I got into school a little later than I should have.There's kind of a problem when one of your teachers was sleeping with your Dad, with plans to move in. It was going to make the hustle of dipping out for my super hero antics that little bit more difficult.Luckily I'd decided to take a small break from crime fighting. After everything with Ayesha, her getting abducted by Houndmaster with a whole ass building getting blown up around my ears, I could use a break. Going a week without picking up a new scar would be a nice change of paces.It would be nice if life would let me lie down. Unfortunately now I was involved with some freaky magic stuff involving my upstairs neighbor. Who could have expected Mr Green, blind and losing his mind, was an actual real-deal wizard.A wizard who was a whole lot less Dumbledore and a whole lot more HP Lovecraft. Maybe it had been stress and an over-active imagination, but last night I'd dreamed...something...had come into my room. A kind of evil presence I couldn't fight. The specifics had slipped away when I woke up, but it had left me with an uneasy, disturbed feeling.There were more evils in this world than I'd imagined, and I had a decent imagination.Coming in to home room I slung my back off my chair, sliding in next to Ayesha.She looked as out of sleep as I did. Who could blame her. The fact she was back at school after everything she'd been through....because of me....she was stronger than I was. She some how found a smile for me, which made my own smile feel fake."Hey buddy, what's the haps?" Zeke said, swinging into the chair next to me, "Winter Ball tomorrow, you got a date?""Do you?" I asked.He pulled back defensively."I'm working on it," he said, then leaning past me, "Hey Yesha, you going to the dance?"She gave an uncertain nod. "Malcolm's taking me."Her boyfriend, her college aged boyfriend. It wilted Zeke bad, the torch he carried for her starting to gutter out."Are you going?" Ayesha asked me.I thought about it.>Yeah, could be fun>No, its not really my thing
Previously on With Great Power Quest: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=With%20Great%20Power%20Quest
>>4862429>Yeah, could be fungonna have to go make up with Kay tho
>>4862429>Yeah, could be funcan't wait to see Ivy getting all lovey dovey with our friend whose name I honestly can't remember right now. still gotta live a normal life sometimes though and this could be a fun part of that.
>>4862429>Yeah, could be funDisregard Kay, Misfit best girl
>>4862429>No, its not really my thingReal sad boy shit
>>4862456I mean, you wanna go dateless? Ivy and Ayesha are both taken, so even the most ardent of Kaylee haters have to admit we don't have much choice.
>>4862471you don't go to a dance with your ex, other girls exist too man. also we can go dateless too.
>>4862471>I mean, you wanna go dateless?YESWorst case, we hang out with Kemal
"Yeah, it could be fun," I said.It might help to do something normal for a change. Take a weekend off from some powered up gangster trying to kick my head off."Oh yeah?" Zeke said, "You going to ask someone out or are you a solo act?""Well whoever you ask, it won't be me," Kaylee said, taking the seat the other side of Ayesha. "I already have a date." I'm surprised she was even talking to me.I had thought briefly about asking Kay. Even if we were broken up, I still thought about her. A lot. Especially right now with her wearing her cheerleader outfit."Yeah, who?" Zeke said past me, at her."Daphne and I are going together," she said, "Platonically. For now."She said it like it was a warning or something. A deliberate needle. But I didn't know how to take it."You don't need a date to have fun," Ayesha said.Well...maybe.>I'm going solo>I was going to ask... (write-in)
>>4862559>I'm going solo
yo bullpen does misfit even have a secret identity? she's the only one of the four girls we know who isn't already going to the dance
>>4862559Oh god Kaylee has a date, what do we do? Do we even know any other girls? Annie?>I was going to ask... (write-in)I don't know. Someone. Anyone!
>>4862573I'd be down to ask Misfit but I thought she was a lesbian.
>>4862573her real name is Natalie Rodriguez, which she's told Eric
>>4862577Does that stop us form asking her out? I mean we would be going as companions/friends not romantic partners.
if you guys want you can ask Ayesha or someone to set you up with a random girl
>>4862559>I was going to ask... (write-in)my friend Natalie>>4862577She's bi, she wanted to bang Eric after the highway mission. Just realized almost every girl is at least sort of bi in this quest lmao
>>4862559>>4862615Let's do that, misfit is cool and all but Pendy could connect the dots and learn misfits secret identity if she's hanging around Eric
>>4862615Yeah on second thought this sounds safer, >>4862631 makes a good point
>>4862559>>I'm going solo
>>4862559>I was going to ask, ayeshaMay as well go with all the girls (Even is platonic) And it would be a good time to check on her and have a good time.Also, I need my fix of highSchool gala drama romance.
>>4862696>>4862634>>4862572>going sologoing solo wins, locked inkind of a shame, writing Misfit at a high school dance would have been fun
"Figure I can go solo," I said.Zeke wrapped my shoulder with his arm. "You and me both pal," he said, "Two lone wolves at the dance, hunting for prey!""That doesn't make sense, if there are two of you you can't be a lone wolf," Annie said from up the back."Mind your own business!" Zeke threw back at her."And hunting prey? Kind of creepy Zeke," said Kaylee with an uncomfortable frown.I untangled myself from Zeke and his tortured metaphor."What are you nerds talking about?" Ivy asked, striding in. She pulled off her purple jacket, tied it around her waist."The dance, I think," Chad called from up the back. He waved to me."Everyone's going to that thing?" Ivy said with a raised eyebrow."Yeah, but Eric doesn't have a date," Ayesha said.I thought I saw a spark light in Ivy's eyes. "That's a shame," she said."You can come with me and Malcolm," Ayesha said, "It'll be fun." I doubt Malcolm would be jumping for joy at the thought of a third-wheel."Why y'all talking about some dumbass dance?" Rufus said, "Get your head in the game, Eric, we're balling tonight. We need the win, and you've been slipping at practice.""Who made you team captain?" Ayesha said, sliding to my defense unasked for."I'm ready," I said. I was looking forward to it. Mr Nfume had organized a bus to take us out to the school we were playing against this afternoon. "Who're we playing again?"When Rufus said my guts dropped in shock. Jimmy Green's school.Sometimes I felt fate's hand held over my head, pulling at strings to make me spin and wheel to music I couldn't hear.I just hoped the universe didn't crash some cosmic trouble into my school life. Not after everything I'd been through. Give me a place to myself, a safe space away from insanity."You okay?" Ayesha asked."Huh?" I'd been staring, "Yeah, yeah I'm cool."No way in hell did she believe me. She laced her fingers through mine and gave my hand a squeeze. Smiled through her own exhaustion, trying to give me some warmth, guessing at what was going through my mind.She still didn't look right. I could see her smile was a front. I don't know how to put it but...I could see through her lately. After what we'd been through. I could tell what she was hiding in the way she sighed when no one was looking or the slip in her smile when she turned away. The only other person I could read like that was...Ivy, I guess.Only wished it was good things I was picking up. Or that she'd stop pretending all the time.Like I said, when my other life crashed into this one bad things happened.>maybe I should skip out on the game>no, I'm definitely going
>>4862745>no, I'm definitely goingThey'll have to start calling him Jimmy Blue when we're through. Because he'll be so sad his team lost.
>>4862745>no, I'm definitely going
>>4862745>no, I'm definitely goingIs it too late to ask misfit?
>>4862710Well bummer, then I'm all for just bailing early on the dance to hook up with Misfit and I don't know, mope? vent? be depressed? get pity sex? if she's down for it.But maybe shit goes down at the dance... man I just wish I found this quest earlier if only just to get Eric with Ivy or Misfit.
>>4862755yeah fuck it let's ask her
>>4862755I mean if enough people write it in, sure. Its not as if the dance is in a few hours. But I won't have a full revote on it so if anyone doesn't want to invite Misfit, say so
>>4862745>no, I'm definitely goingPlease can we ask Misfit, pretty please?
>>4862745>>no, I'm definitely going
>>4862745>no, I'm definitely goingKayfag thoroughly btfo as he should be. Talking about going to the dance with gtfo of here
>>4862774Come on boys we can do it!
>>4862774I'd be ok with it as long as we tell her Penderose suspects us and suspicion may fall onto her as well by association.
>>4862774Agreeing with >>4862832
okay locking all that in
>>4862768I'm still not giving up on Ivy, we barely see her these days and she's hanging out with Dane or whatever but I'm pretty sure there'd be a good chance with her if Eric was honest and straightforward with her about his feelings
Actually, I did have someone I could ask to the dance.Maybe it was Zeke's lone wolf comment, maybe it was everyone else having a date, but I figured why not give it a chance."Actually, there's somebody I was going to ask," I said."Yea, who?" Ivy said, a bit too quickly."You don't know her," I said, "She doesn't go to this school."The others started snickering. "Oh yeah where's she from, Canada?" Rufus said."Nah, no, she's real," I said, "Her name's Natalie." Or Misfit as I'm used to calling her. I don't think I'd actually called her Natalie until right then. It felt weird."Sure, Eric," Ivy said.Before I could say more the bell rang out sending us out into the school. "She's real," I insisted as my friends streamed out. "Come on!"I guess they'd have to find out tomorrow.Mean time, I had a game to get ready for. School kind of whipped by, I wasn't really in the headspace for it. I got chewed out by a couple of teachers after class for my slipping grades. I was back down to getting Bs after clawing my way up to straight As. I guess teachers cared more when a good student started failing, since I never got the kind of flack when I was sitting on a comfortable B-.Fact is I wasn't the only one, though when they talked to Ayesha about a slipping grade they were a whole lot more gentle."We just want to make sure you get back to being you," one said with a kind of self-pleasing smile made me want to spit. Ayesha took it with her best smile though."Trying to get there!" she said with a forced wave, but the smile didn't last.If I had more time to help her out I would, but Mr Nfume had me helping stow the equipment in the bus. It wasn't a lot of work, it was mostly about supervising Howie.Of course, Howie was distracted by all the cheerleaders coming up to congratulate him on doing such a good job. I know he wasn't faking, you couldn't fake what Howie had, but sometimes I think he's aware of the crippled puppy thing he had going with some of the girls. It left me with all the workers, the bus driver slurping coffee as I stowed the bags, Mr Nfume chatting with Principal Wrightson.Light punishment for missing practice. The rest of the team started gathering up."Ready to kick some ass?" Hunter said."I heard off Mr Sack if we get another win and this'll be our best season yet," Tim said, "The footbal team can eat shit!""Yeah, they've only won literally every game of the season, and we got half our wins through forfeits," Rufus added, "Doing better than before still isn't doing good.""Don't worry Roof, you got the Hunter back on the court," Hunter said, puffing out his chest.
We piled in, a busload of chatting, joking teenage boys all ready to fuck shit up. Then the cheerleaders got on and what we were feeling, the excited buzz, spiked. There was something really primal about it. I'd always laughed it off before. But the whole being an athlete cheered on by a pretty girl just built something up, something big and horny that wanted to impress everyone watching. It sharpened the competitive edge.I'd like to say I was more mature than that but with Kaylee kicking her legs up on a seat, leaning on Jessica, no way was that true.Mr Nfume blew his whistle to kill the chatter. He was a tall black shadow, bent forward, holding onto the back of seats to keep from being rocked off his feet as the bus drove down the Chicago streets."Okay boys," he said, "Sit up and listen. We're going into enemy territory. This is a gang of rich kids but don't think that means much. Rich kids means private lessons, means time and equipment you all didn't get." He was talking like we were south side bangers, a complete lie, but it was working. The others were getting angry. "Some of these kids have parents in the NBA. They think they're due a win because of who they are and where they come from. They think they have legacy.""Well they haven't played you boys yet. Show them all the lessons in the world don't mean shit next to real grit, real determination. Take it to the paint. Teach their gentrifying, white collar, ten dollar milkshake asses what real basketball is all about.""Hoo-ra!" Hunter yelled."Show them what time it is," Mr Nfume said, "What time is it?""Game time!" we yelled together. No time for irony. This is serious.>not serious enough to use my powers though>maybe use a little bit, to give us a winning edge
>>4862986>not serious enough to use my powers thoughNot very sporting, shooting fish in a barrel
>>4862986>not serious enough to use my powers though
>>4862986>not serious enough to use my powers thoughnot worth it
>Ivy and Eric both acting all jealous toward each other and lying about itlmao good show bullpen this is that real teen drama shit. Ivy's still best girl so don't go too far here with misfit fellas. I guess I'm confused about what Ivy was doing with Dane to begin with, especially right after we borderline confessed to her before the new years day gang war
>>4862986>not serious enough to use my powers though>>4863018Borderline is the operative word there, if anything we should've gone all in. At least from her point of view. Plus Dane's a nice guy.
>>4862986>maybe use a little bit, to give us a winning edge
I'll post this update tomorrow.see you guys then
>>4863100Thanks for running
>>4863018Oh, I'm living for theses mtv teenage segments
you guys ready for some basketball?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nendMLrpI-s
you all don't know but this is actually a basketball quest
>>4864101>>4864103You've tricked me into reading a sports quest you machiavellian bastard
The sun set early and the cold climbed up by the time we got the school. I was breathing mist on the sunset, shivering in my jacket. Bright lights lit up the academy's court, pretty much a mini-arena. Cars were parked down the street and in the car lot like half the school and most of their families had come out to support the home team.Me, I saw Dad and Miss Flores drive by looking for a park."B-b-b-basketball!" Howie sang as he unloaded the bus. We all pitched in to give him a hand.Rufus eyed the stadium like it was the den of a vicious beast, Mr Nfume made some notes on his board. Our joking on the bus had died leaving us quiet but focused. We were here to win.Tim stretched with Hunter. I hopped on the spot, throwing a couple of punches, shadow boxing."Miller," Mr Nfume said."Yeah coach?" I said."You're a little badass," he said, "If the other team starts throwing stray elbows, I want you to check them, get it? Show them they can't out tough us.""I thought goons were a hockey thing, coach," I said. He frowned at me. "Will do coach," I said with a salute.So I'm the team goon, huh? It's not a role I wanted for myself, but if its what the coach wanted...The cheerleaders came out next. Kemal came bounding over, bag over his shoulder."Good luck tonight," he said with a big grin, "We'll be cheering you guys on, but you're the ones on the court.""Thanks dude," I said. We knocked fists then elbows.Okay. Time to put some work in.Walking through the doors of the stadium into the court, we were greeted with something wouldn't look out of place on ESPN or a proper NBA game. The floor of the court glistened with polish and wax, immaculate, practically glowing under the bright lights. An electric score board showed red letters and over the PA boomed some trap house mix. The stands were filling up, mostly for the home team. They could pack maybe thousands in here.Money went a long way.Did we have any supporters here?A wave from the left caught my eye. She was five rows up, Ayesha, standing over the person sitting in front of her, waving, Malcolm sitting behind her with her parents.The other team was getting set up. But there was something different about them almost..."Ah shit are we playing a girl's team?" Rufus said, throwing up his hands."Gender intergrated," Mr Nfume said, "Don't slack just because they have a couple of girl on the side.""Coach, that ain't right," Hunter grumbled.Jogging over with jordans squeaking on the court came one of those girl players, a bandaid over the bridge of her nose. I recognized her right away but I doubt she remembered me. Ashe, Jimmy Green's science partner. She had a light tan with freckles showing through, dark hair shorter than most of the boys, and a wide easy grin.I kind of liked her right away.
"Yo!" she said, offering out a hand, "Welcome to our school. You guys ready to ball?"The others gave her dead eyes. Me, I reached out a hand."Hell yeah," I said, "And we didn't come to lose.""Great! Neither did we," her handshake was firm, "I'm Ashe, Ashe Givens. You?""Eric," I said."Good luck out there Eric," she said, walking away backwards, "Watch out for the cross up.""You too," I said."Man, don't be friendly with the enemy," Rufus muttered.If Ashe was here I wondered if Jimmy was too. I didn't wonder long. He was sitting up on the bleachers looking down glum and tired. I waved but he didn't wave back. I got the impression Jimmy didn't like me.Seeing him though took me out of the game. The temperature dropped and I shivered, remembering yesterday, catch a half-memory of my nightmare. Something lurching out of the dark.I swallowed."So this will be my last game, sorry," I heard Kaylee say to Peyton, her team captain. The pony-tailed blonde nodded. "I'm just so busy with the production." I lingered to watch the cheerleaders stretch. Kaylee had her leg up on a bench, bowing over it, while behind her Jessica did the splits, long tan legs stretching out.I swallowed again.It really did add an edge. It was only a little bit ruined by Kemal doing the same.The ref was taking the court, calling over the coachs for a word. The other team had a tall red head woman as their coach, kind of imposing. Intergrated teams, huh?It only mean three girls as far as I could tell, most of the rest were skyscrapers looked ready to throw down. Maybe the boys over there didn't like this intergrated experiment either. Maybe the girls made an easy scapegoat if they lost."What are we going to do today, boys?" Rufus asked."Fuck shit up," said Tim."That's right, no going easy on them because their girls," he said.As someone who had been put in hospital by a woman, albeit a woman who could kick fireballs, I was going to agree."Game time," he said.The game was on.I was a starter today. Hunter had the center. He came to the middle with the biggest guy on the other team, ref between them. Ref threw up the ball, blew hard on his whistle.Hunter launched up, slapped the ball out of the other guy's hands, landing spun and shot the ball to me.A nervous clutch in my chest went 'squish' but as soon as the ball hit the court I was moving.Then Ashe slid in front of me, keeping low, defending.>roll 3 x 1d100+10 dc 75
Rolled 17 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864155lesgoooo
Rolled 47 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864155Time to job
Rolled 62 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864155
not a pass but Eric doesn't fall on his face.
>>4864166Now that's rough, so close yet so far.Better we fail at something low-stakes like this rather than something important and life-threating Who am I kidding we'll fuck up that as well
I bobbed one way she came with me. I went the other she was stuck, the grin staying in front of me.God damn. I faked a pass to Tim and she went to intercept then swerved around her, closing in on the three point line. "Cross up," I said. She wasn't the only defender though, and I had a rush of long arms and elbows coming at me.I went for a three point shot right as he crashed into me. The ball went high while I went down, bounced off the backboard and into the enemy's hands. I slid down the waxy court. I wasn't hurt but the crowd went off as if I was. Picking myself up before anyone could give me a hand, I went back in.The ref didn't call a foul or anything.So it was going to be like that, huh?Tough it out then.Ashe was open and signalled for the ball but her team mate ignored her, passing it closer just for it to get snatched by Rufus. I closed in behind Rufus, blocking up a guy trying to run up behind him. I threw a lazy elbow in his way. If it hit it hit, right? Rufus took a jump shot and we got on the board, the cheerleaders spelling out his name.But it didn't last like that.A pass got the ball in Ashe's hands. She had to be the shortest player on the court but she made it work, so low to the ground she was practically lying on it. I got in front of her right by the three-point line, matching her movement. The ball went one way then her body the other and the next thing I knew I was fumbling as she passed the ball between my legs and caught it up behind me. Some bullshit."Cross up!" she said and went for a layup where Tim was supposed to be."Close those holes!" Mr Nfume said, waving his board, "Come on boys!"Ashe winked at me as she jogged by.I'd like to say we did what Mr Nfume said, but five minutes later they shot a three point, then the guy who'd knocked me down got a dunk.Despite being the first one on their team on the board, they sure didn't pass to Ashe much.We were behind when Mr Nfume called time, but we weren't done."Remember, defense," Mr Nfume said, "Close up those holes. Take possession and drive it deep, but don't leave your ass hanging out."We nodded."Okay, take them to the dance boys," he said with a nod."Woo, go Eric!" I heard from the crowd. I looked back. Dad and Miss Flores, Carmen, had finally made their way inside, sitting up the front behind the cheerleaders.Miss Flores (Carmen) waved.Rufus slapped the back of my head."Focus up," he said."Yeah," I said, jogging out behind him, taking my position.Let's try and turn this around.>roll 3 x 1d100+10 dc 75
Rolled 28 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864200
Rolled 83 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864200
>>4864209oh hey I actually got a pass this time around
Rolled 37 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864200NAT ONE BABY
>>4864209there we go>>4864221it will happen one day
>>4864222I'm just hoping it will in the slice of life part
They had us in the first half.We weren't going to give them a second."Eric," Mr Nfume said, "Elbows."I nodded.We went to the court. Hunter stole the ball, shot it down court to Tim, who shot it to Rufus, who drove hard through the defenders with me running protection."Shit, sorry," I said as I 'stumbled' between Rufus and the guy who had run me down earlier. Rufus took it on the rebound."Raise the Roof!" Hunter said with a high five slap.It became a back and forth of squeaking shoes on their nice polished court, but we could feel the momentum starting to swing back to us.They got the ball and drove in, Ashe ducking under Tim and swerving around Hunter. She went up for a shot but a large hand slapped down knocking the ball out of her grasp and the girl on her ass. She brushed it off.Tim had the ball. We drove down the court, cutting through the defenders. We got to the three point line and he faked a shot but passed to me.I ducked under a sharp elbow, dipped around a driving knee. I came up and sprung.There wasn't much in life more satisfying then getting a dunk, specially when you got half a time on your ass. The ball swished through the net and I hung from the rim, hanging off it as a cheer went up from our friends in the crowd and the scoreboard ticked up."Slick," Rufus said as we passed back.We were ahead, feeling confident. Feeling like we had this. The other team was starting to look tired, had the thing in their eyes where they knew they were in trouble.It was a look I'd seen on hard case cornerboys who didn't want to admit they were outgunned. Too proud to back down."Don't get cocky, we haven't won yet," Mr Nfume said, "Miller, you're off. Take a knee for a minute."I jogged over to the bench, tagging in Ramon. The Latino kid flew in, glad to finally be off the bench.Howie handed me a water bottle and a towel. He hopped on the spot with excitement."Thanks boss," I said, swirling water in my mouth before spitting it in a bucket. His focus became fixed on the game."So what the fuck are you doing here?"Looking back Jimmy Green was glowering down on me. For a big porky dude he was quiet, but with all the noise going on I guess it wasn't hard to sneak up on someone."Playing basketball," I said.His glare didn't ease up."Hey, you know this guy Eric?" Peyton said, the head cheerleader coming up with Kemal. Despite being barely five feet tall Peyton sure could command a space. It was weird being 'protected' by a petite cheerleader too. Kemal was all smiles behind her."I know him," I said. She backed off a little, but Kemal kept an eye out. Behind us someone scored. "How've you been?" I asked.From the bags under his eyes I'd guess not well."You get any sleep last night?" he asked.A chill went up my back. "You want to talk about it here?" I said."We should talk about it," he said.I checked how the game was going. We were still ahead.>okay, let's talk>can it wait until after the game?
>>4864244>can it wait until after the game?
>>4864244>can it wait until the end of the game?
>>4864244>okay, let's talk
>>4864244>can it wait until after the game?BBall is life
"I know you're having a crazy magical start in life, but if I don't get my basketball fix every now and then I'll literally go crazy man"
"Can it wait until after, you know, the game?" I said, gesturing to the court. Rufus took a bad fall. Tim helped him up."You like this stuff?" Jimmy said."Yeah," I said, "What, you don't?""Sportsball isn't my thing," he mumbled, his eyes tracking Ashe down the court.Okay, he had a crush. Fair enough, she was cute in a tomboy kind of way. She could ball too."You want some advice," I said, "You've got to make boxes out of your life. Put all the shit you want to talk about right now in one box, put this stuff in another. Try and keep them separate, it'll be good for your sanity.""Compartmentalize," he said."Yeah."I shot up to my feet. "Oh fuck you!" I yelled as Tim went down with a bloody nose, "Foul, that's a fucking foul!"The ref blew his whistle. Tim limped off wincing, pinching the bridge of his nose."You good to take a free throw?" Mr Nfume asked him."I can barely see," he said, eyes watering, blood thick on his upper lip.The ref came over and confered with the coaches. Instead they gave up possession."You're in Miller," Mr Nfume said, "Get the ball to Hunter and watch his back.""Yes sir," I said, "Talk to you in a sec Jim."I ducked out onto the court."Let's get this done," Rufus said, ball in hand, looking for a pick.>roll 3 x 10d100 +10 dc 75
Rolled 36 (1d100)>>4864324i assume it a 1d not 10d
>>4864329yes, that's correctsorry my bad
Rolled 90 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864324
>>4864333oh shit I'm on a roll tonight
Rolled 71 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864324
>>4864333good shit anon!
Rolled 85 + 10 (1d100 + 10)>>4864324Look at my 100?
He shot the ball to me, I shot the ball to Hunter.The asshole who fouled Tim and knocked me down moved in looking for a three-peat.Fuck outta here. Hunter drove in deep with me off to his side. When the gangly asshole looked about to run him down I stepped through for an intercept. Hunter passed me the ball, stepping out behind me letting the asshole swing past. I took a shot, bounced it off the backboard, only for Hunter to spring up and rescue it with a slam dunk."Nice," I said."Hunter-Killer in the zone," Rufus said.Whatever the rest of the team was doing in the offense it boiled down to the three of us, working the triangle plays we'd been drilling. If there's one thing boxing ad basketball shared it was the importance of position. We made this shit look tactical, even dipped in sweat.The ball cut through the air, nothing but net from the three-point line."Yoo, Eric!" Ayesha cheered, voice cutting over the crowd.The gap was widening and it became obvious we had this. We could run out the clock.But that's not my style.We drove in for a last play. Ashe came in for an intercept. I tried for a cross-up but she wasn't falling for it this time, her sweaty face keeping match with mine. I wasn't getting past her so I passed back to Rufus. Rufus passed forward to Hunter. There was an opening by the hoop. I moved in to fill it. Hunter saw me going, racing with Ashe on my heels. He shot me the ball and I rose up, springing up on limber legs.I caught it mid-air, and brought it down in a slam dunk.The buzzer screeched.I dropped to the court, only to get wrapped up in sweaty arms, the team on top of me cheering in my ear."That's how we do it!" Rufus spat, "That's how it's fucking done!"Glory, glory hallelujah. It felt dumb to say but I had trouble breathing. I was shaking. And winning under my own name, under my own power, no cheat codes.It was the best feeling.If the other team was sour they hid it. We shook hands."You got some moves," Ashe said. Her jersey was soaked through and she looked about ready to collapse."You too," I replied, flushed and grinning.I backed up the benches, drenched in sweat. However tired I was, winning made it easy to wear.Mr Nfume wasn't a big smiler but he was smiling now. "Well done gentlemen," he said."Yo, there an after-party after this?" Hunter asked, looking around all hopeful, "Kemal, can you throw us one? You got that dope sound system.""And a hot tub," Jessica said."Sorry dude, parents are back from Qatar," he said, "Sharia is back in effect my brother.""Come on, we've got to celebrate!" Hunter said, "Rufus, what about you?"As much as I wanted to join in, Jimmy Green was lurking by the stands, waiting for me. I told the others I'd catch up before jogging over to him."Sorry I kicked your girlfriend's ass," I said.He squirmed. "She's not my girlfriend," he said."What do you want to talk about?" I said.He looked around. "Not here," he said.
He dipped into a corridor. I followed.The school was empty after hours, the sounds of the stadium ringing down the abandoned hallways. Our shoes scuffed loud. Schools at night, like any place that normally crowded, became strange when they were empty. Everything at a tilt, not quite right. We went by a trophy case, the glory of years gone by gleaming behind a glass screen. Posters warned of the dangers of STDs, crack-rock, and self-harm. Clubs were advertized, everything from the LGBT+ society to a Gardening 4 Fun group. My attention lingered on a poster for the Committee for Community Vigilance.'Be alert for paranormal activity. Call now.'Hate mob bullshit, I was tempted to tear it down.Jimmy stopped by a board with the names of the Honor Roll put up. His was there in golden letters near the top. The sounds from the stadium had fallen away, the heat with it.The light was gone and we stood in the dark."I had a dream last night," he said, "Only...I don't think it was a dream."Goose pimples rose on my arms."He was there, in my room," he said. Mist wisped out from between his lips. "Standing there. Looking at me.""He talked to me," Jimmy said."What did he say?" I said.Jimmy rubbed his forehead. "I don't remember."I shivered and it had nothing to do with the cold. The joy of victory fell as a memory dredged up, a dark and sticky blackness in my mind."Did you have a dream like that too?" he said.I didn't want to say 'yes', my throat was too thick, so all I could was nod."The Stranger," Jimmy said.An animal thing kicked in my chest, and fire woke up. I grabbed his hand."Don't," I said, "If you talk about them-""They notice," he said, "Yeah, 'The Shadows of Arinae'." He pulled a yellowed paper back out of his pocket, held it up. 'Robert C Green' in faded red letters over a buff black man with a curvy Asian girl looking helpless behind him. "One of the old man's books. Pops really did write all this down. In it he calls them the Shadows of the Greater Dark. They come to dreamers 'touched by fire' to draw them to the sinister path. They can 'step inside' if they're invited in.""Sounds...not good," I said."There are protective charms and spells against them," he said, "But I don't know if these will work. I don't know...""You sound a lot less skeptical now," I said.He adjusted his jaw, rolled his tongue over his teeth. "Maybe I don't know everything," he said.>you want to try them out? can't hurt to try>maybe we should ask your grandpa first>let's save this for another day
>>4864414>you want to try them out? can't hurt to try
>>4864414>you want to try them out? can't hurt to tryinb4 instead of warding against evil he attracts it
we going to magic land now
"Want to try them out?" I said, "Can't hurt to try."I knew the words were stupid as soon as they came out of my mouth, but Jimmy had the book open, flipping through."In the uh, in the book its said the spells are made in the 'first language'," he said, "The elder tongue of the early men, who rose with the dawn and set til to earth and made green things grow.""Imagine speaking a language where every word is a magic spell," I said."It's not," Jimmy said, "It's...the words need to be spoken by a Magi, one with a clear mind and pure intent." Aged paper rustled under his fingers. "So, is that me, a Magi?""Your uncle called you a Red Wizard," I said."Maybe the specifics are in another book," Jimmy said."You're a..." I started."Don't," he gave me a hard look."You're a wizard, Jimmy," I said, trying to joke through the creeping dark building up in my mind.My sweat cooled to a deep chill. The shadows of the school hall were still, a throbbing silence in the air. The throbbing silence of electrical currents. A heavy sound, my own breathing. Jimmy's breathing. With the flick-flick-flick of paper.The Stranger. Just thinking about him. About it. It made the shadows deeper.A gray tongue licked out in my mind. White teeth.Was it a memory, or something calling?Jimmy stopped on a page, finger tracing along with lips puckered."A night charm," he said, clearing his throat, "Sister Blue casts it to protect the foundling prince while they travel through the Valley of the Shadow-Men.""Yehg-yajna-asi-," he said. was he pronouncing them right? "Mehr-srosh-rashna."If anything had happened I couldn't feel it."Is your mind clear?" I said.He glared at me over the book."What about your intent?"He thumbed through the book."Does this have a pronunciation guide or..." he muttered."Maybe you need to..." I started, but stopped.Something was happening. The throbbing silent pulse was becoming more present. More an atmosphere than a sound. Growing. The pulse of a heart, all around us."You feel..." I said.He stared at the book, breathing hard. Closed his eyes.Nothing changed. The walls. Nothing changed. They throbbed.Something pushed from inside the wall. But the wall didn't change. Nothing moved but something pushed.Breath quickened. Fists clenched. My inner fire roared.Something reached out.Not to me, to Jimmy.To the Red Wizard.Whispers, barely more than spit. Church whispers without words.I wanted to grab for Jimmy. I couldn't move. I wanted to shout to him. I couldn't speak.All I had was my heart beat, pounding inside.How far away was the stadium? How close?Another world.A groan from under my feet.Fire roared useless inside me. I drew on it, as much as I had. Drawing it up.It was enough. Enough to unhine my door."Jimmy," a distant hiss, barely a thought. Was I really speaking? "Speak."
The book crumpled in his grip. He shook, a whimper from between his lips."Speak."His jaw tightened, his face tense. His eyes sealed shut. The fat belly, his second chin, trembled."Sssss-peak," I said.The book became a knot in his hand, sweat crawling down his fat cheeks."Go," he croaked, "Go. Away." the words snorted out, "Go. Way. Go. Away! Go! Away!"The whispers rose in unrthymic chittering all around us. Words slipping through. 'Jimmy. Jimmy. Jimmy'.'Don't be scared.''Jimmy.' Then, as if whispered just to me, 'Eric.'Mom."Go away!" he yelled and lurched forward a step. He lost his balance, slapped his hands on the glass case, catching his fall. "Go away, go away!"The chittering settled to a distant chorus. Then it whispered away, taking the pulsing atmosphere with it. The walls.My gut dropped out and I slammed my knees into the ground, heaving, a harsh acid rising in my throat."Jesus," Jimmy cried, "Jesus Christ!"And he was crying, thick tears down his face. He dug into his cheeks, digging in finger nails as he couldn't stop crying.Whatever that had been it wasn't para-shit, no way. Not something I could punch. I don't know how to fight something like that."What's wrong?"I looked up. Ashe was still in her jersey, a towel around her shoulder."Jim?" she said, and with a gasp ran over to his side. He curled against her shoulder where she cradled him. "Hey, you. Eric, right? What happened to Jim? What did you do?">Nothing! It was nothing!>I...I asked him to do something stupid>It's none of your business
>>4864553>I...I asked him to do something stupid
>>4864553>I...I asked him to do something stupidwell at least we confirmed that we aren't just both crazy. gotta get Jimbo here trained properly
>>4864553>"We need to go, Now.">Grab Jimmy and have him lean on us.>"Back up into the stadium and stay out of the dark."
>>4864553>I...I asked him to do something stupidShit man.. what the fuck was that? I'm used to just winging it and figuring shit out on my own. That was a bad idea.
>>4864553Oh yeah, and>I...I asked him to do something stupidto this at the top of the list>>4864564
>>4864554>>4864558>>4864564>>4864566>>4864567>>4864573>>4864578locking it all in
"I...I asked him to do something stupid," I said."What did you do?" I don't know if she was asking me or Jimmy."Come on," I said. I grabbed Jimmy around the side. Big guy was heavy, nothing I couldn't manage. Ashe took the other side. "We need to go, now. Back up to the stadium, and stay out of the dark!""The dark?" Ashe checked the shadows as we walked Jimmy down the hall.The electric buzz overhead was normal, right? It was a faint stirring in the air. Nothing to it. The squeak of our shoes on the floor. No louder than ever. And the shadows were shadows.Right?"They reach out through the door, they want to come in," Jimmy mumbled, "Keep the door locked.""He doesn't sound okay," Ashe said."Keep moving," I said, "Keep moving."Up ahead there was a spot of light, a long way down a corridor. Sounds coming down there, the left overs in the stadium. I picked up my feet, the big guy sagging between us."Can't go where they aren't invited," he mumbled, "But lie...lie...lie about who they are. Lie. They are the lie. Everywhere.""Keep talking buddy," I said.The glow of the light against the dark, calling, welcoming. Home was in the light.Home was just ahead. 'Keep a fire in the window,' I thought, 'find our way home.' Something old folks used to do. Candles in the window. Hard about it in stories, old movies. It made sense now. You could get lost in the dark."All around us," Jimmy sighed.We stepped into the light. It was so bright it was blinding. I had to cover my eyes."Eric?" she stepped into the dark to help us, warm hands helping pull Jimmy through.Ayesha. She took my arm. She blocked out the blinding light and I saw her eyes wide. Was she scared? I looked behind me to see if we were being followed, what was scaring her. Nothing there.She took my arm in hers. Out of the dark and into the light of the stadium.Moving out into the light we broke apart. Ayesha and me going on way. Jimmy and Ashe the other.I went to a bucket and puked up, guts roiling hot. It was more spit up than vomit but it left me dizzy.Nearly everyone had left. Ayesha's parents had hung around, so had Malcolm. Kaylee was talking to them when we came stumbling out. Dad and Miss Flores were waiting by the exit. Bunch of people I didn't know hanging around.Thought I might vomit again. Ayesha stroked back my hair."Eric," she said, "Are you okay?"I nodded. If anyone had anything to say about how we were or what had happened they didn't say anything. Malcolm stood really close though, sticking by Ayesha. He looked concerned, kinda. More a front, 'cause it twisted to something less pleasant when I wasn't looking. He kept closer to Ayesha when she ran a cloth over my chin.Kaylee was watching too. Frowning."You're okay," she said.I nodded but I was lying.It had spoken to me. It had said my name. In Mom's voice."Come on Jiminy Cricket," Ashe said, "Breathe in, breathe out. It's a little panic attack, I get them all the time."
He gave an exagerated nod, looking like he was going to be sick too."You know him?" Ayesha asked."Yeah," I said, "He...his grandpa lives in my building.""Will he be okay?"I shrugged, getting up from my knees."Better already," Malcolm said, an arm around Ayesha's shoulder, "Slick moves out there, champ. Really impressive stuff.""Thanks," I said.I wanted to go home. I wanted to go to sleep with the lights on. I wanted Mom to tell me it was just a nightmare."Eric," Jimmy said."Yeah?"He stared at me for a sec. "I really, really don't like you," he said.I sighed."Yeah."And I really couldn't blame him. It was nobody's fault but mine.
(I'll pick this up tomorrow)
>>4864630Fuck you too jimmy, we're going to be great friends one day but you gotta get trained first. Also goddamn are we idiots, messing around with magic shit when we barely understand our own power
>>4864630>"Eric," Jimmy said.>"Yeah?">He stared at me for a sec. "I really, really don't like you," he said.Sorry, Jimmy, but we had magical trauma adventures together. You're stuck with us until someone inevitably dies a tragic and dramatic character-building death.
>>4864630So begins the adventures of Hotspur and his new wizard friend as they lose their shit against eldritch forces beyond their comprehension
>>4864630We should switch to learning KungFu, if magic is real, Kung Fu soul magic should be too, and we NEED, something like that to help us. Brute force with boxing isn't gonna cut it anymore.
>>4864911I think you need to be magically attuned like Jimmy to do kungpow moves, we got our own powers and are weak against magic, every superhero needs a kryptonite and I think we found ours
>>4864932Magic and Kung Fu magic are different, we got the soul stuff, he's got the magic blood, we need to switch regimen's.
When I went to bed that night I slept with the light on.It certainly robbed the joy of a win.Pancakes for breakfast the next morning made on okay consolation prize. Dad fried up the bacon til it was all crunch.He'd be spending the day helping Miss Flores pack her stuff and move it in."But I'll see you tonight at the dance," Dad said."Why?" I replied, stabbing the pancake."I've got chaperone duties," Miss Flores said, "Maybe you shouldn't come, Joe. It might be embarassing for Eric. No one else's parents will be there.""I'm not embarassed," I said, a little embarassed.Dad shrugged. "So, you got a date?" he said.I blushed. "Yeah." It was still a maybe, I hadn't asked Misfit yet, but I was going to ask today. She was crashing at Queen Rat's place with Thunderchild. I couldn't talk about any of that with Miss Flores around though."Is it the blonde or the black girl?" he asked."What? No, neither," I said.Dad pointed with a syrupy encrusted fork. "This kid," he said, "I swear to god. I love him but I don't know how he does it. Feels like he has a dozen girls hanging off him."I blushed. It wasn't like that. Miss Flores smiled.I felt something brush my leg. "Speaking of," Dad said, as Mangy wrapped her fluffy tail around my leg. She just wanted a piece of bacon. She stalked over to Miss Flores and sniffed her toes before rubbing her chin against her foot."She must smell my cat," Miss Flores said."Anyway, I've got to go," I said, sliding back a half finished breakfast. "See you guys...whenever I see you I guess."Miss Flores waved with her fork while I stalked out, still burning with embarassment. So I had a lot of female friends, so what? I wasn't some kind of player.Since I was swinging down to Queen Rat's I went to my hideout to change. It had snowed again last night. The flurries were growing lighter the deeper we were getting into the year though. Most of it had melted with the sunrise, making everything wet and miserable. I passed Hector the Junkie digging through a dumpster, crossed over to say good morning to Smokey and D-Mark hanging outside Luis shop, then hurried to get changed.It was good to slip into my costume. Made it easy to forget last night. Well, not forget. There was no forgetting last night. But it made it easier to carry. When I leapt into the sky, tumbling around til the world was upside down, it made it a distant memory next to the joyful rush of the wind ripping around me. The hard thump of landing on a roof top was the good shock I needed to remind myself I was alive.Pigeons scattered from roosts as I trecked down to the south side, bounding through an open sky under a cold winter sun.I saw the trouble before I got there. A thicket of protestors, a woman out the front on a megaphone. A couple of patrol cars were parked behind them, cops watching, making sure it didn't get out of control.
"-ILLEGAL! UNWANTED! WHO KNOWS WHAT IS LIVING INSIDE! ARE WE WILLING TO RISK ANOTHER OOZE? WE NEED THESE FREAKS OUT OF OUR COMMUNITY *BEFORE* MORE PEOPLE GET HURT!"I'd seen the woman before. Her daughter had been killed by the Ooze. She'd talked at other protests, leading the charge. I couldn't blame her, she wasn't wrong for being scared or concerned. She'd brought a crowd but the crowd was growing as she talked, more people from the neighborhood."WE ARE NOT A HATE GROUP!" she bleated through the megaphone, "OUR ORGANIZATION HAS MEMBERS FROM EVERY WALK OF LIFE! WE'RE A PUBLIC SAFETY GROUP! THE FACTS STAND, PARA-FREAKS ARE DANGERS. VIOLENT CRIME IS AT AN ALL-TIME HIGH AND PARA-FREAKS ARE RESPONSIBLE! WE HAVE MEN IN THE SKY THE POLICE CAN'T CATCH! NO ONE IS SAFE UNTIL EVERY PARA-FREAK IS KNOWN AND REGISTERED, OR FORCED OUT OF OUR CITY!"She was a firebrand, spitting into the megaphone. Most of the crowd agreed with her, but the locals at least looked doubtful.A couple of Queen Rat's men, hard looking guys with durags and low slung jeans, kept guard at the front entrance to the community center. Slurs had been tagged up on the wall, not only just anti-para slogans but racist stuff too. Nothing I wanted to repeat, but most of them targeted at Queen Rat herself.The crowd had been organized by the Committee of Community Vigilance, but a couple guys on the fringes looked a few degrees harder. In ray ban shades with hard glares, they looked ex-military and angry about it. A couple still wore combat boots in desert camo. I had a feeling they were with the Humanity First Militia, the militant arm of the Committee. A couple were talking with the cops.Great.Not why I was here though.Bounding over the center I got a few gasps from the crowd before I was gone.I landed in the back, near the loading bay.Misfit had her bike on a tarp, music playing from a speaker, going over the engine.Grease smeared her chin, she hummed along as she turned the wrench. 'Doot-doot-doot' she muttered. She was done in a white sleeveless shirt and black jeans, her jacket hung over a stool.Meat Loaf, not what I'd expected."But I just won't do that, no, no," she crooned badly as she inspected a nut, checking a washer. She flicked it away, pulled out a fresh one."Sup Fit," I said, landing behind her."Huh?" she looked up. A bright grin opened her face. "Hey, 'Spur! What's good? Long time no see.""Sorry about that," I said, "Been busy. How you been?""Clearing my name, yeah, I owe you," she said, "DPA even gave me some cash-money. Kind of a bribe, right? But I figure, hell, I'll take any motherfucker's money if they give it away." She fixed the new washer in, tightened the nut. "Sorry, just giving the old girl some love."
"Child put in a good word for me with the boss lady," she said, "I'm kind of providing security, you know, keeping the peace. It's a pretty good gig. Real nice folks here."She went down under the bike, working away."That's good," I said, "Hey, you know I was wondering." This shouldn't be as nerve racking as it was. Misfit was a pal. This should be as simple as asking if she wanted to get some fries or whatever. But my throat kind of stuck, watching her work. Her top peeled up to show just a little bit of tan belly, flexing with every grunt. For some reason I couldn't look away."Do you want to uh, go out tonight?""Go out?" she said, waving her spanner at me from under the bike. "Shit yeah dude, I could cut loose. Who you want to fuck up? I got some Russians I been eyeing, and those Outfit jerks could use a head kick or two.""Nah, no, not like that," I said, "Uh, I mean, uh, there's this dance at school, right? The Winter Ball. I was wondering if you'd like to go...with me."She popped her head up. "Huh?""Yeah, its dumb," I said, glad to be wearing a mask."No man," she said, "It's just...you know I dropped out in like, middle school right. I never done no school dance thing. Best I got is half a semester at this shelter I was crashing at last year.""If it's not your thing...""No, no, no-no-no Spur, no, that's not what I meant," she said, then broke into a grin, "I'd love to go! Shit, thanks for asking. Gives me a chance to see what I'm missing out on.""But you know," I said, "We can't go as Misfit and Hotspur right?""Okay, I'll be Natalie," she said."And I'll be Eric," I said.She giggled like we were planning a caper. "Fuck yeah, this is going to be dope," she put out her fist.I bumped it. She grinned. Covered in grease and sweat, unwashed and kind of smelly, she was still...you know. Anyone could see she was pretty. Rough, but pretty."Meet you there or pick you up?" she asked, getting back to work."Uh," I said, "Meet me there I guess. I'll text the address.""Awesome," she said.I swallowed, watching her work, her face hidden under the body of the motorbike.It was then a kid burst around the corner, spilling over onto his hands.It was the lion faced boy, panting hard."They grabbed Jenny!"Misfit burst out from under her bike."What?"The kid was panting hard, his shirt torn. "Back alley, Militia types. I barely got away. Quick, hurry, they're hurting her!"Me and Misfit exchanged a look. She snatched up her mask, pulled down the grinning skull face. Clutched her spanner."Let's fucking go!"
We dashed around the corner, the lion boy leading us back the way he'd come. It was a block down from the community center. They'd gone down to a corner store. To pick up candy. A couple of those guys, big, beefy militia guys, had a four-armed girl held between them. A third had an electric razor. He was clipping away her hair. chopping it down. The girl, Jenny, a skinny girl maybe ten, sobbed. Her lip had been split and an eye was closing up with an ugly bruise.They were big guys, much bigger than the skinny kid, with pot bellies and beefy arms. Their eyes were hidden behind their raybans.One of them was watching the other three. Either keeping an eye out or giving the orders.She was helpless, locks of hair falling from her scalp."A freak should look like a freak," one of them said, twisting her arm hard.She screamed and got a hard slug in the face, then a glob of spit. One of her pigtails sprung free, dangling from a fist.A murderous roar went through my skull.The look out, or maybe the boss, saw us coming. He put a hand to his side. He had a gun.He had a badge too.Cop.>put her down!>fuck this, put them down
>>4865611>Tell Misfit to get a camera on them>Tell them they got 3 seconds before they find out what prison does to "men" that hurt kids after going to the hospital>Drag them to the inciter and ask if she is fine with grown men beating children.>Kick ass and take down names so they can go out to the public.
>>4865611>put her down!
>>4865611>fuck this, put them down
>>4865611>put her down!we can't afford to be violent here, it'd just fuel their narrative. last resort only
>>4865611>fuck this, put them downInmovilize the most threatening and intimidate the others (not bone breaking plz)
>Put effort into write in>Nothing.>>4865611whatever.>put her down!
>>4865644Are you an idiot? These are guys that would require bones to be broken. Do you think not making a proper write in or plan would overwrite base votes?
>>4865656Brain smallHit someone but not too hard
>>4865665Write it in then, because otherwise its default smash Spur smash.
>>4865644>>4865615Changing vote to this
>>4865611this>>4865653if my write in doesn't win. Put my vote to my write in if it does>>4865615
>>4865617>>4865633>>4865653locking in 'put her down'
>>4865611>>fuck this, put them down
"Put her down," I said.A flash-bang grew in Misfit's fist, hot light streaming out from between her knuckles.The guy with the razor looked to the cop, backing up a step, Jenny's pigtail swinging from his hand. The girl sobbed hard between the two men.It was a sight would make anyone sick."Let's just fuck these guys up," Misfit said. I held out my hand.The cop chewed his tongue, hand on his gun."You like beating on little girls?" I snarled."No little girls here, just a freak," he said."I'm giving you a chance to walk away," I said, "You draw on me, you're going to have a problem."He sucked on his tooth, sizing me up. The hand rose up from the holster, away from the gun.Then something bright and shining streaked past me.The cop's arm came off at the elbow with a spray, so fast he didn't have time to scream. The blade lodged in the knee of a man holding a girl, splitting it open. The handle of the tomahawk stood out from his leg, the carved wood flecked with blood. The cop slumped to the ground, staring at the leaking stump beneath his elbow."In older times, the hands of a thief would be cut off as a warning to other thieves."I looked back. Dallas Parker came walking down, flanked by a couple of people I didn't know. He wore a green tactical vest, his black hair pulled back in a Native style braid."For one who attacks a child, a sharper lesson should be taught," he stepped and shimmered and I felt him move past me, fast with a fluid grace. He grabbed the handle of his tomahawk, sliding past the man, wrenching it from his knee."Christ," the leg came half off.It wasn't speed exactly. I don't know what to call it. But it had been fast, graceful, and terrifying. The man with the electric razor ran, while Jenny kicked at the guy holding her prisoner.Dallas' bloody tomahawk blade touched the back of the last man's neck."Dallas," I said."Don't worry Hotspur, I won't kill them," he said. The two with him, his flunkies stepped forward. One was a black girl with silver eyes and a pouty mouth, her hair in twin braids corded around over her shoulders and tied together at the tips. She wore a dark tactical vest and carried some kind of sword on her back. The other was a white guy with wild brown hair, missing half an ear and a chunk of a nostril, face scarred up like he'd lost a fight with a dog.Dallas grabbed the last militia guy by the hair, pulled his head back. Jenny broke free and ran to her lion-faced friend."In older times," he said, "I would have taken your scalp. But we have more," His eyes flicked to me, "Civilized ways now."The militia guy pissed himself in Dallas' grip."We are the Vanguard Army," he said, "Go tell your people."He let go and the guy ran, abandoning his wounded friends.
"Pyrokine, War-Wolf," he said, "Make sure those men don't bleed to death."He holstered his tomahawk, stepping over the man missing half his leg.Rage tightened my fists."I was talking them down," I said.Dallas looked thoughtful."Maybe," he said.He walked back the way he'd come.>stop him>let him go
>>4865720>let him go
>>4865720>let him goEven if we win, what then? Call the DPA and give that black site some fresh test subjects? Also it's not like we haven't dismembered anyone before. This isn't going to end well though.Call him out for subjecting an innocent child to that level of violence, if he keeps it up kids like this won't have any choice but to become soldiers in his war.
>>4865720switching>>4865733to this write in>>4865730
sorry guys had to deal with something on my end
>>4865730locking this in
"Dallas," I said.He stopped. "I don't want to fight you, Hotspur," he said.I didn't want to fight him either, but I couldn't do nothing."You didn't have to tear them apart, not in front of kids," I said.Jenny sniffed against the lion boy, half her hair shaved down to bristles."They'll see worse before long," he said, "And I won't hesitate to defend my people. It's to your credit you tried to talk them down, but thugs only understand the language of thugs. Now they know any attempt to hurt the innocent in our number will be met swiftly and decisively. They'll tell the story to their friends.""And come back heavier," I said, "Then you'll get the war you want.""I don't want a war," he said, "But I won't be blind to the one coming."Behind me Pyrokine, the shaggy haired white guy with the cut up face, pressed a hand to the stump of the cop's arm. The cop howled as smoke rose from where the hand was clamped. "You jus' settle down now," Pyrokine said in a thick Cajun mush-mouth while cauterizing his wound. Further down the black woman Dallas had called War-Wolf made a tourniquet for the man with the half-missing leg. She tightened it hard until the blood slowed to a near stop.Sneering down, her pouty lip drew back to show long bright fangs.Soldiers of the Vanguard Army."And as for Dallas Parker," he said, "I have a new name.""Yeah?" I said."From now on you can call me 'Nemesis'," he said, "For I will be our retribution."And Nemesis strode out of the alley, a cold wind howling after him.
It was a bad way to leave things at Queen Rat's but what could I do? More and more I found myself in helpless situations.Misfit took the kids back to the center. She was good with kids, she got Jenny to stop crying right away. The Lion Boy, who everyone called Owen, was trying to cheer her up too."Your hair looks like my tail!" Owen said, pulling out his tufted tail and swinging it around. It got her smiling.Before I left I took Misfit aside. "Keep an eye on things down here," I said, "I don't trust these Vanguard guys.""On it chief," she said. We arranged to meet at school around six.Put me in a fight and I could take it to the ground. Put me against the evils men do, and I became what I am, a fifteen year old boy on the cusp of sixteen, with few answers and no clear way to act on them.Somethings were too big to fight head on.Nemesis, Dallas Parker, wasn't entirely wrong. Neither were the Committee. Para-folk were dangerous, I'd seen enough of it to know it. They had a right to be scared. But Nemesis was right too, there were plenty of innocent people with powers, harmless kids who had become the target of psychos like the Humanity First Militia.And over them both hung the sword of the government, ready to fall.I was trying to walk a line but the longer I walked it the more crooked it got.Whatever the trouble coming, at least I had something to take my mind off things. The dance tonight.Getting home I got changed.Was this a date? I know Misfit likes girls, but she once said she was only about 80% gay or something. I don't know what that meant. She was older than me but not by a lot. Close to eighteen, I think. She was pretty too. Did I like her? As a friend, yeah. I trusted her with my life. More than a friend, a comrade, a blood brother. Blood sister. Uh...But did I 'like her' like her?I swallowed, checking my hair. I'd definitely, you know, noticed things about her. Not just the physical stuff but...she was kind. A lot kinder than she wanted to admit. She was goofy too. She wanted to be a badass and she kind of was, but not in the way she thought.She was weird, weird in the way I felt weird.It was weird thinking about her."You going to wear a tie?" Dad asked."It's a dance not a job interview," I said, pulling on my denim jacket."Put on some cologne at least," he said. He got out one of his, had a smokey, whiskey scent. "Dab it," he said, "On your wrists and your neck. Trust me!""Kid, you need a shave," he said. I was getting whiskers at the corner of my lips, the start of sideburns. "And a hair cut." He played with my wavy hair. It was starting to become a mane. He leant me his razor. The hair cut would have to wait. He put some styling gel in my hair to tame it a little. I don't know, I didn't like how stiff it made my hair.He checked me in the mirror, squeezing my shoulder.
"You're becoming a man," he said.The scar on my cheek was bright, the bags under my eyes heavy. If I looked like a man it wasn't in a good way."You ready to go?" he said.I shrugged. I guess so.My palms were sweaty. I rubbed them on my legs."Come on heart breaker," he said.Miss Flores was waiting for us downstairs.She was in a purple dress and crop jacket."Looking good, stud," she said to Dad."Looking better, babe," he said, pulling her in for a kiss.Oh God. This was worse than what I went through with Jimmy. Please let Salamander show up looking for a fight. Please God.But God doesn't answer my prayers.We got into her car. Our living room was now home to boxes of her junk, our bathroom housing her cat until it and Mangy could learn to get along."Let's hit the road," she said, and put on some kind of prog-rock.Great.A great start to the night.
>>4865859There's always time to say we're no longer comfortable with the Florinator moving in.Also if we had taken those guys down Dallas wouldn't have maimed them.
The school was dark but the hall lights were bright.Cars parked up and down the road, kids getting out giggling all nervous.Mr Getty manned the door, stamping hands. Dad and Miss Flores went in without me. I'd hang out here, waiting for my date.Come on Misfit.There were a lot more students in my school than I had realized. Most faces I only half recognizd but then I'd been missing a lot of school."Yo Eric!" Rufus waved. He had a black girl with him, I didn't know her. Must have found a date. She was cute. "You know Shonique, right?" he said."Maybe, kinda," I said, shaking her hand."Your date here yet?" he said."His date doesn't exist," Zeke came out of the dark with Hunter. A 'pair' of lone wolves. "Hey Shonique, you gave this guy a pity date?""He just looked so sad," she said with a mocking pout, punching Rufus in the arm."You guys seen Ivy?" Hunter asked.Ivy. My belly tightened."Nah, not yet," Rufus said, "Dane neither. Maybe they decided to skip the dance and go straight to the, heh, you know."My fist tightened."Yo," Dane came up the path alone, "Someone say my name?""You seen Ivy?" I asked a bit too quick. Dane snapped his fingers and pointed inside."Helping set up," he said.We didn't wait long before Ayesha showed up with Malcolm, and Kaylee with Daphne."Looks like the gang's all here," Kaylee said, holding Daphne's hand."We're just waiting for Eric's 'date'," Zeke said, "Five bucks says he gets a DM saying she had to cancel last minute.""Yeah?" Kaylee looked too happy about the idea.I was about to say something when the roar of a motorbike ripped over the night. Instead I grinned.She didn't look for a park, she came up right over the grass, engine revving. The others went back a step as she came to a stop in front of us, motorbike rumbling. She kicked out the stand and planted it in the grass, switched off the engine and stepped up, pulling off her helmet.Under her motorcycle jacket she wore a white dress shirt and skinny black tie, tight black leather jeans and combat boots. She'd slicked her dark hair back and cleaned her face until the cheek bones glowed."Eric, damn, you clean up good," she said, slapping her helmet down on the bike seat."Natalie," her real name was marbles in my mouth. I almost slipped up and called her Misfit. "You too, hell people might start thinking you're a chick."
She roared with laughter, hooking an arm around my shoulder. She smelled good too, she'd gone to the effort of wearing perfume."So who are these jagoffs?" she said, sweeping a finger over my friends."Guys, this is Natalie," I said, "Natalie, these are the guys."Misfit grinned. Zeke swallowed his tongue.She saw Kaylee and leaned closer. "Hey," she said, smiling sly.Kaylee blushed, eyes wide, while Daphne's face dropped. "Nice to meet you," Kaylee mumbled.Misfit tightened her arm around my neck. "So we going inside or just going to stand out here jacking each other off?""Let's get inside," I said.She took my arm in hers. "Lead the way sir!"And we stepped into the Winter Ball together.-Music played from the sound system. We stepped into a segregated room, boys on one side, girls on the other, everyone talking in groups but too nervous to cross the divide. Equipment was being set up on the stage.The football team had the snack table, big ass Bryan Kusich with a cup of punch in hand. A couple of teachers were keeping watch. Miss Flores was doing a bad job though, too busy talking to Dad.Misfit whistled. "Fancy," she said, "Man, food too. This place has everything. I'm a get a bite."She swaggered over to the table."So," Ayesha broached the silence, "She seems...nice.""Very real, very existent," said Rufus with an elbow in Zeke's ribs."Yeah, yeah," he muttered.Malcolm watched her walk away, nodding in approval, then gave me a look of respect.I smiled. She was pretty real, yeah. She stuffed her mouth with a pretzel while stashing more in her jacket pockets.One of the football player's girlfriends frowned at her."Sup," she said, keeping on eating."Hey, you want to dance?" Daphne said to Kaylee, pulling her away."Um, music hasn't started yet," Kaylee said."Then let's start it!" Daphne said.Kaylee looked to us for help as Daphne dragged her to the dance floor.I looked around for Ivy, but if she was inside she wasn't in here.>maybe I should keep my focus on Misfit>look around for Ivy
>>4865899>look around for Ivy
>>4865899>maybe I should keep my focus on Misfit
>>4865899>maybe I should keep my focus on MisfitIvy probably isn't dead or anything (yet)
>>4865899>maybe I should keep my focus on Misfit>Let her know there may be trouble if Ivy doesn't show up
>>4865891Misfit's chad energy is out of control>>4865899>keep focus on MisfitWould be a huge douchebag move to ditch her right away after inviting her to her first school dance.
>>4865870My write in would have worked.
sorry for dumping all that text before getting to a vote
>>4865905Guys Ivy is here. Calm the paranoiaboner for one sec. The vote is more likely about how hard we're gonna keep simping for her all night. Misfit seems cool and all but doesn't seem like the type to go for a "serious high school relationship" like Eric. I think she's a good friend and para ally but anything else wouldn't work out. Just my opinion. I also think she's just happy to be here and wouldn't mind us talking to a friend for a bit.Ivy and Eric obviously like each other and would probably go well together romantically but I'm tired of Eric always thinking about her without ever actually interacting with her. If she's wanting to go the Dane route I just wanna find out so Eric can finally move on and quit raging whenever someone mentions her and Dane. Hopefully there's some kind of resolution to that tonight.
>>4865919That's fine, large updates are good.>>4865921And Ayesha was just on the way to school, Houndy isn't the only one out there.Irrelevant, it would be rude as hell to ditch her without giving her a heads up, hell it might not be supers but gang bangers or the rich punks coming for some payback after handing them their asses.
I'm sure Ivy would be okay.I'm sure everything is fine.It isn't like I'd already had one friend abducted by my enemies and tortured for it.Still, better not to worry. I went over to where Misfit was eating. I ignored the football players, Bryan Kusich glowering at me."Thanks again for the invite," she said."No problem," I said."Asking me on a date," she said, her grin getting a little goofy, "I don't think I've ever been on a 'date' date before."I poured myself a cup of punch, took a sip. It was mostly sugar but I wasn't complaining."The red head," she said, looking to the dance floor, "She a friend of yours? She, you know, does she prefer hot dogs or tacos?"That was a weird metaphor."She's my ex, Kaylee," I said, "And if you're curious she's bisexual or something.""Oh ho?" Misfit raised an eyebrow, "I'll back off then. Don't want to make things awkward. Cute though. You know why it didn't work out?"I shrugged. "It's fine, we're still friends," I lied.I didn't want to talk about Kaylee."A friend of mine hasn't turned up," I said, "There might be trouble if she doesn't show."Misfit drained her cup. "I got your six," she said. Then with a snicker she pressed closer to me, hip to hip. "Hey, maybe we can make your ex jealous."Oof. I had to admit, she felt good pressed up right against me. And Kaylee did keep glancing over our way. I don't know if it was for me or Misfit. It felt kind of good too, seeing Kaylee's eyebrows twitch."You can put your hand on my hip if you want," she said, helping me find it. Resting my hand right on her hip, rigt on the tight black leather. "Yeah, she saw that."I don't know how serious Misfit was. I don't know how serious I was but couldn't ignore the pressure building at the front of my pants.Great. I swallowed nothing but a nervous lump.The divide between boys and girls was starting to close, mingling starting with friends then with pairs starting to split off. The music hadn't really started yet. A lanky Mexican guy carried a keyboard onto the stage. A microphone stand set up."Check check, mic check," a teacher said, his voice crackling over the speakers.Ayesha came over, smiling, Malcolm following, frowning. "Hey, I'm Ayesha," she said, "So Natalie, how do you know Eric?""Uh," Misfit said, "Through...stuff...""Oh," Ayesha said, smile curling, "Yeah, I know about his 'stuff'." She gave me a look, telling me she knew who Natalie must be."Yeah?" Misfit said. Then a light of realization. "Oh shit, you're the girl got kidnapped! Fuck, that was crazy! Heard it on the news dude, that's rough. Man, I've been there. A couple years back these guys caught me in their shop stealing parts and boy did I get it bad. I still got this scar, here feel."She lowered her head, pointing to the top of her dome. "Check it out, go ahead."
Ayesha poked at Misfit's scalp, through the slicked back here, feeling out a ridge of skin."I think I got legit brain damage from that one," she said, "Man, its worse than gettin' raped you know. Shit, they're both bad but I'll take the one you can walk away from, feel me?"Jesus Christ.Ayesha's fingers pulled back, horrified by what Misfit had just said."So what happened to you?" Misfit said, then in a moment of social awareness, "You uh, don't got to say unless you want to, you know. Me, I don't care about that stuff. You get caught slippin' is all. Bad shit happens but it don't mean nothing. But I get other people can get...weird about...uh...stuff...um, I'm talkin' too much."Natalie cringed.Ayesha took her hand. "It's okay," she said, "The guy who...he kidnapped me. He knocked me around a bit and tore up my clothes but he never, well, then he...well, he pumped me full of heroin." She shrugged saying 'how else can I put it?'"Damn," Natalie whistled."I don't think you should be reliving your trauma, Ayesha," Malcolm said."It's fine," Ayesha said, brushing off his hand, "It would be nice to talk about it, you know, without it being awkward.""If you do want to talk, you can have my number or whatever," Natalie said, fumbling for her phone, "Or just get it off Eric. Ha! But only if you want. You know. It's cool.""Well its nice to meet you Natalie," she said as Malcolm pulled her away."You too!" she said, grinning. Then looking to me said, "You know a lot of real honies, Spur."She winced."Eric," she said.Me, I was still processing the awful shit she'd just casually dropped."Natalie," I said."Yeah?" she said, warm brown eyes on me. She looked away. "Yeah, I probably shouldn't of said that stuff. Me talking too much again, sorry.""No," I said, "No, don't be sorry. I'm sorry. What you've been through..."She smirked. "Don't go bitch on me Eric," she said, "Ain't worse than breaking a leg or something. Don't sweat it. Anyway, it happens to boys too. Most anyone ends up on the street will be ducking all kinds of evil."It was worse though. I wanted to tell.But I let it slide. She was getting uncomfortable.A band was starting to set up on the stage. Bass strings plucked, cymbals struck. Waiting on their lead singer.She stepped out with a guitar, wearing a red leather jacket over a tight black cat suit, her hair tied up high in a braided tail, swinging down her back.I forgot about everyone else for a second. goddamn she was a sight out of a rock and roll dream.Ivy took to the mic."Sup," she said, voice cracking over the speakers, "We're the Blisters and we're on a neutered playlist tonight, but we'll get through.""Sing along if you know the words."Then a wall of sound broke out.
'God money, I'll do anything for youGod money, just tell me what you want me toGod money, nail me up against the wallGod money, don't want everything he wants it all'This was not the kind of pop music the school probably expected. Shit its not what I expected."Oh shit," Misfit said, starting forward, "This is my jam!"The rest of the school was well and truly confused as Ivy snarled into the mic.'Head like a holeBlack as your soulI'd rather die than give you controlHead like a holeBlack as your soulI'd rather die than give you control'Misfit pulled my arm like she was going to start a one girl mosh pit.'Bow down before the one you serveYou're going to get what you deserveBow down before the one you serveYou're going to get what you deserve'Ivy bit the words off with a snarl, the band thumping around her.I'd had no idea she was in a band."Maybe that's too hard?" Ivy said as the last of the industrial snarl edged out, "Okay, but we got range."The shock gave way to something a bit lighter, something people could dance too."She's amazing," Misfit said, wide-eyed."Yeah," I said.>Dance with Misfit>Stick back and watch Ivy play
I'll be back tomorrow
>>4865957>Dance with Misfit
>>4865957>Dance with MisfitWe're here to enjoy ourselves not mope about a girl, fucking ask for a bro job from misfit if you're that desperate for a fix Eric, she'd be cool with it
>>4865957Ivy is cool. Now when's the boot dropping.
here's hoping Eric can quit being serious as a heart attack for once and kinda let loose
>>4865957>Dance with MisfitThis one is winning, but may As well remember our own advice and "make boxes out of our life" we'll deal with Ivy when the time comes and besides may as well dance with our bro with the songs she's singing
>>4865964>>4865997>>4866037>>4866054>>4866104>>4866454>>4866633>>4866930locking it in but updating tomorrowtoday kind of got away from me
A smooth bass line with the keyboard coming in, Ivy's voice light and high had Misfit dancing.'You got my heart working overtimeI let you in, let you cross the lineYou want my trust, boy you have to tryGive all your love if you wanna keep me'She danced like a goofball. She was dancing alone but didn't give a shit, riding the vibe. A few people gave her disgusted looks.Me, I finished my drink and dove right in.'If you want my heartIf you want my trustDon't play with my heartGive me all your love'Misfit banged her elbow in my gut before realizing I was there then broke into a grin.I could dance but it was mostly tangos and shit, not this kind of club stuff. She grabbed my hands and started twisting. So I started twisting too. Her grin was infectious, so was her bad dancing. It started just her and me but soon others started joining in while Ivy held down the stage, strutting back and forth in her black catsuit.'Boy I'm gonna get right to itI don't know if we should do thisYou into something dangerouscuz i'm little but i'm furious'I bumped up into Rufus and his date, then Misfit pulled me back and we nearly tripped up Tim and his boyfriend. We were both laughing.It felt good, real good, to hang with Misfit without someone shooting at us.The keyboard launched into a blistering solo. My attention was fixed on Misfit, who had her eyes shut, attuned to the music in a way made her face seem to glow.The song ended in a crush of drums.Maybe the last song had been to heavy, this one hit right and the crowd cheered."Okay kids," Ivy said, "The next ones a slow song. Find someone to slow dance with."She wasn't kidding, the music slowed way the hell down. The lights went low too.'Have I ever told youHow good it feels to hold youIt isn't easy to explain'Couples drew close. I wasn't sure what to do, watching Rufus cradle his girl, watching Ayesha lean on Malcolm.Misfit decided it for me, planting my hands on her hips, planting hers on mine. It was more swaying than dancing. 'And though I'm really tryin'I think I may start cryin'My heart can't wait an other day'I pulled in a little closer, hands up on her waist, under her jacket. Not as nervous as I thought. Misfit's grin was something sly and a little wild. Ivy crooned on stage like her heart was breaking.'Oh I'm so glad I found youI want my arms around youI love to hear you call my nameOh tell me that you feelTell me that you feelTell me that you feel the same'"I'm having a lot of fun," she said, "Are you?""Yeah."'Baby, I love youCome on babybaby, I love youBaby I love, I love only you'But it was a little ruined.I needed to take a dump."I'll be back," I said."Hey, don't leave me hanging," she said.I dashed off for the bathroom.Sweet relief. I hadn't realized how hot it was in there until I was sitting on the cold seat.
Sighing, I rubbed my face. What was tonight even about? I liked Misfit. Natalie. Did she like me? Was I getting the right signals or getting my wires crossed.I don't know, but I was willing to feel this out."You little cross-eyed faggot."I sat up."Jerry-Me," Howie said."Can't do anything right can you, H-H-Howie," he said, "The big retard act doesn't get you anything from me. This was a fifty dollar shirt.""I'm sorry Jerry-Me," Howie sobbed."Jerry-Me Jerry-Me, Jerry-Me," he said, mocking Howie's voice, "It's Jeremy you fucking moron. Jeremy. How many times I got to tell you.""Now stand still."I heard a zip. Howie started sobbing as piss started running. I opened he stall door to get a look at what was going on.Jeremy was peeing right on the front of Howie's jeans."Little baby peed his pants," Jeremy snickered, splashing down over Howie's shoes.Son of a bitch.>All right, Jeremy has this one coming (attack)>Starting a fight won't help Howie out (wait)
>>4868556>All right, Jeremy has this one coming (attack)Jesus Christ dude that's too far. I'll take getting in trouble over doing nothing about this shit.
>>4868556>All right, Jeremy has this one coming (attack)Nope, that's it, this little shit had this coming for awhile.
>>4868556>All right, Jeremy has this one coming (attack)
>>4868556>All right, Jeremy has this one coming (attack)Break his fucking spine the fucker deserves it
It might be too presumptuous to say it's about us but the content of the lyrics should at least have Eric thinking about how things went between him and Ivy when he was still dating Kay
>>4868686Maybe but It seemed like Eric was preoccupied with his dance and wasn't really paying attention to the lyrics.
Stop simping for ivy Focus on misfit as friends Remember that Eric's just really fucking horny since kay isn't giving us any, it's not loveMisfits not into the whole monogamy thing and would unironically give us a brojob if we asked Again Eric you're just really fucking horny, misfit is a great friend and the type of girl who would actually do the just friends with benefits thing
>>4868699Eric's had a thing for Ivy even since he and Kay were together, it ain't about that. Having a friends with benefits thing with Misfit would just make things weird as shit with para work, I'm not into the idea really
I flushed the toilet before stepping out.Jeremy looked over his shoulder right in time to see my hand grab his collar. Next thing I slammed him into the wall. "Motherfucker," I said. Howie started crying, pants dripping. Jeremy coughed, kicking at me, but he couldn't do much."Eric, Eric wait!" Jeremy cried, but the begging stopped with the first punch I drove under his ribs. He choked up, might have fallen over if I hadn't held him up.I didn't mean to use my powers but a white hot flare went off in my chest. I ground Jeremy's face against the wall while driving blow after blow into his gut. He coughed up vomit, hot down himself over his fifty dollar shirt. When I let go he slid to his knees. He was bleeding across his cheek, skin torn up and leaking, holding his own belly. I grabbed him by the hair, yanked his head back and drove a fist into his mouth. Jeremy couldn't stop crying. Howie was crying too.I shook out my fist. A tooth chip stood out from a bloody gash. Blood washed down from Jeremy's split lip.He stank, Jeremy. Not from BO but something else. An awful smell I could hardly stand."You motherfucker," I said, and whipped him across the face with a backhand.I was about ready to kick him while he was down. He sobbed on the bathroom floor among the wet clumps of toilet paper.Howie ran, crying loud as a siren.Jeremy put up a feeble hand to protect his face."Eric, come on, I-I was only goofin'."Hot rage had me shaking. I drove my foot into his gut. I started kicking and didn't stop until I felt a big hand grab my shoulder.I turned around. Bryan Kusich's fist smashed into the bridge of my nose. Lights popped in front of my eyes, the bathroom spun. I got a sense of other guys behind him, the football team."Get him, Bry! Get the faggot!" Jeremy screeched from the ground.Staggering back I got my hands up. The big ass linebacker and his friends had me surrounded. Five to one right now but with more showing up, putting curious heads through the door.Snorting back blood, I grinned a Hotspur kind of grin.Bryan hesitated."Don't stop now," I said, "Let's dance."Bryan swung.>roll 3 x 1d100+25 dc 50
>>4868711>>4868699We start learning karate, get that spiritual centering shit going on, and we can think clearly.
Rolled 21 + 25 (1d100 + 25)>>4868712
Rolled 57, 53, 47 + 25 = 182 (3d100 + 25)>>4868712
Rolled 49 + 25 (1d100 + 25)>>4868712
Rolled 21 + 25 (1d100 + 25)>>4868712>DC 50lmao I guess he doesn't really compare to soldiers with guns
that's a pass
>>4868716woops>>4868717All good anyways
man we're gonna be rocking the Owen Wilson nose here before too long
>>4868718yeah, and it's not even for Bryan its for the whole damn team
>>4868711I ain't talking about ivy, I mean this situation with misfit Ivy is fucking great and we should go for it WHEN Dane is out of the picture (ntr is trash and Dane is a good guy)
>>4868726Eric doing the equivalent of the Daredevil one take fight?
>>4868726Oh geez, we're being careful and discreet with the power use right?
>>4868728My impression is that Dane is only partially in the picture but I could be wrong. If we don't tell Ivy how we feel ASAP then we might not ever get the chance. That ain't ntr
>>4868730If we crit, would it have looked like the Raid?
bros this might have been hella dumbI got no regrets but this could end with getting expelled or going to juvie
yeah no regrets, just taking out the trash
"Well if you take boxing lessons one day you too can take on the whole football team." Eric's boxing gym ad or something
>>4868734She seems to be into older men with their shit together, but looking at us clearly shows that isn't true. Or at least barely. We aren't doing as well in school, while we train at boxing, it really isn't that great for not getting hit, doing almost nothing but running with our heads cut off getting lucky or another friend in trouble. And one of the most important people in Eric's life, whom was unknowingly gushing over him for months, knows we are a ragged mess of scar tissue. We need balance, take less hits, center our mind, because we have been getting pissed easier and easier lately. And now we have literal god damned demons, we need to switch it up, or we're going to burn out.
>>4868736Yeah...that is also a concern.
>>4868741>older menbruh the only older man she's been with is the teacher who raped her
>>4868752Our dad seemed interesting to her, or a least the college dudes, still doesn't change the fact we need to fix our shit up after we get kicked out if Howie won't back us up on Jimmy's bullshit.
I ducked under it. He swung again. I ducked under it too.Then I shot a jab into his gut. The look on Bryan's face told the story. He'd never been hit that hard. Poor kid, I was just opening up. The cross on his jaw hit harder. He tried to hit back, but he was slow. So fucking slow.But he wasn't alone and I got clipped on the back of the head. It barely registered more than a fly-swat. Fire pumping through me good dulled the pain. I turned, ducking under the next punch, coming up driving an upper cut into his friend's chin. Drove my arm into the next one and charged him back into the wash basin. An arm went around my neck hauling me back, choking me for a sec. I drove a hard elbow around and the grip loosened up.Someone was laughing. I swung around with a haymaker. His jaw crunched and bits of teeth came flying out. I was laughing.A kick in the back hit hard. I went stumbling out the bathroom door. Then hands grabbed the back of my head, my shirt. They drove me into the wall. There were more coming, the rest of the team. I don't know if anyone could hear. Ivy's band was still rocking, a rock and roll throb down the corridor drowning out the shouting faces.'I was made for loving you, babyYou were made for loving meAnd I can't get enough of you, babyCan you get enough of me?'They held me against the wall, kicking and punching. I laughed against the concrete, feeling it tear into my face with a sweet sting.Then, with one hand, I pushed off. Turning I swung a hook and dropped one, drove into the next with a jab. The top button of my shirt had popped off and I had blood drooling down my face, painting the front of my teeth.I lashed out and caught a guy on his chin. He grabbed at a poster on the wall as he went down, tearing it off. I stepped under a punch and countered with a right.There was a lot of them. One of them grabbed me around the throat, pulled me up off my feet, tried taking me to the ground."Fuck yeah!"Misfit came running. She jumped, crashed onto Bryan. Mounting his chest she rained punches down on his head, howling with glee as the big linebacker went down.I hooked my hand under the arm around my throat and pushed it off. He punched me in the side of the head. I snapped my head back, right into his face. I sprung free and onto a guy trying to pull Misfit off Bryan. I ripped him away from her. Flung him into his friends.Misfit's back bumped into mine. We stood back to back with our hands in front.The footballers, the ones still standing, glared as they started circling us."Goddamn pussies," Misfit spat, "Don't keep a girl waiting!"We went at the same time, her one way, me the other. We laughed together, a good fury firing me up.Boots to balls and fists cracking over scalps, Misfit swung wild in her gutter punk style. Me, I took them apart.The fun couldn't last though. A sharp whistle split the hallway right as I was pulling Bryan up by the front of his shirt, ready to black out his other eye.
>>4868756if it means that we won't have to deal with jeremy and his douche crew no more then I'm all for it baby
"What the goddamn Christ?"Mr Sack stood with curious, frightened faces behind him. The music had died out from live music to a pre-set list over the PA. Half the dance was staring. He was a shade of red away from a heart attack, a swollen hotdog of rage.I snorted up blood, spat out a glob.Misfit lowered her fist, looked around confused."What," she said, "You never seen a brawl before?"
>>4868760We need to go to school if we aren't dedicating to becoming a homeless vigilante with no paycheck. A few days from school though could give us a chance to change up our training plan, get our team in order, and set up for some time to get our head together. If we got a little extra time after that, we can start asking our smart people for leads to find the Stone.>>4868762K, see ya back soon.
>>4868761alright I'm sold on Misfit
"You're lucky they didn't call the cops."Miss Flores padded the cut on my cheek with an antiseptic soaked cotton pad."Ow."Without the pain numbing rush of power the cut hurt pretty bad."You think I'm going to get expelled?" I asked.She thought about it."It's not impossible," she said, "But Howie managed to tell his side of the story.""And they'll believe him, even though he's, you know..." I said."If it counts for anything, I believe him," she said. She set a bandaid on my cheek. "There, all better.""Thanks Miss..uh...Carmen," I said, hopping down from the edge of the stage.The party was well and truly over, our brawl had killed it. Mr Sack had sent everyone home. My name was probably dirt now for killing everyone's good time. He'd promised me the full fury of the school and to be honest Miss Flores was right, I was lucky he hadn't called the police. Maybe I would get expelled.I really didn't want to get expelled. Fighting crime might take up a lot of my nights, but school was what kept me sane. My friends were here.Miss Flores went aside with Dad to talk and I went outside to get some air.The front of my shirt was half-ripped open, I'd lost the breast pocket of my denim jacket. I had a couple bruises but otherwise I was fine. Same couldn't be said for the others. Frankly what hurt worst was my hand, the knuckle bandaged over where part of Jeremy's tooth had been lodged. People don't talk enough about how fighting fucks up your hands.Outside was cold. Of course it was cold. Groups were still hanging around in their fancy dress, shivering. Either waiting for a ride or looking for something else to do. It wasn't the end of the night anyone had planned.It felt good putting Jeremy in his place, but now I felt like a jerk. Not for him but everyone else. Their glares didn't help. No one was going to talk to me after this.A laugh caught my attention. Following it I found my friends with Misfit. She'd loosened her tie, sat on her bike while dragging on a cigarette. Talking to Ivy. Ivy was the one laughing, Misfit ducking her head to hide a blushing grin.Ivy should have been cold. Her body was sheathed in the black cat suit I remember from Halloween, a cherry red leather jacket the only thing she had on for warmth."Yeah its a little angrier than what I normally like," Ivy said, "But I've been a little angrier lately. I'm glad someone liked it, we've only been practicing together for a couple of months. This was our first real gig."She saw me coming and grinned."Hey," she said, "Enjoy the show? Now you know why I've been so busy.""We aren't going to talk about Eric beating up half the football team?" Zeke asked."Bunch of pussies," Misfit said around her smoke. From the smell it wasn't just tobacco. Worst she had was a little cut on her lip."It's about time someone did," Dane said."Are you going to be expelled?" Ayesha asked, beaming with concern.I shrugged. "I'll find out on Monday I guess," I said.
"Fuck that," Rufus said, "As I heard it you were only looking out for Howie.""I maybe went a bit overboard though," I said."You just can't help yourself can you Galahad?" Ivy said.I blushed."Ey, ey," Misfit hopped down from her bike, smoke clamped in her teeth, she put up her fists, "Put up your dukes, sir. I'll give you a jolly thrashin'!""Okay, okay," I said."Man, you remember the time with the Reapers?" she said, "Now there was a brawl. Or on the '88. Shit, we jus' about-"I cut my hand across my throat."Never mind," she mumbled.There was only two other people here who knew what I was and I didn't want to make it more."We ready to go?" Malcolm asked Ayesha, taking her by the arm. She seemed hesitant to leave. "Come on, I know a college party not far from here.""Hey, don't steal Ayesha," Ivy said, taking her other arm.Malcolm smiled. "I'd say you guys can come too," he said, "But its not my party, you know.""You going?" Ivy asked, wanting her to stay.Malcolm really wanted her to. "I-I guess," she said, letting Malcolm pull her away."See you at home!" Ivy called. Ayesha gave us a wave and a tight, uncomfortable smile."I fucking hate that guy," Zeke said once they were gone."You're just sore you missed your shot," Rufus said."Missed his shot with what?" Shonique said. "Uh, nothing," Rufus replied."We should go too," Dane said, checking his phone, "Mom will be around to pick us up in about five minutes.""Come on," Ivy said, "It's not like you have a bed time."Dane looked bothered by what she said but didn't say anything."It's still early!" Ivy said, "What about you Eric, are you calling it a night too?">I probably should>fuck it, stay out
>>4868840>fuck it, stay out
>>4868840>fuck it, stay outLets see what kind of wrench is thrown our way.
>>4868840>I probably shouldI'll be the lone dissenter and say with expulsion up in the air we shouldn't be looking for more trouble.
>>4868864Not on school grounds anymore, not their jurisdiction to give a shit.
>>4868864Which is fucking bullshit! we were clearly outnumbered and getting jumped by the schools most prominent group of known assholes. Everyone knows that they are just as fucking guilty as us and should also be facing punish, they can't even use the excuse that they're school jocks so they can get away with anything because we're also school jocks who should have the same bullshit privileges!
If I was getting expelled on Monday the least I could do was have some fun before then. And I kind of didn't want to go home. It wasn't easy sleeping. Not after the last couple of nights."Count me in," I said."I'm good to keep rocking," Zeke said. Rufus and Shonique were too.Misfit slicked back her hair. "If you guys aren't sick of me yet," she said.There was a party not far. With the dance falling apart a lot of groups had found new places to burn out the night, mostly house parties. This one was at Tim's place, and we weren't the only ones going, Kaylee and Daphne were already there."Are you sure you don't want to come?" Ivy asked Dane.He shook his head. "I've got homework to catch up on."She snuck him a kiss on the cheek. "Text me when you get home," she said.The others were going to walk, but Misfit offered me a ride."Don't have a spare helmet," she said, "But I don't think there's a road hard enough to crack your head."I mounted up behind her, hugging her around the waist. We'd done this before but tonight felt a bit different. We weaved through the streets, leaving the others behind.We pulled up on the curb."Thanks for tonight," she said, pulling off her helmet, "I really needed it after the last couple of months.""Sorry I messed it up," I said."Nah, it's good," she said, "Though here's hoping you don't get expelled. You got a good thing going up here, Spur.""Kinda," I said. Expelled. I couldn't help thinking about it and thinking about it made me think about the future. I didn't think about the future much. "Do you know what you're going to do?" I asked, "Other than...what we're already doing.""What, like dreams or whatever?"I nodded."Huh, yeah, I want to open my own garage," she said, "Not just repairs but like, make stuff too. Design cars, bikes, even trucks. I've been reading up on EVs and its pretty interesting stuff.""But that ain't happening," she said, "I'm a dumby, you know. You need degrees and stuff to do that.""You could get your GED," I said."Nah," she replied, "I suck at that stuff. Sitting in a room. Drives me crazy. And reading is hard, its like the words get all criss-crossed in my head. I've always been an A+ idiot. But I can dream about it."Sounds more like ADHD than being stupid."What about you?" she said, "You got plans?"I shrugged. "Dad wants me to go to college. Mom did too.""You don't want to go?" she said.I shrugged. "Back at the school, the fight," I said, "It's like, it feels good fighting.""Yeah, its a rush," Misfit said."No, not," I sighed, "I don't mean like that. It's more...I don't know. It's the only time I feel...real. Like I'm really me. And its not the same as when I'm boxing or playing basketball. When I'm running headlong into danger to stop a bad guy. It's like I...I finally exist.""What am I supposed to do with that?"
"Damn," she said, "That's pretty heavy.""Sorry," I said."Nah Spur...Eric," she said, "You don't never got to apologize to me. Not after what we been through. Whatever you need man, I'm here for you. Always."I stared at her.I really, really needed something right now.>kiss her>you're a good friend Natalie
>>4868963>you're a good friend NatalieI'm really just getting friend vibes here and I think that's for the best
>>4868963>you're a good friend NatalieHug herEric needs to get laid again
>>4868963>kiss herfuckin finally i've waited a long time for this
>>4868952Ah, about the jock privilege thing, it really depends on if there is one coach or multiple. If one coach has his crew of knuckle draggers, and another has their own, then its up to the jocks to get more or at least more influencial teachers, to back them. And that is also colored by the fact of how they get involved. We, as a pressganged member, don't have that kind of protection, especially since we haven't been keeping up with school, or our friends, and spent most of it as Hotspur, or in back alley hospitals.>>4868963Hmmmm, this....is a hard choice.>you're a good friend Natalie
>>4868980>>4868963Seconding this>>4868971>Hug her too.
>>4868963>you're a good friend Natalietempting
>>4868989>>4868984>>4868982>>4868980>>4868971>>4868969my disappointment is immeasurable and my day is ruined
>>4868963>you're a good friend NatalieHug time, just hug! Lets hope for other opportunities this night, really don't wanna get weird here with Misfit, really not reading the vibes. (Also think about the cold shower we're taking when we get home)
>>4868990HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.Time for Alternate Hotspur from another timeline, that gets with The cool mexican biker girl
>>4868991(Just deleting a duplicate QM, nothing shady)
>>4868990sorry anon, misfit is a cool ass friend and I still hope to see more of her even if she's not the gf
>>4868990She seems to be into Eric, but until she decides to remake that offer, it's better to let her be a friend. She did spend the better part of a few months lesbo fucking a reporter.
>>4868992>>4868997>>4869007is it too much to ask for a tomboy best friend you can fuck ?
>>4868963>>you're a good friend Natalie
>>4869013When she already acts like a lesbian, no, we gotta make sure she asks for the D first. Hell, if we end up with Ivy in the next few days, and she feels like it, she might offer a threesome, even with the probable coming days off, and our reorienting, I think they'd both be down with it.
>>4869013We truly live in a society.>>4869019Isn't that a little too wild? Aren't we like 15? Fck damn, kids theses days.
>>4869029>Isn't that a little too wild? Aren't we like 15? Fck damn, kids theses days.We've seen enough shit to qualify as a Vietnam Vet in a PTSD contest. Wild nothing, the man needs it, and he'll hug the shit out of them and hold their hands with caring intent.
locking in 'You're a good friend'oddly impressed you guys didn't go for it
>>4869041We love her, but we also fight with her, get a good situation to go for it and we can commit, we'll show her the power of the D when it's used for good.
>>4869041Was this the right choice QM?We'll never know, but a lot of MisfitAnons died a little today.
>>4869041She just feels more like a bro than a love interest.
>>4869019>threesomelooks like it's 20 years hard time in horny jail for you anon
>>4869063Yeah i like the idea of 20 years of "hard" time
>>4869066>Marry Ivy if we live long enough>Our kids hang out with Aunt Nat's kids too>Sometimes the three of them go out to pick up "errands">Eric loves everyone and takes care of his family and extended family by going to college>He is given a real "Hard" time by Aunt Nat and Momma Ivy>He seems happy though
>>4869074Fck you Anon, don't make me wish for the harem ending.
>>4869074monogamy is best, throuples get weird and self destruct every time>>4869088harem is very cringe, this isn't an anime fanfic
>>4869088Harem is for those that earn it, or the superhero with more scars than most child soldiers survive.>>4869094MMF do.
>>4869107do not* last*, 4chan ate it.
A hug.I pulled Natalie into a hug."You're a good friend, Natalie," I said.She hugged me back. Squeezed tight. "You too, Eric.""I always got your back," she said."Same," I said.The hug broke.She grinned. "For a sec I thought you were going to go in for a kiss or something," she said."You know I'm gay," she pressed her forehead to mine, "Well, most of the time.""You're an asshole, Misfit," I said with a grin.She looped her arm around my shoulder. "Yeah, now let's go get a drink. I can't get drunk but I can laugh at you getting hammered. And we can talk about girls because the talent tonight? Goddamn. The little black chick, the cute one with the glasses?""Ayesha," I said."The peach on her, damn. I could eat her peach for hours if you know what I'm sayin'.""Come on Misfit, she's my friend," I said, blushing hard."Don't tell me you ain't thought about it," she said, the two of us swaggering up to the house party, "And the rockstar, Ivy?" She whistled flicking out her wrist, "Too hot to touch. Shit, melts me with a look.""Seriously!" I said."I am serious!" she said, "Oh but that teacher, one who was taking care of you after the fight? She could nurse me all night, know what I mean. I could get lost in a chica like that."It was as much to tease me, I could tell. She was taking a real joy in my embarassment.We went up into the party, where Daphne and Kaylee were waiting on the couch. Misfit grinned, slicked back her hair."You know, I got a mind to steal her girl," she said to me, eyeing up Kaylee like she was something juicy.Kaylee noticed us come in, noticed both of us, and seeing Misfit smile her way buried her face in her cup, cheeks bright red. Daphne scooched closer, protective and self-concious."I'll get us a drink," I said, blushing as I went to find an ice box, leaving Misfit to adjust her tie and check her breath.I passed Kemal and Jessica making out on a couch, the pair of cheerleaders locking tongues deep. There was a horny energy in the air. Or maybe it was just me.It had been a while since I even kissed a girl.I got out a beer and drank the first one quick, trying to cool off. Got a second for me and one for Misfit.By the time I got back the others had arrived. Misfit was now sitting with Kaylee on the couch, talking. More whispering. Daphne sitting aside frumpy and jealous. I drank my second and the one I'd got for Misfit. This was that kinda night.The Weeknd was thumping from the sound system. Tim slipped upstairs with his boyfriend. Rufus and Shoniqua were starting to get real comfortable as they got a drink deep. It felt as if everyone was pairing up except me, Zeke, and Ivy, Daphne hanging out an unnoticed third wheel while Misfit coyly brushed back Kaylee's hair and Kaylee inched that little bit closer.My guts squirmed. I shouldn't be jealous. Maybe I wasn't. Maybe I needed to blow off steam.I downed another beer.
More people were showing up."Hey," Ivy said, coming up."Hey," I said. We were alone, mostly.Her outfit really was tight. Melt with a look. Too hot to touch. She smiled."Hey," I said again.Dating Dane. The beers were starting to...starting to work. Heh.She pinched my nose. "You aren't going to have much of a nose left by graduation," she said."Issa risk of the job," I said."Shame," she said, "I like your nose."I liked her smile.She sighed. "Damn its hot in this," she said, zipping the suit down. Down to show a bit of uh...I tried not to stare."How's Dane?" I said.She smiled. "He's good."It was getting hot in here. Hot inside my head. Beer didn't really cool it down but I had another."Are you okay?" she asked.I swallowed. "Ah-ha," I said.She sipped her beer. "Liar," she said, "We haven't hung out in a while have we?"No. We hadn't."It's been hard," she said, "Between work and the band. But! Good news is its only another month before I can file for emancipation. Then I'll be living my own life." She held the barrel of her beer to her lips. "It's a little scary to think about.""You'll do great," I said, "If anyone can, it's you.""Yeah?" she said, then sighed, "But...I really don't want to leave Ayesha. She's...she needs me, I think. We've been sleeping together."What?"Not like that you perv," she said, "She's been having nightmares since...you know. She can only get to sleep in my bed. She acts tough but...""I know," I said, "I've...yeah, I've noticed.""And Malcolm," she cast her eyes down, "You ever think you've made a mistake, telling someone they should be together?"I didn't want to answer that question."Waz he done?" I said with a heavy frown."Nothing," she said, "Nothing yet. He keeps trying to get Ayesha to...do stuff she isn't ready for.""Motherfucker." After everything Ayesha's been through he was, what, pressuring her for sex? Asshole.Didn't deserve her. Didn't deserve her peach. Peach. Goddamn.Stupid drunk thoughts. Ayesha is like a sister. A sister with a peach. Spend hours eating a...a peach.Heh."You," Ivy said, taking the bottle out of my hand, "Are drunk.""Yeah," I said.Drunk.Drunk and horny.Maybe I should go cool my head.Or maybe I should, uh, go find something to do. Someone. Heh.A lot of people had turned up. The nerds were here, most of the basketball team and most of the cheerleaders. Party was picking up."Are you okay?" Ivy asked.Ivy. Goddamn.I nodded.>go find 'something' to do>go cool off instead
>>4869128>The nerds were hereseriously? >go cool off instead
>>4869128Damn man I didn't want to drink at all. We were supposed to have a serious talk with Ivy
>>4869125Phew, saved.>>4869128Our power burns up hangovers right, not as good as Misfits, but it should help sober up.>go cool off instead
>>4869128>>go cool off instead
Eric's really not taking his own advice about putting things in a box these days. Inviting misfit because he didn't have anyone else, using his powers to beat up a bully, etc. I feel like it also sucks that Ayesha found out who he is, she was a big part of what kept him grounded as Eric and now she sees him more as Hotspur. It makes sense that he only feels real when he's being a hero because it's pretty much consumed everything he cares about, and he's becoming more and more unstable by the day.
>>4869163you're misjudging ayesha a little
>>4869128>go cool off insteadSince we can't confess to Ivy when we're this plastered go be sad drunk somewhere I guess
>>4869167We really are just like dad.
>>4869128>tell Ivy that we need to cool off and maybe take some bad desicions that we'll regret later (?)
>>4869140I think it just burn up sugar (food) don't know how they work while being intoxicated.
>>4869056>Was this the right choice QM?I try not to think of choices, particularly social ones, as right or wrong
>>4869194Should help lighten the drunkness a little bit at least.
apropos of nothing, I actually have a bunch of fancast/face models for some of the characters
>>4869128>go cool off insteadSo much self denial, when will Eric finally catch a break?
>>4869226Let's see em
>>4869226Post them. Do iiiiit. Noooooow.>>4869230When any actually cares enough to notice and care.
locking in 'cool off'
>>4869226Being doing fanart and this would be a Godsend
>>4869226Ooh. Do share.
I was drunk and thinking stupid.I needed to go clear my head.Going outside the air was nice and crisp. Too drunk to feel cold.Too drunk. Thinking dumb things. Getting horny.A million stars shone overhead. Millions and millions. Billions and billions. Too many to count.I closed my eyes.I focused on the fire inside me. Let it run through my body, flushing out the drunk buzz. Clearing my head.The stars. Seeing the stars made me think of Mom. Would she like who I was now? Would she support me? I knew she wouldn't want me getting expelled. I knew she would want me to go to college. The last of the drunken edge burned out. Everything came back into clearer focus.Getting drunk. I didn't like being drunk. Or maybe I liked being drunk too much. Maybe I had what Dad had.I rubbed a hand over my face.Boxes.I was a real hypocrite talking to Jimmy about boxes when I can't organize my own life.And now maybe I'd thrown half that life away.Great job.But I didn't feel bad. Jeremy had it coming. Better to give up my life than watch a pure innocent like Howie, as innocent as a person could be, get bullied by a thin streak of puke like Jeremy Kusich.Maybe this world wasn't designed for guys like me. Maybe organizing my life wasn't the problem. I was built in a shape that didn't fit.Maybe I'm jerking myself off and I'm really an angry nutcase looking for reasons to beat on people.Whatever.The night was cold in the way I liked, bright from the stars and a large silver moon. It didn't feel like a night for devils, whatever devils might be out there.I wasn't sure which was worse, the devils of the night or the devils in people's hearts. Whatever made guys like Jeremy do what they did. Or guys like Houndmaster, Semper Fi, the cartels and the gangsters and all the politicians marching with them.I could sort some of them out at least. One at a time.
"There you are," Ivy leaned next to me, leaning on the rail. Still had half a beer. "Sorry, I don't know about you but I don't need to watch my ex make out with your girlfriend."My girlfriend?I looked back inside. Kaylee was sitting up in Misfit's lap, eyes closed and tongues locked. Hands sliding over bodies.I looked back around, blushing. "She isn't my girlfriend," I said, "Either of them.""Good to know," she said, hiding a smile around a sip. "I mean it Eric, I'm glad you came out. I've missed hanging out with you. We barely see you anymore."I sighed. "Yeah, I've been busy," I said."Saving the world," she teased."Please, protecting Chicago is enough work, don't hang the whole world on my shoulders," I said."Don't forget you're part of the world too," she said, "Part of my...um, yeah."Did she blush? I couldn't imagine it.She smiled."I'm a little drunk," she said. Then rubbed her shoulders. "Cold out.""Yeah," I said, not feeling a bit of it with the fire crackling inside me.She put her head on my shoulder. Breathed in. Breathed out."Come back in when you're ready," she said.And she left. Leaving me out here.Alone with the stars.
done. I might be busy the next couple of days but I'll let you guys know when the next session is soon.>>4869260>>4869243>>4869231>>4869230fair warning: it's not for any of the main characters/kids
Michael Ontkean as Joe Miller/Eric's Dad
Jessica Lucas as ASA Madeline Grant
Sharlto Copley as Houndmaster
>>4869301Houndmaster's a little bit based on his character from Elysium
Eiza Gonzalez as Carmen Flores
The Weeknd as Sundowner
>>4869313Wow, glad we kicked his ass, his beard will thank us.>>4869310God damn dad, nice.>>4869292>Carried them naked cheeks>>4869286Cool.>>4869301Huh...not what I expected.
that's about itnone of them are 1 for 1, but these are the guys I had in mindthere are a few others with face models who haven't shown up yet.
>>4869277Ivy best girl.
Forgot one!Just remembered Semper Fi is partly based on Alice Eve
Thanks for running QM!
>>4869301Pretty similar to what I pictured>>4869310Dad is a very lucky man>>4869400Oh shit. Semper Fi route when. Jk still an ivyfag
>>4869313More accurate after we first met him
>>4869735woops forgot image
>>4869400It checks out.
https://youtu.be/aSzyI93e_zYEric's theme tonight
Guys, is almost time to choose another objective for Eric and I've being thinking about getting the stone back and for secondary school.It give school gives Eric kinda a break from supe stuff and the stone gets more harder to get back the more time Axiom stay with it. What do you guys think?Also, kinda worried about Ayesha because Axiom knows they can get to us though here, how about suggest to her to live near the rat Queen nest??? She can maybe move there with Ivy and they can help us out with that.
>>4870877*It Gives Eric(Also, it would be good after almost getting expelled)
>>4870877Ayesha isn't gonna get emancipated from her parents like Ivy, she's gonna keep living with them. Plus Queen Rat probably wouldn't really give a shit about a non Ora family.
>>4870877We need to change our training, Boxing got us tough, but it's clearly not enough. And we need our personal life in order to get someone that can help us find the stone. We can't do shit about it until we know where it is. Doubly so as you stated that Ayesha is a plausible target, we need to be around. Wandering the city hoping to find a lead on the Stone isn't likely to turn up much.>>4870902This, but not because Queen doesn't care about Para families, she's already lets non paras live their, but Ayesha sure as shit isn't going to get permission to be let out to stay somewhere else. Think, why the hell would they tolerate that after getting kidnapped?!
>>4870877I kinda think investigating the magical end of things with Jimmy is the best way forward. There's pretty much zero chance that the Explosion and all of our powers aren't linked to the secret magical battle from way back when. The fact that our powers responded to old Mr. Green's spell all but confirms that.
>>4870877To be brutally honest I think we need to cut all ties with Eric's non cape life. The list of people who know he's Hotspur keeps growing and growing to such a extent that anyone we're close too is a easy target. The whole Ayesha/Houndmaster situation is going to keep repeating itself again and again if we're not careful. I think Eric is going to have the admit the fact that he'll never have a normal life and that he needs to keep proper distance from normal people so he doesn't endanger themTurns out having super-powers ruins your life, what a terrifying thing to be forced on a kid. This isn't even considering the fact that he's probably on the government/military's shitlist and god knows what other eldritch forces beyond our imagination that might be keeping a eye on him
>>4870943If we could work out something out with her, so at least she can lend some Rats to check on Ayesha, we're not asking her for free, maybe we could help her out with something and she could help us out.
>>4870965Support, but there's definitely something going on with that stone
>>4870969Really don't wanna quit normal life, at least just yet. Is Eric throws his normal life for only the Supe stuff he may goes insane. Also, working for a better future and not enjoying is one of the worst feelings.Maybe when Eric hit 18+ he can live alone like spiderman did, just get together with some contacts and visit his dad, family and friends from time to time
>>4870985The only alternative I can think of is Eric completely abandoning his cape-life instead, but that still wouldn't change the fact he's on a lot of people's shit list. Long term he's completely fucked himself over thanks to our genius decision making.
>>4870969As nice of a guy as Eric is, I think if he lived only as Hotspur he would basically become a monster. If anything he needs to get more in touch with his non cape life. Also if we just suddenly went missing that would draw more suspicion to those close to him anyway. The Ayesha/Houndmaster thing
>>4871059The Ayesha/Houndmaster thing wasn't directly because of our non cape life, it was because she was associated with Hotspur, not because she was associated with Eric.
>>4870969That is way too much as well ,its a major part of his identity, but he is on the verge of cracking and burning out to be sure. But Ayesha getting kidnapped is because of Spur being around her so often, combined with Houndmaster baiting us with doing things to her during our fights. Quiting now and suddenly having more of a school life near her is a big tip off to Ixion agents. Its too damn late to quit, but we can try to balance ourselves out first, with learning Kung Fu spiritualism, seems like our soul or something is being brought up by the meteor power. So its as great a place to start as any. Plus, there are now literal fucking demons, that KNOW Eric, we literally can't fucking stop now, because if they have agents, the damage that can be done will be catastrophic. >>4870974We just got to hang around her more often. Speaking of, next update I say we go check on her, that "good college" is still barking after her kidnapping. I don't trust him alone with her.>>4871080Precisely, Houndmaster only went after her when one of our engagements fighting him under the effects of the stone had him threatening to do everything to her.
>>4870969There's one thing that you're forgetting about, this is a superhero quest.This is a superhero quest that has BLACK HE-MAN FROM THE 80'S,EVERYONE WHO HAS POWER OR NOTORIETY OF SOME KIND HAS A WACKYASS NAME THAT IS SOMEHOW TAKEN SERIOUSLY, AND OUR CURRENT BBEG IS A HEROIN ADDICT COWBOY WITH FUCKING ROBO-DOGS!This setting is a bit darker than most superhero stories but bullpen isn't garth ennis, as long as we don't do anything too retarded and dice don't fuck us in the important parts (again) we'll be fine. Eric doesn't need to give up his life to be a superhero, he's just going to have a harder life than most Think spiderman but without a cosmic force named bendis hellbent on destroying your life Chin up fellow quest anons, we will rescue ivy from the clutches of nice guy Dane one day, we will win the heart of the magic stone from the devilish neerdowell known as fucking houndhumper, and we will have merry magical negro adventures with Jimmy and his grandpa black HE-MAN. Capiche
>>4870943We do need to learn some grappling.>>4870969>cut all ties with Eric's non cape lifeThat's how we get the villain route, or at least brutal anti-hero (ala Punisher). I want Eric to remain grounded. Also, he's 15.
>>4871354We need Kung Fu spirit nonsense, and some meditation training.
>>4871349Based positive thinking anon
>>4871349Houndmaster was paid to get the stone for someone else, unless he's suddenly gone rogue I doubt he still has it
Like an asshole I forgot I based Grandpa Miller on Kris Kristofferson
>>4873096He has big brain power
>>4873096Based actor, I can see him owning a farm after service.
>>4873096We should ask gramps about what to do about all this lady trouble, dad is a virgin chad who found his true love on the first try, gramps is the guy with actual lady troubles experience
I think we should give our buddy Malcolm a warning about pressuring Ayesha into stuff.
>>4874198Support, I just want to convince ayesha to drop the dude and get with one of our friends (forgot the name of the one that have a crush on her) maybe we should tell him to grow a pair
>>4874198We're not her dad jackass, we don't go to the guy and tell him to back the fuck off as if we got a claim on her or something, we either talk to her about how his behavior is worrying or we snitch to her parents and let them kick him to the curb as is the right of parents. Then again these retards are OK with a 20 year old dating a 15 year old so maybe stick to ayesha first and snitch as a last resort
>>4874198Sorry about calling you a jackass, I'm really tired and in a very bad mood, not excuses to be rude for no reason but still
>>4874299>OK with a 20 year old dating a 15Malcolm is 18 (he graduated from the same high school the year prior)Ayesha is 16
>>4874198Yes, and in person, so that way it doesn't get tied harder back to Hotspur.
I'll either be running tomorrow or the day after, if I can get this thing sorted out
>>4869277>didn't offer our jacket or put an arm around her shoulder when she said she was colderic come on son you had one job
>>4874602Didn't have a jacket, also not our place to take those actions
"-footage of the robbery has gone viral," Priscilla Takanawa said before cutting over to video of the Black Claw standing in the glass shards of a jewlery store window. Gun fire rattled off his feathery cape and crow mask as he brandished a pistol."Avast you fools, I am impervious to harm!"Then his jetpack fired, and he launched off into the air, straight into a street light, the bulb bursting against his skull."Jesus!" the Black Claw spat, weaving around it to disappear into the sky.It cut back to Ms Takanawa's sober face. "It is the sixth robbery of its kind this week, with the criminal known to police as 'the Black Claw' claiming responsibility for four of-"The tv switched off. Zeke yawned on the couch while the rest of us helped clean up Tim's place, shoveling cans and bottles into the trash."Goddamn para-freaks," Tim muttered, shoving a crumpled up beer can into a garbage bag.I bit my tongue, kept my head down and helping out. Tim was black, gay, and a part-time volunteer with the Committee of Community Vigilance. No point arguing with him."When are your parents home?" I asked instead.He checked his phone. "Another hour," he said, "They're flying in from San Antonio."While the rest of us were working Rufus came sneaking down stairs, pulling on his jacket. He looked kind of fidgety. He went to the kitchen and started on some dishes. About ten minutes later Shonique snuck down after him. They took up opposite sides of the room, spying a glance across at each other when they thought no one was looking. Rufus' face was hot and he fought away a grin. Shonique was smiling, blushing, trying to focus on talking to Ivy.Damn. Ok, good for them.Me, I hadn't planned to stay the night, but after Ivy had started throwing up after too many vodkas I felt obligated to stay. She had a strained smile and red pits under her eyes said the threat of violence wasn't far away, and glumly sat over a plate of bacon and eggs without the appetite to eat it as Shonique talked into her ear, Daphne listening along.Some had bounced back better."Good morning!" Misfit came out bright and bouncing, her tie lost, her shirt untucked. A left over bottle of beer ended up in her hand then down her throat, the stale brew guzzled up. She whipped the bottle into the bin.Out from behind her came Kaylee, blushing, wearing Misfit's motorcycle jacket. It hung as long as a summer dress on her.I don't know what they'd done last night other than make out.I tried really hard to quiet the spitting jealous snake rising up inside me.Misfit took a seat next to Ivy, winked at Kaylee, and took some bacon from the pile Tim's boyfriend had fried. She wolfed into the hard fried bacon as Kaylee shuffled up. She tugged on Misfit's sleeve."So um, you'll call?" Kaylee asked her, "I'll be free all day if you want to, y'know, hang out or something."
"Sure I will," Misfit said, "After I deal with some shit down south side I'll totes shoot you a text. I'm working a security gig is all and...ah its too boring to go into."Misfit pecked Kaylee on the cheek, just as she yanked the jacket off her shoulders. Kaylee blushed."I'll need this babe," she said with a wink as she swung it around and pulled it on.With a piece of bacon in the corner of her mouth, Misfit swaggered over."Catch you around, Eric," she said, "I'll let you know if anything goes on with that thing.""See you dude," I said. We knocked fists then elbows, then she pulled me into a tight hug, kissed my cheek."Keep your head," she said."You too," I said.As she walked out she started singing loudly and off-key. "I got something to say! I killed a baby today, and it doesn't matter much to me, so long as its dead!""Sweet lovely death, I'm waiting for your breath..."It trailed off to the sound of a motorbike starting up."You got weird friends," Rufus said.Yeah.Hopefully I wouldn't lose half of them tomorrow, if I was expelled.We made our goodbyes before Tim's parents were home. I had a lot to think about, and plenty to do.Start of the day was as good a time as any to figure it out.>pick a primary and secondary focus>focus on tracking down the Stone>work with Jimmy Green and the mysteries around him>up my training, both my powers and martial arts, I need to be razor sharp>I'd been letting my social and school life slip, maybe I need to work on it>I'd given crime fighting a break, time to crack down on the gangs and para-criminals again
>>4878205>I'd been letting my social and school life slip, maybe I need to work on itwe gotta talk to Ivy for real, and stabilize our school situation>work with Jimmy Green and the mysteries around him
>>4878205>work with Jimmy Green and the mysteries around himI'd given crime fighting a break, time to crack down on the gangs and para-criminals againMagic and crime, then grades, worst comes to pass we can always get a GED
>>4878205>work with Jimmy Green and the mysteries around him>I'd been letting my social and school life slip, maybe I need to work on itFuck the stone, we'll always be hunted if we have it. We need to figure out our personal shit because we're gonna lose it. Our temper is getting dangerous.
>>4878234I think it's time we let some of our "unsavory" contacts in the underworld know that ixiom and more importantly that faggot houndhumper! Have the stone currently. Let's see how they like being manhunted for weeks on end for a mystery rock
People might dismiss my reason for wanting to talk to Ivy as just me being an Ivyfag, but Eric is also an Ivyfag. I'm tired of reading about Eric getting butthurt every time he sees her and Dane together, and I just want him to confess. Even if he gets rejected at least he can move on and stop dwelling on her. And if she reciprocates then something nice can happen to Eric's personal life for the first time in too long.
>>4878257I too am an ivifag and I believe this to be a terrible idea, we're already strained in our friendships with the group due to that bitch Kaylee and the threat of expulsion. Imagine how much worse it would be if we became known as the guy who stole/tried to steal a friend's girlfriend who WE encouraged to ask out!We would never be trusted again and everyone would RIGHTLY stay the hell away from us because you can't ever trust the fag who's capable of doing that to someone
>>4878279Nah man. Ivy isn't anyone's property, she can make her own decisions. Just because they've been hanging out and went to the dance together doesn't meant they're official. Hiding our feelings for her when it's eating Eric up inside is just being a pussy. If she's serious about Dane then she'll reject Eric.
Locking inPrimary>work with JimmySecondary>improve social/school life
Whatever was going on with Jimmy Green needed dealing with, if only so I could get a good night's sleep.But I'd also been letting things slip with my friends, with school.School. I really didn't want to get expelled.Put me up against the Outfit and all its goons before you sit me down in Principal Wrightson's office again. The smiling killer.But before any of that I had to talk to Dad.Dragging my way home, he was waiting for me downstairs. Or actually he was shovelling snow off the side walk, but it ended up the same thing."Hey kid, enjoy yourself last night?" he said, shovel scrapping the side walk. It was cold out, he wore a beanie. Dad was a tough guy in a lot of ways, he'd been working construction most of his life and in all kinds of weather too. It was the emotional stuff he couldn't deal with, and he avoided looking me in the eye."Yeah, it was fun," I said. I picked the bandaid off my knuckle. Where ever Jeremy Kusch was he was now missing a splinter off his front tooth."Fun," he said, "Getting into a fight shouldn't be your idea of fun. What happened to slow dancing and kissing girls?""I do that too," I said."Carmen said you might get expelled.""She's going to fight for you, but..." now Dad looked me in the eye, "Kid, if you get expelled, I'm sending you back to Indiana.""What?" I said.He put up a hand like it might calm me down. It didn't work. "Everything you get up too isn't worth throwing away your life," he said, "And I can't keep you from it. Maybe I'm not strong enough. You got your mother in you, she was like that too. When she had her mind set on something there was no stopping her. But you've got to get your life under control.""I can't get through to you, maybe your grandparents can.""You're going to ship me off?" I said, "You can't do that!""If you get expelled," he said, "Or if you drop out.""We've talked about why I've got to do this," I said, "Dad, you can't send me-"Dad threw his shovel into the snow, angry like I hadn't seen him before."That was before you put a bunch of kids in the hospital!"I swallowed. "They had it coming," I said."Maybe," he said, glaring at the shovel in the snow, "But something has to change kid, before you have it coming too."
I spent Sunday dreading Monday.It wasn't easy taking my mind off things. Carmen and Dad didn't talk about it, and I didn't talk to them. They spent most of the day unpacking her shit. Moving her in. When they let her cat 'Piper' out of the bathroom it immediately hissed at Mangy and dashed back in. Mangy went and his under my bed, growling at the door.Great.Dinner was take out, Popeye's.Dinner I got a text from Jimmy.Jimmy - I'm visiting Pops tomorrow after school.I texted back a thumbs up.I did the dishes, washed up.It was when going to bed I got a knock on the door."Hey," Carmen said, "Can we talk?"I was half way into pulling off my shirt. "What about?"She stepped in. "Joe told me about your talk," she said, "He told you I'm going to vouch for you?"I nodded."Good," she said, "Eric...I know this is strange for you. I'm not your mom and I don't...I'm not trying to be. But you are one of my kids and I'm going to do everything I can for you.""I want you to know," she said, "And if I ever step out of line, tell me. This is weird for me too."She smiled. "I hadn't planned to fall in love with anyone," she said, "I never imagined it would be to a single father with a kid. So, I'm trying to say this is an adjustment for me too.""Ok," I said."Good night, Eric," she said."Good night, uh, Carmen," I said.When she left I closed the door and took my shirt off. She didn't need to see my scars.The one on my belly was the nastiest, it had warped one of my pecks a little. I didn't want more.If only I was one of those heroes who could put themselves back together without a mark. But I was who I was, I'd just have to be more careful.Mangy curled up in the crook of my neck and shoulder, purring in my ear.It was easier to sleep with the cat around, I thought.The shadows never seemed...so deep...
"It was a close thing."Mrs Wrightson smiled over her desk. Mr Getty smiled behind her.I'd been here before."If you didn't have Mr Nfume and Miss Flores behind you."She was being metaphorical as well as literal. Mr Nfume stood behind me to my left, Miss Flores behind me to the right."But something must be done. You'll have an in-school suspension," she said, "For the next week."It was better than being expelled."What about the others?" I said, "Jeremy-""Mr Kusich has been expelled," Mrs Wrightson said, "In light of his history and what he did to young Howard, we didn't have any other choice."Something good had happened at least."We gave the kid a lot of rope," Mr Getty said, "Shame he hanged himself on it.""And the football team?" I said."Some have suspensions, others have detentions," she said, "Oh and your friend, Natalie Rodriguez? Banned from the school premises."Made sense.Mrs Wrightson leaned over the table."This is your last chance, Mr Miller," she said, "If you find yourself sitting in that chair again, you'll need to find yourself a new school.""Yes ma'am," I said."Now, back to class with you, and good luck with your next game. Keep up the winning streak!"There it was, the privilege of being a jock. It wasn't something I was used to.When I left it was with Mr Nfume stalking behind me."You think it was easy, Miller?" he said, "Getty wanted to fry your ass.""I appreciate it, sir," I said."Let me make one thing clear, kid," he said, "If it comes between you playing ball and you doing well in school, I want you to pick school. Got me? I've seen your grades slip. You better fix it. Find a tutor or someone.""Will do sir."He kept his glare on me like he didn't buy what I was saying.He was right though, my grades were slipping.>a tutor was a good idea, maybe ask Chad for notes>a tutor was a good idea, maybe Ayesha could help>nah, I can do this on my own
>>4878363>a tutor was a good idea, maybe ask Chad for notesAyesha's smart but she's not a NERDalso with her tutoring we'd be too horny to concentrate.
>>4878363>a tutor was a good idea, maybe Ayesha could help
>>4878363>a tutor was a good idea, maybe ask Chad for notesNo girls until we jack off, Chad is the way,he's already proven to be a great tutor
>>4878363>a tutor was a good idea, maybe Ayesha could helpWe need to check in with her anyway. Not just about Malcolm but with how she's coping with PTSD
>>4878363>a tutor was a good idea, maybe ask Chad for notesHey nerds
>>4878406>>4878370>>4878368locking in Chad
Rolled 1 (1d2)>>4878425actually no, didn't see the last vote and we have a tie.I'll flip a coin1 is Chad2 is Ayesha
>>4878427Chad wins(also there will always be a general level of background crime fighting, just not always an intense focused on organized crime)
I thought about asking Ayesha, but with everything she's been going through I didn't want to put more on her shoulders. Chad though had helped me pull together an A in Chemistry, maybe he could help me get my act together more generally.I caught the nerds shoting spitballs at the ceiling in the computer labs through straws."Physics experiment?" I asked as Ben fired off one that stuck.Not many people were using the computers, a couple of seniors getting ready for finals and that was it. Annie spun her chair in a circle, leaning back looking bored."Hey Eric what's up?" Chad said, lowering the straw."Didn't you get expelled?" Annie said, sitting up.I was on my way to in school suspension. I didn't get to sit in class or enjoy recess or whatever. I was going to be stuck in a single class room for the rest of the week with Mr Sack and the other burn outs. But the computer lab was on my way there."Not yet," I said, ignoring Annie's scorn. "Actually I was wondering if you could give me a hand. I've been missing a bunch of school.""Yeah, you were in hospital with a fever, right?" Chad said, "I'd be happy to help you catch up.""Cool.""But you know, not for nothing," Ben said, breaking in between us, "My boy's time is precious. You got to do something for him.""Hey, cut it out," Chad said."Nah dude, you're owed," he said, "You got to get us into those cool kid parties. The ones with the seniors. The ones with the cheerleaders!""Ugh," Annie scoffed. Ben grinned. Chad looked embarassed."I'll see what I can do," I said."Then my boy is at your service," Ben said, shaking Chad by the neck.Chad gave me an apologetic look. It was no big deal."Swing by my place when you can," I said.I went on to face my in-school suspension, confident at least I'd get my grade up.But there was no way anyone could spend a whole day with Mr Sack and not end up in a bad mood. The gym teacher certainly felt the same way. No conversation, no phones, no nothing. He sat up the back with a magazine while we did our work. Even a mistimed cough got his dander up. The room also didn't seem to have any heat, so we sat shivering as we worked out sums or read over lines of Hemingway.There was no one who liked Mr Sack and he seemed to like it that way.I was happy to get out and get home. A day was more than I could stand, a whole week felt like mental torture.So when I got home and saw Jimmy hanging at the stoop, then saw Chad coming up the other way, I realized I'd double booked."What's good?" Jimmy said as Chad wandered up behind me, "This guy with you?"I looked back at Chad, bag slung over his back."Uh," I looked back to Jimmy, "Yeah, my grades are slipping. Chad's going to be tutoring me for a bit.""You want him to come up with us?" Jimmy said, "Only I don't think dragging more people into this mess is a good idea.""Hey Eric, what's up?" Chad said, "Friend of yours? Hi, I'm Chad.">bring Chad up to Grandpa Green's>have Chad wait at mine
>>4878451>have Chad wait at mine
"This is Jimmy," I said."Sup," said Jimmy."We've got to do something upstairs, if you want you can chill at my place," I said."Sounds good, I'll get set up," Chad said.We went up together than split up at mine. Carmen let Chad in, much to Chad's surprise."Uh, hi Miss Flores," he said."Oh hello Chad, good to see you," they shut the door and I kept heading up with Jim."Fair warning, your pops isn't always home," I said, tapping the side of my head."Yeah, dementia," Jimmy said, "It's why I always thought he was full of shit."We knocked on the door. "Yo gramps, its Jimmy!" he called.Locks clicked and the door opened to Mr Green's deep wrinkled scowl."Get in, get in," he said.We crossed over to the stifling heat of Mr Green's apartment. My nose twitched on the dust, the unrythmic tocking of a dozen or more clocks sounding off around us. Mr Green wheeled his chair over to the iron barred window. He seemed to have more strength today. I took off my jacket and hung it on the back of a chair."Your parents know you're here?" Mr Green asked.Jim shrugged. "No, they think I'm studying with Ashe," he said, "You got anything to eat?""Fridge," Mr Green said. He was in a bad mood, terser than usual. Better than scared at least."You boys did something stupid," he said as Jimmy started pealing an orange. "I felt your spell. Anyone with a sensitivity to arta's flow would have felt it.""Arta?" I asked."The energy of creation," he said, "The background radiation of life. People have called it a dozen different things. Mana, vril, quintessence. Arta is better. When we use magic we tap into this power, twist it to a use. It can be used for good, the right hand path, or for the bad, the left hand path. Or it can be bungled by a couple of kids who don't know what they're doing and mess everything up. Which of these three sound like you two?""Hey old man, if it weren't for you we wouldn't have tried," Jimmy said, "We've been having guests show up at night since you talked to us, and we were just-""Guests?" Mr Green cut through his grandson's protests, "Describe them to me. Do not name them! Only describe them.""Tall," Jimmy said, "Black. Not like skin but a void. With white teeth and a gray tongue."Jimmy's words brought the memory alive in my mind. The heat didn't seem so stifling anymore against the cold prickle on my skin.Mr Green frowned."We read a protective charm, from one of your books," he said, "But instead of protecting us...""You became flames to a moth," Mr Green said, "You're right. I made a mistake, one I wouldn't have years ago. I should never have let you leave without a blessing. My mind...isn't what it was."
"I've felt it, the walls getting thinner," he said, "Ever since the Explosion. I've never felt power like that, not even from Brother Ishmael, not even when we closed the door the first time. The Explosion woke something up.""So are you going to teach me or what?" Jimmy said, "You said the world needs a Red Wizard. Me, I have an overdue science project. If you're going to drag me out here you may as well teach me something. Maybe teach Eric took, call him the Blue Wizard or whatever.""There's already a Blue Wizard," Mr Green said, "And your friend can't learn magic.""Why not?" I asked.He cupped a hand to his ear. "Where does sound come from?" he asked.I frowned. "Sound is when a sound wave hits the ear at a certain frqequency," I said."Does the sound wave exist if there's no ear to hear it?"I shrugged. "The sound wave exists," Jimmy said, "Whether the sound it makes exists is a different question.""Exactly," Mr Green said, "And you, Eric. Unfortunately you were born deaf. Most people are. But the magic still exists. It never went away, only the magicians did.""The Company made people blind, deaf, and mute," he said, "It started with their own people then sprerad out to the rest. A blood line ended here, another bred out there. Until they had a monopoly on its power, but even then it faded. Faded out and now only lingers. Waiting to be woken up.""There are more waves than sound waves," Mr Green said, "There is the beating heart of creation itself.""But you are something, Eric," he said, "I don't know what, but its no magician."Jimmy frowned. He didn't know I was Hotspur. Maybe the old man didn't know either."I guess I'll stand here with my thumb up my ass then," I said, "Don't let me get in the way."Mr Green smiled. "A wizard needs friends," he said, "Boon companions. You'll become powerful, Jimmy, capable of things you never imagined, but you'll never be invincible. For me I had Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn, with Brother Ishmael to guide us. Perhaps Eric will be one of your boons. It's a dangerous thing, to be the boon of a wizard.">who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?>count me out, I've got enough trouble without being a 'boon'>I could do that, be a wizard's bodyguard
>>4878560>who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?I do dangerous shit all the time. No big deal.I could feel your spell affecting my powers somehow. Got em in the explosion. If it's another kind of magic then maybe that helps narrow what I am down a bit. Maybe tell him that vision and that word we heard when we passed out after getting shot by Houndmaster.It doesn't make any sense to keep our para identity secret from them at this point. This dude's about to have powers too. And probably be even more important than we are in the grand scheme of things.
>>4878560>who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?>>4878568More than enough people know about our powers already, no thanks.
>>4878560>>who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?>>4878568I want it to be a surprise reveal, but if our powers react negatively to magic then we tell em
kind of tired. I'll be back tomorrow but I'll leave this vote open until I do
>>4878602Nobody else can give us answers about magic shit, which I'm convinced is the basis of our powers. Jimmy already knows we're eerily good at fighting and used to this weird shit, now his grandpa just confirmed that we have some kind of powers. If we're trusting these guys enough to go to all this trouble to help them, and we believe that Jimmy is gonna be the red wizard the world needs, then there's no reason to be so paranoid about our identity with them. Are we just gonna be bodyguard for a wizard as Eric? Fuck no. We'll have to do so as Hotspur.
>>4878560>who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?>I could do that, be a wizard's bodyguardIf Jimmy doesn't figure out we're a para after all this then he's kind of an idiot
>>4878560>who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?>I could do that, be a wizard's bodyguardIs all about telling only part of the true, Jimmy already knows we are good at fighthing so he can count on us to safe his back, if the oportunity rise that we have to show our power well do it partiacialy and if is extremely necesary well go as hotspur, or another disguise. if he ask about our deal well tell him that we prefer not to tell for his own security but that we are indeed at his side.
>>4879044(Also, yay, new update)
>>4879044I think it's more dangerous for him not to know we're Hotspur. He should be prepared for what comes with hanging out with a guy that half the city wants to kill
>>4878560>count me out, I've got enough trouble without being a 'boon'tech > magicback to the nerds
"Who were Lord McCoy and Penny Quinn?"The old man smiled. "Friends," he said, then the smile turned wry, "Eventually."He wheeled himself to the window, looking out to the cold winter sun."Lord McCoy was a two-bit hustler when we first met, a failed pimp jacking cars. A street cynic hiding a righteous heart. We hated each other on first sight. Penny was a student at DePaul, a research in the occult and other esoteric studies. I think I was in love with her, but she only had eyes for Brother Ishmael.""They were my brother and sister, and I miss them everyday," he said."They died?" I said."Everyone dies, especially once you get old," he said, "I'm the only one left from our quartet and look at me. An ancient bag of skin, my brain rotting inside my skull. I've lived too long, yet it wasn't enough time. Both too long and too short.""I could be a wizard's boon," I said, "I do dangerous shit all the time."A different kind of dangerous shit, but I was here now."It's for Jimmy to name his boons, and seal them with his oath," Mr Green said, "But it would give you protections from the dwellers in the dark.""What do you say, Jimmy?" his grampa asked, sightless face pressed forward.Jimmy looked like he didn't know what to say."Man, I don't even know you," he said, "I'm supposed to trust you with my life?"I shrugged."There's something funny about you," he said, "Something big you haven't told me. I can't have someone watch my back if they don't tell me the truth about who they are.">You can trust me Jimmy, have some faith>The truth? You probably know me better as Hotspur
>>4879851>The truth? You probably know me better as Hotspurfair trade for some sleep and to get to the bottom of all this
>>4879851>The truth? You probably know me better as HotspurAight, we already messed with magic bullshit once without knowing the consequences DON'T DO THAT AGAIN, just tell him, we're gonna be superpals anyway
>>4879851>The truth? You probably know me better as HotspurTrust goes both ways.
>>4879851>The truth? You probably know me better as Hotspur
>>4879851>The truth? You probably know me better as HotspurAight, cat's out of the bag. (Do a insane back flip and then reveal yourself)
>>4879953wait, use your super sense before reaviling anything. dont want to have the same thing the happened over's gramps
locking that in
"The truth?" I said, "Okay, I guess I owe you the truth. You probably know me better by my other name."I held out my hand. "They call me 'Hotspur'."Jim's eyes widened, then narrowed. He cussed to himself. "Of course you are," he said, "Stupid ass should have realized it sooner.""Hey man, there's people who know me better who have no idea," I said.He looked at my hand. Then took it with a firm squeeze."I still don't like you," he said, "But it can't hurt having a superhero watching my back.""So you'll take him as your boon?" Mr Green said, "When the oath is made it can't be unmade. You must choose...wisely.""Yeah, yeah," he said, "Just show me how."Mr Green's hand closed over ours, sharp bones digging into our skin."You must swear on fire unburning," Mr Green said, "To stand together against all evil, against the Druj and the final Unmaking."My skin prickled. The fire in me flickered to life. A familiar heat burned in the palm of my hand. Burned through into Jimmy's.An ancient sense swept through me. My back straightened. I spoke but it was as if something spoke through me."I swear," I said, "On fire unburning.""Swear to the living water," Mr Green croaked, "To protect the Red Wizard from all danger, mortal and immortal. To standfast in his protection and his mission.""I swear to the living waters," I said."Swear to stand to the last and fight, fight against the dying of the light.""I swear," I said, "On fire and water.""You're touched by fire already," Mr Green said. No, the Red Wizard said, blind eyes seeing something within me."I walk with fire," I said, a memory speaking through me, "Do you know me?"Suspicion in the Red Wizard's eyes crept in. His hand shook on mine. An awareness grew in him."Do you know yourself?" he said.I blinked. Whatever the memory had been, speaking through me, swept out with the fire in my palm. I went back to a comfortable slouch."So that was it?" Jimmy said, flexing his hand, "Is there anything else?""You are bound now," the Red Wizard said, but I didn't feel any different, "But there is one more thing."He reached two fingers into his mouth, slid it along his tongue. When he drew them out he held something glittering and wet, a black pearl."Open your mouth, James," he said.Jimmy looked to me with an eyebrow raised. I shrugged."This will only hurt a little."Hesitantly, James opened his mouth, bowing down over his grandfather.Viper fast the Red Wizard's ancient claw clamped down over his grandson's mouth, forcing the black pearl inside. Jimmy's shout was muffled by his grandfather's hands and drowned out by his chanting, the strange alien language which had he had rattled off the last time we had been here.
Smoke rose from Jimmy's lips as his surprised shout turned into a scream. When the Red Wizard withdrew his hand Jimmy slapped down to his knees retching, smoke rising from his mouth, blood dribbling over his lips. Fat tears rolled in his eyes."What the fuck?" he wheezed, "What the fuck is wrong with you?""A rune," the old man said. His breathing had become labored, his face washed in pain. "It will help next time you decide to...to cast a spell. Runes help control the...the flow of arta."The old man smiled. "I'm the Red Wizard no more," he said, "Now its on you, James. You and your strange boon here, to keep us safe."Blood smeared Jimmy's chin, his breathing as hard as the old man's. "Pops?" he said. The old man's head tipped back, breathing harder. "Grampa?"He took the old man by the shoulder. Mr Green weaved, his head lolling to the side."What's wrong? Grampa, what's wrong?"A smile started to cross Mr Green's face. "I'm going," he said, "I didn't want it to be so soon. My books...I left you what you need in my books...""Come on you crazy old man, don't," Jimmy said."I wish you didn't have to," the old man said, "I'm sorry, James. There's so much to tell you...but I..."Blood dribbled from the corner of the old man's mouth.He let out one last great gasp, sitting tall in his wheelchair.I knew the kick which shook his chest was his last one. I'd seen enough of the dead. His blind eyes stared up at nothing over a last smile.The Red Wizard sobbed over his grandfather's body."Call an ambulance," he said, "Eric, call somebody!"He looked back, his fat cheeks coated in tears, chin in blood, holding the old man by the hand."I..." I said.The Red Wizard shook, clamping down on his grief.There wasn't much I could do.So I stood guard by the door.
The ambulance came to take the body. Zipped up in a bag, Mr Green was a frail thing, no longer human. Skin draped on bones, the body seemed fragile as it was carefully put away, enclosed in plastic.Jimmy, the Red Wizard, sat in the gutter cupping a mug of hot chocolate, a blanket around his shoulders. Mrs Valdez sat with him, waiting for his parents. Dad and Carmen stood in the doorway, the red and blue lights of the ambulance sweeping over them.Me, I stood useless with Chad."So, uh, we can pick this up tomorrow," he said, checking the time.Probably for the best.I was worried about Jimmy, but I was more worried about what we were supposed to do now.What could we do without Mr Green to guide us. I had no idea about any of this shit, Jimmy didn't know much either.And it wasn't just the magic. Mr Green knew something about me too. Something I didn't know about myself.I don't know whatever it could mean.Shit.Things could never be easy.Dad squeezed my shoulder.I went in for a hug.Poor Mr Green, dying alone in his apartment, a forgotten hero of another time, frail with a chewed up mind. No one would know who he was or what he'd done for the world.Passing on his legacy had been his only comfort.It wasn't how I'd want to go.>head to bed, there was nothing I could do here>head out, maybe beating on a goon would cheer me up
>>4880162>head out, maybe beating on a goon would cheer me up
>>4880162>>head out, maybe beating on a goon would cheer me upLast time didnt do us so good, but fuck it, lets see hows the city is holding.
>>4880162>head out, maybe beating on a goon would cheer me upI think we're in a good emotional state to be doing hero work
locked that in
I need to clear my head."I'll be in later," I said to Dad, heading off."Are you sure its ok..." Carmen said but I didn't hear the rest of it.Something was pumping inside me needed to be let out.In my hideout I switched into my costume, leapt up to the window and bounded out.Cold air and the city at my feet, I went looking for trouble, burning out the night.I stopped a couple car jackings and a couple of rapes. The feeling of a skull cracking under my fist felt good. There was all kinds of shit going on, even on a quiet night. More than I could ever deal with. The violent stuff is easy. You catch a guy in the act, you drop him, everyone else gets to go home safe.A gun drawn simplifies things, removes ambiguity. And a gun shot got the blood pumping like little else.I finished the night hauling a junkie out of a window he'd shimmied open, a family sleeping inside. Maybe he would have just taken a couple of things and gone, maybe he'd have used he's flat head screwdriver for something nasty. Either way I left him out the front of a hospital with a broken arm.Maybe a few days on a morphine drip might help him out.I got back in late, slipped in through the window. I hope Dad hold told Miss Flores some good lie to get her to bed and not worry about me. She wasn't my mom.Adapting to Miss Flores, to Carmen, moving in hadn't been easy, and not only for the obvious reasons.They tried to keep it down but the walls in the apartment weren't thick and Carmen was...well, back in Indiana the walls had been thicker let's put it like that.So on top of nursing thoughts about all my terrors, there was the uncomfortable feelings her sounds brought up too, which made falling asleep something I could only manage either exhausted or with headphones on blasting music. Dad sometimes put on music to hide it, but it some how made me extra aware.I wrapped a pillow around my head. Tonight at least I was tired enough to sleep.
It didn't leave me in good shape for school though. I sleep walked through Mr Sack's supervision, and with a nodding head sat through Chad giving me tutes in the afternoon. Jimmy hadn't sent a message since his grandpa had died, though I did meet his Dad one afternoon, come around to 'close out' Mr Green's affairs. Seemed the landlord was happy to see the end of Mr Green, meant he could open up the space to new tenants.They packed up his belongings and ported them out. Soon it was like the old wizard had never been there. I watched it from the stoop, going over Chad's notes on Hemingway's 'For Whom The Bell Tolls'. Did they know who he was? They took down his clocks, his books.Some of it was heading to the dump, others to storage. The only thing going home with them was a small chest, small enough to carry with one arm."Yeah, funny thing is it was the only part of his will leaving anything to anyone," Jimmy's dad told my own, the both of them talking while the removalists did their work. "Left for my youngest boy Jimmy. Can't get it open though."Jimmy's dad looked a lot like Jimmy, but without the fat and with gray wings in his hair."Might be one of those trick boxes," Dad said, "A puzzle or something.""Whatever it is, Jimmy wants to keep it," he said, "It was nice of the old man to think of someone other than himself toward the end.""I never met him," Dad said, "He seemed lonely though.""Yeah, well he made his choices," the wizard's son said, putting the chest in the front seat, "Nice to meet you."Dad waved goodbye."Did you know old Robert Green was a writer?" Dad said, holding a faded paperback in his hands, "The things you find out."He handed me the book with the big black barbarian on the cover. It was signed 'Boris Vallejo' on the inside.Its all I had from the old man. It and an oath.I got a text later from Ayesha.Ayesha - want to come over?It was getting late, I had homework to catch up on. But we hadn't talked since the dance, I'd barely seen her at school with my suspension.>text back 'sure, I'll be right over'>text back 'I've got work, you want to come over here?'>text back 'not today, maybe tomorrow?'
>>4880313>text back 'sure, I'll be right over'
>>4880313>text back 'sure, I'll be right over'If her boyfriend tried something we break his legs in person.
I have to deal with something on my end, might take a while
Should Dad know wizards are real and so are demons.
>>4880313>text back 'sure, I'll be right over'I don't think we'd ever tell Ayesha no to anything she asked honestly
>>4880337Not unless we are physically unable to get to her, or were in the middle of fighting for our lives.
>>4880313>text back 'sure, I'll be right over'Dont forget the homework dudes (Gotta rise up those grade eventually)
>>4880313Switching>>4880321to this>>4880345Bring our homework with us.
>>4880351Idk man I feel like something's going on that requires our full attention
>>4880388Probably, but better to have it with us so after we break whoever's legs, we can keep going. Unless we finally come clean to Carmen and let her know why we didn't get it done.
>>4880388We'll just put it in a backpack and pay attention to her if it is
well that shouldn't have taken four hoursI'll be back tomorrow
Alright boys new plan! We take Misfit on a balls to the wall, heart stopper of a misson. Since that's what apparently got her intrested in us the first time. I'm thinking we hunt down the stone with her help, and capitalize on her adrenaline junkie nature post mission
>>4880766She got definitively friendzoned man, also casual sex is fuckin lame.
>>4880777That's a defeatist attitude anon, but if I have to hold out longer than a jap ww2 vet then so be it.
>>4880766LMAO misfitfags on suicide watch, only guys worse off than you is that one Kaylee cuck that pops up from time to time
>>4880808Better than everyone else sitting on their asses waiting for Ayesha and Ivy. I know what I want and I'm not going to pussyfoot around it
>>4880815Ayesha is thoroughly sisterzoned Only options are ivyfags and singlechads
>>4880818>friendzone, sisterzoneThe words of anons who have fooled themselves into thinking they no longer have a choice on the matter.Better to get shot down than to live with the agony of "what if". Hell even if you get shot down try again. It's not like any of these girls won't say no to a second try
>>4880818Ayesha is still a viable option desu>>4880846Misfitfag is right, Eric needs to figure out who he wants and go for it instead of just being lonely and miserable for no reason
>>4880766Gotta aplaud your commitment my dude.
I wonder if there's a para out there that can heal our disfiguring scars. It's gonna be hard to be a nevernude for the rest of Eric's life
>>4880930There was that one kid who was locked up with Thunder Child, but I wouldn't trust him. Then again I don't think the scars were disfiguring were they? If anything bitches love scars >>4880920Misfit is a bisexual tomboy who gets into fights no questions asked just because we're friends. She ticks off a LOT of boxes for me. Only one who comes close is Ivy
>>4880991I think it was mentioned that our most recent gunshot wound fucked up our pecs
>>4880991She fucked our Ex, that's not cool among friends.
>>4881106Yeah she actually said that she wouldn't go for her since she was our ex and then proceeded to bang her
>>4880991We are about 2 more explosions from Eric looking like pic related.>>4881111The digits confirm cunt move. Check em
>>4881111She tried to hold back but her chad energy was unrestrainable.
>>4881121Goddamn >>4881106As long as we fuck misfit all will be right in the world, hell we could tag team kaylee together, as good friends do
>>4881132If we're gonna get Misfit horny enough to bang us, we need to get our shit together so people stop worrying, and then get help hunting down Ixion and finding the stone. Then we get everyone and raid the place.>GoddamnAll we do is boxing with our not Spider-Man powers, we take way more hits these days than we should. If it wasn't for best Officer Woman, our medical sheet would be a mile long...or about as long as a typical shoot for a Jackass movie. And the Red Wizard was talking about some soul stuff, so I think moving on to learning spiritualism and Kung Fu should be a big part of our Eric's self maintenance.
>>4881132>threesome with an exanon your horniness is overcoming your reason you gotta chill, that's a fuckin awful idea
>>4881153True we need to get back into the swing of things quickly. A lot of time has been wasted already, and who knows what's happening with the stone, the gangs, and the feds>>4881162What else is kaylee good for?
>>4881181>What is she good forMastur baiting?
>>4881181Nothing. She's toxic
>>4881181>>4881184>>4881188Wait, no, Cuckqueening.
>>4881196Man Eric just needs a normal romantic relationship without your fetishes being thrown in there
>>4881201First off, Cuckqueening is an excellent fetish. Second, I was answering what Kaylee is good for.
>>4881188Well, should the option ever come up we'll settle it democratically>>4881196If only she didn't know we're Hotspur >>4881201That train left the station a long time ago.
>>4881210>If only she didn't know we're HotspurYeah, Kaylee knowing who we are is kind of a problem. >That train left the station a long time ago.Shit man, can you even see the train station?
>>4881210Nah there's still several opportunities for Eric to have a healthy teenage relationship. Friends with benefits and threesomes ain't it chief
>>4881219>healthy teenage relationship >thinking expanding your horizons isn't a part of thatplenty of room to explore especially when surrounded by "open minded" girlsAlso who said freinds with benefits? I mean I'd settle for it, but give the chance I'm voting for locking it down with Misfit
>>4881242>Nice girl>Great friend>Willing to double team a girl with Eric>Great cookTicks a lot of boxes.
the fiercest debates are always about shippinganyway, getting started
>>4881599Based.Anons are saving lives and "saving" girls
Me - I'll be right over.I stashed my homework in my bag."Be home before ten!" Dad called as I dashed down the stairs.It would be a lot easier to make my way over as Hotspur, but a lot harder to explain to Ayesha's parents. Instead I took the bus, wondering why Ayesha wanted to see me.If it was because of Malcolm, I told myself I'd make do with just breaking one of his legs. Ok maybe both of his legs.When I got there though, Mrs Carver opened the door. She wore a colorful African shawl and had her braids worn up."Eric," she said, hand on her hip with a raised eyebrow, "Just as we're about to head out.""Oh," I said, stepping back as Mr Carver waddled out in a Kangol and coat."Catching a show," Mr Carver said, "A boring old folk's movie. Ayesha's in if you're here to see her. Ivy's at work but should be back in about an hour, hour half.""The Terminator is not an old folk's movie, Eddie," Mrs Carver scoffed."Shit Afeni its almost as old as we are," he said. He held out his arm."You best be careful who you call old, old man," she said, but took his arm. Mr Carver grinned, tipped his cap to me. "There's food in the fridge," Mrs Carver said, but Mr Carver was hopping down for his car like a much younger man, towing her along with him.I waved goodbye before slinking in, closing the door behind me to keep the cold out.I took off my jacket and hung it on a hook."Ayesha?" I said, looking around.A sound from upstairs. Ayesha appeared on the stairs, trying to smile. She was still in her school clothes."Hey Eric," she said, looking tired, her hair messy in a 'she tried to fix it five minutes ago' way."What's up?" I said, putting my bag on a side table.She shrugged. I didn't like the way she shrugged, or the way she'd mumbled my name. When she came downstairs she didn't look me in the eye. She shuffled to the kitchen."Want a pop?" she mumbled."Sure," I followed her in, "You okay?"She shrugged. "Sure," she put on a smile for me as she cracked a can of off-brand cola, poured it into a glass.She took a sip from the can. It was weird, she didn't normally go in for pop.I took the glass. "You're bad at lying," I said as she shuffled back to the stairs, "What's wrong."She stopped to stare at nothing. Then she turned around."Punch me in the face," she said, "For real punch me."What?"What?" I said.She reached for my wrist to pull up my hand."Come on, you said you'd teach me how to fight," she said, "But you never really hit me, not enough to make it hurt. So hit me. In the face.""No," I jerked my hand out of her grip."Houndmaster hit me," she said, "Really hard. It hurt. It hurt a lot.""You're not ok," I said, "Me hitting you won't make you feel better.""It might," she said, "If you were really my friend, if you were serious about teaching me. You'd hit me. Right in the face.">I said no Ayesha>...fine, get ready
>>4881661>"Ayesha...if your serious, ask your uncle, he's the one that taught me, do you really want to think of me hitting you when you remember him?">"I can't do that."
>>4881661>I said no Ayesha>what am I going to tell your parents?>sorry mr and ms Carver but she was asking for it
>>4881661Can we combine these>>4881673>>4881678
>>4881688I'm up for it
>>4881688>>4881678>>4881673>>4881661I want to combine them and add.>Punch me first, it's my fault it happened in the first place.>>4881693Based.
>>4881661>...fine, get readyGo to punch her and then hit her with a tight hug instead
>>4881661>I said no AyeshaThis is obviously about something else, something serious because even a traumatized ayesha wouldn't pull the "if you were really my friend card" ,especially for something so stupid like wanting a MALE, SEMIPRO-BOXING,FUCKING SUPERHERO, TO PUNCH HER
>>4881776The write in right?
"I said 'no' Ayesha," I said, "I'm not going to hit you."She flinched."If you're serious, ask your uncle," I said, "He taught me, maybe he can teach you, but I'm not going to hit you. How would I even explain it to your parents? Sorry Mr and Mrs Carver, but she was asking for it.""Uncle Roy doesn't teach girls," she said, "And that's not...not what I'm asking...I..."She scrubbed at her face. "Jesus, I didn't ask you over to hit me," she said."What's wrong?"It was my turn to grab her by the wrist and her turn to pull away."Nothing's wrong," she said, "Except...except my parents are out for the night and I was...I'm..."She swallowed, put a hand to her throat."Scared," I said. She nodded."I'm tired of being scared," she said. "I'm sorry I asked you over," she said, "It was dumb.""It's ok," I said.She dropped onto the couch, staring at her hands, helpless."It's not ok, everyone keeps saying its ok but its not," she said, "I'm not a fragile little doll. Or I don't want to be. I don't want to cry or be scared of sleeping alone.""I'm sorry for pulling the friend card," she said, "You are my friend Eric, you're...you're more than a friend...um."She closed her eyes, tried setting her hair in place. Ended up cupping her hands behind her neck and bowing over her knees, teeth grit. She blinked away tears."I'm ok," she told herself. "I'm ok," she told me.I took a seat next to her."You know I've been learning how to defend myself," she said, "Jiu-Jitsu classes, some boxing. I think what's got me so angry is...is when it happened I didn't do anything. The training just went out the window.""Houndmaster's no joke," I said. I had the scars to prove it."But I could have done something," she said, "You know he actual did try to...to do it. You know." 'It', I could guess. "But he couldn't um, luckily he couldn't. So he hurt me instead. That's when he got out the...the needle.""You don't have to..." I said."I want to," she said, sitting up, "I've tried talking about it with Malcolm but he doesn't want to hear it. The others, they get uncomfortable about the details too. Even Ivy.""Can I talk to you about it?" she said, "If you don't want to, I understand.">of course you can>maybe you should talk to a specialist
>>4881813>Pull her close and just hug her>of course you can
>>4881813>of course you can
>>4881813>of course you canBut we should really get her to a specialist
>>4881820>of course you canTrue. But usually the first step is giving them an ear to talk to. That comes later.
>>4881813>of course you canbut you should still speak to a professionalI'll always be here for you but I'm fucked in the head Ayesha, it'll be like the blind leading the blind
>>4869013This post resonated with me in a deep level (Still an Ivy fag tho)Got some other post in Imurg too https://imgur.com/a/zP1AfYe Thanks QM for running as always!
>>4881859You forgot to link to the vote.
>>4881856lmao keep it up drawanon
>>4881856Basssed, we are gonna make it bruh.
>>4881835locking in with this write-in
>>4881856truer words have never been spoken
"Of course you can," I said, putting my arm around her shoulder, "But y'know I'm pretty fucked in the head, Ayesha. It'll be like the blind leading the blind.""You only need to listen," she said, resting an arm on my chest."I can do that," I said."Ok," she said, "Ok, let me. Just let me get this out.""When he grabbed me," she said, "It was outside the school, you know the alley around the back?" I nodded. "I thought he was going to...to kill me, rape me, do all kinds of evil things. He...when he got me in the car he tore open my sweater, knocked me around. He put a gun to my head, said if I screamed he'd...he'd open a hole in my head. He said all kinds of nasty stuff. Racist stuff. I've never been talked to like that before Eric. Said he was going to put his knife up my...and o-open me up to my belly.""And I believed him," she said, "I peed. It's gross to say right? It's stupid to be the thing I think about the most when he grabbed me. Peeing myself, the smell of it. I kept thinking how I didn't want to be found having...having peed myself.""I thought I was tougher but I couldn't stop crying. He gagged me, shoved a sponge down my throat. I thought I'd suffocate.""He showed me pictures," she said, "To prove he wasn't bluffing. Said I'd join the 'collection' if...if you didn't give him what he wanted.""It was only when we got to the motel he tried to...tried to rape me. But he couldn't get it up. He got so angry I thought he was going to use the knife instead like he promised. Instead he...he got out this kit. I've seen the movies, I knew what he was doing. The spoon, the rock. He used a lighter to melt it.""He tied me to the bed, I couldn't do anything. He tied my arm and found a vein, then...then he stuck me.""They say heroin, it feels good, and it does Eric. I can't explain, it was a rush, it took away the pain, my whole body was warm. It was good, but it didn't do anything for the fear. It was a nightmare. Even though my body was feeling it the rest of me was horrified. And it didn't stay good. He stuck me again after taking some himself. Again and again. Until nothing made sense. I couldn't breathe. I felt something in my brain pop and I thought I was dead. My heart wasn't beating, I wasn't breathing. I could feel my body shutting down and I couldn't think anything except how I was going to die. I felt sick, really sick. I threw up more than once.""He laughed at me. Felt me up."She squeezed her eyes shut, ran her fingers into the roots of her hair."And I kept thinking...Eric. Eric will save me. Eric will come. Eric will come. Then I thought, please, don't. Don't let Eric find me. Don't let him see me. If I have to die don't let him find me. Anyone else, please.""I don't want to be a nightmare. If I die, don't let me be his nightmare."She blinked out tears, and for the first time her voice broke with emotion. "And you did. You came."
She sniffed back hard, eyes going pink. "Everyone thinks I'm not ok and I'm not, but they treat me like I'm broken and I'm not broken, Eric. I'm not. They want me to be the Ayesha they remember, always smiling, always happy, but that Ayesha was never really there. I was never happy, I was always lying. I just don't have the strength to lie any more."Despite it she smiled an unhappy smile. "I wish I'd never told Kay to ask you out," she said, "I wish I'd never set you two up. I was so stupid thinking I was helping my best friend, because I knew she liked you but...but I...and now there's everything with Ivy and I feel all mixed up and...and...""Do you ever wish you hadn't done something?" she said, "Even if you thought it was for the right reasons.""Jesus, I'm babbling," she said, face in her hands, "Jesus Christ.""I'm so tired of it all," she said, "Tired of being a weak little girl.Tired of needing everyone to protect her.">you aren't weak, Ayesha>it's ok to be weak sometimes>so what, you want to get tougher?
>>4881949>you aren't weak, Ayesha
>>4881949>it's ok to be weak sometimesI've always tried to use my powers to do what's right, but sometimes it seems all I can do is hurt people and get the people I care about hurt. Makes me feel weak too. I'm strong in some ways but weak where it matters. You're the strongest person I know. But it helps to have someone who I can show my weakness to.
>>4881949>you aren't weak, Ayesha>"I have seen everything and more in the few months I've been Hotspur....Ayesha, you are much stronger than MANY others out there, and you were in an even worse position than most.">"Your still here, and your still trying, if you don't want to pretend, that is fine, great even. Letting that bottle up...it's rough.">"Ask me how I know.">Apply headpats and hug while talking>"If you want to get stronger, you got great people to help you, I will help you too.">"But people at my level, there comes a price at being able to fight them.">"But the biggest thing you can do is, don't stop walking on. If you can keep rolling, you'll get somewhere better.">"I got the scars to prove it, and you only saw a few of them, if it wasn't for the lessons your Uncle taught me, I probably wouldn't be here, but I'm gonna need to improve.">"Because the next time I find Houndmaster, I am gonna bring you his arms and legs as souvenirs.">"I'm thinking Kung Fu, because I recently found out Magic is real, and I think I might not be using it as well as I could."https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FCX_4OYmeE
>>4881949Oh, can we combine these two>>4881979>>4881981I thought I was missing something.
>>4881949>it's ok to be weak sometimesYou are the kindest and more thoughtful Girl I know. the things that you being thought would crack anyone, I know I had break down sometimes (like that time we had to talk with Misfit or Kay) and the weight is too much for anyone to handle it alone, but you don't have to, and we can work together to move from this in time.
Anons getting inspired tonight
>>4881994This is important, and my heart boner is huge. The blood circulates easier.
I feel like no one's addressing the elephant in the room, that she's basically confessing that she's been jealous of Ivy and Kay and has feelings for us. Unless I'm misreading it that is. What do you guys think?
>>4882007We help her first and say we are open to the idea if she is, but let her know Ivy might also be interested. Remind her that we are going after people like Houndmaster by weekly, and then the scum of the city by daily, and we might not survive. Or worse, we lose and our identity is exposed.
>>4882007she's not in the healthiest of mindsets right now
>>48820181+First a talk and then everything else
lmao have fun putting these writeins together into coherent dialogue bullpen, sorry man
>>4882031Should I try it then?
Actually, hang on, I think i can combine them coherently if everyone votes for it so the write in gets used. Give me a minuet.
>>4881949>>4881985>>4881979>You aren't weak Ayesha>You are the kindest and more thoughtful Girl I know. the things that you being thought would crack anyone, I know I had break down sometimes, I've had to lean on Misfit or Kay quiet a few times, this weight is too much for anyone to handle it alone, but you don't have to, and we can work together to move from this in time.>"I have seen everything and more in the few months I've been Hotspur....Ayesha, you are much stronger than MANY others out there, and you were in an even worse position than most.">I've always tried to use my powers to do what's right, but sometimes it seems all I can do is hurt people and get the people I care about hurt. Makes me feel weak too. I'm strong in some ways but weak where it matters. You're the strongest person I know. But it helps to have someone who I can show my weakness to.>"Ask me how I know.">"If you want to get stronger, you got great people to help you, I will help you too.">"But people at my level, there comes a price at being able to fight them.">"But the biggest thing you can do is, don't stop walking on. If you can keep rolling, you'll get somewhere better.">"I got the scars to prove it, and you only saw a few of them, if it wasn't for the lessons your Uncle taught me, I probably wouldn't be here, but I'm gonna need to improve.">"Because the next time I find Houndmaster, I am gonna bring you his arms and legs as souvenirs.">"I'm thinking Kung Fu, because I recently found out Magic is real, and I think I might not be using it as well as I could, that spiritual stuff should help me focus. Maybe it can help you too."Okay....that should be maximum autisim write in.
>>4882007So?For fucks sake man,we're having a proper emotional moment and you want to drag shipping into it, let her recover first and we'll talk about it LATER
>>4882041Fuck....I see typos and it bothers me. If I clean it up can the votes still count for it?
Remember, vote for autism or it won't be used.
>>4882041Fuck it, cleaning it up.>You aren't weak Ayesha>You are the kindest and most thoughtful girl I know. The things that you been through would crack anyone, I know I had broken down sometimes, I've had to lean on Misfit or Kay quiet a few times, this weight is too much for anyone to handle it alone, but you don't have to, and we can work together to move from this in time.>"I have seen everything and more in the few months I've been Hotspur....Ayesha, you are much stronger than MANY others out there, and you were in an even worse position than most.">I've always tried to use my powers to do what's right, but sometimes it seems all I can do is hurt people and get the people I care about hurt. Makes me feel weak too. I'm strong in some ways but weak where it matters. You're the strongest person I know. But it helps to have someone who I can show my weakness to.>"Ask me how I know.">"If you want to get stronger, you got great people to help you, I will help you too.">"But people at my level, there comes a price at being able to fight them.">"But the biggest thing you can do is, don't stop walking on. If you can keep rolling, you'll get somewhere better.">"I got the scars to prove it, and you only saw a few of them, if it wasn't for the lessons your Uncle taught me, I probably wouldn't be here, but I'm gonna need to improve.">"Because the next time I find Houndmaster, I am gonna bring you his arms and legs as souvenirs.">"I'm thinking Kung Fu, because I recently found out Magic is real, and I think I might not be using it as well as I could, that spiritual stuff should help me focus. Maybe it can help you too."
Getting a shower now, so everyone vote and add to the vote.
ok I'll try working this in
>>4882050ah shit are we really gonna call it kung fu
>>4882108I think the thing was Shotokan Karate, but the guy that introduced that was in the first thread. I think it was Kamal. I don't know if there is a difference to Kung Fu and Karate.
"It's ok to be weak some times," I said.Ayesha sniffed. "Feels like most of the time lately," she said, blinking out tears."With everything you've been through, anyone would crack," I said, "But even through it you're still the kindest and most thoughtful girl I know. I've seen a lot of shit since I've been Hotspur, believe me. And out of everything you're one of the strongest people I've ever met.""Ivy's strong," Ayesha said, "I'm me, I'm soft and silly and can't-""You're strong," I said, "You walked Ivy through Grace's funeral when she needed you. You put together the plan to take down the Creep when he was harassing your friends. When I failed and thought I'd lost everything you were there to remind me...remind me of the things worth fighting for."She bit her bottom lip, listening as I tucked her closer."No one can carry everything by themselves, I know I can't. Sometimes I feel like all I can do is get the people I care about hurt.""No," she said, taking my hand, "No, it wasn't your fault I...""All I'm good at is hurting people," I said, "To the point all I can think about is tracking Houndmaster down and bringing you his arms and legs as a souvenier.""No," the beg in the 'no' hurt my heart, "Please don't think like that Eric. You don't just hurt people. It's not your fault.""It's not about me," I said with a smile. I didn't mean to scare her. "Maybe I'm out of pocket saying this but, even though you get hurt, you get beat up, you get knocked down, you've got to get up and keep moving. Keep walking. Hope if you keep rolling you'll get somewhere better.""You want to get stronger, I want to get stronger too," I said, "You help me be stronger, I want to help you be stronger too. But we all need somebody, someone we can be weak with.""You can be weak with me," Ayesha said, fresh tears shimmering in her eyes."Even before I knew...when I thought about Hotspur I thought how hard it must be," she said, "It's why I wanted to be...something for him. A fan, a supporter. And get other people to cheer him on too. Now that I know its you all I can think...all I think is 'please come home safe, please let him be ok in the morning'."She did something I wasn't ready for. She slid her hand under my shirt, onto the scar in my belly, the twisted knot of muscle that didn't look right any more.A lump stuck in my throat, but I was caught by her eyes."I can't sleep at night because I'm scared," she said, "Part of the reason I'm scared is for you. I don't want you to disappear.""I..." I started, the lump in my throat catching, "I...I'm thinking about taking up kung fu."She frowned with a confused smile. "Kung fu?"I swallowed the lump. "Yeah, kung fu," I said, "I found out magic is real, and I figure kung fu might help me, I dunno, balance my chi or whatever."
Her frown became more confused. "Magic is real?" she said, her hand sliding out from under my shirt."If you want maybe it can help you too," I said."The magic or the kung fu?" she said."Uh, yeah," I rubbed the back of my neck.A snort of a giggle had me look up. "Eric," she said, grinning "I don't want to learn kung fu."She pressed her forehead to mine, eyes closed. "You're a really weird guy," she sighed."People tell me that," I said.She was smiling at least, a real smile. The real ones, they made her face glow. Felt I hadn't seen a real smile from her in too long.Her face close to mine, her lips, her breath warm. Breathing in the same air. Feeling her so close, the heat from her body.The door swung open."I'm home!" Ivy called, taking off her purple jacket, "Hey, Eric's jacket. And lo and behold, there's Eric. Hey."I pulled back from Ayesha."Hey," I said."Hey," Ayesha said.Ayesha and Ivy both had boyfriends. I wasn't anything to either of them. But I still felt a strange worm of guilt."How was work?" Ayesha said as Ivy strode through."Work was work," she sighed, "The parents are out?" Ayesha nodded. "Oh and they trust you to be alone with a boy?" Ayesha blushed."I don't think they see me as a boy," I said, "More a stray dog.""Poor puppy," Ivy said with a pout, "You guys eat yet? Mr Carver said there's food in the fridge.""I'll serve it up," Ayesha said, getting up."Hey," I grabbed her elbow, "I meant what I said.""About the kung fu?" she said with a smile, "I know you did Eric. I did too. Now would you like some dinner?"My belly growled loud enough for her to hear. She giggled as she went back to the kitchen. Ivy stomped upstairs to get changed.I sat waiting in the frunchroom, twiddling my thumbs to the sound of a shower and the microwave.When dinner was serve we had it together. Me, Ivy, and Ayesha, at the dining table. Ivy had changed into a loose Iron Maiden t-shirt and leggings. We had microwaved rice with plantains."Jollof rice," Ayesha said, "It's Nigerian. Mom gets it from this African store.""It's dope is what it is," Ivy said through a mouthful of rice.It was good. Peppery.Forks clattered on plates.>try to make some small talk>keep my head down and listen
>>4882128>try to make some small talkHow about that weather huh?
>>4882128>try to make some small talkThis is what kinda sucks about people we care about knowing we're Hotspur, they worry about us so much that the tension is always there in some form. Also Ayesha doesn't seem very sisterzoned after this. Hopefully we get the chance to talk to Ivy a bit for once
>>4882128>"Oh yeah, magic is real, and it's as spooky as you think it is.">try to make some small talk>"Do either of you know some good Karate places? I'm serious about switching my training. See if I can shoot ki blasts."
>>4882140I'm not really into the karate stuff, we've got a boxing match coming up and it's served us we'll so far. I think it's kind of reaching to link magic and martial arts, do you expect this to become a cultivation quest?
>>4882140Fucking forgot.>>4882128Editing my vote.>"Oh yeah, magic is real, and it's as spooky as you think it is.">try to make some small talk>"Do either of you know some good Karate places? I'm serious about switching my training. See if I can shoot ki blasts.">Tell them about Mr. Green's books>>4882139Yeah, Ayesha seems to be holding back just jumping Eric. And Ivy is throwing her game off two, possible big plus is having two shoulders to lean on.
>>4882150Bruh you literally bring up threesomes in some form like every other post
>>4882147Well we still do the match, but even then, boxing just works because we regenerate when bed posts go through our lumbar. And until Not Slenderman, magic wasn't thing. I wasn't saying magic and martials arts magic is linked, but to say outright it doesn't exist in light of everything is ridiculous. And Boxing isn't much use since were predictable now, switching it up and learning to dodge some will help alot. As for a cultivation quest we don't have all the time in the world for it, doesn't mean we should dismiss the use.>>4882153Projecting a bit there.
>>4882156Shit. Mea culpa. Your ID color is pretty close to the true threesome anon.
>>4882165Its cool, just focus on helping our boy Eric, what the late Red Wizard said is why I'm for the Karate training angle.
>>4882128>try to make some small talkhard to keep head down and listen when it's just 3 people. plus ivy and ayesha eat together all the time probably
locking in 'make small talk'
"So how about the weather?" I said."Cold is easing up," said Ayesha, "Might get a spring this year.""Before summer boils us alive," Ivy poured a glass of water, "Though I'm looking forward to the heat, let's me strip down a few layers. Do you still wear a shirt when you go swimming Yesha?"Ayesha blushed. "Well, it's very exposing," she said, "And when you're fat you don't want anyone judging.""You were never that fat," Ivy said."Yeah, but now its the other kind of attention I don't want," she said, "Remember last year at Palmer Park? You talked me into trying on a bikini and those middle aged guys...""They weren't middle aged but yeah, I get your point," Ivy said, "It was funny watching you get all flustered.""It didn't feel funny to me," Ayesha said, "I don't have your confidence.""But you should, you've got a rocking body. Doesn't she Eric?"I shoved my face into my drink. It wasn't a question with a good answer. But my blush was what Ivy was looking for. She laughed as she skewered a chunk of chicken on her fork."Ivy!" Ayesha said for me."You know I found out magic is real," I said, changing the subject. Ivy raised her eyebrows. "It's creepy too. I don't know a lot about it yet but...its less Harry Potter and more a horror movie.""Magic huh," Ivy said, "What, casting spells and stuff?"I shrugged. "Like I said, I don't know a lot. My upstairs neighbor was some kind of wizard, and I'm helping his grandson figure stuff out. It's pretty scary stuff. Ominious.""Keep talking," Ayesha said, eyes bright. I forgot she was hardcore for horror movies."Phantoms and spirits," I said, "Creatures from the spirit world. I don't want to say too much, talking about them can bring their attention. Believe me, you don't want it.""It's actually what got me thinking about kung fu," I said, "The old man implied what I do is kind of like magic, so I'm wondering maybe I can learn ki blasts or something.""Kind of a leap, don't you think?" Ivy said. I shrugged. "Anyway, kung fu is for losers.""Maybe karate," I said."Ayesha's learning BJJ," she said, "Maybe check out her studio. If you want to get better at fight, what's the rule? You need to know how to wrestle.""Ivy acts like she knows everything about fighting because she watched one UFC event," Ayesha said."Dane likes UFC!" she said, "What's wrong with that?""Though, you know, BJJ is fun," Ayesha said, "It's like problem solving. You get put into a situation and have to figure out the most effective solution to get out of it. And if you do it wrong you figure it out quick."The last time I'd been taken down in a fist fight had been against Semper Fi. She'd tied me up with an arm bar, and if Shark hadn't kicked her off might have snapped my arm like a twig. Boxing had an answer for most problems, but not those ones."And rolling around on a mat, getting felt up by fit, sweaty guys," Ivy said with a teasing smile.
"Please, half my class is girls," Ayesha countered."Even better," Ivy teased. Ayesha blushed, now she shoved her face into her drink. "So, how are things with Malcolm?"Ayesha shrugged. "Fine."Her tone was flatter than 'fine'."Are you two still...?""Are we still what?" she said. "If you're asking if we've, you know, done it yet, no we haven't.""That's cool," Ivy said, "Is it cool with Malcolm."Ayesha scoffed, rolling her eyes, but she pursed her lips. "He really...I don't know. He really wants to. I like him and everything but...""You aren't ready," Ivy said, "If you aren't ready don't let him push you into it.""But I should be, shouldn't I?" she said, "He's great, he's really supportive. He's even looking into getting me a summer job at Ixion. He's smart, good looking, funny. He should be it, right?"Ivy shrugged. "If it's not right, it's not right," Ivy said."What about Dane?" Ayesha asked, stirring her rice.Ivy rolled her eyes. "If anything, we have the opposite problem," she said, "I want to, but he's just I don't know. Funny about it."I closed my eyes. god I didn't need to know this stuff."Ixion are bad news," I said, trying to steer the conversation to something more wholesome, like evil corporations."Raping the planet and making a buck, yeah no shit," Ivy said.Not like that, I thought, but how much should they know.>yeah, that's the problem, they're money grubbing jerks>tell them about Ixion, the Stone, and about 'the Company' Mr Green talked about
>>4882244>"Oh the stories I am about to tell you!">tell them about Ixion, the Stone, and about 'the Company' Mr Green talked about
>>4882244>tell them about Ixion, the Stone, and about 'the Company' Mr Green talked about
I just had a kinda crazy idea. What if we worked with Grant to infiltrate a gang? We could fabricate a fake identity, use a different fighting style. After getting rekt by a handful of paras I bet they're desperate to recruit paras of their own. Maybe just an idea for the future if we have to because we have a lot on our plate now but it could be worthwhile.
>>4882244>>tell them about Ixion, the Stone, and about 'the Company' Mr Green talked about>>4882265Sounds like a plan that'd blow up in our face with the slightest mistake. And we would misstep, sooner or later. Subtle, we aint.
>>4882265What gang though, we would only get in with out Outlaw Wannabie and his Ninja girlfriend, or MAYBE the Outfit, everywhere else is race based. Also its a really dumb idea to go horribly god damn wrong with all the good will the second something goes wrong.
We should probably warm them that we've got a lot of shit going on and this week was just talking a breather, and we're gonna be busy as fuck as Hotspur again after this
>>4882279warn*taking*I gotta get some sleep apparently, thanks for running bullpen
>>4882279>>4882287Goodnight, and yeah dude, they obviously know we got shit going on.
"That too," I said, "But I was more thinking they're the scumbags who had Ayesha kidnapped.""What?" Ivy said, face whipping around."They hired Houndmaster to steal something off me," I said, "A relic from the Explosion, the thing that gave me and everyone else our powers.""Yeah?" they were both interested."A stone about as big as my palm," I said, "It came from outer space. A scientist I know told me it came from somewhere outside the solar system."Ayesha frowned. "Seriously?" she said, "For something to come from outside the solar system and actually hit earth is, well, the odds being astronomical is an appropriate word in this instance.""They weren't the only ones trying to get their hands on it," I said, "Every gang in the city was after it, so was the US military, the same guys locking up para-folk and doing experiments on them. There were bounty hunters all over the place.""So they hire Houndmaster to get the stone, why?" Ivy asked."Yeah, I don't have a clear answer but when some scientists had a look at it for me they said it was 'evil'. And scientists don't use the word 'evil' often. I'm not sure what they meant by it, but I know the kind energy set off by the Explosion was something else. It might even have woken something up. Something...demonic.""At least that's what the Red Wizard said."Paraphrasing."Ixion is an energy company," Ayesha said, "Maybe they hope to use this stone as some kind of, I don't know, next generation energy source? Malcolm said they were looking into something brand new, 'world changing'. Maybe he meant this stone.""Maybe," I said, "But when I met the Red Wizard he mentioned this group he called 'the Company'. Said they've gone by other names. The Illuminati, the Hellfire Club, the Knights of the Golden Circle.""The Hellfire Club was a group of British merchants back in the day," Ayesha said, "They pretty much ran the British Empire from their drawing rooms.""So maybe Ixion is another face of the Company," I said, "Mr Green, the old Red Wizard, said they were responsible for killing off the magicians. All in an effort to horde magic to themselves.""That does sound like the old occult clubs of 19th century England," she said, "But Ixion is an American corporation.""Oh please Ayesha, there's no such thing as an 'American' corporation," Ivy said, "Corporations don't have nations, they're trans-national leeches. All they have is tax havens, holiday homes and lobby groups. They don't belong to countries, they run them. It's just more obvious in say China or where ever than here, and its pretty obvious here.""Still, it all sounds conspiracy-ish," Ayesha said.
"I don't have all the facts," I said, "Some of this's just theories. Mr Green mentioned the Company came to Chicago back in the day during the World's Fair, said something about Sherlock Holmes working for them.""Sherlock Holmes?" Ivy said."Some kind of Holmes," I said."H H Holmes," Ayesha said, "H H Holmes was a serial killer. He had this place, the murder castle, where he slew his victims. It burned down after he died but...do you think he might have been doing it on behalf of someone else, this 'company'?"I shrugged. "I doubt every person Houndmaster killed was on a company dime."Ayesha pursed her lips in thought."It's a wild story," Ivy said, "What are you going to do about it?"Huh.>nothing you guys should worry about>why, do you guys want to help? I'll be back tomorrow
>>4882327>nothing you guys should worry about
>>4882327>"Right now, I'm gonna be switching my training to take on the heavy hitters with something other toughing out explosives.">"Then I'm gonna get my crew together again to take out the gangs around their neighborhoods. Or at least cripple the operations.">"I got about 3 smoking guns on the Semper Fi, her boss, and Penderson, so I can try and find someone with an in to Ixion and find out where they are keeping the stone. ">"Hopefully run into Houndmaster, take his prosthetics apart and drag him to the DA.">"Try and stop the war brewing by the Human Supremacist movement and this one jackass I know.">"Rescue the Para's and report on the experiment camps again, but I know someone for that to find the location.">"After that I'm not quiet sure, keeping the Stone away from the big interests groups is the big thing right now with whatever is being planned behind closed doors.>why, do you guys want to help?
>>4882335>PendersonPenderoseI'm pointing this out because Penderson keeps coming up in write-ins
>>4882327>nothing you guys should worry about>>4882335This is stupid, they're high-school girls who we have a crush on, not fucking superspies who can actually help, they're already dying of worry just knowing that we're Hotspur they don't need to know what the really crazy bullshit in our other life is
>>4882327>why, do you guys want to help?"I'll do my best, that's what I'll do"Just, let them do information gathering, and definitely not go anywhere dangerous.You guys can't just pour your heart out of our Super life and then tell them no to worry about it. Everytime we share something we pull people more deep into it.
>>4882327>why, do you guys want to help?
>>4882326>nothing you guys should worry about
>>4882405Its more like warning them they shouldn't get involved. But knowing these two there probably gonna do it anyways.>>4882355I kept thinking Penderson and not Penderose.
>>4882327>don't know yet>why, do you guys want to help?
>>4882327>>why, do you guys want to help?I'd like to say nothing you should worry about, but let's be real: they're going to worry. Worrying will turn to digging, and digging will turn to falling down what looks like a rabbit hole and promptly getting eaten by snakes.At least this way, we'll have some control over what they get into, and we'll know when they're in over their heads.
"Do you guys want to help?" I said.Ivy smirked. "For a second I thought you were going to say we should stay out of it," she said."Well I don't want you guys getting into a fight or whatever, but if you want to do some research," I said, "Everything has me pulled in five different directions, I don't have time to read old books or whatever.""Reading old books?" Ayesha said, "You found the right girl for the job.""We've got your back, you know that," Ivy said.There was a limit to how much I wanted them involved in this stuff, but keeping them out of it altogether hadn't helped. If anything Ayesha looked eager to help, a bright light switching on in her eyes. Maybe having something to do would help her deal with what she'd been through, and besides, she had as much reason to go after Ixion as I did."You know the school is taking a field trip out to Ixion labs next month," she said, "The science club is going. If you want I can see about having you added to the trip.""Ixion labs?" I said.She nodded. "Their corporate HQ opened up in Chicago last year, and they've set up a research and development facility out near Aurora. They've invited a bunch of schools out to go on a tour, part of their whole 'poaching the bright minds of tomorrow' thing."I knew Malcolm had a college internship at Ixion, so did Pratfall, in her civilian identity as Xiang."Bright minds of tomorrow? Count me out," Ivy said as I collected the dinner plates."Yeah, but Eric's got a good enough grade he could sneak in," Ayesha said."If I can get my grades back up, maybe," I said, "Chad's giving me some tutoring.""Neat, he's a smart guy," she said, "What do you say, want to sneak around the dragon's den next month? It's a better way in than breaking and entering.">sounds like a plan>sounds too risky
>>4883558>sounds like a planI've got someone else on the inside who I can contact. Maybe.
>>4883558>sounds like a planWe should tell pratfall in advance
>>4883558>sounds like a plan
Kinda Crazy, but we totally should tell our Super friends about how we lost the stones, they kinda risk their life's in a big battle royale for it.
"Getting some eyes on their operation would be a good thing," I said, taking the dishes into the kitchen. "I have a friend who can maybe help. She has an internship there.""Oh yeah?" they followed me into the kitchen to keep the conversation going as I washed the dishes. Ayesha opened up the freezer and took out a pack of vegan cupcakes. Something for dessert."Yeah," I said as I washed off the plates and set them to dry, "So if you can get me on the field trip I'd owe you one.""You don't owe me a thing, Eric," she said, taking a bite into the cupcake."Well isn't this cozy," Ivy said, sitting up on the table edge, "A quiet dinner, a talk about magic and demons, and now planning to spy on a corporate lab. Got to say Eric, it's never boring with you around.""Thanks," I said, taking an offered cupcake.My phone pinged.Jimmy - Hey asshole I need your help with something.The Red Wizard himself, kindly asking his boon for assistance.Me - With what?Jimmy - Something weird's going down at school. Can you meet me friday night? I think we messed up.I sucked the inside of my cheek as I stared at the message.But I'd given my word. I was his boon.Me - Yeah, I'm down. What time?Jimmy - Late. 2AM.Late indeed.Me - See you there."What's up?" Ivy said, feet dangling under her."The Red Wizard needs some help," I said, putting the phone away, "Got some magic bullshit to deal with.""Hopefully we can help with some of that," Ayesha said, "Indirectly, that is.""The further from danger you are the better I'll feel," I said."Likewise, but we both know that's not happening," she said.I checked the time. Dad wanted me home before ten and it was getting close. The Carvers should be home soon."I should dip," I said, "Thanks for dinner and I hope uh...well, see you guys tomorrow."I started for the door."Hey," Ayesha took my wrist, then put a kiss on my cheek, "Thanks. For coming over. And letting me help.""No problem," I said trying not to blush.Behind her Ivy smiled a teasing kind of smile over her cupcake. For once I couldn't place what it meant, the glitter in her eyes. Happy? I don't know but for whatever reason I felt a funny kind of squishy feeling.It didn't matter what else was going on but girls were still confusing.I waved goodnight from the door, pulling on my jacket. It was cold out.I had a bus to catch.
The next night had me down the Loop. I'd heard there were assholes hassling people coming off the L, some new street gang with a thing for picking fights with students, rolling them for spare change. It wasn't the biggest crime in the world, but I figure any asshole ruining people's nights had a visit from Hotspur coming.I'd wrapped up my lessons with Chad early. His help was actually helping, more than whatever Mr Sack was supposed to be doing in the suspension room. And he didn't mind coming over even though I lived a fair distance from his place. Finding out Miss Flores had moved in, was dating my Dad, and dedicated a solid hour of her afternoon to yoga in front of the tv helped.Me, I tried not to pay attention, and occasionally had to sneak a kick to Chad to get his attention refocused too. I was getting used to having Miss Flores, Carmen that is, around. Even if her morning squats routine was still distracting. Turns out her body didn't happen by accident. It was a lot of exercise and a lot of salads for meals. It was all fun until Dad started joining her yoga sessions.It at least got Chad to focus on the lesson plan.Anyway, another good reason to be out on patrol, hooking around the South Loop out near Soldier Field.A gang of white guys stood in the cold outside the L station, wearing that street wear drip, bunch of Post Malone looking jagoffs. They were hassling people, some flicking cigarette butts at passer-bys or blowing vape smoke in people's faces. Anyone who fronted up soon found themselves surrounded, being pushed around. They were big guys with a hockey team kind of vibe. Bunch of goons.It was when they were pushing around some little Asian lady I dropped in."Yo," I said, "Problem?"They looked up, a herd of morons, the little old Asian lady grabbing her bags and trying to wedge her way through them."Aw shit," was about all the time one of them had to pull out before I dived in on them.It was no trouble. Most ran. The ones who didn't crawled away.A good piece of work on a cold evening.That done I bounced up north, past the Field Museum.It was late so it was all locked up, the large building dead as a mausoleum. The big roman style pillars out the front stood imposing in the dark, the side doors flanked by tall statues of ancient gods. It was the kind of building Chicago was famous for, right?Nothing going on over there.But I stopped. Something moved on the roof. Something low. A dark shape.Maybe nothing. Maybe something.Then the soft, barely heard sound of beaking glass.Definitely something.I vaulted up to land on the roof. Part of a panel was missing from the glass roof.Looking down into the dark, there was the shape a giant whale hung from the ceiling. Something crawled down its hump.A burglar?>shout a warning>dive down and bust them up>be sneaky, follow them
>>4883751>be sneaky, follow them
not!Catwoman or we riot
>Ivy ships Eric and Ayeshathe romance in this quest is maddening lmao
>>4883828Ivybros... it's over... the nice guy beats the Chad once again. I've lost faith. Eric's path is a lonely one.
>>4883751>be sneaky, follow them>>4883794Would be kinda Cool ngl
>>4883849Eric is too much of a Chad to cuck Dane, truly a God amongst menI would personally vote for Eric to confess to Ivy just to get it out of the way and move on past her
>>4883849>>4883852>>4883858Drain thee of woes, your waifu has turned her back on you. Choose Misfit and forsake all others
Taking a grip on the hole cut into the window, I lowered myself through making every effort to be as quiet as possible.The figure leapt down from the back of the whale, landing on the ground with a solid thump.Me, I landed the hump of the whale hanging high above the floor of the museum. It wobbled, the surface slippery. It was a balloon but it took my weight and I grabbed one of the cables it was hanged from to keep my balance.Spying after the figure, I sharpened my eyes as I watched them stride with surprising confidence across the museum floor. They knew where they were going, crossing under the long bone neck of a dinosaur's skeleton, the long extinct titanosaur taking up a lonely vigil in the dead silence of the after-hours museum.They were also a 'she'. Even in the dark the shape of her was obvious, helped by the tight dark body suit she wore.I leapt down to an overlooking balcony, prowling after the woman as she crossed to a closed door. Messing with the handle, the door popped open with a click.After she went in I swung down from the balcony, ghosting after her down a corridor.We passed the main exhibits, then took a turn down a side door, a small stairwell leading down underground.Down I went not too far behind, keeping light on my feet.Into a library. Old books organized by collection sat on shelves, row after row of them, with tables for reading. She went back deeper with a cocky stride.I had to admit for someone to follow, I could have done a lot worse than whoever she was. Her stride was bouncy and her costume tight. I shook the thoughts away. This was a crime scene, she was a criminal, and I was still horny.If she knew I was there she gave no sign. I heard the click of a latch, a cabinet draw open. A slight humming as I turned the corner to find her crouched in front of a bottom drawer, flicking through folders with a small flashlight clamped in her teeth.A muffled satisfied noise, she pulled out a slip of paper, squinted as she scanned it over. Then folded it neatly, zipped down the front of her suit and slipped it inside."Are you going to watch, or say 'ello?" she said.A French accent. Or French-Canadian maybe.She looked up with a grin."I know you 'ave been following me.""Can you see in the dark?" she asked, bringing the light over me.I flinched back."Ah! The famous 'otspur!" the delight in her voice was music. She was pretty beyond a doubt, with wavy brunette locks cut short. Her body was tight, athletic. She kept the flashlight by her hip. "Do you plan to catch me, put me in 'andcuffs?""Uh," I said."They call me Foxtrot," she said, "And if catch me, I may teach you 'ow."She flashed a wink, then swept the light into my eyes."Shit," I hissed, pain slashing through me.I got a sense of her ducking around me, her laughter light and playful as she raced away.>roll 3 x 1d100 dc 80
>>4883858I would too, but it's impossible when every scene with Ivy fast forwards to another scene without Ivy before we ever get the chance>>4883874Misfitanon, learn from my folly before you find the same fate that I have. As Godo said to Guts, if you desire one thing for so long, it's a given that you'll miss other things along the way. https://youtu.be/f26KyGr6y8w
Rolled 22 (1d100)>>4883881
Rolled 17 (1d100)>>4883881Oh a fucking Canadian frog>>4883882I've been after her since the highway. I don't think I know how to stop
Rolled 74 (1d100)>>4883881come on dice gods
>>4883881>This was a crime scene, she was a criminal, and I was still horny.The pain of being a single teenager super hero
The light in my eyes was time enough to give her a head start.I spun after her, burning fire. I had to be faster, but Foxtrot knew how to move. She slid across a reading desk, rolled around the corner and took the flight of steps three at a time. I leapt up after her, crashing through the door she swung in my face.Swiping out I caught a fold of leather under my fingers but she slid out from my grip, spinning back to give me a teasing smile.We crossed into the main entrance, feet ringing loud under her laughter.She slid under the legs of a pair of elephant statues, sprung up over the tail of a t-rex, heading one way than another. She seemed to be making no effort to escape, only to stay out of my reach, her laughter mocking.I was faster, but she was somewhere between a gymnast and a traceur, it gave her an edge swinging under and over displays."You are quick 'otspur!" she said."Only when I want to be," I said.I lunged for her, trying to tackle her to the ground. She ducked under, smiling up as I sailed over."Zat would 'ave taken me down," she said."The night's still young," I said."Mmm, you think I will go down on ze first night? Tres confident. I like that."She ran for the tall windows. She was running out of space to move, and decided to make her exit."En tout cas," she said, leaping for the window.Glass shattered around her as she leapt through the window head first, heedless to the danger. I leapt after her, razor shards cutting into my costume.I guess with me on her ass stealth had to take a backseat.But the chase didn't end just because we had left the museum.I landed behind her on the cold stone steps, glass raining down around us, scattered bright across the ground.Her leather suit was cut across the thighs and belly, a gash in her sleeve. But she didn't bleed. When she rose up to run it was with a soft grinding sound. Her skin had gone from a soft shade of cream to a stark white stone. She looked back to me with an alabaster face, her wavy coils made of carved stone."You've kept up so far," she said, "Care to follow more?"The stone swept back to normal flesh, she flicked the splinters of glass from her hair and she set off with me right behind her.In the dark she bobbed and weaved, smashing through bushes in her stone form to spring out as flesh and blood. I chased the fox through the broken foliage, chasing her toward the bright city lights. Always just ahead but the gap was narrowing.She dived across the street, slipping over the roof of a car. She came to a chain link fence, and beneath it train tracks. I reached to grab her shoulder, but she was up and over, then down, down onto empty train tracks. A train horn screamed, the great chugging engine a missile of steel barreling toward her. She sprung forward, the train hissing past. I took a step back, then leapt over the speeding train, landing on an empty track.
Across the other side she scaled a wall, digging stone fingers into the surface, dragging herself up quick as a spider. I took a short run, then jumped, beating her to the top.I took a seat, looked down as she climbed up. She looked up."Got you," I said, more than a little satisfied."You are tenacious, 'otspur!" she said, "Another night I might enjoy being caught, but this night I have a rendezvous." Her voice was different from the stone face, it had an echo to it."Give it up Foxtrot, I've got you boxed in," I said, "I'm more than happy to put you in handcuffs.""Oof, you promise?" she said."If you teach me how to foxtrot," I said through the hard beat in my chest.She smiled. "You don't already know 'ow?" she said, pressing herself against the wall, biting the bottom of her stone lip. "I'm a fast learner," I was glad for the mask, she didn't see me blush."But I am not a quick study," she said, "Though fun to learn."What the fuck was I doing? She's a crook. Robbed a goddamn museum. But the suit was tight and the body underneath, the stone just added to the sculpted curves.Goddamn it.The sound of another train came roaring down the tracks, its headlight washing her with light. She laughed. "Another night, perhaps?"She leapt back from the wall, hit the speeding train with a hard thunk, sinking her fingers into the steel carriage. She was swept away down the tracks, her grin disappearing, waving me a jaunty salute."Think of me tonight, 'otspur, when you cannot sleep!"Goddamn it!>keep up the chase, she wasn't getting away!>let her go, there'd be another chance.
>>4883975>let her go, there'd be another chance.let's not be too desperate here
>>4883975>let her go, there'd be another chance.
Foxtrot was originally going to be called Stone Fox until I realized it was another 's' name. Hence the Colossus powers but with stone skin instead of steel.
>>4883990Ah yes, yet another source of frustration for eric Stone (cold) Fox would have been a bit too on point
>>4883975>let her go, there'd be another chance.Could always call her rock fox
>>4883975>let her go, there'd be another chance.>>4883990Stone Fox is better...
>>4884051>>4884035>>4883985>>4883979lock that in
"Goddamn it," I spat into the wind, still feeling a hot throb under the collar.Foxtrot huh. I'd be sure not to forget. Not that it would be easy to, after all that weird flirting.I must be some kind of stupid, flirting with a criminal. Or some kind of horby. Probably both.And if I had to guess her age she had to be twenty something.I wonder how she'd react knowing I wasn't even sixteen yet.But I kept those thoughts stowed for later. The night was early, or at least not yet midnight, and the cops had turned up at the museum, a couple of patrol cars parked out the front. The cops were chatting with someone, an employee of the museum, in front of the shattered glass Foxtrot had burst through with me on her ass.An unmarked car pulled up. Out of it swung Detective Bohauer of the DPA.She had a flinty look for the surroundings, the waters of Lake Michigan behind her bright with boat lights. She went up the steps to join in on the chat, drawing out a notebook. Started scribbling stuff down.With Chicago's finest on the case, there as no doubt in my mind Foxtrot was going to dance her way to freedom.I had no idea what she'd taken or why. A piece of paper was a strange thing to steal from a museum. All those artifacts and junk. There had to be something more important in there.Knowledge could be worth a lot of money though.I tried to think back to where we'd gone, where I'd followed the fox through the dark museum. My attention had been so fixed on...other things, things that came springing to mind.I closed my eyes, tried to remember without getting caught up on other thoughts.The library, something in an archive.Shit. Too distracted. My thoughts kept circling back to Foxtrot and the grip on her suit.I shook out my head.>it might be a good idea to tip off Detective Bohauer>better idea, keep the DPA out of it
>>4884103>better idea, keep the DPA out of itNo telling what happens at the new blacksite.
>>4884103>better idea, keep the DPA out of itdo we really give a shit about think type of crime?
>>4884103Bohauer got here pretty quick, so either the DPA has the museum under surveillance, or they were already on their way hereSomething fishy is going on>it might be a good idea to tip off Detective Bohauer
>>4884103>better idea, keep the DPA out of it
You know what, screw the DPA. Whatever Foxtrot had stolen wasn't worth getting locked up in some off-books blacksite. Maybe nothing was. The less they were involved and the more they were in the dark the better.Heading back into the city, looking for some crime to stop, I still couldn't get my head clear of Foxtrot.'Think of me tonight, 'otspur,' she teased in her cut up cat suit, sitting on the roof of the train.'If you catch me, I may teach you 'ow.'I shut my eyes.Whatever she'd stolen, next time we met I would catch her and I'd see her in cuffs.But in the mean time I went home. Tonight was a bust.When I crawled into bed I couldn't sleep. Not until I thought of her. Though of her perfect stone figure, a living sculpture. Thought of her in her shredded cat suit, in cuffs, with a hot teasing smile.Goddamn. I thought of her until I got her out of my system.Then I rolled over, and finally got some sleep.I'll be back next week
>>4884190Thanks for running
>>4883990I knew it would happen, hahahahah(Please name the final bbg starting with S)
Lately the DC for fighting being kinda high? Better choose some training next time (not complaining about it QM, just thinking we've been slacking)
>>4884553I'm not really sure how the system works, maybe we only get positive modifiers if we train at some point in the week?
Eric needs a solid mentor or something. Dad's okay but he's kind of soft and focused on getting his own shit together and plowing his hot Latina gf.
>>4884553part of it depends on the type of challenge, others the specific opponent. Eric has a decent bonus to combat DCs and blows through scrubs, but there are other kinds of challenges.
>>4884190Thanks for running!>>4884553Not for the football team lmaoPlus this was more a chase than a fight, and I got the impression that fox excels at escapes.
>>4884553We don't really fight many besides common thugs, and boxing is basic enough in use that it works perfectly well, plus our powers make it even easier. But its really not useful on the upper end of people that can fight us, Karate Ki bullshit training ought to help, if we can learn Karate fast enough, considering our hobby of crime fighting, we can combine studying and training with our crime fighting nights. Most of the time it will be basic fodder types, perfect for punching bags.
>>4884979What are the chances the Yellow Mage is a Martial Arts teacher, or maybe the Green Wizard. Mr. Green did say he was still around after all. And the Red Magic we have seen so far seems more summoning based, so maybe Green is more direct combat orientated?
I should be back tomorrow, but I'll let you guys know on the day
>>4893767We're here waiting.
okay something came up and it'll have to be tomorrow
>>4895397Damn, good night.
getting startedhow are you guys? sorry for the delays
>>4896745Doin good amigo, hyped for the session!
>>4896745Working, will play regardless. Here's hoping I don't get ip banned
Friday night, 2 AM.Or should it be Saturday morning?I don't know but I was freezing waiting for Jimmy outside his school, so cold my balls had pretty much retracted and you could start calling me 'Erica'. I was hesitant to use my powers to fight the cold. Jimmy had said something weird was going on at his school, something magic related. Better not do something which could stir up the insanity.He chugged up in his beat up car, exhaust popping off. Subtle arrival.The Red Wizard got out dressed for warm, blowing into the cup of his hands."Hey," he said."What's going on?" I said."Weird shit." Not exactly an illustration. He sighed when I frowned. "It's like this, ever since our little episode people have been seeing weird shit in the hallway. Nothing dangerous, I think. Shadows on the wall but no one to cast them. Reflections in the glass moving funny. And someone said they saw...faces...in the tiles."The back of my neck prickled."Funny thing is, other things have gotten weird at school," he said, "Fights breaking out for no reason. A kid got stabbed in the eye with a pencil by his best friend just yesterday. People self-harming. Guys who've never done a bad thing in their life starting to steal. More bad stuff than usual.""Maybe folks are having a bad week," I said, but didn't believe it."I want to deal with it before it becomes dangerous," he said, "If it isn't already dangerous. I want to deal with it before someone gets killed.""I've been reading Grampa's books," he said, "Magic isn't about throwing around fireballs or whatever. It's not elemental or any Avatar stuff. It's about the spirit, mine, everyone else's. The spirit of the planet itself. Spiritual, mental, I don't know how to put it exactly. It's not what I think when I think 'magic' though.""Must be why you need a boon," I said, "If you could throw a fire ball, why would you need a goon like me to cover you?"We looked to the iron bars of the school gate, wrought in gothic patterns, grotesque gargoyles leering from within the iron patterns. Like a lot of private academies his school couldn't decide if it wanted to be traditional or cutting edge, so it had split the difference between a big, medieval looking wall which kept out the t