spin_kick_snap: (Contortionist: Spangles 02)
The drumbeat of the dead echoed across the lot like a relentless overseer on an ancient slave ship. Gorgon's confident smirk faded and even Stealth seemed shaken.

Below them, the exes parted to let the trucks drive up. Over a dozen of them, all spray-painted with different shades of green. Seventeens rode on the roof and hung out the windows. At the head of the parade, Rodney Cesares rode in the back of a National Guard truck decorated with skulls and a large neon-green 17 on the hood. They whooped and hollered and fired their guns into the sky.

And it continues... )

[NFI, NFB, OOC welcome. Preplayed by the masterful crew represented here, [livejournal.com profile] whoisalicewhite, [livejournal.com profile] tigerundercover/[livejournal.com profile] vdistinctive, [livejournal.com profile] rebelseekspizza, [livejournal.com profile] not_every_mage, and [livejournal.com profile] soniaroadsqueen. Bits of text adapted from Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines. Last of the posts for the day, though check out the comments for the last bit. Warning for NPC death]
spin_kick_snap: (Contortionist: Flips)
Stealth crouched on the arch about the Melrose gate with Gorgon, St. George, and the visitors. The other heroes had been dispatched to the other gates she'd marked as vulnerable on her map, but Zzzap was flying recon and they were backed up by almost fifty more of the Mount's guards. They were the most vulnerable gate, to be sure, with Gorgon standing up front as bait for Cesares, but she had estimated the capabilities of the assembled people would be more than capable of repelling an attack, even if Zzzap was not able to return to aid them.

The exes had always been thick here, but now they grew denser by the moment. They packed the space in front of the gate and pushed back into the streets. Hordes of them staggered down Melrose and up Windsor. The guards walked the walls and stared down at the hungry mob. Some of them manned scaffolding towers. The dead pounded and clawed at the stucco. Another fourteen gate guards rammed pikes and spears between the bars of the gate. The dead stiffened at their skulls cracked and their brains were shredded. Then the humans pulled their weapons free, stepped back, and then lunged at the gate again even as more exes staggered forward.

"When do you want us to start sweeping?" one of the men asked, his rifle tucked against his shoulder.

"This is not the attack," shouted Stealth. "Just a massing of forces. Conserve your ammunition for now. Pikes only!"

Another wave of crushed skulls echoed up to her.

Everything about this is fine. )

***


Zzzap flew through the air, lighting up the dark sky, and came to a hover above the arch where they were watching the crowd of exes grow. Something big and scaly at Van Ness. Thought you'd want to know, he said in his crackling, electronic voice.

"Damn it," St. George said, scanning the street. "How'd he get by us?" He looked at Stealth. "You all good here?"

"Go," she said. "And take Dante with you. Cairax Murrain cannot be allowed to breach the gate."

The big hero nodded and took off, with Dante close behind. "Demon's at Van Ness," said Gorgon as he watched them leave. "Not the best way for us to start, with you being wrong right at the top."

"Thank you for pointing that out," she said. Her cloak draped across her shoulders and down over the edge of the archway. "Can you see any further than four blocks under these conditions?"

Gorgon looked around. "Not really." Hid hand went to his mic. "All gates, let's get some flares up." Across the Mount, small comets shot into the sky and burst into stars. They could see for blocks now as red and yellow light bathed the surrounding neighborhood. Melrose was visible for a quarter mile past either end of the walls.

The walking dead kept coming. More and more, until the pavement vanished under a carpet of death. Thirty thousand dead eyes stared at them, and thirty thousand brittle hands clawed at the air. The exes pounded the walls, pushed at the steel fences, and rammed their arms between the gate's curling decorations. In the distance, they could hear engines roaring and horns blasting. The Seventeens were near.

Gorgon rolled his head in a circle until his neck popped. "Still feeling confident?"

"We are prepared," said Stealth. "We know their capabilities. It will be a challenge, but we are ready for whatever they have fight to fight us with."

And then the lights went out.

Again, everything is just great! )
spin_kick_snap: (Zombie 02 (Forlorn))
After Gorgon had hauled Josh away, Stealth had given the Fandom contingent very strict orders to stay put. The Mount was already a powder keg, the last thing it needed was an errant match in the form of a stranger that no one had seen enter and certainly didn't look like they'd spent the past nine months eking out a bare survival. Especially if any one of those strangers decided to mention the little bombshell Josh had dropped on them earlier.

Less than an hour had passed before Gorgon came to collect them, bringing them upstairs to Stealth's office. A meeting was still in progress, with a blueprint of the map hung up on the wall and the other superheroes clustered around it, Zzzap remaining a slight distance away to avoid charring paper or blistering flesh. "--walls are still secure, the fences are all reinforced, so the most likely attack points will be the Melrose Gate, Bronson, and North Gower."

"What about Van Ness or Marathon?" St. George asked.

"Too far east and north for a major assault," she said. "We can leave regular guard units there. If the Seventeens have done any reconnaissance of their own, they will know Marathon is sealed." She glanced up at Gorgon and nodded sharply to the chairs surrounding the large table. He gestured for their guests to sit.

"Bronson's sealed, too," Cerberus, the large mecha suit, pointed out.

"Sealed to regular exes. If they are being guided by Cesares, we must assume they will be smarter and more resourceful. It is the next closest gate after Melrose, the fence is low, and it is a very tempting target."

"I'd still like to see extra people at Van Ness," Gorgon said, slouching against a wall now that his tour guide duty was done.

"We're starting to run low on capable and trained people," Stealth said, her mask not facing him or any other hero, but the group at the table. "But it's possible that we have the means to make up the difference."

Jumping the gun a bit, eh Stealth? )

[NFI, NFB, OOC is love. Preplayed by [livejournal.com profile] whoisalicewhite, [livejournal.com profile] tigerundercover/[livejournal.com profile] vdistinctive, [livejournal.com profile] rebelseekspizza, [livejournal.com profile] not_every_mage, and [livejournal.com profile] soniaroadsqueen, all of whom I owe drinks to at this point. Bits of text adapted from Chapter Twenty-Four of Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines, ]
spin_kick_snap: (Zombie 02 (Forlorn))
Josh Garcetti checked on his latest patient, an appendicitis case. She'd come in on her own, he'd pulled out the offending organ, and now she was asleep. Her stitches were clean and tight, no seepage at all. He tried not to dwell on the fact that at one time, he could have repaired her without a single incision. Of course, lots of things had been different back then. The world had been alive, for one. So had Midknight and Cairax and Blockbuster and Banzai.

So had Meredith.

He made a few quick marks on her chart, then stepped out into the nurses' station and made another set of notes on the night log. Then he turned to the cabinets and found himself inches from Stealth. He stumbled back and the move yanked his withered hand out of its pocket. "Jesus," he snapped. "Do you have to pop out of nowhere like that?"

The cloaked woman said nothing.

Footsteps made him turn and St. George stepped in from the hallway. He was bare-chested and covered in bruises. "George," Josh said with a nod. "What happened to you? What the hell's going on?"

But George wasn't alone. Zzzap was with him, and Cerberus, and Gorgon, too, which was weird because Gorgon never came to see him. He suffered Josh's company only on Stealth's most stringent orders. And there were others as well, strangers. Or so he thought at first glance. But the two younger guys seemed familiar in a way that nagged at his memory and in the center of the group-- "Mystique?" he asked. "I thought you'd left to go find help after Banzai died."

"After you let her die," Gorgon spat. "While you were napping because you put her at the end of the fucking line and made her wait for hours."

Now he recognized the young men. They'd come to fetch Banzai home, back in the early days. She had refused and they'd fought and he'd left early, unable to take Nick's blatant jealousy and Max's smug amusement and his own guilt. "What are you all--" but Stealth interrupted him.

"When we were discussing the progression of the disease," she said, "you said you have had the virus hanging over you for almost a year. You were bitten eight months and six days ago."

He blinked twice, then a third time. "That all? Feels a hell of a lot longer. Sorry I don't have a computer-like mind like you." He shrugged and re-pocketed his dead hand. "Is that everything? Mr. Willis would love to get a few Vicodin so he can sleep."

Her feet shifted and she was between Josh and the cabinet. He sighed and pointed at a row of bottles. "Do you mind?"

"The first definite sighting of an ex-human," she continued, "was ten months ago. On March 9th, an unidentified woman assaulted a group of Seventeens in a parking lot. The attack which infected Rodney Cesares."

Josh shrugged again, but his eyes flitted between the two heroes and then back towards the tiny group of strangers. St. George realized his hands rolled themselves into fists.

Stealth still hadn't moved. She was tense but fluid. She was confident. "Your wife died almost a year ago, didn't she, Regenerator? Eleven months ago yesterday."

The doctor's glare shot past her, past Gorgon's stricken face and Zzzap's staticky buzz of shock. It landed on the three familiar faces in the crowd and he whispered. "I'm so sorry."

A little late for apologies )

[Content warning for mentions of previous, off-camera suicide attempts and attempted execution of an NPC. NFI, NFB, OOC welcome. Preplayed by the masterful crew represented here, [livejournal.com profile] whoisalicewhite, [livejournal.com profile] tigerundercover/[livejournal.com profile] vdistinctive, [livejournal.com profile] rebelseekspizza, [livejournal.com profile] not_every_mage, and [livejournal.com profile] soniaroadsqueen. Bits of text adapted from Chapter Twenty-Four of Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines]
spin_kick_snap: (Zombie 01 (Hungry))
The planned ambush of the Mount had been foiled, the Seventeens too impatient to wait until the gate had opened enough to let Mean Green out. The survivors had successfully routed the gangmembers, Gorgon dropping about half of the group before they'd gotten close. And, unbeknownst to most of the Mount, they'd even managed to collect three prisoners and were keeping them down in the holding cells by the Lansing Theater. In earlier years, the solid doors had held reels of archived film. Now the solid doors kept things in instead of out. Usually, these cells served as a holding pen for people who'd gotten drunk or rowdy, participants in the occasional fistfight or someone caught stealing. Now, however, they were holding prisoners of war.

Everything just keeps getting better )

[Content warning for attempted and completed suicide, though the act happens off-screen. Text taken from Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines, Chapters Twelve and Fourteen. NFI, NFB]
spin_kick_snap: (Zombie 02 (Forlorn))
After decontamination and quarantine, Gorgon headed over to Roddenberry, where Stealth had claimed the entirety of the executive fourth floor for herself. A lot of people had grumbled when she had, thinking it was some kind of status thing, but Gorgon knew better. It was central, with the best sight lines, and already wired for mass communication. Stealth had a lot more to worry about than her status among a bunch of survivors.

He rapped on a polished door and walked in. There was a large table people once sat at and discussed syndicated television shows and DVD box sets. Now all the chairs were gone and it was covered with maps and reports from across the lot. She'd moved over two dozen screens into the room, showing every street and every entrance to the Mount. Gorgon wandered over to look at them; there were far fewer people out than normal, even taking into account that it was winter.

Of course, winter in LA still meant 60 degrees, so that wasn't saying much at all. )

[NFI, NFB, OOC is love. Bits taken from Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines, Chapter Nine]
spin_kick_snap: (Zombie 01 (Hungry))
"Whaddaya think the odds are that anyone's still alive in there?" Luke Reid asked, nodding to an old, blocky synagogue across the street. On one wall, words were painted in what looked like old whitewash or something:

Alive inside. Running out of food. Please help!

Read more... )

"When we're out of here, it's time for a talk," St. George warned Gorgon, advancing on the final ex.

"A heart to heart?" Gorgon said. "I'm flattered."

"Not with me," George said, ending the fight with a punch to the ex's temple. "With Stealth."

Well, shit.

[NFB, NFI, OOC is always appreciated. Canon-typical violence against the undead, including a zombie kid. Once again, I've written too much, but the fight scene mostly adapted from Peter Clines' Ex-Isle, Chapter Twelve, "Point of View"]
spin_kick_snap: (Zombie 02 (Forlorn))
That was Kathy.

Gorgon hunched a little further in his duster, adjusting the collar once more so that it covered his ears from the wind. December in Los Angeles had nothing on December in Baltimore for miserable weather, but this morning had dawned cold and drizzly and the tall, empty buildings were acting like the world's most ex-infested wind tunnels. He paused for a second and then revised that thought. Undoubtedly, there were actual wind tunnels filled with exes at this point. Unless the wind knocked 'em all down and out of the tunnel entirely? He imagined the exes getting scattered like bowling pins and nearly smiled--

I wonder if she's cold. Because that was Kathy.

Have some canon )

After being on edge and uncertain for a few months, some people couldn't deal with the idea of being safe or being told what to do. Sometimes they freaked out. A few of the freakouts were small, but most were like this guy--loud and convinced they could do something about it. What they often forgot was that the Mount had superheroes. And even if Gorgon didn't have the build of, say, George or Josh, he didn't need to rely on fists to take someone down. With a few leaping strides, he got ahead of the guy. Immediately, the guy raised his fists, ready to swing--and then Gorgon opened his goggles wide. The guy stood there a moment. Then his legs wobbled and he sagged. He dropped to his knees in front of Gorgon, still trapped by the hero's gaze. Strength poured out of the guy and into Gorgon, buoying him up tier after tier. His eyes watered and he started to shake and it wasn't until Cerberus said, "I think you got him," that Gorgon let the goggles snap shut. The gy toppled over. He'd be waking up with a miserable headache, if the energy thrumming through Gorgon's body was any indication.

The guards rushed over, dragging the guy towards the quarantine tent. Being unconscious didn't get you out of an exam, it just made the exam a lot more thorough. And this guy had just gotten bumped to the head of the line. "Stupid," Gorgon said, more to himself than Cerberus. "They should have been expecting something like that."

She answered anyway. "Probably. But what do you want? Most of these guys aren't military or police." The big helmet head moved side to side. "Hell, we're lucky when we can find a mall security guard."

"Well, they better find someone to put in charge," Gorgon said, shifting into his gunslinger pose while the rest of the group followed meekly after the unconscious guy. "Things are going to get ugly in here fast if it keeps going like this." They were almost at four thousand people inside the Mount now. It was impossible to have that many people living together in peace. "Stealth had better assign someone to keep the peace if she doesn't want this place descending into anarchy."

"Maybe you should mention that to her," Cerberus said.

"Maybe I will," Gorgon replied. "Do me a favor and keep an eye on Sleeping Beauty there, will you? After waking up in his underwear sitting funny, he'll probably keep his head down, but just in case..."

"Where are you going?"

Gorgon jerked his thumb towards the main gate. "Out," he said, loosening his shoulders. "I'm at Tier Four right now. No sense wasting it when I can sweep for more survivors."

And maybe investigate an ex in white while he was at it.

[Much of the text taken (and folded and spindled) from "Point of View", Chapter Twelve of Peter Clines' Ex-Isle. No warnings except for length and navel-gazing. Have some day-to-day on the Mount. NFB, NFI, OOC is love]
spin_kick_snap: (Headboard)
Hours had passed and there was still no sign of Regenerator. One of the National Guardswomen said that she thought she'd heard that he's been transported somewhere else, another said that there had been an outbreak on one of the upper floors and that the hero was dealing with that. Hearing that bit of rumor, Kathy'd tried to get out of bed and go help out, but her legs had crumpled under her and she'd ended up sprawled on the floor. Raven had helped her back into bed and one of the volunteer nurses had shooed the Guards away. They could speculate somewhere else, where a hero with more heart than sense couldn't overhear. So long as they got Regenerator here immediately whenever he showed back up, they could go be useless anywhere else.

The convulsions were getting worse. Of everything, that was the most frightening thing to watch. Her fever was spiking; sometimes burning so hot that they could feel the heat radiating off her skin. They gave her drugs to bring her fever down, drugs to help with the pain, but she kept blazing through them. They'd given her seven doses in a matter of hours and it barely seemed to dent. She was sleeping now, fitful and restless, often moaning in pain.

Most of the recent bite victims made it to about twelve to fourteen hours before they succumbed to the virus and turned. Kathy didn't look like she was going to make it to eight.

Who lives, who dies, who tells your story... )

[WARNING FOR CHARACTER DEATH. NFB, NFI, OOC is just going to involve me ugly sobbing, so there's that. Preplayed with the magnificent [livejournal.com profile] tigerundercover, who along with [livejournal.com profile] rebelseekspizza and [livejournal.com profile] not_every_mage have been my goddamn ROCK, both ICly and OOCly. Thank you so much for being with me through this, I couldn't have done it without you and certainly not as stylishly.]
spin_kick_snap: (Banzai (Psylocke))
Banzai looked around, eyebrows practically up to her hairline. Gorgon hadn't been kidding when he'd said that Stealth had called in every hero in LA for this meeting. Most, she recognized, by reputation if not by sight. Midknight was the man in the replica armor who could bring a crushing darkness no light could penetrate and a cold that could give frostbite. Blockbuster, who could knock down entire buildings with enough momentum. The Mighty Dragon, of course. Gorgon. Regenerator, looking drawn and exhausted. About nine or ten others she was able to put names to. There were others she didn't know, like the black guy in the wheelchair and the scrawny guy wearing a giant necklace. At first, Banzai had thought that he was wearing a clock on his chest, like some oily, white Flava-Flav, but closer inspection proved it to be--some kind of medallion? Either way, it was hard to look at properly, like staring into the sun.

And then their host, the woman who could only be Stealth. She was sitting at the head of the water-stained conference table, conferring with the guy in the chair. The guy looked very grave; Stealth's mask gave no clue what she was feeling. Kathy's hope that this was going to be some kind of committee meeting where they decided to create the Super Justice Pals of LA withered and died at the guy's expression. No one looked like that without a damn good reason.

At precisely 11, Stealth broke off her conversation and stood up. "Thank you for attending," she said in a crisp, no-nonsense voice. "I can imagine it was difficult for some of you to take leave for superhero business during regular civilian hours. I assure you, I would never make such a request lightly. The situation is urgent. If not responded to quickly, it will be dire. It is possible that I miscalculated by waiting the additional week to contact you. Please be seated and we can begin the briefing."

Stealth remained standing, the guy she'd been talking to wheeling close to the table on her left and the Mighty Dragon taking a seat to her right. Everyone else made their way to the table, some (including Banzai), carrying plates of refreshments that Stealth had provided. The chairs were mismatched and most were not of a height to have been intended to be used with this table, but Stealth had procured exactly enough for all of them. Banzai sat, sandwiched between Gorgon and the guy with the bling, across the table from Regenerator. When the last hero had taken his seat (Blockbuster, moving with a great deal of care), Stealth spoke up again. Unlike the Mighty Dragon, she had no problems speaking through a full facemask without her voice being muffles.

"Heroes of Los Angeles, I'm here to discuss with you our zombie problem )

[NFB, NFI, OOC is loved.]
spin_kick_snap: (Banzai (Psylocke))
Gorgon's bike shot down the street, slipping through intersections and around corners. He tried to cover as much ground as possible each night; the trick was to be seen as many places as possible, but never be moving so fast people thought he wouldn’t stop for something. There was a reason police cars seemed to move at "hanging out" speed a lot.

He'd also learned moving targets are harder to hit. There was a chip in his helmet where someone tried to blow his head off with a rifle. Knocked him off the bike, and that was the night he'd learned his power could drain someone from a block and a half away. Getting shot once was enough, and he didn't have Regenerator on speed-dial the way Banzai did. Hell, he didn't even have Banzai running around to stitch him up again.

Just another night in LA. )

[Adapted from Chapter 4, "Seeing the Big Picture" of Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines. NFI, NFB, OOC is enjoyed.]
spin_kick_snap: (Banzai (Psylocke))
Banzai flipped over the edge of the rooftop, landing in a graceful crouch with her rainbows fluttering around her. She stood easily, not a single bruise or sore spot remaining from her time in Cyseal. It was good to have a healing mage in her back pocket.

Her pleased smile vanished as she wondered how many times Regenerator's wife had thought the same thing.

Poor Regenerator. She wished she could do more for him; just covering his patrol hardly seemed like enough when he was faced with the loss of his wife. But Banzai was hesitant to call the number in her phone, unwilling to intrude on the private grief of a man whose real name she didn't even know. What was she supposed to say? She'd been lucky enough to never really lose anyone close to her; all she had was a few platitudes about being terribly sorry and that time healed all wounds.

Maybe she could bring him some tea later? She was perched on the rooftop of the small teahouse that Regenerator liked to frequent at the beginning of his patrols. He'd introduced her to it over Christmas break, explaining the proprietors were actually happy to serve the masked set, since it meant criminals tended to give the store a wide berth. They'd sat and talked over a few nice cups of Ceylon and Banzai'd told him all about her plans to become a doctor. He explained he was a medical resident for his day job. They laughed at the idea of one day working together in the wards and the streets. She should have given him her real name then, when he'd joked about commandeering her as an intern when it was time.

Maybe if she had, she'd feel less lost now. What was she supposed to do? Well, other than take his patrol and hope that somehow, he'd know that it was taken care of?

[NFB, NFI. Some text taken from Chapter 24, "How Am I Supposed to Live Without You", from Peter Clines' Ex-Heroes. OOC welcome, warning for oblique suicide mention.]
spin_kick_snap: (Texting)
Coming back from Cyseal, the last thing Kathy expected was to get ready to turn around and go again. But she was sorting her laundry to run a load or two when her phone rang again. That wasn't entirely unexpected, but the name that showed up on her caller ID certainly was.

Gorgon.

She'd barely talked to Nikolai since he'd moved back to LA, though they occasionally bumped into one another in LA when she patrolled. Certainly not enough for him to call her on a random Sunday evening.

"Hello?" she asked, putting her phone up to her ear. "Gorgon? Is everything okay?"

The Phone Call )

[Many thanks to [livejournal.com profile] furnaceface for letting me borrow NPC!Gorgon. Open for visitors before she leaves. Link to Anders'.]
spin_kick_snap: (Texting)
Kathy was had been at the prom for maybe half an hour before her phone rang; just enough time for her to have a few conversations and a quick trip to the refreshment table (or four). She was frowning when she felt it vibrating in her clutch, trying to think who it could be. If it was her parents, she decided, she was just going to ignore it and tell them later she was studying.

Imagine her surprise when the name that flashed across her screen was Gorgon. Actually, forget surprise. Imagine her concern.

"Hey," she said, setting her cup of punch on the closest table and ducking for the door. "Gorgon, it's Banzai. Did you mean to call me? Is everything okay?"

[For the caller, please!]
spin_kick_snap: (Banzai (Eyes))
After a week of pollen and then finding out that Minako was Sailor V and Mara Jade was some kind of...knife-wielding badass, Kathy had decided that spending a week with her classmates on a ship was not in the cards. She needed a little time and space to put her confused thoughts into order, to figure out how she felt about who and what, if anything, she wanted to do about it.

Rather than hang around an empty (and frigid) island while everyone else was enjoying Mexico (so much that no one had returned any of her handwavy texts!), Kathy had decided to head back to LA. Rather than going back to her parents' apartment for the week, Kathy'd rented a tiny motel room where she wouldn't have to worry about rules, curfew, or her family finding out about her late night hobbies. During the day, she could work on her homework and brood be pensive and at night she could be Banzai, too busy leaping over rooftops and chasing down criminals to live inside her own head.

You relax your way, she'd relax hers, all right?

Not that tonight was anything like relaxing. LA was so much bigger than Baltimore, with more crime and, specifically, more violent crime. She'd just finished taking down a mugger when she'd heard gunshots coming from the north. Giving the mugger's collar one last shake, she let him go and ran off as fast as she could towards the guns.

It might be kinda sick, but she loved this.

[And the link to the thread that begins after LJ breaks the page]

Profile

spin_kick_snap: (Default)spin_kick_snap

August 2017

S M T W T F S
  1234 5
6789101112
13141516171819
20 212223242526
2728293031  

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 20th, 2017 12:25 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios