Hidden 8 days ago 5 days ago Post by Mao Mao
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Mao Mao Sheriff of Pure Hearts (They/Them)

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Gateway City, Rhode Island
Present Day

1.00 // New Year, Same Dilemma
π——π—œπ—”π—‘π—” 𝗣π—₯π—œπ—‘π—–π—˜

Diana Prince examined her former armor during the New Years' Eve celebrations across the city. It was one, if not the, roughest years in recent memory. She saw the near-collapse of her entire reputation due to allegations of working beside a terrorist. Stryfe's last defying act was for him to kill public trust in the world's first superhero. Admittedly, it was a cunning plan. Only if there was something to work on that. FBI, CIA, and even Interpol raided everything tied to Stryfe and his terrorist organization. They also searched Diane's home and business for any signs. And in addition, Diana was interrogated for months by the Senate committee for the second time. She knew that they were hoping that the claim for an insane terrorist was right. Instead, she was proven innocent; but, it didn't mean the end of her trouble.

Diana might not have worked with Stryfe, but she was responsible for so much devastation in New York City. Including the partial destruction of the iconic Empire State Building. As a result, the courts ordered her to pay 80 billion USD for the damages and compensation towards the victims' loved ones and survivors. And then demanded an official public announcement of Wonder Woman's retirement. Along with weekly check-ins with SHIELD until deemed safe. If she refused to accept their offer, then she was going to spend life in prison without parole. There was a moment of hesitation. Was she able to live a normal life after this mess? Will the world be safer if she retired or worse off? Maybe not. She had been spending a hundred years fighting humanity's wars. It was the only chance to live an honest life. Diana accepted the court's offer.

The armor at the party was a replica, even if it looked convincing. Diana knew since it was the real one was at her home. But there was a sense of nostalgia. That armor kept her safe for a hundred years and was a significant part of her. It still felt weird to not wear it out in public. Suddenly, a familiar voice greeted her.

"Of course, you are here."

"Nice to see you too." Diana turned to shake the hand of Veronica Cale, CEO of Empire Enterprises. Empire was an American diversified multinational mass media that saw growth in the decade. This year alone saw it expanding into the European market. It was somewhat surprising to see her in the states than celebrating in Spain. "I thought that you'd be with your board in Europe?"

"Grew tired of them." Cale casually replied. "Besides, my daughter wanted to spend the New Year with her friends in the states. There's only so much you can do in Ibiza. Though I do miss the warmth..."

Cale stood beside Diana and took a look at the armor. "It's not surprising to see you here, admiring the past."

Diana's smile instantly disappeared and started getting defensive. "I'm only here to make sure it's ready for the charity auction tonight."

"Sure, you're." Cale grinned. She knew the truth and went in for the attack. "I get it. A person of your status being forced into retirement after that mess in New York."

"Actually, it's been relatively easy."

"Really now? You are the strongest woman in the world, playing pretend with the billionaires. All because you were doing what heroes do bestβ€”bringing death and destruction wherever they go."

Diana sharply turned towards Cale and frustratingly called out her bullshit. "Don't you get tired of playing these games?"

"You can't, Diana, or else you'd be eaten alive." Cale laughed. "It's one of the first lessons that I ever learned being an elite. You should've known that."

"Tell me why you are really here or leave."

Cale wasn't able to contain her smile after witnessing Wonder Woman getting frustrated so easily. "It's been a year since Stryfe and his terrorist front attacked America. Since the partial collapse of the Empire State Building. I was wondering if you want to be interviewed by WHIH World News. We have an interviewee on standby. Just say the word, and we can start next Monday."

"Why the hell would I want to be interviewed by one of your companies? I am not stupid enough to talk into a trap." Diana immediately rejected the offer.

"I might hate your guts. But, I am also not stupid to jeopardize my business for a smear campaign." Cale pointed out while pulling out her phone. "The interview will be honest and brutal but factual and fair. No conspiracies. No bullshit. Everything will be made clear. What do you have to say?"

Diana paused for a moment to reconsider the offer. Was she ready to talk about the whole ordeal? It may have been a year, but it was still a painful memory. Her therapist might have the answer. And with that mind, Diana looked away from her and sighed. "Look, I-I am not sure about it. I don't know if everybody is ready to hear my side of the story. Hell, I don't even know. I'd assume that you carry your business card with you. Could I have it to call you with an answer?"

"Of course." Cale put away her phone, pulled out the card, and handed it to Diana. It was an animation of the Empire Enterprises logo transforming into the WHIH World News logo. Below it was the name and phone number of Cale. Suddenly, the noise from the crowd counting down caught both of their attentions. Cale made her way back to the party but stopped for a moment to bid farewell. "Have a happy New Year, Diana."

Diana acknowledged it for a moment and then looked at the card again as it replayed the animation. She didn't notice that Etta Candy had entered the room. "What did she want?"

"An interview."

Candy laughed at the answer but saw her friend's curiosity. "Are you actually going to do it? You know that she's baiting you into a trap, right?"


"Diana-" Candy tried to talk to her, but the crowd started to get louder in their countdown. "Look, we can talk about this later with everyone else. For now, let's just celebrate."

The auction began after the Times Square Ball dropped, making the new decade. Several rare paintings of Wonder Woman and additional replicas were brought from a few hundred thousand dollars. The full armor set sold for two million dollars to a businessman from Silicon Valley. Tonight's charity event raised about five million dollars. Every dollar will be going to various charities and programs across the world. But even with the auction over, people still stayed a few extra hours to celebrate and chat with Diana.

Only when most of the guests left that Candy decided to bring up the interview. She walked over towards Diana, who was cleaning up from the party. "I want to talk about earlier and how accepting it is a bad idea."

"What's a bad idea?" Alana Dominguez asked as she approached both of them.

"Being interviewed by WHIH, which I haven't accepted yet."

Peter Garibaldi looked up from his at the mention of the news channel. "Why not?"

Diana looked away and explained her reason. "I just don't know if everyone is ready. If I am ready to talk about New York City."

"It could be a necessary step for you to move on with your life." Rachel Keast joined in the discussion.

Candy looked at everyone in disbelief. "Are you guys forgetting that WHIH is owned by Empire Enterprises, which is run by Veronica Cale. The woman with a dangerous grudge for Diana."

Garibaldi started taking down some notes on his phone. "It just means that we have to prepare her for any unfortunates."

"You can't be serious."

"I am."

"Both of you stop." Diana intervened before things got ugly. "I didn't give her an answer. And I have until next Monday to make my mind up."

Keast put her hand on Diana's shoulder. "Whatever happens, we'll stand by your side. And if you need to talk to us, we're all ears."

"Of course, we will."


"Even if I disagree, I will support whatever you decide."

"Thanks, guys." Diana smiled at the support from her friends. The same ones that stood beside her after New York. It wasn't easy at first. Despite having two sons to care, Garibaldi worked endlessly to maintain Diana's vision for the World Veterans Federation as the public support declined. Keast defended her during the investigations and built a case for her innocence. Dominguez took temporary control of the organization while Diana was dealing with the aftermath. And Candy risked her safety to defend her from the countless threats.

For those things alone, Diana was forever grateful for their support.

Sleep wasn't a requirement for someone that was made out of clay by the Gods. But she did enjoy it because it was one of the few times where her mind was quiet. For the most part. Ever since Stryfe, her dreams were a constant reminder of the destruction she carried out on that day.

However, this dream was completely different.

β€œWonder Woman was part of the Metahuman Supremacy Front. All this was a show, it was her plan in the first place.”

Everyone was caught off guard by the news, especially Diana. And the press ate it up without care. Journalists and news reporters were yelling out questions at her. She had to put an end to this before it was too late. "I was never part of his group! He's lying!"

There was a moment of silence to consider the possibility. Then, a journalist walked towards Diana with a look of hatred. He pointed at the partially collapsed Empire State Building. "Then, explain this. I saw both of you flying inside before the upper levels collapsed. Why should we trust you?"

"Not to mention that there are reports that you stormed out of the hearings."

"And with your questionable actions in Transia, is it too much not to take your word. Especially when your sword's covered in blood."

"No!" Diana cried out. "All of you are falling for his lies."

Stryfe watched in glee while the media tore her apart. Now, it was time to strike the final bow. He knew what he was about to say next was going to get him killed. But it was for a greater good. With that in mind, he turned towards Diana and interjected. β€œColonel Trevor would be so ashamed of you. I doubt he could even look you in the eyes after the atrocities you’ve committed today.”

Diana went numb at the mention of her beloved's name coming out of the monster's mouth. Anger filled her mind. She wasn't able to think clearly at the moment and lunged at him. "Don't ever mention his fucking name you bastard!"

By the time she tossed him towards the fountain, she had realized that everyone's expressions were the same: fear. They were afraid of her. Even her old best friend, Steve, looked disturbed at her response. That was when she realized that Stryfe had won. He got what he wanted, and everyone would see superheroes the same way he did: abominations. It was already too late for Diana to back away. Then, she saw the gun on Steve's sidearm and knew what to do.

Sacrifice herself for a better tomorrow.

Captain America, dealing with two monsters at once, would be celebrated across the country. His return will mark a new chapter for the world. He would know what to protect the innocent. And he will make sure to inspire the new generation of heroes. He was going to be better than she ever was. So with that in mind, Diana walked towards Stryfe with the intent to kill. He closed his eyes and began to lift his arms wide open. Both of them were at peace. But that didn't happen.

Instead, Diana was knocked to the ground and immediately knew who did it. Steve. Her plan was about to fall apart. And there was nothing she could to stop it. Rogers pulled out the gun from his sidearm and pointed it squarely at Stryfe. Before he fired the shot, however, time froze in place. She was able to get up from the ground and approached him. There were so many feelings during that moment: angry, sadness, regret. Then suddenly, a familiar voice appeared behind her.

"So he was the one that dealt the killing blow. Incredible."

Diana turned towards the fountain and saw that Stryfe vanished. The next thing she knew was that he was standing beside her. "Our plan went so unexpectedly well."

"Our? No, it was your fault."

"You're not lying. But, you were planning on killing me after all. And that caused your friend to intervened."

Diana started to get defensive and glanced at Captain America. "So he could've become the hero that I once was."

Stryfe walked over towards the man and examined him at the moment. Emotionless for a man intended to kill another man. "How did that wonderful plan work out? Instead of one, two beloved heroes died on this day... God works in mysterious ways."

"He wasn't supposed to kill him! I was! I wanted to murder you for what you did!"

"And now, you will never get your chance ever again." Stryfe couldn't help but laugh at Wonder Woman's failure. It took a moment for him to calm down so he could resume talking. "But thank you again for the assist. You should know that it warms my heart, seeing both Wonder Woman and Captain America dead."

Diana was about to respond when a bell rang loud enough that everything shook. She was confused at what it meant. However, Stryfe clapped his hands together and chirped. "It's time!"


"Get back to your place before the scene resumes." Stryfe gestured with his hand towards her spot on the ground. Then, he got back to the fountain, closed his eyes, and stretched his arms wide. "See you soon, Diana."

Before she could have reacted, Diana found herself on the ground and staring at Rogers. There was nothing she could have done at the moment. And history forever changed because of himβ€”for better and worse. The scene slowly resumed as Captain America pointed the gun between Stryfe's eyes and-

~ BANG ~

Hidden 6 days ago 10 hrs ago Post by Mao Mao
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Mao Mao Sheriff of Pure Hearts (They/Them)

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Gateway City, Rhode Island
Present Day

1.01 // Routine
π——π—œπ—”π—‘π—” 𝗣π—₯π—œπ—‘π—–π—˜

Diana immediately awoke to the sound of her alarm going off instead of the gunshot. Her breathing was out of control for the nightmare. It was the first time in a while that she thought of Stryfe. The monster that changed her entire life. She got out of bed and rushed straight to the bathroom sink. After a few splashes of water to her face, she calmed down a little. But reliving that horrible event again was unpleasant. With a quick shower and a change of outfit, she was feeling more better. The phone went off as a reminder to take her antidepressant. New York City worsened her PSTD that she once controlled. Her doctor and therapist recommended fifty milligrams of Zoloft along with weekly therapy visits. So far, it helped a little.

After taking it, Diana gathered her things for the day in the office and left her home. World Veterans Federation established a national headquarters in Gateway City shortly after its foundation in London. It was designed as a mixture of Greek and American architecture to make it not stand out of place. And it also reflected Wonder Woman's place of origin: Greece. However, it saw its fair share of protests after Stryfe's death and a hotbed of false threats. Recent months saw things calming down and returning to some form of normality. Diana drove to the office and entered inside, where Candy and Dominguez were waiting for her in the lobby.

"Good morning, Diana." Dominguez greeted her boss.

"Morning." Diana shook her and Candy's hands. "I assume it's going to be another busy day."

"Yeah. You got a conference call with the team in London about Transia. And the team in Egypt regarding the crisis in the Middle East." Dominguez listed off the schedule for the day as the three of them got inside the elevator. "Pete wants to talk to you about the possible interview with WHIH."

"Also, Clint is coming up for the weekly checkup." Candy added.

"Well, let's get started then. Tell the team that I'm on my way."

Diana made her way to the meeting room with Dominguez, who was explaining the team's recent developments. It wasn't good news. In the aftermath of Wonder Woman's presence, Yuri Petrovich's resistance spread across the East European country. The country's government banned all foreign presence with the exception of SHIELD to gather any necessary evidence and cleanup. Several charities and humanities organizations, including the World Veterans Federation, recently applied for entry into the country. Today was when they find out if it was approved or declined. Upon entering the room, the team was set up to showcase their progress to their boss via hologram.

"Good morning!" The team greeted Diana.

"Any progress?" Diana asked the team's leader, William.

"We're still waiting for a response along with the Red Cross." William responded and then waved his hand to bring up the hologram map of the country. "As for the revolt in Transia, its getting worse as Petrovich's militia clashed with the local military near the capital. Several dozen were reported to be injured but that's from an unofficial report. Rural areas have been hit the hardest with both sides raiding villages to either set up camp, steal for them, or both."
Hidden 6 days ago 5 days ago Post by Mao Mao
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Mao Mao Sheriff of Pure Hearts (They/Them)

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