The Last Days of Wonder -- Gotham City

January 11, 2015:

The Robert H. Kane bridge is the site of an attack on Gotham City

Gotham City

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Characters

NPCs: Nick Fury, Ulysses Hayes, President Pershing

Mentions:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

THE LAST DAYS OF WONDER

The day the power of love overrules the love of power, there will be peace. — Gandhi.

2013

The black SUV motors along a lonely desert highway in New Mexico, careening toward a pillar of black smoke rising into the orange hued sky. By the time the truck enters the gravel driveway we can tell that it is, in fact, a small clinic of some sort that is ablaze.

Smoking a cigarette, a man seated in a wheelchair rolls out towards the vehicle. He looks to be in his early 40s, with fading almond colored hair and a few days of stubble upon his face.

As the door closes on the trunk — the driver has put the wheelchair in the back of the SUV—he looks to the man sitting in the passenger seat; the latter looks worried and perhaps a little concerned for anyone still in that building.

"Harkins? Did I ever tell you my story about the chickadee?"

"No boss," Harkins shakes his head, unable to take his eyes from the burning building, even as the driver returns and the SUV begins to make its way back to the highway.

"I was a boy at the time. Maybe 10." The man in the back seat lowers the window and lights another of his cigarettes. He exhales and his eyes trail out towards the rocks and sand in the foreground and the mountains in the background. "My uncle had some land and decided to bring me out to learn how to shoot a bb gun. "Don't shoot anything but crows," he said, reasoning that crows were scavengers and lower on the totem pole than other birds like robins or sparrows. There was a hierarchy of what we could kill and what we couldn't and that hierarchy was based on the most recent repast."

He takes a deep inhale of his cigarette and holds the smoke deep in his lungs, only letting it slip out as he continues to speak.

"I didn't see shit for crows, to be honest. I didn't see shit for anything except for a cute little chickadee. Black and white head, looked almost fluffy. Damn gorgeous tiny thing." He spits out the final word as the rest of the smoke billows out and he can't help but chuckle. "So I went down to one knee, got the bird in my sight. I exhaled, squeezed the trigger slow, just like my uncle taught me. And when the first bb hit, you should have seen the look on my uncle. Incredulity is the only way to describe it. He didn't even know what to say at first as the bird sat there, squirming, grasping to what little life it had left in it."

"Finish it, he said."

"And I did. And when I pulled the trigger," he takes another deep drag from the cigarette before flicking it out the window. "That was the last time I felt remorse."

*

NEW YORK CITY

A family smiles and poses for a picture in Central Park, but after they're finished, the mother and two children go to get the cellphone from the stranger, while the father empties out a bag of something onto the grass near the tree.

A few hundred feet away, a pair of kissy-facers are busy being romantic, but after a timely kiss, the woman leans over behind the park bench they sit upon and empties something into the grass behind them.

METROPOLIS

A pair of men wearing large backpacks tread the trail towards the Metropolis Power Company, the leading power plant in clean energy in the world. One of them produces a tin-schnipps from his pocket and begins to cut a hole into the side of the fence.

GOTHAM CITY

A half dozen boats head towards the Robert H. Kane Memorial bridge. Conspicuous because their lights are off, they remain unseen as they pull closer toward the rocky embankments that hold the braces of the giant bridge above as the traffic jam lies above

*

TONIGHT
SHIELD, the Federal Government, the NSA, CIA, and Homeland Security all begin to investigate a strange viral video on youtube where a man with thinning hair is speaking bizarrely into the camera. G-men hackers begin working feverishly to trace the post.

NEW YORK

Almost before anyone can bat an eye, nearly all of Central Park is in flames. Thousands of people are inside, stranded, as the historic civic space is blazing. Those that are close enough run to the exits and out on the streets, several of the victims on fire themselves, as the emergency vehicles can already be heard in the distance.

GOTHAM CITY

Four loud explosions happen simultaneously on the busiest bridge at the busiest time of day. The blasts look like blinding white fireworks, just before quadruple fireballs take the bridge. Within a few seconds, the first part of the bridge gives way, spilling a plethora of cars down into the river. The angry sound of breaking metal ripping away from itself becomes a cacophony and this is about to get really, really bad.

Bobbi Morse, aka Mockingbird, has been busy packing for a SHIELD mission on Maui and trying to corner #1 (ex-husband number one that is) for the last day. She actually welcomes the break in the constant stalking and decision making when the call comes in that there is an incident in that armpit of New Jersey known as Gotham. Besides, there is almost no chance that #2 would respond to the call. He hates Jersey, right? Oh dear.

Mockingbird is in her signature outfit, with a pair of night vision glasses on her face. Her long blonde hair whips in the night wind but the outfit cuts the cold considerably for the SHIELD agent. Her face goes grim when she arrives on the scene in a flying car, landing outside one of the ends of the bridge. She leaps out and begins running out onto the crumbling expanse to try and help pull up anyone clinging to the edges. She grabs for one of the snapped suspension cables to use it as a rope.

The moment the video caught the attention of SHIELD, there was no hope that Field Agent Barton wouldn't be called in. When the bridge blows in Gotham, he's sent there rather than to the conflagration in the Park. This, at least to a dispatcher, is a priority.

Grabbing bow and arrows before jogging to the flight deck, Clint has to run through, 'Guess paradise is gonna have to wait!' and the like. No matter! Climbing into a Quin, he straps himself in the pilot's seat at about the same time he's flicking the engines to 'on' to warm up on a cold night, waiting for Kate.

"Hate Jersey, hate Jersey, hate Jersey." A mantra! "Even more now that it's keeping me from—" The whine of the engines hide whatever else he's about to say as he gets the clearance to take off from ATC.

Kate Bishop moonlights in Gotham. It used to be for the chance to run into Damian or Vorpal. These days, it's as much stubborn refusal to admit that some things are over as anything else. Now? Now it might be a slight lack of trust in the locals to keep the entire city from burning down. She does still have a few friends left there, after all.

So as soon as Clint is buckling himself in, Kate's right behind him. "Apparently not as much as someone else does," she quips to the other archer, getting herself strapped securely. "Let's go be heroes."

In the Clocktower, the explosions register on Oracles screens pulling her attention from the otherwise petty crime she's been monitoring for the team. All Bat resources otherwise engaged, the red head scans her comms channels to see who else is the area. A certain young archers phone registers as heading in the Gotham direction, and she nods grimly as she calls the phone. "I really need to get that young a comms unit." she mutters as she waits for the call to be answered.

The streets of Gotham don't pose the same opportunities for theft as Midtown Manhattan, but that's not the only reason that Quicksilver gets around. The more he moves throughout the cities of the Eastern Seaboard, the more chances he has of randomly running across the path of his missing sister. She's good with chance like that.
It's only his incredible speed that saves his life. He's about halfway across the bridge first series of explosions rocket it. As fast as he is, he wasn't expecting that. Even at his speeds, he can mis-step. He loses his balance and slips off a guard rail. From there, it's a series of video game-like movements as he scrambles to keep out of the water and out of the path of expanding fireballs. He manages to make it to the Gotham side of the bridge by some great miracle of speed and luck. He's not totally unharmed, though. His white fluffy jacket shows signs of singing and his arm has been sliced into by a piece of flying debris. He's face-down feet from a flaming car and groaning. Still, he got off a lot easier than those poor souls whose vehicles plunged into the water, consumed by flame or buried in debris.

THIS MORNING

The youtube video is everywhere. It depicts a man seated, looking deep into the camera with the haze of cigarette smoke all around him. He seems calm, even if his words are crazed.

"Hello," he says cheerfully. "By the time you watch this you may or may not have witnessed the news of the day. I take credit, or blame, whichever term you prefer to use. In any event, this is not a warning. This is not a bargaining chip. What I do today is simply a throwing down of the gauntlet, it is for me to show you your place in society and my place in society. This is just the beginning. This is just the start. You'll feel comfortable again, maybe after tonight. Maybe next week, or maybe next year. It's unavoidable. Your nature is for sloth, which is why you are fit to be ruled. You'll never see it coming."

*

"I think I got it," some no-name SHIELD computer technician says. "Georgetown, Maryland It's a small building—Borne Chemical Plant. It hasn't been in operation in 30 years."

Nick Fury leans over the shoulder of the young man; his one visible eyeball looks like it's about to explode.

"Get everyone out there. Justice League, SHIELD, SRD… Everyone! Now, goddam it!"

"Many of our operatives are in Gotham, sir!"

"Dammit, get anyone you can and get them there now!"

"I recommend air dropping a solution on New York to put out the fire, General," Reed Richards stands, having ironically been at the Triskelion to provide his assistance as an advisor. "I've also got a man in Metropolis, I can discuss the power outage with."

*

NOW

GOTHAM

By the time that Bobbi gets there, it's damn near pandamonium. There's blood everywhere, and body parts everywhere as well. From her vantage point she can see people down in the water who fell, struggling to get out of their cars. In front of her there's a child holding onto one of the bent girders, whom she rescues with some quick thinking and a suspension rope.

As Clint approaches, he can see tons of bodies in the water, some dead but many alive as the drop was not that terribly far. On the bridge it's just crazy, people clawing at each other trying to get off and save themselves, the human nature really beginning to show.

Oracle sees a crap ton of commotion by personnel services, naturally. Her hacks into the government sources show almost all government agencies are active; going nuts really. She is one of the few who are also able to see that there are three simultaneous attacks going on at the same time; likely not a coincidence.

Despite getting across the bridge with no wear and tear, Quicksilver's use of powers show him to be a heroic threat. So, as with the others, people begin firing at him from the sides of the river.

NEW YORK

Ronnie and Kim can see the flames growing higher and higher like the scary part of a U2 song. Luckily, there's a good alleyway nearby for changing.
Likewise, the coffee shop that Vorpal enters happens to have a very frightened person who was on the pot, but they seem to run away quickly, giving the young magic-man some privacy to do his changing. Gar, meanwhile, is able to get up into the air without too much difficulty. Certainly the burns are hurtful, but he's alive. However, after he gets up and out of the flames, he begins to take fire from snipers located in assorted high rises on either side of the park.

As Kim and Tider make their way in, suddenly they begin taking fire. It's not clear where the shots are coming from. There are some coming from high above, likely from snipers in the windows. Others are coming from the ground level as if they thought heroes would be rushing to the scene.

When this is all over, there will be a handful of people who tell their grandkids that they were saved by Iron Fist, whose heroics led them out of the burning hell of Central Park. But we're a long way from that because he begins taking sniper shots from above.

METROPOLIS

Shayera sees the ghostly images of the hospital. There are lights, certainly, but not enough to keep things going. And, no doubt, plenty of doctors were performing surgery during the attack. Inside, people rush around frantically, trying to get everything together.

Meanwhile, as Overgirl flies over the power plant, she suddenly becomes the object of machine gun fire. After a few moments, there's even a surface to air missile that comes her way!!!

Depending on where John ends up, he will see different things. We'll have to keep an eye on him.

"Ben, it's Reed," says Richards as he intercepts Grimm's call. "You'll want to get to the power plant right away. I'm coming in the Fantasticar, but I'll be slow. There won't be any public transportationeverything in Metropolis is electric. Better take a cab" Reed stops as he hears something come across the newswire, "Ben, people are taking fire as they come close to the power plant. It's clobberin' time."

Mockingbird carries the child over to authorities and hands her over. "Agent Morse on site in Gotham, reporting in. Going to lend a hand here, sir," she barks into her comm. She begins heading back to the bridge but pulls up short in her activity and moves to the side of the injured young Maximoff. "Hey, hey there, are you all right? How many fingers am I holding up?" she asks him, crouching down and displaying a trio of digits while looking him over. If he's not too badly concussed she might be ok to move him away from the structure and past the police line where the emergency personnel have been set up. She digs into a belt pouch with her free hand and pulls out a SHIELD issue pressure bandage to slap onto his bleeding arm, peeling the thing open with her teeth as she waits for his answer.

Clint's pretty much covered under the 'JLA' and 'SHIELD' order. It just depends upon under which capacity he's operating, or rather, when the mission is completed. The quin hovers briefly, and he gestures to Kate in a 'down' as the Quin begins to land.

It's the shots fired that concerns him, however. "Hawkeyes on scene," Clint calls through the com. "Small arms fire from both sides of the bridge." Guess that answers which team they're 'representing' "Heads down. Gonna take care of that.".

So, first job is to target those shooting, and Clint flips a switch to bring up the 'small' caliber weapons to bear. Just look for the muzzle flashes and he'll provide 'cover fire' for the Emergency Response Teams.

"Hey, Oracle," Kate greets as she thumbs on her phone. "Looks like you guys are having some issues out there." She leans over to get a look at the controls on the jet, then rattles off a frequency. "If you want to tap in there, you can stay in contact with the SHIELD agents coming in." Catching sight of the chaos in the water, she grimaces. "The Titans on scene anywhere? We could use someone to raise some matter. Iceman could get us an ice bridge, Bunker could build us a ramp. Vorpal could teleport." She's already unbuckling from her seat, digging into the cargo compartment. "We need a line out there," she calls back to Clint. "We're not going to get them all one at a time, but if we can tie off a line and pull it out over the water, it'll give people something to work with!"

Oracles news feeds and, other information feeds, start filtering back the attacks in other cities. Hacking into as many Security and CCTV systems as she can across the tri cities, getting the overall picture is important. The Gotham feeds for the bridge are pulled to the fore as she watches.

As Kate rattles off the frequency, the red head taps it into to her system and activates Comms, disconnecting the phone call to Kate. "This is Oracle, I believe I'm speaking with all SHIELD agents in Gotham. Sitrep: Three separate attacks: Gotham, Metropolis, New York. They all seem to be coordinated. Hawkeye, Titans are busy in New York right now. If senior Hawkeye can relay to his sources there are three separate, coordinated attacks, things might go a little more smoothly."

Groan. Oh, what the hell? Quicksilver's ears are ringing and he's sort of…smoking and bleeding a little bit. A pat-a-pat-pat on his jacket and the fire is out. Lucky, too, considering how flammable down is. He blinks up at Bobbi and looks…well, more than a little dazed. When he speaks, he says a number in a language that's not…English, but sounds vaguely like 'three.' He's about to thank her for the bandage, but then there's a bullet whizzing by his ear. He mumbles something and gets to his feet. Really, if he was truly the self-preserving, selfish type, he'd zip the hell out of dodge and not look back. But there are people in danger, people teetering over the edges of broken bridge, people in cars about to explode. That's all a little hard to ignore.
He steels himself, pulls down his goggles, breathes out and then, ZIP. ZIP ZIP ZIP. He's off like a rocket, scooping up anyone he comes across who is injured and not pinned too deeply. Bobbi will find an increasing pile of wounded behind the police cordon and near her. The folks might end up behind the line with a little bit of whiplash and some nausea, but that's better than the alternative. He stops after a handful of people and is weaving slightly on his feet. "OK. Doing that with a mild concussion? Not so recommended." But he's preparing to do it again. His nice white jacket, in addition to being singed, is now covered in gore and soot.

METROPOLIS

"General fury, this is Mr. Fantastic," Reed says as he's flying southward as fast as possible. "I'm not sure how it happened, but the major hospital in Metropolis just had a charge sent through it. My readouts are showing it should be good for another 18 hours now. I can't even hypothesize how it happened."

"Be that as it may, Richards, I'm going to need you and anyone else that can get there down in Georgetown, Delaware right away. I'll send you the coordinates. Whoever did this, well, we think he might still be there.

Elsewhere in Metropolis, Hawkgirl will notice a 10 car pileup at an intersection not far from the hospital. There is one dead, and 6 extremely wounded and who need immediate help. Including one child.

By the time Overgirl arrives at the power plant, she can see half a dozen men milling about with assault rifles (powers rock). As of yet they are not aware of her presence. They look practiced though, as if they have done this plenty of times.

Conspicuousness was never really Ben's thing, and by the time he's paid the cabbie and gotten to the entrance, he begins taking fire. The bullets ping all over, but have little to no effect on the beefy ex-footballer. "Ben, I'm headed to Georgetown. Give me updates from the ground over there if you would," Reed says into his com as the Fantasticar soars over land now and towards the city in question.

NEW YORK

Eventide rushes into the crossfire, at home in her element of warfare. As things begin to slow down for her, she'll begin to notice them. Men strategically placed between 10 and 13 stories up on the East sides, and presumably, the West sides across the park. They look like they're trying to clip any heroes coming in. Or out.
Vorpal's efforts go a long way into dousing the flames over the park. Although the area is wide, he's able to dampen down quite a bit of it and give people trying to escape a better chance of doing so. Still, those damn snipers.

Velocity Dashes thrown newspaper stand is not in vain! Surely the sniper who was currently aiming up at Gar Logan never saw it coming, so when it smashes into him at high velocity, covering him in the news, there is certainly a pun to be made somewhere. And the whirlwind trick works quite better than the young heroine might have thought originally and with Vorpal's help, the pair start really blanketing the flames out there.

Other snipers get a handful of concern as Gar begins taking them out from the sky. Their bullets are no use! They're being ripped from windows! Their job almost done, many of them begin to run away!

Danny can see them from his stealthy spot. At least some of the remaining ones. Barely two floors up, they don't seem to see him at all. There are three and they are taking pot shots and then reloading up there.

GOTHAM

"Eight?" says a victim who is being aided by Mockingbird, not realizing that Bobbi was talking to Pietro. But before the woman can respond, the car window next to her explodes from an errant shot by a sniper from the cliffs on the south end of the bridge.

The suppressive fire of the snipers begins to lessen a bit as Hawkeye gives them a bit of their own medicine. He's not sure, but he's pretty sure he got three headshots, judging by the way their heads explode like bloodsausages.

"Roger that, Bishop," says one of the SHIELD agents. "We could probably use some of the suspension wire like Mockingbird used." BLAMBLAMBLAM All these conversations seem to end with someone getting shot at.

"Roger, Oracle," says Nick Fury into his compiece. He's heard of Oracle, but hasn't had the luxury. He doesn't have enough time for introductions, "I need you to get people to Georgetown, Delaware right away. Anyone you can funnel there—we need all the help we can get."

As Quicksilver begins tearing through the scene, onlookers will see the bridge become more and more sparsely populated. The bullets? Ha. They are pretty much slow mo to Pietro (that rhymes kinda), and the shift of the concern is for those down in the water.

Mockingbird blinks as the kid is speaking a language she doesn't recognize, and is suddenly gone. It registers that he's more than just human a second later. A bullet whizzes by her ear and she rolls aside, tumbling behind a smoking remnant of a vehicle. "Taking fire," she reports over the comm. She grabs a flare from a pouch and tosses it in the direction of the shooters, marking the spot and lighting them up for the archers and any police snipers. "Painting targets for you Hawkeye," she calls over the SHIELD channel.

Bobbi counts to five, then she gets up from behind her cover and begins moving towards the debris piles, listening for anyone in trouble. She pulls out her batons and joins them together to make her bo staff, using it to carefully lever large bits of debris aside to begin digging people out, mindful to keep something solid between her and the shooters.

"Put the cargo nets into the water with the winch," Clint calls back between squeezing off shots. "They'll be able to grab hold, but the water's really cold. It'll be now or not at all."

Keeping the quin level is easy enough, and it should act as double duty to serve as a small-arms target (and probably a larger arms target, too.). Nothing like being bait. "Roger that, Oracle," Hawkeye responds first, but when the Director comes onto the com, Clint sits up a little straighter.

"Sir, pulling the victims from the water and providing cover fire-" and there's a flare, followed by a burst from the SHIELD aircraft. "We'll be on our way the moment we rendez-vous with Mockingbird."

There's hardly a hesitation from Clint on the radio when he addresses the ex- directly. "Be ready for pick-up, Mockingbird." He doesn't know about her new 'friend'.

Kate dashes back to the cockpit with an armful of high-tension cable, slapping a hand onto the loudspeaker. "Quicksilver, this is Kate, from the park. Dropping you a line for rescues." That's all there's time for, though, with shots being fired all around. "Pop the hatch," she adds with a kiss to Clint's cheek as she grabs a quiver and snaps open her bow. "Gonna go shoot some bad guys."

As soon as the hatch opens, she's dropping the line and the nets, hoping the strange speedster caught her heads up. And as soon as it's out of her hand, she's drawing and firing, rapid-fire.

An incendiary tip into the water tower on a roof by some of the shooters - a little bit of their own medicine on a January day. Three more shafts go out in quick succession, taking out a retaining wall near another set of shooters, and two more in the direction of the men shooting at Mockingbird and at the other agent.

Fury's voice on the Comms takes Oracle by surprise momentarily "Acknowledged General Fury." she nods to herself and opens up all her comms channels. Anyone who has an Oracle Comm, or other channel to or from Oracle, will get this update. "This is Oracle. There have been co-ordinated attacks on the Tri-Cities. All available people are to head to Georgetown, Delaware. Please acknowledge receipt of this comm and your status." She'll relay the details to Fury as they come in.

Quicksilver steels himself, then is off like a shot again, doing what he can to rescue anyone he can determine is still breathing. Bullets are nudged off course one by one. Those snipers must think they've suddenly contracted Stormtrooper Syndrome, because not a damn thing is hitting where they aim. A few bullets even curve back on themselves and either hit the boat or splash into the water. Such a dramatic curve kills some of their momentum, but a slow bullet is still a bullet.
He pauses for a rare moment to assess the situation. It's then that he hears Kate's call over the loudspeaker. As soon as the line is low enough, he's zipping up it. He's visible for only a moment, then disappears in a blur of silver. When he stops again, a hail of bullets smacks, pingpingping in a near-perfect halo around them. He grins a bit wildly. "OK, Captain Pierce. Whaddya want me to do?"

METROPOLIS

Hawkgirl makes it to the hospital in record time. Had her heroics not happened earlier, they certainly would not have been able to admit any new patients, but she is greeted by a throng of Doctors who take the young child in with them. From there, it's still craziness out in the city, and with everyone focused on the power plant, there's no one to help but Hawkgirl.

Overgirl's snared villain is desperate to get away from her. Rather than tell her, he begins to run. But his feet just sort of do that cartoon thing as he's lifted up in the air. "It was Hayes. It was Ulysses Hayes! Please god don't hurt me!"

Ben does his wrecking ball routine much to the chagrin of the badguys and wipes up much of what Overgirl does not. In truth, there is but one more sniper, and dude is making a run for it. "Hayes man! Hayes! He's been planning this shit for years!" squeals the man in Thing's arms. He'd always been a fan of the Four. Not anymore.

GOTHAM

Bobbi's artwork allows many of the lower level agents to better see where the snipers are coming from. Almost immediately they begin to blast away, putting terrorists down left and right.

The remaining SHIELD agents do their best work to get some of those in the water out with the net idea that Clint has. It's do or die time. For those who leave on the quinjet to make the short trip to Delaware, they do so with the knowledge that there are those who will lose their lives for the decision they made.

A massive explosion follows Kate's expertise shot across the bridge and onto the water tower. BLAMMMMMM! They won't be able to use that drinking water for a while, but no one drinks the water in Gotham anyways.
Fury has no idea how many heroes will get the message, but he's thankful for whoever this Oracle is. "We should have backup any minute," he says, radioing to Reed. "Copy, Fury. Moving in to descent now. I think we've been beaten, here though," Richards says as he spies a certain Amazonian who seems to have beaten them to the party.

SHIELD agents joining Clint are likely to feel less guilty after Quicksilver begins shooting around doing his damage, and preventing snipers from hitting their mark. One lowly lieutenant has an idea, "Mockingbird, if you could paint more snipers, this kid here might be able to take them out."

NEW YORK

Iron Fist smashes through the walls and the sniper nearly leaps out of his clothing as his gun goes flying in the air. Whether or not he meant to, the gun is no longer in his hands and those hands rise high in the sky.

SPLAT SPLAT SPLAT

Eventide makes like Chewbacca in Return of the Jedi and uses the weaponry against the evil doers as she begins picking off snipers left and right, their brain matter exploding on walls behind them like Jackson Pollack artwork.

Velocity Dash leaves a handful of enemies in her wake as she barrels them over like the Donkey Kong video game on the original Nintendo System. One particular sniper has her in his sights, but as soon as he is about to pull the trigger, his brain explodes from a well placed shot from Eventide.

There's commotion over by Gar and Vorpal as the two lovers try and figure things out. One final sniper is looking to kill each of them too but SPLAT

Eventide again. She's like really, really good at shooting. Surely someone knows why, right? Right?

GEORGETOWN, DELAWARE

When Wonder Woman enters the old building, the entire thing is dark now that we are well past sunset. There's the creaking of the old door blowing in the wind and for a moment she must feel as though the needle in the haystack is somewhere else.

But certainly whoever this is, whoever would be so inclined to do something of this magnitude would not be so careless as to allow himself to be caught so easily. To stay here hours after making and posting the message. No, surely not if he was half the savante his followers believed him to be.

But he is here.

"Wonder Woman," says the voice as the echoes bounce side to side. The voice sounds different. Filtered. Like someone trying to copy Hayes. There are speakers throughout the building up in the corners and Richards and Fury are still too far to be of any help.

"Getting a helping hand from a super, Hawkeye," Bobbi notes over the comm. With strangers on the frequency she's careful to stick to codenames. "Might come in handy so expect another passenger if he's willing." She helps a man and his wife out from the debris and sends them towards the EMTs, before she flare paints a pile of other shooter nests.

When the quinjet nears, Mockingbird rushes forward, running up a pile of debris, heading for the gap where the bridge was blown. She plants the bo staff and uses it to pole vault skyward, flipping over to land on the SHIELD craft in a 3 point stance. "Let's do this!" she remarks as she drops into a seat.

Hawkeye is careful to push the quin forward, dancing on it's engines, making sure he can catch any who can still find the strength to take hold of the net. (It's easier than just cabling!) His expression is set to professional; he knows that there's going to be loss of life. One thing makes it bearable, however- he wasn't the one to blow the bridge. It's not on his head, though it doesn't help completely.

Off to a safe shore where the EMTs have set up, and he's calling back to Kate, now that Bobbi is safe and sound and belted in. "Okay, cast off and we're headed south!" is called out, off mic. "Rendez-vous with Director Fury in 15 minutes."

"Catch," Kate calls down to Quicksilver, tossing down her earpiece for the comms. "How do you feel about confiscating some guns?" she grins down to the speedster. "If you get bored after that, sounds like they need all comers in Georgetown, Delaware. Stick that in your ear, it'll keep you updated. Race you there!" Kate may not know the speedster well, but apparently she has an idea for how to motivate him.
She fires off another shot, taking out a sniper targeting a group of agents working on rescues and keeping the jet covered. She nods to Bobbi when the other agent lands, but she's got her eyes on the surrounding area. "Ready when you are," she calls back to Clint.

Quicksilver snags the earpiece from the air and slides it over his ear. "Cool! Testing, testing 1, 2, 3. Can all the badasses hear me?" Poor SHIELD agents. That's totally not a professional way to use the comms. He zips off with a salute for Kate. He does his best to get to anyone who is gettable, to divest them of their weapons. A few might get wedgies for good measure. The bad guys also look to be…bound and hog-tied with duct tape? He really should get a sponsorship deal from 3M. He zips back up the rope and presents Kate with a bundle of weapons. It's like a puppy playing fetch.

"You have at least three agents incoming from Gotham, General Fury, ETA 15 minutes. Other resources will arrive as they can." Oracle speaks on the SHIELD channel. "Acknowledged Vorpal. Awaiting update." Her gaze cuts to the New York feeds. With coordination inhand, the Information Goddess waits for the next update.

As the Information Goddess is waiting, she investigates the Metropolis power plant and supply. With some judicious hacking into several power company systems, the redhead manages to isolate the power plant and divert some of the country's power into Metropolis. "Lights should be going on in Metropolis" the call is sent out on her SHIELD channel.

METROPOLIS

Hawkgirl's work pushing wreckage out of the way is able to get the flow of the emergency vehicles going again. Despite never being able to know how many people she's saved through her efforts, many of the victims who saw her in flight will know how she saved them.

All around Overgirl, fire personnel begin to pour in. The fires are a worry, to be sure, with such high priced machinery around. Every bit that they save is hopefully a shorter amount of time that it'll take to get things up and running again. "Thank you, Miss," the voice of the young firefighter trails. "Uhm, what's your name?"

Ben smothers out a flame while firefighters begin on the others. Abruptly, over his shoulder the skyline of Metropolis lights back up. How, or why, considering the largest power plant in the country is in tatters, isn't immediately known.

Thank your local Oracle.

GOTHAM

The situation in Gotham is pretty calm now thanks to the help of the heroes. As Oracle looks over her work, she'll be able to breathe easier knowing that things are pretty well in order across all of those cities. With a few well placed

NEW YORK

One gawker can't help but whoop in astonishment as Eventide flips downward in an amazing feat. "Who is that?!" he exclaims at the heroine. If she wasn't known before this, New York will certainly be talking about her and her sidekick, Dash or Velocity Dash or Rainbow Dash or whatever. These things have a life off their own.

Oh, and speaking of, there's her sidekick right now. With the mask off, a gawker tries to get a phone pic, but just he does, he's elbowed in the back on accident by a EMT making his way to get one of the wounded.

"Hey! Who is that?" Some people who were cordoned off by the police are out on the streets, and see Gar fall from the sky. They come over and look at the unconscious Garfield. "Hey, is he alright?" "I think I know that dude. Isn't he in the Titans?" Then they see Vorpal, "I /know/ that guy's in the Titans!"

Danny is pretty ruthless with those kicks, but the good news is that those dudes will be apprehended soon enough. And other goons have already spilled enough beans to put two and two together. So, feel good about those kicks, if they let ya get some frustration out.

GEORGETOWN, DELAWARE

By the time Clint's Quinjet arrives outside of the old laboratories, he'll be able to see Reed's Fantasticar and Fury's Quinjet. Two figures (it's dark) make their way into the building, and it would be presumptive if the whole building erupted in fire, but for whatever reason, there is silence. Silence as they land, silence as they enter.
Quicksilver would get their first, followed by the others, but as they funnel around, they see that Reed and Fury are kind of hanging back while the Amazonian Princess, has the villain right where she wants him.

Everything is playing in her mind, Wonder Woman did not have to be there to /see/ it all. The reports were in:

Flames licked high, silhouettes dancing in them, death throes to Hades and the screams did not differentiate in tenor across this small map where chaos has ensued and it was as if she could smell the scorched earth and the unbiased blackening of Central Parkâ¦

The bridge buckled, old stonework cracking and splintering into an explosion of old architecture and stonework people believed in, in a dark city where it was hard to believe in much. And while waiting for the stoplight to the change it all fell asunderâ¦

Lights, blinding, hearts beating… People screaming and it all-

Fades.
To.
Black.

It's a mixture as Wonder Woman had flown high, there was a breach in atmosphere for only a moment as she holds her breath and feels the distant sunlight fade and then lets goâ¦

All of it is a wash in her mind, she was not there but she knows the horrors and has seen them again and again, and as she falls the speed only picks up, noir strands of hair whipping around a pale facade where oceanic eyes are sealed behind lids and a couple hundred feet above the warehouse she can pick up the sound of silence amongst the chaos in her mind, that door slamming and openingâ¦

Wonder Woman leaves a gaping wound in that building, her plummet spraying brick, mortar and that door inward to sail out and rip through several walls before it lands in the empty cement field on the other side. Booted feet make no hesitance nor silence as she moves from open space to the next, using the doorway she /made/ until she comes to the room where that man sitsâ¦

Monitors are around him, Diana stopping behind him as she powers them down, the rest of his equipment to make the videos there and poised around him, whether or not they are active Wonder Woman seeks not to care, one of the digital recorders and its stand now under the strong grip, lifting it to swingâ¦

His hands lower and capture the wheels of his chair, spinning him to face her with eyes that have likely watched his home-spun tragedies. "This is a dark time, a time where I wish I could simply clutch to my mother, remember the sound of my father…" his words give Wonder Woman pause, though her teeth flash beyond the purse of lips, even the twitch and seize of sinew as it even struggles with the desire to follow through the blow.

"All I want is that reality, that childlike glee back. Can you take me home? I want to go home…." His sobs emerged and the rest of his noise sounded like drivvel, enough so that she sought to silence him with launching that recorder into his sprawl of garage tech, her other hand gripping the golden lasso and wrapping him in it.

Loops around loops, Wonder Woman bound him to his chair and did not hesitate to make. it. snug. just before she took rapid flight upwards and then towards the cities.

"Tell me all about it during the worst roller coaster ride you will ever experience."

Hayes sort of lolls about drunkenly, as if he's heavily drugged by some sort of serum. With glassy eyes he looks to Diana and cowers. "I really just want to see my mother and father. They must really be worried about me."

"Get that idiot in the Quinjet. He gets interrogated, but not by anyone until we've had chance to process him. NOW!" screams Fury.

*

SOMEWHERE OUTSIDE OF HARRISBURG, PENNSYLVANIA

The convenience store has one of those electronic bells that ding-dongs everytime someone comes in and everytime someone comes out. The kind of bell that begins to get annoying after the first hour of work.

A brown haired young woman walks in, the thirteenth customer since opening, and Gus the attendant slides his large ass by a stand of hostess cakes and gets behind the counter.
"Just a pack of smokes," the young woman says as she takes off her sunglasses to look into her purse."You know, you shouldn't smoke." It's funny because men always seem to want to protect women. Especially the pretty ones.

"You know you should probably just f—"

"Hey, you're that actress chick, right? Delores Winters? The actress? Aren't you kidnapped or missing or something?"

Delores' angry face turns nice. "Me? No, I'm sorry, you must be mistaken. I get that all the time."

Out in the SUV now, Delores takes her normal place behind the driver and lowers the window despite the cold. The thug in the passenger seat turns back to look at Delores. "Boss, you still smoke even with the new—"

"It doesn't work like that," Delores says faintly, adjusting her stylish sunglasses. "It's still me in here, Harkins."

"And we have a lot of work to do before we sleep."

*

WHITE HOUSE
WASHINGTON DC

"My fellow Americans," says President Pershing. "Tonight our great nation was attacked through a barbaric and cowardly measure by a group of terrorists who are either dead, or have been brought to justice. The perpetrator, Ulysses Hayes, was apprehended tonight in Georgetown, Delaware. I have called on the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security to lead the investigation into this terrible event to ensure that all Americans are safe."

He sighs, briefly overcome in a moment of humanity, he falters slightly.

"Many Americans died this evening. We pray for them and their families and will not stop until each terrorist is rooted out and either killed or imprisoned. New York. Metropolis. Gotham. Three of the greatest cities the world has ever known: We are with you tonight in spirit. You are in our hearts and we will pray for your speedy recovery. Even better than before."

"May God Bless You, and May God Bless America."

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