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2 mos ago
Man, remember when there was going to be a Star Wars PW?


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Might toss a character sheet out tonight, tomorrow, or early next week. I've got a rather wild X-Men concept I haven't gotten the chance to work out, so I'll prob app with that.
Is the history you've written set in stone? It seems rather restrictive, as it writes the history for some of the bigger named heroes that some people may wish to apply for, such as Superman and Captain America, while also deciding the history of some villains and organizations.
Some more Compendium information. Some Queen Enterprises stuff should be coming later, which will probably be fairly boiled down.

Star City - Present Day
Issue 1.01.06: Sweet Child O’ Mine

Interaction(s): Green Arrow @Dblade26
Previously: 1.01.05: Estranged

As Connor’s eyes slowly opened, the first thing in his line of vision was a figure clad in a lightweight red uniform. Roy had pulled up an office chair and was waiting for the young impersonator to wake up, and stood up when he noticed Connor’s stirring. The former sidekick turned his back to fresh blood, his gaze redirected toward the huge screens mounted to the wall above a large console. Each monitor had a different file Roy could pull up on Connor: newspaper articles, blog posts, pictures, police reports… everything except a birth certificate. ”You’re not him. Who are you?”

At first, Connor thought maybe he might be dead. After all, there was a bunch of information on his life up on display, he’d been pretty sure he was going to die earlier, and an intimidating guy in red was asking him existential questions. A little Christian for his tastes but who knew…

But no, he definitely hurt too much to be dead, which meant that the red guy was-

”Oh! Awesome, you’re Speedy! I mean uh, you were, right? I’m Connor, Connor Hawke! Thanks for rescuing me from that weird Dark Archer! This is actually a huge honor for me! See um, how do I explain any of this…” Just going ‘I’ve wanted to be you since I was six’ seemed inadequate.

Roy raised a hand momentarily to command silence, turning his head to reveal that he wasn’t wearing any sort of mask. ”First of all, I’m not Speedy. Second of all, Connor… why are you are wearing that dumb outfit? Are you just some kind of super fan?” Roy’s arms remained folded, and his expression had an air of dismissiveness and the vague undertones of a disappointed father.

Connor’s spirits sank, but just a little. He was still face-to-face with not only a childhood icon but finally, really getting a chance to explain himself to one of the people he’d been hoping to meet this entire time.

”I mean no, huge fan but not like that. See...okay so apparently a long time that’s not I guess...well...I’m Oliver Queen’s son! Like, biologically. I came to Star City to finally talk to him but when I got here I found out he’d vanished and...the city was kind of in a panic without a hero around and I grew up in a sort of...well, warrior monk situation so I decided I’d try and help. Please, I didn’t mean to disrespect anything or do anything stupid. Just...people seemed really desperate and I didn’t want to do nothing.”

He hung his head, waiting for the rebuke that seemed inevitable given Roy’s tone.

Roy’s face remained consistent as he gave Connor his full attention, though he had to do his best to internalize the sigh he naturally wanted to give. He knew more than anyone what Connor was thinking, and more than anyone else what it would cost. ”Alright, assuming I buy the whole warrior monk thing… it doesn’t matter. You can’t solve all the issues out here. Sure, you took down one bad guy. Another is gonna take his place. And then another after that. And another. And one of them is going to kill you eventually. My best advice is that you stop now. While you were knocked out, I decided to do a blood test. You sure do have half his DNA, and you have every right to stay here. Hell, I can set you up with a college fund and you can go off and be a doctor or some shit. You would never have to worry about getting beaten or broken because you would have every damn luxury a boy could ask for.”

Roy opened his mouth to continue, but no words came out for a moment. His eyes were trained on Connor intently, and a look of realization washed over his face. Roy knew Connor more than he thought he could.. ”But you’re not going to give up the hood, are you?”

Roy’s approach was actually nicer than Connor assumed it would be- even if he winced at the word ‘bastard’- but it still lead to the same place Connor knew it would eventually, and his expression hardened the more Roy spoke. It was a nice offer, doubly so since he needed to leave the monasteries eventually but... ”No. I’m not.”

Now Connor had to stand up, even though it left him woozy and needing some serious mind-over-matter to work through the pain. ”I appreciate what you’re trying to do, really, and maybe I didn’t know what I was getting into at first, even a couple weeks ago.”

He struggled to continue for a second, memories flooding back, but pushed forward ”But...look, I’m pretty sure you’ve seen the video even though I don’t know how much of it got edited out. You know, that one where I ‘took down the bad guy’ that went viral? But see, I’d already spent hours strapped to a chair while being battered and fried like a...I dunno, I can’t eat fast food. The point is...somewhere between what I’m guessing was the first and second hour of torture, I decided that even if this was a game or something at first, that I’d never be able to just sit around while anything that bad happened to somebody else again.”

Connor took a deep breath, letting the memories of torture and the intensity of confronting one of his heroes fade, trying to stop the shakes that had suddenly started. ”So you’re right, I can’t solve all the issues, and eventually someone’s gonna take me down. But until that happens, I’m gonna solve every issue I can manage. With or without your approval.”

Roy ground his teeth together as Connor stood before him defiantly. Before he could explode in anger, the former sidekick turned around and walked back to the terminal setup near the monitors. He didn’t say a word, but the furious sound of his fingers tapping the keys and clicking the mouse were a clear enough sign that he was angry. In a matter of seconds, all of the files on Connor had disappeared and all the monitors showed a single prompt: INITIATE GOOD FRIDAY PROTOCOL. Roy hit enter, and a monotone voice filled the small section of cave the two were standing in. ”Voice Authorization Required”

Roy sighed, before confidently declaring, ”Speedy.”

A small buffering icon showed for a moment, and then all the monitors went black.

The monitors all then showed the same image: Oliver Queen, leaning against the same terminal Roy was standing over. He was wearing the outfit of the Green Arrow, but he wasn’t wearing a hood, hat, or mask. Ollie stared at the ground for a moment before turning his gaze up towards the camera. ”Well… I… I must admit, this is a first. If you’re watching this, then you know I’m not the type of guy who’s usually speechless.” Oliver gave a small chuckle to himself, one that almost made Roy join him. The Green Arrow quickly cleared his throat before his expression turned serious and he continued on. ”Well… to put it simply, if you’re watching this, then it means I’m… well, gone. I’m either missing, or dead, or I got drunk and lost my keys again halfway around the world. Regardless of what happened to me… it means that I’m not around to protect this city.”

Oliver shifted uncomfortably for a moment, taking a deep breath before continuing. ”As I take a moment to reflect… whoever it is that ends up watching this… you’re someone I must have hurt. Someone I abandoned when they needed me most. I… I’m not…” Roy’s expression softened slightly as he watched the man who had been his legal father for years start to choke up a little, before recomposing himself. ”I made a lot of mistakes. But putting on this costume wasn’t one of them. This city needs a hero… this whole flippin’ world needs heroes. And I know I don’t have the right to ask this… but if you’re watching this, then this city needs you to pick up my legacy. And I know that you can do it.” Oliver shuffled a little on screen and began to stand before the monitors cut to black again. After a few seconds, they came back online and all but one continued to display the information on Connor.

The one exception was the center, bottom screen just above the terminal. It was simply a folder with a file inside of it. Roy pulled a flash drive from his belt and plugged it into the terminal, quickly copying over the file. He turned back towards Connor with a surprisingly stoic expression. ”Well… you heard what he said.”

In contrast to Roy’s stoicism, Connor was openly crying. He hadn’t spoken up once through the video will, but It was the first time he’d ever seen his father outside of video for the news or photos in the paper or online, and the message hit hard. Even if it was indirect, it was the apology he’d never gotten and permission, even approval for everything he’d done all rolled into one.

He’d gladly have suffered a thousand more hours of Brick’s torture and Dark Archer beatings if he’d known this would be the result.

He ducked his face, then grinned at Roy once he was back under control, obviously embarrassed at the lapse. ”Well...thanks. So, does this make us brothers? Also uh, where do we go from here? ”

Roy’s expression hardened further, his teeth clenching slightly. ”We’re not brothers. He was never a father and barely a mentor.” He yanked the USB drive from the terminal and pocketed it, quickly tapping at the keys for a moment to reset the terminal. He turned around to face Connor, trying to remain professional. ”As for what happens next, Stanley can give you the proper tour of the place when you’ve rested a bit more. In the meantime…” Harper walked over next to the console, towards what appeared to be a blank metal wall with a single touchscreen security panel. Roy placed his palm on the scanner, and a section of the wall suddenly slid open to reveal a simple reinforced outfit resembling Green Arrow’s. ”Oliver always wanted me to follow in his footsteps, but I think I’m going to take my own path. The suit and the name… they’re yours now.”

Ordinarily Connor would’ve felt crushed by Roy’s rejection, but the hugeness of the situation and his sheer excitement and gratitude overwhelmed all of that quick enough. ”I...I don’t know what to say. Thank you, Roy. I’m sure it’s weird considering I just got pincushioned and beaten unconscious earlier, but this is the best day of my life! I promise, I’ll always do my best to honor your trust!” He paused, reflecting on Roy’s general attitude ”Or at least your grudging acceptance, it still means a lot...also we have a butler?”

Roy gave a sideways look, his teeth grinding a bit harder at the last statement. ”Stanley is going to be the one keeping an eye on you. He knows you’re Ollie’s spawn, and has agreed to educate you and clean you up when you get bruised and bloody.” The scarlet archer turned around and placed a hand on Connor’s shoulder, trying to lead him back to the couch. ”He’s the one who bandaged and stitched you up, and I imagine he’ll be doing that a lot from here on out. If you really are going to follow in our footsteps, you’re going to have to get used to getting knocked down. It comes with the job. But, before you can go out to get your ass kicked again, you need to lie down and relax. I can watch over the city for tonight.”

Connor was honestly too weakened to resist Roy’s attempt to steer him back over and sit him down. Besides, for all of Roy’s protests, the gesture and reassurances both still felt oddly familial to the younger archer. ”Well...fine. I heal fast though, so just for tonight! He flopped back on the couch and tried to seem unconcerned even as a chorus of bruises made him wince.

Roy gave a slight nod as he turned around to leave behind the new Arrow, rounding the corner out of the room and noticing Stanley waiting for him. The old butler gave his former charge a smug smile, before speaking just loud enough for Roy to hear. ”If I didn’t know any better, that sounded an awful lot like the mature thing to say to the boy.”

”This was a one time thing, Stanley. Besides, I needed to come back and grab some of my old stuff.”

Stanley’s wry smile grew. ”I always knew you’d start working again, Speedy.”

Roy sighed, rolling his eyes a little. ”I’m not Speedy anymore, and this is a one time thing. SHIELD is calling in a favor because I needed one from them. Once that’s over, I’m done again. Then I can go squander my money like Ollie would have.”

The young vigilante tried to walk past Stanley, who simply grabbed on to his arm to hold him back a moment. ”Are you sure we shouldn’t tell him about the ‘Dark Archer’ fellow?”

Roy pulled his arm gently out of Stanley’s grip, before giving him a swift hug. ”The kid idolizes Oliver. He doesn’t need the truth yet. We can figure out what to do when I get back from DC..” He pulled himself out of the embrace, giving his real father figure a gentle squeeze on the shoulder before walking farther down the neat cave complex.

Stanley gave Roy a concerned look. ”I know it’s been a while, sir, but you do know that the elevator to the estate is the other way, don’t you?”

”I’m borrowing the jet, Stanley. Can’t let that thing rust while Oliver is gone.”

Hydra Facility, Argentina - Present Day
Issue 1.04.4: Battleground

Interaction(s): None

Black Widow gave Agent Carter a brief nod as she finished sticking the adhesive of the “Welcome Party” device, which didn’t appear to be more than a metal cylinder sticking out from the door frame. Agent Carter was finishing up setting a small receiver into the foam explosive that had been sprayed over the hinges of the metal door leading into the security room. The two agents began stepping back behind a line of SHIELD operatives that had their rifles at the ready. Romanoff began tapping away at her wrist computer to sync things up. ”I heard about what happened in London. I’m sure it was a hard choice.”

Sharon was caught off guard as she tilted her head, taking a moment to process her partner’s sudden concern. ”It’s the job.” Carter fetched a small detonator from her utility belt. ”We do what we have to in order to keep people safe.”

Natasha raised an eyebrow. ”Great, I am surrounded by patriots and pencil-pushers. I might as well go back home to Moscow for some excitement.” She tapped a button, and the sound of a thermite charge could be heard cutting through the security office.

Carter shrugged. ”I’d hate to see you go. I was just starting to like you.” Sharon gave a cheeky grin as the repeated sound of compressed air firing cluster grenades into the office, followed by a cacophony of explosions and screams. Natasha rolled her eyes as Sharon detonated the foam explosive and the hinges were blown out. With a terrifying metallic screech, the door fell to the ground with a thud. The inside of the office was completely spattered with blood.

”Control room secured. It’s your turn, boys.”

”It’ll take us a minute.”

Cap spat out a little bit of blood as he rose to his feet. The mountain of a soldier began slowly shuffling towards Rogers with a large wrench in his hands. He was making his way down one of the aisles of the boiler room, with the door to the generator room standing behind him. Captain Rogers lifted up his fists, giving a cocky smile. ”What’s the matter? Getting sleepy?”

The HYDRA engineer lifted his wrench into the air to take a swing at Steve, but was interrupted as Masters quickly rushed in with Cap’s shield. Tony threw his weight behind the shield to force the engineer to crash into a large console. Tony quickly tossed the shield towards Steve, who was able to catch it on the rim and use both hands to swing it directly into the engineer’s ribcage. He cried out in pain and swung a fist towards Rogers, but Cap was able to sidestep it with ease. Masters delivered a few blows at the engineer, but without much progress. The engineer turned his gaze towards Masters, lifted his fists up. Two quick strikes to the abdomen. Use the distraction to deliver a palm strike…

The sound of a gunshot rang out, echoing along the walls. The HYDRA engineer crumbled to the floor. Cap turned around to see Fury holstering his revolver. Masters wiped the blood off his face, shaking his head. ”I had that under control.”

Fury rolled his eye. ”I’m sure you did, Masters. Now why don’t you ballerinas start heading down towards the lab. I can handle things from here.”

Natasha and Sharon were waiting in the elevator as Cap and Tony jogged in to meet them. It was an old service elevator, and a decent enough contingent of SHIELD operatives were surrounding the four officers. The elevator began slowly grinding down towards the bottom level. ”What took you guys so long? We could have brought Zemo to you if we knew it would take so long.”

Cap rolled his eyes. ”He’ll be locked up in time for us to get back home and watch some Wheel of Fortune, so don’t you worry Nat.”

The elevator was nearing the bottom floor when it suddenly jerked to a halt, and the service lights cut out. Carter sighed. ”Right… cutting emergency power. Guess we’ll have to take the stairs down the last few flights. Steve, can you give me a lift?” Carter automatically made her way towards the emergency opening in the top of the caged elevator, motioning for Steve to help hoist her up. He grabbed her by the hips and lifted her up with ease, and then helped Natasha and Tony.

They all stood on the grid-like metal roof of the elevator. Tony and Natasha managed to pry the elevator doors open enough that they could walk back into the facility with Carter close in tow. Steve had managed to vertically jump out of the elevator and on to the roof and begin walking towards the open doors when two sensations overwhelmed his senses: the roar of an explosion up above, and the lack of a floor beneath his feet. The other three watched in horror as the ceiling of the elevator shaft had erupted into a fiery inferno, with the cable lines snapping immediately.

Cap and the elevator fell about three stories before they crashed against the concrete flooring. One of the heavy cables slammed and crushed the elevator cage directly next to Steve’s head, forcing him to roll to the side instinctively and avoid another cable that certainly would have crushed him. By the time the dust had settled, Steve heard a voice come in over the comms channel. ”Sit tight, Steve. We’re heading to the stairwell, we’ll meet you at-“

Steve heard another explosion above him, this time more muffled, and then heard nothing further. The comms were simply static for a moment, forcing Cap to his feet to examine the elevator shaft. The door to the final sublevel was right next to him, and was probably Steve’s best bet for finding a stairwell to go find his friends. The Captain ripped open the metal doors leading out into the complex with the tips of his fingers, surprised to find no Hydra forces waiting for him. This sublevel looked surprisingly simplistic, with stark white floors and walls. There were high-tech computers along the walls, and work stations and labs were clearly visible through reinforced glass doors and windows. It looked too much like a SHIELD facility for comfort.

As Steve pushed farther down the sterile hallway, all the monitors suddenly flashed live, and all broadcast a sight that made his stomach turn. A man in a business suit and wearing a pink cloth mask gestured in the direction of the camera, and Cap could tell that he was smiling without having to see his face. ”Ahhh, Captain America. You know, I was hoping to meet you in ‘42 so that I could atomize you before you killed my father. But perhaps this is an opportunity in disguise. After all, I get the glorious opportunity the HYDRA council never got: I get to kill your friends, then you, and then I can travel back in time to kill you and your friends all over again. So what are you waiting for, Captain?.”

Hydra Facility, Argentina - Present Day
Issue 1.04.5: From Here to Eternity

Interaction(s): None
Previously: Up Above

Steve’s feet pounded against the sterile hallways as he charged towards the lab. All the monitors showed the device was still warming up: the lab clearly had its own generators. Worst of all, Steve was alone. Zemo would have dozens of guards protecting him and the machine. But there was only one thought that surged through Steve’s mind with each pounding step: vengeance. Vengeance for Natasha and Tony. Vengeance for Sharon. Vengeance for Peggy, and Isaiah, and Hogan. Vengeance for Diana and Billy. HYDRA had hurt so many people that Steve had come to cherish. And that all ended today.

It took Steve less than a minute to weave through the complex tunnel system and towards the open doors of the lab. Standing there, waiting for him, was Zemo standing all alone in the middle of the large lab space. Steve knew it was too easy. But his anger boiled over into his arms, and the Captain jumped into the air to spin around and launch his shield with all his might at Helmut. Zemo instinctively ducked and held out his hand. As the shield flew over Helmut’s head and Cap was able to land on his feet, a large broadsword flew from the corner of the lab and into the HYDRA officer’s grasp as he rose to his feet. Cap clenched his fist, and his shield was able to rush back to his arm.

Behind Zemo, the contraption seemed to be warming up. Rina had various IV’s and wires connected to her, though she appeared to be so far drugged out at the moment it was a miracle she was standing. Helmut noticed where his nemesis’ eyes were glancing, and clutched his broadsword with both hands. ”This is the beginning of your end, Captain America. In mere moments, I will be able to stop you before you even got that serum in your veins. Your name will be forgotten, while the name of Zemo is one that makes the world leaders tremble in fear.”

Captain grit his teeth and readjusted the grip on his shield. ”Your grandfather took everything away from me the first time, Helmut. It’s time I return the favor through you.” Steve quickly rocketed the shield forward towards Zemo, who was able to lift his sword up just in time. The shield ricocheted into the as Steve continued rushing forward. Zemo delivered one swing towards Rogers’ chest, but the Captain was one step ahead. He ducked into a slide at the last second, lifting up a hand to grab onto Helmut’s leg and pull him to the ground. Zemo slammed into the ground as Steve quickly began to crawl on top of Helmut to deliver a beatdown.

Zemo had a trick up his sleeve. His left hand slipped from his blade and to his utility belt, giving him just enough time to pull a small bead. He slammed it into the ground before rolling a foot away from Steve. Cap’s knee pressed down over the spot the bead had been but a moment later. When he attempted to lift his knee up to get closer to his ally, Steve found his knee was completely immobile. Zemo smiled as he rose slowly to his feet, walking over to pick up his sword. ”I didn’t think you’d forget about my grandfather’s special compound. He designed it just for you. It’s fitting it should lead to your death.”

Zemo lifted his sword up and swung it towards Cap’s head, only to watch as the shield flew past Helmut’s blade at the last second to mount back on the Captain’s wrist to intercept the blow. The sword bounced wide, leaving Cap an opening to launch the shield the small distance towards his nemesis’ chest before it returned automatically to his wrist. Helmut was stunned by the sudden force, and his cloth mask began to change colors near the mouth from a light pink to a deeper shade of darker red. Steve cracked a small smile. ”I can do this all day, Zemo.”

As if on cue, the gateway of the Tinkerer’s contraption began to glow with an opaque bright green energy. Rina, who was once sedated, seemed to jolt awake. She struggled against her restraints, screaming in extreme pain. Zemo gave a small smile as he rushed up to his feet and began charging towards the portal. Steve turned his gaze towards the machine. He didn’t have long to come to a decision on what to do. He quickly looked at the machine. There wasn’t any exposed wiring, and there wasn’t anywhere instinctively noticeable as a kill switch. He had only one choice on what to do.

Steve threw his shield directly towards the cage in which Rina was caught. The shield spun vertically, seeming to cut directly towards the mutant’s chest. Her eyes widened in fear as the vibranium disk barely slipped in between the steel bars. At the last possible second, it cut left and slice through the various cables and wires hooked up to the Initiative Agent. Immediately, a bright flash of light filled the room that blinded both individuals. After a few moments, Steve’s vision had returned. Helmut turned his gaze back towards Cap, and the undeniable look of panic was evident.

Steve quickly pulled a small bottle from his belt and gave his knee a quick spritz. After a brief moment, Cap rose up to his feet and looked at Helmut. The villain’s eyes shifted from fear to pure rage. The villain reached into his suit coat and pulled out a rather high-tech sidearm. He pointed it towards his nemesis, his hands shaking slightly. ”I’ve dedicated my entire life to this, and I’m not going to let you ruin my plans now. You die today, Captain America!”

Steve saw a brief blur of movement out of the corner of his eye. His heart sunk as he began to understand the situation. His body felt like it was moving in molasses. Zemo pressed the trigger, and a beam of light shot out of the gun and towards Rogers. But before it could impact against him, Agent Carter dove forward in front of the Captain. Steve reached out for her, but it was too late. The beam of light impacted against her and began to envelop her. In what felt like an eternity, Steve watched in horror as she began to disappear atom by atom. He stumbled forward clutching at his companion, but there wasn’t even dust left. Steve looked at his empty hands in complete shock for a moment, before his eyes zeroed in on Zemo. The fear was back in the HYDRA agent’s eyes. He quickly reached into his jacket to reload his disintegrator.

Zemo stumbled backwards, clutching at the hole in his jacket. His hands were then wet with blood. Steve held his sidearm pointed directly at Zemo. His finger squeezed the trigger again. And again. And again. The Captain lost track of the number of bullets, and hadn’t realized that the clip was empty until Romanoff was pulling the gun from his grip and waving her hand before his eyes. Rogers was suddenly aware of the sound of pounding blood in his ears. His eyes began to readjust to the scene. SHIELD operatives were carrying away the corpses of Rina and Helmut. Other agents were busy examining the scene. Colonel Fury placed an arm around Steve’s shoulder, and was steering him towards the lab’s exit. But Steve couldn’t hear a single word.

Sharon Carter was dead. But her vengeance had just begun.

San Francisco - Present Day
Issue 1.01.04: Paradise City

Interaction(s): None

Roy straightened his tie as he sat in a booth in the back of the Club Fenris. He was dressed in a sharp Italian suit, and sitting next to him was Grace in a sleek and simple red dress. Her hair was let loose cascading along her shoulders and back. They both raised an eyebrow at each other as they waited. It had been a half hour of waiting so far, which did not bode well. Just as Roy was about to stand up to leave, a voice rang out. ”Mr. Harper, I so do apologize for the delay.”

From around the corner, a man in a gaudy rainbow suit with bleach blonde hair strode up to the booth and gave a wicked smile. Flanking him were two rather large men in black t-shirts and jeans, very clearly bouncer types. Roy placed a hand on the briefcase on the seat next to him instinctively, while reaching over with his right to shake the man’s hand. ”I take it you are the owner here, sir?”

The stranger simply shook his head while returning the handshake. ”I’m not the owner, no. I’m an… entrepreneur. And the rumor on the street is that you’re looking for something to buy.”

Roy gave a nod, giving Grace a sideways look. ”Well… I heard that this is the best place to score some powered protection.” He gave a small smile before continuing. ”With all the shit going down in the world, it wouldn’t hurt to have some 21st Century protection.”

The host was silent for a moment before he himself flashed a smile and laughed. ”Of course, of course. I keep my own around.” He laughed a little too hard before slamming a hand on the table, turning his gaze towards his new buyer. Roy instinctively tightened the grip on his briefcase. After a brief moment, the host started laughing. The two guests nervously joined him. After a moment, the host motioned for the others to follow as he began walking towards the back of the club.

After going through a security door and passing by what seemed like a small battalion of mutant bodyguards, the host had finally led the duo into what seemed like an impossibly large underground bunker. Armed guards in black and red uniforms patrolled around the makeshift facility, holding high-tech rifles that Roy had seen specs for in the SHIELD database. If he could remember correctly, they were called “ICER” rifles. Unfortunately, that wasn’t what was important. In the massive warehouse, individual containment units held a plethora of strange individuals. The host gave a smile and motioned towards the rows upon rows of elaborate cages. ”Welcome to our little Mutie Market, Mr. Harper. We’re having a special right now: buy one, get one half price. Each of them comes chipped so you can track them if they get out… and the chips come with a micro-bomb in case they become too unruly.”

Grace’s hands clenched into fists at the non-chalant nature of the host’s claims. Roy could tell that he didn’t have long to keep her contained. Roy placed a hand on her shoulder reassuringly to ease her tensions for now. Roy simply gave a nod. ”Do you mind if I take a closer look?”

The host simply smiled and motioned for him to go ahead. Roy and Grace both made their way closer to the containment units. Roy gave Grace a knowing look as they walked the aisles, with the mutants shying away slightly at their new potential “owners.” The partners shared a nod, and they kicked into action. Roy started by quickly reaching into his inner coat pocket and pulling out a small box. He pressed the side of the box, and a bright light flashed from it. The power immediately cut out, even the emergency lights in this underground warehouse. Roy deftly opened up the briefcase, pulling out two sets of goggles. Once on, the two found they could see in the pitch black to see the doors to the containment units opened… and that the armed guards apparently had night-vision goggles as well.

Grace kicked the briefcase to safety between two of the containment units as a hail of bullets began firing in their direction. Roy dove to meet the briefcase while Grace lifted up her wrists, deflecting a few bullets with her wrist bracelets as she rushed towards a few of the guards. While she pummeled them into a pulp and tossed them aside, Roy smiled as he looked at his functioning gadgets. He slammed his wrists swiftly into two metal bracelets that glowed red as soon as they snapped on. He then fetched the last two weapons before looking back towards Grace. She had easily dispatched her brief adversaries, and was dragging one guard in each hand in his direction. She rested the corpses on the ground and held her hand out expectantly. Roy handed her a collapsible sword, which she quickly flicked out to continue her reign of terror.

Roy slotted his own sword onto his belt before grabbing the rifle and spare magazines off of the guards Grace had been kind enough to fetch for him. As much as he hated to admit it, there was a certain thrill to this. His movements were textbook as he raised the rifle up and peered around the corner, able to use only a single ICER round to take down each and every guard that came in his path. All his actions felt automatic, as if he were just on auto-pilot or some sort of drone. His SHIELD training seemed to have stuck. When his rifle ran out of rounds, he switched to his gauntlets, which fired off small shock rounds of their own. When that emptied out, Roy drew his sword to cut down anyone who stood in his path.

The longer the fight seemed to drag on, the more the mutants began to get involved. Arcs of energy, flame, and lightning briefly illuminated the dark warehouse. The fight lasted for about a half hour, before every single guard and hostile mutant was taken down by the vigilantes and those who were newly freed and willing to fight. Once the dust had settled, Grace approached Roy. Her hands were spattered in blood, but she gave her partner in crime a huge hug. ”Thank you. I know a place by the river front, but they’re going to need more permanent settlement. You said you might know someone who could help?”

Roy gave a small nod, grimacing slightly. ”Yeah… I can give him a call.” He began to walk towards the exit, wiping his bloody sword on his pants leg to clean it off, before giving a smile. ”You owe me for this, Grace. How about-“

”Not in a million years.”

Roy gave an awkward nod at this, before shrugging his shoulders and making his way towards the exit. ”It was worth a shot.”

The Greatest Damn Place on Earth - Present Day
Issue 1.01.05: Estranged

Interaction(s): None
Previously: Look above you Asshat

”You have millions of dollars at your disposal, and you insist on conducting business transactions in Steve’s Spud Sanctuary?”

Roy pointed his knife accusingly at Agent Coulson, his mouth stuffed full of potato, cheese, sour cream, and chives. He took a moment to swallow it all down. ”This place is a goddamn treasure.”

Phil gave a chuckle and shook his head, slowly cutting into his loaded baked potato slowly. ”Look, Roy… I get you called me here for a reason. How can I help?”

Roy shook his head, setting his utensils down and lifting the napkin up to wipe the crumbs from his lips. ”Alright, fine. I’ll cut to the chase. I’ve got about fifty mutants sitting in a warehouse that need refuge, and the guards were wearing this on their jackets.” He pulled out his cell phone and slid it across the table. A green HYDRA patch was displayed clearly on the screen, and Coulson’s grip on his utensils tightened. Roy gave a nod at this reaction. ”So SHIELD knows who these guys are.”

Coulson leaned back in his chair, setting his napkin down on the table. ”This is new, I’ll admit. The coloring is wrong, but I’m familiar with the symbol. They’re the same ones who attacked the Helicarrier.”

Roy’s jaw tightened as he leaned over to grab his phone again. ”First attacking the Helicarrier, now trafficking mutants? I don’t get it.”

Coulson shrugged, giving a small smile. ”Well, why don’t you come find out. We pulled a bunch of their tech during a raid on one of their compounds, and I could use someone with the right security clearance to give their tech a once over.”

Roy tilted his head slightly, pondering the decision for a moment before nodding. ”Ok. If you give me access to your database and get those mutants somewhere safe, I can do some consulting work for you and the boys at the lab. I just have something I need to check out first, and I need a ride to Star City?”

”This wouldn’t have to do with that video of this new Green-“

”That’s none of your damn business, Phil. Just shut up and drive.”
The Webby's

  • @Hillan with the Reverse Flash
    • One of the weirdest character concepts in the early game, but one that I could tell would be fascinating to watch from the beginning. Thawne being the primary Flash in this universe adds an interesting multiversal flavor, while also giving the mainstay hero a fresh twist.

  • @Bounce with The Return of Captain Marvel
    • This post I think was one of the most informative for the character of Captain Marvel, and managed to balance both serious in-universe (and generally historical issues) with the lighthearted feel of your take on Captain Marvel with Billy Batson. It also has significant relevance to the connected world, as well as some of the older characters.

  • @ComradeMaxx for the Bayville High Arc
    • I would totally be lying if part of what made this arc memorable was Maxx's own allusion to Cap's role within the Howling Commandos. What made this arc so incredibly remarkable in my mind, however, was the way in which Maxx was able to balance between various characters, while also telling an engaging story involving just an ordinary mutant. It had all the hallmarks of a good X-Men story, while introducing us to this unique concept. A fantastic start to what will certainly be a very engaging, overarching narrative.

  • @Lord Wraith with the Mad Hatter
    • While we haven't seen much, I believe in a single post Wraith managed to set the stakes for the Mad Hatter. I am so excited to see Terry face off with the lunatic. Also reminds us that even temporary antagonists can leave a major impact on both a character's story and in building the world in which the characters interact.

  • @Hound55 for Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle
    • Every single Blue Beetle post has been remarkable in the way it informs the world of Ted's narrative. I've been excited to read every post, even if it's just Ted taking a shower or talking to his business partners. Your inclusion of Hank Pym as Ant-Man just makes the posts and stories all the more captivating. I honestly can't form into words how much I've enjoyed Ted Kord's presence in this world.

  • @Stein with Baal
    • Given how little I know about the source material, I wasn't particularly certain of Baal in the initial character proposal. As soon as I read the sample post, I was hooked and I am so excited to see how Baal fits into the universe as a whole. Electrifying start to such an interesting character.

  • @Retired
    • Retired has already left a mark on this RP, despite being one of the newest additions to this thread in particular. Retired has taken so much time and effort to read through the IC and give thorough reviews for those who have requested one, and has been a tremendous force in this community.

Decided to keep things short, for the most part. I haven't been able to make decisions on all of the potential awards, and most people are a Runner up for each award. I wanted to take this time to shout out stories that I haven't expressed my appreciation for quite enough. I've really loved writing with y'all this season, and I'm looking forward to the next season.

Bum-Fuck Nowhere, Kansas? - One Month Ago
Issue 1.01.03: Welcome to the Jungle

Interaction(s): None

”Right… let me get this straight, Grace… so you’re like an actual Amazon. With superhuman strength and shit. Born in a society of warrior women. With the Greek gods. And you came to rural America…”

Roy raised an eyebrow in amusement as he sipped on his bottled water among the wreckage of the gas station store. His savior leaned against the counter, just finishing off her beer. She wiped her mouth with her bare wrist. ”You were a rich brat who went around with some stranger shooting bad guys with a bow and arrow wearing some kind of BDSM Ren Faire outfit, but my story raises red flags. Look, I got taken from my home a long time ago, and I’m not exactly allowed to go back apparently. So here I am, saving little punks like you.”

”Hey, I was building military grade weapons before I got my first erection, asshat. I had the situation perfectly under control before you showed up.” Roy finished his water and tossed it aside, before bending down to pick up a popped bag of chips to begin scouring through what was left in it.

Grace rolled her eyes. ”What brings you to the American heartland killing Watchdogs?”

Roy held up a finger as a polite way to ask her to wait as he tilted his head back and poured the chip crumbs into his open mouth. He quickly chewed through the crumbs and swallowed before speaking, seeming to have no shame in eating what could only be described as ground chips from explosive debris. ”I had a close friend that I worked with. She tried to visit some family in New Jersey, and the Watchdogs apparently hunted her down and killed her. Wheeler was responsible. Happened while I was in a coma for a few months.” Roy reached into his back pocket and pulled out a non-descript smart phone, and began tapping away on it. In mere seconds, the screen lit up and projected a holographic display, showing off files on Wheeler and the Watchdogs. ”Spent about two weeks going through all the files I could on these guys before I signed my discharge papers. They were willing to drop me off anywhere, so they dropped me off at the Church. I snuck in the back, subdued the priest, put on the disguise, and stole a few weapons they had in the back.”

”Did your plan also involve you getting blown up by their little team of avengers?”

Roy gave a small smile. ”Well, the Watchdogs had two documented leaders and a group of lieutenants who just so happened to all be meeting in the area. Planned things out so I could take down their organizational structure in a single day. Piece of cake.”

Grace simply nodded her head slowly, looking out over all the corpses. ”You know, we should probably call someone about the bodies. Once we’re long gone.”

A small smirk formed on the edge of Roy’s lips. ”I never said anything about a ‘we.’”

”You’re right. You didn’t. But given your skill set, I could sure as hell use you as backup.”

Roy shook his head. ”This was it, Grace. This was my last job. I’m not going to keep doing this whole ‘avenger’ thing. I’m honestly just planning to just buy a farm or something and just live a nice and quiet life. I’m done.”

Grace gave a small smirk of her own, which quite frankly seemed more like an intimidating grimace than an attempt at being somewhat playful. ”You owe me a favor for saving your life. The least you can do is help me on this one quest.”

Roy opened his mouth to speak, before snapping it shut and just pointing an accusatory finger. He gave a small laugh to himself. ”Ok, if that’s the way you want to play it, fine. I’ll help you. But we do this on my terms, Choi.”

She simply shrugged as she turned her back to him to begin making her way back to her bike. ”Whatever you say, Speedy.”

Roy sighed, defeated. ”Damn it… I really need a new alias.”

Hydra Facility, Argentina - Present Day
Issue 1.04.3: Enemy at the Gates

Interaction(s): None

Zemo smiled at the large contraption in front of him, though of course none could see his expression under his cloth mask. HYDRA technicians were hard at work putting the finishing touches on a metal archway and the console next to it. It would be ready well within the hour, and then the testing could begin.

The crackling of the radio on Zemo’s belt surprised him momentarily. There were unintelligible sounds on the other end, and then the line went dead. Zemo lifted it to speak. ”Is there something to report?” Only silence responded. ”Radio check for the perimeter.”

”Squad one, checking in”

”Squad two, checking in.”

”Squad four, checking in.”

”I think my invite got lost in the mail, Helmut.”

An explosion rocked the facility and practically knocked Zemo off his feet. He reached out and caught himself on a stack of crates nearby, his eyes wide with fear. He recognized the voice. The voice of the man he had sworn revenge on. The man who had killed his grandfather. Captain America.

A barrage of bullets hailed in from large hole blasted into the metal hangar doors. Smoke and haze still obscured the entrance as HYDRA soldiers tried to duck behind cover to return fire, though many in the hangar were already lying in pools of their own blood. As the gunfire continued to be exchanged, a few figures began pushing into the entrance. The HYDRA soldiers turned their guns towards a particular red, white, and blue shield. The metal clangs filled the hangar with an echo as Captain America continued pushing forward. Behind him, SHIELD SWAT officers continued to exchange fire while doing their best to brush off the stray bullets impacting against their armor. One by one, the resisting HYDRA soldiers were joining their fallen brethren. After about a minute of exchanged gunfire, the defending forces began to retreat. The SHIELD operatives began fanning out to secure the room, and Captain Rogers’ fellow officers stormed in with reinforcements.

Fury immediately placed a small metal disk on a crate of ammunition next to an old German fighter plane. A blue holographic projection of the bunker they were in sprung to life, with red dots pinging around the various hallways. Fury began marking off hallways and routes, as well as marking a large room near the bottom of the facility. ”Given our intel from Mason, they’ll be going into lockdown procedure. That means we’ll need to divide and conquer. Romanoff and Carter, I need you down in sublevel E to override the security protocols. Use a Welcome Party to get in to the station. Once there, you’ll be able to open up the lab and Zemo’s panic room.”

Romanoff and Carter both shared a nod and began moving out, drawing their sidearms and regrouping with their respective teams as they began to delve deeper into the base. Fury turned his gaze back towards his two remaining officers. ”If Mason’s projections are right, then that machine will be ready within the hour. We need to cut the emergency power generators to make sure we get that thing offline, or at least buy us enough time to destroy that thing once and for all.” The two officers nodded and immediately began heading out.

Fury watched the majority of soldiers push farther into the base when a few SHIELD agents entered in from the entrance, with Agent Phil Coulson leading the pack. ”Corporal Fury, what are our orders?”

Fury turned around and gave a nod, motioning towards the hangar doors. ”Scan everything you can and begin planting the charges. We blow this place once my team and the device are secured. Best not to leave any loose ends, Coulson.”

20,000 ft. over the Pacific Ocean - Present Day
Issue 1.04.2: Allied

Interaction(s): None

Steve shook his head. ”This is clearly a trap.” He stood on one side of the mirrored glass, while Phineas Mason sat at a metal table in a high-tech detention room. In the corner were the appropriate bathroom facilities and a bed. Standing next to Steve and also monitoring Mason was Nick Fury, who had his arms folded.

Fury simply shrugged. ”Possibly. But this is the only lead we have, Captain. And he wants to talk to you specifically.”

Steve Rogers sighed and entered into the detainment cell. Phineas gave a small smile to Steve upon entering, and Rogers took the seat across from Mason. ”Let’s keep this simple, Mason. Where is Rina Patel?”

Phineas pursed his lips for a moment, seeming to weigh the options for a moment. ”I will explain... but first I want a deal.”

Rogers shook his head. ”You really think we’re going to give you a deal, ‘Tinkerer?’ This isn’t a negotiation.”

Mason nodded his head for a moment. ”I didn’t want to help them. One moment, I was in an SUV with a few SHIELD agents. Next thing I know, we’re upside down and everyone was dead. I was pulled into a different van, and I was given an ultimatum: build whatever they want or they would kill everyone I cared about.”

Rogers leaned back in his chair, folding his arms. ”Do you really expect me to believe that you care about anyone?”

”Even I have family, and I’m sure you understand how I can be of use to you. Who do you think made your outfit and gear? Who do you think can get you Zemo?”

Cap tilted his head slightly, leaning forward. ”Zemo died in forty-five the same day I went in the ice. You’re going to have to do better than that.”

Phineas gave a small smile. ”Zemo had a son. And then a grandson.” Steve remained silent, so the Tinkerer continued. ”Helmut has had me working on something that can undo everything you did in forty-five.”

”I’m not here for games. What are you talking about, Mason?”

The Tinkerer waited a moment for dramatic effect. ”HYDRA wants to use one of your former agents to stop you and the other heroes from winning your little war.”

Steve rolled his eyes and stood up, walking out of the room to leave Phineas alone. He entered back into the observation room, where Fury was standing there waiting. ”What do you think, Rogers?”

Cap shook his head while standing at attention while watching Mason through the glass. ”Well, sir, he’s a known criminal and liar. He’s responsible for the deaths of our agents, and he’s been working for HYDRA.” Cap stopped for a moment, hesitating before he continued on. ”That being said, Romanoff stated that he was compliant and seemed to be waiting for us to find him. And my gut says he’s telling the truth.”

Fury gave a nod. ”Then we pretend to make a deal with him. We give him his old job back for now until we get Patel and take down Zemo. Afterwards, we can throw him in a cell.”

Fury turned to quickly exit the observation room, but Steve stepped aside and held up a hand to stop his CO. ”As much as I think he deserves it, if Mason is telling the truth, then he deserves a legally binding agreement. He seemed to be just as much of a victim as our agents, and since when did we start throwing human dignity out the door?”

Fury tilted his head slightly in disbelief. ”Have you lost your damn mind, Captain Rogers? Let me remind you that I’m the motherfucker who gave the order to recover your frozen ass. Yet, ever since you joined this team you’ve questioned every decision I’ve made, Rogers. You’re on thin ice, Rogers. If you so much as think about subordination in this matter again I will personally make sure we drop you back in the ocean again so you can be someone’s else’s problem seventy years from now.” Colonel Fury stormed past Captain Rogers, leaving the veteran to watch Mason nervously fidgeting in the other room. Steve sighed and entered back into the detention room.
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