July 15th, 2013. 10:36 PM
Gotham was burning. In the days since the arrival of the strange invaders, it had been hit harder than most places. Entire districts were little more than rubble, and even the places where a human presence still resisted were more than a little reminiscent of the terrible condition the city had been in following the earthquake that struck it years before.
There was no rhyme or reason to the soldiers in this strange army. They descended from their ships, uniform in design, but the aliens themselves were strange. Some were humanoid, even human-like at times. Others were almost twelve feet tall and others the size of dogs. Others had body shapes more in common with dogs than humans. Some were alien in their entire biology, looking nothing like anything a man should witness.
The creature chasing Jinaki Azande was in the shape of a starfish.
To be precise, it was lacking the fifth limb pointing straight up, and its body seemed to share a flesh more reminiscent of an octopus. But it was fast, making terrible slurping noises at him and grappling with remarkable strength. Cutting off limbs only let him grow a new one back. And it seemed very intent on murdering him.
They were located in the Gotham Stock Exchange, just off of Gotham Plaza, the most open place in the city before the invasion began. Now, it was a pile of scrap and rubble that survivors hoping to find supplies scavenged in. Though with the aliens fast encroaching, this was no longer a viable option. Something Jinaki had learned the hard way.
He was standing out in the open, with the thing staring him down. Then, something odd happened. Its two "arm" limbs began to glow red at the tips. An indecipherable slurping heralded the red lights transforming into beams of energy. The firsts' aim was off, hitting the terminal to Jinaki's right and vaping a chunk the size of a basketball. The next was luckier, and came buzzing for his chest.
A dozen levels above Jinaki and his friend, Adrien Young was beginning to hate his life. He was situated on the rooftop of the Stock Exchange, currently backed behind a large air conditioner for cover. He glanced out at the creature engaging him. It reminded him most of a formation of old Roman soldiers. Whatever it looked like in the center, he didn't know, but four strange fleshy-yet-rock-solid squares framed its body, shielding it on four sides and leaving it impervious to his gunfire. Every few seconds, something that looked like four megahorns attached to a telephone pole raised out of the center and fired out a belching blast like a shotgun round from whichever horn was aimed at him. Each one took away a significant chunk of his cover, too. It was shuffling around nearly a dozen strange, peglike feet.
He'd need to think of something to kill it soon; he was running out of air conditioners.
Across the plaza from the Stock Exchange, the Gotham Bank had stood stalwart for several days. It hadn't been the aliens that had finally blown open the front doors in a fireball. It had been frantic, desperate citizens scared enough to believe money could somehow help them in this world. Of course, that was stupid. No amount of money could have helped them when the aliens came.
Of course, their money WOULD HAVE been some use to Mark Strife. He knew how the world was working; he'd need items to barter with soon, in exchange for supplies. Money was nice, but he ignored his urge today. He was after the safety deposit boxes.
Needless to say, he was more than surprised to find a giant creature not unlike a humanoid bull elephant inside. Its colossal gray body was built like a a bodybuilder on steroids AND Venom, standing ten feet tall and almost as wide. It was currently trumpeting in an unintelligible language, and preparing to charge with all the power of a locomotive. If he intended to get to those boxes, he'd need to find a way past this beastie. Oh, and also if he wished to live. That was good too.
Cavanaugh Sutherland hit the wall of the pharmacy next door with a painful thud, slowly sliding down to the floor below as his body ached. He could feel bits of the paint still stuck in his back as he struggled back to his feet. His mind was reeling, wondering how a simple supply run for medicine had turned into such a struggle. He was currently behind the pharmacy's actual counter, and on the opposite side stood a saurian creature slightly larger than him. Particularly in the musculature. Its olive scales fleshed with the rippling muscles beneath, as it tightened its grip on a steel trident it held with both hands. Its tail cracked in the air as it hissed at him. It was dressed in a bronze, sleeveless jumpsuit that went down to his thighs.
"Hrrraak krsh krsh mongul bat'tak!"
He certainly wished he could understand a word the creature was saying. As best as he could tell, if he was getting away with this medicine it wouldn't be without a fight.
Outside, nearer to the center of Gotham Plaza, a young woman was being smashed into a car. The hood and windshield buckled beneath her as she was tossed into its frame, and if it weren't for her... special spine, she'd likely be paralyzed by the impact. But Rosemary Rosenburg was hardly your average woman. She was able to stand and avoid an orange flash of light. She rolled to the ground a few yards to her left, and looked back to see the automobile she'd just moved away from was nothing but a pile of ash now.
The creature facing her was humanoid, but with a somewhat angular and conical head, encased in a visored helmet. The rest of its body was armored in what seemed to be ceramic-like armor, painted burgundy and brown. Its right arm was gripping a cybernetic attachment, drilling into its arm to hold a mechanical fist in place for piston-powered punches. The left arm gripped a deceptively small disintegrator pistol, which was now taking aim at her again. She'd have to disarm him before she could even think of escaping her pursuer; whatever this thing was, it'd been chasing her for two days.
Felicia Sicomb panted, catching her breath as she stood at the opposite end of the Plaza. About ten feet away stood a strange, spindly creature. She was reminded of a praying mantis but on two legs, with three fingers at the end of each "claw". It was dressed in odd, bronze clothing, and at the moment it was holding the weirdest weapon she'd ever encountered.
It was shaped like a rifle, but rather than a barrel there were three "prongs" that expanded when the trigger was pulled, like it had just been a moment ago. The prongs began to sizzle with energy, opening a silvery vortex of some sorts. Immediately, Felicia felt a nearly irresistible tug on her body, slowly being pulled towards the vortex. Only the timely placement of several tendrils in the ground below rooted her in place. Other items were less lucky, and bits of rubble began to drag themselves into the silvery ball. Their shapes warped and shrunk, disappearing entirely into its maw. Something told Felicia that she did not want to experience that firsthand, and needed some way to escape the suction.
Felicia had been engaging her foe outside of the Plaza Theater, and inside its lobby yet another encounter was playing out. Popcorn, old tickets, and various bits of detritus littered the floor as Alan Finch scrambled for safety. A wasplike creature was charging after him, landlocked for the lack of wings but lucky for it wielding a pair of kukri-like blades. They were swung with wild abandon, barely missing Alan each time as he ducked behind various bits of cover. He most recently had jumped behind the snack vendor bar, and now found himself trapped by the creature. He could hear it scraping the blades against each other on the other side. He'd need a plan to disable it.
Or perhaps he might get lucky. The door from the closet theater room were flung open, and out was tossed the sliced and diced remains of a similar wasp-like creature. Through the doors stepped through a blood-soaked man, red staining the horribly inappropriate catchphrase of "BAZINGA!" emblazoned on his t-shirt. Jake Mulcahy, or Mr. Stormalong as he was better known, was staring out into the lobby and directly at the other "wasp", who was glaring back and screeching in a throaty and grating language. It was scraping its blades against one again, looking more than ready for a fight.
Not more than three doors down from the theater was a small convenience store, a dingy place with no business holding the kind of chaos it currently did. In the candy aisle, Sean Chen was finding himself completely absorbed staying alive. The creature in front of him was difficult to describe. If one were a fan of cartoons, the closest analogue they'd think of would be CatDog.
Rather than a distinct set of arms and legs, each end of this dull blue creature had a pair of toned martial artist's arms. Each also sported a head. The one currently on top was angular, with a large sharp nose and beady black eyes furrowed into a fierce look. It was making strange, guttural noises as it taunted Sean. Its bottom half was a more jovial-looking, rounded face sporting a discordantly gleeful grin, chuckling as his body-sharing companion made multiple knife-hand jabs at Sean's face. The human was clutching a recently-acquired tea jug, using it as a shield to stop the blows.
The alien's hands must have been made of tougher stuff, as they pierced through the plastic exterior with each blow and sent a torrent of tea spilling to the ground. Bad news for Chen, as he immediately slipped on it and fell flat on his back. The fatter-faced half of the alien tried to make a kind of stomping motion with his arms to cause harm, but he backed up quickly. His mind began racing to think of a way to come out on top.
Meanwhile, in the freezing storage room in the back, another man was confronting another creature, a floating green eel, nearly twice a man's length, which seemed to be using its tail as prehensile limb to grab and toss objects at him. The man in question was Johnthan McQuarry, and any fascination with the creature was overridden by the fact that he was consistent in finding the heavy objects to throw. An entire keg of beer was crashing just to the right of his head as he ducked down for cover behind a stack of soda six-pack boxes. This moment of respite didn't last long, as the sound of a cracking whip came with the eel's tail stretching at least ten feet across the room to grab a box and toss it away. He'd need new cover, and a way to dispose of this creature.
The one furthest from the Plaza, in an alleyway shooting off from the southern road, was Luke Ennius. He'd run in here hoping for a bit of good luck, but alas it seemed to have run out at a very inopportune time. He was met face-to-face with a brick wall, telling him he'd run out of places to run. He turned back around, to face the creatures that were pursuing him. Both were vaguely feline and canine in nature, some strange hybrid mixed with an ample amount of crazy. Highly muscular, with back muscles nearly doubling their height, and boxy heads full of sharp teeth. They were almost entirely hairless, and their skin was a grotesque mottled brown. Only a mohawk of sorts running down the nape of their neck and up the center of their back indicated any hair on their bodies.
Both were snarling, and preparing to lunge at him, when the sound of a descending object caught their attention. They turned, to see a second figure landing into the alley-way with them. A strange, metallic creature, precisely five-feet tall, with an LCD for a face. Two blank, pixellated eyes stared at the creatures. Rocket Robo's programming had summoned it to here.
The two canid-like creatures were unsure of what to do for a moment, settling on dividing the efforts. One lunged at the newcomer, and the other charged and gnashed its teeth trying to take off Luke's leg.
Texas Joker 52:
Be a hero you told yourself, Batman, Robin, and Nightwing can do it, so can you. Why the hell did I think that was a good idea? I had a nice cushy job, five days a week I checked the shipping manifests and was out of the shop by tea-time. Why did I start doing this? Oh yeah, because I thought I could be the FUC-
It was at that moment that the four megaphones were raised again and blew away most of what little air conditioner he had left, as well as doing a good job of drowning out his ability to hear himself think. The situation in and on the building was beginning to heat up, and not just because of the cooling equipment being wantonly destroyed by the rampaging pegleg-roman-pirate-alien. The man in the mask dived behind the next nearest piece of cover left on the roof, again, another air conditioner. He glanced out to see it still shuffling along it's legs and saw the mega-tele-poles retract back into its center mass. Both were weak points, but he'd need something that could take them out, and he had just the thing, at least, he hoped he had the thing, the problem was he didn't have many clips of the stuff left. And considering the alienoclypse currently going on, he didn't think he'd have much chance to get a refill. Seeing the death-poles appear again, he quickly got his tender bits firmly situated behind the metal machinery that kept him from becoming a permanent addition to the Gotham Stock Exchange sidewalk and whatever else his parts happened to fly to after being blown apart by one of those damn things.
Alright, legs, megapoledeathsticklauncher, legs, soniccorpsescreecher, legs, shotgu- Fuck it, I'm out of names to call that thing, I'll just throw two and hope it works for the best. Speaking of which, I better time this right, otherwise I'm sonicgunmincemeat. Alright...GO
Willing himself to burst into action, he slung his rifle across his back, pulled two magazines filled with explosive rounds and started running after what he would call perfect timing. One of the clips sailed through the air and somehow jammed itself in one of the...sonicshotgunscreecherpoles, the other bouncing across the rooftop to hit one of the peglegs and subsequently be kicked outwards. Adrien jumped to the next air conditioning unit and grabbed the Redspotter off his back, adjusted one of the eye scopes on his mask, and loaded up his last explosive magazines. If he was lucky, he'd get a shot off at both of them and considering how volatile the damn things were when explosions happened near them, they'd blow up too. If he could wipe out the...polescreechercannon, he'd be in a much better position than he was right now. The legs would maybe cripple it, and that he'd be fine with, because it would give him better mobility and to jump around on its back and shoot the shit out of its back. It had to have a weakness there, right? The megayellercannons came out of that, that had to be a bad spot to shoot. If that failed, then the Red Eye was probably fucked. And he knew it. He activated his video camera as well, he may have to fight one of these things again, and video was as good a way as any to capture it in all its savage mismatched-era reminders.
Call him a hero, or vigilante, or sword-swinging badass, or even a monster - he didn't really care and...at this point...it was likely no one would care at this point. Because while our man, Stormy, did indeed keep his identity secret, the one thing that you could count on was that he was born on this planet, while the invaders were - suffice to say - not. You've gotta have priorities. Moral highhground will sometimes have to take a backseat to kicking alien ass. If the person in question can handle the opinions of others, then he may sleep the sleep of babies at night while doing what must be done. That is why the man with the odd shirt and the long coat with chains and a hat was here, and that is why the waspy remains of an alien creature were over there. What none of this explained was blood-curdling shout of a referencial battlecry...
...OR the decided bolt of lightning that leapt from Stormalong's free hand and at the wingless wasp trying to corner someone he didn't immediately recognize.
A few short moments ago...
The city was in ruins, mostly. It looked more like a popular post-apocalyptic wasteland game now than a bustling city. And knowing that the JL's Watchtower was blasted out of orbit did not make this any easier. Making it worse was the certain regret that he could've handled alot more of this a few years ago when he had Ixyzion. Tornadoes, lightning storms, transmigration into elemental form, a constant flow of energy for being deeply among his natural elements, the actual ability to travel through conductive objects including machine systems for Christ's sake! But that stupid remnant took that all away. And while he was well-'weathered' in the use of these powers now, he had less of it TO use. The hatted-and-coated msyery man was inside of some part of the local theater, having fought some of the good fight and avoided anything too heavy for the moment. He regretted not doing more, but he didn't want to throw sand in the ocean until he knew it would stem the tide. As it was, he had ducked in here because while he had ONE power that could take out the big-and-heavy for sure, he knew that the sheer numbers would have him use up that power and leave him dry while alone. That sucked.
"Alright, enough self-recriminations, dammit. Next you'll be talking to yourself and pacing around."
You know, like right now.
"Now, what I need to do is find someone to watch my back, maybe get a drink, figure out some idea on a center for all these things to attack, and most importantly...duck."
He did so because a wasp-like creature had attempted to blindside him. Mr. Stormalong drew his jagged black zweihander...
And that's where we come in. Now, he was trying to fry the wingless wasp overlooking Alan while approaching so that he could also swing the Sword of Maelstrom and try cutting it in half as well.
"You know, this is the really the first time I've ever had any contact with extra-terrestrial life. But, even if I don't know anything about you or your culture, I still get the impression that you're one ugly son of a bitch."
The monstrosity's roar nearly deafened the thief as it echoed around the innards of the somehow mostly intact bank, a perverse, elephantine bellow that was clearly not of this world. Even as he reflexively covering his ears against the thunderous sonic barrage, the target of the beast's wrath found that he was unable to escape the horrid stench that accompanied the uproar; either the creature had never heard of dental hygiene, or relied on its breath to paralyze its prey. "...So are you trying to talk to me, or was that just to look intimidating? Because honestly, you're kind of failing on both fronts."
Whether or not the alien understood the query, it was able to recognize the taunting tone in Mark's voice. With another booming howl, the titanic beast lifted one of its muscled bound legs and slammed it back into the ground, forming a small crater and sending a series of cracks spider-webbing through the once flawless marble. Gulping noticeably, Mark briefly considered what a blow like that could do to his torso. He quickly decided that such detrimental thoughts would be best saved for later, and that it would probably be better to focus on the half-ton of gray skinned muscle currently barreling towards him at a tremendous speed. Should probably dodge that.
As the creature charged, Mark brought his right arm to his chest, clenching his fingers and activating the mass of metal and electronics clamped around his limb. Focusing on his body, the tuxedo clad man began thinking happy thoughts, such as finding a $20 bill lying in the street, getting a brand new suit, or not being crushed to death by a giant alien monster. Then he remembered that he wasn't using pixie dust, and simply leaped into the air.
With a vastly decreased weight, Mark found himself soaring high into the air, way out of range of the enormous mass of muscle as it hurtled by beneath him. Adjusting his gauntlet, Mark began his descent as the creature futilely attempted to halt its charge; by the time the thief had lightly landed on the ground, the monster had slammed its body into the far wall, tearing through a bank of ATMs and embedding itself several feet into the plaster.
Pivoting in place, Mark spun around to face the incredible bulk of his foe, as it wrenched itself from the massive hole it had added to the wall. Pointing his palm towards the beast, the man focused on it, gritting his teeth as he steadily increased the gravitational force that bound the monster to the ground. "Come on now... time for a nap."
Shadow braced himself as the beam of energy approached him. He poured the dark energy from his body outward and formed it into a shield to defend himself from the attack. Unfortunately for him, the blast ripped through the shield and hit him in his chest plate, sending him falling back.
"Ah. That technique is effective against bullets, half as much against lasers. This, my friend, is quite the learning experience"
This summed up the last four days well. Jinaki Azande, known by many as Shadowstar, had never faced a foe such as this. Over the past year, he had grown accustom to the usual thug with a gun or darkling user, but these extraterrestrials were another matter entirely. Shadow knew he should be fearing for his life, and for the life of every human on the planet. But right now, he could only feel excitement from this chance to fight the unknown.
The darkly dressed hero rolled off the ground as fast as possible with a smirk underneath his mask, and faced down the strange, starfish like alien again. He could see the creature's arms glowing red for another charge, and decided against staying still for another dose of pain. Shadow dashed to the left to avoid the first blast. As the second came hurdling towards him, he leaped into the air and extended his arm. A collection of dark energy burst from his hand in the form of a blast, and hit the starfish right in the center.
The alien looked dazed for a moment, before it charged it's beam again. Shadow took the moment before it fired to shoot several more beams, but none of them seemed to do significant damage.
"Damn...alright. Looks like I'll need to get a bit closer."
Shadow formed a black wall around the front of the creature to cut off its line of sight to the hero and leaned down.
Let's hope he doesnt see this one coming.
Cavanaugh wasn't entirely sure how this medicine run had turned so ugly so fast. He had been aware, albeit vaguely of the invasion, but had had no idea of the kind of destruction, chaos and death that would have resulted. Not on this scale. The moment he stepped outside of his clinic, wearing his Octopus Skin outfit and a surgical mask to cover his maw as best as he could, he realized then that the need for basic medical supplies would be more dire than ever.
The trip there had been sketchy, though thankfully largely uneventful. He had used the alleys and sewers to his advantage, hiding when he could hear or see someone approaching him. He had even gotten into the pharmacy with minimal effort. It had been dark, deserted, and picked over by the locals, but what he considered the good stuff, the most basic, most useful drugs and supplies, had been there practically untouched.
That was where his run of good luck ended.
The moment he finished gathering as many supplies as he could into a large duffel bag, he turned to face a large brute, which he could only imagine was one of the invaders. It was then that he had been tossed up into the wall behind the counter as if he weighed nothing.
Once he got to his feet, he looked up at the alien and reached up, tearing off the surgical mask, revealing his many needle-sharp teeth. They were bared in a constant grin, which in this case was twisted slightly due to pain and terror. Within a split second, a rush of thoughts passed through his mind: This... Thing is too big, and armed, so he couldn't just fight it normally. He was also willing to assume it was relentless enough to chase him throughout Gotham if he ran. That left trying to disable it somehow.
The moment he finished evaluating his options, he dropped the duffel bag and dove to his right, while at the same time changing his skin to match his surroundings. His outfit did the same, thanks to the Octopus Skin it was made of. Then he quickly slid into the back room where he had been minutes before he encountered his new problem and hid.
His back was against a dark corner, hoping that the shadows would help hide him all the better as one hand reached into one of his pants pockets, taking out a pressure syringe that had a green ring marked around one end. Then he shook his head only slightly and slid it back. Better to use his teeth, more effective that way.
Then he waited.
Sean cursed in Chinese under his breath, watching the... whatever it was approaching him, making strange sounds as it did. He scrambled backwards, eyes never straying from his opponent.
With a mad chuckle, it lunged at him, and Sean barely had enough time to roll out of the way. Sean took advantage of its momentary distraction by scrambling to his feet, and reaching into his hoodie and pulling out a golden medallion decorated with strange symbols.
"Alright you blue bastard," he growled, "Let's see how you handle this!" The amulet in his hands flashed, and when the lighjt cleared, he was gone... but a huge tiger was in his place.
The alien did not seem perturbed by this, as it kept moving towards him. Sean would have gladly gonw with more banter, but as he was unable to speak in his transformed state, he settled for growling loudly before pouncing on the beast, causing it to crash into the shelf behind them.
Luke was being pursued by two alien hellhounds, they had spotted him through the window of a large Bed, Bath & Beyond, with Luke taking a midday nap in the bed section of course. His line of thinking had been What aliens would bother to investigate a gome furniture department store?" , but then again, he hadn't counted on the fact that the aliens couldn't recognise it as a harmless department store, I mean it's not like they knew English, or at least not to his knowledge anyway.
As they had disturbed his slumber, they had proceeded to give him chase through a couple of blocks, Luke trying to give Lady Luck some time to act on his behalf, but to no avail. He had turned the corner into an alleyway that had led directly into a dead end. It seemed that She was not going to save his ass today, that much was certain.
He turned to face the pair beasts, getting a closer look at just how disgustingly deadly they really were. They were clearly bloodthirsty and ravenous, almost as long as he was tall, he would hardly make for a snack he thought as he peered at their colossal maws, filled with rows of needle-like teeth, salivating in anticipation.
A sensation trickled it's way up and down his spine. What was this feeling? Trepidation? He hadn't felt this vulnerable in years, but the almost instant vaporisation of Earth's mightiest heroes showed just how vulnerable we all really were.
Guess I'll just have to this the old fashioned way...
He gripped the brim of his hat as a gust of wind rose from inside his jacket, his coat tails billowing in the wind as a set of cards levitated around him one-by-one.
"Hello beasties" he said as a singular card placed itself in between his thumb and forefinger, as if ready to flick it into a hat.
It was just then that he heard the sound of jet thrusters, as a metal man landed beside him,ut five feet tall, heavily armored, and it's "face" composed of an LCD screen.
"What the... huh, guess The Lady does work in mysterious ways..."
he said as he flashed an almost faux smile, no longer worried about the situation, the inherent danger had dissipated. But was immediately replaced as only one of the canids attacked the newcomer, the other instead pounced towards Luke, attacking to savage his right leg. He instinctually took a leap of faith, so to speak, and hopped just as the monster was an inch away, his foot landing on it's head as he then used it as a stepping stone to turn and bounce off the wall, throwing his card at the vicious cur mid air, it's edge cutting deep into one of it's back hindquarters as he landed back to back with his unsung hero, who had also temporarily dispatched of it's aggressor.
"This is certainly turning into a strange day indeed"
"NO!NO!NO!NO!NO!" Felicia yelled out.
It was supposed to be simple, but sudden arrival of these creatures had sent many people into a state of shock and a hurried panic. No longer could the Justice League provide the protection they promised as the peoples' hopes vanished into thin air above the atmosphere. She had narrowly survived the attack on the city and now Felicia did all she could to survive along with other Gothamites. Gathering what remained from a destroyed theater at the end of the plaza, she hoped it would be simple.
Felicia used every single limb possible to get herself out of the weapon's range. She was desperate and so was the parasite. The bag that had contained scavenged goods was sucked into the vortex which resembled a white black hole as odd as it may have sounded. Felicia was clawing at the surface of the pavement with her tentacles planting themselves in the ground for support. As she used her main arms and legs to get away, one of her tendrils resorted to throwing objects towards the creature that had her in its grasp. Most of the items were rubble being picked up by the vortex's grasp. Bricks, rocks, metal rebar, anything to make the creature drop the weapon. The barrage of debris paid off as a car door threw the creature off and Felicia jumped to her feet. Then she took the opportunity to throw the rest of the car towards the beast.
"Take this!" She yelled out. Felicia hoped that the four-door sedan would defeat the alien or at least slow it down for her to escape with her life.
For about the hundredth time that night, Warden thanked God and Alexander for the armor that sheathed her body. Even with it, everything burned and ached. She was tired and sore, cut in a dozen places from her armor digging into her flesh, a nasty burn across her shoulder blades from an explosion. But she couldn't stop, couldn't slow down, couldn't relax for a moment. Alexander had taught her that. Taught her so much more.
Where are you, Uncle?
Another blast came, but she was already out of the way. Time itself seemed to slow down around as she retreated, dropping back to take cover behind another car. Before the disintegration ray could burn through it again, she grabbed the trunk latch and was rewarded by it popping free. Inside wasn't much, but exactly what she was hoping for. A car jack. A bag of groceries that had soured and gone foul. And most importantly, a tire iron.
She wrapped her fingers around it, lifted it and dove to the side, rolling behind another car as the beam struck it, this time compressing the gas tank and causing it to blast apart like a bottle rocket. For a moment, she lay there on the asphalt, catching her breath. Maybe it'd think she'd been disintegrated in the blast.
Then again, maybe not. A heartbeat after the thought ran through her mind, the monster stepped around the cars and stared down at the Warden lying on the asphalt, apparently defeated and helpless. Behind her mask, Rosemary grinned and fast as lightning rolled to her feet before throwing the tire iron at it. The improvised weapon struck the creature perfectly, smacking the gun and - if God had any love for her - destroying it.
In the span of a breath she weighed her options. This thing was like a bloodhound - if she ran away, could she evade it? Could she escape it? For two days she'd been running from it, and she knew that if she didn't escape soon, she wouldn't be able to keep going. Five minute rests and adrenaline could only sustain her for so long. But she'd fought this creature before - a quick examination showed the marks on its armor where she'd shot it with a fallen policeman's Glock. Four direct hits and nothing except scratches.
Use your environment to your advantage.
Gotham had one thing in abundance.
For the first time since the League was defeated, a smile crossed Rosemary's face. She dropped into a sprint, heading for a section clear of cars. The momentary surprise move bought her a small but significant head start and she managed to clear the section in rapid time, reaching an abandoned pickup truck and slamming her fist into the window, unlocking it and pulling the door open, then - to her luck - keys were still into the ignition, the fearful flight having robbed men and women of their usual cautions. She turned the car on and slammed on the accelerator, bringing the beast of a vehicle to life and driving it straight at the alien monster. As impact approached a yell ripped out of her throat, a primal cry of defiance and rage.
Three thousand pounds of Human ingenuity smashed into a much smaller alien invader. And while the truck's front fender was pretty unsightly, she had a feeling the alien was feeling much worse as she opened the door and stepped out.
"That's how we drive in Bludhaven, motherfucker. Had enough?"
Alan had been simply keeping his head low as soon as he had arrived in Gotham. Of all the places in the entire world, he had been wanting to avoid the infamous city as best he could but his bus had been diverted and he had been forced to spend the night. The artefact now lodged in his chest had been reason enough for him to avoid staying in metropolis: He had lost the man he had viewed like a father to this thing, and he wasn't about to endanger anybody else needlessly by staying in one place for too long.
He had to be scarce, almost like a shadow and one of those 'faces in the crowds' that people saw alot of. It was almost akin to being apart of some conspiracy film, but instead of it just being over at the end of the shoot he was stuck continuing playing his role of 'paranoid protagonist'. He hated knowing so little about why he was hunted, or even the people who were after him.
Perhaps knowing why was the wrong words to use: Ever since he had that spear tip lodged into his chest he had been different. The strange power he commanded over parallel surfaces and the thorned vines he could summon up at a moments notice were definitely something that gave credence to why these men had been hunting for the artefact. At-least, before they ended up crushed and sliced to death. He hadn't meant to do it, not really, but the usually peaceful and shy male found things hadn't made much sense over the last week.
He had always wished to be a superhero, and in a way fate had granted him his wish: He just wished his abilities hadn't come at the cost of everything in his old civilian life
Seven Minutes ago
Alan had been fleeing from some of the other creatures in the area, still not confident enough in his own abilities to attack. Plus, he was rather apprehensive towards violence in most cases unless he was enraged enough or provoked into lashing out after all options had been exhausted. He still had the memories of the corpses he had created back in the hospital burned into his mind and he was in no mood to repeat the performance.
He came to a stop as he spotted a vicious alien with strange bladed appendages on it's person, looming over a small child that was crying out for help. What Alan assumed to be the childs parents lay sprawled out on either side, their bodies subject to differing lacerations. Seeing the creature raise a blade up to slice the child in two caused something to snap inside Alan, who was quick to narrow his eyes at the creature and extend his wounded hand.
Several large thorned vines encircled the creature, forcing it's arms to it's sides as the child looked around in bewilderment.
"Run!" Alans order wasn't lost on the child, who quickly moved to run as fast as it could down the nearest alleyway whilst Alan turned it's attention back to the alien before him. As he tried to make the vines tighten, he noticed the creatures struggles start to cease. Turning one of it's blades in the opposite direction, it sliced upwards in a clean motion, severing the vines hold on him. Following up on Alans surprise it moved in quick succession, slicing through the vines in a made rush towards the surprised meta human as he stumbled back. Realizing his powers were useless he made a mad dash to the nearest building, a run down cinema, hoping to lose the creature there.
Looking up, Alan spotted the glimmer of a blade, fearing that he would again be blindsided by another of the creatures. He backed up against a nearby wall, before making the figure out as another human.
He sighed a bit more happily then he intended as the creature before him started to sharpen it's blades, wandering how he was going to be able to get out of this situation. His vines hadn't been all that useful against this creature, but...perhaps he could still be of some use.
Noticing the creatures distraction, he took a breath and closed his eyes before moving his hand up. A second later a small burst of vines sprung fourth from his injured hand, encircling the alien creature once more.
"Hurry, before it breaks it!"He called out to the newcomer, putting his trust in the man to stop the creature.
Slowly, Rocket Robo began to analyse the two alien beast. He had been flying around looking for another hero, but he spotted this man in a white suit being chased first, and Super-Ego forced him to make detour. Landing had caused the beasts to back off just a bit, and begin circling around the two of them. Inside his head, an internal dialogue began:
This human can not be allowed to come to any harm.
Alright so let him make a get-away and then the search can continue. Id, top three suggestions?
>> 1. Kill the Human.
I swear it's like you don't even listen.
>> 2. Kill the Beasts.
I don't think Super-Ego would be alright with the wanton killing.
>> 3. "Remove" the Human
I'll just ignore the quotation marks because that's not a terrible idea otherwise.
The robot snapped into motion quickly stepping behind the man in the white suit, " Hello and congratulations on getting yourself into trouble, my name is Rocket Robo, and where exactly do you live?" As he talked he slowly began to engage in jets in his feet. When their heads were even, Robo hooked his arms under Luke's armpits, and took off, taking both of them into the skies and out of the reach of the beasts.
"You see I need to know where to drop you off." Robo finished as he began cruising gentely between the Gotham's roof tops.
The day started out like any other, at least like any other day for a restless, mildly schizophrenic doctor of sciences with almost literally endless funding at his disposal would. He had been running trials consisting of exposing various bits of matter he'd managed to extract to all sorts of environments when one of the monitors he kept on his favorite cooking channels was flipped to an emergency news broadcast.
"Oh dear," muttered the doctor under his breath as he watched the horrific events unfold on the screen. He set down the vial of silvery fluid that had nearly boiled over and turned off his Bunson burner. "I think I'll go for groceries. Aye. Seems I'll not be able to call in fer 'em 'til this is o'er wit'."
With that, he grabbed his coat and bowler cap and headed into the chaos that was Gotham City. Normally, his attire would warrant some odd looks from passers by, though it seemed there were much more peculiar goings on in the streets. Pandemonium, sheer panic as people were running and screaming all around. Fires erupted, explosions boomed, and debris was thrown about as other-worldly creatures were wreaking havoc. All this only came to light when Johnathan has finished jotting down his latest theory regarding the viscous fluid that rested in his abode. He watched as people were slaughtered by strange beings in all manner of proportions. Struggling to scrawl down all he could in his journal, his pen flitted across the page until his eyes met with one of the creatures. A rather large, floating eel-like creature that did not appear that it would sit idly by as the man it set eyes on wrote his observations. The creature darted after John, who was forced to take refuge in a small shop and was chased into the large cold storage in the back...
Johnathan McQuarry's mind was hard at work as he stood in contemplation within the refrigerated room. Partly figuring out what to do about the creature that levitated not more than three meters on the other side of his castle of canned, carbonated beverages with which he was conveniently cornered, partly questioning the decision to come all this way to begin with, but mostly about what he intended to have for dinner that evening. A strange thought, indeed, for a man who had a good chance of not surviving the hour, but it occupied his mind nonetheless. Reaching behind him, the doctor removed a can from a pack of Barq's and cracked it open, sipping silently at the sarsaparilla based soda as the creature threw pack after pack, diminishing his cover rapidly. Swishing a swig in his mouth a bit, he paused when he noticed a compartment door on the wall near the floor.
John pried off the can's tab then tossed the rest of the drink over his shoulder and over his shrinking barrier before kneeling to better access the small compartment. With the can's tab, he swiftly unscrewed the door, pocketing the screws and casually setting the door aside as if he were a maintenance worker going about his business and not a man looking desperately for a means of survival. His eyes lit up and he grinned broadly as he saw what he had suspected was inside - the coiled transfer tubing for the liquid nitrogen coolant that kept the room at proper temperature for a cold storage. A quick scan of the immediate area was all John needed to find the very thing that would make his scheme go off flawlessly - the beer keg with a pump and hose attatchment included. A quite convenient bundle for any party-going frat boy, and no less convenient for the doctor's improvisations. In just a few moments' time, he had switched the output of the insulated tubing from the cooling systems to the beverage-serving pump, humming an old folk tune as if he were doing no more than tending to a peaceful garden. Needing a quick test, he pumped nitrogen into the hose and pulled the small trigger on the nozzle. The coolant quickly froze a small puddle of soda, satisfying John which led his humming to escalate into singing while he pumped until the nitrogen was fully pressurized in the hose.
"O wha is this has dune this deed,
And tauld the king o' me,
To send us oot at this time o' the year
To sail upon the sea?
Be't wind, be't weet, be't bail, be't sleet,
Our ship maun sail the faim;
The king's dochter o' Noroway,
It's we maun fetch her hame..."
Red Eye's first burst worked surprisingly well. He timed his shot at the precise moment the strange weaponized limb shot out to take aim, and the explosive rounds detonated. A puff of shrapnel pulped the creature's stalk, eliciting a muffled screech from within its armored paneling. He fired again at its feet, earning another detonation. This time, the limbs were not visibly harmed to any great extent. The shock of the blow was where the real value came, and the thing tumbled onto its side. Its peg legs waved helplessly in the air, and Adrien sighed in relief seeing the creature relatively neutralized.
As he sought a better look, he noticed a strange twitching coming from the armored panel facing in his direction. With a sudden lurch, the panel swung open to reveal a sloshing mass of pitch-colored flesh. Out of this came a tendril, with quickly attached itself to Adrien's chest.
He had approximately a second to think about how awful this was, before the tendril retracted, bringing Red Eye with it. He was brought within a few feet of the creature, which immediately used a push from the panel facing the ground to right its posture. The writhing mass of flesh shot out again, joining the tendril on his chest with a quartet wrapped around his ankles and wrists, stretching him out as far as he could go. The grip was incredibly strong. Another snaked out and began to move for his neck.
The wasp-like creature facing down Stormalong was expecting a swordfight, not some kind of lightning bolt. The electrical burst crackled through the air and zapped through its flesh. Smoke rose from it as its body convulsed in an odd manner, hissing and screaming the whole way through. But when the assault was done, it still stood, and was still brandishing its weapons for a try at its own game.
That is, until Alan's vines shot out from behind the snack bar, entangling it in a thicket. The wasp struggled to move, hissing as it tried to maneuver its blades to cut itself free. It would take a moment, and in that time it was vulnerable.
"Come on now... time for a nap."
The would-be thief's taunts did little in the way of soothing the savage beast. If anything, they only enraged it further. The gray creature did an about-face from its fresh dent in the wall and prepared to charge. Its steps were thunderous, and fast. At first. As the thief continued to focus himself on it, however, its pace slowed. Each plodding footstep came longer and longer after the last, until finally the creature was forced to a halt just out of reach. It tried to strike out with its arm, but could not quite reach. The ground groaned underneath it, until the floor buckled beneath its weight. The creature, trumpeting in defiance, was nonetheless forced to its knees, and then its hands, before finally flattening face-down against the earth.
He had likely never pushed the gauntlet that far, before, but it was very clearly effective.
Shadowstar's gamble seemed to be working. The star-like alien didn't immediately react when the wall appeared around it. It seemed to stop in place, confused by the construct. It fired several more blasts at it, but seemed to achieve no results.
The confusion did not last long. The alien began to pivot in place, slowly increasing in its rotations until it was a blur. Then, the tips of its arms began to glow. A red beam cut in every direction, until the wall surrounding it was overloaded by the sheer input of power, dropping it. The star creature stopped its lasers, but did not cease spinning, smashing into Shadowstar like a top and sending him hurtling off towards the door. He skidded across the floor, smashing out the door that led to the main room and found himself in the hallway leading to the main section from outside. A dull affair, with mahogany wood-like walls and only a few chairs off to the sides as furniture. Around the bend, he knew there was a ruined security station with a metal detector. It was too small for the star to get through, but running there would buy him a few seconds at best, since it could destroy the obstacle.
Whatever he chose to do, the creature was advancing, charging another pair of shots.
The saurian creature looked, at its most pleasant, absolutely enraged when the Good Doctor disappeared. Snarling, its eyes darted back and forth as it swiveled its body around in search of its prey. Its eyesight was of no use, and could not detect the man hiding in the corner. Cavanaugh could hear a snorting sound coming from the burly green creature; it was trying to sniff him out.
That seemed to be fruitless as well, as the creature continued to aimlessly wander through the aisles of products around the pharmacy. Something important to note for later--the camouflage he had adapted masked scent as well. He was beginning to suspect it might just give up, when it tried something new. Its mouth opened wide, and its tongue shot out, wriggling through the air for just a moment. The moment was all it needed, and its eyes narrowed in realization.
The suit did not mask taste, apparently.
The creature immediately spun on its heel, wrenching an entire shelf from its spot and tossing it straight into the Good Doctor. The impact shattered the object and did more than its fair share of damage to Cavanaugh himself, who was immediately floored from the impact.
His senses returned just in time to see the creature charging towards him, snarling as it made to slash with its claws.
The shelf crumbled and buckled under the combined weight of the alien creature and a fully-grown tiger. The both of them hit the floor, with Sean in the superior position; at least, traditionally so. The creature clearly had strength far beyond the average human, and with for arms to assist it, the two heads combined efforts and gave a massive shove. The tiger was knocked from its position and back towards the cash register, smacking the bar it was at and falling to the floor.
The goofier-looking alien was now on top, and the more gaunt-shaped head madly scrambled across the floor with its faster motions. The one up to opted for a large wind-up for a devastating punch aimed for the tiger's right side, facing them after falling down.
The weapon gripped by the strange creature was clearly meant for... doing whatever it was it did, to smaller objects. A sedan was well above its paygrade. Nonetheless, the mantis chose to hold its ground, and held its weapon up to take the incoming projectile.
The sedan was stopped in midair, just in front of the little swirling ball. All at once, the suction in front of it was blocked, allowing Felicia a moment to get out of range and behind cover. The car was less lucky, and bits of pieces of its hood began to disappear, breaking off in shards and dissipating within the orb. Then came chunks or rubber and wheels. Then the glass of the windshield, and the felt seating inside. The entire car in short order broke down into its basest elements, and found itself being choked down by the tiny rifle. It took nearly a minute, but at the end it was done. As the last chunk of car disappeared, the orb fell in upon itself, swallowing its own form and leaving a void where it had been just before. The mantis made an expression of some sort, but its face was so different from a human's that it was difficult to read. The muttering clicks and chirps it made were clearly quite angered, however.
It dropped the rifle to the ground, and looked back up as it reached into its belt and came up with a small palm-attached device, prepared to use it on Felicia if she had not been sharp enough to move.
Luke's new mongrel friend whined pathetically as the car tore into its hind left leg, splitting skin and flesh and letting strange olive-green blood spill out, dripping down its leg and to the ground beneath. But an animal like it did not think, not in the manner a sentient being would. Its first thought was not that it was clearly outmatched. Only that it was wounded and now, by position, quite cornered.
It turned and snarled, baring its teeth completely. Luke only then realized that there were significantly more teeth than any animal should have packed in there. All of them looked razor-sharp. Making more of its strange warning growls, the creature half-limped, half-charged Luke, this time anticipating a jump and leaping into the air to attack him as he moved vertically.
"That's how we drive in Bludhaven, motherfucker. Had enough?"
When Warden's commandeered truck hit the creature, it had flipped onto the hood and seemingly flown or rolled behind her, to lie limp in the rubble. So when she stepped out of the truck, the last thing she was expected for it to have acquired a grip on top of the truck. But that was precisely where a hand shot out from, gripping itself firmly around her throat.
Rosemary was lifted into the air with such force she feared her head would be ripped off. She was brought mask-to-mask with the armored creature that had pursued her so relentlessly. She heard a sound coming from within the mask, an unintelligible whispering followed by a burst of static as some sort of device activated. Its helmet projected the sound, and she heard it speak in a gravelly male voice. In English.
"Not enough. Not until I take you, and may fight you honorably."
He had no more words for her than that, and his piston fist slammed into her skull. He seemed to be holding back its full power, but it hurt like hell nonetheless. Every inch of her all the way down to her shoulders was rocked by the impact, and her head lolled back before coming back around, for a second blow. The impact knocked her back with such speed, for the second time she feared her head would be wrenched from its position.
As her vision blurred, and the third blow was prepared, she heard a small metallic chink noise. Her eyes drifted over to the side of the piston arm, which had just been pierced by a strange little device. It was red, with a yellow tip, almost shaped like a bird. Then it began to beep, and its center blinked red. The alien only had a second to register the impact before the little device detonated with the force of a breaching charge.
The creature lost its balance and was knocked off the truck, losing his hold on Rosemary in the process. Unharmed by the blast, she collapsed in the dirt, and saw a boot step past her. She looked up, and saw a a very familiar costume.
The cloaked man standing over her was Red Robin, clutching a long staff in one hand, tucked behind his right arm.
"Get up." he told her, a moment before rushing the alien. The armored creature took a blow straight to the head from a wide staff swing, cracking the armored plating and knocking him back a step. Red Robin was fast, and immediately swapped the staff to his other hand, swung it around his back, and tagged his foe in his side. The thing hunched over in pain, but followed up with an uppercut, connecting with the hero's jaw and knocking him back next to Rosemary. She could see blood trickling down from his lip, but he was already retracting into a stance to continue the fight.
The battle with the dogs was cut short as Rocket Robo grabbed hold of the man he'd encountered, and lifted him high into the air. The first thing on his mind was finding this stranger's home, dropping him off, and getting on with his day. No more heroics than was required. Alas, fate was not kind.
As he surveyed the area from his high spot, he could make out chaos in Gotham Plaza. On a nearby rooftop, a man was cornered and in immediate peril from some box-shaped creature, and in the Plaza proper, a pair of humans--one he recognized as notorious vigilante "Red Robin"--were squaring off with a more humanoid foe. There was also an insectoid creature seeking out another young woman.
This was terrible. More humans to save. More programming bearing down on his shoulders.
John reached the crescendo of his song right as his ad-hoc device was ready. A stream of cooling products barreled through the hose, delivering an ice-cold assault on the eel before it had any idea what hit it. Mist roiled over its body as the gadget worked its sweet, sciencey magic. When it cleared, all that was left was a hunk of ice on the floor. The eel was utterly frozen.
Felicia got into cover, wanting something in between her and that thing. She lifted herself up from the ground using her tentacles, and her body swung as she sought the vertical advantage by scaling the building next to them. While her two tendrils did the climbing, the free one continued its relentless bombardment of assorted debris. Felicia, looked up and desperately sought the cover of the roof of the theater. Whatever the monster back down had in store, she didn't want to experience it first hand at that range. Objects ranging from tiles to air-conditioners were being flung by Felicia's tendril in hopes of both slowing the beast down and hopefully wounding it until she could reach safety.
But in her hurried escape to the roof, her tendrils' movement caused the wall next to them to collapse inward. Felicia fell backwards into the room which was one of the many projector rooms. Felicia coughed as the dust settled from her fall into the room but then she remembered of her pursuer who was no doubt making his way to her. Not wanting to let that thing have an easy climb, Felicia tore the projector from ground and threw it out the hole along with several shelves.
She silently opened the door, leading out of the room and began to bolt in the opposite direction of the hole which was towards the lobby.
Cavanaugh felt himself tense as he saw the alien walk past him, blinking strange eyes, and then heard it try to sniff him out. He couldn't help but widen his grin just slightly. His smell and appearance were both masked as best as he could without actually turning invisible somehow. The fact that the corner he was in was dark only made his camouflage more effective.
He took the opportunity to slowly creep his way out of the shadows as the creature turned its back, following as silently as he could, waiting for the perfect opportunity to pounce on the brutes back and take a bite. Unfortunately, that opportune moment would never come. The alien turned abruptly and had picked up a nearby shelf, heaving it in his direction.
The impact knocked him on his ass and dazed him for a moment, making aches known across his chests carapace. The second he needed to take his breath made him all the more vulnerable when the large, saurian alien made a charge towards him, claws extended.
But what the Good Doctor lacked in strength and durability compared to the alien, he made up for in agility.
He quickly rolled to one side to avoid the aliens sweeping claws, then pushed himself to his feet and leapt. His own claws dug into the creatures back and left shoulder, giving him leverage to put his ill-conceived plan in action: He reared back, opened his maw as wide as he could, then bit down on the creatures shoulder.
He only hoped the paralytic toxin in his saliva would take effect soon.
Blood filled Rose's mouth after the first hit, and the second caused it to start pouring down her face as the ceramics of her mask cracked at the strikes, cutting into her face. She'd bitten her cheek, bitten her tongue. A tooth felt loose in her mouth, blood was pouring out of her nose. The coppery stench was soaking into the inner cushioning.
Her eyes closed, Death reaching out a cold hand to take her. Alexander is going to be so pissed when he sees this. She rasped for air, feebly kicking and striking the armor. I'm going to die here...just like the Justice League. Just like Lollapalooza and Dynamist and Bismarck. Her eyes snapped open at the names of the small-time heroes she'd seen butchered before her eyes. No. Not yet. She gathered the last of her strength for a desperate attack on it, one last strike before the end.
Turned out she didn't need to.
Time itself seemed to slow down. One moment she was drawing back a fist for one last strike at this monster, then she saw the bird-like device strike the creature's chest, the momentary reaction from the beast - unreadable behind the metal mask, but she could almost sense the shock and surprise through it. The blast, the momentary rush of heat she could feel through her armor. The force pushing her backwards.
If she had been rested and uninjured, she could have used her inhuman reflexes to land on her feet, ready to run or fight. As it was, she managed to soften her fall with her hands and roll away from the fight, coming up in a crouch a few feet away.
She took a heartbeat to assess the situation, and as she looked at her rescuer an almost fangirlish sense of glee rose in her belly - Red Robin. Robin III, one of Nightwing's successors to the Robin mantle. More than the sense of being in the presence of a real hero, a celebrity, was the sense that there was some hope - some of the real heroes had survived. Maybe it wasn't hopeless.
"I'm ready, Robin." She rasped. The mask already deepened her voice, and the damage to her throat made her voice sound even deeper, so the voice coming out of the mask sounded almost inhumanly deep. "What's the plan? I've got no idea how to kill this thing. Nothing I've done seems to leave a mark."
Dropping his composure for a brief moment, Mark allowed himself a sight of relief. Truth be told, he hadn't been certain this ploy would work; for all he knew the beast could have been strong enough to remain standing, even when under the effects of drastically heightened gravity. With that much brute strength, it was hard to tell how much power it would take to bring the creature down. Still, it looked like even a gigantic mass of muscles like that would succumb to its own weight, once amplified enough.
"Wait... What do I do now?"
The little part of Mark's mind that wasn't currently focused on keeping the monster pinned down found itself trying to assess his situation, and things were not looking good. Even if the beastie was subdued for now, odds were it was still quite conscious and just waiting for Mark to release it. If the thief dropped his focus for even an instant, he would undoubtedly be facing an even more pissed off adversary. And considering how close he was to the currently immobilized alien, it was unlikely that he'd get another chance to pin it.
Negotiations were clearly not an option, and there was no way he could possibly best the creature in combat. He could try to run away, but odds were the creature, once freed, would just chase him until it finally caught up. It looked like he'd have to be a bit more creative than that to be victorious, and creativity wasn't something he could really afford right now.
Hmm... Mark needed some way to trap the alien permanently, or at least long enough for him to escape. And didn't banks, especially big city banks, tend to have large, mostly ornamental vaults with very, very thick doors? Well, it wasn't like he was getting any other ideas.
Releasing his hold on the monstrosity, the thief began sprinting away as fast as he could, lightening his body to allow for maximum speed. Each second that ticked by was precious, and Mark made sure not to waste a single one as he leaped over desks and ducked through doorways, searching for the (Hopefully still standing) vault as though his life depended on it. Which it probably did.
The Red Eye first sighed in relief as the thing was brought to its knees, or at least, its equivalent. It was short-lived however as that tendril struck out and wrapped itself around his chest, knocking the Redspotter across the rooftop, the edge of its barrel barely hanging over the precipice. He grabbed the Redshot in its holster and clicked off the safety, taking aim at the black mass that suddenly jumped out at him and while he was able to get one shot off, Adrien wasn't exactly concerned with his accuracy at the moment as his limbs were wrenched to their max.
Well, I've seen enough hentai to know where this is going. But I'm not about to let this damn thing kill me here. I've got things to do and aliens to get rid of, starting with this ugly son of a bitch.
He didn't have too much time before he felt his card was up and so struggled against his bonds to no avail. He was however able to turn the hand that still had the gun in it at the tendril holding his other arm. Firing a half-dozen shots, the creature made some kind of screech similar to the one he'd heard from the louddeathsticklauncherofbellowingdoom's recent destruction and he reached for one of the two out of place weapons on his belt, both still sharp enough to shave with, as he made sure of everyday he went out. He cut the tendril holding his pistol hand and shook it, throwing it over the edge end over end, spewing an ichor somehow darker than the flesh.
"Come on, you alien piece of shit and tentacles,"He said, slashing at one of the tendrils holding a leg as he fired into the black mass from which these things had come,"Not so tough now that I've knocked you ov-*hurk*" The tendril that had aimed for his neck wrapped and had begun squeezing. His air supply running out, his pistol emptied into the black mass, and nothing to fight with but a Batarang and a Wing-Ding, he began slashing at the one around his neck, eventually slicing through, again spewing ichor the color of a night with a new moon, the one around his chest had retreated back into the midnight mass.
He gasped a few moments before going back to work on the ones on his legs, one weak enough now that he was able to pull it out, the other not so easy to get off him. Another tendril snaked out of the darkness and slammed into his chest, knocking him across the roof and right next to the Redspotter, his head fully clear of the building, looking down on the Plaza, where more of these alien guys were fighting other morons just like him.The Batarang and Wing-Ding went flying off in separate directions, the late Batman's weapon embedding itself in a nearby air unit, the Wing-Ding bounced across the roof and simply sat there.
Adrien leaped to his feet, flipping the rifle into his grasp, just in time to have another two tendrils attack. One firmly grabbing his leg, the other again wrapping around his arm. As he was pulled towards the writhing mass again, he began firing, he still had a few explosive rounds loaded up, if these didn't kill it, or at least make it let go of him, he was dead.
"To hell with you, you peglegged son of a bitch! Your kind may have killed the Bat, but don't you think for a second that I'm going to let you take me down that easily!"
Sean shook his head, looking up just as the creature delivered a powerful blow, sending him flying.
There was a bright glow as Sean reverted to human form, who winced and held his side. The alien was still coming after him, so he had to think fast.
Felicia was led down a short hallway, one that was extremely dark with no light save what naturally came from a Gotham evening spilling through the hole behind her. The power grid had been knocked out some time ago, so it was no surprise to her. It didn't make these places any less unnerving, though.
She thought she was approaching a door when a sudden noise from the other side startled her. She thought she could make out some strange... buzzing, perhaps? She stuck out her hands to feel, and realized there was indeed a door. One of her tendrils opened it ever-so-slightly from a safe distance, giving her a peek through.
She appeared to be exiting on the employee side of a concession stand in the theater. He didn't seem to notice her, but almost immediately to her right was a young man crouching, with vines twisting and gnarling out of his palm to ensnare something on the other side of the stand. That thing seemed to be the source of the buzzing, and as best as she could tell was probably another alien.
The gigantic lizard's pain would have been enough with just the claws raking its flesh. It was already screeching in angered agony, as the first layer of its flesh--which curiously seemed to lack blood--was torn to shreds by Cavanaugh. But the bite was what really did it. As soon as the teeth sunk in, the Good Doctor could feel the creature's flesh tighten in reaction. It screeched in an awful tongue, immediately charging for the door. Before he knew what had happened, he was along for the ride and taken out into Gotham Plaza. The beast reached around, grabbing the mutant by the nape of his neck and tossing him off into the ruined streets. He impacted a crosswalk light, denting the metal pole as he felt his back gain a fresh bruise. He hit the ground, just in time to see the creature charging again. It clearly had little in the way of strategy, just desperate to get a shot in.
The first blow raked Cavanaugh's chest, drawing a bit of blood, and the second barely missed his right ear. But the third went wide, striking quite off-center. The fourth was even worse, sluggish to the point that the once-human hardly had to think in avoiding it. The creature was slowing down, and quickly. The question was what to do with it once it finally stopped.
"What's the plan? I've got no idea how to kill this thing. Nothing I've done seems to leave a mark."
Red Robin grunted in acknowledgement; Warden could tell he was scanning his opponent for weaknesses. "Those are bullet marks on his chest, right?" Try as she might to ignore it, her first thought was how young he sounded. Possibly even a couple years younger than her. "His armor's tough stuff, don't bother trying to break through it. Looks like it has little shock absorption--MOVE LEFT."
Warden had to comply to avoid becoming dust, as the strange alien lifted his non-scorched wrist, out of which came a tube that immediately opened up with a volley of rapid slug shots. She skidded to a halt to see Red Robin went in the opposite direction, and now he and she were at the creature's 10 and 2 o'clock positions, respectively.
"He reacted strongly to my attacks, he's probably taking the most damage from your fists. Get in close, don't let him use his gadgets. Now go!"
The veteran hero took the charge, moving in with a jab from his staff. The armored alien dodged it, but was at once met with Red Robin's open palm, having just retrieved a device off of his belt. It slammed into the creature's face, splurting out a strange green jelly that coated his visor and immediately hardened into the solidity of a rock. As the strange foe fumbled, trying to scrape off the stuff blocking his vision, Red Robin twirled behind him and gave a massive THWACK to the back of his head with his staff. The alien stumbled forward towards Warden, open for another strike.
Mark's frantic pace was a good call. His eyes had turned away for maybe two seconds before he heard the worst sound possible: an elephant-sized creature that very much wanted him dead jumping to its feet in about a single second. He charged out of the safety deposit box area as fast as his legs could take him, and just behind him he heard (and felt) the thunderous footsteps of the alien giving chase. He'd need to do this just right. Thankfully, the helpful signs left for the guards informed him that the vault was down the hall and off to his right. He judged the distance by sight, and guessed it was about fifty yards until the turn--just how big WAS this bank? He knew that this must have been the only building around the plaza with an underground section, but he didn't think they had enough room to build that much.
It was going to be a gamble, since he could already tell that the creature was catching up on him. It was silent now. Why was that even scarier?
Once again his selection of explosive rounds proved to be lifesaving for Adrien. The rounds impacted the creature with a far more devastating effect than he'd intended. Its screeches were cut short as a bullet pierced through the centermost part of the mass, killing it instantly. But he was a bit desperate; just enough to have forgotten to take his finger off the trigger. The rounds struck the creature with such force, combined with its already backpedaling motion to try and escape, that it went hurtling over the edge of the building.
And with its death throes only tightening its grip, Red Eye was dragged along with it. He scrambled on the ground, trying to keep a hold on, but it was of no use. Barely remembering to keep a hold on his rifle, he went toppling off the side of the building, landing on the far side of Gotham Plaza.
A few moments later, his senses returned. Primarily that of touch, and its close cousin pain. His entire body felt like a car wreck, and he could already tell to his own displeasure that he had landed right in the middle of the ichor-coated pile of alien flesh. But he was alive. And it was dead.
And his Wing-Ding and Batarang were still on the roof.
The two-headed alien flipped as it dashed over, the goofier one taking a more forceful charge sort of approach, while the top-most one opened up with a flurry of open-palmed strikes aimed for the human's abdomen, capping it off with a flat-out rude poke to the eyes.
So young...teenager and he could probably kick my ass with ease. God, what did Batman teach them? I've got a long way to go. Somehow his youth seemed to amplify the aura of heroism he put out, the sense that with him leading the way they could win this fight, and the fight afterwards, and the one after, until they had driven these creatures off their world and avenged the death of their champions.
As the alien warrior staggered her way, Rosemary charged, coming into engagement range and pivoting on her hips, bringing her boot up and around in a powerful roundhouse kick. Normally she'd expect the alien to dodge it or stop her by some means, but given the gunk all over its face, she wasn't expecting that. Strike while the iron is hot.
The moment Cavanaugh felt the creature scream, he felt a faint sense of triumph in getting some of his own back. Then he felt it barrel forward, and out of the pharmacy, and his eyes widened in shock as he realized that he was going to be in for quite the ride. Said ride was immediately cut short as he was grabbed, and then thrown bodily forward. His mind only had enough time to register two words: "Oh, shit.".
His back impacted the metal pole of a crosswalk light with enough force to dent the metal, bruise his carapace nastily, and knock the wind out of him for the third time that day, causing him to cough and sputter. In the time it took to do that, the alien charged at him again, its razor-sharp claws tearing into his shirt and making ragged cuts in his chest.
The second blow startled him, but he had had the presence of mind to twist out of the way, while the third and fourth were sloppily made, and much easier to dodge. His drool had taken its toll, and the only encouraged Cavanaugh to force himself up and finish the job. Putting his bruises and the fact that his chest was quickly being covered with his own neon-orange blood, he got to his feet and rushed forward to the nearest extremity he could get a hold of, in this case the brutes right arm.
Digging in his claws one more time, he bit down, hoping a second 'dose' would be enough to keep the creature down for good for awhile. After all, his saliva was more effective the more of it entered the bloodstream.
Shadow ran around the creature using the safety of his dark wall. He had hoped it would buy him enough time to strike with his darkness powered harpoon. However, the wall unexpectedly came down. The creature was now spinning at an accelerated rate, and caught Shadow off guard.
Shadowstar flew back through the the door of the room. He laid there for only a moment, before looking around at his surroundings.
Excellent. No more wide open areas. That leaves room for tactical advantages. But where...
Shadow laid his eyes on the path leading to the security checkpoint. That would be the best place to get some distance from it more a bit of time. He rolled onto his feet and ran around the bend as fast as he could, all the while the star creature took shots at the fleeing hero with it's energy beams. Shadow finally made it past the station before taking a look back at his pursuer and thinking through his options.
He looked from the creature to the ceiling above him. Once it looked like the star creature was going to fire again he took action. He dodged the beams as best he could, getting his left greave blasted off for his efforts. He put up another dark wall between himself and the star. Knowing this would not buy him much time, he sent a wave of dark energy towards the ceiling to make a hole in it, then blasted a hole next to where his greave fell off. He made a lead fron the wall beside him and up through the hole in the ceiling.
Knowing that the creature would be cutting through the dark wall soon, he drew his harpoon and waited.
Sean saw the attack coming and knrew he had a limited time to react. Grabbing his amulet, he concentrated...
There was another flash as the creature's attack struck, tearing through a shelf with, well, inhuman speed and strength. It made a confused noise as it looked for its' target.
Then the lower head let out a snarl in its' foreign tounge as it spotted a black rat running away as fast as it's little legs could take it.
Pain and a car wreck didn't even begin to describe what Adrien felt, his body felt somewhat numb still from the shock of the fall, though he was lucky enough to still have his rifle and none of his bones seemed to be broken, though he couldn't be sure of that until he got up. It was difficult at first, as the creature's ooze was slippery and coated everything within thirty yards or more, some even staining a substantial part of the Stock Exchange. He reached to his jacket and pulled out another magazine for the rifle,returning the other to it's place, he was out of explosive rounds, but that didn't mean he was out of the fight now.
Seeing his pistol and other gadgets not on his belt, he sighed to himself.
Why did it have to be this guy? Why couldn't it have been one of the other monstrosities scattered around here? The damn thing made me waste my resources.
He fired one more shot into the black mass, just to be sure it was dead, wiped off the gore from his uniform and gun, and began jogging back towards the roof of the Exchange. Those things were his backups and good luck charms, he wasn't about to let some alien prick pick them up as trophies or some other hero other than himself or their real owners start using them. Whatever had killed the League was powerful, and although it began hitting Adrien that his childhood idol and one of his inspirations for becoming the Red Eye was gone, destroyed in whatever had decimated the Watchtower, he was able to reach it relatively easily. Nothing but a few of the lesser invaders attacked him, and he finished them off easily.
Reaching the rooftop, he gathered his gadgets and put them in their places, Wing-Ding, and especially Batarang, handled with extreme care. Not just because of how sharp and dangerous they were, but also because of the symbols they represented. He reloaded his pistol with a fresh clip and holstered it. It was then that he dropped his rifle, collapsed on the rooftop, and struck out with his fist against the air unit he had fallen beside.
"FUCK YOU!,"He screamed to the sky,his anger and loss taking precedence over the current dangerous situation, he was on the roof, so he didn't care at the moment,"YOU HAD TO KILL THEM ALL DIDN'T YOU! I'M NOT ABOUT TO LET YOU SURVIVE THIS NOW!"
His tirade at the powers that be was short, but expressive, his body, and particularly his hand, now hurt worse than before, and he began to feel serious swelling around his knuckles and a bit in his palm. This wasn't over yet, there were still people and more importantly, aliens and heroes battling in the streets below. He turned off the camera set to record his little fight with the thing and chose himself a spot where he had the best view of the fights going on down there.
To his right, there was a woman, judging by the movements and general clothing, fighting with something in a suit, another of the aliens, he expected, and...who was that?...He adjusted his sights again, because of a block of rubble in the way...RED ROBIN?! So they weren't all dead! Hope surged through Adrien at this thought and after a quick assessment, felt that his skills weren't needed, he moved on to the next fight.
Almost directly underneath him a man in, was that a tux and a mask? Running from something else that made his stomach turn a bit, it appeared unfazed by the fact that it ran through three blocks of concrete, each about two inches thick. That wasn't normal to be sure. And judging by that skin, he wasn't going to be able to pierce it from up here, or even hit it as the two ran into the bank, one much quicker and smoother, the alien just barreling through the outer wall.
To his left, he wasn't sure which was the invader and which was the hero fighting it. One appeared much more humanoid, but was missing his bottom jaw by the looks of it and had teeth the size of his fingers. The other was much more reptilian and was slowing, both were bloodied at the least, so he went by his guy feeling and fired three shots at the reptile one, two to the center most mass, and one to the back of the head was where they should hit, but he couldn't be sure until they struck the target.
"Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit!" Mark's every footstep was punctuated by a muttered curse as he desperately dashed down the hallway, his pursuer drawing ever closer. Dear God, he could taste its breath, like some kind of rotten meat mixed with sewage and broccoli. The turn leading towards the vault was coming closer and closer, but at this rate he would be ripped in two before he made it; he had to find a way to impede the monster, or it was curtains for him.
Reflexively, the thief's left hand reached up and snaked into one of his backpack's many pockets, his fingers curling around one of the many small spheres kept within. "Choke on this you bastard!"
Snapping his wrist, Mark hurled the sphere towards the ground in front of him, smiling as it exploded into a large, thick cloud of smoke. Making sure to hold his breath, he charged into the cloud; even with his vision impaired, he was still able to run in a relatively straight direction. The alien, on the other hand, was not so lucky. Letting out a startled roar as in entered the smoke, the creature found itself disoriented and confused, forced to slow down lest it bounce off a few walls.
In a matter of seconds Mark found himself on the other side of the smoke, and a mere handful of yards away from his next turn. By the time he had shifted his weight to slide through the doorway, his pursuer had also managed to burst through the cloud, resuming its pursuit with another thunderous roar. As he registered the almighty cry, the thief eagerly scanned the large room before him, stopping once he spotted the large, and thankfully open, vault (Complete with an enormous, unnecessarily ornate door). Let's hope it's as dumb as it looks.
Slowing down to a light jog, Mark only had to wait a handful of seconds before the monster skidded into view behind him, its rough feet gouging furrows in the tile as it turned. Once more the beast began to charge, towards both Mark and the open maw of the vault. And... now!
Once more Mark leaped upwards, hoping that the creature would be just moronic enough to barrel into the massive opening.
He only stopped with the lightning bolting because of the sudden movement of vines. Our man Stormy knew better than to keep that up while Alan was trying to ensnare the beast. The rules of conductivity still applied and the other guy would've gotten himself electrocuted otherwise. With that in mind, the incapacitated-but-wait-not-for-long wingless wasp didn't HAVE the chance to get free. Mr. Stormalong closed the gap rapdily and flashed fire along his blade as he did so. A heated magical sword tends to cut through things alot quicker than without, and he wanted this to be quite...decisive. They didn't really have time to fool around here, not even to spare the vines that were used to tie the beast up.
That having been handled...there was only one question remaining.
"Seen anyone else? Or is it just you and me right now?"
Alan observed the alien creature being sliced in twain by the heated blade, his vines going slack once the creatures life had been ended. The blonde haired male was a bit surprised at the use of a sword against an alien creature, but he had gotten the vibe that Mr. Stormalong wasn't exactly a normal person: It was the lightning that he had used to shock the creature into submission before that had alot to do with him reaching that opinion, but the fact remained he had just saved his ass from being a shish-kebab.
The question caused him to pause a moment before answering.
"Uhh, havn't seen anyone here but...i saw a few outside running away. So, yeah, just you and me right now". He figured it was best to stay with the electrokinetic swordsman for the time-being if he was to have any hope getting out unscathed.
He shook off whatever might've clung to his sword and then put it on his back. The eyes of the hatted fellow were in thought-mode, hand to his chin as he let off a "Hmmm" in regards to the situation. There were others, but they didn't know where. Chances are, the odds of coming out of this disaster in one piece depended upon finding others or finding refuge long enough to formulate a workable plan of counter-attack. Ideally, you gain both of these, but that may not be likely at the moment.
"Well, I dunno if you're with me, but there's a world out there and it ain't saving itself. We need those others, or this shit's gonna become a permanent situation...and that just cramps my style."
It was an invite to follow him into madness, but at least he wasn't demanding it. Who knows what this guy was up for? The alien armies of hell were fricking legion out there, so the 'save the world' shtick was gonna take a while even under the best of conditions!
Strike while the iron is hot.
Warden's foot connected right with what she strongly suspected was the alien's temple. A groan of intense pain rumbled around in his helmet, as the force spun him around and down to the ground. The alien groaned, dazed, only to have Red Robin approach, slipping his fingers beneath his armor to stand him back up and deliver a punch straight to his head. The already rocked alien nearly went right back to the ground, staggering backwards and trying to throw a haphazard punch. The fact that it was blind AND dazed made this a moot point, and the former sidekick ducked under the blow, grabbing the weighted end of his cape and swinging it.
The blow sent the alien spinning, but only for a moment, as he finally managed to get a grip on the gunk covering his visor and tear the majority of it off. As it happened, the winded creature was staring straight at Warden, and came at her with a knife ejecting out from under his wrist. He lunched from above, aiming to drive it down into her shoulder blade.
Cavanaugh's teeth sunk deep, paralytic drool seeping into the flesh of the creature. It screeched and moaned in agony, but its sounds slowly faded as it lost all control of its muscles. It collapsed to the ground in a heap, a slow hiss of air escaping it. The Good Doctor had a moment to relax, finally seeing his foe immobilized. Now, about that medicine--
THWIP. THWIP. THWIP.
The air seemed to split with the sound of passing projectiles, as the reptile's body shivered three times. One for each bullet that dug itself into his flesh. Two around the spinal column, and another right in the back of its skull.
Shadowstar could no longer see the star-like alien from the other side of the wall. He could sure hear it, though. The sound of buzzing laser blasts fruitlessly smacked against his wall a few times. But then the air began to shift, and he could tell it was spinning again. He'd have to time this perfectly if his plan was going to work. The star would only give him a second of opportunity.
Sure enough, the lasers were redoubled in their efforts, and he could hear the creature impacting against the wall once, twice, and then a third time. One the third attempt, the dark wall shattered and the star came spinning through, lasers already charging.
Upon seeing the rat making its escape, the four-armed alien opted to forgo a standing position, and dropped down to both sets of arms were functioning as legs for the moment. With alarming coordination, considering the opposing appearances in the natures of the head, the creature/s charged after it, the more agile head taking the lead and attempting to smack and smash the rat with a hand as they scurried around the aisles of the convenience store.
Mark's foe was many things. Massive, fast, strong. Smart was not among its traits. It charged right under the thief and into the vault behind it, roaring at the top of its lungs as it attempted to skid to a halt and turn around. All that accomplished was making it slip and slide in even further than it would have if he'd slowed to a halt naturally. It crashed against the opposing wall of the vault, already scrambling to its feet. There were only moments to spare.
The theater lobby was more or less quiet with the last of the wasps dead. Blood of multiple colors stained the floors, but it was worth noting that other than what they had contributed moments before, no corpses were to be seen around the theater. It had been the same story wherever Alan, Stormalong, or Felicia went. Humans were being slaughtered by the thousands, but their corpses were still disappearing, to God knows where. They also had no explanation for why, exactly, many humans were being taken alive. But it had been the same story almost every time, from what they'd heard from refugees and seen for themselves.
A large group of people, often those openly fighting back against the invaders, would be gathered in an open and spacious, but ultimately confined area, at which time a frigate would descend, and... capture... them...
Outside, the sounds of battle could be heard.
"It's forty miles frae Aberdeen,
And fifty fathoms deep,
And there lies guid Sir Patrick Spence,
Wi' the Sects lords at his feet!"
Dr. McQuarry bellowed this last verse as he tossed his fresh and finely fashioned nitrogen pump aside. Feeling rather untidy, he readjusted his bowler cap, refitted his spectacles, then made an attempt to straighten his bow tie which resulted in only a similar tilt in the opposite direction. Feeling presentable, he approached the frozen specimen with caution, wondering if the creature was dead or merely just lying dormant in its quite literally frozen state. A brief examination with the toe of his shoe confirmed that the creature was no longer living when its flesh cracked and out spilled organs and fluid that had likely been thickened by the quick-freezing of the exterior of the beast. The doctor desperately wished he had some sort of container that he could bring a sample to his laboratory with, or better yet some sort of vehicle with which to transport it in. He knelt beside it and gently stroked its head, speaking softly as he did so. "I will ensure tha' yer death will no' 'ave been in vain, ye magnificent bastard."
Not feeling much up to reading the creature its last rites, John stood started for the cold storage's exit, determined to find some means of transportation or even a helping hand that would be willing to carry it with him. As he walked into the store, he saw that the place was a total mess with shelves turned sideways and the floor littered with their former contents. Crunching with nearly every step as his shoes fell upon bags of various snack items, the doctor made it only a few feet before swift movement caught his eye. A large, black rat was scurrying across the floor at an alarming speed, causing McQuarry's brows to rise in surprise shortly before furrowing in disappointment. "Buggers 'aven't the decency to pick up the bloody place, an' now the 'ole store's gone to the bloody rats! Ne'er would I 'ave to deal wit' such..."
Johnathan froze in place and his words trailed off as he saw another strange creature, this one even stranger than the last. It had four arms and two heads, one at the each of it, with faces that even a mother would have trouble finding affection for. The half-body below appeared to act as feet while the other half took the role of a torso. One could only imagine how the digestive system of such a creature would function, though most would rather not even consider the possibilities given its appearance. Suddenly, the beast appeared to be giving chase to the rat darting betwixt the aisles, the upper half using its arms in attempt to swat the agile rodent.
"My God," Johnathan muttered under his breath. "Wha' is this absolutely gorgeous specimen the very 'ands of fate 'ave set down before me?"