Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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Joel Beck
Location: Terrorizing an eastside gang in a mattress store
Tags: Open


Rain pattered the muddy ground. The cheers almost drowned out the pain. Joel lifted himself up out of the slurry and faced his opponent once more. He called himself Boneyard. Kinda hokey, but what did he know? The guy was pretty good, but a little too reliant on his infamous knockout blows. The problem was, Joel couldn't be knocked out.

They called him The Insomniac. He didn't care much for the name but he didn’t bother trying to fix it either. He came to these things for three reasons: keeping his ear to the ground, making money, and to make sure the suit never became a crutch.

Joel wore a pair of muddy gym shorts and equally dirty sneakers. They were surrounded by a hooping and hollering crowd of morally questionable individuals. He'd noticed at least two drug trades during this fight alone.

He ducked to dodge another hard swing from Boneyard. Joel took the opportunity to launch himself at the larger man, taking them both down to the ground. Joel recovered first and immediately began wailing on him. His knuckle wraps were stained with blood and dirt. Boneyard took the punishment for a few seconds before he threw Joel off.

The rules of the fights were simple: there were none. Pin your opponent for a full five seconds to win. There were no rounds, no breaks, no off limits.

Boneyard rounded on him, and Joel stayed down. He waited until the man was bending down to grab him to fly up and deliver a vicious uppercut to the jaw. Boneyard stumbled back, then fell over. He was out cold, face down in the mud. Joel had the decency to turn him over before waiting his five seconds. The prize money would pay rent and groceries for the next few weeks.

"What do you think, Reap? Is my brain too much mush to keep doing this? Should I quit while I'm ahead?"

"You still have plenty of time left to do some good in this world, if that's what you're asking."

"It wasn't, but thanks for the reassurance." Joel used his teeth to undo his knuckle wraps. Thunder rumbled outside, vibrating the thin metal walls of the old processing plant. "I never asked. What's it like? You know, on the other side?"

The Grimm Reaper seemed to ponder the question for a moment. "Peaceful."

Joel nodded solemnly. "That sounds nice."

"Hey Beck, if you're done talking to yourself, there's a guy here to see ya'." A greasy headed man had poked his head in the room to scrutinize the man sitting alone.

"Yeah yeah, gimme a minute," Joel stood as the man retreated. He glanced back at his friend. "You about to head out?"

The Reaper nodded. "Over a thousand souls have disembarked in just the last ten minutes. Someone needs to guide them."

Joel nodded understandingly and turned to leave.

The rundown plant was eery enough without the sleaze of Chicago's underworld lurking around. Joel suspected at least a few of them knew about his other job; his secret identity was notoriously poorly kept. His address was listed in the phone book. It was rarely a problem for him, though. Most of these goons weren't dumb enough to turn up on his own terf. If they knew Wraith, they knew his reputation. He never slept and he had no problem with putting any of them on a T-shirt.

"Heard you were one of those tights wearing types. What the hell you doin' here?" The man was missing a few teeth and had a nasty scar across his face.

"Tights don't pay bills."

"Yeah, whatever. Look, the eastside boys have been givin' us trouble. Figured it'd be a real shame if some freak showed up and clapped them all."

"I'm listening."

"Yeah." The man slipped him a piece of paper with an address on it. "Just don't come after my boys again, or I'll carve your goddamn face off."

"You could try." Joel tucked the paper away and headed out. He had his intel, now it was time to do some real work.

The storm had let up a little by the time Wraith arrived at the address. It was a mattress store; an interesting choice for a front, but the warehouse attached left plenty of room to move goods through.

Surprise entrances weren't Wraith's forte. He didn't care if they saw him coming. By the time they emptied a whole magazine on him with no results, they were too scared senseless to put up any kind of a real fight. Wraith didn't ruthlessly murder them all, which would be much to his informant's dismay. No, he only intentionally killed the really bad ones. These guys were just underlings; they still had a chance to turn their shit around. But, if they died from a brain hemorrhage because they made themselves an easy target, he wasn't going to sweat it.

He tore through the warehouse, leaving carnage in his wake. Stray teeth, broken bones, a limp body here or there. He could feel each and every round that pierced his skin, but knowing it wouldn't kill him took the sting away. Once he took the suit off again, it would be like it never happened.

Wraith scanned the room, looking over the damage for any sign of someone with some fight left. Maybe he did enjoy this a little too much. With the thugs scattered to the winds or down for the count, Wraith began going through the products to see what he was dealing with here.

The first suspicious crate he pried open was full of…what was this, medical equipment? Were the easties picking up on organ harvesting? That didn't fit their M.O.

Wraith frowned under his mask and turned to find a goon that was still conscious. A man laid on the floor with a bone protruding from his left leg. He wailed when Wraith grabbed him and drug him over.

"What is this shit?" He demanded. The man whimpered. Wraith shook him violently. "I don't have all night!"

"It's for a trade off! The boss made a deal with some new guys for it. They didn't say what it was for! I swear I don't know!"

Wraith grunted and released the sobbing man. "Do yourself a favor and research better careers in the hospital." He stalked away, leaving the destruction he'd wrought behind. There were some new players on the scene, huh? These low level thugs wouldn't know anything about them. The higher ups were smart enough to compartmentalize that info. It was time to track down their boss.
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by King Cosmos
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Kitsune


The first mugger never saw her coming.

None of them did really, despite that she was running towards them like a streak of white in the night, but it was only the first that she took by surprise with a flying knee between the shoulder blades. He slammed forward from the impact only to immediately bounce back from a second impact with the wall in front of him with a noise than might have been a crunch; he fell back and did nothing to catch himself as he fell to the floor.

The second did see her coming, briefly. He turned away from the young woman that the three of them were cornering in a dark alley, having just enough time to take in what was happening before her foot met the side of his knee and buckled the leg. As he dropped into a crouch, against his will, she caught him in the side of the head with an elbow that saw his eyes cloud over and consciousness leave him.

When she turned to the third, she had his undivided attention.

She’d ask why they thought it took three people to rob a single young woman but, well, the groan of pain from behind her kind of answered that for her. Kitsune spared a glance for the man behind her, who was slowly rising to his feet while clutching at his nose, before giving him a swift kick to the face that dropped him back down. Turning, she rushed the final assailant as he was reaching for something inside of his jacket, hand digging into an interior pocket of his jacket. A gun? A knife? She never found out, grabbing his wrist as the hand began to emerge and burning it.

The mugger let out a screech of pain as the heat began to do its work. It rolled off of her like a furnace, searing the exposed skin of his face and prickling at his body even beneath the layers of clothing he wore. The pain in his wrist would have been worse however, the direct contact with her own scorching skin so much more intense than the rest. He gave up on whatever he had been trying to pull from his jacket, letting it fall back into his pocket as he instead put all of his effort into escape. She held him for only a second before letting go, not wanting to do any permanent damage, and as he stumbled back from the sudden release she landed a high kick to his temple that put him on the ground with his friends.

For a few moments in the aftermath, the only sound was that of her own heavy breathing as the toll of what she had just done hit her. Her breath was uncomfortably warm and humid within the confines of her store bought mask, the same mask that meant she had to turn her entire head to scan the alleyway for more attackers, given the way it blocked her peripheral vision. No more muggers, but she was surprised to see that the woman, the would-be victim, was still there and looking at her with something like awe and fear on her face; most of the time people ran as soon as they had an opening, it was only a few who stuck around to talk to her afterwards. She wished they wouldn’t, but it made things easier in this case.

She pointed at the men on the ground and the woman was startled out of her daze once she realised the heroes attention was now on her. “Call the police and then go home. Avoid shortcuts from now on.”

The woman hastily nodded and was already bringing out her phone as Kitsune turned to leave. She’d wait a while out of sight, just long enough to make sure they really left once the call ended and to catch her breath; she’d move on after that, go back to patrolling around for a few more hours before calling it a night so she would be ready for classes. It was all the time she could afford to spare, though it didn’t feel like enough. It never felt like enough. Not enough time spent, not enough people saved, not enough of a difference made.

She let out a sigh.

Not enough. But it was all she could do.
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by ZephyrHope
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Jack tailor


Tick Tock, tick tock, tick tock. The sound echoed throughout the office, the smell of cigarettes and cheap alcohol filled the air. Jack Tailor sat there in his worn and torn fifteen-dollar office chair staring at the clock. He took sips of the bourbon he got as a gift from the convenience store owners that he had helped the day before. They were short-staffed and were a nice couple that he couldn’t say no to. However, instead of paying him, they gave him the drink he was sipping on and the cigarettes he was smoking.

He grimaced every time he took a swig and puffed a smoke of the toxic substance. “I hate the taste,” he said aloud, leaning back in his chair. The sharp sound of metal screeching from the bottom of his chair broke the silence. “Damn it I just fixed you the other day” with a heavy sigh, he got up and made his way to the makeshift bed in the back office. He looked at his calendar, noting the time left before having to pay his bills. Three days, he thought to himself. He needed a job now that paid him a substantial amount of cash.

Ding! The sound of the bell on his door moving made his ears perk. Hurriedly, he went to meet his new guest with a smile on his face. “Hello! Welcome to the Mystery Mystic’s offices, the finest Private Investigator in the city.”

“Hi Jack,” said an elder woman as she struggled to walk into the room and to the chair.

“Mrs.Jones? What brings you here?” hurriedly, he grabbed a chair for the older woman he often spoke to while walking the street.

“Thank you dear” she said as she sat down. Jack noted the look of dark circles under her eyes and the new set of wrinkles that pressed against her eyes. Her eye’s had a hint of red as if she had been crying before coming here.

“I have a job for you.” Her voice was hoarse and rough. She reached into her pocket, pulling out a picture of a young girl around fifteen years of age. “You remember my granddaughter? You used to play with her when she was younger?”

“Of course, she was a lovely young girl,” he said, taking the picture. His heart weighed heavily at the thought that crossed his mind knowing what she was here for.

“It has been a whole day since she has been home and she missed school.” Coughing loudly, her hand clasped on her throat.

Quickly Jack turned to his fridge, opening it to reveal the day old noodles and a single bottle of water. Damn it he thought before opening it and handing it over to her. He watched as she drank. Resting a hand on her back slowly moving it waiting for her to continue before saying anything.
“I talked to the police already and said they would look into it.” her voice trailed off as tears started to form in the corner of her eyes. “I can’t wait for them to find her passing on the street.” letting loose a torrent of tears her voice picked up as she stared at jack. “Please I don’t have much but I’ll pay anything if you can get my daughter back. After her parents died… I can’t… imagine what has happened to her.”

Jack rested a hand on hers before putting on a smile. “Mrs. Jones, everything is going to be okay. I'll find her. You have my word.”

She leaned forward, covering her face with her hands, trying to wipe away the tears while muttering the words “Thank you… I will pay you anything I can”.

“Do you have anything of hers?” he asked before she reached into her pocket, pulling out a necklace.”

“I got this for her birthday,” she said reluctantly, putting it in his hands. With that, he stood up grabbing his black and gray long coat and throwing it over his shoulders. Then, twirling his fedora in his hands before placing it onto his long dark hair, he turned to her. “Go home and rest easy that the best PI in all of Chicago is on the case.” As he opened up the door he looked back with a wink and said, “Don’t worry about payment the smile on your face when you're reunited with your granddaughter will be enough”.

Escorting her out, he got to work immediately. Turning to his desk, he took out his dark black gloves. A white magic circle on the back of the gloves with a gem started to glow as he put it on. Chanting in a deep voice “Anima rei indagare manus” his eyes glowed a bright white before returning to their normal blue color. Images flocked into his mind of a building. A mattress store on the eastside. A front of a gang by the looks of the men that wandered inside. The images got clearer as they rested on a girl tied up locked in a closet.

“Found you,” he said. His eyes narrowed searching his desk, he pulled out a dagger placing it on his waist alongside a pistol marked with arcane symbols. He walked outside the pouring rain, matching the melancholy feeling that weighed on his heart. ‘I need to get there quickly’.

He didn’t have time to take a taxi or the bus. With a loud sigh, he let pass from his lips. He pulled a golden coin out of his pocket, twirling it between his fingers. This was his last drachma. Tossing the ancient Greek currency in the middle of the street he chanted “sinite me iter tutum ad destinatum meum per Stygem fluvium” the words echoed as the world turned to black his mind-melded into the darkness before appearing on top of a building in a shadow across from where his destination.

That trip had cost him a great deal. Finding drachma was hard enough as it was in America and buying them cost a fortune. Looking across the way he stared down at the front making note of the men that stood on the outside and inside hearing screams and yells of pain. His mind focused on the sounds of someone else being there, causing havoc. Quickly he descended down the building fire escape. Stealthy, he entered the building, trying to gain a sightline on who or what was causing havoc.

There he saw a fellow detective he worked with before. Damn it, why is he here? He thought before walking out. "Hey Joel, it’s been a while.”
Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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Joel Beck
Location: Doing the absolute least to prove his sanity in a mattress store
Tags: Jack


Wraith had found a discarded rag among the boxes and crates inside the warehouse. He was using it to wipe the blood off his suit when an all too familiar voice greeted him. Wraith turned to face the new arrival, his mask expressionless.

"Jack." He said curtly. "I thought you said you never wanted to see me again after last time." He tossed the soaked rag on the ground and turned away to find a new victim to shake down. His eyes landed on the silvery, floating form of one of his recently dispatched victims. It seemed this particular goon had hit his head a little too hard on his fall. Or, at least, that's what the pool of blood his face was laying in suggested.

"Oh fuck," The man said in a panicked voice, "Am I dead? You fucking killed me?!"

"You're a low level thug working for a crime lord, you weren't exactly shelf stable to begin with."

"I'll kill your ass!" The ghost flew at him, then through him. Wraith didn't seem impressed.

"No. But you are going to tell me what you know about your boss."

"Go to hell!"

"Interesting choice of words." Wraith pulled what looked like an old burner phone out of his pocket and went to the speed dial list. There was only one number. The line was picked up immediately. "Hey Reap. I got one for you. Said something about wanting to go to hell? Yeah he's still here."

"The reaper has a cell phone? Who the hell is his provider?"

In mere seconds, a void opened beside Wraith and a ghastly form stepped through. The ghost goon went paler and scrambled back before being frozen in place by the Reaper's hold.

"OHSHITOHFUCKOKAYOKAYOKAY! I'LL TELL YOU WHATEVER YOU WANT, JUST GET THIS THING AWAY FROM ME!"

The reaper turned his black, empty hood towards Wraith, who shrugged. He released the spirit and vanished once more. "Alright," Wraith crossed his arms, "Time to start talking."

"She's in a supply closet downstairs! We didn't touch her, I swear!"

"She?"

Meanwhile, to an outside viewer, Wraith had been talking to empty air the entire time. Was any of this even happening? Honestly, he'd stopped questioning it a long time ago.
Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Blazion
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Location: Corwith Yard


”Good evening, citizens!”

High above the ground of Corwith Yard a spotlight came to life on the underside of a steel black drone, the blinding light washing out the emblem emblazoned along the undercarriage with it. As the man focused directly in the light staggered, two more drones’ spotlights came online. These two swung in a pattern across the yard, simultaneously drowning out and casting deep shadows as they ran the length of the meeting space. It was a rather wide open space for a railyard, set to the side of a small paved service path for vehicles. There were two already parked there, and as the lights swivelled across the gathering of half a dozen men one broke and ran towards them.

“Those fucking freaks are here, get the fuck in-” His words cut off as the car was thrown in the air, beneath it a giant clawed hand made of shadow surging up. The metal flipped through the air repeatedly before landing, upside down, on the other - crushing them together. Not that the thug could see it, considering the giant shadow claw had just swatted him like a bug backwards before disappearing into the shadows once more. The man hit the dirt and didn’t get back up.

“Now now, you’re not going to want to miss tonight’s special report! That’s right, it’s A Spotlight On Crime, with your host: Grim!”

Shadows coalesced into a swirling puddle atop one of the cargo containers that caged the area in, and the speaker on the main drone echoed with a showy drumroll. The owner of the booming voice rose from this puddle, the top of a black hood, then the fiercely glowing red eyes and mouth of a metal mask. The long black coat swirled around his legs as he stepped forth, raising his hands as though to hold off applause.

A shot rang out. Then another. A third went wide as the two rotating spotlights swivelled to cover the gang of thugs, blinding them as they tried to end the threat quickly. The puddle of shadow however had leapt up with inhuman speed, crossing in front of Grim. The bullets seemed to just disappear into the darkness of it - only for one of the men to scream as the shadows beneath his feet spit out a bullet into the bottom of his foot, - another man’s shadow barely missing him.

“Stop, stop-!”

The spotlights suddenly cut off, and like a guillotine a solid block of shadow swept forth from underneath one of the cargo containers, taking out the five standing men at the ankles and contorting over the already downed man. The weapons they dropped disappeared into their own shadows, vanishing as if they were never there.

“Ooo, another hard hitting interview!” The spotlights came back on as the shadowy portal in front of Grim dropped. He stepped forward onto empty air, and immediately a shadow snapped forward from the cargo container to cross in front of him in a solidified step. Then another, and another, the staircase disappearing behind him as he strolled to the ground.

“Now gentlemen, let’s show some restraint! It’s not polite to use range when your poor, defenseless opponent has none. Come now, pick yourselves up and let’s get the exclusive coverage on this incident!”

The first man never got back up, but it made little difference as one by one four others fell. Tripped, punched, clawed, an overall victim to their own inescapable shadow. It was only as the last man once more tried to flee that Grim gave pause, going into a sweeping bow in his direction.

“Thank you everyone for joining me tonight. This is your host Grim, signing off with a bang!”

… The fleeing man promptly was tripped by his own solidifying shadow, and slammed face first into the storage container he was going to duck behind. He passed out cold, head ringing.

In the quiet that followed the fight and performance, the dog hero Grim slowly straightened out. The spotlights continued to lazily circle the area, but he wasn’t worried. The dramatics of Grim were well known, and police were either on their way already or trusted him to handle it until they could become available.

Which left Grim, or more accurately Zoey, curious. She had not come here by chance, not really. When you end up in the streets enough, and become enough of a known element, you get certain information through various avenues. In this case, it was from a known pimp swearing up and down all his girls were there by choice and please don’t break his face - even if he wanted the heat trafficking would bring, the local ‘supplier’ had turned down all recent buyers.

Now that was something to be curious about.

And what a coincidence that she had meandered over to find the leftovers of what appeared to be trade off, judging from the banter of the men now swept out behind her. Grim had come by just in time to see them locking up a particular cargo container, marking a corner with a sharpie. It’d be a shame if a person just happened to take out the gang, then wandered over and unlocked the cargo container-

Even with the mask Grim choked as the air swept out, gagging briefly. He turned his head, allowing a moment for it to air before finally turning those glowing eyes forward.

”...Fuck.” The spotlights swept along the railyard at Grim’s back, providing shifting slices of light that lit up the interior. Even without them Grim’s eyes just swept along the sight, right to the darkest corners of this macabre scene. There were smears of blood along the walls -some with the distinctive shape of fingers-, shreds of clothing, and a whole discarded shirt crusted with rust dry blood. In the corner was the stench that had struck so harshly: a pile of human waste and throw up. Whoever was in here wasn’t even afforded a bucket.

As the hero stepped in, one hand on the edge of the cargo container’s sliding door, the rough texture scraping against his glove caught his attention. Turning to the locking mechanism that faced the inside, his heart plummeted. All around this side of the door, surrounding the lock that couldn’t be opened, were small marks. Scratches grooved into the metal. Dried blood sunk into the valleys. Nails that were ground down in desperate clawing measures until there was nothing left but to scrape layer after layer of skin from their fingertips.

Grim could almost hear the phantom screams.

A coughing dragged his attention away mercifully, and slowly the dog hero pivoted to look back at the men spread across the floor and rails. The bald man coughed again, body convulsing with the pain surging through his body. Grim’s uncaring mask looked down upon him.

The spotlights on the drones went out.

He thrust his hand forward, and surging forth with the motion a giant, clawed hand of pure shadow erupted from beneath the cargo container’s wheels. There was barely a hint of scream from the man before the claw crushed the choked air from his lungs, the scream of denting metal making a bigger impact as he was thrown into the container.

“Where are they?” The playful lilt in the deep voice had disappeared. Now it rumbled through the air with menace, low and dangerous. The bald man gasped, but still glared defiantly.

“Go fuck yourself.”

The shadow claw reached in once more, the clawed tips ripping a scream from the man’s throat as they grabbed onto his leg and dragged him back, struggling and flailing, to the entrance of the cargo container. Yet rather than drag him fully out it stopped just as the man’s ankle was over the threshold, hanging off the edge.

In the man’s confusion and disorientation, Grim grabbed the door of the cargo container and threw it shut with all his strength against the man’s ankle with a sickening crack.

As the scream pierced the air the container’s door was pulled open again, and in the darkness that now permeated Corwith Yard the red glow of Grim’s eyes and mouth burned. He waited a moment, allowing the screams to continue for a full ten, agonizingly slow seconds. Then he gripped the door again, moving to once more slam it closed.

“Wait, wait! Oh my god, we just - we just handed them off. We were just meant to transport them!”

“What are they being used for?” The man stared incomprehensibly, flaring heat deep in the hero’s belly. Grim lunged forward, shadows leaping to his fingers in a mimicry of the giant claw so that points dug into the bald man’s face, drawing blood as he was wrenched to look at the scratches in the metal. It was a useless gesture, the heavyset man unable to see in the deep darkness but his fingers scrabbling at the wrist at his face desperately. “I’ve seen rodents being transported with more concern about their well-being! You wouldn’t damage your merchandise this badly if they were going to become working girls. What. Are. They. Being. Used For?!

“They… They said as long as they were alive it didn’t matter what state they was in!” Grim finally released his grip, allowing the man a reprieve. He sobbed at the masked hero’s feet, but all that Grim did was pivot to step out of the container with one final question.

“Where was the drop off?”

“Here. It was here. They came in vans, took ‘em and left.”

The thoughtful hum reverberated in Grim’s mask like a predator’s growl. He raised a hand, and from the darkness of the container two hands of pure shadow reached out to grab onto the unwilling informant, yanking him deeper into the container. Across the scene of the railyard, men sunk into the shadows and were ejected out of them inside the container, some gasping and beginning to stir. Others remained still.

“I’m sure someone heard my performance, I’m not exactly subtle. The police will find you eventually as they check out the scene.”

“What - wait, don’t-”

“And if you get a little claustrophobic waiting, you can always try clawing your way out.”

The cargo container’s door shut with a clang of metal on metal, and the drones overhead changed path to resume patrol over the city once more.
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by King Cosmos
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Kitsune


It was turning out to be a busy night. Kitsune didn’t think anything of it at first, but after taking down her fifth group of thugs for the night, all seemingly stalking or cornering someone alone, she had to concede that it was a little too busy.

When she saw the sixth group trying to drag a homeless man into a van, well that just cemented her concerns in reality didn’t it?

Two men this time, tall, muscled and wearing dark clothing, plus a third in the driver seat. The man they carried between them was struggling mightily, thrashing around in their grip, but that didn’t seem to be slowing them down any as they hauled him off the ground and threw him bodily into the back of the non-descript vehicle. Kitsune took a deep breath and moved towards them, the fresh bruises she had accumulated over the night protesting as she ran. They heard her coming this time and by the time she reached them they had both turned to face her; still didn’t stop her from slamming an elbow into the face of the first man before he could react, but it did mean that when she got to the second he was aware enough to dodge her kick.

Behind her, she could hear the man she had elbowed recovering, the shock of her first hit wearing off, so she pressed a foot into the back of his knee and elbowed him again in the back of the head to finish him off. She did all of this without taking her eyes off of the man in front of her, which was a good thing since it allowed her to dodge the jab he sent her way even as his friend was slumping to the ground behind her. Any further violence was interrupted briefly as the homeless man bolted from the back of the van, running between them as he took the abductors distraction as a chance to escape.

The abductor followed the fleeing man with his eyes, looking like he was going to give chase, before he gave up on the idea and turned back to her instead, bringing his hands up in front of him and shifting a foot forward. He had a little bit of training then; nothing special by the looks of it but he’d at least been inside a boxing gym at some point in his life, which was more than most of the thugs she fought could say. Potentially a problem. Behind her she heard the door of the van open as the driver inside had finally taken notice and decided to join in. Better make this quick then.

A quick step forward was enough to bait out another jab, which she slipped under before rising inside his guard and slamming and elbow into the underside of his chin. They fell back, dazed, and she stepped forward again and feinted a roundhouse to his ribs; he fell for it, bringing his guard down to his side even as her knee twisted, lifting her foot up to hit him in the temple instead. He dropped like a puppet with his strings cut, as much from surprise as the way the hit scrambled his brains, and Kitsune turned to face the last abductor just as he was coming around the corner of the van. She was ready for them as they lunged at her, but she didn’t see the knife in the man’s hand until it glinted under the streetlights and that almost cost her. Grabbing his wrist she diverted the knife away from her, still feeling it graze her side and draw blood even as she spun in close to his body, used her free hand to reach up and grab his collar and dragged him over her shoulder to slam him to the ground.

A harsh twist of his wrist saw him release the knife as he yelped in pain, which she then kicked away so it skittered across the pavement and slid under the van. Hopping over his form, she knelt on his chest and pinned him down so she could ask him a few questions. “Busy night. Stopped a lot of these abductions. What’s going on?”

“Gah, get off me you bi-nnn!”

She twisted his arm another fraction of an inch, cutting him off. Yeah, it was probably hoping for too much to expect him to immediately tell her everything he knew. The problem was, she didn’t really know what to do if he didn’t; she’d never really interrogated anyone before, usually she didn’t say anything to the people she beat up. “Where were you going to take him?”

“None of your business!”

This was the part when the hero was supposed to start roughing up the suspect, she was pretty sure. Beating them up until they started talking, or in her case just turning up the heat until they talked or cooked, but she wasn’t willing to go that far. A couple broken bones and a concussion was about as much as she was willing to dish out in the name of justice and even then only during a fight; torturing someone didn’t sit right with her.

Which meant she wasn’t going to get anything out of this guy.

Her elbow cracked into a person’s skull for the third time in as many minutes, knocking the last abductor out as she let him go and stepped away from him. Letting out a sigh she pulled a burner phone out of her pocket and began to call the police, again, to pick these guys up. Exhaustion began to settle into her body as she walked away, the adrenaline starting to wear off and the night beginning to take its toll on her; time to call it then, time to head home. She pressed a hand to her side, the cut from the knife burning something fierce; a quick glance down showed that the side of her white top had started to turn red as well. It would need stitches, probably.

E.R. first, then home.
Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by ZephyrHope
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Jack Tailor

Tags: Joel

‘Why did I have to run into this crazy bastard of all the people’Ignoring Joel he carefully stepped over the bodies that lay in his path making his way to the closet where the girl should be. He reached out attempting to twist the knob only for it to not budge.Locked. He didn’t want to bust it down in case it hit the girl inside. Rubbing his hands together he put his palms facing the lock “[I]Sesamum te aperi[/]”. With a sharp clicking sound the door opened. He stepped inside, closing the door behind him. The girl cowered in the middle of the room, falling back as he approached. “Lux,” he said a bright orb of light appeared circling his head. “It’s okay now,” he said, taking the gag off her mouth. He smiled, wiping the tears around her eyes away.

Her expression lightened the fear in her mind subsided at the sight of the man she knew growing up “Mr. Tailor? How?”

Shushing her jack held his hand out over her eyes “securum somnos” he whispered her eyes closed before buckling over. “It’s better if you don’t see the carnage outside,” he said, picking her up into a princess carry he walked back the way he came in. His eyes stopped on the crates that had been opened earlier. Organs? Did they kidnap her for her organs?! His mind raced, knowing the excess amount of parts that filled the crates meant more victims he turned to Wraith. The idea of working with this man again sickened him. But the victims left unavenged and the families who will now be left with a loved one dead and gone disgusted him more. “we should work together to find the bastards who did this.”

Not waiting for his response he walked outside and set her down on a bench he spotted nearby. Taking a phone out of his pocket he quickly dialed a number before sitting down next to her. He looked up at the sky letting the rain drop onto his face.

"Hello?" hearing the voice of a woman on the other side jack sat forward to speak.

"Hello detective Kim it has been a while," he said in a solemn voice. "That favor you owe me well I'm cashing in".

"WHAT!? Right now? You know I am at work right now" he could hear her giving orders to the other officers on duty at the moment.

"I Have a twelve-year-old girl here who needs to be escorted home after being kidnapped".

Hearing a heavy sigh from the other side he laughed telling her the address he said "See you in about ten minutes"

"Wait I didn't even say-" hanging up on her he dropped the phone back into his pocket. Then pulling out a pack of cigarettes and a lighter he lit one up before taking a puff. He turned his head back towards Wraith who exited the building.
Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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Joel Beck
Location: Forming a reluctant alliance outside a mattress store
Tags: Jack


Wraith exited the front of the mattress store. The rain had let up to a light drizzle now, but the night was still dark and moonless. A puddle splashed as he walked across the sidewalk towards Jack. They had worked, begrudgingly, together in the past. He didn't know much about the other man. The whole experience had reminded him why he preferred to work alone. But they were dealing with something new here, and perhaps he could use the backup.

"Human trafficking is one thing, but the organ trade is a whole other beast. As far as I know, none of the eastside gangs have dabbled in body parts in the past. Something's wrong here."

Wraith approached the bench where Jack sat and looked down at him. "I've got some new intel on a guy higher up on the food chain that these sacks of shit work for. If we find him, we find who they were planning to sell those shipments to."

He held his arms out in front of him and his suit disengaged from his form. Almost like a liquid, it pooled into his outstretched hands until it retook a solid shape, neatly folded. Joel had cleaned up from his last round of fights, but he still looked like he had gone one on one with a semi truck. A fresh bruise had formed on his cheek and his forehead sported a new gash, dressed with two strips of butterfly tape. Otherwise, he looked passable for normal. Joel stuffed the suit into a drawsting backpack he'd been wearing underneath and shouldered it.

"Come on. We gotta' catch a train to Englewood."
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by Blazion
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Location: East Chicago Streets


Investigating the railyard before the approaching sirens arrived had dredged up little else; another cargo container that had telling signs but seemingly hosed down - for what good it would do, a burner phone with only one disconnected number in the history, and a few sets of tire tracks from the meeting area. Considering how many vans were in Chicago, let alone vehicles in general, the tracks would likely do little. Still, Grim had taken the time to snap a few pictures.

Surprisingly, they came in handy.

It was crouching on the roof of a building, taking the time to listen in on the police scanner app on her phone that Zoey found out what had delayed the police to her little performance. Apparently someone else was operating that night - not unusual, except for what was called in. Five different sets of supposedly thwarted kidnapping attempts. Considering that it was rare for that many in a night, and even rarer for the kidnappers to be strangers, it was exceedingly peculiar. Well, until paired with her own information.

The call came in for the sixth one as she was listening, and this one truly caught her interest. A group of men, an attempted kidnapping, a van. It wasn’t even that far.

With a quick set of commands the Grim-branded drones diverted course to patrol the area the call came from. Considering how close it was, the hero beelined it over as well and ended up there before the sirens were even in hearing range. And what a find it was! Three men, none of which Grim could recognize - and not just because of some damage to the faces. With one of them beginning to stir he took a moment to ziptie the three men’s wrists and ankles, ignoring the weak protests. From there, a quick investigation of the van showed what was almost a classic kidnapping kit stashed in the back. Rope, duct tape, a knife.

More interesting was the tires, due to the fact they had the same tread as those he had taken a picture of at the railyard. Was it a coincidence? Sure, on its own a van with the same set of all purpose tires would’ve been a coincidence. Paired with the fact these men were reportedly in the middle of an abduction? Well, that’s more than just chance.

Sirens were getting close now. Grim took a moment to sweep the van, finding a bloodied knife on the pavement beneath it. Odd. None of the men he checked over were stabbed, but–

“Grim? Is that you?”

The knife disappeared into the shadows beneath the van as Grim straightened, turning and raising a hand in the face of the glaring lights.

”Chicago’s finest!” Grim’s voice boomed behind the glowing red mask, deep voice lilting cheerfully.

“Were you the one to call this in?” The officer approached cautiously, but more relaxed than he had previously and holstering his weapon. The hero however just shook his head, raising his hands in a shrugging motion.

“Would that I could take the credit! I’m afraid this one wasn’t my work. I’m in the dark, as it were.”

The officer didn’t laugh. Neither did his approaching partner. Grim laughed enough at his own joke for all of them.

An alert caught the masked man’s attention, diverting him towards his phone. As soon as he realized what his drone had found, Grim raised a hand towards the officers.

“Well, its been a pleasure as always.”

“Wait, aren’t-”

“Sorry, business calls! Don’t look so grim about it, we’ll meet again!” The hero did a jaunty little salute before pivoting and doing what would equate to a swimmer’s dive towards the nearby alley, disappearing into the coalescing shadows.

Grim reappeared stepping out of the shadows cast by a dumpster three blocks down, then disappeared into the shadow cast on the wall and reappeared on top of the building. Shadow step, shadow step, shadow step - a quick rush to make up ground following the drone’s signal. It wasn’t too far off, at least when you could travel as he did, and when Grim caught up to the drone that was silently following its target he didn’t hesitate to disappear into the shadows once more.

“Well, well! I’ve never seen an arctic fox this far south!” Shadows cast along the wall, the ground, even Kitsune’s very own stretched forward and began to coalesce into a puddle in the alley. As Grim rose from it, the shadows seemed to swirl akin to smoke around him, before he swept into a bow. “Grim, at your service, though I assure you I’m no foxhound.”

A clawed hand made of pure shadow rose up beside Grim, uncurling at chest height to reveal the bloodied knife he had swiped from the crime scene.

“And this, I believe, is yours. At least, the blood is - very valuable thing to leave behind, especially for us upstanding citizens who enjoy masks a little too much.”
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by King Cosmos
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Kitsune


Her first instinct was to punch the figure as it began to rise out of her shadow. It was only caution that held her back, the uncertainty of who or what it was she was dealing with, whether or not it was a threat, but it was a close run thing; if it was a threat, better to be on the offensive than not, but the deciding factor was the fact that though she was confident in her skills Kitsune doubted her ability to beat up a shadow. Better to play it safe for now.

Safe, in this case, meant shifting into a loose fighting stance as the stranger bowed to her, angling her body she had one shoulder and one foot in front of the other; ready to react without looking overly threatening. Bad jokes and an introduction followed, the name Grim being thrown out, but it told her nothing; she had, unfortunately, never paid much attention to the heroes and villains of the city she lived in despite arguably being one herself. It had never seemed important, never expected it to matter in her small corner of the city where she stopped late night robberies; clearly she was mistaken. She had no idea whether the person in front of her was a hero or a villain, a saviour or a psycho.

A shadowy hand rising from the ground beside Grim had her body tensing, fist clenching; even more so when the hand opened to reveal a knife. But it wasn’t being brandished threateningly, it was being presented; the same knife that had cut a line across her ribs a few minutes, still with her blood staining the edge. It gave her pause, even more so at Grim’s next words.

Would the police run a blood test on a knife found at a random crime scene to find out who she was? Even if they did, would that be enough for them to figure out what she was spending her nights doing? She assumed not, someone like her was hardly important enough to warrant the effort, but she couldn’t be sure. Something to keep in mind the next time this happened. The last thing she needed was attention from the police.

Still, as much as she appreciated the advice, if that’s how she chose to take it, she wasn’t going to let this person know that. The mask hid her face and the frown she wore, and when she spoke she tried to keep her voice as unconcerned as possible. “Half the heroes in this city don’t even bother to hide who they are, or work for the police themselves. I’m not worried.”

Her hands unclenched then, body relaxing as she remembered that she was still tensed up for a fight. “Vaguely threatening warnings aside; what do you want?”
Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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Joel Beck
Location: Fighting shitty villains outside some Englewood apartments
Tags: Jack


The subway wasn't too crowded this time of night. There were a couple late night workers and a drunk sharing their car. Joel sat in silence with his new companion, happy to do so, until something in the seat across the way seemed to catch his attention. He slowly grew agitated.

"What did I tell you about following me?" He hissed at the empty seat across from him. "No, I don't care. Go home. Your home, not mine."

A woman a couple seats down took notice of this one sided conversation and pointedly ignored it.

Joel settled back into his seat after a moment, apparently getting over whatever the hell it was he thought he saw. The train came into the station not long after.

As the pair ventured out into the dilapidated neighborhood, Joel took the liberty of opening his bag and donning his suit. It flew out as if it had a mind of it's own and engulfed his form, settling into it's usual appearance in seconds.

Wraith lead the way to the apartments he'd been told about. They made it to the entryway before shit went sideways.

"Well, if it ain't the washed up sleuth and the psych ward escapee," A voice cracked behind them. Wraith turned and set eyes on the five members of The Bad Boy's Club. It was a silly name for a bunch of super powered thugs, but who was he to judge.

"Don't bring his mental illness into this, it's rude," Wraith quipped back. "And why is there a C-list villain talking to us?"

"Fuck you, man. We got the call that you were gonna' try some shit with our boy Devon. He called us to come rearrange your faces for ya'."

"You're really the best he could do?"

This was their leader, End Zone. Big, stupid, strong, allegedly bullet proof. There was also Shank, an expert knife thrower and sharp shooter; not really a superpower, but the bar was set pretty low already. Mutt: a man with either a really strange condition or was possibly a werewolf. Or a furry. He was covered in hair, had claws and fangs, enhanced senses, that sort of thing. Hotrod, who could produce bony spikes from his body that were, well, hot. Lastly, there was Mindraker. Typically the secret weapon, he could manipulate minds, but Wraith had a feeling that his mind might be a little too...spicy for him.

Wraith's insult set End Zone off, and he came barreling at the two. Wraith lunged out of the way just in time to let the oversized man crash into the building behind him. Unfortunately, it didn't seem to deter the two brain cells inside that thick skull. End Zone turned on Wraith as Shank launched a large throwing knife right at him. The knife struck Wraith in the throat, and he immediately pulled it out and sunk it into End Zone's chest. Bulletproof, but not knife proof. Interesting.

"You fucking stabbed me!" End Zone cried out with disbelief, "You tights aren't supposed to fucking stab people! The hell is wrong with you?!"

"You don't know a whole lot about me, do you."

End Zone removed the knife and held his wound. He was tough, Wraith would give him that. As he bled, the villain charged at Wraith, and a loud, messy fight would begin.
Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Blazion
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Location: East Chicago Streets


“Vague- Vaguely threatening?!” The shadows that still wisped around Grim’s feet abruptly began gathering behind him, barely solidifying into the shape of an ornate chaise in time as he tipped backwards, arm thrown above his head. The shadow claw that was beside the hero, still and quiet, abruptly clenched into a fist that swallowed the knife within it. It then morphed, twisting shape to a waving hand fan still connected by a long inky tendril to the ground.

“Imagine! I, Grim, being only vaguely threatening! I should retire. Tell Timmy I’m being sent to Pawpaw’s farm. I’ll chase chickens and relive my glory days of striking fear into criminals.”

In a mimicry of his first appearance the chaise beneath Grim, the fan, and Grim himself sunk into the ground, before he stepped out once more. This time he cleared his throat, the sound distorted and rumbling akin to an animal’s growl. Something in the hero’s posture changed then, hands resting on his hips and ramrod stature looming tall.

“Tonight, you stopped six kidnapping attempts.” The change could cause whiplash, the playful lilt of a deep voice now serious and factual. “And I found the signs of large scale human trafficking into the city.” Here, the masked hero paused briefly. In truth, he couldn’t be a hundred percent certain that all six call ins to the police could be laid at the feet of this masked woman, but considering the pathing of each incident flowing into the other, it seemed almost like a patrol route. Perhaps it was mere coincidence, but as they say: once is chance, twice is coincidence, third time’s a pattern.

“Someone is looking for a large amount of bodies. So, arctic fox, I ask you: what do you know?”

An alert rang out.

Grim stayed rock still for a moment before he lifted his hand, and in the darkness cast in the alley his phone seemed to merely emerge from his palm. The red glow of the mask tilted, before the hero hummed thoughtfully.

“A fight at some nearby apartments.” He dutifully informed the other mask, the light of his phone washing out some of the black of hiw own mask and hiding in the ridges of metal. All at once Grim’s posture relaxed, and he flashed a quick finger gun with his free hand. “I’d still love to chat you up about tonight, but looks like some powered thugs are getting into a street fight - or trying to kidnap people right out of their bed and facing resistance. Who knows?”

Almost like a call to arms a howl sounded faintly, followed by a crash like a car wrecking into the side of a building. Grim didn’t flinch.

“I’m going to find out either way, if you care to join.” He stepped to the side, abandoning the guard dog position from the end of the alley to motion towards the wall at his back in a sweeping gesture. Instead of slapping into the brick, the shadows against the side of the alley seemed to darken and his arm emerged right into the wall up to the forearm, an invitation.
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by King Cosmos
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Kitsune


By the time Grim finally got around to telling her the point of this conversation, Kitsune was starting to reconsider whether or not she could get away with punching him.

All of these theatrics might have been cute had she not been bleeding, exhausted and in pain; as it was she was all of those things and her temper was a little but short as a result. She could admit that the sudden shift into seriousness gave his words some weight however, her spine stiffening unconsciously, so maybe there was a purpose to the performance.

“Don’t know for certain if they were all kidnapping attempts, but sure let’s say they’re all connected.” Six was an unusually high number of incidents for her to have to deal with in one night, but not unheard of; particularly on weekends and during certain parts of the year. It was unusual for everyone she ran into be in groups of at least three, carrying so many weapons or for them to put up so much of a fight. She had been growing increasingly certain that something was off as the night went on; a human trafficking ring wasn’t what she expected the answer to be, but it kind of made sense.

Before they could talk on it any longer, they were interrupted by Grim’s phone ringing; a fight, nearby, between powered individuals. Not something she wanted to get involved with if she was being honest, not already hurt as she was, but if it was happening close enough that they could already hear it then it was kind of her responsibility to do something. She would not, however, be accepting Grim’s invitation.

“Lots of dangerous people out tonight; not safe for a girl to be accepting invitations from strangers. Just point me in the right direction.”
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by Blazion
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Location: East Chicago Streets to a villain slapfight outside Englewood Apartments


“Englewood Apartments. Take a left, three blocks down, one right.” Rather than seeming insulted by Kitsune’s rebuff, or even making another quip, Grim merely nodded before turning to submerge the rest of his body into the shadowed wall as though walking through a doorway. Behind him, the shadows settled and became still once more.

It took a few different portals to get closer, but it’s not as though Grim could just open them anywhere! At least he didn’t have to worry about the Fox getting lost, if she truly was coming – the fight was loud, with absolutely no hint of subtlety. Even without having been alerted both of them could’ve easily just followed the sound.

The last shadow step brought him to the roof of the apartment, where he took advantage of the height for reconnaissance. Seven people, seemingly three - no, two one five. Grim could only place a name to Wraith, Endzone, and Mutt, but a couple others tickled a vague recollection in the back of his mind.

No matter.

The biggest threat was seemingly End Zone, but he was too close to Wraith to do anything about. Considering what he’s seen, it might be the best to get the long range attacker out of the way anyway - he was hanging back, letting his bigger compatriots be a shield as he fired.

But he was standing still. So with a little hop, skip, and jump, Grim leapt from the building and landed right on top of him.

Now, that may be a little suicidal, not to mention homicidal, in normal cases. Just a little bit. With the shadow based powers however, Grim did indeed slam into Shank - only for them both to disappear into the man’s shadow as though he had tackled him into a pool. They reemerged in a nearby alley from the wall, Grim still mid tackle and slamming Shank into the bricks opposite. All the breath escaped Shank’s lungs, and there may have been a broken rib and possibly a concussion from how his head bounced off the wall.

“Better stay down, or I’ll break that clever little throwing arm of yours.” The growl that came from Grim’s mask was low and feral, before he grabbed Shank’s shirt to drag him out into the open with him towards the fight. He had no intention of leaving the man in the alley where he could escape easier, even if he was hurting right now.

”Gentlemen!” Once more the voice of the hero boomed, though it wasn’t accompanied by any spotlights this time. He dropped Shank on the ground beside him. “Surely housing isn’t so bad the landlords are having us fistfight?”

A snarl was his answer, before the werewolf-esque man lunged towards him.

“Ooo, a dog fight? We’ll see who’s bark and who’s bite!”
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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Joel Beck
Location: Fighting shitty villains outside some Englewood apartments
Tags: Grim


There was nothing graceful in the way Wraith fought. He drug Endzone to the ground, taking a beating while giving one back just as hard. The massive man was covered in deep slashes from the knife. It seemed clear that Wraith wasn't concerned with whether this villain lived or bled out on this stoop.

Finally, Endzone found his footing and hauled Wraith into the air. The vigilante felt his back slam into the brick behind him, hard enough to crush bone. A fist buried into his face, leaving an actual crevice in the stone and mortar. But Wraith still kicked and fought.

"How the hell are you still awake? How the hell are you still alive?"

"Spite," Wraith spat as he pulled his legs up between them and kicked hard enough to send the mountain of a man falling back. Wraith lunged at him like a rabid dog and wrapped his arms around the man's massive neck from behind. With all the strength the suit allotted him, he crushed down on Endgame's windpipe.

The villain let out a few rasps of air before he began to turn red, then blue. His eyes bulged. He suddenly began to thrash like hell, but Wraith's grip held strong. A dark, flowing cloak appeared in front of them. The form was unmistakable.

"You see him too now, don't you," Wraith growled quietly into Endgame's ear. "He isn't here to take you to the pearly gates, that's for sure." The look on the man's face was sheer and utter terror. Suddenly, Wraith released him.

Endgame fell to his knees, coughing and gasping, as the life returned to him. His eyes shot up at Wraith and he began to shamble away on the ground, tears streaming down his face. He didn't make it far before he succumbed to the blood loss. He was still alive. Probably.

Wraith turned to see that another hero had entered the fray. The distraction was enough to allow Hotrod to come up from behind and impale Wraith with a burning hot bone spear. He whipped around and pulled the spear from his body. Now covered in his own blood, it looked far more menacing. Wraith was going to teach these guys about handing him more weapons.

Hidden 3 mos ago Post by King Cosmos
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Kitsune


Akeno had never fought a super villain before. Not that the term really applied to the five low rent thugs in front of her, they were barely ‘super’ and even ‘villain’ was kind of a stretch when they were closer to common criminals than anything else; the point was that she had never had to fight someone who had powers like herself. Five minutes ago she hadn’t even seen anyone with powers, not until Grim had jumped out of the shadows and begun to put on a one-man show.

It wasn’t like she had avoided them intentionally, although she likely would have if given the chance; it was just that her world was small and people with powers were big, or at least moderately sized, and didn’t fit into her life. The crimes she dealt with were relatively minor; muggings and car jackings and break-ins and things like that. The kind of people she ran into were usually normal people; less than law abiding sure, but normal. It was why she never really thought of herself as a hero, despite the fact that she had powers, put on a mask and an approximation of a costume and stalked the night looking for evil doers. It was why she had never officially claimed the name that the media and people online had given her.

Any other night, she likely wouldn’t have gotten involved in a fight where seven or eight costumed people were trying to kill each other. It was out of her league, above her non-existent pay grade and more trouble and danger than she ever expected to find herself in when she first grabbed a store bought fox mask and made the dumbest decision of her life. But Grim had brought this to her attention directly, had asked her if she was going to do anything about it, and as much as she didn’t want to the reason she had made that dumb decision was because she couldn’t just stand by when bad things were happening and she felt like she could do something about it.

So when she found herself at the edge of the fight and she saw Shank rise to his feet and palm a knife while looking at Grim’s back, she made the second dumbest decision of her life.

Kitsune rushed forward and as Shank was pulling his arm back to throw the knife she kicked him in the back and sent him stumbling forward. The knife clattered to the ground as he used his hands to steady himself. He turned, easily spotting her white costume in the dark, and reached into his jacket for another weapon. Kitsune responded, but unlike the last person to try this on her Shank was faster and was able to draw the gun and point it at her before she could reach him. She had expected that though and instead of trying to stop him from drawing she sought to knock the gun away instead and lashed out with an outside crescent kick, her foot sweeping the gun from his hand before he had a chance to realise she was even attacking.

Using his momentary confusion she stepped forward and planted an elbow in his stomach. He double over in pain, but at the same time she saw his over hand reaching for another pocket and backed away just as he swung upwards with a second knife he had pulled from somewhere. A quick movement of his fingers saw the knife flipping around and he brought it back down at the end of his swing almost immediately to try and stab her. Catching the inside of his wrist with her forearm she was able to stop the knife before it and quickly moved to wrap her hand around the wrist before he could pull away or try anything else. He still managed something, letting go of the knife and letting it fall even as his other hand snapped forward to catch it out of the air and drive it into her gut. She saw it in time though and was able to catch the other wrist with her remaining hand as the knife fell to the pavement.

The whole exchange had taken maybe a few seconds at most and left them both tangled up with each other as she tried to hold both of his arms in place even as he struggled to free himself. She watched his legs in case he tried to kick her and watched his hands in case he had any other tricks, but he didn’t seem to have any moves that weren’t knife or gun related and she had deprived him of both of those for now. Having to maintain this position meant she couldn’t do anything either though and judging from the smile on Shank’s face he seemed to realise that too.

“So what now? Do we just hold hands until myyyaaRGH!”

She burned his wrists.
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Location: Englewood Apartments free streetside entertainment


”Round One: Fight!” Grim’s booming voice echoed from behind the mask, hands raised in an exaggerated, bobbing motion of a cartoonish boxer. Like a bull to a flag, Mutt charged forward - only to be snagged as his own shadow caught the man around the ankles, sending him crashing to the ground. At least, that would’ve been his destination if it wasn’t for Grim punching upwards - he was still quite a few feet in front of him, but the answering fist made of shadows that shot up to clock the criminal in the jaw was explanation enough.

“A hard right swing from the reigning champion! Will his opponent stay down for the count?”

“God, will you shut up?” Mutt groaned his words, having rolled to his back and hand touching his jaw. The wolfish man staggered to his feet, shaking off the blow like a dog shaking water before turning glowing, hateful eyes to his opponent. In return, the hero just laughed heartily.

“Someone has to keep this sad excuse for a fight amusing, might as well be me!” Grim’s head tilted hearing a scuffle behind him, a clatter of metal on pavement. The slightest glint of the knife that Shank dropped caught his eye, but in the moment he was making sure his back was covered Mutt lunged through the air, claws out.

The two hit the ground hard, most of the impact thrumming through Grim. Mutt wasted no time in slamming his knee into Grim’s gut before straddling him, hand rearing back to clock across the glowing mask. As he raised his hand again, the shadowmancer abruptly fell into the ground and disappeared into the man’s shadow. The sudden loss of mass beneath him caused Mutt to have to balance himself, even as he kicked backwards in preparation of someone appearing behind him.

He was correct, of course, since a hand did appear at his feet. However rather than going to strike, Grim’s gloved hand grabbed onto Mutt’s ankle and yanked him half into his own shadow, causing him to go further off balance, before the hero’s foot came out at Mutt’s midsection and kicked him away.

“Oof, I thought we were tagging in our teammates! Bad sportsmanship, there.” Grim’s voice was more haggard as he peeled away from the nearest alley’s wall, the sound of him sucking in air rattling through the mask like the roar of an engine. “I think we’ll need a penalty!” From the wisping shadows at Grim’s feet they sprung up, wrapping around his forearms and hands to double the appendages in size. He raised his shadow cloaked hands up, but Mutt only snarled and began to approach more cautiously. The two circled each other for a moment - and then, Mutt flinched as Shank’s high pitched cries pierced the air.

A dash forward, a dodge of swiping claws, and entering into the other man’s personal bubble led up to a solid, weighty clock right to his already bruising jaw.

“K.O! Our champion keeps his belt!” Mutt hit the ground hard, unconscious, and above them one of Grim’s usual drones shone a spotlight down on him - causing the shadows along his arms to dissipate in smoky tendrils. “Call me the dog catcher, this boy has been leashed!”

The spotlight cut out, and Grim turned his glowing eyes around. Arctic Fox was covering his back, Wraith was - well, Wraith was like everytime Grim has ever seen him. Bloodied and stabby. The man was effective though, having downed the biggest one and engaging with another, which left-

“Ah, fuck.”

Grim and Mindraker stared at each other across the street.

“... Could I interest you in some autographed memorabilia?”
Hidden 3 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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Joel Beck
Location: Making a mess someone else is gonna have to clean up
Tags: Grim, Kitsune


Wraith couldn't help but notice, as he plunged the second spear that Hotrod had attempted to attack him with through the man's right thigh, pinning him to the ground in place with the likewise pinned left thigh, that another hero had arrived on the scene. This one was smaller, more female, and less chatty. Wraith already liked her more than the showboat that was Grim.

He hadn't worked with Grim before, despite fan sites speculating wild theories about their similarities. Wraith didn't keep up with the fan sites anyway. But even he, under the massive rock he lived, had heard of the famously loud hero.

With Hotrod screaming for mercy, it seemed that this fight was coming to an end. Wraith had almost forgotten about that pesky little Mindraker, quiet and lurking as he was...
Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Blazion
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Blazion

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Location: Grim’s Mental Roadtrip


The offer of autographed memorabilia was being considered very seriously, if Mindraker’s thoughtful gaze was any indication. Grim slowly relaxed, fingers flexing as he considered the easiest way to go about this. Perhaps just a repeat of the solid punch that had Mutt doubling over earlier, try to take the man out in one hit-

A cry to his left dragged Grim’s gaze away from Mindraker, though his mask stayed facing the man even as his eyes moved. While he wasn’t looking, Shank had managed to swap the positions of himself and Kitsune, and was clutching her wrists in a bruising grip. A yelp then drew Grim’s eyes the opposite way, finding that Hotrod had actually managed to pin Wraith - the arguably insane man thrashing against the bone that held him down and bellowing.

The shadowmancer stayed still for a moment as he considered his options, finally settling back on Mindraker. The man hadn’t moved but gazed at Grim inquisitively, almost asking, ’What will you do now?’

He hadn’t attacked yet, so perhaps he was just an observer. Or waiting for his companions to fall. Either way, Grim’s decision was made.

“Now, don’t you know that fox hunting is banned?” The tall man flicked his left hand, and from his shadow a whip of shadow launched out to wrap around Shank’s ankle, yanking hard to bring him to the ground. Kitsune stumbled back, clutching burned wrists-

How did her wrists get burned?

No, there wasn’t time to muse on it right now. The spotlight that had shone on Grim moved, and abruptly flooded Hotrod with light in a blinding move. At the same time the shadow tendril that had grabbed Shank released him, flying the opposite way with Grim’s arm as he pivoted in place. The spotlight cut off after just a moment, only meant to momentarily cut off vision before the black whip went to smash across the criminal’s face, the body of the whip already going to wrap around his torso.
Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by ThisIsFine
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ThisIsFine

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Joel Beck
Location: Smack down in E-Town
Tags: Grim, Kitsune


"Fuck!" Wraith cursed and shielded his eyes from the sudden, blinding light. He had just been about to help these two and get this ridiculous excuse for a fight over with when Grim suddenly decided to burn out his retinas. "Watch where you point that." He assumed it had been a mistake, at least until a shadow bitch slapped him and coiled around him like a python.

"The hell you doing?!" He struggled in the shadow's grip. Grim didn't seem like the type to double cross, even if he had any unknown beef with Wraith. Why was he-

"It's Mindraker, dumbass."

"I told you to go home, Doug," Wraith choked the words out as the shadow squeezed air from his lungs. It seemed that, even in a dire moment such as this, Wraith still found the time to talk to empty space.

"Look at him, Raker's got your goth buddy under his thumb. And I'll bet if that girl in the dollar bin mask comes over, he'll try to wreck her shit too."

As much as Wraith hated the ghost butting into his work, when Doug was right, he was right. Grim couldn't do Wraith much harm aside from tremendous pain, but he wasn't willing to make that bet about the fox girl. He had to keep the other hero's attention and hope that fox girl knew to go after the creep on the sidelines, not them.

"Snap out of it Grim!" Wraith shouted, hoping that maybe the hero could fight off Mindraker's control.
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