The Incredible Hug

August 03, 2015:

As the Authority begins to come together, Rant and Lunair have to try and lay a foundation of trust with the team's most volatile element - the Incredible Hulk.

Somewhere in the Appalachians

A sparsely populated region of the Appalachian Mountains, somewhere in West Virginia.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\#https://youtu.be/6iWrIfEgFlQ "You've Got A Friend in Me" by Randy Newman]


Fade In…

The buzz through the air was almost dizzying, Rant was ready to give up and get out until the boots shackle themselves to her feet and she was still sprawling and spiraling. "WOaaaahllyshit!" She manages to scream out, clamping onto Lunair like a spidery monkey, her feet flailing and slowly getting used to the motions that the rockets upon her feet aid with.

"Okay.." She manages to murmur out, figuring she'll stick to Lunair until they land, but taking the time to keep her eyes upon the horizon as she looks off into the row of trees that seem disturbed, and rumbling. "Do you think he's over there?" She murmurs, one hand striking out to point into the northeast direction, while her gaze falls towards the ground below to see almost a half a dozen animals fleeing the location.

"I think finding him is going to be easy.."

Lunair doesn't seem bothered in the slightest. Actually, she's glad to be of help. She makes sure Rant is nice and steady. She's used to flying, it seems. "Yeah, probably follow the flying trees. I am pretty sure flying tres are an invasive species," She muses. "Just hang on. I'll hold onto your hand, too." Lunair will steer them a bit. Hooray super science. "Somehow, it kind of reminds me of the Savage Land but with a shirtless guy instead of t-rexes." She seems to agree that finding Hulk shouldn't be too hard.

At least she seems to be pretty good at this flying business.

The Hulk looks up as he hears the jet boots and suddenly leaps, emerging from the tops of the trees like a massive, emerald missile, sending leaves and limbs scattering around him as he descends to crash down again in a clearer area around the foot of the mountside, sending shattering cracks through the Earth around his massive feet as he stares back up at the flying women.

He lets loose a roar and beats his chest once with an echoing thump, every bit the gorilla as he watches their descent…

Rant couldn't help but laugh. Lunair was pretty funny, even under pressure. Rant herself couldn't hold it together like this, no matter how stoic she's become since joining the Authority. It was almost like they were in the movie with how Lunair steered her, Rant glancing up towards the sky to drink in the sun, her eyes closing as she finally pops her eyes open to glance towards her partner. "Savage Land? What's th-.."

And then there was the crash and leap, her jaw tensing as she glances down, their descent was slowing but.. there he was. Out in the open. They didn't have to hunt and search.. it seemed he was about to start hunting them. The roar causes her to cringe, her limbs already set to shaking as she tries to take a few breaths in to calm herself. She may.. may have even peed a little.

"Ohmygodbadideabadidea.."

Lunair is usually fairly calm because she has some dire socialization issues and a very skewed life. She cheerfully barrels into things because she doesn't know differently and furthermore, her attempts at living a normal life ended with far more casualties than accepting it. "Don't worry, I have you. Have you ever played that Portal video game?" She asks.

"I think he's saying hi. And it's a place with dinosaurs. Long story." She keeps a hand on Rant and helps, depending. She's more stoic than before the Authority, but it's hard to beat down cheerful. But hey, them's the breaks. "It'll be okay as long as we don't startle him. I'll go in front. Just remember to scoot sideways if I get dropkicked like in Charlie Brown or something." Her references are a little off. "Anyway, here's a portal gun. Just drop the exit where you want to go, then the entrance and you can go anywhere in visual range in a heartbeat. So if you're scared, just back away a bit and we'll take it from there."

Time to get closer to Hulk. "HI MISTER HULK!" She waves and takes them a little closer. "Is it Doctor Hulk ? I forget if you have a phd. Anyway, you landed well so - are you ready, sir?"

The Hulk crinkles his massive, Cro-Magnon brow as Lunair addresses him. He had been preparing to fight, seeing the flying humans approaching. Flying humans usually want to fight, especially if they wear bright colors or capes. And these have guns and guns usually get turned against Hulk and pester him with stinging. Hulk doesn't like chafing!

But the words that come out of one human's mouth are very strange. The other one seems to be very afraid, which is good and…wait, Hulk knows that one. That's the sparkly girl, the one that is Banner's friend. Hulk helped her once, because she was helpless and someone with a gun was trying to hurt her. Humans always hurting other humans, too. Puny mean things.

"HULK CONFUSED!" he finally just yells back. "HULK NOT WANT FIGHT! DON'T MAKE HULK SMASH!"

"Nuh uh.." Melody immediately says. She was more of a Warcraft type, a Destiny getter.. and this was much more worse than being ganged up on 4v1. "I.. I don't think his hollaring constituted as a Hi." But, they were already on the ground and she had a portal gun within her hand, which was soon slung upon her shoulder and upon her back, hidden away yet at the ready should she need.

Lunair was brave, stepping forward.. all the while Melody stepped back. She looked like a deer in the headlights as she watches the two of them.. briefly converse. She doesn't remember the Hulk calming down, she only remembered that he snatched her up, gave her away, and ran.

"Uh.." She finally stammers out, her hand lifting slowly. "I.. I really don't want to fight either, Mr. Hulk.. um.." Shit.. What would you do in this situation? What.. would you do?

"Can.. can I give you a hug? I hugged Batman once, he didn't like it so much.."

Shame.

Poor Melody. Lunair does care, she just … never got to see many faces or do that socialization as a wee kid, so there's an awful lot of gaps to fill in. Regardless, Lunair feels a bit better with Melody in a safe spot and her portal gun. "Huh, a bathug? Cool."

Beats the bat-mace. Anyway, she looks to the Hul. She offers a polite wave. "Hi! It's okay, I am kind of confused, too. We don't want to fight you. We were just checking in on you," She explains. Lunair wasn't going to just ditch someone in a forest. That's just mean. "And uh." Well, Rant wants a hug. Lunair doesn't know how to react to that, so she sort of … hovers there. Confused. You can almost feel the tangible ??? aura. Someone might have to reboot her.

The Hulk is just as bewildered as they are. They haven't attacked him yet and they say they don't want to fight him, but they're obviously armed and, well, out in the middle of nowhere. And the sparkly girl wants to…hug him? It takes him a moment to even find that word in his vocabulary, what little of it he manages to pull in from Bruce's hogging of the intellectual capacity.

"Sparkly girl want…hug Hulk? And you…what mean check on Hulk? Hulk not hurt anything. Except bear, Hulk headbutt bear, but bear attack Hulk first! Not Hulk's fault!" he says, looking strangely wary, his arm's off to the sides as he looks at Rant. Not exactly a hugging posture, but not hostile either, just…bewildered.

"Mmhmm." Melody wasn't exactly proud of that. Okay, she was. He actually snapped her shoulder out of socket, then she hugged him, then he got shot.. she could have took the bullet for him but.. he was being mean and threw a cat. "He's.. not really a nice person. He threw a cat." But, bathugs. Nothing like it.

Melody takes a slower step closer, her hands immediately up so that he could see that she wasn't going to hurt him. It was a wary approach, just like his tone, she didn't mean to match his feelings but they were there. "She means that she just wants to see if you're okay. You had a big fall.." She pauses. "..Well, Bruce had a big fall. You kinda just popped out there willy nilly, but that's okay. You're okay and you're fine.." She was getting close and within arms reach, still he wasn't ready for a hug but.. "That bear will be fine.." Its probably dead.

"But, you remember me, you call me Sparkily girl. A man with a flaming head called me Melody of the Lights.." She tries to smile, but she was terrified. "You got my best friend inside of you. You know what that makes you? You're my best friend too. And we're going to take care of you."

Lunair is dating a big green guy, sure. But this is just confused. "Um. Well, I'm sure the bear had it coming…" She muses. She's confused. But she rolls with the punches. "Poor kitty." Lunair likes animals. "And yeah." What Melody said. She settles quiet, looking around. "I'll keep an eye out. Were we expecting any sort of trouble?"

The Hulk snarls, "Banner not Hulk's friend. Banner hate Hulk," he grimaces, but he looks away rather than jerking back or lashing out. He looks, if anything, frightened, which seems fairly strange given that the beast has nothing particularly to fear from either of these two. His beady eyes dart to either side of him, as if expecting an ambush. The Army used to try that sometimes, putting someone or something innocent or nice in front of him and then shooting him in the back or dropping a trap on him. Hulk's been hunted for his entire existence. He doesn't put his head into any ropes anymore.

"Yes…Hulk remember Sparkle Girl. Hulk protected Sparkle Girl,' he says quietly. He's momentarily focused on her, although he doesn't forget Lunair. Bruce's trust for Melody, one of the few people he does trust, is rare enough that it bleeds a bit over into the Hulk, even if Hulk doesn't like to think he's a part of Banner anymore than Banner wants to believe he's part of Hulk.

Melody didn't forget about Lunair either. That portal gun was about to come in handy in a very quick moment.. that is.. if she's not smacked first. But she was prepared to use it, even though her arms were lifted and hands shown. "Well I know that now. But Banner is my friend. That makes you my friend too. Right?"

She watches as he looks nervously around then sighs, her hands dropping to her sides. At that moment, she saw nothing but fear there, wariness, paranoia. She really just wanted to give the big guy a hug. "Yeah, Hulk protected Sparkle Girl." She says finally, then leans over to try to grasp for a big finger, just so that she could at least try to hug his massive arm. "Did I ever tell you thank you? Cause thank you. You were pretty awesome. And Lunair thinks you're awesome, she called you Mister. That's an honorable title." Sort of.

Aw, poor Hulk. Lunair is quietly sympathetic. "Yeah," She agrees with Rant, but she keeps her distance. She is looking around. "I'm watching out for people," She promises. "This is a pretty deserted area and I think most of the tourists hit the river, to be honest."

The Hulk lets Rant grasp a hold of his finger, still looking more than a bit confused by the entire thing, "Sparkle Girl…thank Hulk?" he says, "Hulk…not like seeing hurt. Hulk no like soldiers. Hate soldiers, soldiers always hurt Hulk just like soldiers almost hurt Sparkle Girl," he snorts.

She grasps him by the arm and he allows it, even reaching out and…very gently…patting her on the other arm with a massive paw.

"Sparkle Girl…welcome."

Lunair is keeping watch. She's watching the two, curious. But she's also mindful not to butt in. Apparently Hulk is now being treated like a wayward puppy. it's an 'aw' moment, but she keeps quiet. Best to make sure no one pops in on them.

"Well yeah, wouldn't you thank me if I gave you a burger or something?" Okay, this was pretty easy. She was half thinking she had to run away or.. probably pee herself crying. It was a gentle pat, of course, that lets her pull away. She still holds onto that large finger, tugging and pulling him into Lunair's direction to get the three of them close in a triad formation.

"Okay. You guys. I have no clue how to get out of here and back to civilizatioin." Yes, she was talking to the Hulk like he understood. "Do you have a map or something in your armor, Lunair?"

The Hulk considers for a moment, looking around, sniffing the air, "Hulk like burger," he mutters. He once ate the entire contents of a food truck in Brooklyn. Burgers and corndogs and tamales, oh my.

He looks over at Lunair as Rant addresses her, cocking his head, "Lunair…Gun Girl have funny name," he mutters and then, suddenly, he reaches out, grabbing a hold of Lunair and hanking her to his chest and doing the same to Melody with his other arm, pulling both women to him suddenly in a grip that could easily be crushing…but he's careful, just holding them. "Hold on Hulk. Hulk find burger…" he says and then, with a spring and a kick, he leaps up into the air, assuming that, eventually, they'll reach a town with a McDonald's. Even Hulk knows McDonald's.

"… I need a new code name," Lunair finally admits. "I may have to change my name anyway, after the HYDRA shenanigans." Also being mistaken for a guy with a trucker's hat among other things, is totally awkward. "I have some maps and overlays as well as GP— eeeeeeeeeessssssss-" She's startled as she's pulled to Hulk's chest.

Fortunately, instead of a violent response, Lunair just sort of freezes up a moment. "Um, thank you, Hulk. Sure thing. I can pay for us," She offers. "My treat." Why not? It's the diplomatic thing.

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