Pepper Potts' Protective Predicament

August 17, 2014:

Late at night in Times Square, Pepper and Lucky have a brush with the supernatural.

Times Square

One of the busiest places, day or night, in the city that never sleeps.

Characters

NPCs: Soulthief

Mentions:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Fenris' hunts aren't ordinarily this focused. Tonight though, it is. There's something here that can pass for human very, very well. He knows it hasn't left times square. It's… probably hunting on it's own and too focused to realize he's here. Hmmmmm… Come out, come out wherever you are.

Currently the predatory man is stalking up one side of the square, letting people flow around him as he focuses on the sensation of magic somewhere nearby.

*

For a Saturday night it sure doesn't feel like much of a weekend. Jason had been woken up extra early in the morning to work security for some sort of meeting that had been planned months in advance, and from there the day just got more interesting. Meeting after meeting, event after event, it was little wonder that he felt somewhat run down.

He couldn't even start to think about how it must have felt for Pepper, all he needed to do was stand and look tough, which admittedly he was very good at, judging by the sheer lack of any real need for him to step in. Yet despite feeling more than a bit sleepy himself he knew he had to keep on his toes as they made way through Times Square on the way to yet another meeting. They had plenty of time to get there, yet Jason still wanted them to get there just a bit early so he could scope the place out, make sure it was safe for Pepper. He wouldn't be much of a bodyguard if he wasn't at least a little cautious.

*

Pepper Potts doesn't feel the long hours nearly as badly as Jason does, but only because she's very much used to this kind of work day. After all, they're frequently worse. She walks alongside Jason through Times Square, which, if Tony knew about, he'd complain bitterly. But really, when the distance from one meeting to the next is only a few blocks it would actually take longer to wait for the car, drive, and then get out again. "Looking like it's going to be a late dinner. Is there anything in particular you'd like?"

*

Unseen to most, but perhaps felt, a tall specter walks behind Pepper and Jason. To almost everyone it looks simply like one of the many tourists that frequent the area. Not to Fenris. He's just seen the thing and adjusts his course to match. He just need a minute or two to make his approach. If he breaks into a run now the damn thing will get away.

*

Jason takes a quick look over his shoulder feeling something familiar from behind, but still not quite able to place it. "How about Soul food?" He asks rather calmly, while trying not to make it too obvious that he's looking around. It's odd how much he's really started to cling to that black suit of his with the little secret service style earpiece, in many ways a safety blanket for him. When he's got the suit on he can focus on a task, a goal, something concrete something that he can get involved in while distancing himself from it all at the same time.

*

Pepper Potts gets that sensation people tend to call 'someone walking over your grave', somewhat akin to how it feels when Fenris is in the same room. And, for all she knows, Fenris is somewhere nearby running an errand or some such. So, she mentally dismisses the sensation and focuses on what Jason just said.

"Soul food? That actually sounds amazing. I know the perfect place, and it's on the way back to the Tower from here." And, she knows that Tony loves the food at this place she's thinking of, so she can get him some dinner from there as well.

*

Fenris is, indeed, rapidly closing on Pepper's location. Though primarily that is because the 'tourist' behind Lucky and Pepper has sped up his walk, aiming right for the pair. Well, specifically right for Pepper. If either of them look back, the eyes momentarily go black as midnight as he reaches out to put a hand on the businesswoman's shoulder.

*

Reacting from force of habit the moment he feels someone reaching out, Jason grabs hold of the arm, flipping the main up high and slamming him back down onto the ground. It's nothing like what he was expecting in the slightest, it's more as if something wired into his brain had kicked off full force with his 'orders' to protect Pepper. What he doesn't expect even more is for the man he had just flipped to suddenly start to glow pitch black, and start screaming in pain, he'd let the man down soft enough not to break a thing yet here this man is screaming like he'd just broke all the bones in his body. This man starts to glow brighter, and brighter magical energy visibly bursting out from him. Before anyone can really react the man explodes into a shock wave of energy, slamming people and cars off flying out of the way. Glass shatters, in the windows of cars and buildings Jason already in a prime spot to shield pepper from the blast.

*

Pepper Potts startles when Jason abruptly moves, turning and stepping clear quickly out of habit, then gasping in surprise and more than a little bit of "what the…?" at the thing Jason just threw to the sidewalk. Which means that she is in no way prepared for it to abruptly explode. But, that IS why Jason is here, right? He just did his job.

*

The blast wave knocks down people, breaks windows, rolls cars. It doesn't phase the Old Wolf, though, who now has to adapt very quickly. Leaning over he hauls Lucky to his feet and opens a portal. "In," He says quietly and urgently to Pepper. "Quickly." The last thing any of them need is to be around when the police show up, which they inevitably will. Why yes officer, that man just killed a Soultheif. He should be applauded. Never mind the property damage.

No, that won't go over well.

*

Something seems completely different as Jason moves, quickly escorting the target through the portal. He wants to check on the man to see what had caused the explosion or even if anything is left of him, but he can't. Something is forcing him to act, with tactical precision, the sort of look on his face that says he's acting out orders on instinct with no real regard for himself. His only goal in life is to get Pepper to safety, and it's rather interesting how he manages it, unable to say a thing he just hauls her up onto his shoulder in a fireman's carry, and runs at top speed for a man in his shape right through the portal running back through glass, and hopping over a car that's managed to get knocked into the way just to get there.

*

Pepper Potts looks up at Fenris in surprise, but before she can move to escape through the portal as bid by the supernatural being, Lucky scoops her up and hauls her through the portal in what could possibly be the most Undignified manner ever. Oh, and her shoulder bag is sitting there on the sidewalk. There are items in there that she considers irreplaceable. "Wha…" She's unable to really protest much more as the way her bodyguard is carrying her knocks the air from her lungs.

*

Fenris is, fortunately, acquainted with the detritus of Pepper's life. So when he comes through the portal himself - which emerges in an empty alleyway four blocks up - he has her things. The violation of space and time closes behind them with an almost audible snap.

"She's safe, Lucky, you can put her down now." The rumble in his voice might signify his mild amusement at Pepper Pott's Protective Predicament.

*

Wordlessly the overzealous bodyguard takes a quick look around his surroundings making sure that the landing zone is secure. "S-sorry Pepper" Lucky finally manages to say after setting the woman back down, sounding rather ashamed of his own actions. He rubs his head with his index finger, looking like he's got quite the headache. "Not sure what just" He trails off looking back towards Fenris as if trying to wordlessly ask him something that doesn't quite get across well.

*

It takes Pepper a few moments to get her bearings again after Lucky puts her down, and that's just enough time for Fenris to look amused, for Jason to apologize, and for Pepper's temper to flare. "WHAT was that? Why on earth did you think hauling me away from the like a sack of potatoes was a good idea?" It's not that she's actually angry with Jason, it's that she's just now starting to react to what happened, and lashing out is the only way she currently has to deal with it. Well, lash out Lucky or sit on the filthy alleyway floor and start crying.

Either way, Pepper is shaking as if someone just doused her in ice-cold water.

*

"You should not be sorry," Fenris says to Lucky as he moves around him toward Pepper. "Few can say they have met a Soultheif and lived. That was very brave." He pauses. "Foolish, but brave. I am glad to see you came out alright." The hauling away part… that was just funny. A touch unnecessary, perhaps, but amusing as hell.

Reaching Pepper Fenris puts an comforting arm around her, partly to prevent her from breaking down or bolting. "It was a Soultheif, Miss Potts. A creature summoned from beyond. It got away from an amateur tonight and came here to feed. But the danger is passed. In trying to sup on Lucky, it destroyed itself."

*

Jason allows Pepper to berate him without a word of interruption, even going so far as to let Fenris put that hand on the woman he's been ordered to protect. Completely unsure of just what previous events had transpired, he can only let his mind wander as talk of soul thieves, and amateurs comes into the fold of the conversation. He tries to remember what his CO had told him, and in doing so his mind wanders back to dark places, the strongman quietly holding his hands clasped one in the other.

*

Pepper Potts blinks rapidly several times, Fenris' reassuring words warring with the usual fight or flight response his presence tends to evoke. But as she starts to calm, she notices Lucky's rather odd reaction to her having yelled at him. "Jason? I'm," she takes a breath. "I'm sorry I yelled at you. Are you all right?"

*

Fenris eyes flick up to Lucky, noting the man's… preoccupation. "Lucky?" He cants his head slighly in curiosity.

"Jason Lucky." He says more firmly, this time his voice reverberating about the alley with arcane power. Let's see if that gets his attention.

*

It takes him a few moments to respond, snapped out suddenly from that particular train of thought just yanked right back to reality. "Yes, s-" he starts trying to get his surroundings clear once again. He only just manages to stop himself from calling out at the top of his voice a response to the man who he thought was talking to him, his old commanding officer, Slade Wilson. Instead he just looks back up towards Pepper offering a rather quiet "I'm fine," his voice kept somewhat monotone gravel just for virtue of keeping himself calm and back grounded while he can, "Don't know what happened"

*

Pepper Potts studies Lucky for a long moment before declaring, "Okay, that meeting is officially a wash. We should get dinner and head back. It's been a long day." It was a long day BEFORE that souleater thing EXPLODED all over Times Square. And Jason's odd behavior is concerning.

Fenris looks about for a moment and nods, stepping away from Pepper. "Shall I send you somewhere. I doubt there are more soultheives about but I think I'd feel better knowing that you're safely wherever it is you are going."

Dropping his voice to a murmur he looks at Pepper meaningfully. "Keep an eye on him and contact me if you grow concerned."

*

"I could use a nap" Jason says rubbing the side of his head, taking another quick check of his surroundings the flash of red and blue lights zooming past the entrance of the alleyway at a fairly good clip, whirring away with blazing sirens into the distance. "After a bite to eat" He adds, trying to offer a bit of a smile, which really just plain doesn't suit his face.

*

Pepper Potts nods readily enough. She can tell the man is honestly trying, and, to be completely fair, today was one of the more grueling days she's had in a while. So, turning to look at Fenris she offers a small but apologetic smile. "Would you be willing to help us back to Stark Tower? I'll have JARVIS order dinner for all three of us if you want."

*

"No trouble at all…" The god-wolf raises his arm again and tears open a portal that leads right to Pepper's office. Once the other two are inside, he goes in after them, and shuts it, leaving the alley as if they'd never been there.

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