaper headlines with their main articles overlapping phased into view. Behind them the cascading series of increasingly different events, built upon the events in these articles, appeared and culminated in the statue’s location change. A seemingly small temporal event, but with large enough ramifications that they could detect it. The technician did his job well – each alteration from the original time was clearly isolated and annotated in the three dimensions. The original headline and article detailed an out of control fire that leveled a full city block. As a point of divergence, the ‘new’ headline and article instead detailed the actions of a group of tomorrow legion heroes preventing the fire’s spread and saving the block.

The technicians flanking him reviewed the projected data as well. The one on his left dismissed it. “That is not him. He is not mentioned in the new article.” The technician on the right declared, “20418 was the birth of this technology. There are bound to be numerous false positives during that chaotic time.”

“No,” the wiry man decided. “He may not be in the articles but this has his dataprints all over it. I am sure he is behind this.” He addressed the first technician. “Compress all this into stasis to preserve it against the coming temporal wave. This is his trail – I am sure of it.”

The technician on the right spoke up again. “Sir, the fugitive was a Rank SS Historian who was fully aware of the limits to our technology. There is no way he would be behind such a significant temporal event.”

The wiry man scowled angrily at the technician. “Of course not you sorquetwith! He knows better than that. Which is why we must focus on the outliers surrounding him. They will eventually lead us to him, and once we catch him we will have enough evidence to ice him for thousands of cycles!”

The room began to shake as if by an earthquake, but the Center was not tethered to earth in any meaningful way. “The wave is here. Remember your training,” the wiry man said to the group. As if on cue, all four of them focused and entered a meditative state designed to protect their recent memories. The wiry man smiled as the wave passed through them. “We will catch you yet, Frac-Tal,” he thought to himself. “You will not escape justice.” Then everything changed; and everything was as it should be.

View
Oil and Water Don't Mix But Fire and Ice Will Never Play Nice
The saga of Arctic Hellfire and Antipode

crop.jpg

So there I was, Matty, just minding my own business…

It was a night not much different than any other. I encountered some random punks, handled some misdemeanors and minor crimes – nothing I couldn’t handle. So there I was, on the 109 between Norwood and Willingham, when sirens, flashing lights, and a blue glow from Willingham caught my eye. This district was usually quiet so it was unusual to witness such commotion. I was already tuned-in to the police band so it was easy to pick up on a fire raging out of control and two super-humans dueling in the sky above. This was a job for…SUPER-HAZEL!

CS_excerpt_-_Trouble.png

From listening to the police-band I was able to learn:

1. There’s a hero and a villain fighting, both women. The Hero’s name is “Arctic Hellfire”, the villain is currently unknown.

2. The fire is light blue and cold. When the fire department tried to spray it with water they made it worse!

3. When Arctic Hellfire arrived she told the firemen to stop trying to put it out and focus on preventing it from spreading.

4. She didn’t get the chance to say anymore before the other superhuman ambushed her, and they’ve been fighting up in the sky since. Whenever Arctic Hellfire tries to break away to come back to the fire she’s intercepted and the fight resumes.

Well I’m close so I can definitely respond to the call…

shibuya_car_blur_by_onrelas.jpg

Traveling the 109 isn’t easy on foot and, since my bike was still in the shop, I was hoofin’ it. The blue glow intrigued me. I’ve read about ley lines but only in a peripheral, academic interest. I was definitely curious but things have been so hectic and busy since moving to Century Station, starting a new job, and all these late nights fighting crime – I just haven’t had the opportunity to explore the ley lines further. Back home in the Verde my “home-schooled” arcane education gave me passing knowledge but also said that they were relatively rare occurrences and that there was still much we didn’t know about them or where they came from.

The_Opening_of_a_Rift_by_docpriest.jpg

(Lore: Geomancy / Lines of Power – 82% out of 60% – fail) I wonder if there could be any significance with the location and the fire. The presence of supers isn’t too out of the ordinary. (Astronomy (47% out of 50% — success unless there’s a penalty) I also wonder if there’s anything important about the star alignment, the date, celestial bodies, solar eclipses, equinox, solstice…etc. I didn’t recall anything about this area being a “place of power” or anything like that. As far as celestial events, to my (successful) reckoning there didn’t seem to be any unusual influence, though it was about 10 minutes past midnight and I know midnight IS a minor yet significant time of day in that regard.

“Feet, don’t fail me now! Man, I wish Matty were here…although, she’s not much good in a fight. Diane…definitely Diane. Virgil would be good too — but there’s nothin’ like being backed up by an ass-kicking goddess who can put an arrow through a villain’s heart at 100 paces. Never mind that Hazel. You’ve got a few tricks up your sleeve. If shit goes bananas just whip out your cell phone and high-tail it! Okay, good idea. Thanks for the pep talk.”

“Who am I kidding? I’m fucking scared! That’s the adrenalin talking. Don’t be stupid. Radio back to the TLHQ and at least let someone know where the hell you’re going. They probably won’t make it in time to save your life if you need it but at least they won’t be far away. Ouch! That was kind of…morbid. Who the hell are you? Wait! Don’t answer that! Look, Hazel, maybe you should lay off the espresso. Good call. I’m goin’ in!”

Click. “Hey, anybody there?”

Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….

Click. “This is Hazel, come in. Over.”

Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…..

Shit. Did Virgil go to the bathroom and leave the wireless at the desk? Fuckin’ jock brain! It’s not like I can leave a voice-mail on a radio.

Sigh. Click. “Verge?” Pickup pickup pickup pickup pickup. “Veeeeeeeerge?!?!”

“Oh, hey Hazel! What’s up?” It was a voice other than Vigilance and it set my teeth on edge.

“Are you kidding me right now?”

“Uh, nope. What’s up?”

“Cav, check your police band on frequency X897xhkhq3.07133. My coordinates are…um, well I don’t know but you should be able to pull me up on the GEEPS. I’m going to check out some supers fighting, a raging fire, and a blue glow off the 109 between Norwood and Willingham.”

“Oh wow Hazel. Are you sure you don’t wanna wait for backup?”

“I’ll play it kewl until someone comes. Can you dispatch Diane?”

“I don’t know. I’ll try her — she’s not really in your area though. I’ll come down there myself if I can’t get a hold of anyone else.”

“Well who’s gonna cover the radio while you’re off playing “HER0”, eh?"

“Is that sarcasm I hear in your voice?”

“You’re a quick one Cavalry. Just get me some company aysaaap. Hazel out.” Click.

Tonight’s monitor radio and dispatch duty had a “C-lister” from the Tomorrow Legion pool, Cavalry – he’s a C-Lister so he doesn’t even have his own wiki page.

cavalry.jpg

I padded along, not sticking to the shadows, but also not outright hauling ass and running in the street. A brisk pace that afforded me the opportunity to take mental inventory: Follow the lights. Follow the sirens. Keep the police-band on. What are they saying? Any information I have ahead of time gives me an advantage before I even arrive at the scene. Check the ACE. I discreetly pulled the slide back, chamber a round, double-check the safety — ON. Tuck the ACE back into it’s concealed holster. Spells to buff? Yeah, right now would be that time. I hope I can trust them not to screw me when it counts. Better to get them out of the way now BEFORE the action — if there even is any. Okay, See the Unseen – check, Evil Radar – check. And that’s good enough for now.

As an added bonus, I noticed that my spells felt a little more powerful. As expected, a few random side-effects altered my spells just enough to make them…annoying. I made a mental note to document the Ley Line’s proximity and its effect on my magic. Maybe it was also enhancing my side-effects. Well, all of a sudden my eyes really hurt — it was painful just to keep them open. When I rubbed my eyes with my hand to ease the aching pain, pulled my hand away, I saw a faint glow emanating from my hands…seemingly coming from my eyes. How WEIRD!!! And ultimately inconvenient. Ugh! Evil Radar didn’t have any discernible side-effects. Thank Gawd!

So with my spells cast, I moved closer, into position. I pulled out my gun, checked the safety, made sure it was loaded, and put it back again. I’m not about to run around with a gun in plain sight unless it’s open-hostility and street warfare.

This section of town, Willingham, is a poor area of old industrial centers and factories that’s jam-packed with row houses and features expert urban planning present throughout the district. Unlike other parts of town, Willingham has wide sidewalks, many parks and plazas, and pedestrian-only avenues. You also note an abundance of Community Centers and Churches. It kind of reminds me of the Verde — almost like Suburbia within erm…Urbia?

Industrial_Area_by_fredmentor.jpg

When I got closer — to within line of sight of the area — I noticed several things:

1. There were several old industrial buildings on fire and the fire was raging fiercely. The fire was light blue as it had been described over the police-band. Instead of searing heat I felt an icy chill. I really needed to check this out up close.

2. Fire trucks were set up around the perimeter but nobody seemed to be fighting the fire. Hoses were set up, everything seemed operational, but the firemen were talking with each other and with police officers worriedly instead of using any of their equipment.

3. Two figures were flying through the air, fighting each other with ice and fire attacks. At quick glance their costumes looked similar.

4. My mystically-trained eyes saw the faint, soft glow encompassing the area which indicates that one of the Century Station ley lines is running through here. I wasn’t surprised because I knew it was around here somewhere, but the buildings obscured it as I approached the scene and now I was inside of it. Wow! Y’know, I don’t think I’ve ever actually been INSIDE a Ley Line before. This is kind of kewl. I wonder what will happen if I try to draw on the psychic energy…

I reached out to try and draw on the psychic energy potential and I felt it there but it was fainter than I expected. I managed to draw some measly little sip of energy out of the Ley Line. Though less than I thought it would be, the energy here was palatable, and I thought that meditating in such a place would boost my own recovery of such energy.

Blue_Energy_Blast_by_Nickle4aPickle.png

Click. “Hey Cav! Do you know anything about Arctic Hellfire? I hear the police chattin’ it up on the band and they’ve mentioned that name a few times. No word on who the Baddy is. I’m close enough to see the fireworks display and it looks like the fire is BLUE! Spraying it with water is actually fueling the flame instead of smothering it. It sounds like the fire department isn’t equipped to contain this kind of fire. Maybe I should focus on helping out with damage control instead of entering a direct confrontation with the CONFLAGRATION!”

Hazel rubbed her eyes absently. They’re still aching painfully — throbbing — and my hands were still glowing "Ugh!

Cavalry responded, “I’ll search Goggle real quick for you. Hmm… Let’s see… No, not this… Okay… Maybe this one? No… Oh, here… It looks like she’s a hero who’s been around Century Station about a year. It seems… she has powers involving ice, and fire? It seems like she can fly, too. Man, she’s so lucky! Being able to fly…”

“Hey, Cavalcade, can we focus here? My ass is on the line…”

Cavalry stopped his rambling over the radio and I basked in blessed silence.

Focusing my perception toward the raging inferno I saw that the blue flames are causing the building materials to blister and shatter into an icy dust rather than scorching and burning them to ash and cinder. My knowledge of Magic combined with your earlier perception definitely identified this as a magical fire – despite the fact that I’ve never seen anything like it before. I never read anything in any of my family’s books or their extensive research that even hinted at this kind of spell. The thought struck me, however, that there are other disciplines of magic one can follow. The four traditional elements have corresponding forces, and some mages learn to align or tap into those forces. Warlocks…yeah! Those are the guys! With my limited knowledge it struck me as possible that this magic may be representative of a more pure or primal elemental magic that I’m just not familiar with.

Blue_Flames_by_Lazy6pyro.jpg

When I looked at the two figures flying and fighting each other through the air, I noticed a few more things:

1. They were dressed in similar style outfits that have a fiery red and icy white color theme. One woman had short, orange-ish red hair while the other had long, dark black hair. Their outfits are not identical and in fact, the color schemes are sort of mirrored; where one woman’s costume is white, the others is red, and vice-versa.

2. Now that I was looking closer I saw both women’s eyes faintly glowing.

3. The woman with the orange-ish red hair was trying to break away from the fight but the woman with the long black hair kept preventing her – she either moved to intercept or redoubled her attacks.

I’m snapped a few quick shots on my phone of the scene, the two combatants, the “frost-fire,” and the authorities – twiddling their authoritative thumbs. One for the Yearbook boys!

The firemen standing around looking…almost bored, really bugged me so I decided it was time to light a fire under their asses! I approached in a very direct, businesslike manner. Raised my voice, not quite shouting, but demanding attention from everyone standing around. “Head’s-up! I am Hazel, a Heroine of the Tomorrow Legion and I’m here to help. Guys, I realize this isn’t an ordinary fire. You’re ill-equipped to deal with something like this. However, you are WELL-EQUIPPED to evacuate people from their homes, get them medical attention if they need it, and take plenty of eye-witness reports and depositions. I will do everything in my power to contain the fire but I’m going to need YOUR HELP to ensure that no one is hurt. Firemen, police officers, EMTs, everyone and anyone who’s trained in CPR and smoke-inhalation safety, get your butts moving!”

My words snapped them out of their indecisive “trance” and they got to work! They started moving to get to nearby buildings and evacuate them, clearing them of their inhabitants proactively in case the out of control “frost-fire” continued to spread. Score one for the Witch!

I scanned the area to determine where I was needed the most. I needed to begin trying to ascertain 1) where the fire started 2) what started it 3) what direction it’s moving 4) how to fucking stop it. Now, as soon as I was “relatively” sure I was out of eye-shot I cast “Unseen” then cast “Shimmering Protection”, then I took a deep breath and summoned up Dark Hazel.

The Unseen spell went off without a hitch for once! It’s a miracle! Everything was properly invisible. The Shimmering Armor spell, however, felt tight and restrictive – like it’s a size too small. You’ll have the “light armor” penalties of -5% to appropriate physical skills while it’s active. At least now I was invisible, armored, and transformed.

Not hearing screams of anyone in dire need of aid I began a methodical sweep of the…battleground.

1) There was a small, multi-family home that seemed to be blazing the most strongly. The fire had mostly consumed it. The few people who lived there had been evacuated safely. They were nearby with rescue workers and, when asked, they told me that Arctic Hellfire was responsible for their evacuation. They also said she was doing something to try and stop the fire when that other girl ambushed her.

2) The fire spread out to nearby buildings (they’re packed pretty tightly in this block). It was moving slowly and I thought if it wasn’t stopped it would probably consume all the buildings on the block. As stated earlier, it seemed that most of the buildings here were older industrial buildings, but there were some residential mixed in the block as well, and the emergency responders were working to evacuate those in order of which seem to be closest to the danger first.

Then, in the sky, I saw two figures swoop close to the buildings – the orange-haired one in the lead and being chased/followed by the black girl with the black hair. The orange-haired one got within a couple hundred feet above the leading edge of the fire, stopped and quickly cast a spell. It went off and about a 150 foot diameter area of the “frost-fire” below her suddenly extinguishes. The other girl screams in anger “NOO! Stop! Ignoring! ME!” and with a quick spell of her own creates a 20+ foot long line of fire and starts hitting the other one with it.

Hazel shouts, “Hey! Stop Ignoring me too! How can I help put out this fire while you gals settle your little lovers spat? Looks like the evil step-sister is begging for attention. Point me in the right direction and tell me how to keep this fire from consuming the whole block! I don’t want to destroy people’s homes but I’ll get ahead of the fire and take ’em out to keep it contained if I have to!”

Abstract_Blue_Flames_by_Pluberus.jpg

Ouch, I thought that fires don’t burn if they don’t have fuel to consume — but this is already a depressed neighborhood and destroying more homes makes her feel badly. There’s got to be another way! I took a moment to stop and cast “Learn the Mystical” (Decipher Magic) on the frost-fire in the hopes of revealing more about the true nature of this paradoxical phenomenon. My newly-empowered sight didn’t translate any mystical writings – in fact, there were none around that I could see.

The orange-haired girl looked around but didn’t notice me – obviously she can’t see the unseen. She parried a couple more of the flame tongue attacks and shouts randomly down to the area, “Magic! Um… not water. Sand- you can smother it!” The black girl took that moment to cast another spell at her but nothing happens when she finishes. She looked surprised and the orange-haired girl said to her, “Running low?” Emboldened by this seeming turn of the tide she cast a spell which causes the upper body of the other girl to become encased in ice. She started to fall into the ice cold flames as she struggled against the ice encasing her. The orange-haired girl dove to try and catch her.

Over the radio I heard Zeau, one of the other Tomorrow Legion C-Listers speak up: “Hazel, I heard you have a situation going on? I just finished up over here and I don’t think I’m too far away from you. I could lend you a hand if you need one – it would be no trouble for me at all.” The condescension in his voice carried through the radio just as well as it does in person.

“Hey Zeau! If you’re done congratulating yourself — YES, I could use your help. Two supers are duking it out over here and laying waste to the neighborhood with a raging frost-fire. It can’t be put out by using water — but we can probably try to snuff it out. I’ve got the authorities evacuating the area but they’re basically clueless as to how to put out this fire! Enough chatter! Either help or don’t. Hazel out!”

(Computer operation: 39%) C’mon’ Goggle…c’mon Goggle! Don’t fail me now. Fires fires fires. Okay. Fires need oxygen…chemical fires? Magical fires? Ah…too much to hope for a wikipaedia on magical fires. Okay. How do we snuff you out? Wikiwikiwikiwiki…ah! Aha! Okay I got it!

I dropped my unseen spell, transformed back into Hazel, and returned to the fire trucks and any remaining firemen.

“Alright ladies! This is to be treated as a CHEMICAL FIRE — you CANNOT use traditional fire-fighting methods! NO WATER! It has to be snuffed out with powder or sand or another chemical agent. It’s STILL a fire — though it doesn’t look like one — and that means it needs OXYGEN to burn! Cut off the air-supply and this thing is dead in the water…and that means these people have homes to go back to! GET TO IT!! ON THE DOUBLE!!!!”

Way to take charge Hazel! That’s what heroes are for! The firefighters started shouting at each other and several went back to their trucks to get some CO2 extinguishers. They took them up to an area of the fire and try them out against it with surprised success! Emboldened, a few of them took the extinguishers and started going to the outliers of the fire to start trying to contain it, while the others went back to the trucks and either started making some adjustments to their equipment or making calls over the radio for some specialized gear to get here A.S.A.P.. Those who made modifications to their trucks took their hoses, now hooked up differently, and started blanketing the fire in a wet, foamy substance. The fire began to react to it as if it was water but once enough is covering it the icy flames begin to die away.

Whew! Thank Goggle! It’s a good thing I get 10G LTX service out here! What would I do without internet? Not now Hazel! Gotta grab one of those special extinguishers and rush back into the fray!

Then, out of nowhere, I saw a dump truck round the corner, full of dirt and barreling toward the fire. As it got closer I could see Zeau was driving it. He got close to the fire, near my location, and then hit the brakes, sliding the truck sideways closer to the fire. He flew out of the cab and around to the back. He didn’t even spare me a second glance as he started “telekinetically” hurling dirt out of the back of the truck at the fire raging in this area. It is slowly being snuffed out.

HEY-OH!!!! It’s ZAY-OH!!!!! TO SAVE THE DAY-OH!!!!!!”

Sniff. Let that one inflate his ego just enough.

The black-haired girl was freed and starts laughing wildly as she grapples with the orange-haired one for…something. Was it the other girl’s amulet? And then two of them, entwined in a grapple, continue to fall into the ice-cold fire. When she ripped it off of the other girl, her eyes stopped glowing and she seemed to lose her ability to fly. I heard the black-haired girl say “Looks like I’m not running low anymore!” and then her laughter resumed as the two of them sped toward the the building. The crash that ensued was probably caused by the roof of a structurally-weakened building giving way to the two falling girls.

“Zeau! I’m heading over to where the supers crashed through the roof!” I took a second to point out the building I was going into. "Oh, and don’t be surprised when you see the “real” me!" I snickered and ran off toward the house as I began to morph back into Dark Hazel.

pysoni_7_by_tasastock-d255mpu.jpg

Once I transformed I found the extinguisher to be surprisingly light. The building was an old storage warehouse, and the frost flames had thoroughly engulfed it. Wrapped in the Shimmer Armor, and avoiding direct contact with the flames was the only way I could survive. Oddly, there wasn’t any smoke for me to worry about. I used the extinguisher to help clear a path, but with all the fire and debris it was very slow going. I knew my armor might run out before I found the super-girls. I cast a quick mystical tripwire alarm on the doorway for good measure. If anyone was coming in behind me I wanted to know about it.

412wQCTSoqL.jpg

Oh wow! The super just got a hold of more…energy! She must be stopped ASAP!!! Hazel to the rescue!

The lights in the building were off and only the flickering, soft blue-white glow of the frigid fire lit the interior. I cast Shadow Meld and once the spell went off I suddenly found the flames painfully bright to look at, and they hurt my eyes. Once I stepped into a shadow large enough to accommodate me, however, looking out over the warehouse and at the fire no longer bothered me at all. What a strange side-effect! I only wish it could be duplicated! The Mystic Alarm and the mystic symbols I traced upon the ground seemed to move and dance with the firelight. They didn’t seem to be moving out of that spot, but it’s like they were stretching and contorting in response to the flicker of the fires. As if the lettering of the wards were themselves just shadows cast by something unseen, and unfelt (you check but there’s nothing – the ward symbols had literally become shadow-like. NOW THIS WAS SOME WILD ASS MAGIC!?!!?

Blue_Green_Flames_by_evilblackdragon12.jpg

It took me four minutes to navigate the burning building and find the supers. About a minute into working my way around the building a section of a wall exploded outward in a spray of icy cold, bitter dust and blistered shrapnel. WOOSH! I dodged! Phew! Another minute or so of searching and I heard a crash above me and dodged out of the way of a falling section of the ceiling/roof just before it buried the spot I was standing in. Holy shit! It crashed to the ground behind me and bits of turned to powder in a fine dry mist. At about that time my constrictive shimmering armor finally shattered, exposing me to the true, bitter cold of this raging frost-fire inferno. I cast another shimmering armor spell and this one fit me properly. It didn’t look like anything weird happened with that spell until I had to step out of one shadow into another – uh oh! I prepared myself for the expected brightness but it didn’t happen. Puzzled, I caught a glimpse of myself, clad in what looked almost like shadowy armor. When I didn’t t move I was basically indistinguishable from all the other shadows, despite remaining three-dimensional. This wild magic stuff and side-effects shit is CRAZY and totally unpredictable!

Stealthily I came upon a room and heard voices. The two girls were talking:

Black-haired: “Admit it – I’ve won! You’re powerless. You’re beaten. This whole block, including your home, is going to go up in frozen flames and there’s nothing you can do about it!”

Black_Hair_1.png

I saw she had the necklace wrapped around her hand, and an amulet was hanging from it. She gestured with the amulet and a blast of blue energy flies from her hand to strike the wall next to the orange-haired girl. The orange-haired girl was slumped against the wall, and she looked pretty beat up. Her head was down but after that blast she looked up, smirking. Shakily she got to her feet.

Orange_-_no_powers.png

Black-haired: “What’s so funny?” She gestured with the amulet again, threatening but not doing anything. “I’ve won. You can’t… you won’t ignore me any more.”

Orange-haired: “Do you…” She coughed, bloody. Her voice was raspy. “Do you know where we are? This whole place… this whole area…” She paused a moment. “It’s full of magical power. Seeped in it.”

The black-haired girl just looked at her, puzzled. “So what?” She barked. “It’s not like that matters. I’ve got your power right here. You’re nothing without it! Nothing!”

The orange-haired girl reached out to a nearby table to steady herself. “Tamara…” she said. “You couldn’t be more wrong.” Defiantly she glares back at the black-haired girl and you see her chant a short magic spell. Fire appears in her hands and she tossed it at the black haired girl.

Orange_-_psych_.png

Stunned, the black-haired girl (apparently named Tamara) got hit directly, but when the fiery explosion cleared she was unharmed. “So you have a few tricks left, Michelle but you forget that I still have the source of all your powers.” She wiggled the amulet at her. “And with it I have all those powers as well!” She began casting another spell, while the orange-haired girl (apparently named Michelle) flipped the table on its side and ducked behind it.

I had definitely seen and heard enough. I saw an opening and cast a Magic Net on the Black Haired vixen at my first opportunity. It came as a total surprise and took her off guard. She found herself fighting a magical net woven by the very fabric of the magic she was tossing around so casually. Payback’s a bitch!

ID_by_Tasastock.jpg

I whipped out my handcuffs as Arctic Hellfire reached through the fibers of the magic seine to wrest both amulets from the incapacitated Antipode. She coughed up more blood and I introduced myself to her with an apology that I hadn’t gotten here sooner. She thanked me graciously and told me she was too exhausted to continue fighting the fire. The line of energy wouldn’t be enough in her weakened state and in the ley line’s diminished output. I volunteered to supplement her pool of energy and she looked wide-eyed in shock but accepted gratefully. Together we extinguished the fire over the entire block — whatever hadn’t already been snuffed out by the efforts of Zeau and the Firefighters. I remarked that her fire-snuffing spell would come in MIGHTY handy and I’d be much obliged if she taught me it. She didn’t outright decline.

When things finally calmed down with the fire all but gone and Antipode turned over to the authorities Arctic Hellfire introduced herself to me formally and gave me her brief but illustrious history both before and after arriving in Century Station. She was a member of a group of super-heroes out west and Antipode, Tamara, was a member of that team as well. She and Michelle knew each other and each had a corresponding amulet from that affiliation. Apparently Tamara had followed Michelle to CS and carried a grudge. She shared with me that she once considered joining the Tomorrow Legion but she declined. I offered that she reconsider but didn’t push. I proposed that we meet up one day soon — after showers, rest, and some serious caffeine. I would very much like to study the amulets and perform a bit of research on them before she returns Antipode’s amulet to the super hero group whence it came. I hope I can convince her to share a little arcane knowledge with me before we part ways. I feel, as a Callow Youth, there is much I can learn from her and…perhaps, even a little bit that I can impart to her.

Regardless, I touched base with Spirit before parting ways and informed him of the happenings. Questioning Antipode was a waste of time — she’s so consumed with hatred and her axe-to-grind for revenge that she’s just a minor player. She had no affiliation or ties to Iron Mike or the Shadow Man. Just another misguided villain on a lonely road to self-destruction.

Matty, I think I’m taking the day off.

View
Stocking the Shelves

books_by_forgottenx.jpg

Hazel whistles a happy little tune. It’s so peaceful being here. This is a place of knowledge. And not just any knowledge — esoteric, eclectic, and arcane. There are plenty of New-Agey bullshit magic that teach about crystals and Reiki healing and love potions and voodoo dolls. An experienced connoisseur glosses over those with a momentary grazing of his wandering eye. Hazel browses expertly. After all, she has taken on the affectation of “Witch.” Which Witch is Which? Witch-hazel? She can cast real spells. Although they rarely have the EXACT book-learned effect or outcome…but they get the job done. It’s sad that spell casting isn’t much of an exact science. How does anyone ever really know what a spell is actually supposed to do when all the little nuances and details change…well, almost every time it’s cast? One day she’d really like to find that out. “Ghosts and Goblins” No. “Make Him Your Slave” No thank you. “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Third Eye” Uh, nothing? Nope. “The Idiot’s Guide to Spell-Casting” Hmm…that one has prom…snap, dust! Whiff! SNEEZE@! No! “The Secrets of Ley Energy — A Primer for the Novice” Okay, that one goes in the cart — just for shit’s and giggles. Hmmm…what else what else what else…lessseeeeeeee… “Fairy Tales and You” Interesting. I’ll take it — on Spirit’s budget. “Small Business Survival Guide” Wait. What’s this doing here? Throw it in the cart. “Santeria Gumbo and the Cajun Mumbo Jumbo” Uh, no thanks! “Think You’re Psychic? You Might Be!” What….ever. “Peace is a Lie, There is Only Passion” Interesting. I’ll take it. “Through Passion I Gain Strength” Whoa, simmer down there killer. You’re mine. “Through Strength I Gain Power” Now we’re talkin’. Is the next one something about great power and great responsibility? Wait, this is a series — there’s 6 books in the series. A Sextet — I feel like that’s mystically significant for…some reason. “Through Power I Gain Victory” Whoa! This dude sounds so serious! “Through Victory my Chains are Broken” easy fella! You’re comin’ home with me. “P.P.E. Shall Free Me” Jesus H fucking Popsicle! I’m pretty sure that stands for “potential psychic energy” but I’ve never heard it used as an acronym. Okay this Sextet is a must-have. Let’s move on — there’s so much more of the store to cover…

books_by_diancat-d7gxhj6.jpg

“Will that be all miss?”

“Why yes. And I’m unfortunately without much in the way of transportation so I rang my butler who’s on his way to help with the “groceries.” She winked.

“That comes to $8,932 dollars and sixty-three cents.”

“That’s it? Hah! I feel like I should be paying you! Oh — did you ring up this pack of gum?” She hands over a credit chip.

“We don’t sell gum.”

“Odd. I wonder where I…”

“Hazel?”

“Oh! That’s him now! Tootles!”

“Miss, your card?”

“How frightfully forgetful of me.” Turns to Virgil. “Virgil, would you be a dear and lend your strength to the task? Mmm.”

“Uh, really? This is like…a ton of books.”

Turns to the attendant. “Perception AND Advanced Math — in one man. Am I a lucky woman or what?”

A new voice. “That’s quite a purchase.”

Turns to address the newcomer. “Yes, well I’ve just returned from Antarc…” Breath catches.

Charlie smiles slyly as he sees the recognition hit her. “Cat’s paw got your tongue?”

“I don’t believe it. You’re not…you’re…you…you left…you…”

He nods. “I came back… I didn’t imagine that I’d see you around again. I don’t want this to be awkward…so, here’s my card. I’d love to catch up some time.”

Blush. “No…no way. You don’t get to do that. You don’t get to just show up and hand me a card and play the cute, aloof, injured, brooding cute rock-star, starving artist turned cute book-collector.”

Virgil tries to turn with all those books so that he can see the two of them, but isn’t able to maneuver very well with all that bulk. “Uhhh. Hazel?”

Hiss. “Not now Verge! I’ll explain later.”

Charlie continues. “I’ll let you get going. I just wanted to step out of the back office for a minute and personally thank the ‘cute’ young woman with the impeccable taste in books. Although, at this rate I might have to leave to collect some more.”

Hazel laughs. “It’s good to see you too. You can keep the card. I know where to find you.”

Charlie chuckles. “That’s the girl I remember.”

“Woman now.”

“Like I said, cute.”

Library_Netvibes_BG_by_antilogic.jpg

Huff. Pant. Wheeze.

“Hazel are you okay?”

She waves him off with a dismissive hand. “What are you a fucking cyborg?”

“No. Do you want to stop?”

“Verge, you’re carrying thousands of books. Literally. You’re not even breaking a sweat. I’m carrying one bag — and that’s only because half-way home I started to feel badly that I told the attendant you were my manservant and got you to lug all this shit back to the TLHQ. Your only issue was figuring out how to actually “hold” them all. I strapped you up like a mule and you’ve been…so cheerfully, faithfully…dutifully performing…huff I’m about to fucking throw up."

“You told the book store clerk that I was your ‘manservant’?”

“Well butler, but…Verge you’re missing the point. I specifically cast a spell that should have made the book-ton as light as well, I dunno…air? As light as…a very light balloon. A feather perhaps? And now I’m floating along behind you — being towed like a bag of…air! We look like Baby Huey and the Hazel Balloon!”

“I could carry you.”

“Carry me? Are you fucking serious right now? Do you have any idea what I’m like when I’m having my period? Do you really want this to happen? You brought this on yourself! This train is about run right off the fucking tracks!”

“Awww…thanks Virgil. I appreciate all your help.”

“Your welcome.”

“You can leave it to me here. It’ll take me the next month to organize this library — and probably not without a few more trips to other various book stores.”

“That’s a lot of books!”

“A ton actually. And they will help me learn new things that will hopefully help me fight crime better — or, at the very least — become a more proficient Sorceress.”

“A sorceress? I never thought of you like that.”

“Well I guess that’s a little too strong. I’m more of a witch!”

“Lashe! Don’t say that!”

“Verrrge!”

“Hah! I gotcha one.” Chuckle.

“You definitely did…and I left myself wide open. Touche. Hazel 439820983094834, Vigilance 1!”

“Hey! No way that’s accurate!”

“Sorry. Vigilance 2!”

Grumble.

“Look, Verge, I’m all sweaty and nasty from being lugged all the way home and now I’m all dusty and crap. Give me a bit to wash up and change and let me take you out for some “thank you” drinks and a BeefCakeSteak.

“That sounds great! I’m, um, not sweaty at all so just buzz the gym when you’re ready. Gonna try to get a work-out in before we go.” Trundles off.

“A work-out? Really Verge? I’m just taking a quick shower.”

“…”

“Fine. Dick.”

Shrug.

Takes a running start. “You better move your ass Vigilance! I’m gonna be fast! Hustle! Hustle! Let’s go baby! First lap-dance is on me!” Shove!

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.