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Leonard watched the show with a mixed interest. He wanted to be fully invested in the goings on of the stage from an audience perspective, but being here on business put a damper on that. Because of this, he was neither as entertained as he would have liked, nor as observant as he would have been. Sloppy, that's what this ordeal had made him. Ah, what the hell. He could afford to relax a minute and enjoy it, couldn't he?

Then they called for Mieke's participation, and a switch flipped in the back of Leonard's mind, bringing him to full attention once again. No way could that have been a coincidence! How many dozens or hundreds of people were seated here, and they just so happened to randomly pick the young girl who had seen them earlier and discovered they were stand users? Leonard didn't buy it for a single solitary nanosecond. Mieke needed to be protected, for the good of the mission, but they couldn't just interrupt proceedings either. In a quick flurry, Leonard tore a piece of paper from his notebook and quickly sketched the first symbol that came to mind. It was sloppy, but it would have to do. The Celtic rune for "guardian angel." Hopefully being done in such a rush didn't hamper its ability, or give Free Bird alternate interpretations. Quickly he shoved the paper in front of Mieke's face before she left her seat, making certain she saw the symbol and took in the power of Free Bird.

Leonard then crumpled the paper and stashed it in his pocket. Only time would tell what happened now.
O-Chul continued pounding into Sam's body in a lightning fast flurry, each strike becoming two in the patented method of muay thai combat. Sam's insides were quickly getting bruised as the force pressed through his skin, beginning to damage the blood vessels and muscles, but this had a price. The Asian fighter was so confident in his power, so focused on smashing through Sam's well built body, that he failed to notice the slower man's movements, like when you take your eyes off of something figuring it to be of no concern, only to realize too late it crept up on you whilst paying it no attention. The larger man's grip was painful to O-Chul, who let out a gruff rasp of pain. The surprise, the powerful fingers pressing into the meat of his shoulders, prevented him from being able to properly escape the grapple. Instead he did what he had been doing all along: Go on the offense. He met Sam's kick with a sharp knee strike, focused on Sam's shin. "K̄hīpnāwuṭh phin!" he shouted as his knee connected with Sam's leg. A burning hot spear of dark blue chi radiated forward on contact, burning through Sam's clothes and deep into his flesh. The attack had not only penetrated his normally unbreakable skin, but it still carried the blunt force of a muay thai knee strike, which didn't feel too good either.

For his own troubles, the attack didn't stop the pure force of Sam's kick, which sent O-Chul flying across the street. He collided with asphalt and went rolling back, bouncing twice before ultimately landing on his butt. With a rather pained expression, his got back up with a noticeable limp. He took another fighting stance, but kept his injured leg off the ground. You didn't need to be a doctor to tell that Sam's kick had torn up his knee real bad. "Nice. It's been a while since Anybody but the boss has been able to punish me like this. Don't tell me you're all done, giant man, because I'm just getting started!"

Meanwhile, the Swedish woman shot forward to strike at her Native American opponent with a caution about her, testing his reaction and instigating her own reaction accordingly. First, a quick boxing jab to his outstretched hand to test the waters. Pull back if it looks like he is ready to counter. Her hand moved closer and closer, yet Pacho didn't seemed to move himself. It was only a split second, but the time to perform a counterattack had already passed by, he missed his chance. Or at least, that's what the situation would have been against any other opponent. In a flash crackling energy manifested from his outstretched hand, chi taking the form of vibrant yellow electricity, which in turn took shape in the form of a tomahawk. In a single fluid motion Pacho yanked down, the underblade of the electric tomahawk catching onto Naja's wrist as though it were made of something physical, throwing her off balance. In the same movement, he slid his position around her by 90 degrees, now facing toward the South. In an instant his conjured weapon fizzled from existence, causing no real damage on its own and having only lived for less than a second, just long enough for that single movement.

"East to position, South for power. Southern Boar Strike!" With his other hand, Pacho brought down a powerful forearm strike to Naja's upper back, just below the neck. Had he used this much force on one of those Tunnel Snakes, they'd have been KOed in a single move. Luckily Naja was made of tougher stuff, but she could not afford to let this man's unusual style and ability catch her off guard like that again.




O-Chul: Special Technique Discovered - K̄hīpnāwuṭh phin: Translation "Pin Missile." O-Chul forms a powerful, piercing spear of chi from his knees for a crippling, piercing blow.

Pacho: Fighting Style clue - Has ability to create hard matter electric weapons from chi to facilitate attacks, but they only last a fraction of a second.
Cassim and Iago


Cassim paid close attention as the skeleton and his three child-like companions introduced themselves, whilst Iago struggled in futility against Cassim's grip. This Jack fellow seemed to be friendly enough, even a bit jovial in his tone, and spoke of a tradition the King of Thieves had heard of in the West: Halloween. He even claimed the title of Pumpkin King, something which the Arabian man thought very interesting. He had heard of only one tale surrounding Halloween involving some Jack and pumpkins.

"The Pumpkin King you say? Might you be the Jack I've heard stories of, who trapped the devil in a tree for immortality, and in response was forced to wander eternally as Jack-o-lantern?" he asked, taking Jack's hand. True, this Jack was a skeleton and no pumpkin-turned-lantern was around, but myths and legends often had a way of being muddled over time. That was the difficulty of oral traditions, and it made treasure hunting a particular kind of challenging.

"This is all very fun but Cassim, buddy, friend, don't you think it'd be just a wee bit smart to GET THE HECK OUTTA H-mrfgle." Cassim silenced Iago by holding the bird's beak shut, and shot him the sort of look a parent would give a small child to be stern.

"Apologies for my friend's rudeness. We wouldn't want to attract the attention of the locals now, would we Iago?" Iago eyed the skeleton, then Zero the ghost dog, then back to Cassim. He made an audible gulp, but could say nothing. Cassim turned his attention to the three children, launching questions back to back. "His name is Iago. He is a magic bird, but not good for much, I'm afraid." Iago shot him a dirty look, which he mentally chuckled at. "And you have the honor of standing in the presence of the King!"

Cassim proceeded to bow as low as he was able, while still mounted to his horse. As he straightened back up, he held up cuff link, which came from Jack's suit. "Of Thieves!"

Iago shook his head nervously, whispering into Cassim's ear. "I know you like to be dramatic and all, but do you really think it's a good idea to advertise that fact to a bunch of monsters?"
"Looks like we've got some challengers. Good. I was hoping my day wasn't going to be wasted." The tattooed man glanced to his companion, Pacho. "I'll give you first pick, buddy."

The Native man looked between the two fighters, Sam and Naja, very closely. Then his eyes settled on one, and he uncrossed his arms long enough to point at them. "You," he spoke very curtly, addressing Naja. Pacho moved around to face her directly before taking a fighting stance, facing his chosen opponent from the East. Interestingly, the stance he had taken was one the fighters would recognize as the stance of a knife fighter, or perhaps someone holding a club, yet he held no weapons. Even his hand was loose in the way one would be when gripping a weapon.

"I guess you would pick her," the Asian man shrugged. "Yeah, big guy wouldn't be too good for you, I imagine. Lucky for me I can break through walls like him." He stood facing Sam, taking his own stance, one much more easily recognized than his companion's: he was definitely a practitioner of muay thai.

"I'm guessing you're not much of one for acrobatic movement, am I right big guy? So we'll just have to see how long it takes for your defenses to crumble. Something tells me you won't die as easy as my last sparring partner." The Asian man sudden jet forward at great speed rivaling Naja's own boosting ability, but strangely enough he didn't move a muscle. It was as though he were somehow gliding just barely, imperceptibly, above the ground. In a flash he was upon Sam, unleashing a number of strikes from his fist and elbows, each punch folding into an arm attack. The strikes carried with them a piercing force. They weren't breaking Sam's skin, but they still hurt.

Meanwhile, Pacho hadn't made a move toward Naja, holding his position steadfast. His focus was unbroken by his partner's fight. It was as though only he and his opponent existed in a white void, and he would not make the first move.




O-Chul: Style discovered - Muay Thai
Special Technique discovered - Shadow Glide: The user maintains their stance and becomes lighter than air, propelled forward by the power of their chi.

Pacho: ???
Cassim and Iago


Cassim rode at a slow, pleasant trot through the streets of Paris, streets that were growing increasingly empty as the sun dipped down below the horizon. The King of Thieves kept his promise, allowing Iago to ride atop his shoulder. He had had all the fun he figured that little game was worth anyway. Now it was time to find some new fun in an old city, to see what had changed in the last ten or so years it had been since he'd set foot here. If things were not radically different, it could still be a wild, romantic land... With a deathly intolerant side hiding just beneath the facade of cheer.

"Hey look!" Iago began, gesturing to a nearby storefront. "A baker! What'dya say ol' buddy? Up for pilfering a bit of bread to split?"

Cassim shook his head, eyeing the baker warily as they shut their doors, clearing staring back at the thief and bird with prejudice. "They've done nothing to deserve it, and times are not as hard as they were in my youth. We can afford whatever meals we need." Iago shrugged in a "couldn't hurt to ask" sort of manner as Cassim continued. "Besides, Iago, Paris is someplace we must be vigilant. This place has a history with foreigners such as ourselves, especially those with darker skin and connections to magic. Real or perceived."

"Ya don't say?" the bird responded, leaning on one wing like a shoulder, clearly only paying the minimum amount of attention required.

"I do. Even as recently as only a few years ago, the Romani people were burned at stakes in the name of their God. They were believed to be untrustworthy liars, thieves-" he gestured toward himself, then back to Iago. "-and practitioners of dark magic."

This caught Iago's attention, who loudly gulped in fear. "Well then, eh, um... Polly want a cracker? Grawk?"

"Now you're getting it," Cassim nodded.

"Just one thing, then. If these people are so paranoid about magic and whatnot, how do you explain something like that?!"

Iago gestured to a dark alleyway, drawing Cassim's gaze. Something was darting around the shadows, but it didn't look normal. Still, it was difficult to make out the details, so Cassim directed his horse a bit closer, grabbing a lit lantern torch from the street. Once a bit closer, the thing turned out to in fact be several things. Three children, carried inside a large porcelain bathtub which appeared to be... Moving? And a, uh. Hm. Er, well.

"I see what ya mean, Cassim. Clearly these people have a lot to be afraid of what with the whole GIANT SKELETONS WALKING AROUND! I'M OUTTA HERE!"

As Iago attempted to flee, the natural reflexes of his human companion reached out and caught the parrot by his tail, preventing Iago from truly fleeing. "Fascinating," he breathed out in wonder. He had held the Hand of Midas, stared a giant, city sized turtle in the eye, befriended a genie, and met many a magical creature in his time. There was no fear for this. Only excitement. "I do hope you're not absconding with these children, skeleton-creature. It would be a pity to dirty my cloak in a fight after such a nice day of riding."
Courier 6 and Ratchet

Level 4 - (29/40) EXP (+3), Level 3 - (29/30)
Location: Castle Interior
Word Count: 1259


Ratchet, safely disguised beneath his new invisibility, had rounded the backside of the evil Bowser alongside another of his companions, the little girl in the hat. Naturally she was unaware of his presence, which he almost gave away by accident thanks to the rather comical results of the evil Bowser attempting to attack his hologram decoy. Thankfully he was able to stymy his laughter, as it would still be possible for the dragon like creature to turn round and squash both he and the kid, while they located an axe shaped lever with some drawn instructions. Welp, can’t have a medieval castle without a classic throne room booby trap, can ya? Not that it was terribly helpful in the moment what with how positions had changed, but still nice to know the owner could have people dropped into a pit of lava on a whim. Real good stuff. Very indicative of a just and fair ruler.

Meanwhile, the Courier’s laughter died away as a sudden headache began to build up. The good feelings he had been experiencing for a while now were beginning to wane. His body was still bulked up, but the jet, oh the jet, it was disersing out his system. That was no good at all. What was good was how the dragon Bowser now lay before them in a messed up heap, practically groveling at the feet of their own Bowser… With an offer of power. The power of his soul.

Immediately the Courier swapped out the Revolution for his Ratslayer, something with a great deal more precision. Tora and Poppi, they tried to convince Bowser not to take in the spirit. The Courier was no going to take a chance and roll the dice on words. Bowser was too stubborn, too thick headed for that sort of thing. Bang! A bullet struck the spirit dead on, but had no effect. Not even the tiniest scratch. Damn, It seemed to be impervious to damage! He strolled up to everyone, rubbing the side of his head slightly.

”You hired me to make sure you and Kirby made it to the castle. I fulfilled the details of my job, so I have absolutely no problems putting as many bullets in you as it takes to make sure you don’t get up again. That’s exactly what’ll happen if you merge with that spirit.” Then something wondrous began to happen! The spirit had gotten away, but as it did a wave of gentle darkness dispersed out around them all, enveloping everything within the castle! The Courier jumped back a bit, shooting at the wave uselessly. Ratchet jumped as well, moreso in surprise. Neither of them had anything to worry about, it had seemed, as this wave was purifying Galeem’s influence from all the mushroom headed people wandering the halls. Color returned to the people and the scenery in a most marvelous fashion. So this is what it meant to take down one of Galeem’s chosen bosses, eh?

It wasn’t much longer after that that the centurion had decided to take on the spirit of MegaDragonBowser into himself, declaring that his devotion to his emperor and God to make him incorruptible. The Courier certainly didn’t believe a second of the rhetoric, having known a few too many Romans devoted to their Caesar, so he kept the Ratslayer trained on Agoston. Ratchet was likewise suspicious, and watched closely from a distance, but didn’t have any weapons at the ready. He only wanted to observe. Both looked on as Agoston grew in size, muscles rippling from his body in a flaming transformation, horns forming atop his head to match the monster they had just slain. Once it was all said and done the centurion came out of it all more boisterous, louder and obnoxious… But he didn’t appear to be any more malevolent.

At some point during all the proceedings a woman in pink descended from the stairs near Ratchet, declaring them all to be heroes. She made the executive decision that a feast should be held in their honor. Though the woman in pink never introduced herself, it wasn’t a leap in logic to assume that she was this Princess Peach that Bowser had spoken of before when he pointed out the castle in the distance. Ratchet was all too happy and eager to join her for this celebration. It wasn’t everyday that you got the royal treatment from, well, a royal!

“I’d be very happy to join you, uh, milady!” The lombax gave a low bow, looking quite comical as he nearly tipped over, now a bit top heavy from his new longer body. He followed behind Princess Peach quite closely.

A bit further away, the Courier nodded at the princess’s proposal. It certainly sounded good, and he couldn’t deny he was hungry, but at the same time… Food wasn’t what he needed. First he wandered over to Blazermate to get some of her fast action healing. It was a bit embarrassing to be walking around with scorched skin exposing his sub-dermal armor. Once that was done in a few seconds, he wandered back over to the large pile of ash that used to be the body of their foe. Taking out his empty whiskey bottle, the Courier filled it up to the brim with ash, figuring he could find a use for the material. Perhaps a new chem he could concoct?

The Master of Masters then entered the castle, alongside their pink charge Kirby, as well as the girls Linkle and Minako, and one of the bridge fighters summoned by that giant hand, who looked like he had been freed. Wait, the girls were still outside dealing with that guy? Wow, that took a long time. Oh yeah, Minako could summon that horrifying death thing! Fucking shit that would have been helpful wouldn’t it?! Anyway, the Master of Masters (Courier 6 made a mental note to start calling the guy “mom” for short and see how he reacts) gave them a congratulations, reminding them all that there were twelve more monsters like the one they had just beaten. Twelve more? Damn. If they were all as powerful as that evil Bowser, they might not even have any of the original group left by the time they reached the angelic being in the sky. The thought was kind of sobering, to remember how monumental their task would be-Ow!

Damn, thinking with the ever-growing throbbing in his head was a pain in the ass. Now there was someone entirely new shouting out for a fight? Ugh, what a pain in the mother fucking ass. He didn’t have time for this and the guy was trying to kick Bowser. Of all the group to try to kick, you go with Bowser?! Dumbass wouldn’t last more than a minute unless he had some serious tricks up his sleeves. The man was definitely buff, no question about that, but not buffer than a giant fire breathing spike-covered dragon turtle that had somehow grown even more giant in the last few minutes. The Courier opted to completely ignore this newcomer and instead approached the exotic dancer, Din, speaking to her as though there wasn’t a new fight going on right next to them.

”I’ve got a number of different chems I can make to help with future battles, but I’ll need ingredients. I saw you grow some plants. After the feast, would you care to help?”
you guys think so? i was under the impression that it was off limits, and by "take care of it" @Lugubrious meant destroy it.

I mean if The Centurion was a flying fire person with dragon wins that would be great. But it might be too dangerous, right? or is it just Bowser who cannot excepet Evil Bowser's spirit because...well, then we would just get evil bowser again, lol. But if any of us could become evil I'm not sure. If anyone had the will to resist the allure of personal power it would be a borderline brainwashed egalitarian, honor-bound fascist.

but yeah mechanically it would be pretty neato. but also...potentially evil.

Am I just making this up, DM? OOC will any of our characters turn evil if we take the spirit of MDB? Or is it just a risk reward type thing

dragon wings...evil....dragon wings...evil

hmmm


It’s things like this that not being in the Discord get you locked out of the loop on. We were all already made aware of how the Bowser spirit worked in the chat server. Sometimes you just miss out. :/
@Stern Algorithm How do you feel about Din helping out the Courier in making some chems and survival medicines/poisons by growing some specialty plants with her Spring powers?
The Battle for Denver


Behemoth roared again, shattering all the glass within several blocks around where he had, quite literally, erupted from the ground. Dozens of civilians in those buildings were already dead, either from the shards of glass or from their bones breaking from the roar. The rest might as well have been dead, at least the ones closer in to Behemoth's location. The Endbringer carried with it a flood of deadly radiation. Frankly, the ones impaled by glass and their own bones were the lucky ones.

The Protectorate leaders sprang into action as soon as the first roar signaled the monster's arrival. For Legend and Alexandria the orders were fairly simple: just basic tactics of where to go and how to strike. Of course, the ranged attackers under Legend's guidance received an additional instruction. "Remember not to get too close! Behemoth is a completely unrestricted dynakinetic, which means getting into range will lead to your instant death as he manipulates the energy in your bodies!" A terrifying thought indeed, that power which had been commonly dubbed Behemoth's "kill aura."

Eidolon's group received more nuanced directives, more coordination. Maneuvers to pull off in order to hopefully slow the beast down, or at least keep him off balance long enough for Alexandria and Legend to land some solid hits. Most of the capes however had flocked to Inkscape, the leader of the local branch of the Protectorate, to engage in search and rescue. A job that many would consider the most valuable, important task of all. What was the point in beating back Behemoth if nobody lived to celebrate it, after all?

"I hate to say it, but everyone in a 2 block radius of Behemoth is already a lost cause. Focus your efforts on the area surrounding him at the epicenter, and try to get a bead on where he's going. Predict his movements, and we'll get people out before it becomes a problem," the octopus-faced hero commanded. "If you think you can fend off the radiation poisoning, then you can risk getting in closer. If not, then I want you to pull out the very second it looks like Behemoth is getting within a half mile of your location. We don't have any anti-rad pills in yet, but there's still more reinforcements on the way. Keep your comms open, and coordinate together."

He spared a glance down at Whimsy, helping to stabilize her. "If your phasing power will let you ignore radiation, then you can get in closer than most. That means you can search the rubble of areas he's already wrecked. If that's true, then you're on fallen hero rescue. Get out any of our comrades he knocks down in his rampage." With a tentacle wave, Inkscape catches the attention of another cape, someone with red lightning decals on their outfit. "Fleet-Foot, you're with this one."

After another roar, Inkscape couldn't delay any longer. "Move, team! Save as many lives as possible!"




Meanwhile, Decoy sat in her private quarters in the PRT building, monitoring all communications and camera feeds from throughout the city. Several of her cameras were already offline, either from the destructive power of Behemoth, or interference from the sheer energy output of the monster. She watched as Alexandria engaged Behemoth directly, slamming her fists right into the monster's face repeatedly. A bolt of lightning appeared from nowhere, striking her to the ground. Thankfully, and expectedly, she got right back up fighting again. Total invulnerability was an amazing power. Meanwhile, Legend was flying about nearby, just outside of Behemoth's kill range. An amazing display of differently colored lasers blasted through the air, turning and zigzagging around any obstacle in their path until they found their mark, striking Behemoth.

Then something amazing happened. Tulpa's projection manifested in a brilliant light, an intricate tangle of silvery strings, and struck Behemoth, cutting deeper than even Alexandria's unparalleled strength and Legend's unstoppable lasers! The tinker's eyes stretched open in shock, though she recovered quickly. Well, with this many parahumans to work with, shouldn't it have been expected? Still, the sheer power in that projection... It was unlike anything they'd ever seen. With Tulpa here, could they do it? Could they win without Scion? Could they not just beat Behemoth back, but finally kill it?

A sudden voice from the speaker caught Decoy's attention. "I found someone trapped in some rubble, but I can't get them out!" She recognized the voice of Retcon, one of Denver's more tame villains. "Could I get brute assistance?"

Decoy immediately answered. "I'm patching you through right now." She went to work, tapping her keys, when-

"AAAARGH!" The feed cut out to the sound of screaming and falling debris. Decoy pulled up her vitals monitor for the communicator that had been given to Retcon. Behemoth had claimed his first cape of the day. First, but far from the last. She glanced back onto the camera showing Tulpa battling Behemoth. Come on, Chambers-kun. You can do it.




Back in the field of battle, the various capes had already been sent running into a disaster zone. Tulpa's projection came back in for another shot at Behemoth and sliced a decent chunk out of the creature, but found increasing resistance the deeper it cut into the monster. In response, Behemoth turned its attention toward where Tulpa was standing, its single eye fixating on her position. In a flash, a bolt of lightning generated from nothing, blasting straight for the Ward. It circled around falling debris, completely breaking all known science regarding electricity following the path of least resistance, dodging and weaving around whatever was in its way. Then, a fraction of a second before Tulpa found herself fried to a crisp, the lightning was intercepted by none other than Alexandria herself! The powerhouse brute flew directly into the bolt from the side, taking the energy into her own body and falling to Tulpa's side with a loud thud! Smoke wisped up from her costume, but she stood none the worse for wear.

"I don't know who you are, but you're doing good work. If you can get further back, do it. That's an order." Without another word Alexandria took off, shooting straight toward Behemoth and socking him in the jaw.

Distracted, the Endbringer failed to notice the massive bolt of electricity flying into his not-flesh, courtesy of Alloy. The constant stream of power flaked off bits and pieces of his body, but nothing so consequential. It regained its footing and snagged Alexandria out of the air, smashing the invulnerable woman into the ground near Alloy so hard a huge crater was left behind.




"Margrave, come in." Inkscape's voice spoke over Margrave's ear piece. "Decoy informed me that we've got a big shipment of weapons just arrived courtesy of Muramasa, the mass-production tinker. I've assigned a mover to meet you back at the staging grounds. You're the only one who can carry that much equipment at once and deploy it to as many lower powered capes out here as possible. Get on it!"




Behemoth took two massive stomps forward, fighting against some energy shackles manifested by Eidolon. The energy shattered, dissipated, as Eidolon flew back from the recoil. Behemoth stepped through a large building, smashing right on as though it weren't even in his way. While this did kill a number of people, they were already good as dead anyway. The more concerning issue was the direction he was headed: straight for the PRT headquarters.

"Oh shit. Decoy!" Protean activated his comm unit immediately upon realizing what was going on. "You've got to get out of there! Behemoth is coming!"

"Negative, Protean," she replied, not even bothering to mask her voice with a modulator. "I have to manage the system, or else all communications go black and we're fighting blind."

Protean growled. "As your superior, I order you-"

"Superior in what way, Mark?!" she screamed over him. "You're a traitor, only spared the Birdcage because of this mess we're in now! And if you think you can leverage our personal relationship, then shut your fucking mouth, because we're done! I'm managing the system until that bastard kills me and that's final!"

For once, Protean didn't have anything to say. He blinked a few times, drawing a complete blank. He barely registered the giant monster not 500 feet away from him, shambling toward the place he once called home. "I still love you," was all he could manage.

"I never did. It was an act."

...

"I know."




A number of heroes tried desperately to halt Behemoth's advancement, to little effect. They only succeeded in slowing the beast down. Once it was in range, it called forth another lightning bolt, this one headed straight for the PRT building. It struck as intended, blowing out a large chunk of the building. Glass and stone rained down, some of which struck a nearby rogue cape, the Questioner, knocking her down and unconscious, bleeding badly. A case of the wrong place at the wrong time. Inside the power of the building surged, blowing out fuses and circuits, leaving the entire place in a state of blackout. Decoy had, miraculously, avoided taking any severe injury. The same could not be said for Love Craft, who was still in the medical wing on life support. The machine overloaded, exploding in the brute's face, burning and disfiguring them beyond recognition.




"This is a most troubling world I have found myself trapped within." Chivalry had raced into the PRT building, muttering to himself over the circumstances of his situation. He forced himself to put it behind him and focus on looking for people to get out. If Behemoth was able to continue marching forward, they would have more than some lightning to worry about. That creature's very presence would instantly kill any survivors and he had a duty to rescue as many as possible. The knight-like cape rounded a corner, finding a single PRT trooper unconscious near a blown out light. It had seemed the glass had embedded into his face. Chivalry picked the man up and slung him over one shoulder, then sliced through the wall with his free arm. The reinforced barrier was like air to his blades so long as he used his power.

Chivalry ran out of the building, carrying his single rescue, when he saw a woman, The Questioner, lying amidst glass and stone rubble. "Can I carry more than one?" He approached, examining her wounds. They were much more severe than the man he had with him. "This is Chivalry, on the West side of PRT HQ, on the outside. I've recovered two injured but need a way to transport them to safety." No answer. "Repeat, this is Chivalry, I need directions!" Still no response.

"Dammit, I guess we're on our ow-"

"I read you loud and clear, Chivalry. This is Dragon. I've connected with Decoy's communication system and rebooted it. I'm sending someone to pick you up right now."

"Thank the stars. Dragon, you have my than-" Chivalry's danger sense alerted him to an immediate threat. Dodge to the right, it told him. Falling danger, landing imminent. If he moved, whatever was falling would hit the woman on the ground. In a split second decision, Chivalry kept his feet planted firmly, tossing the unconscious man aside as gently as possible. No sooner had he finished that motion did an office table strike him from above, breaking in two over his body. Chivalry fell to the ground, unconscious, but proud that he could at least shield another person from certain death.




Salem approached the PRT HQ as part of Eidolon's squad. Fighting an Endbringer, he never thought it would come to this. But Sheila was fighting, so he knew he had to do his best. For her. A bolt of lightning struck the building, and his communications instantly went offline. The other capes were too busy fighting to give him any direction, so Salem had to make his own judgments. If Behemoth got any closer to the PRT, then the staging grounds would be compromised and a lot more people would die. He knew what he had to do. Getting in closer than was entirely wise, Salem concentrated on the ground beneath Behemoth's feet, instantly liquifying it into molten lava and depriving the monster of his footing. That and giving Behemoth one hell of a hot foot. Staggered, Behemoth's advancement stopped and it looked down as if to question just what had happened.




"Decoy! Director Kens!" Inkscape screamed out for nobody to hear. The comms were dead. For all he knew, everyone inside was dead. That was his base of operations, where he trained and worked with his team! Where he set the example for the Wards! Behemoth must not be allowed to get any closer! Luckily the Endbringer was stopped for a moment, thanks to a sudden pit of lava opening up beneath him. Inkscape saw his opportunity. He abandoned search and rescue. This was one of his good days. One of his best days. Time to go on the offense.

Concentrating, Inkscape began to swell up larger and larger, inflating in a rather comical fashion like a balloon. His elastic, rubbery body expanded to several dozen times its usual size. Then, it all expelled outward at once: hundreds of gallons of ink, which quickly became thousands. A tidal wave of inky blackness poured forth, which Inkscape swam in like the ocean creature he resembled. Almost like surfing a massive wave, except he controlled this wave, how it ebbed and flowed, where it went. As he moved forward, he concentrated on pulling every piece of paint and ink that came into his range. Entire buildings had their coats removed. All the capes he passed by lost the pigmentation to their costumes. The evacuating civilians clothing became devoid of color. It all served to swell into the continuously growing monstrously sized tidal wave Inkscape gathered until the wave was nearly four times the size of Behemoth himself.

Like a massive Inky golem, the flowing wave intercepted Behemoth from the front. "NOT IN MY CITY!" Standing atop his largest creation, the tidal wave of ink poured forth directly onto Behemoth, drowning the beast in a myriad rainbow of colors. The sheer force caused Behemoth to stumble back, tripping over the edge of the lava pool and collapsing onto its back, smashing tremors into the earth. Still Inkscape kept pummeling and pummeling Behemoth with the ink, like he was trying to drown the giant monster. As soon as the ink flowed over Behemoth's body, it circled back into the main body and continued to cycle over and over again, keeping Behemoth pinned down.

"ROOOOOOOOARRRRR!"
Behemoth had had enough. The sheer force of its roar blasted apart the ink current keeping it trapped, splattering paints and inks all around like a stormy rain. The lava it had tripped over, courtesy of Salem, rose up from the ground like an erupting volcano. Massive debris flew out everywhere, striking Salem and taking him out of the fight. Inkscape struggled to maintain his balance as the surface tension of his creation was destroyed. Then a single bolt of lightning struck him. Inkscape, and hundreds of thousands of gallons of ink, fell out of the sky.

Behemoth stood back up, then turned off into another direction. The PRT was safe. For now.




Injured: Love Craft, Questioner, Chivalry, Salem
Dead: Retcon, Inkscape
Cobra wasn't moving anymore. This, coupled with her absolute brutalization, was enough to force the few remaining Tunnel Snakes to back down. Only Viper was still fighting back for the honor of her sister, but found Light's restrictive bear hug too tight to escape from. "YOU MONSTERS! I'LL KILL YOU! I'LL KILL YOU ALL!" Stab. Stab. Stab. The knife wounds were shallow and growing more shallow with each attempt at a puncture. Finally Light tired of her little game and simply tossed Viper aside. The woman barely had any strength left to fight back, her one remaining knife feebly clutched in her hand. Kiyoshi's single blow immediately took her out, as the weapon fell harmlessly onto the street. Ting.

Match Complete!

Completion Reward: 1 Exp (All characters)
Mini-Boss Defeated: 1 Exp (Light, Kiyoshi, and Llexe)
Hidden Objective Complete (Protect store): 1 Exp (All characters except Llexe who caused damage to a tv)
Bonus Award: 1 Exp (Llexe for Lugs being a stand up bro and resolving a whole round of posts by himself)


A few of the Tunnel Snakes had already started to run away in fear, while others did their best to help up downed friends and colleagues. Nobody dared to get in close enough to help up Cobra. They weren't going to risk winding up like her, even if the crazy woman who did it was now preoccupied by the swordsman.

That's when a simple, nondescript Jeep pulled in. Well, nondescript save for the obvious large stylized dragon symbol painted on the sides. The Tunnel Snakes that were limping away suddenly changed into a full on run. No way were they sticking around for what was about to come next.

The driver and passenger doors opened up, revealing two uniquely dressed individuals. The driver was shirtless and wore a black studded gauntlet on his right arm, while covered in a copious amount of tattoos styled as a Chinese dragon and cloud design. He had long black hair, and a headband. The passenger was a dark skinned Native American man with a large scar across the bridge of his nose, and wore a bunch of gold, red, and brown clothing. His light black hair was fashioned into a ponytail that could reach his ankles, and tied off in a ribbon. Altogether his ensemble gave him the appearance of a feathered mesoamerican dragon.




"My my, would you look at this, Pacho?" said the tattooed man as he shut the driver door. "We get word that some rotten snakes are moving in on our turf, come out to do some exterminating, and find that the job has already been done for us. Heh. Amusing."

The Native man, Pacho, said nothing, merely crossing his arms. He stared down the scene with an intense glare. One got the feeling he was analyzing every detail.

"I don't recognize any of you. Far as I can tell, you're not members of any of the Six Disasters. And that means you're one of three things. Hopefuls looking to be recruited in, a new gang trying to make a name for yourselves, or you're meat." He clenched his gauntlet hand into a fist and smashed it into his own Jeep, caving in the door. The blow nearly knocked it right off the truck, though he didn't recoil or flinch at all. "If you're a new gang, walk away now and we won't have to stomp you out. Call it thanks for the favor you did us today. Course, if you're meat or hopefuls, then what happens next is going to be the same: a fight. You ready for a one on one?"

"Mm," Pacho grunted.

"Right, sorry old friend. Two on two."

Ring Match Begin!

Rules: Choose 1 or 2 representatives to battle Pacho and/or O-Chul, OR choose to leave immediately.
Threat Level: Moderate
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