In The Eye of The Collector (Closed, started, seeking Co-GM)

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John looked down at his slightly dusty suit then to the side at Drakes similar attire.

"Well, maybe, wouldn't want you to get shot at by people thinking you're me," He said, chuckling slightly.

Examining the floating drone he said " As to why we're here..... I'm sure the man about to walk through the door will tell us, some sort of resistance."

As foretold the faceless man walked in, John stood to greet him, smiling again. "Honour to finally meet you, hey, don't give me that look!" He giggled and sat with the others.

The drone's screen once again showed Zaitsev's face, and his deep accented voice came through the speaker.

"I have bad news comrades. The Collective general called Justice has assassinated the president of Chile. There is no longer any worth-while resistance in South America."

Question sighed and ushered everyone inside. The office was rather messy with a hesitantly installed computer system, a couple of file cabinets lining the wall behind the desk and a set of chairs crowding the area in front of it.

He took a seat and folded his hands on the desk.

"I'll be brief and blunt; We're in a deep hole. I've known this day would come and have tried to warn anyone who mattered, but since they couldn't see what I saw happening, they didn't listen. Most of the people that could do much of anything about the Collective have either been captured and possibly repurposed for their use, killed or disappeared. I managed to get this bunker together as a little refuge from the storm.

Problem is, we're only safe so long as the Collective isn't interested in Africa, that means we have until everything else of value has been taken, before they come here. This is the headquarters of the world's last stand against the collective.

However, I'm not what you'd consider a 'leader'. That role always suited Superman or Batman best, but at the moment Superman is now Yujiro Hanma's personal WMD and any and all contact with Batman has been lost.

One thing I have noticed, however is that while the Grand Four serve the same entity-this 'Collector', they seem to operate separately. So, by theory, what we could do is lend assistance to any forces who are fighting the Collective and take down each general one-by-one until none are left.

You guys come from vastly different backgrounds and I'm sure you have different motives to be here, but what I'm asking is that we all save those differences and grudges for a different day when some secret society isn't destroying the world as we know it.

So, what say you?"

Dragon, though having remained silent for the time being simply nodded his head.

"So, what's first?" There was more he wanted to ask, such as "How does a low profile costumed vigilante know my father", but it was best not to ask right that second.

"Oh, yes. Great Idea. Let's all ignore the fact for a minute here that the Russian will probably try and take over the world as soon as, somehow, we stop these freaks. And we'll be in the same boat again. And when he's dead and gone, like all petty warlords are, we'll have to deal with people that are superior in everyone to a mere human. You think I want to face down the Russian, and you are saying Superman is allowing himself to be a pin-point nuke for the enemy? The only way we're going to get anywhere here is if Russia falls to the Collective, just like every country that could do anything about it." Drake crossed his arms.

"Of course, the fact that Russia is still standing allows access to a rather large nuclear arsenal, which, quite frankly, I'm surprised 'Vodka Vodka Boris Yeltsin' has used yet."

Zaitsev gave a lazy, but taunting grin.

"Your creative name calling astounds me. Are you truly suggesting that the best thing to do is allow the collective to acquire the resources of one of the last remaining world powers? You do realize we are trying to stop them, not make them invincible? And we have indeed tried to deploy Nuclear weapons against their Asian forces, but they were counteracted by non-other than Superman, as well as Gigantor."

The drone turned to face The Question.

"We all know that man's response to this already. But the reality is that I am the most qualified to lead. I have led armies, and I am currently leading a country, neither of which Superman can claim."

A blade nicked Buddy's arm as he began to fall god knows how many feet from where he was.

"Ohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrap!"

He crashed into the ground, his whole body writhing in pain. There was no escape. The best he could hope for was that they'd be quick about it.

Tradx had walked in with the necromancer, he would have made a comment but he was being hurried along and had to begin hopping to reach his seat in time. Apparently the collectors were a big deal and once all the talking had finished, Tradx slammed his hand on the table and yelled at the top of his lungs.

"Count me in! Those guys are assholes! Consider their heads plus one in bullets!" Tradx cared little for the planet, but he figured he might as well do some good while here and their interests mixed. Seemed like a fair deal.

"I'm saying that it doesn't matter if we win, because with you here we still lose." Drake turned to the Question. "I've heard of you. You see the patterns no one else sees. Except me. You have to realize that life under the Russian is no better than life under the Collective. Now you brought me here for a reason, which means you can't do this without me. If you want me in, the Russian comes here. In person. No doubles, no tricks. And when it's over, he gives up his government."

The Question sighed behind his mask.

"Please, keep in mind, the point is; that we need to work together if we're to make it out of this. If you wish, we can go back to being enemies after the Collector and his little band of superpowered misfits are dealt with." Question said, then turned his attention toward's the droid.

"That is not to say, however, that we're going to give Mother Russia a one up over the rest of the world. Which is to say, that I agree with young Drake here, Mr Zaitsev. Considering your... Position on world politics, it would be foolish on my part to give you a dagger and trust you not to stab us all in the back, if you understand me? Hence, I must request that you come and lend your assistance in this personally: No representatives, just you."

world_of_dragons:
SNIP

Viking Incognito:

world_of_dragons:
SNIP

The necromancer stayed silent as the dead. Just listening to the pawns bicker about who would rule after the The Collective was destroyed. When anyone talks about death or murder his beady little glowing eyes shifted to a pleasant almost cartoon-sh expression.

The Necromancer weighed his options and jumped his tiny stature onto the table. Pointing at all in a menacing manner to shut them up. It helped with the few summoned skeletons emerging from the shadows with purple arcane mists trailing off them like steam.

" Your pettiness tires my patience. The leader of a New Russia is here to help with ... what-ever-you-living-people call it... this revolution. Russia is the last man standing, deal with it. No Amerikas, no Asia, No Atlantis, non of the Europeans countries and now the last worth while Afrika government has fallen. After we clean up the Collective; the vacuum of power may last generations as other "powerful" people try to take the reigns. Hell, I was thinking Supes would be the one for Amerika but now that he is a weapon for the Collective.. I'd bet you'd even settle for that New York Menace Spiderman. Russia is the only ones left to help rebuild the world after what we have to do... unless you want cloud bears or magical ponies to rule your respective lives. "

Folding his arms he jumps down.

"Now... continue with your life essence ticking away at pointlessness or use it for what ever you creatures think is important."

His sits down awaiting for this meeting to continue on. Even giving the universal gesture of continue.

with the sandstorm raging harder than ever, Landon staggers in to the front gates of the compound.

"Hello? anyone here? i could really use some water right about now" pauses for a moment. "and maybe a pizza?"

The door creaked open as someone yanked Landon inside.

"You're needed at the main office, one of the others will take you there." The guard said as he shut the door."
----------------------

Dragon decided to speak up for once.

"Listen, can we argue over this bullocks later?" He snapped. "We've got other problems at the moment. Right now I say we focus on taking down Yujiro's section of the Collective, since Superman would be among our greater threats. We just need a good strategy to deal with him"

He looked around the room. "What say you lot?"

-------------------
Animal Man was taken into a Blade's hand and the batallion flew away to the nearest base. One there, a medical team took Animal Man to a lab where they restrained him to a surgical table.

A group of surgeons then walked in, one of them preparing a tray of tools.

"Now... Let's see what we can do with this one..." Said the head surgeon

Drake glared at the Russian. "Fine. I'm with Dragon."

"so your saying we have to fight superman? Before we build up a resistance force of liberated territories? I am very used to being in a small team but don't you think we're a bit outmatched?"

Despite his lack of a face, Question seemed confident. He reached into his pocket and produced a small glowing green rock in what appeared to be a ziplock bag.

"Even men of steel have weaknesses." He began. "Beyond substances such as kryptonite, Superman can also be harmed by energy of various types, including magic." He turned his expression to Dragon who sat with his arms crossed. "... And I'm sure 'Qi' based attacks would be just as sufficient."

"so do we have any intel on his location? floor plans? how many guards they have? anything useful for making a plan?"

"also, what sort of plan do we have once we get superman weakened? tie him up, just kill him and be done with it or what?"

"oh, and i'm still waiting on that pizza"

Question seemed silent for a good while.

"I've always been afraid of something like this happening-Superman turning on humanity, whether it was intentional or not..." he paused a moment as if to gather himself. "But I would be lying if I said I wouldn't regret killing him."

"They might have forced Superman to joining them, or maybe he's under some sort 'compulsion', I've heard of similar spells. For now I say we should try to contain him and wait." Dragon said.

Question seemed unimpressed.

"Yes, but you do realize that if you're wrong, we'd have a very powerful Kryptonion itching to tear apart the floor from beneath us right?"

Despite his face being hidden by his cap, Dragon seemed to frown. "But, didn't you just say you'd regret having to kill Superman?"

"But that doesn't mean I wouldn't do what I have to. Now's not the time for moral compasses!" Question shot back. "Our priority is to get rid of this threat while it's still young, before it can really do any damage!"

"And who's to say it hasn't, huh?" Dragon snapped back. "I never knew the guy personally, but even I know that he would never willingly help 'the badguys', so the speak. I know we have to deal with him, but we should also try to get him back with us while we can't"

"We don't have time for that! At this moment, Superman is just as dangerous as the rest of the Collective as long as he's active! We don't have time to try to 'convert him' just because you're af-"

"Goddamnit, Question we gotta try! We can't expect to be the 'side of good' if we're willing to stoop to our enemy's level!"

"The side of good? Try the side of survival, Dragon. If we can figure out why he has joined the enemy, then we can adequately make plans on Superman. Is facing him our only option right now? If we strike were the Collective is weakest, if we keep hitting their soft spots while we gather some sort of intel on him, maybe, just maybe, we can both save him, if possible, and not fucking die." Drake looked around him, and then to the Russian. "You currently have access to the largest intelligence network still intact. Can you get that intel while we, say, strike at the Collective were they least expect it. . . excluding where ever Superman is laying his head."

"I understand the importance of taking out, or saving, Superman. It should be a prime objective. But we still don't know how we are going to work as a team. My own behavior should indicate that it will be piss poor. We need a milk run."

"I agree with the ginger. we can't just dive in to a major battle. we do need to learn to work as a team. learn each others strengths and weaknesses. and build trust."

Zaitsev looked satisfied that the conversation was getting more productive.

"Impressive that you managed to get your hands on kryptonite Question. No doubt taken from the JLA Watchtower, or possibly STAR Labs. Speaking of which, The Order has spent the last several days attempting to find Lex Lutor, with no result. He is a very smart man, probably as smart as me. It is unlikely that we will find him until he wants to be found."

Zaitsev looked at something off-screen and the corners of his mouth turned upwards.

"It seems Superman has been pushing himself harder than anyone expected. He has exited the atmosphere to absorb solar radiation, at least for now. He will likely be back within 72 hours. But as for use of our intelligence network, I have information prepared already."

I suppose you had it ready to use as a bargaining tool The Question deduced.

"Correct. An inside source has revealed the main designer and producer of mechanical forces."

The others leaned forward to look as the image on the screen changed to show a dossier on the peron in question.

"His name is Ivo Robotnik, or Dr. Eggman. Even before the Collective, he was capable of an enormous output of robotic soldiers. He was the one who repaired Galvatron by the order of The Collector, and Dr.Eggman's robotic forces led by Galvatron in Asia are the same that are currently at war with Japan, and my own robotic military. The reason Russia has withstood so well is because of our far more technologically superior soldiers, but the collective keeps him well supplied, so the attacks won't stop. He is currently somewhere in Indonesia."

"That's a lot of high profile intel." Drake said with a slightly suspicious tone.

"The Order has been watching his operation since before the Collective's invasion. To put it in simple terms, we got lucky."

Viking Incognito:

"C'mon...there's gotta be some kind of animal around here...something."

Animal Man puts all he can into reaching out to whatever animal there is nearby to try and bust out.

John had been sitting passively as the various discussions had been raging, his chin perched on two fingers. He reached out briefly with his mind, prying two lumps of concrete from the floor around the size of a ping-pong ball. He condensed them in the blink of an eye, the dull grey stone turning clear as diamond, the unchangeable materials forming a soot black core. The two orbs began to orbit him.

He Stood, the orbs landing on each palm and took a step towards question.

"May I.... may I have a look at the kryptonite, I may be able to learn it, add it to my repertoire, I could make more if it is something I can learn the composition of." He said bowing slightly, extending a hand, the orb flattening into a glass bowl.

"And as of killing him, no, someone like him.... I doubt he is doing this wilfully, he can be either questioned or saved depending on what his situation is, where actually is he? he should be our first objective."

"Keep in mind, guys, that we are not bullet proof. Or laser proof. Or faster-than-a-speeding-bullet proof. If we try to go in now, without a sound plan, and definitely without some practice working with each other, we are going to die." Drake said. "But. . .the decision is ultimately up to the Question. You're more knowledgeable than any of us at this point, and you had the hopefully good sense to gather us here."

Question, after seeming to think for a moment before handing the bag to John.

"Just be careful; getting more of this isn't easy." He said before turning to the rest of the group.

"I've noticed a pattern: The Collective tends to go right for the heart of the nations they attack; Washington D.C., London, Hong Kong, they attack the head of command and then take it for themselves. While this is much faster and more direct, it also gives them more to do. Having to consolidate their power and establish their power over the rest of the country. This will allow us a way in by simply going to the parts of the country they have yet to occupy and sneak in from there.

We might be able to gather support along the way. We'll start with the United States. Any move we make towards Yujiro will gain Superman's attention. But, I want to start in Gotham. While Batman might no longer be there, someone who can get into contact with him might."
----------------

As the doctors prepared to do their work, a lab rat that had gotten loose managed to find its way into the lab. A lab attendent screamed as she saw it and the lot of them began to chase it about, hoping to chase it out or catch it before it contaminated the room

*scoffs and does air quotes* "'someone who can get into contact with him' by any chance are we going to get a name? being in the loop would be a lot of help here."

"Alrighty now, let's not argue for the sake of arguing. Right now, Dragon and the Question are the only people in this group I remotely trust, or like. I don't trust our friend over here." Drake said, pointing to the Russian. "But, I'm willing to put aside that distrust for the time being. I think we're all scared right now, even if we don't want to show it. We're all on edge. But we can NOT distrust the Question at moment. We'll be filled in. Don't worry about that." Drake looked over at the faceless man and nodded. "I have not helped the situation with my insults but that is NOT how we need to act if we are going to survive to save the world. Then we can all kill each other as heroes."

"What? you don't trust me?" He said, smiling wryly as he sat back down with the kryptonite clutched close to him.

He sat, eyes closed, the glass orb enclosing the kryptonite in it's contaminate-free shell ready to be examined. He probed it for some time, managing to gleam what he could, it was strange, the individual atoms working together like clockwork, an ever-moving lump of radiation emitting rock. So very odd.

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