Proving Grounds: Final

July 24, 2015:

The finale to The Proving Grounds. Will they all make it out alive and in one piece? (Emits by Deathstroke)


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

Day Five: The room with the colossus should have been safe, it was after all the home of a giant ball of broken bits and what nots. It should have been a decent resting place, a short stay to sleep. It should not be the place where broken robot toys come back to life. Self repairing, apparently, colossusi are just not fair. Frankly, none of this is fair. But then that's sort of the point now isn't it? Fleeing the room with barely an hours rest, hands shaking from lack of calories, heads pounding from caffine withdrawl and dehydration, those stupid little sticks in their pockets seem to weigh figurative tons.

In combat conditions the normally outgoing Alexander is somewhat terse. The aura of courage that had been given as some measure of support had dwindled a day ago, grew smaller around him until today it didn't exist. The travellers were left to their own devices, perhaps more like a group moving in the same direction as opposed to any sort of team.

Terseness became silence, and eventually Bieber just fell into step. He moved along, position in the marching order changing now and again in case someone faltered. When someone fell back he'd move to cover, perhaps offering at times an arm up. But other than that, the time passed, Slowly, but it passed.

Melody had an idea. But she lost it. But then she had it again, but then she truly lost it. And losing it was something that Melody was good at. Getting it again? Possibly upon the same level but it wasn't looking as such at the moment. Cause there were tears. Or supposed to be tears. Little whimpers once the hunger pangs hit, her hands occasionally touching the walls as they move along, feeling the humtrum buzz and wondering.. just wondering..

What the hell was that idea?

At this time though? There were phantoms. The little devils that hang within the corner of your eye and when you look? Gone. It was getting hard to breath. Trying to enforce the nanites to react on such a low 'battery' caused her fingers to glow dully. Maybe it needed the fuel of food and water. Or maybe it was sheer will all along.

There was that humming.. in that next room. Humming.. what was that idea again.. wait.. there it is! She knows now!


"Did you know if you shave a zebra it'll become completely black?"

A-yep. She lost it again.

The Asegai spear has become a walking stick. A top knotted ponytail of honey blonde has fallen around to the nape of her neck, parts ripped out of the band and a puff of it amasses around the left side where it has covered since her arrival with this group, but becoming more haphazard as honey gold melts to white and dirty blonde, because… it's fucking dirty.

Only at moments on her own did she stop to sit, shaken hands smearing over the lower part of her face, and in a crouch she lifts part of the mask to do the same beneath but reveal nothing to the rest of them. The red form fitting attire lined in gold and reinforce beneath as well as along the sides of her top is torn and tattered in areas, dried blood beneath almost melding the open wound upon thigh with the red of her uniform. Camoflage for the weary and torn, but that was the reason for the walking stick.

Swallowing her tongue almost adhered to the roof of her mouth, and when Rat spoke up that one visible frigid blue occular crosshairs on her, but… nope, not enough energy to keep up with the other kiddies.

"Sounds delicious." Vic mutters. Cuz it did. She's hungry.

Lady Vic Rant, not Rat

"Thank you for the daily dose of useless info. I would loathe you if I didn't like your pep… that and you took a shiv for me." Taskmaster growls at Melody. He is angry mainly because he is starving and thirsty. Thirst is the big one the food thats just mental but the water, well, conserving it has been a trick, one they've even fought for and damn near killed eachother over /and/ killed others for. The click and klak of the staff turned walking stick, because he needs it, not because he is being lazy like 'Lady Vic'. The little brawl with Mr.X did more of a number on him than he is willing to let on. Over the few days he has done nothing but rib and taunt Grace, more or less ignore Phobos not because he doesn't like him but on the contrary, no attention from him is good. Wait also he gives people shit he likes. It's a conundrum as evidence in attitude he sports towards Lunair and Rant. Lady Vic, he's lumped in the same boat as Grace and takes jabs at.

Grace hasn't said much since beating Razorfist to death over some dude she didn't know and a few sips of water.

The silence may or may not have persuaded Taskmaster to ramp up the taunting; the look he got when he started in on her while they were leaving - dead and murderous, with Razorfist's blood still clinging to her shirt and skin - may have been a different story, though.

Or not; Taskmaster might fancy himself someone who enjoys a challenge.

The cuts she took from Mr. X are pretty much gone by Day 5, but it took a while— too long, really, given how deep they weren't. There's still a bit of a limp in her gait thanks to a colossus-assisted landing involving all of her body weight coming down on her left leg on that last run. This is an improvement: her foot was twisted towards an alarming angle when they bedded down. A wealth of bruises still color her skin from the attempts prior to that one.

Rant's outburst draws a prolonged stare from the Amazon, but no response.


Correction: no verbal response; the wall closest to her suffers her frustration for a few seconds, though, before she finally relents, panting erratically.

And then, her head twitches forward and she resumes walking again.

Grime and dirt clings to what little flesh is exposed of the young Olympian. The group reeks of sweat and filth as they trudge along, almost like a haze of funk they carry along with them. The lack of food, of drink, the steady exertion and the inability to truly rest has all taken its toll on the group. Alexander walks, occasionally adjusting the hang of the sword upon his back, letting his eyes distance as his thoughts turn inwards. His eyes glow faintly, at least in places where the dark encroaches it gives a frame of reference for the travellers.
An hour passes and he finally lifts his voice, the words raspy as he murmurs absently to whomever might be around. "Hanson woulda been better."
He glances over at Grace, "Bieber's got brown hair. Hanson's blonde. Better joke." He nods slowly as of his shoulders weighed a ton.

They continue and it takes some time before they begin to realize that it's starting to get dark, at first it's easy to see it as just shadows cast by the walls and odd angles of the maze, but it's soon clear that the lights are dimming. And the tempature is rising. Taskmaster has heard of this tactic before, it's popular with the Spec Ops crowd, the hardcore sorts, Delta, SEALs, the absolute hardest sorts. Pushed to exhaustion, to the point where human endurance can no longer account for continued function, days without sleep, food, water, and then left in a room with dim lighting and a warm comfortable tempature. It's literally designed to make a soldier sleep, to take away their uncomfortability, to remove the roadblocks that help them maintain focus and will. It's subtle, easy to miss, not to recognize… and it's shockingly successful as a testing tool.

There were a million of things that Rant could have said to Lady Vic and Taskmaster in that moment. It's been a while since she's had a good row; words that flew from her mouth like birds and curse words that cut through the air like butter. Yeah, she had pep, she had gusto, but now she also had delirium and near point insanity and it was also carving out the things that made Melody the little whelp that she once was. In the absense of fear.. in the prescense of looming death, especially since that shiv was right there in her back pocket..

..there was an image of her slitting her own throat..
..and over..
..and over..
..and over..

"Why can't I just fuckin' di—.." She snaps out of it, just in time to stare towards Grace as she thumps and thrashes the wall. There was recognition there.. wait.. what was that idea?

That hand moves towards her backpocket to withdraw the shiv, walking along.. the room becoming warm enough to draw her into a state of relaxation, the blade pressed to each single digit to snip and cut into the pads, wrecking her prints as they regrow again. And again. And again..

"You hear that?"

It was a quiet hum.

"There's something in that wall.."


"Big lady. There's something in that wall.."


"Someone open the wall cause there's somethin in it!" Melody was heading right towards the closest wall, slicing.. dicing.. "I know you guys can hear that shit.."

Lunair has been here. Quiet, dazed, feverish. She's not military, but she has the good sense to listen and trying not to doze off or just curl up and never wake up again. She's working hard staying awake, alive and keeping the few items with her present. She keeps her visor sealed, likely to maintain temperature. She's sweating like Paris Hilton in a Quantum Physics exam. She does giggle a bit at the Bieber chat. But for her part, she's been fairly quiet. There's a staff if someone needed to lean on it, but she listens.

She doesn't seem bothered by little jabs and teasing. Lunair has an immense sense of humor. And she seems quietly glad Lady Vic is here. Do they know one another? Super intelligence pays off sometimes. But it doesn't count now, fevered and dazed as she is. It's a familiar feeling from earlier in her life, when she walked the line between alive and dead - myriads of machines making her live when she greeted Death over IV fed breakfast.

I want to live. When her one desire was to go outside, and feel the sun. She blinks at Melody. "… I hear it too," She offers quietly. Quiet is the word of the day, conserving precious brain power and energy. Also she was totally here all along. Spooky. "Would the lightsaber help?" She asks Grace.

"What. The. Fuck." The words come out more of a whisper, but the resumed walk after a momentary break was in some blissful silence, if it was not for Rant's yammering, Skullface's jabs, and the occasional break in Grace's ragefest. It was a rhythm all it's own and Vic walked to it, and as that hour trode on it became more apparent the walking stick is a bit more for the shakiness and delerium then the leg…

Nothing more gets said, as silence is a virtue for the presences within this group. Small damn world, but she should have known. Though as the room begins to dim in lighting, and the warmth encases cold and weary, perhaps even shocked, system that spear slams down, but no audibly on the ground, on her own instep. Lids that sought to fall ever so slightly bolted open and teeth ground down, the pinched inward divet of cheeks show the other pain she is opening up. Vic would have said something about what Melody was doing if she was not doing it herself, just not so openly now that she has become slightly suspect.

That all, however does not stop her from taing a moment to lean against a wall and wrap that scarf /tighter/ around her wrist. Red scarf, and within the red even gets darker when the garrotte makes its slice. Pushing from that place she exhales slowly, breathing in she clears the distance between herself and Grace, looking back as well at Lunair. "Can that armor amp you up?" She asks, one hand rising to splay fingers over the wall and feel down…

Then hit in a fist.

A martial method that is growing harder and harder with each blow.

"I suggest since we can't hydrate, everyone stretch a bit… " A pause and he looks those present, "Well, those of you who need that kinda thing, right?" Question in there but also some accusation. This whole time they been trying to survive he is also trying to figure each of them out, studying them, watching them, learning and profiling. It comes easily when you absorb physical action. Though Taskmaster only keeps some of it, these folks for the most part are rather sloppy. Phobos and 'Lady Vic' an exception. Grace screaming of mad amounts of potential because well… Amazon.
"Also yeah figure out whatever that is." A thumb juts towards what Melody and Lunair are on about. As if it was his idea. He on the other hand is stretching and staying alert, rest will come in cycles but not in this place. Thats just dumb. "No joke. Pause yo shit if you ain't figuring out what this is and do some stretches, nothing harder we need our energy up." Let the rest find this spectre of a noise he isn't hearing.

"Oh, whaddya know, One Direction over here's the goddamn expert," Grace growls as she fights to ignore the weights hanging from her lashes.

A couple beats later, she murmurs, "I dunno Hanson," in a significantly more sober tone with a sidelong look towards Phobos. She continues to stare for a moment afterwards, but Melody's attempts at getting her attention succeed. Her throat briefly contracts as she swallows whatever bare moisture remains in her mouth and she squints towards the hacker— and the wall she's dead set on assaulting. "Been hearing that shit since we got here," she mutters.

Still, Taskmaster has a point: activity is good, even if trying to peel back the walls of a maze designed to kill an army of posthumans and spec ops badasses is somewhat more strenuous than doing toe touches. Also, everyone else seems to be doing it anyway, and fuck if she's gonna stand around and watch.

"I don't know," she quietly says to Lunair. "Try it— you too, Bass." She upnods towards Phobos, tone absent of venom. "See if you can get that pigsticker in there. Even if you two can't take it all down… maybe you can open it up for us." The Amazon vigorously rubs at her face, slaps her cheeks a couple of times, then momentarily freezes because there's, just, so much blood between her hands and face at this point and she can feel it.
"… maybe enough for you and me and— " She turns towards Vic, drops a hand to her shoulder. "— anyone else who's got it in 'em can to peel it the rest of the way off." She cracks her knuckles, but doesn't join Melody or Vic in further abusing the walls— yet. Instead, she does a little light shadow boxing to keep the blood flowing while experiments are carried out. Or— ignored, either way.

Quiet for longer then he has been in many years, Hobgoblin has gone largely unnoticed and unremarked by the group since Flashpoints death. He walks along with the rest of them, saying nothing, feet shuffeling like everyone else, his mask slightly askew, sagging against his face as if it fit poorly at this point. The mask lands at Grace's feet and he walks over to the panel Vic's been punching. He puts a hand on her shoulder and moves her aside before taking a knee and eyeing the wall. He curls his hand into a fist and slams it forward with a resounding sound. When he draws his arm back, there's a fist shaped indention in the steel. "When I took the formula," BONG, "that gave Osborn his powers," BONG, "I toyed with it first." BONG, "I'm stronger then that," BONG, "trumped up ponce," BONG, "and that squirrly little," BONG, "Spider-Shit!" the more he talks the more the smallish sinewy man's jaw buldges and the wider his eye become. There's blood on the metal now, and it's dented in fairly far, far enough to bend out a small gap in the seam. He starts trying to get purchase, clawing at it with his fingers. The effort costs him two fingernails he doesn't seem to notice peel away. "openupdamnyou!" Okay, so perhaps the Goblin isn't the most stable guy around.

Rant remained in the back. She wasn't strong nor martial like the rest of them there. She was tired and weak, but the only thing that was keeping her with her senses as the fact that she was cutting and healing herself repeatedly, and eying that little break between the wall that Hobgoblin seemed to make.

The world was slowly drowning out now, her expression stoic, she was listening, truly listening to that humming sound deep within. How could she not notice it sooner?

It was probably fear that was kicking it into the background. The constant crying and whining that doled out all rhyme and reason and frantic pushing and running and screaming and havoc that she wasn't allowed time to think..

"Make it bigger…" She murmured quietly. "Make the hole bigger! I'm going inside.." She finally says aloud, her voice cutting off in spaces where it nearly seems to raise a few octaves, and soon.. she clears her throat.

Lunair is sympathetic to Rant. Without her toys, she's a well trained average teenage girl. And now she has a lightsaber. "In theory, yeah. I've not played with it much," Lunair admits. Such is a hazard of dating someone who has super strength. But she turns the purple lightsaber on, and hovers a little. "I'll help out, then," And she'll find out if the plasma blade can cut through the walls.*

It's a pleasant distraction from dehydration, her own mind and feverish dreams that dance nimbly through her consciousness, smirking and then slapping at her. A taunt. But she has to shake her head, staying steady and helping open the hole. If she can't cut it, she'll help peel it back. She doesn't even seem bothered. Task is wise.

*Yes, we realize interpretations vary.

Thor heads out to FRP Ready Room.

Hobgoblin executes her plan all by himself, minus the part where she was trying to conserve energy by not railing on the walls more than necessary. At this point, she doesn't have it in her to offer any thoughts on his running commentary; she just steps up beside him while he struggles and tries to wriggle her hands in there to help him. Or— replace him entirely; her hands are pretty big. Soon, she has a boot planted against the wall for leverage as she wrenches back on the bent corner.

Hobgoblin executes her plan all by himself, minus the part where she was trying to conserve energy by not railing on the walls more than necessary. At this point, Grace doesn't have it in her to offer any thoughts on his running commentary; she just steps up beside him while he struggles and tries to wriggle her hands in there to help him. Or— replace him entirely; her hands are pretty big. Soon, she has a boot planted against the wall for leverage as she wrenches back on the bent corner.

GAME: Lunair has set the pose order to Deathsnuggle Mel Lunair Lady Vic(!?) Taskpants

Let Hobgoblin take out his rage while Luna sweeps in with her…/blink/… lightsaber? There's a pause and that makes it easy for Hobgoblin to take over and do what Lady Vic had been trying which left her knuckles to swell, crack, and bleed. She had lain a few dents in there, but her strength is enhanced, not super and these walls are meant to trap and guide more then what she is. To fuck if she is going to let them in. Where some super lacks, her will takes over.

That smalllip revelaed she wedges her hand in there, scraping the knuckles clean of skin as she wedges in between, flexes, stretches and then /pulls/. Her own jaw sets now, eyes close and she pushes herself. What is left anyway? It was either lay down and die in this place or die fighting. She will take the latter and used this as her stretch and warm up, the muscles along exposed shoulders and upper back straining in the effort as groans come forth, but not from the woman in red.

A yawn escapes Taskmaster mid stretch and he half-assedly watches the others make a hole. "Okay, smallest person in first can go through and scout it out. No point in wasting all this effort if it just leads to somethin' worse." A flex and he feels his shoulders and back pop before leaning forward on the staff awaiting one of the rather slight girls to go through the opening, possibly Hobgoblin or Phobos they're closer to the wirey side of things.

The lights drop down completely to pitchblackness as Grace finishes the work that the Goblin started, the buldging of her arms and the arch of her back proof of how hard it is to bend four inches of cross layered steel temper with graphine composite core. Which is to say, really fucking hard. Once hte panel is peeled back enough, the darkness decends, and with is there's the mechnical sound of metal softly hissing against metal and somewhere from both ends of the coridor they're on they hear the unmistakable sound of a heavy bore weapon ratcheting a round into a chamber. And then the soft whine of barrels spinning up. For the first time a voice comes over the hidden speakers, a human one not distorted by electronics, "Nuh-uh-uuuuuh. Cheaters never prosper… AND THEY TAKE AWAY MY FUN!!" the voice goes from playful to borderline ranting in a heartbeat. Hobgoblin practically throws Rant through the hole first before diving in after her, heedless of the gash that opens up in his leg as he goes.

"I can hear it! Can you hear it!"

The most energy that most have seen in days from Rant was shown here. She was practically gleaming; skin sparkling as she takes a step forward. "Let me thr-.." Words were caught off guard as she was grabbed by the scruff from Hobgoblin and tossed right on inside. She didn't tuck and roll, but landed upon her side with a thud and a skid, the skin nearly falling from her arm as she was set to bleed, immediately gathering herself to a stand to tug down clothing where it had risen and to shake off the limp. And then there was that voice..

Aw hell naw. It's been done.

"Cheaters never prosper? The fuck?" She mutters with a slight limp, her eyes a pure glow now, just as her skin. "I can multi-box five mutherfuckin toons on Warcraft you dick, I can farm all the fucking hotzones and make a fucking killing by cheating. I put those fucking gold farming asians to shame, mutherfucker. Oh, don't you dare get me star—huh..heh..uh…" Ho.. le.. shit.

"But you rockin' the next gen tech. So am I.." Her hand reaches out to press against a goldlen frame, feeling along the surface as those sparkles intensify with her excitement. And of course, the more excited she gets.. the more that sense of properness falls. She tries to walk, it all was dizzying but.. holy.. fucking.. shit. This box that they were holed up in was a thing of beauty. It was like the T.A.R.D.I.S, bigger on the inside and more funkier. If there was a time vortex housed in these walls she wouldn't be surprised. That fucker speaks to you. It..


"But you know what mutherfucker? I'm going to find your fucking heart." She takes another step, shiv still held.. her eyes were roaming.. zooming in.. zooming out.. studying, she was focused. Everything was clearer than it ever has been.

"And I'm going to eat that summa-ma-bitch raw."

Lunair is quiet while she works. Stray lightsabering could be bad. Lunair looks to Lady Vic. Headtilting. "Are you okay?" She notices the damage to her hands. There's some sympathy. She looks over her shoulder to Taskmaster, before looking back into what they cut into.

A wince as her body burns and aches. Some tissue burned away for a battery operated lantern. Light. "I thought of it as creative problem solving," She offers helpfully.

She nods at Melody and blinks. "I don't hear screaming but it doesn't look…" She seems uncertain. Hesitant. Super intelligence does not grant super ability to orient and the lightsaber gets shut off. She staggers a little, struggling to keep the lantern up. She has to take a moment. She isn't so sure about going in there. But Melody… "Rant?" She asks. Unlike lemmings and video game Nazis, Lunair does not follow her buddies around corners when they start dropping, nor does she patrol back and forth.

But neither is she going to admit having a bit of visual trouble for a moment on creating a lantern. Just uh, being cautious.

Pausing, Vic is leaning upon the part of the wall peeled back like a banana, rounded edges making a prop. The blood from her skin peeled knuckles slowly oozes forth, showing the depth of the perspiration as to not even have a flow, just bubble and congeal. Raising it to lips tongue extends and she strokes it along the minced flesh, the visible eye tic'ing at the gesture, but it was moisture and her own.

Lunair's words make her blink as Melody's faded off somewhere around tehno-babble, looking down at her own hand and back, then around to see if anyone noticed before she resigns to wiping the rest of the blood off on her hip.

The sudden darkness does not bring her to slow, only a muttered command and a faint glow comes from behind her hair. There's sounds coming from the wall and the machinery and then from where they once were… "Get clear, get into the wall!" Reaching forward now she grabs Lunair and jerks her through, though to Task. "Stand there like a non-believer some more or move your ass, but I ain't touching you." She doesn't know where he's been but has ideas!

Night vision was activated upon being called a cheater because: "Look who you called into this. I'm in it to win it. And for the kicks." Slowly, stiffly her hand rises and minced flesh stretches as a single middle digit extends and she waves it around.

Had. Enough.

Taskmaster's headgear isn't just for show and when the lights completely go dark the passive filters switch over. "Oh, Ma Deuce. So beautiful, so loving, so familiar, so fucked. Move move move. She brought her sister, get in the crack, get in the crack." No need to tell Taskmaster twice, they may be getting herded like cattle but there is very little options left in that hallway. Squeeze through the crevice, let it take some flesh with it. Who cares. Better than eating 50 cal rounds for their final meal. Even an Amazon wouldn't like what that tasted like. Very filling but in all the wrong ways.

You know the fun thing about cheating? It allows you to cut corners, allows you to play outside of the rules, beyond the scope. Short cuts are awesome like that. Rant's eyes can't find the box of brains she's looking for in this mess of next next next gen tech she's standing inside, everything is disorenting in the extreme like that. Which is why stubbing her toe may have been the best thing to ever happen to her. Because as she hops around questioning the legitimate parentage of whoever built this deathtrap she'll note she's been standing on a server stack that's nearly two stories tall ever since she stepped inside the wall. Also fun fact, people should be careful where they step. The constantly shifting 'gears' of this place will not even notice the resistence human flesh would offer as they pulped it to bits.

Oh yeah. And outside in the hall? There is the thunderous roar of vulcan canon fire richoeting around like the worlds worst game of supersonic pong.

"Ow.. ow.. ow.." Melody hops along.. and suddenly stops. It was about a ten foot drop that she would have survived, but the others wouldn't be so lucky. She takes a slightly stumbling step back, her eyes nearly crossing at the dizzying feeling, her hand clutching her stomach as she swallows the slight hint of bile that graces her mouth and makes it sting. But yeah.. that realization. She kneels upon the ground, more to her benefit, to look and peer into the ground, to keep herself centered as well. Two fold, really. Any more movemen… wait.. she was sliding.. just a touch..

"For fuck sake guys you gotta move!"

But Melody wasn't, her fingers grasp the shiv as she presses it to her wrist, digging in with a slight cry of pain, yanking the blade downward to expose flesh and cut nerve beneath. No, this wasn't suicide, she went left and right and did not follow that trail.

"Run!" Cause.. mama has to do her work, her hand was grasped as the shiv was tossed aside, clanging against the gold and yet no sound of where the bottom was reached. Not like she was listening, anyways.

She twists her wrist just enough so the blood could flow through the machinery, skin still aglow, eyes lit afire.. those babies implanted within her were working.. eating and attaching itself to coaxials and cabling. Rant was a living virus to computers and machines alike.. and this was about to be her new toy.

Lunair doesn't need telling twice. She prefers not to be splattered. Lunair gets jerked through, her vision reeling a moment. "Hithanks," She's grateful, even if keeping her lantern up is a bit taxing. In the sense that 'a bit' is like trying to gargle the entire Pacific Ocean. Fortunately, her armor keeps her from getting scraped like whoa. And she's going to stay slightly hovering but not so that she'll bump into a gear.

Because she is made of meat and she is in a meat grinder. Her forehead is hot to the touch, vision wavering periodically. She mmphs softly. This place ie making her dizzy. Her stomach protests vigorously, and it's a good thing she hasn't eaten in a while, as it settles for nausea and dizziness. Just stay still. Keep the light up. Stay upright. She is in the machine, and Rant is doing her thing. She's not even able to muster a middle finger or curse words. She simply /is/, the din of the roar outside beating wardrums to a primitive mind. Stay. Watch. If needbe hang onto someone. Follow when they move.

Swiss cheese on one side, ground flank on th eother, Vic teeters as things shift beneath her feet and with apinwheeling of arms she rocks forward as a gear slides from beneath feet and the mchanism begins to lock and rotate. Heels hit the wall and she /feels/ that tug, like it sought to suck her in and she -pushed-. Launching up and out her arms spread like she is about to swan dive into the depths, but tucking in suddenly she rolls her body to the side in an acrobatic motion, the spear she had lain across her back grabbed and shot out to wedge into a crevice and anchor her, swinging her around to land in a crouch on a ledge within, but just across from them.


She looked down, but thankfully the only thing that bubbles forth is a small urp before she straightens to a stand and wipes the already healin knuckles across dry and cracked lips, the impact having jarred the mask to slide and reveal eyes, one a hazy blue, the other a scarred bionic.

"Fuck you!" She yells into teh mechanized ether, ripping the mask down and throwing it into a set of gears.

Ravager mille fingers to the world!

Ravager middle fingers to the world!

"Was wondering when daddies lil angel was gonna show herself. You gotta work on your disguises I had you pegged in a back flip day one." Doesn't hurt that he translates body language better than Rosetta Stone. Taskmaster follows to a safe enough lip to where he can run his trap while the rest handle the heavy work. Kind of what he has been doing from the go except for with Mr.X there. Oh he also kinda lost his shit with the rats too but thats been long enough it is forgettable. "I would just say, lets hold her hostage until Papi Psycho lets us loose but your family is just fucked up." An exhausted sigh and Taskmaster squints past broken visor and readout display towards the others, at least it's partially intact. "Are we there yet? My fridge is going to be a fuckin' nightmare. I got 5 day old Mexican in there now."

Nanites are industrious little things, though perhaps Rant's delivery system could use a little upgrading. It's possitivly primeval. Bleeding on stuff. Seriously? Who does that? Blood stains just do /not/ come out of anything. It's a known fact.

It take little time for Rant's mind to connect to the computer core which is, frankly, terryfyingly large. The amount of automation going on in the facility is staggering. Frankly, it's to much. Focus is required, focus and… an off switch. Off switch would be go… goo… huh. Lookie there. Off. Just like that. The thunderous guns from outside suddenly fall silents, the soft 'tinkle' of dropping brass quickly dyign away. And a map. A map would be nice.

As Rant works the machines around everyone, that threaten to take away stray and random body parts (starting with that ever presented middle finger of Rose's), begin to slow, then come to a smooth and quiet halt. The constant hum of 'happening' that has been haunting them since their arrival finally fades, and in the silence they begin to realize how really constant it was. Oh. And lookie there. A map…. of sorts. Shift this wall here. Drop that wall down, raise those steps and… ooo. Lets straight out these hallways. There we go. A straight shot to the center. Sure, it's nearly a two mile hike, but it's a straight two miles.


Not the movie. No no not that travesty that made her laugh until she cried. This was the end. She was still connected, walking with a daze, picking apart the semantics of code and architecture as the point of egress was met. She doesn't let go of this program, she was going to short out the consoles of that little fuck who tried to kill them the entire time there. Yeah. This was no happy pippy Melo.. okay she was still there but holy cow. You go through crap like that for four to five days with dudes who break bones, shoot people, pop out eye sockets and pummel fists until peoples heads were gravy.. you come out changed.

These people? Hard chiseled this chick from gigabytes.

"Alright.. end of the line.." She mutters, her eyes darting left and right, still a-glow, light in the dark place and a beacon of sparkles and angry fury. Surely she's ranted about some high tech companies attempting this that and the other and named off lists that would probably make someones head spin but that's pretty much what happens when you get high and ride the broadband waves of the information highway. IE. Google. Don't get high and google. Or wikipedia. You'll never find an ending. By then the suns up and you'd be surrounded by piss bottles.

And Melody bled too much. She just drops to the ground as soon as they were out. Or approached. Someone needed a bath with bleach and lysol, and a fifty pound steak that Fat Andrew couldn't finish on whatever that show is that gave him the Beetus.

Lunair is dry heaving. There's so little left. She looks to Taskmaster. A headshake. No holding Ravager hostage. She knew. But blowing someone's cover is 50 shades of rude (ew). She keeps her lantern up. "Ew." Lunair sort of just - if she ever raids Taskmaster's house, she's loading the fridge with C4. It could ostensibly be billed as community service.

But she's sort of busy trying to keep whatever remains in her guts in there. She offers Ravager a hand. Granted, it's an armored hand, but she does care. And Lunair is a bit in awe. Lunair follows with the others, dazed, feverish and concerned about Melony. Even if she's a bit hardcore in WoW, human endurance has limits. The world tilts and reels, feverish visions dancing in front of her like she's at a lightswitch rave.

"thankyouthankyou." And she's just going to kneel a bit, letting herself rest.

Ravager takes Lunair's offered hand, standing from her crouch ina slow motion that typically would b seen from the elderly and expiring on their way to deathly retiring in Florida. Lunair was in worse shape and Rose knocks on her visor, gesturing for her to remove her helmet with a weird waffly finger flail and a motion back, as if it ejected like an astronauts visor. Who knows… "I'm going to get you to medical help as soon as we get out of here." Oh Lunair will know where, but tell it aloud in this company? Hobgoblin, melody. Strangers. Taskmaster…

"Touch me an I will shove you in a dark box covered in slices, salt you and add rats." Colorful!

None the less she scans him and the looks of him get a small huff of an exhale, any truth hidden away behind a dull placidity, comfortably numb.

Reaching the end though, she does not fall, she stands and uses the spear as a solid lean-to, taking on Luna and waiting for a shoe to drop or a cab to roll up. She felt gross.

"Suck it up kiddo, only got 2 miles left. This will be cake." First to Lunair as she heaves and then to the rest, "Bout a cadence? The woman dressed in red, made her living in her be… no? Okay okay, I got another. I just made it up." Stole it like everything else but hes been hearing it over and over again in his head. Taskmaster clears his throat and starts to walk and sing; ""I can ride Slade's mom with no handlebars. No handlebars. No handlebars. I can ride Slade's mom with no handlebars… c'mon gang, sing it with me nice and loud make sure his hearing aid has to be turned down from the noise. Victory march."
Clearing his throat Taskmaster proceeds, "Look at me, look at me, hands in the air like it's good to be alive and a famous killer, even with the paths are all crookedy, I can show you how to snap a neck, and I can almost put it back together… "
Mumbling under his breath Taskmasters picks back up with the chorus and Hobgoblin joins him! "I can guide a missile by satellite, by satellite, by satellite, and I can hit a target through a telescope, through a telescope, and I can end the planet in a holocaust, in a holocaust, in a holocaust, I can ride Slade's mom with no handlebars, no handlebars… "

The long hallways leads to a giant round room with multiple passageways into it. The ceiling is domed so far over head that it's distance makes it hard to really picture accurately in one's mind eye, it loses scope. The room rises slowly in rings, like am amphitheater in reverse, to a large flat circle at the peak. Deathstroke stands there, his arms crossed over his chest. There is no sign of the injuries he sported when they first met him in this otherworldly hell. He wears a full body suit of thin scaled armor with only a pair of swords on his back. This time he's maskless, showing the distinguished features of an elder statesmen… if those old codgers looked like they could run a record decathlon while carrying The Hulk. "You're late." he says flatly as the last of the group flops it's way into the center circle. His eye settles on Rose first and while there's no outward sign of it, she's known that look long enough to /feel/ his displeasure itch it's way across her skin. He doesn't have to say it, she can hear the words in her head like he was telepathic, 'We'll talk of this later.'.

"Congratulations." he says, eye the lot of them. He kicks an army duffel bag on the ground in front of him, "Gallon of water for each of you, rations too. Eat slow, drink in sips, otherwise you'll cramp up and vomit. Take the laxatives that are in there as well, you don't want your first shit to come this dehydrated without them." he talks in the same tone a doctor might, if he was a jerk doctor, cold and detached, clinical. There's nothing worth being embarrassed about because he doesn't care enough to shame anyone over trivial things like bodily functions.

He uses his foot to push a second large bag over towards the group, "Bedrolls." he explains simply, "You get ten hours to sleep and put something in your bellies, then I return to tell you exactly what you got yourselves into and inform you of the rules. Welcome to the team children. Expect that this was the easy part, from this point on everything gets tough." he offers as he turns to go, leaving the lot to their food, their water, and their sleep.

Clearly he'll have to make an example of someone at the debriefing as well.

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